Desert Canyon gets new owners

Updated: August 1, 2011

Central Washington course gets sold to owner of Rock Island and Alta Lake courses

Desert Canyon Golf resort in Orondo, Wash. now has a new life thanks to Don Barth. Barth, who owns Rock Island Golf Club south of Wenatchee and Alta Lake Resort in Pateros, Wash. has purchased Desert Canyon giving the Central Washington resort a bright future.

Desert Canyon Resort opened in 1993 amid rave reviews. The course was in just about every top 10 list and the Jack Frei design was a place that people on the west side of the Cascade Mountains ventured to play on a regular basis. But through the years, the course ran into financial troubles.

Some of those troubles seemed fixed when the owners of Homestead Farms bought Desert Canyon in 2007. Homestead Golf (the owners of Homestead Farms Golf Club) built a new hotel and added condo units along the golf course to make it a complete destination getaway. But Homestead Golf suffered through some financial problems and looked to sell Desert Canyon. A deal was put together with Barth and his partners Randy and Lynn Anderson. The price was not announced.

Mark Rhodes, the head professional at Desert Canyon, is excited about the change of ownership and the possible changes in the works. Rhodes said some of the first plans call for an elimination of the cross-fairway waste areas on two of the holes on the Desert Nine (front nine) and convert them to grass. The sixth hole, the award-winning par-5, is expected to have its fairway widened giving golfers a better chance to keep the ball in the fairway.

Desert Canyon is a true desert golfing experience, located on a bluff above the Columbia River. In fact, the view from the par-5 sixth green gives a look far down the valley and the Columbia River. The course has five sets of tees and has plays to 7,000 yards.

There is also a putting course, which takes on the look of the championship course. It’s a good way to either get ready for a round or something right after.

On-site Accommodations allow golfers to enjoy the desert in spring, summer, fall and winter! The Desert Canyon Golf Resort offers luxury suites with living rooms, spacious bedrooms, and full kitchens completely supplied with all you need to make the lodge your home for a night or an extended stay. All accommodations are beautifully furnished with the finest amenities including a flat screen television in the living room and bedroom of every suite. Come relax in the peace and quiet of the desert. One, two and four bedroom units are available.

For more information on Desert Canyon and what it has to offer, call the course at 1.800.258.4173 or see