TLC in MN
17 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This is one of the most cared-for courses I've played. Tee pads are spacious and concrete, often limned with brick retaining walls. The greens are covered in red mulch, and any area that could be wet after a rain is covered in hay. It's tough to ask for much more in terms of course manicuring. No problem with mowing on the open holes, either.
About two thirds of the course is wooded, and many holes feature multiple lines to the basket. These were fun holes, and they held my interest until the very end.
Unlike many people, I appreciate a good water carry, and Blue Ribbon Pines has several. None were exceptionally challenging, but they were enough to get in your head and to make the power throwers reconsider if they could get all the way over the pond (one caveat: the ponds were covered in algae, and if your disc goes in, I assume you won't find it).
Hole 4 is maybe the most photographed hole in the game with the long alley between symmetrical rows of tall trees. These are the kind of holes you daydream about.
Hole 7 was a cool shot with a pond lurking about 2/3 up the fairway. Again, if you have a huge arm, you could clear it, but otherwise you are considering how much you can safely put on your drive to lay up. This is how ball golf structures holes, and I love it when disc golf does, too.
One of the late holes has a downed tree parallel to the ground about 5-6 feet off the ground. It felt a little artificial (I don't think it fell like that), but I like it. It gets in your head. If you can throw low and flat under it, it's an ace run. You can throw an easy shot over it and card the safe par, too. Either way, you're thinking about your options.
Cons: No elevation at all. Obviously the designers can't help this, but this is an absolute requisite for a 5.0 for me, and probably for a 4.5.
Tee signs bordered on useless. They were just pictures of what you could see with your own eyes (tee signs are supposed to show what I CAN'T see from the tee). On a wooded course like this, I'd like to know where the trouble lies and where the lines are without having to walk the whole fairway.
The throws across the open space felt a little bland. I'm all for adding open holes to the technical course, but you can still have the greens be wooded (or the tee areas wooded) so that there is a gap that needs to be hit. On too many of these, it was basically "throw in that direction as far as you can," and these holes just felt like filler between the two wooded sections.
Finally, criticism of one hole: hole 9 was a 140-foot hole with a 90-degree dogleg right. Getting a 3 was trivially easy, but getting a 2 would require nailing a very long putt, and a 4 would require completely botching the hole on multiple throws. This felt like a crammed-in hole.
Update: I've been told there is a legit line to the basket on this hole, and I'll trust the locals.
Other Thoughts: A 4.0 signifies an "Excellent" course. Blue Ribbon Pines is excellent, and the enthusiasm of the locals is very evident. I love that Minnesotans plow this in the winter. I was born in the Twin Cities, but I lost that level of heartiness along the way. This is a must play if you are in the Twin Cities, and I look forward to my next visit.
17 of 19 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: Greatest course I've played and I've played all the best around the Twin Cities area. Nice sized concrete tees, manicured greens and fairways. Excellent variety of holes. All are unique in some way. I only live 5 minutes away! Lost discs with name and number get turned into the proshop. 27 holes and maybe 36 one day!
Cons: They really only have two right to left holes (Hyzer for RHBH) (optimal route) #7 379' and #8 160'. I guess you could count #14 as well though a straight drive works there. Costs 5 dollars to play but well worth it. Deer flys are bothersome from early- mid July to Mid-Late August. Pesty things.
Other Thoughts: Really happy with this course and the owners are very nice as well!
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 9 Not
This course will ruin all others for you
Pros: Super friendly staff. The entire course is in top shape. Super clean. Challenging enough for most players and decent variety. The pro shop is very well stocked with gear at good prices. Beer is available!! Pet friendly. There is a cool shack that is open on the weekends in the middle of the woods that has beer, burgers, snacks. They retrieve discs from the water often and if they are marked, they keep them in lost and found.
Cons: Not too hard to lose a disc or 2.
Other Thoughts: Nice place to bring kids if they want to walk with and not play because it is pretty flat.
1 of 10 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: Well maintained, great holes, awesome tee signs. i particularly enjoyed the tee signs on water holes with the distnace to the water included. Liked the hole 18? with the distances so i could see how far i was throwing that day.
Cons: Didnt care for the elbow hole sure i dueced it but seemed out of place on a course of this caliber like it was fit in remaining space?? This is the only negative i could find about this course
Other Thoughts: the first time i played it was in 2012 the week before minnesota majestic and it was a long course as they were preparing for the event. I have played in many states and course and this is the best one i have played.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 12 Not
Pros: Best course ever! That is all.
Cons: That I live 3 hours away and can't play it every day. Really the only thing I didn't like was the little 90 degree hole. Kind of seemed like they didn't plan that one out very well
0 of 12 people found this review helpful.
Must Play In Minnesota
13 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - Privately family owned, and the family sees the value in investing and improving the course
- Although there are water hazards, there are water rakes to fish out your disc, and the BRP staff searches the water hazards weekly and returns any disc with info on it. Anyone found taking discs that are not theirs will have their priveleges to play revoked.
- Pro shop with plenty of inventory to choose from
- Immaculate landscaping on every hole
- Season Pass runs year round from April-April
- Good mix of wooded and open holes with different lines to choose on each hole (besides #4)
- #4 is a 400 foot tunnel shot through majestic trees. Both frustrating and magnificent at the same time.
- One of the holes has distance boards like at a golf driving range. Fun to see how far your first drive goes.
- Snack shack about halfway through with very friendly workers who offer to buy you a drink if you get an ace and then laugh at you as you shank it off the first possible tree.
- Either a pro or a con depending on how you look at it, but there is not much elevation change. Makes for an easier 27 holes and your legs don't get worn out.
- Requires shot shaping. You can't really get by with just a forehand or just a backhand on this course. Nice to be challenged to throw a little bit outside of your comfort zone.
Cons: - Lots of water, although chances are better here that your disc will be returned.
- Either a pro or a con depending on how you look at it, but there is not much elevation change. The course is on a converted sod farm so most throws you will make can be relatively flat and you aren't challenged by elevation.
- A few of the holes can seem slightly repetitive. It's kind of the same "throw it over the field and avoid the water" or "throw it through the trees and stay on course" just with different lines, distances or shots. But after 27 holes, there has to be some sort of a limit on what sort of variety you can expect from a flat course.
Other Thoughts: Definitely worth the drive if you live in Minnesota or are in Minnesota for business/visiting family etc. This course is on the way to my parents' house and I will leave a couple of hours early every time I visit them, just to make sure I can swing by and play this course.
I also believe I read somewhere that the family plans to keep improving on the course and possibly expand it. That makes for a fun course to keep coming back to.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful.
One of the best
2 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Great layout but the landscaping done to it is second to none. Was blown away by the real golf course feel it had.
Cons: Not located closer to my house.
Other Thoughts: Any DG'er who visits this area needs to make the trip to play this course - will be well worth your efforts.
2 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Amazing! the one thing i miss after moving to Australia
1 Helpful / 10 Not
Pros: this course has everything! hands down the best course i have ever played! it should have it's own national tournament and not be grouped with the minnesota majestic! it's head and shoulders above the other two courses
Cons: it's 25 minutes away from minneapolis. but you have to be far away to have trees and the size of the course
Other Thoughts: went there for my bachelor party before i left the country, best experience ever! they treat you so well!
1 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Pay-to-play done right
7 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: - Private, family owned
- Landscaping is taken to another level
- Signature hole after signature hole
- Amazing tee pads
- 27 holes
- Secluded and relatively uncrowded
- Snack shack/Beer shack in the woods. Really cool place to take a break.
Cons: - Really none, if I had to nitpick it would be at the lack of notable elevation... but that doesn't mean the course doesn't have any. Just none of those "top of the world" shots.
Other Thoughts: Well its been said before but this place really is a "must play" course for any serious golfer. The family that runs the place couldn't be nicer. We spoke with Ray's (the owner) father when we arrived and he told us about how the course came to be and how he is just amazed that people travel so far to come to their course. We later saw him out on the large mower cutting grass for most of the day, waving at all the golfers as they passed. He also kept the snack shack stocked up with beer of our liking for the afternoon/evening rounds.
I really think hole #7 (#6 in the majestic layout) is one of the finest examples of how a par 4 should be done. Total risk-reward on the first shot to carry the water. Laying up means a bomber 2nd to get up near the green. I just can't describe enough how cool this hole was in particular.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: always changing. lots of diffrent teepad options. grass is cut all the time. sweet proshop too
Cons: water. lots of water on most holes. lost lots of discs out there
Other Thoughts: fun course for $5. not far from the cities or st. cloud area.
1 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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