11 Helpful / 0 Not
Bell Bottom Blues
This course has you feeling like a mouse on a mogul course. The terrain is a constantly changing set of small hills that give ample elevation variations within the holes.
The trees' low ceiling allows for significant ground growth, and contributes to a very secluded feel between the holes. Trails are beaten in within the trees aiding navigation (for the main 18).
From the course kiosk, you are immediately in the woods. The holes alternate well between Left and Right, before opening up a bit with some wider fairways and fewer trees as you finish the round. Great risk/reward factor on some holes.
Wonderful course feel and atmosphere. Thin creeks can be found among and through the holes. One of the small bridges was the project of an area Eagle Scout.
Personally, this is the kind of land I think of when someone says "perfect for disc golf."
I have only 2, and they are significant.
Next tee signs:
It is easy to find the main 18 holes, but you wouldn't have any indication that alternate holes existed without a map, or in my case, a DGCR scorecard. I had to hunt for each one, and I still missed one.
….And believe me when I say, you don't want to miss any of these holes. Once, while I was searching for one of the alternates, I saw the basket first. It was surrounded by shade, with one bright ray of sunlight directly on it. I felt like I should cue the harp and choir to accompany it. It was that kind of course.
I cannot, for the life of me, imagine a situation where a brilliant course of this design was implemented, but when it came to the tees, they said "carpet tees are a good idea." It's like painting the Mona Lisa and deciding to frame it in feces.
A non-defined dirt tee is infinitely superior to these 70's Shag disasters. Was Huggy Bear a course designer? Call a Teamster and get some cement!
Fix these two issues, and it will not be just be proximity that will have Branstrom and Flip being placed in the same sentence.
This was the first course I hit on the way to my second trip to Flip City. That I was "going to play Flip in 40 minutes" is the *only* reason I did not go to my car, swap out my water, and walk right back in and play it again. I was floored by the fun factor of this course, and writing this review is making me salivate.
There is no way that I can give this course 4 Discs with the carpet tees. The fact effort was made to put something in that absolutely makes the round more dangerous is a deal killer. This course with dirt tees is a 4 Disc, however.
I loved the unintentional hilarity of having the hole (#13, and my favorite) with the most dangerous grade to climb up/down, sponsored by an insurance company. Just perfect.
I am not unhappy that this course is so far away from me, but that is only because it is so close to Flip. You can bet your butt I will be back.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Very scenic course. while walking to the next tee i actually scared up a pheasant. Great course that makes you work on your shot placement and selection. Lots of elevation changes. You get a workout even if you walk the course and don't throw a disc. Love the fact that hole 16 down the sledding hill is so open that you can just let one fly and see how far it can go.
Cons: Carpeted tee pads for one. most i saw were dirt covered and look really slick. I hate to say it but i actually preferred dirt to these. plus most of the pads were way to short to be effective. i think one was no more then 5 feet long.
navigation was fine till i started towards hole six. saw the sign for 1A decided not to play it due to steep ravine. tried to follow the guide signs to hole six stumble across hole 2A on my way to six played that hole finally found hole six. again had trouble finding my way to hole 8. as i was approaching the tee pad for hole 8 i noticed the basket for hole 4A. backtracked it to the tee. while at the tee for 4A i saw the basket for 3A. didn't feel like backtracking again so i skipped 3A. so apparently i missed the signs directing me to those alternate holes.
some of the descents down the slopes can be really tricky especially on wet ground.
Other Thoughts: I was getting a little flustered trying to navigate the course until i joined another group who has played the course before. then it started to get fun again. I like the downhill shot on 13. it is a challenging course. course starts out like a nice gentle course at first then starts to show its teeth when you get deeper into the woods near the end it opens up and lets you wind down with some nice open grip it and rip it holes.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Barnstorming at Branstrom
Pros: This course will challenge your skills and force you to use all of your shots. A variety of ups and downs and rights and lefts through a fairly scenic piece of forest land make this course an intersting walk.
Cons: Unfortunately this course is a bit heavy on the negatives for me. Right off the bat: carpet tee pads? Didn't appreciate them in a few places where they were more of a hindrance than a help. I would have rather thrown from straight dirt. Also more importantly, it seems like there are quite a few luck dependant "stupid holes" where there are no true paths to take even with a well controlled shot. I spent much of the time wondering how it was possible that there were trees everywhere my disc was. I am a big fan of having fun and I have to say at times out in Fremont fun was the farthest thing from what I was experiencing. Also I didn't find the course very easy to navigate. Had it not been for a local regular that served as our guide, I would likely still be out there trying to find my way out. The alternates need some work. The bathroom was so hard to find. I walked for a mile in search of an outhouse before finding out that I needed to go back to the beginning to find a station that was fairly well hidden along the treeline. If you get a call of nature, you had better have it at the beginning or else keep some tp in your bag because this course is a long hike. Biting flies! My word, you had better bring the deet!
Other Thoughts: I want to like this course but I just want to punch it in the eye right now. I am going to give it another go and hopefully edit my review and give it a bit more sunshine. Hope it was just a really bad day. There were far too many holes that were stupid and luck based for my liking. It just wasn't fun. Fun is what I am all about. It felt more like a chore to finish this round. I really enjoyed myself on the last three holes though. The rest of the way was bloody murder. But this a very good course.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Nice variety of holes. Short Ones, Long Ones
Left Curves Right Curves. etc.
Tough but not too tough. (This may be wrong because I play on this course more then any other.)
Well marked. (again, this may be wrong)
Cons: No concreate tee pads.
The carpet tee pads are sometimes covered with dirt.
After rain the ground will sometimes be boggy.
Not many trash cans along the course.
There are only two restrooms in the park and the only good one is closed most of the time.
Other Thoughts: When you go there the will be a scorecard mailbox. Often it is empty. I have a couple of them and I can xerox them at request.
By the way for those of you who missed the 16th basket there is a reason why.
During the winter kids like to sled down that hill so they remove it so they don't get hurt.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Great variety (Wooded, uphill, downhill, technical, long, open field shots)
- Some nice elevation shots
- Carpet covered tee pads. Different yet for the most part effective.
- High risk/reward with tight fairways and thick rough.
- Most tee signs were adequate with distance, a small picture and par.
- Wooded holes were very scenic and secluded.
- Baskets were in solid condition
Cons: - Lack of birdie opportunities
- Too much "Huck and pray"
- The rough is very unforgiving
- Can get muddy and sloppy after rainfall.
- On some of the tee pads the carpet was pulling up and the pad was lumpy.
- Bugs were bad.
- No water or bathrooms on site.
Other Thoughts: Branstrom is a very challenging course that plays through a variety of terrains. You start in light woods and progress to deeper woods, and finally finish the round with some open field shots. It is very scenic and beautiful and can be a rather strenuous hike in some parts. Branstrom mainly tests your ability to throw 300 ft shots on tight wooded fairways with a few technical holes thrown into the mix. My biggest problem with Branstrom is the lack of birdie opportunities. Most holes were a stretch to get a 3 and the shorter more birdie-able holes were guarded by what some refer to a "jail bars" and birdies were likely results of luck. If you are new to the game or simply can't hit 4 ft wide gaps 200 ft down the fairway luck will have a lot to do with how you finish out a given hole. Please understand that some may look at these ridiculously tight "fairways" and enjoy the challenge, but that is not me and I have rated Branstrom with that in mind.
Overall, it is a course worth playing if you are in the area for Flip City or a different course, but it is not a destination course and can get extremely frustrating. If you do chose to play it, go in with an open mind and a carefree attitude or your round can go sour very quickly.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The layout is exceptional. This time of year the water level is still down quite a bit, so no challenge crossing any streams. No bugs either. A chipmunk did try to mug me for some sunflower seeds, though. I can see why some reviewers complained about the rough, but once again this time of year there is no undergrowth. A brightly colored disc helps out alot, too. Hole 8 I thought was going to be real difficult, but I nearly aced it. Skipped off the top of the pine next to the hole and fell like 2 feet short. Pure luck, but I digress.
Cons: The cut logs and brush that have not been removed were tough to navigate through. The walk to #6 could be improved with a few more encouraging signs. Or you could play the alt holes, and you will end up right on track :). 16 was still missing the basket, so I played to the post on 17's tee. The descent on hole 13 was quite treacherous, a few strategically placed steps might do the trick.
Other Thoughts: A great forest setting with several 'lucky shot' holes. I have not really played that long, but I am a fast learner, and I like to think I have good taste. I gave it a 3.5 because of the unkempt rough in the second half of the course, and the missing basket. The elevation changes and the tight fairways mean you must have some semblance of disc control. This was my first time of many for this course, as I just moved to this town. I got a +12 with one birdie, and 4 par shots
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
SPOTTERS A MUST!
Pros: -SO MUCH VARIETY
-challenging and technical holes
-perfect use of the available terrain
-interesting carpeted/sand bag tees (great traction)
-cool blue plastic tee signs that stand out
-in a very well maintained park
-right down the street from the quaint downtown of Fremont
Cons: -THE ROUGH. UNFORGIVING. NUMERO UNO CON
-course layout super confusing without map
-next hole signs small and miss-able
Other Thoughts: This course is a super tough one to rate. One major pro, and super major con. But lets have at it.
This course is right down the road from downtown Fremont. Easy to find with signs that point the way. The park is well maintained and has bathrooms, picnic places, and a playground. Tee one is easy to find...but there are no maps and this will matter once you hit tee 6 and the alternates start.
VARIETY. Man, more than I have ever played. Through the woods, over creeks, over valleys, down hills, through an open field, around trees, by swamps. This course takes full advantage of the entire park. I could have just walked this course for it's uniqueness...well maybe, ok, no way could I walk by a basket without playing. Lengths range from short to long with well placed baskets. The course designers did this course proud. Word is that Flip City's Bill McKenzie had a hand in designing it.
Ok now, the MAJOR CON. The rough. Thick bushes, cattails by water, fern...every imaginable worst case rough scenario for a course. It's so bad that when I got to tee 3 I had to take a whiz, took five steps off the tee into the ferns, and stepped on a pink orc! It had mud on it so it must have been sitting there for awhile. Hole 7 I helped a kid (also playing alone) look for his tye-dye disc he lost in the brush...
***INTERUPT FOR A DG WARNING-DO NOT USE TYE-DYE IN DEEP ROUGH COURSES-DUH***
...needless to say I was not having a good time because I had never played the course and I was alone. Every other hole I was afraid I would lose a disc on a blind shot. It would take a lot of work to clear the rough but it would make this course an incredible course.
SUMMARY. Such a very cool course worth a visit. It's a short distance from Flip City and would compliment a play if you are in the area. Is it a destination stop like Flip is? no. Is it a course worth considering, indeed it is...and it is only a little elbow grease away from making it a 4 star course.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Does anyone have a map????
Pros: This place is beautiful, with many challenging holes, tons of terrain diversity and setting changes. Tight fairways or crazy doglegs make each hole challenge and loads of fun.
Cons: Navigation between holes and the lack of a map!!!!! The distance (approx 1/4 mile) and lack of trail markers between #5 & #6 is enough to make a novice give up looking and go home. I never could find hole 6a
Other Thoughts: Overall I loved this course and cant wait to play again Please post a map!!!!!
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Holes 2-7 have challenging, Oshtemo-style narrow fairways in deciduous woods in the 250-350 foot range, and also have some of the better tee pads on the course (carpet lined cement, unusual but effective).
Hole 8 is a unique short drive over a ravine in dense woods.
Holes 16 through 18 offer a much needed contrast to the forest holes with drives over short grass.
Hole 16 is a highlight of the course, a grip-and-rip 350 footer from the top of a hill. Hole 18 is by far the longest at 637 feet.
Most baskets in good shape, though one was missing a chain. 24 total holes offer a full two-plus hours of play.
Good signs for all holes with the exception of the alternates. Free admission.
Cons: Lots of thick undergrowth bordering fairways that swallows discs (lost a disc on hole 5).
Navigation is difficult despite the signage.
Many tee pads are dirt, including all of the alternate holes. Holes 8 through 15 are as tightly wooded as Whitehall, but are slightly wetter and muddier. Some of the bluffs along the creek would likely be difficult to traverse in winter.
Course is easier to navigate if you play the alternates, but some holes are difficult to find anyway (8 and 14).
Not many benches after Hole 9. Some locals picnicking on Hole 18 caused some grief and didn't allow a play-through.
Other Thoughts: A nice course worth checking out, and could be first rate with trimming and updated tee pads.
Technical, accurate play offers an advantage. Lots of mosquitos, don't forget the bug spray.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Wide mixture of paths. Well laid out course except for a few holes.
Cons: Plan on walking Branstrom is huge. Ohh and there are lots of bugs. Swampy in some areas.
Other Thoughts: Confusing layout needs to have better markers.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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