5 Helpful / 0 Not
Difficult 18 holes
Pros: This course has a lot of variety. Also lets you air it out in several places. Holes in the woods have some very majestic looking trees. First hole has an enormous tree intersecting the fairway, about 10 feet above ground. This is a really cool looking hole, and I can see why they tried to keep two holes in this area.
Cons: Somewhat tough to navigate your first time. Even the printable map is a bit inaccurate in 2-3 places. With the map, you should be O.K. however. Two holes are labeled as Pro par 4's. Holes 7 & 9 are both 700 ft of wide open driving, followed by a somewhat demanding second or third shot.
Other Thoughts: Finally got around to playing all 18 holes in the order they are supposed to be played in. Home course being Dretzka, I'll shoot a -2 to +2 there. My first round at Brown Deer today was a +22. That's right.... Granted, I was on my lunch break, and hurried through it solo, I found it very tough to park my second shot withing 25 feet of the pin. This is a course you'll want to put at least two hours aside to play.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Wooded challenge - nuf said
Pros: This course has lots of woods and lots of distance. I love this combination. Besides just lots of woods, there are some very unique and majestic trees here. On 14-16 there are many red pines that are shaped like giant banzai trees. Throughout the park there are huge majestic pines, oaks, and maples.
The wooded holes here offer extreme challenge through tight tunnels with tough rough on either side and a canopy overhead. Of note are holes 1, 12, and 16 which offer some pretty good distance through very tight corridors. Other wooded holes are a bit shorter and offer diversity with left and right balance.
There is a small muck hole on #4 but it isn't much of a unique water hazard.
Hole 7 and 9 let you air it out with 500'+ length, although 7 is pretty bland.
The use of multiple pin placements (2-3) seems to be a Milwaukee staple, and offers great variety.
The crowds here are far less than at Dretzka. The course is extremely more challenging than Dineen and Dretzka. There are alternate pin placements but just one tee.
Cons: Just one tee. In a city park like this with lots of ability to draw local younger players who can walk or bike, and also families, dual tees are a huge benefit to newcomers and ams to get them more interested in the sport, rather than tackling such a hge challenge from the long tees, and/or hoping pin placements are short.
There are a few holes which lack character and give you the same ol' feel of playing in a city park (#10 & 11 mostly). The signs are very neat, little mini-Milwaukee County parks signs on every tee. However they do not have distance or any depiction of the hole (UPDATE - some local player took it upon himself (or herself, or themselves) to make very nice hand painted depictions of the hole along with distances to all pins - VERY NICE!).
It is a bit difficult to find #1 so you'll have to look, finding some other holes could be difficult your first time too. The concrete tees are pretty poorly installed. Apparently the county would not allow deeper excavation due to tree roots. Thus, tees are slightly elevated and there is a lip on all sides which you could roll an ankle on. They are also not extermely long (the best concrete pads are like landing strips, but not these). The woodchips along the edges do little to help the problem.
As with any city of Milwaukee course, trash is a major problem.
There is not much elevation here, and not even good use of many of the sharper changes in elevation or more unique terrain except the ridge in the woods for hole 16. Greens here are lacking good risk, and are old school style wide open for the most part.
The use of multiple pins impedes the ability to judge how well you've thrown relative to other rounds because the combinations are endless (pins move seemingly without reason or pattern, unlike alternating even-short, odd-long, for example). For a 'numbers geek' like me, this annoys me a bit not being able to compare round to round because the layout changes every day.
Other Thoughts: I truly believe this is the Milwaukee course avid disc golfers should play. It offers more challenge and more variety than the other courses imo. The course is mostly flat, even flatter than Dretzka, but uses some of the few ridges in the park. There is not much of a water hazard here either. It would be nice if the trash was kept up (yeah we know the useless and worthless litterers won't help any). Without drastic elevation, water, and OB uniqueness, and being in the middle of a big city without the quiet and beautiful peacefulness of a remote setting, I can't rate the course higher.
My rating is based slightly on personal opinion that I like this best of all Milwaukee courses, but relative to my other reviews and favorites, a 4 is fitting for Brown Deer, not quite a 4.5 but definitely one of my favorite 3.5-4 disc courses.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
A Top-Notch Course In a Top-Notch Park
Pros: 1. Variety. Holy crap, do you need to have EVERY shot in your arsenal to score well out here! Tight wooded corridors (early and late trouble), long open holes, doglegs, gentle elevation, blind shots, and more will challenge even a seasoned veteran.
2. Beautiful, well-manicured park. Brown Deer is a HUGE park, very well-cared for, and your first visit here will likely net a few surprises. Awesome variety of trees and wildlife, mowed and trimmed fairways, just a very scenic area. I think I remarked, "Man, what a beautiful park!" 6 or 7 times throughout my round.
3. Concrete tees. You'll need a stable, reliable teeing surface on most of these holes, which the course designers were considerate enough to include.
4. Trash cans/tables at every tee. This feature can never be underappreciated in a heavily used park. There were actually several trash cans at many holes, and people seem to use logic and separate their trash and recyclables. Awesome.
5. Probably the most challenging course I've played in this part of the state. The tight wooded holes aren't just finesse shots where you can take an easy 2...you've gotta be on point (or very lucky) to get anywhere close on your tee shot. Even if your drive manages to weave through without hitting many trees, chances are your approach will wind up leaving you with many more trees to navigate in the last 40 or 50 feet, so play smart. Not a course for a round of speed golf.
Cons: 1. Signage, or lack thereof. While there is a nicely sculpted wooden sign at every tee, there are no directional signs telling you where to go after you hole out, and it can be confusing walking from 2 to 3, as well as in a few other areas. Also, there is no hole layout indicated on the signs, which can sometimes be confusing (for example, Hole #6 is a sharp dogleg right, but the basket of #9 is the only thing visible off the tee, and we almost shot to that basket had it not been for the help of some friendly locals to steer us in the right direction). Bring a course map!
2. The longest holes are also just wide open, very little risk/reward involved, just a few big-arm throws to take a 3 or 4 (the latter in my case, which I was content with).
3. It would have been awesome to see some water holes out here, or maybe have them utilize some of the bigger elevation in the transition holes (7-10), but I can't really complain. I wasn't even wishing for that DURING my round; I just had to think of another "con" to place here, but I guess it's more of an afterthought/suggestion.
Other Thoughts: I went out with my wife and kids, and while they enjoyed the beauty of the park and walking through the woods, it was an extremely frustrating course for them. I'm not saying to avoid bringing the family with, but make sure you can occupy your children with something if they're not REALLY into disc golf. This is a long, extremely challenging course that requires thought and planning for nearly every shot. Don't expect to just "wing it" and take a decent score.
UPDATE: In retrospect, this course falls a bit short of the other 4.5s I have played in the last 3 years, so I am adjusting my rating (not the review, at least until I get back to play again) to reflect this perspective.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
A for Awesome!
Pros: What I personally like and how this course stacks up:
1) Holes with good risk/reward. Fair, but harsh punishment for bad decisions or execution. == A (Overall, the wooded holes are superb! Even the open holes have tricky approaches to the pin that can punish you hard for lack of execution. I mark down this category from an A+ to an A since 5 & 14 present too much "poke and hope" dumb luck.)
2) Holes that have rewarding birdie opportunities for me. I throw 300' accurately, 360' max. == A+ (This course was designed for me!....and people of my skill level. 5 & 15 are a little too easy to be really rewarding deuces, but that is more than made up for by the rest of the course.)
3) More wooded than open - lots of variety of shots required caused by hole shape and topography == A (Great variety of holes that take perfect throws along a typical flight path, but also a lot that force creatively weird yet make-able flight paths. Terrain and water are the only things missing.)
4) Natural beauty (Appalachian beauty preferred) and seclusion. == A- (There is a county club feeling to this course - nice!)
5) Bonus points for multi-shot holes with defined landing zones, good risk/reward and multiple options to play them. == B- (Hole 6 is the best - an incredible S shaped hole that requires a well placed drive off a wide open tee, but then a very touchy approach to a wooded basket. 7 is a little ho-hum although the trees near the basket add a little punishment and force you to make a loooong drive if you want an easy birdie 3. Ditto on 9, but the dense shrubbery near the basket will exact even more punishment for errant approaches than the trees on 7. The only thing missing on the course in the multi-shot area is 1-3 more good dogleg holes.)
It's all about feeding the addiction, so I ranked this course subjectively based on my own "personal addiction factor". The grades above tell how well the course will draw me back to itself again and again and again. Since I have played a decent number of courses (125 18-hole, 64 9-hole as of mid 2009), my hope is that players/explorers who have similar addiction tastes will find my ratings list helpful as they choose courses to play and explore.
I fully expect others with different tastes/philosophies to disagree with me....that's the fun of things here. See my profile for my rating philosophy.
Check out this video I made for a friend of mine in honor of his 1020 rated final round in AM Worlds 2007. It gives a good feel for the course: http://www.charlottedgc.com/f...WithHenry.wmv
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Bring A Flannel Shirt, You're Going LumberJacking
Pros: A painted post at every tee. All concrete pads. Baskets in mostly good shape. Course mowed regularly.
From the first hole to the last, this course will push the limits of your distance and control, often at the same time. Most of the holes are 3-able, except for the two monster 4's. For many of the holes, its a stretch to make par. Often two good drives are needed, or a good, laser-accurate drive through trees followed by a long uphsot. There are several birdies opportunities here, on at least 7 holes, but accuracy and at least moderate length are required to give yourself a chance. Usually you need a big (300+), strategically placed drive to set this up.
One thing I appreciate about this course is that parking the basket from the tee is not a given goal, as you see all too often on many courses. Birdies are available, but not easy, and many holes are extremely hard to deuce. You won't hear "ace run" and "Brown Deer" in the same sentence, because this course has no freebies. You will tee off with a driver on every hole here, and you will need accuracy to shoot well. The shule is thick and punishing, and the holes are too, and there are lots of trees to hit. Several holes will force quite specifically shaped shots to weave through the trees. The tunnels here are some of the hardest I've played, probably in part because they are so long. This course also forces some long curved tunnels as well, which is both challenging and interesting.
This is one of the top five hardest courses I've ever played, eclipsed by the likes of Justin Trails Big Brother & Oak Meadow Park (TX).I think it's no coincidence it also ranks among the longest as well.
Despite a lack of extreme terrain, this course is not flat, and delivers several holes where elevation is a factor, including the giant hill on hole 7's fairway, and the downhill slope of the following hole. However, those are just side notes to the bread and butter of this course, distance and trees. While most courses will cut you a break on length on the more technical heavily wooded sections, this course gleefully torments you with long, technical holes, and mostly longer open holes. This course uses distance as an effective weapon, forcing players to control distance drives, a difficult combo to be sure, and is always waiting to punish you when you let a wild one get away from you.
You will need to curve your long range drivers both directions, throw straight, and shape shots through some narrow tree routes to shoot effectively on this course. If you fail to do even one of these things, you are in for a frustrating round. I shot a +16, and still felt like I played pretty well, so get excited about par's here.
This course will push you, and takes awhile to play. If you are tired of throwing midranges off the tee, this is your spot. Plenty of chances to rip it in wide open fields, and plenty more to try to shoot one through the gauntlet.
Several of the holes on this course are technical and challenging enough that they would be signature holes on most courses, but here, they are the standard. Not that the holes blur together, but they are just all that hard, so no single one sticks out. Holes one and two are quite hard to start off with, but this course never switches to autopilot.
Cons: While most of the wooded holes are tricky and quite interesting, the open holes in the field area, including the two 600ft ones, are all wide open and pretty boring. They are just that, long open holes, with no intrigue and little strategy. To me, it feels like this course has a few too many of that type of hole. Distance prevails on this course. blah.
Signage. After driving around the park trying to figure out where to park, I found hole 3. I looked and didn't find hole 1 or 2, not realizing they were across the street. There is no course map at the start, and the first two holes being separate from the rest of the course was a bit confusing. Plus, Tee 1 is hidden behind the tired-looking tennis courts without any signs or arrows pointing towards it.
The tee signs are simply posts with a neat leaf decal and the hole number on them, nothing else. This got frustrating after the first few holes, since I was sometimes not sure where the next teepad was, or what basket to shoot on, especially once I got out into the field, where you can see about 4 different baskets, none of which are numbered.
(HINT: Shoot at the one furthest to the right first. A few holes later you'll end up shooting at the second from the right basket, then third from the right, and so on.)
I would've liked to have at least known the distances of the holes before throwing, but the signs don't even have that.
Also, the fact that there were only one set of teepads was a bit of a letdown to me. Not that this course needs longer teepads, and every hole is well-designed to be played from the current tees, and I'm not sure you could install short tees that dont just eliminate the fun of these holes (an ailment Beaver Dam suffers from), but the added variety would've added to the replay value.
Also, some of the locals said there were alt pins on at least some holes, some of them EVEN longer than the current placements, which they just use for tournaments. Ok, but it seems like it would be nice if there were even two pin placements they switched it between for regular play as well, like many lesser courses have.
Yes, this course is long, and that does make it tougher. It also has many technical holes, most of which are also longer. This is like a regular course, just stretched. The technical wooded tunnel shots that would be 200ft on most courses are 250+ here (im guessing, since there are no marked distances on the signs), so often 3's evoke a sigh of relief. At even harder courses like Justin Trails Big Brother, you shoot over par on a hole because the holes are technical and difficult, here you shoot over because they are fairly technical and long. There's a difference, and this course uses length almost as a crutch at times (holes 7 & 9)
Another thing to watch out for on this course is drainage. After a rain, this course holds water, and has lots of muddy areas. Even the times I've got in a water hazard after a disc, I'm not sure I got much muddier that I did playing here. There is only standing water in a few bad spots, but the ground is gets soggy everywhere, and clumps on your shoes, if you wear something with grip like hiking boots. It was annoying to scrape off my shoes several times each round, but this is not the worse drainage I've seen on a course (see: Tom Bass, Agnes Moffitt, TC Jester - Houston, TX)
After everything I had heard about this course, it being the best one in Milwaukee, super-hard, and so on, I was surprised, and a bit disappointed by the basic nature of this course's amenities, compared to Dretzka.
If this course was as well maintained as Dretzka, with hole maps, dual tees, and even just two pin positions per hole, and maybe some more intrigue on the 600ft holes, this could be an amazing course. As it stands now, its a beast, but not quite as much fun or nice as Drezka, in conclusion. Its still a close second though, for all the tricky and unique wooded holes contained herein
Other Thoughts: Most courses have that one hole. You know, the longer hole that's still pretty technical in some way, the one that shipwrecks or saves many a round.At Dretzka it's Hole 17, at Parkside its Hole 16, at Acorn Park its Hole 9, . This course keeps heaping on more and more of those holes until your head spins, like a monkey sitting in a tree throwing wrenches at you while you tee off. It's a great thing about this course, but sometimes it seems a little excessive. Many of the holes here, if they were 50 ft shorter, would still be hard, so sometimes it feels like overkill, but some course had to hold the title of hardest course in Milwaukee, and Brown Deer is the undisputed Heavyweight Champion, like Andre the Giant in contrast with midget Valley View, on the other end of the length spectrum. Welcome to Brown Deer, meet the 800 lb gorilla.
Many people would say this is the toughest and best course in milwaukee. I only agree with half of that statement, just because Dretzka is so good across the board that it edges out BD for best.
IMO this course has 14-15 cool holes, that are mostly quite technical and challenging.
Then there's wide open 6, 7, & 9
6 is longish and forgettable
9 is super long, but forgettable
7 is boring wide open at the start and middle, but the pin is in an interesting stand of trees next to a giant hill, which makes it alrite.
I've got no problem with open holes. The lone 600ft monster at Anna Page is okay. But not two of them in one course (plus another wide open hole).
However, the details are mainly what hold back this course, the signage in particular. This is not an FTF course, and as difficult as it is to boot, that makes it extra non-FTF. Most courses, even some of the more challenging ones, I feel like I could bring a novice player, and they would enjoy it. Not this one. If this course is just an exercise in frustration for you, you're not ready, mentally and/or skill-wise. But for players with some experience, this is a good place to test your mettle, and get a good reminder what humble pie tastes like, when this course gives you a face full of it.
CAUTION: Wear close-toed shoes on this course. Many of the wooded holes, #2 in particular, are full of small stumps that would be easy to stub toes or roll ankles on, so WATCH YOUR STEP.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Brown Deer is without question the best disc golf offering in Milwaukee if you are seeking a challenge. The first two holes are very intimidating and set the tone for the course. Holes 7 and 9 make you bring out the big guns each at well over 600 feet across a valley. After a couple of a holes out in the open you return to chutes in the woods that are manageable but very challenging.
The course is in a great location in a beautiful park, and is very well maintained. There are concrete pads and signs denoting the hole number at each hole. It is probably the least crowded of all the Milwaukee courses and waiting has never been an issue.
Cons: There are a few downsides to Brown Deer most of which could be fixed with relative ease. Mostly being course navigation and tee signs that show the distance and location of the pin. Unfortunately there are also no water hazards or much elevation change to speak of.
Other Thoughts: All in all Brown Deer provides a varied, challenging, and fun disc golf experience, and is a must play if in the Milwaukee area.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 6 Not
Fan and challenge in Milwaukee
Pros: The magical forest... A lot of course goes through tall trees with minimal low brush which makes it easy to find retrieve discs. some tight squeezes and some grip and rippers.
Cons: very minimal elevation change and no water hazards for extra entertainment. Other than that you can't really complain about this well kept course.
Other Thoughts: Very quality course.
0 of 6 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 1 Not
Best course in Milwaukee
Pros: 1) This is by far the best overall course in Milwaukee in my opinion. It has most ingredients that I factor in when evaluating courses.
2) Lots of challenges forcing accurate shot making and less power (except the couple of wide open holes across the field.
3) Even though most of the holes run through the woods, they each have their own special character. Well positioned trees create forced shotmaking skills. This always adds to the fun factor and challenge.
4) Some holes go left to right, some go right to left, some are dead straight, but they all require some thought before you tee off. The straight ones are not necessarily easy either because of trees guarding the baskets, or the two wide open ones are so darn long they are definitely not par 3's for most players of the game.
5) Nice concrete tee pads, nice baskets, and nice wood signs indicating hole helping with navigation. (It would be nice to have a hole layout and distance on the very nice signs. They are true to the Milwaukee County Signage with Brown painted posts and signs with yello writing. it is their character (poop brown wow who thought of that back in the day)
6) Massive swing in distance between longest and shortest. Over 700' on one hole and 660' on another, down to one hole under 200 at about 185'. That really will change the discs you want to throw which makes it more fun.
7) Massive course in a massive park. The disc golf is pretty well shielded from other activites except one or two holes that open up into an open field. on a nice sunny day I would imagine people out in this field, and also some soccer fields on another hole or two, other than that the disc golf course has its own property basically.
Cons: 1) The two holes #7 and #9 are long yes, but they do not have much character. They were very boring fo a guy who can't throw much over 2225-250' Basically just throw two of those a nice upshot and a putt. It isn't challenging at all for my skill level because I know it will take me 2-3 shots to get even close enough for a putt. It might be better if I had more power and could throw closer to the basket.
2) Would be very buggy in summer I am sure because of the woods and wetter environment.
3) There are a couple of the tight wooded holes that appear to have nearly impossible shots. Ones that have two direction changes at points where there are no discs that turn that quickly one way then back the other way. I will play it more often and update this con then, but a couple of the shots appeared almost impossible to throw without hitting a tree and slamming into the ground, or shooting left or right off the fairway.
Other Thoughts: Very slight difference keeps this course from being a 4.5. I have played 3 other course I rated 4.5 and this is only missing a few things 1) A sign directing you where to park and where hole #1 is. 2) tee signs with maps and distance rather than just the hole #, 3) elevation change, 4) water in play (I do not consider the water on hole #4 as in play)
All in all this is by far the best course I have played to date in the Milwaukee area. It has the most elements that i incorporate into my reviews. I wish there was some elevation change and maybe a little more water in play. There certainly are a few places that could take an alternate pin like on he mound left of #8 instead of down to the right in the woods. I think #10 is the one that finished right back by a small creek, I would like to see a basket across the stream to bring more water into play. The hole is short enough it would certainly add some more character.
15 of 16 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Challenging course for all players, this course has a great combination of tight wooded holes and long ripper holes. All of the discs and throws you have will be needed to do well here.
-Concrete pads are in great shape
-CHALLENGING - I say it again - this course keeps me coming back because even when I shoot a 'great' round there is always something I could have done better - this course really will hone your skills, I enjoy the test of my abilities.
-The different pin locations make this course completely different depending on where they are. It's almost like an entirely different course when the locations have changed. This is a huge plus in my book
Cons: -A little hard to find the first hole. (it's in the back of the tennis courts)
-Signage could be better, I'd advise following someone or bringing a friend who has played it before if you are a first time player of this course
-Don't wear sandals - many small stumps and very rarely there are geese in the field that leave crap behind
-Doesn't stay up for the winter
Other Thoughts: -This is a beast of a course that will really make you pay for mistakes and reward you for risks, especially in the wooded holes.
-Not a beginner course
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
BEAST of BD
Pros: Challenging Long Course..If you like chucking you will enjoy Brown Deer..Mix of Extremes from tight wooded and technical for the first 5 then opens up and lets you Rip! 2 holes of 700+ ft..then finishes back in the woods..Beautiful in the fall..Not crowded on the weekdays at all..You rarely play up on anyone..
Cons: Still a young course only a little over a year old so shes still rustic..Some stumps, dont wear Sandals!
Other Thoughts: Plenty of other things to do..Just a huge plot of land..Tennis courts and soccer fields..a great pavillion, and even a playground for the kiddies..The course follows a road around so if others are on the tee just walk a little ways and tee off at another hole..
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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