14 Helpful / 0 Not
Deer Lakes...and Deer Hills...and Deer Trees...
Pros: Spectacular pro-level 18-hole course set mostly in the woods of a large town (county?) park.
- You're in for a treat from the start - 2 practice baskets night near the parking lot and tees for hole #1
- Ample parking lot, kiosk with course map, flyers, etc.
- 3 concrete tee pads on each hole, beautifully framed and level
- 3 pin locations on each hole, generally grouped close together
- Colorful, detailed tee signs at each pad provide great hole map, tee locations and flight path for each tee, par, distance for that tee and next tee arrow
- Picnic tables (with attached benches) at almost all of the tees (generally in between blue and white tees)
- Mach 3's for all holes plus practice baskets
- Challenge - this course will beat you up because you not only have to have good throws, but you also have to deal with the up and down walks
- For not having much water (1 pond throwover and a couple small/dry creek beds), a few select OB areas added to the difficulty
- Didn't appear to be a high chance for losing discs (well except the damn pond that ate my TL) - not much brush on the sides and most of the fairways were trampled
- Terrific variety - uphill on #1, #8, #10; downhill on #5, #7, #15; down then up on #2, #3, #11, up then down on #13; right on #6; left on #13 - the list goes on and on
- Having multiple "signature holes" is one sign of a true gem - holes #3 with the long down tunnel and #15 with a downhill drive over the end of a pond obviously get a lot of love - I loved hole #7 and could spend all day unloading my bag on that 350' downhill all the way hyzer hole - hole #9 was also terrific with a long hyzer drive into a tree-smattered field, slight left to right approach to a tight opening in the woods, only to have another left turn in the woods with a steep dropoff back/right of the pin
- You dont' get all punishing holes right in a row - after the long, tough #3, you get a nice flat field throw in #4 and then short, downhill at #5 - after long, wooded, uphill #14, you get the awesome downhill pond throw on #15, neat, right to left on #16 and a couple relatively flat holes on #17 and 18
- While I always enjoy wooded courses over open course, I love "grove" holes, with a select smattering of trees in optimal locations creating necessary lines - #4, #7, #9 come to mind
- You're generally off on your own - only a couple spots where I could envision coming near other park-goers, but if you come with family or kids, there are pavillions, playgrounds, fishing ponds, etc. close by
- Water available in a few palces out on the course (refer to the map)
Cons: - Certainly not an overwhelming amount, but for such an overall top notch course, I felt a few holes were throwaways (an unexciting throw across a flat field, etc.) - #12, #17 and #18 come to mind - less than spectacular way to finish your round
- While the next tee arrows on the tee signs were good, it would be nice to have some next tee indications near the baskets in case you forgot to look at the tee sign - navigation was generally fine, regardless (#9 took me a bit to find)
- I know I played it in spring, but this course really seems to hold water (#3, #6, #14, #15, etc.) - I found a little round-about path during my second round on #15 to avoid going down to the lake shore where it was real soggy, but there was no sign for it and ended up soaking my feet during my first round - a little sign to the path would be nice
- While having 3 tee pads is awesome regardless, they are generally just shorter/longer versions of the same line (some are definitely not - #1, #11, etc.) - would be nice to have more variety overall
- Path down to the parking lot after #9 is pretty steep and was very slippery due to mud
- While the pin positions are generally pretty close, it would be nice to have an indication on the tee sign as to what position it's in - would require less walk-ups to see where you're going
- Picky here, but I'm partial to Innova baskets on wooded courses, since the ones without bands/flags can easily blend into the wooded background on longer holes
Other Thoughts: - No trash to be found anywhere on the course
- Course lived up to its name as I saw a deer with 2 babies running through the woods near #3/5/6 and then again crossing the road on #17/18
- I actually felt like I was getting hunted/stalked by bumblebees a couple times
I'm so glad I was able to play this championship level course while I was in Pittsburgh. No question - it makes you work (I was a few over from the whites), but the terrific design and variety make it all worth while. The tees, signs, baskets, etc. are all very refined - kudos and thanks to those who built and maintain this wonderful course.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 17 Not
Pros: Great course with a solid variety of holes. Plenty of long holes through the woods that challenge your distance and accuracy at the same time.
Cons: The course can be very unforgiving, especially for beginners. The lake can also be annoying.
Other Thoughts: While its cool to have water in play on a course, its tough when the water is a marshy wasteland where discs go to die. It isn't really an option to get your disc back if it goes in the water. Technically you aren't even allowed to go in. Even if you do go in, you have to wade through mud and smell like garbage for the rest of the day.
1 of 18 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course has it all. You get a fair mix of tight woods shots and open bombs, an equal blend of straight, left and right, and a lot of elevation change. Every time I play here, I get to throw every mold in my bag! I make it to this course at least twice a week, and it never gets old. I also appreciate that during the summer months, you can always see improvements being made and baskets being moved to keep holes fresh.
Great signage, easy to follow paths, and excellent flat teepads that setup different lines for different skill levels. This is how a course is meant to be run.
Cons: Well there aren't really any in my eyes. Hole 15 over the water seems to eat a lot of people's discs, so I wouldn't be surprised that others dislike this one. I just bring some old junker disc to toss here and if it goes in the drink, not a big loss.
Other Thoughts: This really is one of the Crown Jewels of the Pittsburgh area. If I didn't live near by, I would still drive quite a ways to play this course frequently. I wish it had 9 more holes, as there is still plenty of land.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 9 Not
Challenging At First - Easier The Second Time Around
Pros: There are A LOT of pro's to this course!! 1: Its challenging yet fun! Lots of up's & down's, around's & through's. 2: Its very beautiful & scenic! A few wide open, grassy meadows & hilltop views of the bright blue sky! 3: Its rarely crowded. Enough said. 4: You face obstacles you won't find at other courses. The 2nd time through you will do much better!
Cons: I'm not a big fan of the 15th Hole with the water hazard. We lost a disc in there our 1st time through the course.
Other Thoughts: Overall.... this is one of coolest courses I have seen in the Pittsburgh area! I've played Schenley Park, Knob Hill & Philips Park. Playing this course makes me better each time I go back and play the others.
Don't get disappointed if you have a rough go on your 1st time, you will improve the next time, I promise! Everyone in my group did. Just stay focused & don't get down on yourself if you have a bad hole. You will eventually LOVE this course more than you love chocolate milk! :)
2 of 11 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Solid and Enjoyable Course
Pros: I took my kid (she's nearly 10 but the size of a 6-year-old) and wife and except for the tantrums on a few holes because the kid was scared to walk down a few slopes (kids are soft these days! :D), we all had a great time.
The course has red, white, and blue tee pads that are all ample sized concrete slabs. I have a short-run-up when I x-step and they were at least twice as long as needed.
The signage on the course is great. The tee signs clearly show where the next tee is and most holes have an arrow pointing you towards the next tee.
The multiple tees offer not just the same shot but different angles, which was nice.
The undergrowth is kept to a minimum which allowed for relatively easy finding of discs as well as skip shots and other things that use the ground. There are not too many trees - just the right amount to punish bad shots and reward good lines.
The elevation changes work into the design of the holes *beautifully*. The second hole is a great example of this, and many pins are tucked onto slopes.
I've only played here once but the multiple basket locations are varied on each hole, which is great and will keep the course "fresh" for many, many rounds.
OB is clearly marked on the tee signs AND in most cases marked on the ground with white stakes and even some rope or string. Awesome.
Great scenery. We didn't see much wildlife but the hills are nice and though we could hear other players, we didn't see them more than once or twice. You feel like you have the course to yourself.
There are variations in hole design, from those in the woods the whole way to those in the open the whole way to those, like the ninth, that start in the open with a big bomb and end in the woods. Great variety.
Even though we're all new to disc golf, all three of us found the course challenging but fair. We had a great time.
Cons: Really nit-picky here because this course is pretty darn good. If I could give it a 4.75 I would, but it's not *perfect* so I have to choose 4.5.
Some of the lower holes get pretty damp, but that's just how water works - it goes downhill.
The signs pointing you towards 7 after 6 could be a *little* more specific, and after 9 to 10 as well.
A few of the slopes MAYBE could use some steps, but again, that's mostly because my kid hasn't been in the woods very much. :)
Uhhh... Yeah. That's about it. Like I said, really nit-picky.
Other Thoughts: The PDGA app, oddly, has this course with 18 par threes. I shot +26 or something like that according to the PDGA app, and that's not right. I submitted the proper pars but I don't know if that matters.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 78 Not
Pros: ~ well maintained
~ concrete tee pads
~ well marked with signs
~multiple pin locations
~ multiple tee pads
~ 2 9 hole loops from parking lot
~ many parking lots to start at different holes if busy
~ good mix of open and wooded holes
Cons: ~ muddy at times...bring your waders
~ poorly designed stretch on back 9 (13-15)
~ could be a physical challange to walk if older or have health issues
~ hard to tell pin locations
~ fan boyz sending me threatening PMs about my reveiw
~ back 9 could of been layed out better....wouldve like to seen 27 holes with land used
7 of 85 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 17 Not
Fantastic Western PA Course
Pros: The course has great signs and great tee pads. Good baskets. Great long holes through the woods. Has elevation changes. The signs help you navigate the course with ease going from one hole to the next.
Cons: Has one hole where you have to throw across a lake and there are low hanging trees which will knock your disc into the lake. Very risky shot from the white tees. The course takes a long time to play but it is such a good course that really does not matter.
Other Thoughts: Some of the out of bounds is unclear. This course is definitely worth driving 45 minutes or making a special trip for because it uses the land well and is one of the best courses in PA if not the best one. The course takes a long time to play but it is such a good course that really does not matter.
1 of 18 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 15 Not
Pros: This course is excellent! It has many challenging shots and is very fun! The holes vary in difficulty and lengths. The course is well maintained. I like what they have done with the cement tee pads.
Cons: As with other reviews, the only thing I find a problem with this course is that there are 3 different cage placements an no indication on where the cage will be.
0 of 15 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 6 Not
One of the greats
Pros: The course is layed out well and has a ton of variety to the shots. If you didnt play the course it would make an excellent hike as this is probably the most tiring course I have ever played. There are funny signs on the course that says Knob Hill 20 miles, Moraine 30 miles, with a direction they are in. I played all three courses and they were all fantastic. It has been a couple weeks so I can't give a very detailed review but I can assure that this is one of the bests courses and is a must play.
Cons: There are only 4 or 5 comparable courses here in Michigan! So the con is that its 6 hours away :o.
The only other con, and this is for all three courses, is that there are three pin placements and no way of telling which one unless you can see the basket or walk the hole.
Other Thoughts: Since this course is so tiring I would not recommend playing this course and moraine in the same day. I would do moraine and Knob in the same day or deer lakes and knob. Moraine is just as tiring and awesome, you want to be at your best for both courses.
I wish I kept score with a card but my friend I just played doubles.
The best camping ground we found after 3 hours of driving was Breakneck campground right next to moraine on cheeseman road. It was $8/ night per person with tent. My moraine review gives greater detail on where the campground is.
5 of 11 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: 18 baskets with three pin positions. Nice tee signs at each of the three concrete tees. Great variety of hole distances, pars, and open vs wooded holes. Excellent use of the rolling elevation, water and terrain. Beautifully manicured fairways and scenery. Rough is not too rough so disc loss potential is low except for the pond. Two loops of nine holes back to the parking lot. Benches and picnic tables a plenty around the tees. Restrooms and water scattered around the park.
Cons: No signage to know which pin the basket is in. This would be easily fixed with some letters, wood hooks, and a moveable lock(or even zip tie) to locate the pin position. Navigation a little tricky in places, but not too bad.
Other Thoughts: Deer Lakes is certainly a top tier DGC and you can't miss if you play here coming from just about anywhere. This course is well suited for just about any type of player from beginner looking to get more competitive to a world class player looking to challenge their game. The whole Pittsburgh area is really sick! When is World's coming to town? I really enjoyed Deer Lakes, but a few minor things that kept me from giving a five disc rating(I've only given a five to Paw Paw). Not knowing which pin the basket is in, and also the alternative pin placements don't seem to change many shots. It'd be nice to have a little more separation between some of the holes. The variety of holes is pure excellence, however I feel the last two holes end a little weak. I think if hole 18 went bigger downhill that might have iced an fiver for me. Maybe it's just a peeve of mine to end with a more epic hole. With all that minor bitching aside I'd highly recommend anybody come play here, it's probably one of the best courses you'll ever play!
10 of 16 people found this review helpful.
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