Morraine on the Brain
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: It's been over a year since the last review on Morraine State Park, and I'm here to say it's still outstanding. Very challenging, layout with extreme elevation changes at times, some very dense woods that are mainly on the back 9, long distance on several, and after rain, a little water too. Each hole has multiple staggered rubber tees, and signs to help you out. The Mach 3 baskets are still in great condition. From the first hole to the last, interesting technical throws, not repetitive on any stretch. A little more open in some spots, usually at least some elevation change, and requires consistent accuracy. This course is truly outstanding, as so many people have indicated before me. I won't get too into details, but 15 is sick. The fewest trees of any hole, giving a fantastic view of the lake, over 850' from the long tee and way down hill. Two boomers and one putt if you do it right, I had to take an short approach from the rough near the basket, and made a four. 18 is a mother of a final hole, with a lot of trees, that knocked my disc straight into the muddy water in front of the basket. The whole park was very scenic and free of litter.
Cons: There was recent rain leaving behind mud, quite a bit on the last hole. No camping in the park. Leash law in effect.
Other Thoughts: A terrific place for disc golfing, and utilizing th land perfectly. There is very little weakness in this course. Unforgiving, but presents such a great challenge. A must play if you can make it, worth traveling to. I played one round, and went for 76 (+10). Would have loved to try and improve on that, repeatedly. Just not enough time to play it more than once.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
One of PA's Best
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Quite simply this course is VERY close to being a 5.0 in my book. I have played this course three times and every time the rating increases in my mind. I would actually rate this course somewhere between a 4.5 and 4.75. I have given 4.5 ratings to courses such as Idlewild, Deer Lakes, Warwick and others. I would actually rate this course ahead of Deer Lakes and Tyler State Park and just behind Idlewild and Warwick. This course is perhaps the second best course in PA and that's saying a lot considering the wonderful abundance of courses located in PA. Here are my pros:
1) Three sets of tees offer three very different courses, ranging from 5800 feet to the championship level tees at 8200 feet. I have not played the shorter tees but took a good look at them the last time I played. It appears that all three sets of tees offer vastly different playing experiences, which is what you want with multiple tees.
2) This course, maybe better than any course I have ever played, offers multiple options to the basket. This course is not an open course by any means but the course was designed in such a way that doesn't constrict you to throwing a specific shot. A lot of the holes have multiple obstacles in the fairway that doesn't provide for "one" defined fairway but multiple fairways. Some may think this allows for luck shots but it really doesn't. The perfect example of his is hole 6 from the back tees. There are multiple, distinct options on this hole that offer very different challenges. Hole 9 may even be a better example. Even though its a short hole there is no "true" fairway in that you have to throw an exact line to get to the basket. The hole allows you to throw a higher shot, a lower RH flick shot, a turnover or even a roller. This is disc golf design at its finest.
3) Does it get any better than holes 6 and 15? In particular, hole 15 is not only a signature hole on the course but one of the most scenic disc golf holes I have ever played. I am not sure it gets any better than throwing down that huge hill with the lake in the background. Its a monster par 4 that is such a memorable hole. Hole 6 is also a true signature hole. Its 934 feet of greatness from the back tee with multiple options to the basket. It can make or break a round. Great courses have great holes but to be a 4.5 or better course you need to have holes that stand out as being some of the best in the country. Moraine State Park has at least two holes that say "this is one of the best courses in the country."
4) This course has phenomenal variation. The aforementioned hole 15 is a fairly open HUGE bomber hole that allows you to air out a disc. Hole 16 is a shorter hole than 15 but is potentially the hardest hole on the course. Its a SUPER challenging, uphill par 5 through the woods. So you go from being downhill and open to uphill and tight. This course is not all about distance, either. There are 8 par 3's that give you some chances at deuces. So even though this course is very challenging there are some chances for deuces. The course really has some nice variety between wooded and open holes.
5) The tee signs are marvelous. They point out the potential lines, distances, etc. This is a huge plus for me as they are extremely detailed.
6) One of the great things about PA is that the state allows disc golf in state parks. This allows for some significant beauty. The park is manicured VERY well and has some gorgeous scenery. Its tough not to enjoy yourself in this park as the holes are really beautiful.
7) I try to mention the non disc golf things the park offers and this one has some good ones. I am a huge fan of beaches and after playing a round in the 90 degree weather who wouldn't love a beach? Its literally a 700 foot walk to the beach so that's a huge plus for me.
Favorite Hole Not Mentioned Above: One of my favorite holes on the course is hole 7. Your tee shot actually overlooks some tree-tops and its actually a shorter hole. You can thread a shot under the tree tops and get a little lucky with a skip and have a jump putt or you can hyzer bomb it HIGH over the trees and hope to be in the circle. This course is what makes Moraine a great course: it gives you options!
Cons: Its tough to find much here in terms of cons. Honestly this course is an immaculate course and my cons are nitpicky. I can't quite give the course a 5.0 rating because in my opinion its a slight step below other courses I have rated a 5.0 (Flyboy, Highbridge, Nockamixon) but don't let that take anything away from the course. Here are my cons:
1) This isn't a huge deal but the teepads are rubber. This isn't a huge con for me because every time I have played this course it has been VERY dry but its worth mentioning.
2) From what I could tell and read there are no tee signs for the white tees.
3) Some of the rough was very punishing. Obviously I would tell you to stay out of the rough but hole 15 in particular has some of the roughest rough on the course. I did lose a nice disc to the right of hole 15's basket and looked 15 minutes and found a disc the next time I played. I think during a tournament this hole will probably have a spotter so its not a huge deal during a tournament but during a casual round I would advise playing with someone and talking turns spotting on this hole and a few others. Because its a downhill second shot there are some significant opportunities for the disc to glide.
Other Thoughts: Between Deer Lakes and Moraine State Park the disc golf in the Greater Pittsburgh Area is extremely solid on the top end. Moraine State Park is a true gem and honestly I would travel 2 hours out of my way to play this course. It can certainly get hot playing in the summer so bring lots of water.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Best Course in Western PA
Pros: This course is a beautiful 18 hole course, located in an equally beautiful and very quiet state park. This is a pretty low traffic course, especially compared to others in the area (looking at you Knob Hill). There are three tee pads and three pin placements for each hole (One basket, 3 possible placements). The holes are well marked, with the trickiest being the transition between 10 and 11 (if you aren't paying attention you'll start playing #4 again)
The course is very well kept and you can tell the course maintainers are very active. Towards the end of this past summer (2013), they trimmed back a huge amount of thick brush on a few holes, most notably hole 15. This drastically improved the enjoyment of this hole, since its one of the few holes where you can really let one fly. It also allowed the B and C placements for hole 15 to be used. I believe that all 18 holes now have three available placements making it a unique experience every time the basket location is changed.
Every single hole on this course is a quality hole. There are only 8 holes that could potentially be aced from the white or blue tee pads (1,3,5,7,9,11,13,17) although when the holes are configured in the more difficult placement, this number would be 4-5. There are no throwaway holes here. None of them seem cheap or repeated, and there are no gimmicky mandos. This course was designed from the gold tees and it shows. The longer tees never feel tacked on, and offer a good variety to the course after working your way up from the whites.
6 - A long fairway split in two by a stand of pine trees. It will require you to throw tight lines while covering a long distance. For beginners and experienced players this hole will test your course management skills. If you birdie this hole, it will be something you can be proud of.
7 - You overlook the treetops and a small clearing with the basket sitting below. You have two options, throw a hyzer bomb over the tree tops and drop it near the basket, or thread a shot under the branches for a long putt or a short upshot.
15 - The signature hole. A long right then left S-Curve with a drop in elevation of about 50ft halfway through. Spectacular view of Lake Arthur from the tee pads, and one of the few opportunities to really grip it and rip it.
18 - The final hole is also one of the most technical and interesting holes. There are two OB creek beds that break up the fairway. From the tee you have the option to lay up before the first creek, or try to clear the gap. Once across, two of the placements require a skilled and careful upshot to avoid the second OB gully located behind or in front of the basket (depending on pin placement).
Your course management skills will be tested here. You will be forced to select the right disc and type of shot for each hole and situation, while still allowing different approaches for different plays styles. Bad shots are punished, but not unfairly. The layout of the holes is top-notch, I can't wait to watch the pros tackle this course at the worlds in 2015.
Cons: It would be really nice if there was an indication on the tee sign of which placement the basket was at. In the summer its pretty difficult to see where the basket is on the longer holes, and can affect what shots you take before getting close enough to see the basket.
No trash cans, I'm guessing this more of a DCNR restriction. I think they could probably set one by the road near hole 4 so that people could use it between holes 10 and 11 also. It would be easier for Park Maintenance or waste management to collect if it was placed right beside the road. Also maybe they could put one near the exit, after 18 in the parking lot.
White tees don't have tee signs.
It would be nice to have more tee pad brooms, just for the tees that have heavy tree cover (2,7,13,14,18)
This one is ticky-tacky. A few of the paths between holes could be made more clear. Between holes 12 and 13 there should be one distinct path to walk down the hill, I think there should be one clear trail down to the next hole instead of a few "deer trails". Also between 16 and 17, there is a nice gradual trail beside the washout that leads to 17, the trail could use a little placard or something right beside it to let people know that's where the path is.
Other Thoughts: You should be able to identify poison ivy before playing this course. It's very common to find it amongst the weeds just off the fairway.
There are bathrooms at the far end of the parking lot near the beach. Useful after a round to wash off your legs and remove the oils from the poison ivy, or you know, go to the bathroom.
After playing this course 20+ times, I'm still coming up with different shots or lines to try to improve my score. I think that really is a testament to how well thought out this course is.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
One of the Best
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Great Layout - The course makes good use of elevation changes, features a number of right-to-left and left-to-right (and straight, too) holes, and generally routes you around pretty nicely. You face open shots, tunnel shots, technical shots, and more. You will use every shot in your bag, from flicks to sky hyzers to rollers and more. Truly, I could go on at length about the shot values here, but you'll have to play it to believe it anyway.
- True Par Fours - I'm one of those who believe that for disc golf to become "better" not every hole is a par three, and if you play at Moraine, you would agree. There are several true par fours on the course that require two good shots just to get within a range where you'd consider running a putt or laying up beneath the basket. There are plenty of true par threes, and few of the gimme birdie holes that plague courses with artificially high pars. The par is rated 66 from every set of tees, and there aren't many holes with which you can argue the stated par - particularly when the 559/692/852 foot 15th is (correctly) rated as a par four. Anyway, like I said, a bunch of true par fours. Disregard the PDGA app telling you they're all par threes. :)
- Good Signage - Except for the lack of signs on other tees (see a nit-picky Con below), the signs are nicely marked with trees, hole locations, measurements to the center of the "green" area (for all three baskets), and so on. They're small and unobtrusive, yet placed right where you'd expect to find them. They point to the next tee accurately as well.
- No Throwaway Holes - That's not to say there are no easy holes - the third hole can play relatively easy depending on the basket location, for example - but there are no throwaway holes at Moraine. Every hole - every single hole - presents a challenge that must be overcome. The use of OB on three, a few trees on 17, the sheer magnitude and views and downhill and wind on 15, the awesome downhill spike hyzer approach on 7, they're all good holes with good balance. There are holes with tighter fairways, but the green sits in a little clearing and on relatively flat ground. The tougher greens usually have the slightly easier fairways. You won't dread playing any hole here - not because of poor design, anyway! You may dread it because you don't have the shot for that hole, however!
- Great Baskets, Well Naintained Teepads - As you would expect at a top-tier course that will play host to Worlds in 2015, the tee pads are in great shape, as are the baskets. There are brooms on several teepads should you need them. They're not concrete - they're the flypad style - but they are in great shape and play well even when wet. The baskets have a bright strip of orange tape that makes spotting them relatively easy, and catch well without being overly generous.
- Limited Disc Loss Opportunities - Aside from 15, where you get a LOT of airtime and your disc can go over the hill, you shouldn't lose a disc at Moraine unless you're REALLY bad at either throwing (300' and 45° offline?) or you routinely play with camouflage discs and leave your contacts or glasses in your car.
- Parking Aplenty, Nearby Beach and Bike Rental - Just what it says. Lots of parking, because the parking lot for the disc golf course doubles as the parking lot for the beach area, so it's HUGE. The beach is right there, and there are several other places nearby to rent bikes, bike trails, kayak, etc.
- Grove City Outlets 20 minutes away - If your wife or girlfriend (or boyfriend/husband?) doesn't play, Grove City's outlet mall is a great way to kill two, four, or more hours, and it's close by.
Cons: I have to be really nit-picky here to come up with any cons. There are only three, and they're really not that important:
- Other tees could use signs. On most holes the tee signs are only located on the blue tees. While this encourages more players to play blues rather than golds, when you choose to play white you have to walk back each time, and then there's no indication (that I'm aware of) as to whether the pin is located in A, B, or C.
- No garbage cans/restrooms on course. It's a carry-in, carry-out park, which I can respect. Some garbage cans near 4 and 11 tees wouldn't be too difficult to empty, though, as they're right by the road. Restrooms can be found 300 yards from the 18th basket and first tee down by the beach.
- Really stretching now, but the parking log closes during the winter and you have to park outside and walk 1/20th of a mile down the road to start on holes 4, 5, or 11. Like I said, really stretching here! If there were more cons it wouldn't be a 4.75 course!
Other Thoughts: Even though I live in Erie, PA where we have ZERO in terms of disc golf, I feel blessed to have Moraine within 90 minutes of me. I can't say enough good things about the course.
Undoubtedly I gave short shrift to the actual design and play in the Pros section above. Frankly, I did so because I could talk about how great each hole is, but I figured nobody would want to read all of that! Suffice to say I really enjoy each and every hole out there, even if I don't have the best scores on some of them most of the time. The course is a blast to play, with true multi-shot holes, challenging and varied shot requirements, and good scenery.
It's the best disc golf course I've ever played, and I don't know that my opinion will change on that very soon, and even when/if it does, Moraine will be in the top five for a long, long, long time to come.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Believe the Hype
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: What a fantastic course. The thing that really sets it apart in my mind is how consistently memorable it manages to be throughout its 18 holes. Be it an interesting OB placement (hole 3, 18), a gorgeous view (the highly-regarded hole 15), an engaging angle or elevation (the rising corkscrew of hole 10), or a serious technical challenge (too many to reference), each of Moraine's holes seems to have something to offer. There's a lot of variety here, and a lot of attention to detail in terms of hole layout/pin placement/etc, enabling Moraine to maintain your interest and challenge your game over the course of a round or the course of a season. The course feels like such a complete offering, in which the progression between holes and the balance of various shots utilized are both well-considered. This is an even further achievement when you take into account Moraine's well-conceived flow and ease of navigation: hole 18 spits you out right next to hole 1, right back into the parking lot. I've never needed a map here; the tee signs, navigation markings, and clear-cut pathways make finding your way a snap.
The three sets of tees at Moraine provide a wide range of challenges, making the course playable for all skill levels, although beginners should expect some moments of frustration regardless of the tee they play.
One of pluses of this course is its natural beauty. It's situated in a well-cared-for, well-attended state park, providing a lot of beautiful sights. This is especially true in the fall. My wife doesn't play, but she's accompanied me on rounds here just to enjoy the walk and the sights. There's a lot for non disc golfers to enjoy at Moraine.
The course is isolated (while not being distant) from other park activities, meaning you won't have to worry about non disc golf traffic or interruptions. It begins conveniently close to parking, bathrooms, and water fountains. There's even a snack bar! (In the summer, at least.)
For as much elevation as this course has, walking it isn't overly draining. I assume this is because elevation changes are mostly gradual rather than drastic.
A lot has stuck in my head from my rounds at Moraine. Here are just two of my favorite aspects of the course:
- Holes 6-9 play through a series of clearings filled with well-trimmed saplings. They progress from a long, narrow fairway with saplings densely grouped in the middle (6) to an elevated shot under or over the trees (7) to a bottlenecking fairway that enters a picturesque clearing (8) to an open area where the trees form lanes to the basket (9). These holes seem purposefully connected in their scenery, obstacles, and topography almost to the point where they form a course within a course. It's a lovely progression of holes that within itself offers a lot of variety.
- Hole 12's dramatic reentry into thicker woods after the relative openness of holes 6-11 really strikes me. The course starts out in woods (1-2), then gradually opens up. The return to the woods two-thirds of the way through the round is very striking. My wife's reaction the first time we were out there together was, "whoa."
Cons: Not a lot of noteworthy cons here.
I think Moraine's baskets are situated a bit low in the ground. At times this has thrown me a bit for the first couple of holes in a round.
The tees would be perfect for me if they were three feet longer. I don't have a large run-up, but I like to have some buffer. This is more personal preference than anything else; they were more than useable.
There aren't usually signs for the white tees, which seemed strange to me since the gold and blue have them. It'd be nice to be able to get the distance from the white tees to the pin while out on the course.
There are some definite opportunities for losing discs, such as hole 15. Spotters come in handy at times.
Other Thoughts: I grew up less than 20 minutes from Moraine, oblivious to disc golf in general and the spoils of Western PA in particular. On a visit home during summer 2013, my brother suggested we try playing on a whim, at Moraine, and we loved it. My only complaint now is that I currently live over a thousand miles away. On trips home, I've caught myself fantasizing during a round about moving back here just so I could have this as my home course.
Moraine provides a phenomenal disc golfing experience that captures the best of what the area has to offer, in terrain, technicality, and quality. It's my personal favorite course in the area, edging Deer Lakes for reasons I find hard to articulate. It just seems like the total package to me. Rather than trying to explain further when words are failing me, I'll just urge you to play this course as soon as you can manage.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
True Disc Golf Wonder
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Beautiful pro-level 18 hole course set in the woods and other unused areas of a large state park.
- Gorgeous setting right from the start - distant view of the lake from the parking lot, practice basket nearby, nice framed entrance into the woods for hole #1, lush grass, etc.
- Kiosk right near first tee has a really good course map (also available online), flyers, scorecards, tourney results, etc.
- Restrooms available at far end of the parking lot; beach, grills and picnic tables nearby for non-golfers, along with (I'm sure) the countless other park activities
- I could hear the lawnmowers in other parts of the park, so I'm sure the grassy areas are well maintained
- 3 level, flypad tees on each hole - gold, blue and white - each giving different lines/looks on most holes (hole #6 is a good example - long tight alleys, but you pretty much are lined with with the right alley from blue and left alley from gold and white)
- 3 basket positions on each hole - sometimes significant variation (at least how it looks on the tee sign) to create variety when playing frequently
- Mach 3 baskets in great shape
- Tee signs at each gold and blue tee (not 100% sure, but I don't think white tees had them?) with an "ok" hole map/flight path, distance for that tee, par and next tee arrow
- Almost all (if not all) holes had a "next tee" sign/arrow/post right near the basket locations
- Sign directing you back to the parking lot after hole #9 (didn't take it, but looks like a short walk from the course map)
- Hole #18 brings you right back to the start/parking lot
- Not much "obvious" OB (pond, road, etc.), but there are a few select "natural" areas that create a challenge - a little stream/drainage runs through maybe 4 or 5 of the fairways and definitely in play on holes #2 and #18 closely in front of the pins; there is a little protected depression around the baskets on #3, which creates an added feature to an otherwise short hole; high grass designated as OB on the sides of #15 keeps you from bombing a drive with no concern for where it lands
- The feel of these holes was spectacular - I love "grove" type holes with a smattering of trees that provide obstacles and force shot lines, but don't put you in jail - it seemed like 99% of the course had this natural feel (not created by removing or adding trees) and it was wonderful - I'd love to sit for an hour and unload my bag off the hill on #7, a nice downhill hyzer over the tops of beautiful trees
- To keep it interesting, holes #2 and 13 are more heavily wooded the whole way; hole #15 is the big turnover, downhill bomb
- Not a high chance for lost discs as the course is not covered by layers of leaves or lined with thick brush
- A lot of shot variety on this course - uphill on #2, 4, 10, 16; downhill on #7, 15, 18; right on #4, 15, 17; left on #7, 10, 16; straight tunnel on #6, 13, 18
- This course has many holes that would stand out as the "best hole" on lesser courses - #6 is a long tight, flat tunnel drive followed by a long approach with trees more scattered, but fair enough to give you lines; #7 (mentoined above) is a downhill right to left 275 foot (from the blues) hole that lets you soar your disc over the tops of the trees to hopefully park next to beasket settled amongst them; #8 requires a precise drive right to left to a bottleneck followed by your approach that goes left to right and needs to avoid the grove trees; #9 is a flat grove hole that probably generally leads to a big sky anny out over the tree tops and hopefully cut through the woodline trees guarding the basket (wow - seriously - after typing this, what a freaking stretch of wonderful holes that is from 6 to 9); #15 is the big bomb left to right open field drive and then your approach (depending on drive length) and then a fun downhill approach to a relatively open green; #18 is a tight wooded hole with an even tighter section just in front of the basket with OB on either side of that path; even after typing all of those, I feel I could go on and on about so many more specific holes
Cons: - Hole map on the tee sign is not overly detailed - tough to tell where the pin should be sometimes if you couldn't actually see it (#11 comes to mind - compare the signs at blue and gold tees for instance - is that chunk of trees in front of A and B pin positions really there?)
- I'm sure it's nice having the significant variation of the 3 basket positions, but since they appear to be so varied, the distances on the tee sign (to center of green) seem like they can be pretty far off from the actual distance that day (#11 comes to mind again - blue tee to the A position felt like about 250 feet when I played, but the sign lists 303 feet - based on the sign, C position looks like it could be 350 feet or more)
- Would also be nice if the tee sign had an indication of which position the basket was currently in, as well as which tee you're at (the colored blocks in the ground were worn out somewhat) and where the other tees are relative to yours, in case you stumble upon the wrong one
- It had rained a few days before I was there, so it was pretty wet (not muddy) down near basket #15
Other Thoughts: - Benches on a handful of holes
- No trash that I saw anywhere, so the carry-in/carry-out rule works, but it would be nice to have a garbage can or 2, at least near the parking lot
- I generally like the bands on the Innova baskets due to visibility, but these baskets were very easy to pick out in the varying backgrounds
This course was simply amazing. If I could give it like a 4.9 rating, I would. It sucks having to "drop" it to a 4.5, but as the review tip mentions, save the 5-disc rating for the ultimately 100% perfect course. However, this was damn close. As I mentioned, the "grove" feel to the majority of the holes is what my disc golf dreams are made of. Thanks so much to the designers, people who maintain/improve the course and whatever state agency let you guys put this gem in. I can't wait to get back and play it again.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 11 Not
Great weekend trips
Pros: Open and long shots all in the same course.
long holes are really long but its a great course to play from all three tees in a morning!
Cons: Hills add distance to some of the "shorter" holes.
Other Thoughts: Go for it, never know when you will have a good lie.
0 of 11 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Tons of variety in the holes with some shorter and longer ones. The course winds its way through the woods which is enjoyable. Has rubber tee pads and great baskets. The course also has great signs about the holese and to direct you to the next hole. There is also a big board before hole 1 explaining the course. The course is very well maintained. The out of bounds areas are very clearly marked off with string.
Cons: The tee pads seem alittle short at times when doing your run up. Some of the holes it is easy to lose a disc because the "rough" is very thick.
Other Thoughts: If you are from around Pittsburgh it is an easy 50 minute drive that is worth it. This course will challenge all types of players.
3 of 8 people found this review helpful.
More Reign! Wave those terrible towels!
13 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: 18 championship calilber holes with mach III baskets and multiple pin positions. Three sets of rubber tees with tee signs and each are designed for specific levels of players. Excellent use of the rolling elevation and terrain. Great mix of shot type requirements as well as multiple fairways through some of the woods. Phenomenal risk vs reward on many holes. Nice mix of hole lengths, and pars. Navigation was decent. Benches.
Cons: Not much. No basket position indication. The drainage pipe that runs across the course. A few holes seemed to reward a player with a big gun throwing over the obstacles too much. From basket #10 you cross the fairway of hole #4 to get to hole #11.
Other Thoughts: Moraine was my favorite course on my trip to Pittsburgh. I was about as close as you can titer between a 4.5 and 5. I really don't think you can go wrong visiting any of the top courses in the Pittsburgh area like Deer Lakes, Knob Hill, Linbrook, and 2 Mile Run, and they all are up there on my list of favorites. IMO Moraine has more memorable holes especially hole 15 and all it's beauty. I also really liked holes 2, 7, 8, 12, and 18 which stand out among my trip. Moraine is a better tournament course to test overall skill with some phenomenal risk vs reward shots, also has better separation/seclusion between holes and an aesthetically pleasing surrounding.
13 of 17 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 1 Not
Beauty that can kill
Pros: Beautiful course that plays through a well wooded section of a large state park.
Challenge: truly championship caliber. Rewards good execution and punishes bad shots equally well.
Shot variety: OUTSTANDING. Significantly more wooded and tight than open, but when you do get the opportunity let rip, what an opportunity it is! Nice mix of fairway shapes, types, and distances. Sure it's cliche, but Moraine really is an "every shot in your bag... and then some" type of course. Some holes start out fairly open, and tighten up at some point on the fairway (like 16). Others have open fairways leading to well-guarded baskets (12), or start out tight to make you hit a window off the tee, but open up nicely further down the fairway (11).
Elevation: masterfully used to enhance challenge and aesthetics. Features several elevated tees and/or pins.
Multiple Tees: White, Blue, and Gold fly pads aren't just longer versions of the same shot. They present different windows to hit, and may require different shots. On a few holes, blue and gold are on opposite sides of the fairway.
Multiple Pin locations: adds variety and keeps things from feeling like "the same'ol course." Wish my local courses employed more optional pin placements.
Quiet and secluded: if you want to get away from it all, this is the course for you.
Natural Beauty: one of the more scenic courses I've played
Feels organic: Fairways seem relatively natural, as if they were already there. I could be wrong, but it doesn't seem like many trees were removed to put this course in... that's a nice plus in my book.
Equipment: well done. Baskets were in great shape. Fly pads were level and solid, footing was a non-issue. Tee signs show layout, pin locations, distance. Long fairways equipped with markers to let you know the distance remaining to the basket. Next tee signs to help move you in the right direction.
Memorable/Unique holes: many; 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 12, 15, 16
Navigation/flow: pretty intuitive for the most part - the only place I had trouble was after 10 (almost played 4 again, but had I checked the map, I'd have figured that out).
Amenities: Large park offers plenty of other activities.
Cons: Admittedly nitpicking here:
1st hole wasn't bad, but doesn't seem up to snuff on this course, and 13 seemed a bit "Poke and Pray"ish. A few benches and trash cans every 6 holes or so would be nice, but the truth is, there really isn't much to rag on.
Other Thoughts: Absolutely loved this course (even if that love wasn't returned).
Hole 15 is truly spectacular: Looks nice from the elevated Gold Tee, but if you don't stop at the landing area to appreciate the view, check for a pulse.
Absolutely loved the uphill upshot on 2 (I think pin was in position B), throwing through the tree tops on 7 (couldn't resist the urge to throw a few to see how close I could get), and the corkscrew on 8. Hole 6 will teach you all about placement over distance.
On certain holes, straying from Moraine's fairway's holes can be downright brutal (6 being a prime example). Not really suitable for beginners or those who don't have a fair amount of control - certain frustration.
Really enjoyed playing other courses in the area, and nothing off Deer Lakes or Knob Hill (both wonderful courses), but I have to say Moraine's definitely my favorite in the area. I hemmed and hawed about the rating, and would have given it a 4.75 if I could. Can't put my finger on it, but there's just something about the 5's I've played that I just didn't feel here
maybe it's just getting harder to move my needle that far. Nonetheless, this is a fantastic course, a must play for intermediate or better players visiting the area.
For good eats after your round: North Country Brewing.
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