8 Helpful / 2 Not
The Gem in the Woods
Pros: - This is a beautiful park with real character and the course is laid out quite well. There is a great variety of holes that will test most aspects of your game. If you have difficulty throwing 300'+ shots accurately you will struggle here.
- Despite most of the holes being 400'+, I was consistently pulling out my mid-ranges in order to make a more accurate, dependable shot, even on the par 5 holes. This is not your typical par 54 course! I believe the score cards list the par at around 72 but I would probably peg it closer to a 65 or so.
- The concrete pads were some of the best I've played on.
Cons: - Course is in desperate need of tree trimming. There are several locations where overgrown trees or low-hanging branches eat an excellent shot. A local informed us that a curmudgeon on the park board won't allow the club to cut any trees. Its unfortunate because the course getting a bit "wild" is one of the biggest things holding it back. Courses should be like well tended gardens, not forests.
- Dangerous creek crossings. There are five holes with some wide, deep creeks to cross. A few are crossed by playing hop-scotch across concrete pylons spaced across the gap. One has a metal plank that is about 1.5' wide and a rope to stead yourself. Another hole has a wooden plank about 2' wide and no rope. The last is hole 18 and fortunately the creek bed was dry because we couldn't find any way to cross the creek without walking back out to the road and around. These aren't huge concerns but I was a bit worried when my wife was trying to cross them, and I would definitely be worried about young kids trying. They add character to the outing, true, but they aren't safe and they aren't family friendly.
- Hole 18 was a disappointment. The course is a thrill ride of exciting holes (especially through the back 9) but it seemed like the designer was unsure how to finish back at the parking lot. After the majesty of the preceding holes you're treated to a dinky poke-and-hope putter shot back to your car.
Other Thoughts: Wow, Centralia was a lot of fun to play. Fun and challenging are the two words I would use to describe this experience, and I can't wait to come back.
My rating was a tough decision - I would honestly love to give this course a 4.5. I believe its peak potential is 4.5, but the problems I mentioned above are what hold it back. Here is my feedback - implement these and I'll gladly up to 4.5.
1. Build honest-to-goodness bridges for my family to walk across. Someone is going to get hurt.
2. Find a different hole 18. Something with pizzazz.
3. Convince that park board to let you tend the course - any horticulturalist will tell you that pruning limbs is actually good for trees, and removing certain trees are beneficial for the land.
8 of 10 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This is a big course with new concrete tpads, gateway titans, mulitple pin positions, and 3 sets of t boxes (only reds are concrete, as of right now). This course has everything, long drives, a few short aceable baskets, creek comes into play a few holes, hills, trees, beautiful landscape. This park is very well taken care of. Has better creek crossings, It also has a 9 hole rec course on the other side of the park.
Other Thoughts: Concrete on both the 18 hole champ and 9 hole rec side of the park, sometime in the future adding another 9 holes to that. Its a great course, and its only getting greater!
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 5 Not
Best course ever!!!
Pros: Awesome shot variety, awesome scenery, course and park is very well maintained, Gateway Titans, concrete teepads, distance, everything!!!
Cons: This course is getting nowhere near the recognition that it should. But it will shortly! This course will very, VERY quickly become known as one of the top courses on the planet.
Other Thoughts: Ok guys. All you have to do is read all the reviews. This course achieved a 4.5 rating WITHOUT concrete teepads! Our lack of concrete was the #1 complaint, but guess what. We have concrete now!!! This is my home course, so I may be a little biased, but there is no other course I've played that comes anywhere close to the quality of this course. Everybody involved with the disc golf club here, and the people who run the park make sure the park is always in excellent shape! This course is well worth any drive! This course is the epitome of a hidden gem, but mark my words, the world will know about this course soon, and the world will love it.
3 of 8 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Fun, Beautiful, And Challenging
Pros: -The course is set in a beautiful park that is almost always peaceful and quiet, Amazing for a relaxing fun round.
-The variety of holes is a huge plus, Long open "ball golf" like fairways where you can just rip it, to dense wooded shots that take great precision.
-Navigation is very easy with markers in the ground and even signs on some trees, also Scorecards w/ maps are always stocked. The course also plays very smoothly from hole to hole.(the course is long enough already, its great that the walking from hole to hole is minimized)
-Marked driving range parallel to hole #1 with markings from 150' to 550' which great for a day of field practice. Plus a practice basket for putting!
-All baskets are Titan-24's, by far my favorite baskets and all are in great condition.
-I love that there are grills for cooking out, bathrooms, and shelter right at the start of the course. Really great for when i take groups out to spend the day disc golfing and just to enjoy the park.
Cons: -Natural teepads are a downer and would lower my score, BUT money is being raised now and concrete is going in soon!
-Poison ivy is abundant, and i get it very easy. But again the local club actually takes there time to go around and kill any poison ivy that will interfere with play. so again this would lower my rating but simply knowing that the club is doing there best to control the problem makes me look past it.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Retraction of Negative Review
11 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: I returned for my second go at Foundation one year after I gave it a less than stellar review. My initial claim was that this course was great for big arms but too tough for players like myself who can't throw a country mile.
This year I approached the course with a different attitude. I knew what to expect, I knew it was long and challenging, but this time I would shape my strategy accordingly. I concentrated on placing my shots and trying to manage each hole wisely. In the process, I found myself enjoying the round more than any I have played in a long time. I learned to appreciate the length as an opportunity to test my skills far more than I'm able to do on a typical, par 54 course. I marveled at the beautiful design and the way the holes flow through the terrain.
I enjoyed the front nine last year. The journey through the woods and over the creek is as fun as disc golf gets, in my opinion. Holes 6-8 are my favorite holes on the course. I love the way that 7 and 8 both play over the creek, but not on the first shot (at least for me). Here's where good placement accuracy counts as your drive has to set up your second shot to go over the water.
The back 9 gave me fits last year. I found it much more manageable this time around by whittling the length down to little bite sized pieces. Even if you only throw 250 feet, you can still be near the 800 footer in three shots, providing you place them accurately. Simple math means par is possible on most of these holes, even for finesse players like me.
Cons: I'm retracting all the negative things I wrote here in my initial review. I realize that the real negative was my own attitude. Honestly, I find no faults in Foundation at all. No, it's not easy to make pars and birdies here, but that's what makes it so fun.
Other Thoughts: I can hardly believe this was the same course I whined about a year ago. When I finished that first round I vowed I would never be back. But reading the reviews of others caused me to re-think my opinion and I'm so glad I gave it another chance. Now it's one of my favorite courses ever and I can hardly wait to play it again. With the new concrete tee pads in place, I have to give Foundation a high 5!
11 of 19 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 10 Not
Nothing Better In The Area!
Pros: Gateway Titans
Variety of shot types
Pavilions with fireplace grills
Water during the warmer times of the year
Lots of trees not native to the area that were planted 100+ years ago
Cons: Limited designated parking although there's plenty along the side of the not so busy road
Not as busy as I prefer (although that can be a bad thing in sometimes)
Other Thoughts: Easily the best course within 100 miles of St. Louis.
0 of 10 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Dynamite Destination Course!
Pros: This course has it all! Professional long holes, some technical, some wide open. Short holes too, but none are without numerous obstacles. Extremely scenic, some of the best looking holes I've ever played. The park is primarily used for disc golf, and the land itself is amazing. The creek that snakes through the entire course makes you play honestly as well. Multiple pin and tee pad placements. Right now most of the pins are in the longer "B" locations. It even has shelters, restrooms and water fountains dotting the whole park. This course right here is why I play this game. Mother nature and competitive sports in one perfect harmony. Highlight of my disc golf year so far!
Cons: The only real con I have here are the natural tee pads. I have never played a course with natural pads, excluding the course I played that was laid out on an actual ball golf course with manicured teepads. These here were earthy dirt pads. I slipped badly on one today, but that's because it had rained and I was still getting used to running up on them to throw the long holes this course offers. I understand that many of the courses in this part of Illinois all have natural pads, so I'm guessing this is more of a political thing than a desire. However, I overlooked that minor annoyance to enjoy the top caliber of a course that this place is.
Other Thoughts: Destination course? You bet! I live two hours away, and you can bet I'll be back! I just wish this course was closer. Met an older gentleman who plays the course frequently and he was gracious enough to show me around and guide me as to where to throw and was very gracious and knowledgeable. If you are ever around this area and you DON'T take the time to stop and enjoy this place, you my friend will have missed out on one of the best disc golf courses I've ever played!
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 8 Not
worth the drive
Pros: This is an awesome course, defanatley worth the drive if your from out of the area like me. I love the creek that runs through the course. several shots are over the creek with little man made bridges across them (ex. ladder, big stones to hop across on) A nice mixture of holes some being open but most in the woods. Loved holes 6-8
Cons: the only con I can think of is that it would be nice if there were signs marking where to head for the next tee off position. This being due to the fact that some are around corners in the woods. Could be a little hard to navigate if you didnt have a local playing with you.
Other Thoughts: I will defantitaly be going back
1 of 9 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This long, tough championship course will really put your game to the test. There are many multi shot par 4's and a couple par 5's on this course. The course is very long but a lot of the holes have trees and low ceilings forcing you to throw controlled shots, not just pure distance. There's a lot of places to get in trouble when you get off the fairway or throw a less than controlled drive. There's a nice variety of shots and a few doglegs. It uses the available land, elevation changes and creeks very well.
There are two tees per hole with colored markers in the ground at each. A lot, if not all of the holes have multiple pin positions. Tee signs list the distance for each tee pad to each pin position with a diagram of the hole. There were many trash cans on the course to help keep the course clean. Maps were available at the bulletin board at the parking lot, but navigating the course was fairly easy.
With all the rain we've got recently, I was pleasantly surprised with how dry the course was.
Cons: With a course of this caliber, I was really surprised it didn't have concrete tee pads. With a course full of long holes, having nice long concrete tees would be a huge addition to the course. The tees weren't in bad shape considering they're dirt, but I did move around a bit on some of them to find a better place to throw from.
The tee signs were at the short pads meaning you have to walk past the long pad to see where you're going on a hole then walk back to the long pad to throw.
At one of the creek crossings there were nice cylindrical concrete stepping stones in the creek but two of them had fallen over. If I didn't have such long legs that crossing would have been tough. But then again with all the rain we've had recently the creeks could have more water than normal.
I've never critiqued tee signs with hole diagrams before, but due to all the par 4's and 5's where the basket is far out of sight, I feel like more detailed signs could be useful here. But then again, once you've played here a few times this is a non-issue.
With the exception of the concrete tees, the rest of my cons are pretty minor.
Other Thoughts: Overall this is an excellent, championship caliber course that's definitely worth checking out.
Even with the short pads I wouldn't say this course is rec friendly, but there is a 9 hole rec course in the same park so there's something for everyone here.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I have been waiting to play this course for 2 years now and I finally found the excuse to make the 3-hour drive to Centralia. I had pretty high expectations, and the course did not disappoint in any way. The conditions were rough because it was snowy and icy, but I will try to not let those affect my review.
Tees- For natural tees, they were nice and flat--it was hard to tell in spots because of the snow, but they seemed to be level for the most part. I didn't feel like the natural tee pads were that big of a disadvantage in most places.
Terrain: The property this course is on is awesome and quite unique. Foundation features the best creek I have ever seen used in a DG course. It is wide and deep and runs throughout much of the course. They find ways to use it differently with each hole. There is a nice amount of diversity as far as holes that play in the woods and some shots out in the open…but not too many. The woods vary from densely wooded to park like. There are quite a bit of elevation changes on top of everything else, which really takes this course to the next level.
Shot Selection: You will throw every shot you have on this course. Each hole is shaped differently and it really rewards the player who breaks the holes down into manageable parts (the par 4 and 5's). If you just want to grip it and rip it, this might not be the course for you (although there are a few places where you can).
Signage: Excellent. The signs appeared to be accurate and marked for the correct basket placements. There were maps for the red tees at Red #1 and maps for Blue at Blue #1.
Flow: Good for the most part. There were a few parts where I had to walk ahead to locate baskets and a few spots where I got turned around, but there were next tee signs in places where it was necessary.
Baskets: Excellent. I am personally biased towards the Gateway Titans. I think they are the best baskets on the market and Foundation is home to the Titan. The eat discs for breakfast.
Cons: There are very few cons for me. The main one is the creek crossing. Because the creek comes into play in so many places, it is very awkward in spots. Admittedly, the conditions didn't help, but looking at it subjectively it was still pretty rough regardless of the conditions. There were a few places with bridges, but other places where there were some big stones used for the crossing. The water was up and it could be very difficult to cross for those less coordinated. Unrelated to bridge issue, on hole 7 I went down to get my disc out of the creek and slipped and submerged both feet (ankles high) in icy water. Good times.
I guess the other con would have to be tee pads. I am not sure that the rubber strips that they have out there do much for me. They were very slick and I am not sure it is that much of an improvement over throwing off the dirt/mud.
Other Thoughts: Awesome, awesome course. Now that I have played it once, I can't wait to get out there again. The guys in the area have a real gem.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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