16 Helpful / 0 Not
Enjoyable course; watch out for the poison ivy
Pros: Bear Creek makes good use of the available land and has aged well over the years, growing from a little 9-hole course back in the late 90s to a full 18-holes with multiple pin placements and dual teepads on every hole.
In most cases the long teepads not only add distance but open up (or force) differently shaped lines to the pins, offering a variety of shots for the course. The course -- from both the longs and the shorts -- flows well with very little wasted space and very little extra walking between holes. This clean design allows the course to play much faster than most courses, as long as you can keep it on the fairways.
Fortunately, the fairways are a lot more obvious than they were a few years ago. The underbrush and poison ivy used to be legendary. Now, the course has worn in to the point where only truly errant shots get penalized by bad underbrush and unreasonable foliage.
The course makes good use of the underbrush and tees that are there, forcing a lot of different lines, ranging from big hyzers to low tunnel shots to delicate anhyzers to flicks, thumbers and skip shots around corners.
The course is almost completely flat -- all of the elevation is dropoffs into creeks/ponds -- so if you are playing well, everything is flat ground. This is good for speed-of-play, but is weak from a course-design standpoint. Having at least a couple elevation changes would have been nice variety.
Cons: My biggest pet peeves on a course are waiting to play and loosing discs, and unfortunately, Bear Creek is frequent home to both occurrences...
Bear Creek is one of the busiest courses in Texas, and lots and lots of high school kids play here recreationally (and sometimes are into other, less sanctioned activities on the side). Backups can be prevalent on the course, and often there are groups that lack the tact to allow more serious golfers to play through.
The course also has more than it's share of water hazards. With most pin placements, 9 or 10 of the holes have water hazards (9 from shorts, 10 from longs), and there are seldom good opportunities to retrieve your discs. The water is often murky or covered in foul-smelling scum, trash is abundant, broken glass, snakes, etc... are prevalent. It's just not a great place to go fishing for your discs (though I have done it before). So a bad bounce off a tree or a shot pulled early or sailing just a little too long, and you can be down in the creek with the water moccasins. This is a huge detractor for me.
I've also experienced (and heard of many other instances) where neighborhood kids have waited around the corners on blind shots and grabbed and run off with discs when the owners aren't in view. I don't think this is frequent, but it's happened to enough people -- and there are enough blind holes -- that it is worth keeping in mind as you play. On some of the shots, friends and I made a point of keeping spotters -- not to find our discs, but to make sure SOMEONE ELSE didn't find our discs before we did.
A last con worth mentioning is the poison ivy. The annual tournament called the "Poison Ivy Open" held at Bear Creek is aptly named. The poison ivy has been beaten back immensely over the years, but I still have friends who catch poison ivy every time they play Bear Creek. The poison ivy is there, and is prevalent any time you toss a disc off the fairway or skip past a basket. It's not going to kill you, but it is worth watching out for.
Other Thoughts: My parents lived near this course for years and it's where my brother and I would play hundreds of rounds a year during summer and winter breaks when I was home from college...
So I admit I have a hard time being objective about this course because it is where I learned to play. I have a lot of fond memories about it, and a lot of experience. But it also means that it's been so long since I first navigated this course that I have no idea how hard it is to find your way through the holes... I have no idea whether the teesigns are any good, since I haven't looked at them in years; in short, I know I can't answer some of the basic questions most people would have about a course.
I can give a word of warning that holes 13-18 can be hard to find your first time through. After hole 12, walk back through the parking lot and turn right into the woods just before you get to the interstate access road to the park. There you will find the teebox for hole 13. However, there are so many people who play this course that it is always easy to find a helpful local to show you through... my brother had the pleasure of playing tour guide for Ron Russell several years ago when he was passing through -- my brother said he'd never seen so many birdies look so effortless...
I have many fond memories of Bear Creek -- aces hit or watched, great rounds of Glow golf, snakes snapping, blue-balled disc retrieval in the icy stream in the dead of winter, innumerable great times with friends and family... and this colors my perception of the course. It is home to amazing memories, but I'm also aware of how many better courses I've played all across the country.
What makes Bear Creek special -- the reason I suspect it has approximately a 4.0 rating -- is that so many people come to treat Bear Creek as their disc golf home. There are many great local golfers who call this home and have spent thousands of hours working on their games and teaching/inspiring others to play disc golf. This is an amazing course for the memories and for the people. However, it isn't an amazing course for the holes or for the land -- there are much better courses to play, but few better places to learn from such a great community of golfers.
16 of 16 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Oasis in the City
Pros: Beautiful course in the middle of the city.
Parts of the course have you underneath huge shade trees walking across lush grass. Then the course sends you into the throws of a huge ravine, up and down embankments.
Some truly memorable holes here!
Good mix of long holes and
Well established pathways.
Cons: A little fuzzy walking from #12 to #13 - you will get lost unless you know where you are going.
Some hole markers are nonexistent
You will loose disc on a few of the more difficult holes (via the giant ravine).
Other Thoughts: Truly enjoyable course!
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has many beautiful fairways cutting through flat heavily wooded land with a huge deep creek winding throughout.
Some of the funnest holes have you thowing over huge gorges that were created when the creek eroded away the sandy soil.
I never got bored or tired of this course. It's like there is a hidden suprise around every corner.
The multiple concrete tees make this a course that anyone could enjoy.
Cons: I have never seen so much poison ivy on a course. It is everywhere, however, I played with my brother and 5 year old son and none of us were effected by the poison ivy.
The teepads are a little short and some of them have had the sand eroded away on the end leaving a big drop off. I fell after tripping off the end of one such pad.
This course is in serious need of some new signage. There are 2-3 teepads for every hole and it would be nice to know what they are all for. For consistency we played the tees that have the original wood post signs.
Anyone playing this course has the potential to lose discs either in the creek or in the rough.
Other Thoughts: I would drive out of my way to play this course again.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Gorgeous course!!! Lots of mature trees, dual tee pads, varied terrain, just awesome!!! A great combination of semi-open and tight shots are needed for this course. I really wish I had played it sooner.
Cons: Really there are but 2 cons I can give this course... The first would be there needs to be better directions to following holes, maybe a course map even. even though I played with a guy who had played the course a couple times we nearly went the wrong direction and once played the wrong hole... The other con is more aimed at other user's of the park and course. There are tons of garbage cans available throughout the course, people need to use them!
Other Thoughts: This course has definately move up to near the top on my favorites.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 3 Not
poison ******* ivy up the *** watch your self!
Pros: Nice design stressing fundamentals, with all sorts of shots. Low ceilings, high ceilings, tunnels, short putter shots through thick woods, shots over and next to a creek with steep sides and murky water. Well balanced shot mix overall (but begins with 3 rhbh shots in a row). Well mowed, clean.
Cons: POISON IVY- too much to avoid, you WILL get it on you playing here.
- Needs some new signs, tough to realize there are even dual tees on the first hole with one hidden from the other.
- Hole #13 is like impossible to find without help or just luck, you must cross back over #1 to the parking lot, then enter the woods through a small trail. No sign points this out, leaving it up to you to walk around for a long time searching for it.
Other Thoughts: There's just too much poison ivy for anyone highly allergic to have a good time, or to play the course (even play well) and not get covered in it head-to-toe. Be prepared for that, or skip it as I recommend, if allergic.
You will encounter it on the follow through on the tee, on the paths between holes (sometimes have to find alt. route to the next hole to avoid touching it), surrounding baskets and lining the fairways 5 feet high.
11 of 14 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
One of the best courses around!
Pros: One of the greatest things about the course is the option for short tees or long tees. Also, the baskets are moved occasionally, giving quite a variety of hole types. Bring your hiking shoes, because there is some good terrain to cross. You shoot over a creek on holes 1, 2 and 12 and over a pond on hole 8 (from the long tee). The water hazards will keep you on your toes. There are lots of holes for possible aces and birdies and a couple that you're doing well to pull out a par on. This course seems to draw a lot of beginners as well as some very good, experienced players; it has something for everyone.
Cons: Watch out for poison ivy and other miscellaneous poisonous plant. I've not really gotten it bad myself, but have heard of folks that have out there. The course is easy to follow in most places. People get mixed up after holes 3 and 12. After 3, follow the sidewalk around to hole 4, don't go to the teebox that you see first, that is actually hole 11. After 12, you have to walk back to the parking lot and enter the trees near the access road to find 13. Lots of people will start their round on 13 instead of 1 because the course flows better that way. There are usually quite a few people out playing so be prepared to be patient while you wait.
Other Thoughts: If you are consistently playing under par on the shorts, give the long tees a shot...they are a lot of fun and more challenging. This course is definitely one of my favorites in the area.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is a very fun and challenging course.Good mix of a few open holeswith lots of holes in and around trees. Hole #12 is a very unique hole that tees off on one side of Bear Creek and the basket is on the other side.
Cons: there are 7 holes where it is possible to wind up in a water hazard, some that you will not get your disk back from. To get from #12 to #13 you have to go back through the parkinglot and through the trees to the left of the first tee.#13 tee is very close to 360.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Assuming that you are playing from the advanced tee's.... this course is very fun and challenging and offers unique holes that you cannot find anywhere else in the N. Texas area. I think that the Grapevine parks department does a very suitable job of upkeep on the course and it is pretty easy to navigate.
Cons: From the shorter tee's this course is way too easy.... If you arent familiar with this park you could easilly get lost trying to find 13 unless someone tells you where to go. I would suggest to the people who run the course out there to come up with better signs at the beginning of the course.
Other Thoughts: Fun to play and another sweet park in the N. Texas stable.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
18 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Let me start by saying that some of these holes have gorges/large creeks to clear off the tees. They are amazing. Most of them do have a path down in them to recover your discs, but plan to climb to get them. Multiple tees can make this as tough as you want. This is a beautiful park and most people are not near the disc golf course portion. There are some really great holes, making you bring out most of your shot arsenal. Direction and distance will both be needed on many tee shots. #18 is fun possible blind ace hole to finish up the round. Bathrooms are on the other side of the ball field and there are many trash cans along the way.
Cons: You may need help finding your way around without a map or a guide. Getting from hole to basket may take some climbing. Some holes have some water that is dark/deep enough that you may not recover a disc on (#14 & 15 for sure). I do advise walking ahead on the questionably safe holes on your first time out as sometimes the trouble spots are close by the baskets. Getting from #12 to #13 is not marked as it makes you walk clear past where you started (which means back to the parking lot & into the woods across the entrance drive between left field and 3rd base of the ball field). You may need to ask for help.
Other Thoughts: This course is fantastic when it comes to a great variety of hole designs. I have a great time and really enjoyed how amazing some of the tougher holes play out. Most of the course is under tree cover, so the sun is not to much of a burden. Great course, well maintained, and there is lots of trash cans along the way. Basically, almost every hole from the shorts is a certain par 3 except for maybe hole #11 in the long left pin position. So, it's not a long course and it does have some ace potential.
18 of 20 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 12 Not
nice course to try different shots on
Pros: this course will have you trying all kinds of shots. there are some very challenging holes. you will need extra discs on this course.
Cons: hole 12 can be a bit annoying seeing that you have to be a billy goat to get to the hole after you throw your shot.
3 of 15 people found this review helpful.
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