It starts out so beautifully...
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The thing with living in this area is that the "nearby courses" according to this site are as the crow flies. So some courses are close, but a ferry ride away. HJ Carroll has always been one of those that's far away from everything, but I finally made it out to play it.
Equipment: All of the tees are concrete and all of the baskets are high quality.
Navigation: There's a map on the kiosk to your right when you pull in. Take a picture of it. You won't need it for the most part, but it did come in handy. Then walk down the path to the right of the kiosk until you reach the RV. There's a short trail into the woods to your right. Go in there, and you'll find hole 1. From there the navigation is fairly straightforward, with signs to guide you most of the way. The walkout to 3 was only slightly confusing, but easy enough with the signage and map. Pay attention to the signs on each hole too. OB's and mandos are detailed, and some of the baskets in the open are close together. You don't want to throw to the wrong one like I did. And the blind pin for hole 6 has a giant flag on top of it so you can see where you're going.
Design: The wooded holes had me planning reasons to come out to Chimacum more often. They're short, but very technical and downright beautiful. And none of them are gimmes. The open hole design? Don't ask. This is the "pros". But you do have a variety here. Wooded and open. Shot choices galore, with hyzer and anhyzer lines. The little bit of elevation on the property comes into play with slight uphills and slight downhills. There's plenty of OB to keep the open holes at least semi interesting. It's mostly short, but luckily there's one hole (6) that does let you air it out.
Upkeep: This course is in great shape. Nice baskets, nice signs, minimal undergrowth... There's nothing to complain about here. And there's a soccer field nearby for field work! It feels like the locals take pride in this course, and they take care of it too.
Cons: Equipment: The 1 basket seemed to be missing a chain. I know this because I missed a 5' dead center birdie putt when the disc hit the pole and nothing else, thus bouncing back at me. After glaring at it for 5 minutes, I continued on.
Navigation: The sign on the other side of the street that guides you to hole 3 isn't at the path to hole 3. It's only an additional 10' or so, but come on. Everything else is so well done in that regard. Plus basket tape could be helpful if you didn't take a picture of the map (take a picture of the map).
Design: The first four technical holes are a thing of beauty. They might be my favorite 9-hole holes of all time. No undergrowth, technical lines, wonderful colors... I really want to play them again. But the final five are a different story entirely. They all share the same area. The 5 basket is near the 9 basket. Any shot throwing toward 6 can cross any of the other fairways. You could quite easily throw to 6, 7, or 8 from the 6 tee and have it be an okay hole. You can throw long on 8 to the 9 basket. You can throw from 5 to the 9 basket (which I did, not realizing that the 5 basket was tucked to the left). It really feels like the designer started out the course with a wonderful area, ran out of space, and then just threw a bunch of baskets in a field to round out the nine. And then once you've finished, you have a long walk back to the car, or an even longer walk to Hole 1. It just kind of feels like they ran out of quality space too quickly, so they had to just cram 5-9 into an open area without much challenge other than the wind.
Other Thoughts: I've already made my thoughts clear on the "two courses" here. It's a beautiful park. It has soccer fields, walking paths, and a BMX track. There's a lot more that I didn't even see. There was also a giant metal fish for some reason. So it's definitely worth bringing the wife and kids to if you're in the area. But it's far enough from everything else that it doesn't fit as a "stretch your legs while passing through" course, and it's just not good enough to be a destination course. That said, it is a challenging course with the technicality of 1-4 and the high winds (when I was there) of 5-9. I've never come that close to missing a drop in putt due to wind before. So it will help you to improve certain aspects of your game if you're there. I just can't justify being there just for the disc golf.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Very enjoyable outing
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Fun and quick playing course. Good place for beginners. First 3 holes in the trees are pretty technical. Just a nice fun outing. Hole #9 lets you uncork your power. That's kind of fun.
UPDATE: Wow! If you haven't been here in awhile you would not believe it. All the holes have great concrete 4'x8' boxes. All holes have great signs. Almost every hole has trash cans. First hole is being landscaped to look very professional. Whoever is grooming this course deserves a shout out...Great Job!
Cons: If the park is busy with other activities...soccer, alot of people walking their dogs or running the outer trail...you have to be careful not to hit someone. The tee pads are very poor...concrete ones are crumbling apart. Plays on 3 holes are tooooo close to the soccer field. UPDATE: Holes 6-9 have been redesigned however the course is still tight and some crossover can occur if the course is busy. During the middle of the day the course is pretty empty so that is less of a problem. No problem with soccer fields anymore.
Other Thoughts: So...all that said...play during the week in the morning and you should be okay. Plenty of parking and bathrooms. Wife and kids can picnic and play at the playground while you toss a few discs! Totally awesome. UPDATE: My thoughts are this course is getting better and better. Cleaner, safer, and worth an outing for a different look and feel on a course. Holes 1-4 are in a stand of small trees and the fairway is very narrow...an accurate control throw makes the birdie. Holes 5-9 are out in a field type area where you can unload the power...and if there's no wind a long and awesome throw can be made. My grandkids love playing here. At 7 and 10 they can experience a lot of different throws. Lastly, go give it another throw.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: A good beginner course, and the closest one to Pt. Townsend. First three holes are a nice challenge in the trees, with all three holes guarded by trees. The last six are much more open. That's kind of nice for learning what your discs do, but adds no challenge.
Plenty of parking and facilities on site; park is usually clean and maintained.
Cons: You realistically could throw a straight midrange for every shot with no consequences.
Be careful of other park users! With the walking trail, soccer fields, and BMX track all near the course, you may have to wait occasionally.
Other Thoughts: This isn't the best of courses, but it doesn't claim to be. It's just a solid little nine-holer. I'd love to see more courses in the Olympics, with their terrain and trees.
Holes 1 and 2 are pretty decent golf shots, as 1 is tucked into the right edge of the woods with a legit fairway. There's a good straight or hyzer shot to 2 from both pads. 3 has a bit of a plinko element, but is gettable. 4 and 5 are decent shots, since you have to account for the elevation change and get around the trees on 4. 6, 7, and 8 are pretty bland. 9 is a decent finishing hole, but it doesn't really lead back to anything.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Basic Family Course
Pros: HJ Carroll bills itself as designed for families/beginners and indeed it is. The three holes in the trees really help diversify what is otherwise a wide open layout. If you are a local then this course is a 'Pro' because otherwise you would be driving a long way to play disc golf.
Cons: The 6 open space holes are very boring; short and almost no obstacles. The open area is not particularly pretty. Has kind of a weedy look and feel to it. If you are a more advanced player the open area will not be a challenge. Gravel tee pads are not in the best of shape. The current online map (8-24-2008) is no longer accurate.
Other Thoughts: This course is basically 3 wooded, technical holes and 6 wide open holes. The course description says it is a family course and beginners are who would benefit most from this course. The open areas are good for people who are just starting. The holes are short and almost totally without obstacles. Three holes are 210', 215' and 230'. These should be deuces for an advanced player.
The 3 new holes in the woods really save this place. They are tight and technical (not to mention nice woods if you like that sort of thing). They are short so if you really know the line you could try for the basket from the tee.
This course is what it is, a family course. I really wouldn't drive out of the way to play HJ Carroll. However, if you are in the area why not check it out.
Bonus: This course is as Pacific NW as it gets if you are just going by a map. The Olympic Peninsula is the furthest north and west landmass in the continental US.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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