5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 18 hole course in the back of a nice park in Southington/Plantsville. Course offers two tees on a number of holes (a red short tee, usually natural), and the main tee pads (flypads, in good shape). Short tees will offer a number of birdie opps with clean drives, while the longs will challenge you with some par fours and long, testy threes. Completely wooded with clean lines to hit for every hole. Baskets in good shape and catch well. Most of the earlier holes had tee signs, handmade, and depicted the hole quite well. Next tee signs found on trees near the previous basket. Navigation is average. OB patch on 6 added challenge (still buried my death putt). I like 17's pin placement behind the boulder.
Cons: The last five holes were really muddy (granted, we had several inches of rain prior to the day I played) and also had no signs. The early holes play really close to the highway, so if you need complete silence prior to your putt, sorry, you're not getting it. Only a real bad shot or nasty tree kick will threaten your disc nailing a car at 75 mph (come on, no one in New England does 65), just something to think about when selecting which lane to hit and what you throw. Parking lot can be treacherous, there were one or two deep potholes in that lot.
Other Thoughts: Panthorn has a reputation for being tough from the longs, and, although I played the shorts (when I could find them), the longs would be tough, and that is why the locals call their course a thorn in the side. Worth a quick stop in the immediate area if it has been dry, if not, you can play the first 12 or 13, it's drier in that area of the park.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Fun, Challenging Course
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: -Tee pads for most, if not every, hole
-Good amount of parking right near hole 1
-There is an easy path from the hole 9 basket to the entrance, meaning a person could play nine holes if short on time.
-Right off I-84 (can be good and bad)
-Rarely busy, except for Wednesday nights (league)
-The holes are all fairly close to each other
-LOTS to do at the park (playground, ball fields, basketball/tennis courts, fishing, biking, etc.)
Cons: -Most of the front nine are right near I-84, which ruins the peaceful atmosphere that is the woods.
-On weekend afternoons during fall/spring, I can imagine the upper lot would get busy, limiting parking for disc golf
-On days that it has rained (mainly in the spring), the course is incredibly muddy. Definitely keep an eye on the weather before going.
-If you are a beginner like me, some of the holes are REALLY long (hole 9 is 500 feet) This is good for experienced players, though
-Signage could be better, as a few holes have no marking (sign describing hole length/location) Signs pointing toward the next tee could also be improved
-Little to no elevation, which again, can be good and bad.
Other Thoughts: This is a course you have to play to decide if you like it or not. It has features that some people like and some don't. If you like a peaceful game, this course isn't for you. However, if you don't care about noise, give this course a try. Same with elevation. Other than that, it's a maintained course that isn't one to avoid, but also isn't one I'd travel across the country just to play. For me, it's a great local course, as I live 10 minutes away. It's definitely a challenging course, so make sure you bring your driver. Pretty much, if you live in the central Connecticut area, it's worth a try.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice wooded course
Pros: Nice, hand-painted signs on all holes (except 1, which was missing), with distances noted for Pro and Rec tees. Well marked Rec tees on all of the longer holes make a good option for novice players. Course is very challenging from the Pro tees, but fairways are well-defined and generous enough in most cases. Although in heavy woods, the rough to either side of the fairways is relatively sparse and easy enough to play out of when your disc is misbehaving and avoiding fairways.
Cons: Although dry this time (due to major drought conditions), the course is built on swampy ground and is very muddy a lot of the time. However, there are many wooden paths built between holes and up the middle of many fairways to keep you from continuously walking in the mud.
Next Tee signs are everywhere on many holes, but non-existent on many others. When the course was expanded from 9 holes to 18, there were 4 holes added between the original holes 4 and 5 (with the other 5 holes being added on to the end of the course). Finishing hole 4 is confusing, as there are now 2 clearly defined paths leading away from the hole and no signs indicating which way to go (to the right, btw). Also, baskets for holes 9 through 13 still are marked 5 through 9, respectively, which might be a little confusing.
The course itself is difficult to find if you haven't been there before. Drive to the back of the park until you are dumped into a parking area which seems like the end of the road. But at the back left corner of this lot is another road shooting up and around the corner into another lot that again, seems like the end of the road. But in the back left corner of this lot is a gravel road that leads into a large gravel parking area, where the course begins (where else) at the back left corner.
Other Thoughts: Overall, a nice course, just try to hit it during dry periods!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Could be a Good Course
Pros: Right off I-84, Panthorn Park is very easy to find. The main park is massive and well manicured.
Once you make it to the DG course, the course signs are great. The signs are hand-painted (which shows some dedication) and show tee locations, OB, expected lines (and the locals route), and distance. Further, "Next Tee" signs and arrows are all over the place making it difficult to get lost going from the last basket to the next tee.
The heavily-wooded layout of the course forces a technical approach over a power approach. Most holes have two different tees with shorter, easier lines for rec players. The mix of left-to-right, right-to-left, and tunnel holes in combination with the variety of hole lengths keeps you on your toes and requires a refined skill set.
One signature hole is a < 200' potential ace run with a 12-foot round OB water feature (called the "Hot Tub") within 3 feet of the basket. The layout of the fairway and OB on this hole really pushes the risk vs. reward aspect of the game.
The vast majority of the baskets and tee pads were in great shape.
Cons: Park signage pointing to the DG course would helpful for anyone that hasn't played Panthorn.
Panthorn is easy to get to because it's right off of I-84, but the disc golf course is right next to the highway. The highway can be heard the entire time you're on the course. The danger to motorists is of concern as there are a few holes where it's entirely possible for an errant throw to drop a disc on the thruway.
Although the hole lengths and layouts change, there are nearly zero elevation changes. Panthorn Park itself has numerous hills, but these were not incorporated into the course design (might not have been able to use this land for DG though).
Having an almost entirely wooded course is great for fine-tuning controlled throws, but the lack of any real wide-open spaces to uncork a disc is a detracting factor to the course overall.
There were numerous fairways where the adjacent rough/brush could be trimmed back.
By far though, the biggest drawback to the course is the ground underfoot. The course appears to be built on a bog. Most holes were swamp-like, sloppy, and extremely/excessively muddy. Just when we really started to really have fun on the course, the muck could come into play and act as a big buzz kill. Luckily, it was cold enough that the insects hadn't come out, but I'm almost positive that mosquitoes are a major problem during the warmer months. To give the local DG community credit, over some of the most seriously messed up trails/fairways, there were objects that you could step on to cross the bog. Unfortunately those were few and far between and a large portion of these planks, logs, and pieces of fence were half buried in the mud.
On several of the holes throughout the course there was a fair amount of litter that took away from the natural wooded beauty of the course.
Other Thoughts: I really, really want to like this course. If the some of the underbrush could be cut back, it would be a big help. If something, anything, could be done to help mitigate the muddy mess throughout the rest of the course, I would be happy to rate this course a 4.
The next time I'm in the area, I'd like to play Panthorn Park again, however, it's going to have to be pretty dry month before of my round.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Very cool wooded course. Interesting holes that require different kinds of shots. Enough trees to make it interesting but not so many that it's ridiculous. Good mix of longer and shorter holes. A few memorable holes. Some minor elevation changes on the back 9.
Cons: Very poorly marked. The course needs new signs as it seems that it was recently expanded from 9 to 18 holes. There are some signs pointing the direction of the next tee but not always. A couple possible places to get lost so bring a map. Recently rained the day I played and was very muddy. Many fairways were not easily passable. Rubber mats in some of the tee boxes are very poorly laid. Course needs some work.
Other Thoughts: This is a really cool course but it needs a bit of work. I would rate it at least a half star better if the signage and tee boxes were improved.
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4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
A Course with Great Bones
Pros: Course is set deep in the woods and challanges your game with lots of trees but fair openings. Many of the holes are long so makes sure you stay on the fairway on your drive so your second shot isn't in the thick brush. I lot of fun and tricky holes.
Cons: Course is hard to navigate, I was lucky to have a local find me in the woods wondering around and offered to play the rest of the round with me. I course is this way because they just converted it from 9 to 18. Very Muddy, make sure to wear your boots
Other Thoughts: You can tell the local club has done a lot of work on this course over the winter. Once a little more work is done and fly pads are put in on the new holes this course will be awesome. I am looking forward to getting back and playing it again in 6 months.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Great little course in the woods. Lots of trees to make things interesting but there was always an obvious route to throw through. Good variation of hole lengths and shot selections. Does not seem to favor left of right handed players. Good signs made it pretty easy to find the next hole and the course seemed to flow well. There were a couple sets of tees on the longer holes.Tee-pads were rubber mats and generally well kept.
There appeared to be more than 9 baskets but I didn't see any more signs upon quick examination and didn't have time to really look into it. Easily accessed of off interstate 84.
Cons: Some of the tees seemed to be rubber mats that were simply thrown on the ground, and although the provided some traction they were very bumpy. Water can seem to be a problem on this course, although there are no water hazards it had rained about two days before I played and the course was still extremely wet, to the point where one tee pad was nearly submerged and there were many puddles on the fairways. I played in the winter but I can imagine in the summer the foliage could be extremely thick and the presence of ticks and poison ivy is not unlikely, this also presents the opportunity for lost discs.
Other Thoughts: The course appears to be in the process of expanding from 9 to 18 holes, as I saw at least 3 extra baskets while playing, but I couldn't find any signs or tee pads for these holes.
This was a fun course that provided plenty of challenges, yet not to the point of being frustrating. In you're in the area I would recommend it.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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