A Visitor’s Perspective on DGCR’s Most Infamous Rec Course
25 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Pendleton King Park is one of the more impressive city parks I've ever been to. Technically, the entire 64-acre tract is a bird sanctuary, which makes it even more noteworthy that a dog park, play equipment, and a disc golf course can coexist with the magnificent landscaping and twittering birds scattered throughout the grounds. I don't think I've ever played a park layout in more pleasant surroundings.
Luckily for us, the golf isn't bad either. The holes are divided between the open, amenity-filled area of the park and a wooded, nature trail area beyond. Most are pretty straightforward ~275 footers that play straight or basic doglegs in both directions. A handful of holes offer multiple baskets with more challenging B pins to break up some of the monotony, and largely do so with success. Less skilled players should find enjoyment in weighing whether or not to attack holes with a fairway driver for a shot at 2 or shaping a mid for a tap-in 3. This very basic risk/reward may seem simplistic for intermediate and above, but it's really enjoyable for a rec player like me who's just excited to flirt with par.
All the little course amenities are here: concrete pads, abundant trash cans, benches at every tee, mid-round restrooms, bag hangers, visible next tee signs when needed. The baskets are older, but still catch well and show no signs of vandalism. Flags (when necessary) and bright orange hole numbers aid in visibility.
Many of the fairways and greens are sand, which may seem like a given for a local, but is a delight for a Midwesterner used to slogging through sticky mud in the winter and spring. I imagine this keeps the course drained and dry more often than not.
I can't speak to the "friendliness" of the course, but it's certainly clean.
Cons: As a popular park course, PKP also seems to experience all of the classic park course drawbacks. Mob golf runs rampant, as my twosome had to wait behind clusters of 8 and 13(!) at one point.
Nearly all of the open holes play near to other park amenities, but only Hole 2 offers any real concern to the considerate player, as the fairway abuts a large play area and the green backs up to a park entrance driveway. Hole 3 plays over this same driveway, but close enough that it would be next to impossible to be surprised by and strike a passing vehicle. The rest of the open holes provide a clear enough view of the surrounding area that park patron safety shouldn't be an issue.
Because the vast majority of the wooded holes are so straightforward, they tend to blend together in an amnesiac smoothie of mediocrity. Holes 10-15 are a blur, and I couldn't recall any of them from memory.
Other Thoughts: PKP is probably a 3 for most on this site, but a fun factor aimed directly at my skill level combined with top-tier course and park amenities force this reviewer to give it the extra boost. In a nutshell, this is the kind of park I'd be thrilled to call my home course, a feeling I clearly share with Fast Eddie and the rest of the PKP crew. It's no 5-disc wonderland, but it's definitely worth an hour of your time.
We played Pendleton King twice as a cooldown course after tackling the IDGC over two days, and it works admirably in that capacity. Bring your confidence level back up after getting beat down across town!
25 of 28 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 29 Not
Pros: Custom made benches and holders at every hole.
signs point to "next tee" thru out course.
Friendly staff and park volunteers.
new position of the 6th hole adds a good twist to the course and it's difficulty
Cons: course crosses path with many picnic areas and play ground.
course is ever changing
1 of 30 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 22 Not
Pros: PK is a very fair course in that you make a decent shot and you can par the hole but more importantly, if you risk a more difficult one you can be rewarded with birdie.
The course is clean and at any given time you will often see someone working on improving conditions.
The course is undergoing planned phases of improvement and it will only get better.
This is a course you can feel safe and welcome on. My experience also tells me you will meet people of all ages and can usually find a game.
Cons: The only downsides to this course are the shots I can't make.
Other Thoughts: I have played a number of courses around and like PK the best even though it is not the closest. I realize that par for me will always be a great score on this course but the total experience and the friendly people will bring me back.
4 of 26 people found this review helpful.
42 Helpful / 2 Not
Bring your turnover/ under stable discs!
Pros: It appears that there is a lot of pride taken in maintaining this course and the park itself.
There are trash cans all over the place, and you won't find trash on the ground.
There are new benches at each tee pad, with custom inserts that advertise sponsors.
Teepads are concrete and free from debris.
Length of course and layout provide the possibility of a very quick round- about an hour and ten minutes with no rushing.
Layout also never puts you too far from the parking lot (in case you left something in the car or need to leave mid round).
Old school course that is deceptively challenging, despite 14 holes under 300 feet.
Cons: Only a few holes allow you to open up off the tee. You will not be cranking 400' foot drives with your Force or Destroyer on this course.
Hole 2 has a fairway that runs parallel to a set of playgrounds on the left. As this is one of the few holes where you can/need to get some D off the tee, it presents a tough shot and a heaping helping of tension. Think of a tough water clearing shot, except if you mis-throw here you aren't just OB without a disc, you might injure a child. I have read somewhere that a net might be installed, although that is going to be a pretty long net.
I count 8 holes where you drive uphill. This is obviously a way to compensate for the lack of real distance, and I applaud the effort. The problem is that quite often you are throwing uphill while also needing to turn your shot right. In this regard it presents a similar shot a few too many times, hence the Con.
In many cases the tee pads slant upwards, as well.
There are now no holes on this course that I would consider "epic" or unforgettable (see Hole 4 description below).
Other Thoughts: In reference to my title, I figure there are around thirteen drives that will require you to shape a shot from left to right, to varying degrees. My initial thoughts on this course were that several of these holes were unfair in what they asked you to do to potentially achieve a birdie. I have sense softened that outlook, but only a little.
Hole 1: pretty average forehand shot, or take your chances through the trees straight at the basket
2: One of the few big drives, but alongside the playground. This hole requires a super straight 450 foot shot, or a shot that gently S-curves or fades right after about 300 feet. We all have that shot, right?
3: Standard hyzer shot with bad situations if you are straight or early.
4: This USED to be the signature/memorable hole. The tee pad is still there on the corner of the tennis courts, but there is a sign leading you to the "official" tee pad. The old shot made you resort to all sorts of disc trickery: rollers, super hyzers, forehand flexers, monster thumbers, etc. Now it is a 280 foot straight shot with no soul.
5: Tricky, tricky. Requires an uphill throw, again left to right. May be a lane straight up the gut, but that would be tight.
6: Thus begins the holes I think might be close to unfair. This one isn't as bad as the others, but you'll see what I mean. Requires a drive that arcs about 80 feet straight-ish, then fades the remaining 180 feet to the basket. Left to right, natch.
7: Uphill 261 feet. Deceptive length, pretty straight.
8: Uphill slope makes this 270 play like 350. Low tree branches lessen the optimal line.
9: Downhill 290 that requires shot to fade from left to right subtly.
10: Another drive that might seem difficult to achieve. Needs a shot to travel 75 feet straight, then arc left to right and glide 150 feet to the basket.
11: More flex shots needed. 292 feet. Can go semi straight at it, but will need something without a lot of fade or skip.
12: Just read Hole 10's description and add 40 feet to the "after the corner turn" distance.
13: Best example of my "who has this shot?" critique.
This left to right arc is quite shallow and wants you to travel around 100 feet to the corner, then turn 90 degrees right and travel another 138 feet.
14: 287 foot straight shot, but basket is tucked into the right side of the end of the fairway, requiring a shot that finishes straight or right.
15: Hyzer shot, 219 feet.
16: 329 feet, requires a shot that goes around 300 feet and stays low enough to pass under a guardian tree right before the basket.
17: One last shot that asks you to throw either laser straight with zero fade, or an under stable disc that works left to right. OB road on the left, with tree line on the right that creates a V with the basket in the rear point.
18: 305 downhill. The trees and planters and such may mess with your distance judgement. If you throw straight at the basket the fast green will carry your disc away.
I should say that all my hole descriptions are for a 900+ rated golfer attempting to attack a course that seems attackable. For instance, Hole 17 could easily be a 250 foot straight shot, 90 foot approach, and 10 foot putt for a 3. Every hole on the course is a relatively simple 3, but it is going to make you work and execute your shots to achieve 2's.
42 of 44 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 33 Not
Pros: They have done a lot of work on this course. Put up markers to navigate you throughout the course, trash cans and bench on all holes. For the most part course is flat and easy to walk. It's a great place to learn the game
Cons: Do not have a driving range
Do not have papers like you would get at golf course that tells you how long and gives you place keep score
Other Thoughts: All around a great course
Paint the chains so they stick out a little more
At some other parks they have layout of each hole at tee
1 of 34 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 0 Not
Bland but not as bad as the rating would lead you to believe
Pros: Pendleton King has the reputation as the worst course in Augusta but it's not actually too bad. There is a good mix of fairways curving left and right with the woods on the side of the fairways so if you go off course the rough can eat you up which I have categorized as a good thing because I like rough that challenges you since that is its job. Not a whole lot of elevation changes, just a couple on the course the throw slightly uphill or downhill; just enough to mess with your ability to judge distance because of the change. Most of the course plays on solid dirt so you have to judge your skips well and avoid rolling your upshots. No signs and we didn't follow the map but the course is fairly obvious and I'm surprised at previous reviewers complaining of navigational issues. Baskets are aging but still in decent shape as are the tee pads.
Cons: I liked this course but nothing stood out as something amazing or unique or interesting; I've seen everything here before. The course is a bit bland and runs together in my mind with the exception of a couple of holes in the front nine. The back nine looks almost exactly the same with the exception of the last two holes. There is a part where you play back and forth throwing almost the exact same throws as before so it's a bit boring. I wish there was a better mix of hole distances here as everything feels about the same distance whether it moves 50 feet or not.
Other Thoughts: This course isn't bad but there just isn't anything amazing here to go back to, that saying it's still a decent option as a new course to check out if you're in the area. There was one little pass I remember towards the back I think where you go through some sprinklers on your walking path which feel great in the heat, especially since I was in town for a week and not used to the heat being a Seattlite.
21 of 21 people found this review helpful.
17 Helpful / 0 Not
The worst in Augusta . . .isn't so bad at all!!!!!
Pros: 1) Nice signs with Hole #, Par, and distance. The holes are all named too . . . something I am seeing more of and something I greatly appreciate, it just adds to the feel (assuming the holes actually need to be named . . . a course with 9 150' wide open holes will not need to be named).
2) This course is pretty beginner friendly . . .the distance is not overwhelming and the shule/rough areas are not so difficult that you will lose a lot of discs or struggle to recover. Generally you can recover pretty easily from 1 errant shot.
3) Nice large concrete tees available here.
4) Some benches and garbage
cans around the course. They are not on every hole but there are a few. I am sure the benches are appreciated on a 110 degree Georgia day.
5) There is an arboretum on site and you can tell they take care of this old park. There are some really nice plantings and some unique concrete and brick structures on the property. I have said it a bunch, but I love it when these old parks keep the historic stuff and work the disc golf around it. I think it makes for such a unique feeling.
6) #17 is a great hole because of a design feature that I cannot say I have seen regularly. The basket is tucked into a lane between a row of trees and a fenced off area. The row of trees gets increasingly closer and closer to the basket as the basket can be moved further down the alley. I saw three pin positions and the longer the hole goes the tighter the lane. I thought this was unique and an excellent idea increasing the need for accuracy and length making the shot progressively harder at each position.
7) This is a really diverse property ranging from the moderately open park-like holes to some more densely wooded tunnels.
8) Elevation change was used effectively in the design to create some interesting and challenging shots. There are times you will have to adjust your shot because of the elevation.
9) The disc golf shots on this course are pretty good. You need to work the disc both directions and you also need to throw a couple of unique shots like on #3 and #4 and #17. Those are shots that you don't get on every course.
Cons: 1) No maps on the teesigns which is a real negative for the travelling disc golfer.
2) You throw over a road on #3, around a tennis court and across a field where I am sure picnickers will be hanging around on a nice day, you throw along a path a couple of times where walkers might get in your way, and then you throw awfully near the entrance road. All in all I would prefer if these interactions were minimized but here they seem to feel like the norm.
3) The course suffers all too much from the compaction/erosion issue. I know it is an old park and it has seen a lot of use over time, but there are many bare spots, both around the baskets and tees and also in some other areas. The tighter the woods the less turf they have (which is natural) and just points to the need for mulch or some sort of groundcover.
4) The course was confusing in a few spots because the routing didn't seem intuitive. Directionals in 3 or 4 spots would have made it all just fine, but we spent a couple minutes looking around a few times.
5) The distance variation is a little lacking. There are mostly a couple of different lengths that just get repeated so multiple holes have duplicates.
Other Thoughts: If this is the worst that Augusta has to offer I am jealous. This course was way more fun than the 2.68 average rating. I honestly feel like I had more fun here than I did at Lake Olmstead which was rated well over 3.00 discs. Sure the course isn't the most well maintained but I would argue it is more attractive as a course and park than Lake Olmstead mostly because of the variety.
17 of 17 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
A rookie review
Pros: I am a rookie, so keep that in mind while reading any further. This course has plenty of holes that were very technical for me. I not only had to get my technique down, but had to figure out what disc did what in a hurry. Wrong choice means a hunting trip.
Cons: Mostly a good course, but if you go on the weekend there is potential for kids to be really nice and throw your discs back to you. Also you play near a few of the picnic area on the first few holes. After five though you are mostly in the trees until the last few. No choices for more or less challenging tee shots.
Other Thoughts: Overall this is a great course for a rookie like me. It is has enough to it that you should be able to have fun at any level though.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Pendleton King park is a very good disc golf course in a pretty cool city park. Each hole has concrete tee pads and signs noting distance. The layout is fairly easy to follow and mixes up shot shapes and distances fairly well. Moderate elevation changes will come into play on several holes. Seven of the holes have multiple pin positions. Well defined fairways give even novice players an enjoyable round, and good players will be offered a challenge while still being able to post a good scoring round. There are two public restrooms that are in very close proximity to the course. Other amenities include playground, dog park, duck pond, covered picnic areas, large covered pavilion, secluded quite areas with beautiful gardens and fountains, walking trails, tennis courts, and don't forget the tank.
Cons: The signs don't show maps, the distances are not always accurate, and are not representative of both pin positions on holes that have multiples. Playground is sort of close to hole 2, but not usually a problem. Staff will usually start running out park goers well in advance of actual closing time. Some of the holes in the new layout are a bit cheesy in my opinion, and many good holes were removed after reconfiguring. Course is popular and large groups are common on nice days. Pace of play can be slow.
Other Thoughts: PK is one of the parks I play most frequently and I consider it very enjoyable. Augusta has many great courses, and this one should not be ignored. Uses the terrain nicely on almost every hole. It can beat you up, but is not unfair. Definitely worth a try.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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