Great potential, lack of maintenance
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Beautiful park
- Great hole variation
- Decent baskets
- Good mix of wooded/open holes
Cons: - Major lack of direction/signage
- Horrible tee-pads (sometimes you're better off not throwing from the tee-pad)
- General lack of maintenance
Other Thoughts: There are quite a few DGCs in the Twin Cities and in its surrounding areas, and most of them have the potential to be great courses. When looking at courses like Blue Ribbon Pines or Bryant Lake Park, you see a great course both from the technical aspects of the game, all the way down to the nice landscaping and navigational signs to ensure players never get lost.
When I went to Acorn Park for the first time, we weren't quite sure where the first tee was, and ended up looking around by the 18th hole for a while because the "rules" sign was by the last hole and not the first for some reason. After getting direction from another player, we found the first hole and started the course.
One thing I did not particularly enjoy about my first visit to Acorn Park was how busy it was, but honestly if it hadn't been this busy we probably would not have been able to navigate the course. At least 4 or 5 times throughout the day we ended up in a spot where we didn't quite know where to go next. The worst case was on Hole 9 where after finishing, you can see the basket for Hole 10, but there's no indication of where the tee is and you actually need to walk downhill in the woods to get there.
Other than the poor signage, the tee-pads were the only other real bother at Acorn Park. The tee-pad on hole is un-usable as it is deeply cracked right in the middle. Some other tee-pads were very short as well.
Once you've sifted out the bad about Acorn Park, you can really start to take away all the good that this course has to offer. The photos that were uploaded are a great example of some of the beautiful views offered by a few holes at Acorn Park, especially in the wooded areas, but definitely when you come out of the woods as well.
There were definitely a few tricky holes as well, some required your shot to hook far left, some far right, and others required you to throw a certain distance to avoid water (hole #1), or to avoid landing in bushes/rough (holes #8, #13?, #18).
This course also neighbors both Lakewood Hills (White Bear Lake), and Kaposia Park (St. Paul), which can provide an all-day event for disc golf for those who are up to the challenge. When we played, we hit Lakewood Hills first and then came here, and that worked out perfect.
At the end of the day Acorn Park is a Very Good course, and could easily become an Excellent course with the simple addition of some signposts. (Although some new tee-pads on select holes wouldn't hurt either).
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Every type of shot is required here. Good open space and wooded area. Frequent elevation change without it being significant drops or ups at a time. Few multiple tee pad for short throwers.
Cons: Good luck finding your way without asking someone or being without anyone who has played here before. The baskets are hidden most of the time so you have to run up lookin for it. Swamp water on a few holes. Hole one looked very gross and unappealing thankfully the rest of the course isnt like that. Other water hazards seem a little more natural. Very crowded course.
Other Thoughts: Great course. Pretty challenging. Use just about every type of shot. Beginners might struggle a bit. Hole 16 and 17 kind of seem like filler holes.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Course is set in a good sized park that has some hills, water, and woods. There are some extra activities away from the course, so a walking path is the only source of interference. Should be free and clear for DG.
- A lot of the holes here are set in the woods, either in a lot of skinny trees, or fairways carved out of gnarly woods. Those in the skinny trees include #1, a shot over water and through a gap or two that finishes right at the end. #2 is another RHFH shot around the trees, #3 is an uphill flick shot with lots of little trees to get around, #4 is a little bitty hyzer shot, #5 is uphill with a few lines to choose from, #10 is pretty much straight, #14 is a little hyzer that drops off to the pin behind a big tree, there is a good variety of lines here, that need good accuracy to hit the pin. Overall, these holes are pretty short, so there is a lot of deuce or die.
- The holes with wider fairways, but thicker rough, pose a different challenge - these are longer with more hazardous areas to find. #6 is a downhill hyzer with nastiness on both sides and water on the right near the pin, #7 also has a lot of crap to avoid directly on the fairway, and #8 is a hyzer over swampy water. Must stay on the fairway, but also on the 'good' parts of the fairway. #9 is trickier, a 475' toss with water left, lots of trees right, and a pin tucked under pine trees. #11 is a longer downhill hyzer over thick rough, with a gap in the woods, and #15 is a tighter uphill shot with big trouble on the right.
- A few holes are a little more open at the end of the course, but are still challenging. #16 is the most straightforward, a 327' shot up and over a hill, while #17 is a downhill shot with trees surrounding the pin. #18 is a very cool hole; the tee shot is over some woods and through a gap, to an open area. Then it is an uphill fairway, with the pin behind a large cluster of trees, open to either a righty or lefty shot, or maybe even a tall overhand, but definitely not straight.
- Elevation changes here aren't too extreme, except for the last couple holes, but it is noticeable on many holes. Uphill shots in the woods are pretty common, and some longer downhill shots over some rough areas.
- Baskets are OK, teepads are fine, signs are not so good. Map is probably a good thing to have the first time through.
Cons: - The holes in the woods are pretty, pretty short. A lot of putter shots with five of them under 215'. The lines are tough, but they are still just approach shots for the most part.
- Seems pretty hyzer heavy, especially on the longer holes. Or, at worst, a straight shot. #1 and #12 might be the only ones that don't accept a RHBH hyzer.
- Asphalt tees jut out from the ground, and the lack of tee signs hurts. A little rough around the edges.
Other Thoughts: - Course itself offers a good variety of holes, there are the shorter ones with good line shaping skills needed, longer holes that offer plenty of hazards on longer shots, and some open holes with tougher approaches. A few longer holes are pretty tough, mainly #9 and #18. Short tees are really short, and good for beginners, long tees are good for more experienced players. Worth checking out at least once, for any skill level, though advanced players will be able to crush the score.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 2 Not
Wonderful design, but old & run down
Pros: -Well designed course with a nice mix of wooded, open, long, short, hyzers, anhyzers, etc. You'll need pretty much every type of throw here.
-Decent enough tee pads, they look like chunks of old blacktop but they work
-Water hazards are nicely incorporated (however one of the ponds was dry and another one was getting pretty close). Can't fault the course for that though, it's been mighty dry here this year.
-The underbrush is cleared away fairly decently from most holes
-Many holes have benches at the tees
Cons: -The whole course had a very run down, dirty feeling about it
-I've never seen so much graffiti in my life, and a lot of it was pretty inappropriate stuff
-Some of the baskets were getting pretty beat up
-The water hazards were extremely unappealing to look at (think fungus and algae)
-Navigation can be mildly confusing the first time here, but it wasn't terrible
-There were quite a few unsavory looking people hanging around throughout the course, and while I didn't see anybody doing something questionable it wouldn't surprise me
-The signs are pointless; half of them don't even have numbers on them
Other Thoughts: This course is fairly old, and it shows. A lot of areas where there should be grass have been reduced to well-traveled gravel which I assume would get very muddy and nasty after a rain. This is especially prevalent around the baskets and right after the tee pads. This fact is exacerbated by all of the traffic this course gets as it is one of the most played courses around, by prepared to wait at each tee.
The course felt very dirty. It probably doesn't make a whole lot of sense but once you go there for the first time you'll see what I'm talking about. Everything has graffiti on it. The tee pads, while still acceptable, are getting worn down. The baskets are beaten up. The ponds are gross. Some of the people there look like they might have bathed in those ponds... you get the picture. I realize the only way to fix some of that is to charge a fee, but it's worth noting.
Navigation for the most part wasn't too bad, I only got turned around once; and it's possible that was because it was getting pretty dark out. The signs are 4x4s stuck in the ground that may or may not have a hole number written on it in Sharpie. The signs are worthless. Also, some of the baskets did not have hole numbers on them either, although no baskets are close enough to each other for it to get confusing in that regard.
On to some positives now: this course is a very nice layout. It provides you with the opportunity to throw all your discs using all your throwing styles. There are elevation changes on a number of holes as well as water. Between those two challenges and trees there is something to be weary of on every hole on the course; there is essentially only one "wide open" hole. I was fairly skeptical of the course after pulling into the parking lot, but give it a chance it; you won't be disappointed. With some equipment maintenance and some TLC this would be one of the top courses in the region and I would most likely consider giving it a 4.5... but, because of the general disrepair of the course I'll elect to give it a 3.5 with the potential for so much more. I certainly would come back to this course.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Old School Intermediate Course Showing It's Age!
Pros: I played very early on a lovely July morning so wasn't bothered by the crowds here. I met up with Dennis part way through and he showed me the way. Everything here is showing it's age. The signs are old with lots of grafitti. The teepads are older, some are smaller than you would want. This is an intermediate length course that has had a lot of use over the years. It's fairly tight in places and has has some nice enjoyable ACE runs. # 4 and # 5 are both cool little ACE runs. # 17 was a difficult teeoff through a narrow slot in the trees with it's basket hidden in the trees, probably one of the tougher holes on the course.
And # 18 was a fun ending hole giving you (or me at least) a chance to let one rip downhill.
A doe walked out of the brush probably 75 feet from me and just sat and watched me. I looked at her and she looked at me. It was pretty cool with us just checking each other out for probably 2-3 minutes. A chance for a little nature in a metro park setting.
Cons: Advanced to pro players won't find the challenge here that they're looking for but, Hey, there's plenty of other courses in the Twin Cities area that provides them the challenge they're needing.
Everything here felt a little dingy and old and rundown, from the signs to the pads to the baskets and combined with the litter and grafitti, it just left the experience kinda empty for me. I can't quite explain it but I wanted more because I mostly liked this course and park.
Other Thoughts: One thing I really liked about Acorn DGC is the fact that they (I don't really know who they is) have left the orginal course in it's orginal length/distance. No-one has come in and moved this basket 50 feet farther back into the bushes to make that hole harder and thus ruined the orginal beauty or pin placement. Where I hail from, (Washington state), on a couple of my favorite courses, the advanced to pro players have moved every basket on courses like Acorn, trying to make them more challenging. And the courses are now confusing with 5 different layouts. Acorn retains it orginal solid intermediate course design. It works well.
Acorn could really be served well by putting in new signs. Many of the area courses (Brockway for one) have the simple signs that are vandal proof. Just a pole sticking out of the ground with the # and distance. The local teens seem to love to beat up the white fiberglass metal ones.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - Great combo of wooded and open holes, along with a great combo of long and short holes. The mix up of holes makes for some great play.
- Some elevation changes are quite fun.
Cons: - Extremely crowded
- Wooded areas have many bugs
- Some of the tee boxes are poor
- The course retains water after it rains
Other Thoughts: Fun course to play. As stated by others, the traffic makes the gameplay slow and difficult sometimes, but aside from that it is a very fun course to play.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Good course for technical shot selection. Hard because it is tight easy because it is mostly short holes. Only 9 & 18 are two drive holes and 9 really isn't that long. The trees and tee pad placement make is course challenging.
Cons: There is no real elevation change to speak of. Short course. Very Very crowded! Tee pads need some work.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Good course for beginners, not too long, but still a good distance to be challenging.
Cons: Too many trees, and also easy to lose your disk in the water as the water is often right in the way of play.
Other Thoughts: A good course overall despite the obstacles.
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Not a good course for first timers
Pros: The course is big enough, there are usually people there who will be willing to help you find your disc if you lost it, great for intermediate players, good variations of difficulties through the course.
Cons: this is NOT the place to play your first game. Very tough for beginners, TOO MANY TREES, weird set up for navigating from one hole to the next.
Other Thoughts: this is the course i play on the most, being that i live so close to it, i DID play my first game here actually, luckily, i had a natural ability for getting the disc over the water hazards and not doing to bad for a first timer. Personally I find this course quite enjoyable.
0 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Nice mix of holes in the trees and out in the open. This lets you use your skill shots as well as just step back and throw it as hard as you can.
Cons: It was crowded when I played it, and it sounds like there are always a good deal of people at this course.
Other Thoughts: I will certainly play this course again, and I guess there is something to be said about a course that always has people at it.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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