2 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: The course plays through a pretty college campus with some small rolling hills. Several holes have a little bit of elevation change that adds a little interest, the long hole over the ravine is the best of them. There are some scattered trees on a few holes that add a little bit of shot variety. There are decent sized concrete tees and basic tee signs. The grounds are nicely maintained.
Cons: Let's start at the beginning. Hole 1 was redesigned, apparently for safety, but now it plays perpendicular to the tee through thick trees that make a kneeling drive or a roller the only ways to get to the hole on your drive. It also plays directly over a sand volleyball court for a little extra excitement. The rest of the holes are pretty much wide open and easy, with no real challenge or variety. Many holes play very close to roads, parking lots, sidewalks and buildings, making for lots of safety issues and conflicts with the large numbers of students that can be walking through the area. The tees have an odd texture that with even a little bit of moisture gets really slick. A few signs were missing, it's not terribly hard to figure out where to go though. There is no public parking anywhere near the course, the lot by the first tee is permit parking and you risk a ticket if you park there. The course plays away from the parking lot and never comes back, so you pretty much backtrack the entire course to get back to where you started, if it's not busy the course plays pretty much the same backward as it does forward.
Other Thoughts: This is a nice feature to have on a college campus, and is a good exposure for the sport to get new players interested, but unfortunately it's poorly designed for any level of player. New players will find the hole lengths ok, but there aren't enough obstacles to make it interesting, and less accurate players will have even more safety issues. More experienced players won't find any challenge or variety here, it's only worth a stop to check off your list, or if you happen to live in the dorms right next to the course.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Not a lot...
Nice big 4x8 pads.
A trash can at 5's tee and a porta-john between 1's tee and 2's pin.
The course is used so rarely that tee pads and baskets are in pretty good shape.
Hole 8 is the one good hole on the course. At over 400 feet, shooting over a valley and water (a tiny creek), it lends this course one shred of credibility.
Lots of cute wimmins running around the place.
Cons: Street signs around the campus are dark and hard to see, adding to the frustration from the odd road layout.
No mention of the golf course in any university signage, and no mention at the proper parking lot, if you find it, that you may be ticketed (the two campus cops I ran into before teeing off said late Saturday afternoon is a safe time to play).
No course map, no info kiosk, no scorecards, nothing to point you towards the first tee.
No signs between tees.
Nary a bench in sight.
Although the tee pads are very big, the gravel placed on top of them makes the surface a death trap with a hint of moisture.
The oft talked about hole 1: Good news is, it's been moved from its previous location between the residence halls. Bad news, it's been moved about 120 degrees from its original location, so the teepad points in completely the wrong direction. Between the tee and the pin, there is: 1 giant tree that completely obscures a straight shot, a sand volleyball court to the right that blocks hyzer shots, and a clump of trees to the left that blocks anhyzer routes. Ironically, this may be the only true par 4 on the course. It's only 256 feet, but you need at least two shots to get around all of the obstacles in front of you to have a straight shot to the pin.
No tee sign at 2. The post is there, but it appears the sign has been removed by vandals.
No sign, or post, at hole 4 either, but you don't really need one. The 'hole' is a ridiculous 175-ish shot straight in front and slightly below you, with nothing in between to add challenge. Just a stupid empty-your-bag and try for an ace hole.
Hole 6's tee is in the firing range for 5's pin if someone throws a big hyzer. With both tees facing the same direction, you may be about to tee off at 6 and not even see the disc that's about to conk you in the back of the head.
The sewer drain near 6's basket looks eager to eat approach shots that fall short of the basket.
Grip-locked shots from 8 will head towards the road parallel to the fairway to the right, or mis-played hyzers will go into the parking lot to the left.
Over-eager shots on 9 could possibly bean the students coming to and fro on the path directly behind the pin.
After hole 3, the course basically goes farther and farther away from the parking lot. With no place in between to park, you are left with a 3/8 mile walk back to your car.
All pars over-estimated by at least a stroke. Par 4 250 footers and hole 8 as a par 5? Stupid.
Other Thoughts: Bottom line? Abysmal.
THE worst excuse for a course in the St. Louis area, and a course that should be avoided at all costs unless you REALLY have nothing better to do.
Even the 9-holer at Roxana is better than this course. Better yet, take the extra 15 minutes and drive north to Rockspring in Alton, or south to Woodland in Collinsville. Both 18-hole courses and FAR, FAR superior.
It might serve as a good place to introduce new players to the game if it weren't for the missing tee signs and the god-awful worst hole I have ever seen, aka hole 1.
To shorten the walk back to your car, cut through the Prairie Residence Hall, and grab a snack or a soda from the vending machines, since you will have worked up an appetite or a thirst during the hike.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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