5 Helpful / 0 Not
Spring Rocks and Summer Rolls! (A Review)
Pros: Okay, so the main Pro of this course is challenge! When I originally started playing it seemed impossibly tough to even finish this course and now it can be done in roughly 1 and 1/2 hours. Long story short it will make a serious "Disc Golfer" out of you. The hole dynamics are well thought out and there are no two back to back holes that feel like shooting the same shot twice. The 4/10 of a mile easy hike "in" means that only people who truly are there for disc golf will be wandering around on the course. Bonus no "riff raff!" The course features gorgeous views and breathe taking scenery along with a very good exercise routine of hiking up and down rolling hills. The tee boxes are in great shape due to some recent work. Signage is the best I've seen of any course I've played yet. The locals for the most part are friendly and always welcome to guide those who are unfamiliar with course. All the DISCatchers are in good working order and minus a little chipped paint here and there, are almost in perfect shape. One of the biggest problems was not having a close by restroom but as of today there was a portable privy right down next to hole one which hopefully will be a permanent fixture. Seasonal Pros:
-Winter: Lower temperatures, with rain comes mud which sometime will "catch" your disc and keep it from rolling away. Low or no grass allows "skips" to come into play much more often. No foliage on the trees opens up all kinds of holes and "windows" to shoot through so you can try shots you would never dare in other seasons. The poison oak is mostly dormant. The vermin that plague nature are almost non existent as well.
-Spring: Temperate nice weather and longer days. Taller Green grass to grab your disc from taking off down the mountain side. Water OB will come into play slightly more regularly with the small tributary creek that runs by #1,#15B,#16,#17, and#18. (The nice part is it's not gross murky pond water and it's not deep.)
-Summer: Longer days more hours to play. Usually the morning fog will make the course cool and still.
-Autumn: Is awesome between late budding grass and fallen leaves the ground has tenancy to try to stop every rolling disc. The weather is super temperate. It is by far the best season for the park.
Cons: So the number 1 gripe for every person on this course would be the dreaded ROLL! It happens quite a bit but it's something that can not be stopped. The way nature and gravity work, these are things that can not necessarily be helped. On to things that could be helped: A couple of holes are lacking benches which is an easy fix. The lack of trash cans. The understandable parameter on that is, with the course being remote and hilly with no good access road removing the refuse would be quite the headache. People don't always use the 5 that are provided on the course but good samaritans usually come through and pick up after the slobs. The fact that the closest water source is all the way back down at the entrance means you need to pack in a lot of water if you are going for a full day. (No big deal, what's a gallon of water but 8 extra pounds.) Other year round pitfalls are poison oak. (Leaves of 3 let it be.) The afternoon winds can wreak havoc on your score. (For most of the time they can go unseen or unfelt.) Seasonal Cons:
-Winter: That same mud that might save you from a roll can also put you on your back. It may be hard to grasp footing for some shots. Colder areas that don't get sun may become icy. No grass ground cover can also lead to an over abundance of roll away discs.
-Spring: It's in the air and all over the ground. Be expectant of possible allergies. Poison Oak starts to bud out and the deer ticks start to come out to play too. Oh lord I almost forgot our friends the mosquitoes, lots of those in the afternoon/evening.
-Summer: Can get insanely hot so best to go out early or late to avoid heat stoke and such. Western diamond back rattle snakes will start to come out but for the most part they stay away from the heavy traffic areas. (If you find yourself off the beaten path best to keep your eyes and ears open.) Poison Oak and ticks continue.
Autumn: Can be the same as summer with a little less heat, but it's just so darn pretty.
Other Thoughts: So all in all this entire course is great! A great challenge and good day if you come prepared. I highly suggest making this a double round kind of day if you're driving a good distance to get here. (Don't complain too much about the $5 parking fee it goes to keeping the course open and an awesome place to play.) If you come out a lot buy a season pass for $45 and then you can go as many times as you like for free. Get out early with good attire like trail running or hiking shoes. Light colored pants and a short sleeve shirt with a wind breaker. (Light colors are good to keep you cooler in the heat of the day and it's easier to spot intrusive insects on lighter colors.)
You don't have to start with the front 9 and I really suggest if you are having a long day at it, that you play the back 9 first. It's a little easier and not quite as big in elevation changes. To get there, walk straight up the mountain from Tee pad 1 to reach tee pad 10. Bring lots of liquid and some light snacks with, to keep your body in good shape for the amount oh hiking around you'll be doing. Bug spray and allergy meds and sunscreen aren't a bad idea either. When it come to the terrible rolls just watch your play style at this course and it will defiantly cut way down on that factor. Try driving your disc the opposite directions of the sideways slopes to stop rolls. Feel free to have good up shot placement instead of going straight for the basket. Most of the time if you hit any part of the basket besides chains or inside it will end in disaster. (Birdie to Triple Bogie) Watch the grass and the trees at the top of any hill you're shooting up or over, you'll see the telltale signs of jet streams you didn't previously see. Get good kicks in the dirt for good solid footing on the heavy slopes to avoid rolling down the slope yourself. Most of all have fun out there, it was designed to be a pro level course so even if you don't shoot well at least you finished it like a pro.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Great course in the Napa hills
Pros: The first thing I noticed was that this course is separated from the rest of the park by quite a bit of distance. There is a sizeable walk to get to it from the parking lot, so the only people you see on the course are disc golfers for the most part. There are the occasional bike riders on the path leading up to and going through the course, but I have never really seen them causing any issues. The course itself was very well designed and is located on a beautiful piece of land. Tee pads are in great condition, some being recently replaced, with good signage and brooms and fire extinguishers at pretty much every one of them. All tees have at least one bench, but most have multiple benches or chairs of some type. There are multiple pin locations for every hole. Great use of elevation throughout the course. Each hole uses the natural terrain very well and no two holes feel the same. The course is spread out over a large area so you won't have to worry about crossing fairways too much unless you really shank one. This course is very challenging and gives you ample opportunity to use every shot and disc in your bag. A true equal opportunity course. Righty or lefty, backhander or forehander, no one throwing style is favored on this course. In fact, to do well on this course would require virtually all throwing styles, including overhand.
Cons: The infamous "Napa Roller". Although I really consider this part of the challenge and not necessarily a con, there is some frustration to be had when otherwise good shots hit the ground and roll down the hill farther than where you originally threw them from. Due to the elevation changes throughout the course, one can get winded going up and down the hills all day chasing frisbees. Then there is that long walk back to the car when you're already tired from playing your round.
Other Thoughts: Bring plenty of water and snacks (I suggest trail mix). You will be tired, hungry and thirsty during a round here so be sure to bring these items with you. Also, I forgot to mention that they sell discs in the little kiosk at the front of the park. The prices actually aren't too bad. There is a practice basket right next to the parking lot and bathrooms. I like to practice putting while waiting for friends to arrive, so I find this rather convenient.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 12 Not
Pros: You better bring your best shots
Holes - mostly - easy to find.
Cons: One or two places had trouble finding basket location.
Other Thoughts: This course has a great amount of shot varieties. It's much like Stafford in Novato. Pads are great. Lots of shots that will ROLL DOWNHILL in a heartbeat. Play accordingly. Lots of fun to be had here, and, there is camping - tent or RV. Horseback riding, archery course. And more.
0 of 12 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Great Home Course
Pros: MY home course, so I am a little biased.
-Very technical. During the winter the course is in the short pin positions due to daylight hours.This does cause most of the shots to be short and technical. Only about 9 pins are visible from tee pads.
-During summer pins are usual in long positions, which makes the course that much more difficult.
-"Napa Rolls"....Some don't like it, but it makes the game much more challenging.
-Beautiful outdoor secluded scenery. Its not in a city or urban setting.
Cons: -Pay to play.
-Very HOT in the summer, sometimes up to 100 degrees in the middle of the day. Very dry, bring lots of water.
Other Thoughts: This course is great for a short round in the winter, or long round in the summer. Tee pads are being replaced by concrete, and signage is really good. The major drawback of this course is the 1/4 mile walk to the first tee, and the constant elevation change. For those not in good shape, take your time as the course can wear you out. If you can shoot par on this course, most other courses are putty in your hands!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Difficult fun in wine country
Pros: Set in a large wilderness park. Feeling of remoteness, even though there were a number of groups playing. The entire course is surrounded by gorgeous, untouched scenery. Variety of different drives required from teebox. Retrieved all 3 temporarily lost discs! Nice teeboxes and decent baskets. Got lucky my first time playing here as most baskets were playing short.
Cons: Grass is very high right now, making me very glad that I wore khakis. Lots of poison oak, even in the fairways. Ideal to play with a partner to help spot & look for discs. I spent nearly 90 minutes more that I should have looking for & retrieving lost discs. Bad drives on both 6 & 9 got stuck in some tall trees. I was lucky enough to get one down with a rock, and the other with a young DGer willing to climb and shake the tree!
Other Thoughts: Getting into and out of the course is about a half mile hike into the foresty area from the parking lot. The office at the entrance gate stocks about 75 brand new Star/Champion discs for sale. $Five dolla, no holla! You get a map of the park, along with a hand drawn map of the DG course & some hospitality. The teebox at #4 makes for an ideal smoke spot.
Uniqueness: A (very rugged & hilly; toughest course I've played; worth it tho)
Difficulty: A+ (long; elevation changes; narrow in spots; super hungry trees)
Fun factor: B+ (pars are rewarding; familiarity will lead to more fun)
Aesthetics: A (untouched scenery; clean; beautiful integration of course with nature)
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Tough to beat Napa
Pros: I have played pretty much all the courses in the Bay Area, and this one has recently become my most favorite. There's just so much to recommend it. A few of the best attributes:
-Nice layout, use of terrain
-Nice variety of holes, some short, some longer, different curves
-Great shaded chill spots next to every hole. Especially crucial cause it gets hot out there
-Super well marked, best tee signs I have ever seen at any course
-Nice walk out to the course
-Never anyone there, even on a weekend
-Plenty of birdieable holes
-At the same time, plenty of challenging holes where if you hit some trees you could easily end up with a 6
-Also some tough landing areas, where if you miss it you could roll a long way
-Not too far away (50 mins from Berkeley)
Cons: -Hot hot hot. Just played on a July Sunday and it was 90 degrees. It's manageable, but definitely takes something out of yo.
-A lot of trees, and the trees are easy to get stuck in
-A couple holes are kind of stupid in the sense that the pathway for driving is so small, it's a little ridiculous. But even those make for decent holes cause if you get through they are typically short
-It could do with one or two longer holes. There are not a lot of holes where you can really open up and let loose. Although that can be good if you are playing with a mixed group because length becomes less of an issue.
-Needs better tee pads, but really not a big issue.
Other Thoughts: I just really like playing this course. it's well put together, beautiful terrain, good conditions. Fun days guaranteed for sure.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: -Beautiful setting
-Nice footpath to first tee. Feels like your hiking into secluded back country to play a round. This was great being a visitor to the course but I can see how it can get old if you're a local.
-Very well maintained
- Good tee pads with brooms and benches
-Great elevation change
-Full spectrum of technicality with most holes being technical to very technical
-Not too busy. My buddy and I came in the middle of the day and we only saw one other group playing the course
-Nice signs that indicate basket placement
-uphill and downhill holes
Cons: -No dogs allowed (disc golf is a little lonely without my furry companion)
-Needs some longer, more open bomber holes
-Pay to play
-Might consider upgrading to cement tees
-Grass can get long requiring some searching to find your disc
Other Thoughts: Although many of the holes are on the short side, they are mostly uphill which requires giving everything you have to reach the basket on your drive. World Class Course. Must play if in Northern Cali
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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