Spring Rocks and Summer Rolls! (A Review)
3 Helpful / 0 Not
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.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Why did I play this course?
0 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: Location is a good. Scenery is beautiful. Good signs, washer system to locate holes. Tee pads are decent too. Weather was nice for a round.
Cons: Muddy after the recent rain. Very hilly, slippery, poison oak very rampant. Pin location on #10 is ridiculous! Many shots are silly in placement. Walk in is long, walk out longer. People not courteous of others on the course. Very easy to lose your disc. $5 to park on muddy grass.
Other Thoughts: First & last time I'll play this course. It's off my wish list. Not a fun round, first time I've said that about any course. Save your time and play elsewhere in the area. Take the time to travel to Vacaville, Geyserville, Rohnert Park, or anywhere else but here.
Lost a light blue sidewinder on #14. Name & number on disc. Call if found please.
0 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Challenging, well-balanced, fair and punishing
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - well maintained with great signage, good quality teepads and newer baskets.
- Lovely setting in a wooded valley, isolated and never crowded
- Great mix of longer/shorter, dogleg left/right, uphill/downhill, & tunnel/open shots. The course design will test your skill-set and range
- I can't think of an especially weak hole design here (possibly 10). Overall, a strong course layout
Cons: - Steep hills EVERYWHERE. To an extent, this is a pro but the constant risk of a shot rolling 50ft+ from where it lands can detract from the fun-factor. And it's not just the discs that roll downhill, your bag, your water bottle, your disc retrieval tool and even your own body will be constantly fighting gravity. My rounds here end with some sore legs.
- There's a 10 minute walk between parking and teepad #1. The course is pretty far from restrooms and water sources. Definitely pack in water.
- This seems to be one of the warmer spots in the Bay Area. A combo of steep hills and heat can wear you down. I'd avoid this course on a hot day.
Other Thoughts: I occasionally play this course when I've grown tired of the Bay Area mainstays. It's designed well but the constant threat of roll-aways and hiking up hills detract from the fun factor. The course design is fair, balanced, challenging and punishing. I'd recommend playing here but it wouldn't be at the very top of my must-play list.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Great course in the Napa hills
2 Helpful / 0 Not
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.
It's a Killer
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Other Thoughts: In a word: "brutal." I happened to play the course on a 90 degree day last week and did not bring an adequate amount of water (plus was sunburned already from the previous day). But the length of the course combined with the elevation changes made this a real struggle. As a player you're basically going to be walking up and down big hills all day. I liked the course though because it was so challenging (probably the toughest I've ever played); I mostly wish I had chosen a different day to play it. I have a lot of respect for this course as a worthy adversary.
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course plays in a secluded corner of a large property. The long walk to the course means that you have that area to yourself, it didn't seem like there would be any interference from non-disc golfers here. The terrain is very cool here, with lots of ups and downs. The hills are used fairly well to create some interesting shots and some tricky greens where roll-aways are definitely a possibility if you don't land your shot carefully.
There is a nice balance here of left and right turning shots, at least in the pin setup I played. The alternate sleeves looked like they'd add some nice variety as well. The rubber tees were in good shape, and provided plenty of traction. There are enough trees on many of the holes that you have to shape some lines. The rough is not all that thick but you will sometimes find yourself having to make tricky recovery shots if you miss your line.
Cons: The signage was not very accurate. It appeared that many of the pin placements have been changed since the signs were made, so the distances and hole shapes were not very useful. Many of the holes required walking up the fairway to see where to throw, and even then there are a few spots where multiple baskets are in view and it can be tricky to figure out where to go next.
I didn't feel like this land was quite used to it's potential. There were a lot of shots where despite the big hills, you threw at a basket at the same elevation as the tee. I liked the use of hilly greens, but more shots that really make you control a disc up or down some of the big hills would have added another level of fun and challenge. It's a real shame not to have a single downhill bomb type shot with the excellent terrain available.
There was some nasty poison oak in spots, keep an eye out if you're under the trees. Some of the grass was getting pretty long when I played, it gets a bit frustrating searching for discs that land in the middle of the fairway.
Other Thoughts: Beginners will find this course a bit daunting, with a long hilly walk and some tricky shots, but with limited punishment it's approachable for most players. More experienced throwers will find this course reasonably straightforward, with a few really interesting challenges.
Note that you're a long way from the car for the entire round, bring a good amount of water and some snacks.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Rubber tees
This course is set in a fantastic multi use park in Napa CA.
Even though it is multi use, the course is set away from other activities in the park.
This scenic park offers great views of Napa and the surrounding area.
The course was not incredibly long, but was a challenge because of the hilly terrain.
Lots of roll away potential.
Offers a variety of shots, and didn't favor any particular shot.
Dense oaks provide tough obstacles if you have an errant shot.
Birdies are available if you can get a disc to stay on the fast greens.
Putting offered some pucker factor because of the fast greens.
Really nice benches at tee boxes were welcomed because this course is a hike.
The place was not busy at all!! (not sure if that is normal)
Cons: Not a lot of cons to think of.
Never got a top of the world type shot despite the hilly terrain.
The only restrooms are at the entrance which is not that close to the course.
Greens were so fast that it seemed that there was maybe to much luck involved on some of them.
Other Thoughts: This course was set up in an medium distance when I played it. The flow was nice and the trails were easy to follow. We had no problems with thistles and foxtails, but I heard that is a problem during the summer. This is a hike, but not bad compared to other mountain style courses I have played. That being said, a pair of boots would be a good call.
This place is definitely worth playing if you are in the area!
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
worth the trip
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has a really neat layout, with a nice combination of holes and differing pin locations. Good signage with a round disc pointing out the basket location, as A, B or C. Despite this, rarely can you see the basket you are throwing to. You will get to use all sorts of throws to get around the tree obstacles, though it is certainly within reason to score a few birdies with good shots.
Cons: The tee boxes are not very solid, basically carpeted dirt, and the limited space can make it difficult to figure out which basket you should be throwing at. Also, the numbers on the basket are not very visible, and rarely pointed at the tee box, so you have to walk all the way to them, and around them before you figure out what number the basket has. Of course, the dreaded Napa roll can and will strike when you screw up, but that is part of the game.
Other Thoughts: Skyline Park is a great multi-use park with hiking, biking, horseback riding and an archery course. You can camp out there, and all the activities are well worth the minimal $5 per car entry fee. There is a nice walk from the parking lot to the first tee, maybe a half mile, and I would highly recommend hiking shoes or boots. I played it in my Chacos, and the steep slopes and high grass when you go off course make for difficult walking. There is also a good bit of poison oak and brambles, so long pants are not out of the question.
This is the first course i ever played, and is pretty difficult compared to the others. I go out there every time I am in Napa, and really love it. It's basically my California home course, and easily as challenging, though different, from my La home course, Buhlow.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Roll away in the Napa Wilderness
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Skyline Wilderness offers excellent variety and is absolutely worth the $5 entry fee. When you enter the park and start the 10-15 minute hike to Hole #1, it is very easy to see why this is a top-notch course.
Although this is a muti-use facility, the disc golf course is well separated from other activities.
More than a few times during the round, I found myself soaking in the panoramic views and taking pictures instead of concentrating on my next throw.
The tee signs on every hole certainly helped with navigation.
The teepads were a mix of concrete and rubber. I understand the locals are working to install concrete pads on all of the holes. There were also brooms and benches on most of the teepads, which is very nice.
The baskets are not new, but they are in good shape.
Elevation is utilized very well on most of the holes here. I heard a few groups mention the "Napa Rollers" that easily turn a birdie into a bogey or double bogey. Thankfully, I did not experience my own Napa Roller until #14.
While there were plenty of warning signs for the local wildlife, I did not see any boars, snakes or anything else.
There are plenty of opportunities to throw hyzers, anhyzers, thumbers and pretty much any other shot you are able to throw.
Similar to other California courses I have played (Coyote Point, Ryan Ranch, Stafford Lake, etc) this is a physically demanding course and it is not for the faint of heart. Bring plenty of water, snacks, etc. You will not want to run back to the parking lot in the middle of a round here.
Cons: As other reviews have mentioned, there is no huge downhill bomber shot. While the terrain certainly allows for it, I was somewhat disappointed in the lack of at least 1 opportunity to truly grip it and rip it here.
I'm reaching now, but the lack of concrete teepads is always a con for me. I also noticed that some of the rubber teepads were too short. I typically use a 3 or 4 step approach and did not have enough room on several holes.
Other Thoughts: The $5 entry fee will come along with a rough course map. I found that the map was not completely accurate. However, this only caused a problem for me between #13 and #14.
Napa is not for beginners, especially those that do not know how to handle constant elevation changes. Having said that, any new players should check out some other courses and then find a guide and get to Napa for a very challenging and fun disc golf experience.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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