Fun Florida Style Course
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Fun, typical Florida Gulf Coast style course, that starts out mostly open by a nice river, meanders into some tighter areas, heads into some light woods, and finishes with a bomb throw.
One set of decent concrete tees, tee signs with hole layouts indicating new alt pin placements, and decent enough baskets make for good times.
The course is very easy to navigate, and flows well, except for the walk between 17 to 18.
The course has a huge fun factor, with plenty of route options, but may be a little short for the big guns.
Plenty of benches, picinic tables, garbage cans, pavillions, restrooms etc also enhance the experience.
Cons: Not much to complain about here. The course may be a little short for some. Some of the tee pads are eroded around the edges and could use a little build up.
The park is multi use with non dg'ers moving around on the course doing thier own things.
Other Thoughts: A solid, fun course. Signs say that the park is for USF staff, students, and thier families to enjoy, and the local police do roll through the parking lot, but as long as you play it cool and act like you belong there, you shouldn't have a problem. Not a must play course, but definately a should play!
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Yet another one of those "tale of two nines" courses. The first one is more open and the second is more wooded, though both feature low scrub as the primary obstacle. On paper, I would assume that the wooded section was the better of the two, though on this course it is the open section that I enjoyed more. The reason is that the first five play around the river, which doesn't impact the course to a great extent and they aren't the most challenging holes, but there is a lot to like. The 1 pin is nicely placed on the bank. 2 runs parallel to the river, and its probably the best of the bunch. While 3 backs up to the river, the basket 4 is back on the edge of the water.
I also like how the scrub affects the mostly open holes and forces shot shaping. This is most evident on 6 through 8. Though more open, the scrub is just as difficult as that in the first few holes of the wooded nine. There is a solid variety of lines to throw and there's a fun factor present.
That said, I don't mean to slight the back nine. The first bunch of holes there offer some varied scenery to go with similarly-difficult, intermediate-level throws. Really there are just more trees around and it's a little more punishing to off-target drives, even if the fairways aren't any more difficult.
The last set of holes here represents one of my least favorite types of holes. They play along a trail that existed prior to the course's construction and which is still in use. The tee for this type of hole is usally set to the side of the trail as is the basket. This trail is fairly wide and it does make a solid fairway, but I just hate holes like this. It doesn't feel like a disc golf hole, if that makes any sense. It feels tacked on. But your mileage may vary with these.
I'm also not the biggest fan of 18. It really needs at least one next tee arrow as there are two paths that lead away from the seventeenth green. Then it's a long walk which feels out of place on the course, making you feel as if you chose the wrong path. The tee is back on the field where the course began, and the hole is a bit underwhelming. It should play to where the practice basket is, on top of a mound. It would be much more finale.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
My first love
Pros: -Ace runs. This course can be difficult at times but there are a lot of fun ace runs! You still have to hit your lines but there are definite possibilities.
-Distance. I think this course is a good intermediate distance course. I think there is only one hole over 330' and only 3 over 300'. Very fun, definitely not pitch and putt.
-Variety. The front 9 is open and the back 9 is wooded making this a very fun course giving you a change of scenery.
-Finesse. The back 9 of this course is short but can still be very punishing if you aren't careful. Hole 15' is a 275-300'ish hole that has maybe an 8' fairway, you definitely have to throw accurate or you will struggle to par.
-Difficulty. This course is a ton of fun and I think the front 9 is unbelievably fun for beginners. If you are a more advanced player it will definitely show on your score, we have some locals who throw -11, but beginners will be able to throw their first birdies here.
-Florida scenery. This course has a definite Florida feel. Three of the first four holes play by the Hillsborough River. However, if you are wise you shouldn't have any problems of losing a disc. There are also palm trees which makes it fun for out-of-towners.
Cons: -OTHER PARK TRAFFIC. Make sure you do not come to this course on holidays, meaning times when they would have events for college students. They very often rent this course out to USF student organizations and they will have parties making 1-9 completely unplayable. The park is also closed whenever USF is closed. So this course is very fun if you get to play it, but there is a chance that it will be bombarded. I suggest calling USF and finding out first.
-Summer. This course gets muggy and dominated by mosquitos in the summer. It is also very prone to flooding.
-Palmettos. This course has saw palmettos all over the back 9, if you go in the woods, you will definitely lose some skin.
-Signs. They aren't accurate.
-Disc traffic. Some of the fairways have overlap so you should be careful that there isn't another disc golfer playing there.
Other Thoughts: If you catch this course at the right time it is a ton of fun, you will definitely enjoy it. However, if you come on a busy day it isn't even worth visiting. I gave this course a 3 for the days that I was on the course by myself. If I were including the chance that you won't get the full experience I would give it a 2.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Concrete Tee's, Signs w/distance,
-Very enjoyable scenery. The moss draped trees and the lake on the front nine, and the Back nine walks through the woods. The back 9 is like a wooded walking trail.
-Excellent Variety of Shots. The Front is easier, more open field with trees to work around and some water to avoid. The back 9 is a lot more technical, Narrow fairways, with doglegs and guarded baskets.
-The Front 9 is very beginner friendly, while the back 9 may be more frustrating to newcomers, it's not terribly difficult. I was able to recover from a few deflected shots, with a decent approach shot. (No tree love today)
-Very clean and well maintained. Garbage cans located throughout the course. Restrooms located near the start/finish
-Good balance of right, left approaches, doglegs, as well as a straight ahead shots. 16 is the Ace Race basket coming in at 191ft
-One could easily get in a quick 9 round.
-Outside of a couple of places, navigation was easy and self-explanatory. .
-Maps are available at the Boat House.
-Has a Good fun factor, and the back 9 is technical and challenging.
-Other activities on site as well
Cons: -Here is the big one; This park is for USF students only! *See first paragraph in Other
-The front 9 primarily, could be unplayable if there are a lot of people using the park. When I played, it was dead, but I could see this park being extremely busy and unplayable on certain weekends.
-There are a number of times when the fairways play close to each other, and a couple of fairway crossings! After you finish 17, you'll follow the path out in front of the 10th Teepad. Then you follow that back up, to where the path crosses the 9th fairway, near the basket. So heads up.
-This may be on the park's map, but... just know that to get to 18, you have to backtrack out by crossing 10's teepad, down the trail, across the 9th fairway and the teepad will be on the other side of the white storage on your right. (Solely a first time only issue. I used an outdated map)
-The Front 9 and the 18th fairway all play around a common area. This is subject to any number of park activities. It would also behoove the park to put up "Beware of Flying Discs" signs throughout the park.
Other Thoughts: First order: I spoke with the lady in charge today and asked her about a Visitor Fee. She said "There is no fee; you must be escorted with a USF Student, Faculty, or Staff member." She then said "They don't check Id's all that often, BUT!!! ...if you give them ANY reason to, they will!" If you don't have a school ID or you are not the guest of someone with an ID, they will escort you out. ...if you give them a reason to check you for an ID!
The front 9 plays more like a rec course, but it does have a very nice setup. It made me think of the 22nd street course in Tampa. The back 9, on the other hand, was totally different. It was more challenging, with more tight technical shots. I'd almost classify as two 9 hole courses that play back to back. Just because they are so completely different.
I had a really good time here, and it is a lot of fun to play. If you can, check this course out! I wouldn't consider it a destination course by any mean, but it is a fun course! The good news is, it's not very far from I-75. If it was closer to where I lived, and it wasn't a "USF Only" course, I'd definitely frequent it.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
First 9 are great!
Pros: Scenery is great, felt right at home here in central Florida. Tee pads are in good shape (concrete) and signage is very helpful. Course has a great natural flow that makes it very easy to locate the hole for the most part. River was very high at the time we played, putting it within 20 feet of one basket. Definitely a challenge and a great use for those floating discs!
Cons: College kids all over the place, walking over fairways. My wife drove once and almost (literally) hit some of them who where walking across the course. A little frustrating that they show no regard for sports in play, but some kids are just like that. Also, we played in late April, and the back 9 was so overgrown with standing water that the mosquitos were terrible. We weren't able to finish the end of the course for this reason.
Other Thoughts: Will play again in the winter when mosquitoes are gone and we can actually finish the back of the course.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
An Enjoyable Play
Pros: Located on the Univ. of South Florida Campus. 18 hole course that features good Innova Disc Catcher baskets, sufficient cement tee pads and nice color signage marking hole number, distance and preferred flight path. There is very nice balance; the front 9 features a primarily open course with some strategically placed trees, while holes 10-17 take you into the woods before coming back out into the open for 18. Paths in the woods are well groomed and manicured. Many birdie and even ace possibilities exist yet the woods and palmettos will keep most advanced players honest and interested.
Cons: Will not appeal to those who prefer distance- the longest hole is around 360 feet. Doesn't really provide one the opportunity to throw an array of shots. One must be mindful of pedestrians/trail hikers and the ropes course & tower on the one end of the course gets heavy use. The potential to see unwanted critters in the woods might scare away the squeamish, although I saw none the day I played.
Other Thoughts: On a weekend visit to Tampa, I played the course twice- once by myself and once with some friendly locals who invited me to play doubles. I was very pleased with this course after the disappointments of the two Ft. Myers-area courses I played. It rewards accuracy and placement and the relatively short distances make it beginner-friendly. Although Riverfront Park is for USF students only, I experienced no difficulty in trying to play here. Water is present bordering holes 2 and 4 but with a conservative approach shouldn't be a factor. (Don't go in- A "Beware of Alligator" sign is posted behind basket 4 !!).
This is a good, well-maintained course which I'd play with great frequency if I lived in the area.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Mix of some open and some tight holes, variety of obstacles and challenges. Usually not very busy. The seven tighter holes in the back nine have improved as they've gotten more use. After playing the tight holes, it's nice to have 17 and 18 out in the open to end on a couple different holes.
Cons: I would prefer a few more holes over 300 ft - #18 is really the only one, and too many holes are 200-250ft. Most of the back nine (except for 17 and 18) are similar tight holes that are rather overgrown (although better than they used to be) and easy to lose discs. A couple holes in the front nine are too close to picnic pavilion, so people are often too close, so you have to skip the hole or play it very safe to avoid hitting someone. In general, the course is mixed with many other activities going on. Fenced park for USF means limited hours. After heavy rains, the basket for hole 4 and tee for hole 5 can be underwater.
Other Thoughts: In general, this is a pretty nice course. It's also the closest course for those of us living in Tampa. Be careful not to lose a disc in the river! A few of the holes play very close to it. I agree with another reviewer - I've overshot hole 4 and landed in the river too...
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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