Great variety of holes, some DULL ones
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Despite the neighborhood leading up to the park, the park is beautiful, clean, and somewhat quiet.
There is a very good variety of holes here, a few 600' long ripper holes (3 & 9), tight short holes (6-8), and good mix of left/right/straight. There is no real huge elevation here, but the rolling terrain is used well to play uphill, downhill, and crosshill. Most notably on the long #9 that plays downhill along a pipeline right of way.
#18 is a memorable signature hole. It is a 380' long anny (RHBH) but just slightly drawn out at first and then a harder turn in the last 75' or so. If your drive is not long enough to get around the turn, you'll be in some thick and thorny rough on the right. You start in an open tee area and then throw into the woods which are framed beautifully by a few large trees. It has a drainage creek that runs the entire length of the left side of the hole. About where you need to cut the corner and turn right, the creek makes a Y-shaped split and crosses the fairway to the right side requiring you to cross.
Slight water is in play in the form of a creek. #1 & 2 play across it, it runs the left side of #6, and as I eluded to it plays a vital role on #18.
The tees are level concrete, decently flush with the ground, and long, wide, and grippy enough.
There are benches on almost every tee I think.
Tee signs were very good with a depiction of the hole and accurate distances.
Cons: There is just one tee. I'm a believer that city parks courses should take up the expense of a short tee installed for first time players and families with smaller kids to help them enjoy and learn some love of the game.
There is just one pin location. Alternate pins here could introduce some real risky greens perched nearer the little creek, out of the wide open spaces and on the edge of some woods, and on the edges of a few ridges and mounds throughout the park.
None of the greens are real risky. They are fairly wide open within 20-30' and pins aren't perched on some of the neat physical features like mounds or ridges, or the edges of ravines. Alternate pins would help.
#13-15 are three throwaway holes, especially the wide open 13. This area really takes away from the course and the holes play too close to one another too. Pins could be tucked into the woods - like the ridge left of 13, or maybe deeper into the woods left of 14. An alternate pin on one of the mounds around the #14 green is what I'm talking about with alternate pins showcasing more of the unique terrain as well as adding some challenge. Or the entire area of 3 holes could be redesigned into 2 really challenging holes playing into and out of the woods for greater distances (not just 20-40').
#17 is also a risky OB, interference hole entirely too close to basketball and baseball areas. The ridge between 16 and 17, and the pond on left, would yield an amazing hole.
I don't think it was identified as such, but the gravel road on 3, 5, and 12 would offer more challenge if played as OB.
Other Thoughts: Alternate pins and second set or tees (longer and shorter in some cases) would create a very well rounded design that even more showcases the park features, introduces more or less challenge, and offers a much more well rounded and varied course.
The park has good variety as I commented on, so it is not boring. You'll get wide open, tight woods, some water OB, long, and short holes that will challenge an advanced player. It just needs some spice and failed to impress me, but #18 was a real winner. A picturesque beauty of good disc golf holes with good design using the physical elements of the terrain. A few more options (tees, pins) and a bit of redesign on the last third would help immensely in my opinion.
I'd say this is a White/Blue level course. I never play as well my first time through a course, but it didn't challenge me too bad to consider it purely Blue.
Considering it's out of the way (17 miles east of eastern Raleigh highway system) I wouldn't recommend it over a plethora of others in the area, and especially considering the great courses west in Durham! It is definitely worth a play if you have the time. I didn't regret it.
After pulling into the park, you should pull immediately into the lot on your left and park near the playground. The first tee is on the right side of the lot. There is a nice playground here for kids, and lots of walking trails through the park.
(The order of favorites on my Raleigh trip is as follows - UNC, Leigh Farms, Harris Lake, Cedar Hills, Zebulon, Middle Creek, and Valley Springs. UNC and Leigh farms were runaway winners but with vastly different reasons. Harris Lake was repetitive being almost all wooded, but real fun to play and lots of risk. Cedar Hills, Zeb, and Middle creek were all tied around the average for different reasons. Valley Springs was very fun, but repetitively grueling.)
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Nice sidetrip off the highway
Pros: Good variety of wooded and open holes, as well as some elevation changes.
Park is easy to find, nice course map on the kiosk (take a pic with your cell phone, you may need it)
Nice tee signs on most of the holes
Pipeline adds interesting aesthetics on hole 9.
Cons: No sign to guide you to hole 3 or 6
Hole 3 has a gravel road that can chew up DX plastic, this gravel road can also get busy during the wrong time of day causing a safety hazard.
Baseball field is used as OB on several of the holes which can also be a safety hazard to spectators and players.
A lot of straight shots, more than half the course is striaght shots.
Hole 18 ended the game in a stinky bug infested swamp, a horrible final impression.
Other Thoughts: It's a shame that you walk by the water after hole 16, but the water is never used.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 4 Not
B = Decent course
Pros: What I personally like and how this course stacks up in my list of 18 hole courses:
1) Holes with good risk/reward. Fair, but harsh punishment for bad decisions or execution. == B-
(Less than half of the holes will make you pay for errant throws and on all but maybe 3-4 you really got to screw up royally to be in a position where you can not recover for par.)
2) Holes that have rewarding birdie opportunities for me. I'm a Blue level player (950ish skill) who throws 300' accurately, 360' max. == B
(5 of the 15 par-3's are too long for me and hold no intrigue for me: birdies can never be hoped for, pars are routine and there is only downside that causes any score variation.)
3) More wooded than open - lots of variety of shots required caused by hole shape and topography == B
(Only about 3 holes really force you to shape your shot in a certain/exact way. Another 3-4 require shot shaping but give you enough room where the challenge/fun is diminished. Terrain is limited, and the design takes full advantage of what is available. Hole 1 is the most intriguing and best hole on the course, IMO.)
4) Natural beauty (Appalachian beauty preferred) and seclusion. == C-
(Very drab and scraggly feeling. I am not a fan of the coastal sandhill thing - sorry. Hole 1 is by far the most beautiful. Hole 9 is nice too, but the pipeline ruins the natural beauty. Seclusion is good for about half the course.)
5) Bonus points for multi-throw holes with defined landing zones, good risk/reward and multiple options to play them. == C-
(The 3 par 4's simply add an extra throw - not added "strategery" of placement skills needed than if they were shorter and par 3's. I do like the feel of the pipeline hole, #9, due to the fun-factor of down hill throwing and the shaded grass fairway. But even that hole is a little too routine.)
Other Thoughts: It's all about feeding the addiction, so I ranked this course subjectively based on my own "personal addiction factor". The grades above tell how well this course will draw me back to itself again and again and again. See my profile for specifics on my rating philosophy.
I fancy myself as a connoisseur of good course design and I am a competitive Blue level (950-ish rated) with mid-level power (accurate to 300' with max D of 360'). Since I have played a decent number of courses (150+ 18-hole, 90+ 9-hole as of late 2009), my hope is that players/explorers who have similar addiction tastes will find my ratings list helpful as they choose courses to play and explore.
I fully expect others with different tastes/philosophies to disagree with me.....and that's the fun of things here.
5 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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