7 Helpful / 0 Not
'Sweet' Advanced Level Course
Other Thoughts: Course is situated in a neighborhood level park of about 50 acres, which, typically for this region, features rolling piedmont terrain and semi-mature to mature canopy. Large areas of this park have been cleared and grassed, so the course has only a few holes exhibiting the 'tunnel carved through the forest' style. Park also features a recreation center and many other amenities, which are buffered by the park's land.
It should be noted that this park is located in a Charlotte neighborhood with a very dangerous reputation. Extra care should be taken regarding personal safety and the security of valuables, especially near nightfall. Use common sense and remain alert when playing here.
Course is fairly well sequestered from other park activities although some walking paths are interlaced with the course on the front side. Although this reviewer has only rarely experienced play delays at Sugaw, it is obvious at a glance that this course receives a fairly high amount of foot traffic, as worn areas around tees and targets are starkly evident. Some of these issues have been ameliorated with the addition of mulch. Course is well drained and no serious issues are evident, even soon after a rain event, but the course can get somewhat sloppy after same, especially in the more wooded areas.
Park's amenities are superior, as are tees, equipment and signage. The course features a practice basket, a returning 8 (front) and returning 10 (back), separated by the entrance road. Sugaw Creek DGC is very compact spatially and the park's topography is primarily flat, with fairly subtle and gradual elevation changes throughout. Most all fairways are amazingly flat. A great deal of this course's design was dictated by the existing cleared areas, meaning the course was primarily installed (as opposed to built - wholly carved out of virgin forest). This method certainly reduces the time, expense and labor of realizing the finished product, and as a result, many holes and tees are secreted in tree lines, while fairways play out over the cleared and grassed areas. Holes are also often played between 2 open grassed areas, with a 'gate' in the tree line being the major restriction in the fairway.
The front side's routing is a bit convoluted but there are no vex some way-finding issues, while the back circles the park's north side in a counterclockwise fashion. Average hole length for the 18 is just over 300'; 14 holes are between 240' and 350', which means that not only does the course suffer at bit from relatively static hole distances, but also, only fair to average power is needed to score well. This aspect of the course combined with the course's overall 'flatness' might help more inexperienced players gain consistency with throws in this general distance range. Lower speed discs can work very well at Sugaw Creek Park DGC.
7 holes are essentially 'straight', with 4 of these featuring obstacles in the middle of the fairway. This yields options for the golfer's preferred shot shape from the tee and generally this reviewer finds these types of holes more 'fun'. Options are good for the golfer. The remainder of the holes is well balanced between each spin's stable shot shape. The roller game is also a strong option for more than 50% of the course's holes. Course features double mandatories on 2 adjacent back-side holes, no doubt to channel play in the desired direction and to 'protect' the 18th tee. The more wooded fairways are plenty wide, certainly considering the hole distances, and are of an almost uniform width. #7's tee deserves a special mention, as it is a rare example of a severe height restriction right off the tee. The entire tee box sits under a mature southern magnolia and one of its large limbs extends directly over the front of the tee, perpendicular to the line of play. The limb's height is about 5'. Obviously this tee shot is nettlesome for the golfer, as and the limb is well covered with bruises and puckers from errant (point blank) tee shots. The hole is 300'. This type of flight restriction is rare in the piedmont. One wonders if the designer was attempting to reference the so-called 'Indian Trail Trees' found throughout this region. This reviewer enjoys tests like this, but each player will have to decide for him/herself.
Greens are primarily flat and open within the circle. Two greens are elevated, one a top a mulch mound and the other inside the spreading limbs of a crape myrtle. Reviewer has seen the latter idea in play at one of the iterations of the Oak Grove DGC in California and has some reservations about the durability of this particular species for this use. This green, #14, is very fun to play and the idea is sound, albeit underused in disc golf generally. Greens in general are more receptive to fades from counter-spin shots, although the advantage is not excessive, owing to the aforementioned 'flatness' of the course overall.
Roughs are very forgiving overall and recovery chances are excellent throughout, although there are a few 'jail pens' just to keep the golfer honest. These areas will be readily apparent after the golfer's initial round.
#18's target is blind from the tee, but #1's target is clearly visible from same. This might cause some confusion the first time through, although a 'short' drive at #1 from #18's tee could result in a surprise birdie at #18 to finish the round. Reviewer is uncertain if this 'feature' was intentional or the result of the space limitations at the park.
Sugaw Creek DGC is another solid offering in the Charlotte area, as I'm certain many readers are 'envious' of hearing and represents a good learning platform for golfers to ascend to more challenging courses. Scratch golfers may be disappointed, as the course could almost be classified as 'deuce or die'; really only scores in the low 40s would be competitive here. Perhaps they might try playing off-hand...
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Fun, moderately Challenging
Pros: Absolutely had a blast playing! I'm not a great player, but am fairly good, and found this course to be fun, fair and challenging. The fair ways were kinda tight (on the left side of the course), but not so bad that you had no-shot trying to get back on the fairway.
The course was also very well marked. We didn't have any problem navigating it even though it was our first time. It's also flat so you don't burn yourself out climbing up and down hills. Some might find this as a negative, but I play a ton of hilly courses, so this was nice.
Cons: From my opinion, none really. The tee pads were a bit short, but if you don't have a long run up (which I do) the short pads are no issue.
Other Thoughts: Hole one is alongside the entrance, so a disc that flips, or goes long can get in the road and run over. Same on hole 10 (I think, to the right of the entrance) where you tee off with the highway within range of a flipped disc or a roller gone very bad!
Totally enjoyed the course and if I had enough time, would have played it several times.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pour some Sugaw on Me
Pros: 1) Another wooded course with discatchers is always appreciated because they are by far the most visible baskets for this type of course.
2) Kiosk at the first hole for information and league postings etc.
3) Nice recycled plastic signs like the older Charlotte courses. These signs have Hole #, distance, par and a general map of the holes. The maps aren't the best in the world but they at least give you an idea of the layout of the hole.
4) Just another solid design on a mostly heavily wooded property. There are some more open holes here in terms of turfed areas but there are still plenty of obstacles to worry about on those more open holes. I would say the holes are not as open as the open holes at Eastway, so they maintain the integrity of still needing to execute golf shots and not just distance.
5) This course has a ton of variety because of the varying density of trees and the obstacles. There are a good balance of tight wooded, to somewhat open with key trees, to just a couple with only one or two things to consider on your drive. All in all balance helps make a course better than if it was just one type of hole.
6) While challenging, this course is still fairly beginner friendly. The wooded holes aren't super long so beginners can escape trouble and still be able to recover for pars and bogeys. There also are quite a few holes that are moderately open . . . still some key trees to avoid but plenty of air space to allow for the beginners throws.
7) Very cool trees and plant material on this course. There were a handful of Magnolias on a few places on this course which is a very attractive tree. I also noticed a lot of Ivy in he woods that was climbing some of the mature trees and it was very attractive and depending on the variety in the fall it could look outstanding as they change colors.
8) There is a loop of 1-8 that goes near to the parking lot and then 9-18 goes out and comes back again. I like this feature as a bonus for those hot days or anytime a bathroom might be desired. I would never take away from a courses rating if this wasn't available but I think it deserves bonus points for having this as a feature.
9) Bathrooms are available inside of the rec. center and I am sure there is some sort of refreshment machine too if that is desired.
10) This is a relatively quick play because it is on a fairly small property. The back 10 opens up a little bit and stretches things out compared to the front 8 holes.
11) Typical to Charlotte . . . there are a couple of raised baskets. One is set up on a little mound which doesn't really change the hole much unless you skip off the mound or hit the basket and roll down the hill. A little gimmicky but better than a wide open boring basket in my opinion.
12) Decent variety in shot shaping here. It requires you to throw both directions off the tee and also some varied types of drives not just straight down the fairway. You can throw a roller or two out here, you can even throw a couple of putters on a few holes. All in all good balance and variety on the shots needed.
13) Nice concrete tees are always a
14) Benches and garbage cans are also plentiful enough to keep the course clean and give you a place to rest.
15) Directionals in a few areas to help guide you around but it is mostly intuitive.
16) I was able to use a Top Gun Reference and the title of my review is a reference to Def Leppard (THANKS BROTHER DAVE) . . . how much more can I reference the late 80's and early 90's.???
Cons: 1) Distance variation is not that great. All of the holes basically range between 200'-325' with a couple of outliers. I know this is the old style disc golf course and it does a good job using the property, but a true top notch course has a little of everything including distance.
2) There are a lot of places where the amount of play has taken its toll on the course. There are a lot of worn out areas which are due to the compaction from all the activity will lead to erosion if not repaired. I am trying to be a proponent of courses taking care of these things before thye become a big problem and a detractor for our sport.
3) Walking path comes into play as does the entrance road and even the main round on the perimeter of the course. These are always situations that can and should be avoided if at all possible. Sometimes I understand it just cannot be avoided but it still takes away from the course. This is the reason we need disc golf designers should be involved in the park planning commissions so that these situations can be avoided in the design process.
4) This course is just imply one of those courses where many of the baskets are just slightly out of reach for my best drives which afforded me a lot of drop in pars after a simple upshot. While this may not be a negative for everyone, it is for me. It takes away from the fun and challenge because there is basically no chance for me to birdie many of the holes.
5) The tightness of the course and the compact holes creates a few danger zones (taken right from Top Gun). Fairways running past tees or baskets could be a problem with errant shots.
6) I know this isn't the best
neighborhood, but I didn't have any problems. I suppose I was maybe a little suspicious going in because I had already been warned about it, so when I did encounter people (specifically by the bus stop) I simply got up to the tee and threw quickly. One guy actually asked a little about the sport and where I was throwing to which I pointed at the basket and gave him a very short answer about the game.
7) Vandalism and theft is apparently an issue because #11 basket was gone and I know it was recent.
8) Underbrush can be a problem in a few places around the course. You might be really punished for an errant shot here or there.
Other Thoughts: All in all this is not a bad course. Sure it is not in the greatest neighborhood but the design, flow, and variety of the holes keep it a solid course. It is not championship level (whatever that means) but it is a good Rec/Intermediate course or a virtual deuce or die for Advanced and Pros. It isn't the cleanest course and it is lacking a few things that would set it apart, but it is still another solid Charlotte disc golf course. As compared to the rest in Charlotte it is miles away from the best and maybe that it why it might be underappreciated by the locals, but still enjoyed by first timers.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Technical course with some distance too. The holes that are shorter require accuracy. The longer holes require some accuracy, but open up more. If you do get off the fairway, you can still save par. Very forgiving course, but you could put up a big number if you're not careful.
The course does allow you to be creative with shot selection without too much repercussions if you mess up.
Signs at all tees with distances.
Cons: Seems to be a busier part of town. First few holes play near a busy street, so there's lots of auto noise.
I had a guy ask me for change on one hole and a women ask if I had a cell phone she could borrow on another.
Many of the baskets and tees are close to one another. This is fine, but if you happen to have a group playing up on you who are not very good, you'll be watching over your shoulder a lot.
Other Thoughts: I liked the course overall. The course itself is very easy to walk. There are signs at all the tees and a few that along the course that point the way. The course is played enough that there are worn paths that you can follow. I had never been to Sugaw before and I found it to be very easy to get around.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Easy to get to. A lot of wooded shots at the start that require more than just distance to shoot well. The back portion is more open and allows for some longer throws. The combination should allow various shots. Left hand/right hand neutral. The course is easy to get to and if you feel athletic there are really good tennis courts nearby to hole one and the rec center. I started at 8;30 on Saturday morning and was the only one playing. When I finished there were at least 4 or 5 groups. Go early which I like to do anyway.
Cons: Hole one does not have a tee unless you consider the sidewalk. No basket on hole 17 the day I played. The pole supposed to be holding it was there and I played to hit the pole. Not a lot of hole to hole guidance so follow the most obvious path through the woods.
Other Thoughts: I am 67 and only been playing since March of 2010. I had only played three rounds at home on the coast when I played in Charlotte while on business. While I cannot throw like the youngsters I now can at least break posted pars. I encourage people to go back to their earlier discouraging course. I had improved 16 strokes.
Try to get people to play. I certainly wish I had started earlier and have already found that disc golf players are like fishermen. You don't find many who are not friendly.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
The Charlotte Classic
Pros: Sugaw has a broad appeal for players from beginner through advanced level. The design maximizes the use of the land and provides a nice variety of holes. There are many beautiful old trees that canopy most of the course and make for an attractive setting.
The course is well balanced between technical and power requirements. There are plenty of opportunities to make birdies and score low; however, there is also quite a bit of OB that creates bogey opportunities.
In contrast to some of the bigger Charlotte area courses, Sugaw provides the opportunity for a quick, casual round on a lunch break or after work.
Cons: The land area for the course is on the small side; hence the course does have some crowding and safety issues. The park walking path comes into play on several of the holes in the initial section of the course. The park road is very much in play on holes 1 and 18.
Other Thoughts: Sugaw is a great part of the awesome Charlotte area disc golf scene. At present, North Carolina doesn't have any courses on the DGCR top ten list, but overall I don't see any city that stacks up with Charlotte in terms of the number and quality of disc golf options within a short drive.
Don't be a dirty discer, leave the course cleaner than the way you found it.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Another Charlotte gem
Pros: The course plays through a mostly flat park. The front 8 play through woods with nice underbrush waiting to punish errant drives. You'll need to hit tight lines between the trees, but if you do there are plenty of birdies available. A couple shots call for low ceiling distance, especially the tee placed underneath the canopy of a nice old tree. The back 10 open up a little more into grassy areas with mature trees. You can throw some bigger drives here, but there is still lurking rough and some ob roads to contend with.
There is a nice mix of ace runs and holes where many players will pull out a distance driver, which keeps things interesting. The course plays nicely balanced for righty or lefty players, even the more open areas of the course have enough trees to force some interesting lines. The flow of the course is quite easy to follow with no navigation issues. The tees and baskets are showing some wear, but are in fine shape.
Cons: The course is a perfect challenge for intermediate and rec level players, but doesn't offer and really interesting challenges. There are lots of nice straightforward par three holes with enough variety to keep it interesting, but it lacks some of the 'toughness' of other area courses. There are some areas of the course where the brush is encroaching on the fairways, a little clearing and cleaning would make the course feel a lot more taken care of. There are a few holes right near roads, a little bit of a safety issue and it takes away from the peaceful feeling of the wooded areas.
Other Thoughts: I enjoyed this course, it makes a really nice break from some of the tough courses around the area. It's a nice beginner course, if a little long on the back side, and intermediate players will find themselves challenged to hit lines. Better players won't find much challenge here, but will still find some fun holes and some good holes to practice shaping shorter lines through the woods.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Short but Tricky
Pros: Although none of the holes are very long, every one of them has some twist to it. You will have to throw around trees, bushes, and mandos on almost every hole. In order to play near par, you need to shape your shots carefully. The front 9 is mostly narrow and wooded. The back 9 has more open (but still tricky) holes.
Cons: The neighborhood is pretty rough. I would not advise anyone (especially female players) to play here alone near dusk.
Other Thoughts: This course hosts well organized handicap tournaments (Thursdays in the summer and Sunday mornings in the winter). It can be frustrating at first, but gets easier after you play it a couple of times.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: I liked the open portions and the wooded sections were very frustrating, but it was an even mix and I think with a little more play time on this course it has a lot to offer.
Cons: neighborhood kinda scary and there are mandos( which i disagree with but follow nontheless)
0 of 6 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 11 Not
Pros: very challenging and many trees bloking the pins. I personaly loved it for this reason but had some cons to
Cons: very boring at parts and also frustrating if you hit the trees. It was frustrating with the fact that you had all these tunnel shots that where nearly imposible to get through to. also very messy and not well maintained
1 of 12 people found this review helpful.
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