Solid, quiet alternative...
Pros: Short-ish 18 hole course located on the north side of the Twin Cities.
Concrete teepads, all in were pretty solid repair. Possibly could have been a bit longer, but they served the purpose here. A few holes had multiple tees.
DGA baskets, all in good repair, and caught like you'd expect. One pin position per hole. There was some nice tucked baskets in various spots on the course.
Ham Lake has a decent array of distances, with nothing being too long. This is a par 3 course, for sure, but it's laid out well and has good flow. Tee signs at each hole, and navigation was pretty easy.
There's a lot to like here, especially if you think of it as a warmup for the big boys (BRP and VQ) up the road. It's not an overly tough course, but it has enough different shots to keep it interesting.
Nice use of the available terrain, with some small rolling hills, and plenty of trees and rough.
Cons: One pin position wasn't awesome, but there's not a ton of extra space here for other expansion.
No water to speak of. Not a big deal in my book, especially for what this course is.
There's really nothing here in the way of 500' bomber type holes, if that's your thing.
Other Thoughts: There's not much to dislike about this course, if you treat it for what it is, which is a short-ish, technical round. Plenty of fun factor, some tricky shots and approaches, and well thought out design.
There are far worse ways to spend an hour than to play a round here. I'd imagine it doesn't get a ton of traffic, being so close to more popular courses, and there's other things on site for the family to do if need be. Definitely worth a spin.
Hidden Gem of a Course!
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This is a well designed course. It is a shorter course, but you will need to make every type of shot on it if you want to do well. The course does not take a lot of time to play, partly because the next tee box is easy to find and close to the previous hole. Play it with only a Teebird and a Buzzz. My buddy and I were the only people on the course.
Cons: There are some poison ivy patches both under some of the trees and along the tree lines in the taller grass.
Other Thoughts: I enjoyed playing this course a lot more than I expected that I would. I usually play Blue Ribbon, but I will play the Ham Lake course again soon. I highly recommend giving it a try!
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Fun little coursea
- Lots of parking
- Decent mix of open/wooded holes
- Susceptible to wet weather, lots of boggy and muddy areas. Easy enough to get your disc back if you can walk through a few inches of water
- Holes seem crowded at times. 1 & 18 throw more or less at each other, and other goals are a bit too close to the next tee.
- Signs indicating distance/path to goal seem wrong
Other Thoughts: This was my first time playing the course, so be sure to go and form your own opinions.
While playing I got a bit of 'history' of the course, which I won't recite here. But keep in mind that as of May 2015 the course IS 18 holes. If you see someone littering, stealing, or vandalizing please say something or call the police, don't let one fool ruin it for everyone.
Pros: - A close 9 hole course with challenging shots
- Good mix of open holes and a few wooded
- Minimal foot traffic depending on time of day and if the park is occupied by a baseball or softball team
- Fairways are cut nice, rough and fairway edges get long and never get cut, miss the fairway and lose sight of the disc can turn it into a pain to locate
Cons: - Lost the back 9 due to vandalism
- Can get wet and stay wet for a long time
- If you go at the wrong time of day there can be loads of people and usually all are beginners so it takes time, which is annoying at a 9 hole course
- A few wooded holes get muddy and a real pain with low hanging branches
- Not the best maintained course, trash and high grass sucks
Other Thoughts: Nothing really else to be added, except for maybe the back 9? Rumor has it though they could open them back up, according to a local shop, which would be great this course would be a 3.5-4.0 course with the back 9 they were so fun and challenging. I hope to see some maintenance done to this course, the city should take care of it more, since they do play baseball nightly here.
18 hole history
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Quick to play with easy access and some long/short tees giving a good mix of shots as well as distances. Holes range from open to tightly wooded and a good challenge for all skill levels.
**edit** In 2015 city put in the back 9 again with a few minor changes most notable being hole 17 shortened.. Course plays similar to the original layout with some slight "improvements" but really nothing special just some solid free DG.
City removed back 9 due to people defacing the property as well as it often becoming flooded and very tore up. Last 3 holes are also impacted by flooding with tons of bugs in the summer and lacks any solid amenities but a few signs, garbage cans and picnic tables are there -- sort of.. Tee areas are tight and could use some cleaning up of brush/trees in spots as well as deteriorating in spots due to lacking maintenance.
Other Thoughts: A good warm-up for BRP or quick 9 holes which is step above your typical pitch & putt style course. It has always felt like the city vs DG idiots here. Odd things like chains being taken off baskets and stupid trash etc were problems in years past resulting in the back 9 being removed and front 9 somewhat neglected. Life has been brought back to an old favorite and lets hope a few stupid folks don't ruin it for everyone. Have a feeling the course will disappear all together if history repeats itself here.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Free alternative to brp
Pros: Good long and short holes. Concrete teeboxes, holes have alternate shorter teeboxes too. Some teeboxes are in wooded areas requiring a solid straight drive out of the teebox, and if your not accurate you wont make it more than 30 ft past the teebox (can result in funny penalties made up by your friends and makes the driving accuracy challenging). Good use of different types of shots needed like hyzer and annys. A few long holes to really bomb it out there. Also some easy holes for two's. Free and good warm up for brp. Could either start at front nine or back nine depending on your preference.
Cons: Bugs can get bad at certain times of year. Sometimes swamp water builds up and parts of the course will be flooded. Few holes are easy to lose a disc. Back 9 seemed like some filler holes as the woods got super thick and swamp like and couldn't play half the time due to water flooding.
Other Thoughts: Last time I played here it was 18 holes. I heard that since then they took out the back nine because of vandalism. The back nine werent that great anyways. The front nine was way better.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
No back 9 );
Pros: 1. This is a great course for beginners and advanced players.
2. Decent tees on every hole and sometimes 2 tees per hole for beginners.
3. Not as many bugs as many other courses
4. Great terrain. Hole #5 has downhill and up hill which is exciting. On hole #7 there is a huge dirt pile in the way of the course that acts like a obstacle but still possible to do great on.
5. Hole #9 has a pond to the right of it so you have to be careful. Most of the time (all of the times I have gone there) there is no water but I am sure that at times it can get high in certain areas. But it makes it more interesting.
6. Asphalt tee box was great
7. One of my favorite simply because everyone of all skill level can have a fun time here.
Cons: 1. First of all I wrote this review because no one has mentioned that there is no back 9. They have taken it out because of vandalism.
2. I do see some broken glass and beer bottles in the woods which is probably part of the reason the back 9 was taken out.
3. People have wrote on the signs and one of the signs by the old back 9 #10 says "The back 9 has been taken out due vandalism". Someone wrote "Gay!!" over it and I couldn't help but to chuckle.
4. Just went back 9-3-12 and The tee on 9 has fallen. It is still there but almost impossible to put back in the ground upright. I could not do anything about it but I hope some one will
Other Thoughts: I have heard from others that they are not going to put the back 9 up due to the vandalism. Some guy said that they will be making more baseball fields there instead which is a real bummer. Although I have recently gone to a nearby store called disc life and they said that they are having a meeting with the city and hopefully take ownership of the course. This means that they will be charging $3 a day (Which isn't bad),possibly mowing the grassy areas and wait for... wait for it... BACK 9 WILL GO IN! But only if the city lets them. Also I heard concession stands which will be great! (:
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Fun course / Hidden Gem in city!
Pros: Excellent and intuitive layout, some long holes and some technical holes. A hidden gem among courses throughout the metro area. A good balance of distance and challenging holes as well.
Cons: There is a few holes that have potential of being swampy and wet after a rain or especially during rainy seasons.
Other Thoughts: My best score on 18 holes to date!
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Fun, Quick 18
Pros: 1) Good flow to course
2) Plays very quickly, with almost no time spent looking for lost discs.
3) With the exception of #16 (See Cons) the entire course was very well maintained, free of undergrowth, only 1 downed tree(which actually made the hole better)
4) Front 9 ends at the parking lot, so it's easy to play a quick 9 if that's all you have time for.
5) Fairways are Unique. I don't think i threw the same throw twice. hole 13 is a sharp, short right angle and the elevation changes added an odd wind current.
Cons: 1) Holes 9, 10, and 16 were very muddy.
2) Hole 16 must be some sort of joke, the fairway is just a giant mess of downed trees, saplings, hanging branches and mud. Nicknamed "The Devil's Vagina", I believe that name to be much too generous.
Other Thoughts: Except for 16, this was a very fun course, challenging holes interspersed with some easy dueces
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Water water everywhere. And not a sign in sight!
Pros: The course is a great challenge for new players like myself. The fact that each hole has a track description with distance info is huge, because alot of the holes are obscured from the tee box. I liked the concrete pads with garbage cans and some benches. The fact that they added the back 9 not long ago bodes well for this course in the future. The baskets and tee boxes where in great shape.
Cons: I like the "wild" courses as much as the next guy, but if you are going to carve the course out of the forest and place the tee boxes a considerable distance from the last hole you need to let a player know where the next tee is. If you are not lucky you will spend some time wandering from the basket trying to find your next tee. Holes 9 thru 18 are wrapped around a swamp and if there has been any rain recent precipitation, they will be wet...Hole 9,10,11 and 15,16,17 were completely submerged. 15 is ridiculous, the tee box is separated from the basket by 100' of knee deep water with no markings as to how to get around the swamp.
Other Thoughts: I actually liked the course even though the review might not look like it. I will try again in the future, perhaps during a dryer season...maybe winter :)
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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