Mighty fine foothill flingin'
Pros: -Really loved the elevation changes here and the use of the rocks and trees in the landscape.
-Very nice variety of shots with some alternate lines available.
-Challenging, but not overly so for newer players. More OB and mandos could readily be added for tournaments.
-Who can resist memorable ridge top and downhill throws?
-Beautiful setting, even in a drought year with the lake quite low.
-Played the course in the late fall and the conditions were great - nice temps, low grass/weeds. I can imagine in the dead of summer it would be a completely different experience, but that's nature for ya.
-Liked that many of the baskets were permanently embedded in granite blocks/boulders. This made many of these baskets easier to spot from a distance. Nice touch.
-Camping on the other side of the lake (though oddly not noted in the info for the course).
Cons: Because this is a remote course, and I personally like the rawness and unmanicured nature of disc golf in general as opposed to ball golf courses, it's hard to be too nit picky and critical of this sweet course.
-Better durable tees, instead of sand. Didn't bother me much and I see hard surfaces as more of a necessity in well travelled/urban courses.
-Alt pin or tee locations would be a bonus to add versatility. But again, being less visited and remote, this really seems like a luxury here.
-Higher quality permanent signs. They appear in pics to have been better at one time (vandals?), but were laminated paper when I visited. Some posts were down on the ground. Also, didn't like that the distances on the signs were in yards while the map was in feet.
-"Next tee" signs would be helpful in a few places, though much of the course has good logical flow.
Other Thoughts: I would play this course again in a heartbeat when traveling thru the area. Locals (who are likely few and far between) are lucky to have this place to play, and if it weren't so remote (which is most definitely part of it's charm), I imagine tournaments would utilize this course regularly.
18 Hole Gem in the rough
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: 18 holes on some of the most picturesque landscape in the foothills. Beautiful views of Lake Hensley and the Sierras up into Yosemite National Forest. Holes are well thought out with huge elevation changes and very nicely crafted shot selection. Uses rock outcropings and trees to create added difficulty. Would make a very nice tournament level course. Awesome top of the world type shot on hole 6.
Cons: TEE PADS, TEE PADS, TEE PADS, These are some of the most F-d up teepads I've ever seen. Deep, deep ruts that render them pretty much useless. DG tees that look like cat litter boxes well torn up. On a lot of holes I ended up throwing off to the side rather than try to break my neck. Tee signs are present but sometimes confusing but you will get the gist. Very tall grass present everytime I've played making for some disc hunting. No water. Drinking fountain on hole 6 wasn't running. And the usual other CA wilderness cons, heat, snakes, mountain lions, and the such.
Other Thoughts: This course could be a four star plus course in par with Black Butte Lake or New Hogan in feel and play if it weren't for a few things holding it back. The teepads are by far the definite drain on the course, and a little effort there would go a long way toward bringing this course higher. A little more maintenance on the fairways tall grass would bring it close to perfection. I think I am the first to review the course since the new 9 was added, previous reviews I believe are based on the original 9. The new 9 plays and feels very similar to the original. The original 6 holes play the same as before with number 7 being a new hole playing off in a new direction.
Fun Fact: On the top of hole 6 there was a ten foot granite marker which I believed to be a memorial of some kind it turned out to be a grave for Major James Savage the Euro-American discoverer of Yosemite Valley. It is planted at the top of the hill with a magnificent view up the lake and river valley into Yosemite. But does anyone else feel a little weird teeing off from someone's grave.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Scenic Course In The Sierra Nevada Foothills!
Pros: Great terrain for a course with rolling hills, deep valleys, the ever present waters of Lake Hensley and the Sierra Nevada mountains in near distance make this one of the more eye pleasing courses you're going to play. The baskets and signs are new and top notch. The pads not so much. The course would be easier to follow with a few directional or next tee signs. It's long enough to be challenging. The wind was howling on the day I played added to the difficulty. # 6 is 708' straight downhill with a natural fairway, glorious views from the top and benches to sit a spell and take in your surroundings. Do take some time here. The surrounding vista is absolutely breathtakingly beautiful with the blue waters of the lake on two sides of you and the mountains past that.
# 4 is another gem of a hole. It's 338' over two small valleys to a peek-a-boo basket behind a rock outcropping and the hole plays on a fairly steep side of the hill.
Cons: The teepads are a little on the small side and need some serious rake work. They're currently in pretty rough shape with plenty of ruts and grooves.
The tee signs are informative but they don't always face the right direction. I expect the signs to help me spot or locate the baskets. These signs often faced in another direction thus slowing me down.
Other Thoughts: I doubt you'll ever have to wait for other players on this course. I doubt you'll ever see another player way out here. It's pretty lonely. Bring water on warm days. There were some buzzards circling overhead. Maybe they knew something!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Amazing views throughout the course especially in between Hole 6 and 7
-Course is easy to navigate
-Very nice tee signs
-Good variety on holes with elevation changes
Cons: -If you go during the Spring or Summer months there can be a lot of snakes on the course so be careful
-Could use more benches especially due to the hilly nature of the course
-Water fountain located between Hole 6 and 7 barely worked. Be sure and bring water you will need it on this course
-Natural tee pads have holes and are uneven. Be careful its easy to lose your footing and slip.
-Discs can be hard to find due to long fairly thick grass throughout the course. Try to keep an eye on where your discs are landing
Other Thoughts: Parking is a little confusing for a first timer. Be sure and stop at the top of the hill and fill out a self parking deposit envelope with $4. Be sure and place the detachable portion on your dash to avoid a citation.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - 9 permanent holes
- tee signs are there
- elevation changes
- amazing views
- 9 temp placements are sweet
Cons: - hot weather brings snakes
- lots of hiking
Other Thoughts: Great course with the tourney we had. it was permanent 9 and a temp. 9. Fun course great views and some long holes. i miss my apache thats in the abyss of lake hensley but otherwise nice course as is better as an 18 hole.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Great use of elevation changes. Uphill, downhill, across valleys, etc.
-Stunning views of the lake from the course.
-Nice tee signs
-Variety of shots required to reach baskets from the tee pads
-Good Flow. Covers alot of ground but circles back to hole 1 nicely.
Cons: -The natural tees are nice but vary in size and some have some uneven spots.
-Could use some trash cans and benches
-Tee signs are in odd spots in relation to the tee pads. (I actually threw the wrong way from tee 2)
Other Thoughts: An expansive 9 hole course that offers some stunning views of the lake from the course. Great use of elevation here with the signature hole being a 708ft downhill on #6. Wearing pants or gaiters would be highly recommended as the foxtails and other plants can be vicious (and very annoying).
Some directional signing to point out where the disc golf course is would be very helpful. The relatively close course at Eastman lake has that as well as a really nice info board, so why not?
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course is set in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains, so there is a ton of elevation available for the course. There are beautiful old oak trees scattered throughout the course, and a few holes play through denser stands of them. Throughout the course there are great views of Hensley Lake and of the Sierras, making for a very scenic round.
The course uses the space well, playing up/down/across big hills, and using the scattered trees pretty well as obstacles. There were a few holes that required something other than a RHBH hyzer shot, so that kept the round a little more interesting. When I played, the fairways had been mowed recently, so as long as you stayed on the fairways there wasn't any issue with underbrush.
The tees were decent size gravel pads, and were in good shape for the most part. There were nice hole signs at each tee that gave distance and pin location. Once on the course, it was easy to follow, and had a natural flow without any crossing fairways or places where holes played on top of one another.
The natural beauty and solitude on this course made it one of the most peaceful places I've ever played disc golf. It is off the beaten path, so you won't run into too many other players out here, though the one player who was arriving as we were leaving was very friendly.
Cons: When we got to the parking lot, we had to search for a nontrivial amount of time to find the first tee. A sign in the parking lot with a course map would go a long way here. The gravel pads were mostly fine, but there were a couple that were very uneven and made for treacherous footing.
Though the fairways were mowed, they still had a ton of plants with small stickers that love to get down into your shoes and socks. If you end up in the rough, it's even worse, so plan to spend the next day finding bits of the plants in all your shoes and clothing. The rough also made a great place for snakes to hang out, so watch your step (we saw three during our round).
Other Thoughts: If you are in the area, definitely stop by and play this course. The elevation changes and the views make this course unique and fun. The local we talked to said that there are plans to expand the course to 18, and if they design the back 9 as well as the existing 9, this will be an excellent course.
The course is at a higher altitude, and has very little protection from the sun on many of the open fairways. Bring sunscreen and lots of water if you're playing in the summer or fall. I would recommend sturdy walking shoes, as the footing is not always the best.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 2 Not
Awesome new course!
Pros: Mixture of holes that will challenge the best. Beautiful scenic course with views of Hensley Lake and Yosemite. Concrete tees with new signs. 707' monster of a hole that is downhill. Great change in elevation.
Cons: Can be confusing when starting the course. Hole 2 is to the left. High grass can make it difficult to find badly thrown discs.
Other Thoughts: This course is an amazing course. It was just built in 2008 so everything is brand new. I wanted to find a scenic course when I came to California, and this did it for me. The course combines hills that create challenging shots, but also beautiful views of central California. If you're on your way up to Yosemite this is a must on the list.
6 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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