Tight Clean Lines
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Squirrel Lake is an interesting little 12-hole loop outside of Charlotte. It is tucked in the middle of a small nature park. The course itself has one major theme - tight lines!
Almost every hole requires a very precise drive through a tight, but usually fairly defined path. Hitting the lines yields birdie, but as I often found, missing the line can be punishing. The punishment is fair, brush is extraordinary well trimmed in most spots, and disc loss risk is minimal. The trees off the fairway, though, are often thick enough themselves to require punch outs.
This course has a lot of the little things - long concrete tees, nice hole signs (though unfortunately some have been vandalized), and ample navigational signs which help the golfer get from hole to hole. Baskets are in very good shape.
In my opinion, when I played Squirrel Lake I found that overall, for a <18 hole course, it tended to have superb maintenance and the fairways were very well kept.
Cons: A few small cons here:
There is a mando on the left of hole one that could stand to be a bit more clearly marked. I didn't notice it from the tee.
Hole 6 is slightly awkward. It shares a tee pad at 90 degrees to hole 4, but it plays right up the park entrance road. It forces shots a bit too close to cars for my liking. Otherwise the hole was a bit refreshing because it is out in the open for the first half.
That brings me to my main con for the course - even for a 12 hole loop the woods got a bit monotonous. It would have been nice to have 1 or 2 more open holes just for variety.
There is also an unsightly trash dump behind #8 tee which is a bit of an eyesore, but it appears to be off of the property of the course so not much the course can do about it.
Other Thoughts: For a <18 hole course, Squirrel Lake was pretty fun. Layout was probably average, the upkeep was great. I really had a lot of fun palying the course but was left wanting a bit more. In other areas of the country, this course would probably get more traffic. In the Charlotte area, however, it seems to get overlooked. Our group had the course to ourselves on a beautiful weekend day.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
The "Little" Monster
Pros: Since my first round at Squirrel Lake (a day after the concrete pads were poured) I have had a Love-Hate relationship with it. Don't let the fact that this course only has 12 holes fool you. It is a little beast of a course that manages to tear me apart consistently. (Note that the little is only in reference to the amount of holes.) However, I think the choice to make 12 technical and challenging holes was the correct choice. Nobody wants to play a course full of nothing but fillers. The course will humble you quickly if you miss your line. None of the distances are outrageous, but the fairways are all nice and tight. The rough isn't too hard to navigate, and you rarely bounce off too far into trouble. The course makes good use of the landscape to allow a decent amount of holes with noticable elevation change. Like I said, there are concrete Tees, and DISCatcher baskets. The tee signs are great! They not only list Par and distance, but distance to the turns. This helps when choosing the right disc.
The course is in a nice, little park that has been getting a slow makeover since the course was built. It is no longer a small playground next to a pond surrounded by a disc golf course. It has a real park feel with really nice permanent structures that can be used for picnicking. There are a few benches, but they are pretty spread out. And the park is really clean, very little litter. On hole 6 you can open up a bit, before slipping right back into the woods to end the hole. Hole 6, by the way, has a L shaped tee combining with 4's, which is a very unique way of utilizing space.
Cons: The road leading into the park is made of gravel, so inconsiderate people who drive way faster than they should in a park can create a large dust cloud right next to a few of the fairways on a dry, sunny day. This park is a great place for experienced players to really work on their technical game, but because of its location and size (12 Holes) I know a few people who have used it as a place to learn the basics, which I do not recommend doing in the slightest. Especially with Crooked Creek Crossing being just a few exits down I-485 now. There is apparently an Owl residing somewhere along Hole 11, but luckily there are signs making people aware that they should take care. Most of the brush has cleared up over the past few years, but some places can still be extremely rough. Hole 11 once again coming to mind. One of my biggest issues though, is that even though I have played this course a decent amount, I can still get confused about how to get from 6 to 7 if it has been a while. Though a sign could remedy this problem. I also can only remember 1 trash can along the course itself (at Hole 4 + 6 combined Tee.)
Other Thoughts: Once again, 12 Holes is the perfect number for this course. It allows the holes to be fun and challenging enough to warrant playing and replaying, but by the time I am done playing hole 12, I am pretty happy it is over. Even though I can still generally park my second shot, seeing your nicely thrown drive bounce off its line is always upsetting. This is one of the tightest courses I have played. It is definitely a good course to work on your technical game though. Even with the technical Scrapyard (at Idlewild) being just down the road. Squirrel Lake will really teach you to navigate trees well. Even hole 8, which is a straight line down and back up a hill has been made really tough by a single tree 15-20 feet in front of tee.
I am torn on my score for this. I'd love to give this a higher rating due to my relationship with it, and I would love to knock it a few points. (It surely has done that for me in the past.) But I think a few another trashcan somewhere along the back 6 would really help things out, as well as some more next tee signs.
Favorite Holes: 2, 6, 10, 12
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice little course
Pros: Nice concrete pads at each hole. Signs with distance at each hole also. Navigation is pretty simple. The only place where it's a little odd is using the dual pad for hole 4 and 6. There are bathrooms on site and some benches spread throughout the course and park.
This course is almost totally wooded and in many places it forces you to squeeze a disc through some tight gaps. I'd call it typical tight Carolina wooded golf.
Well balanced course that has a good mix of lefts and rights. Some elevation is used, and adds to the course in the right spots.
Cons: Signs are pretty basic, and do not show the fairway layout.
Only 12 holes.
A few of the holes are tight to the point of having almost no line. There are gaps, but these fairways have more of a scattered tree feel.
#8 has a tree about 20' in front of the pad. Dead center. Kind of strange.
Pretty much a technical wooded course. No real length or holes where a big arm could have some fun.
Other Thoughts: Overall this is a good little course. 12 holes is different, but I could see where with the limited space available the designer decided to make some decent holes that are 300-400' instead of forcing in more short filler holes. I really enjoyed several of these holes. #6 plays from the open field down into the woods, tightening as you get closer to the basket. #9 is a 290' tight downhill shot that was pretty cool. Straight ace run if you can squeeze it through then trees. #10 is also a decent downhill shot that curves right. Perfect FH or turnover line down the hill. Decent little hole.
This course was about 10 minutes from my hotel somI gave it a shot. I'm glad I did because it is a nice short course to squeeze in a putter round if you are short on time. I'd play it again.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Good use of land and a weird number of holes make this pretty cool. You can kill twenty-four holes here and have a great time. This course is way easier in the winter than summer considering the foliage. Tight and short is the way, use your midrange and park holes, or pay for your tree-son.
Might want to flip a couple of thumbers to take out some distance, it is cheap but it is effective.
Cons: This is a short course by six holes, or a longer nine hole course with an extra four. Either way you cut it,
she is unique. If it had a couple of par four/five it would rate a four for sure.
Other Thoughts: I would go back and play this, twice one day. But, I would rather hit up Idewild if I am over that way. Would be a good day to play both. I like the squirrel, it can be difficult and is a short hike in the woods.
This course will teach you how to throw straighter with slower discs.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Squirrel to the Face
Pros: -Short and Sweet, compact, it's possible to get around twice in about an hour.
-Repetitive look, but good shot variety, with some elevation, and tight, tight lines. All tightly wooded except for 1/2 of #6.
This course is great for 1) midrange practice. total accuracy, hitting lines from hand to basket at a premium. 2) for the beginner to intermediate player, a good intro to what you'll need to be able to do with your game when you play some of the larger-scope, advanced-level courses in the area (Nevin, etc.)
Cons: Don't be fooled, this isn't really a rec-level course. There are some of the tightest lines in the county on this course. If you show up thinking about a nice, fun, casual round, you might wind up feeling a palpable sense of betrayal from this course. Luckily, most of the rough is relatively thinned out from all the traffic in there, so finding errant shots isn't too horrible in most places. (missing to the left on #11 is about the worst spot I've seen.)
Tee shot on # 4. it just won't make sense to my eye, and I can't find a shot that'll work for me, other than getting lucky on the local skinny route.
Other Thoughts: This course is sort of a "tweener," not really a beginner-friendly P & P, not quite a full-on course. May not be room for another 6 holes, but maybe. 6 more brutally tight holes here would make this a great course for midrange-in-the-woods practice, as well as improving mental-game discipline.
Combining this course with the 9-holer at Mint Hill Park, right up 485, is a good mix of golf action for a day, if you're "tired" of the same old dozen courses around town. LOL
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 2 Not
Drier than it sounds
Pros: A rough around the edges type of 12-holer, this course is predominately wooded. It flows pretty well with some informative signs and paths and has really nice, level concrete tees. Tee signs available at every hole and are aesthetically more pleasing than your typical, 'half-assed drawing of the fairway, taped to a pole'-type of sign.
Playability: Left-to-Right variety is very well done as is the distance so no two holes feel repetitive. A few holes, #1 specifically, require thought about disc placement rather your typical, "spray and pray," holes. Benches and seats are available on most of the holes. Tough but fair is very apt here.
Elevation: Slightly better than average.
Cons: Roughly half of the fairways need some foot traffic and defining done a bit, because occasionally you kind of scratch your head a little on the tee wondering where exactly the fairway is. No water holes, which is kind of a let down since it's Squirrel Lake and all. Would really appreciate a picture of the hole shape on the tee signs as it is not visually apparent right now from the tee.
Not necessarily a con, but I couldn't help but chuckle since every tee sign, which consists of engraved wooden pieces, have one piece that reads, "Squirrel Lake" on them, as if we would forget what course/park we were at or something.
Other Thoughts: Favorite Hole: #6. I'm a sucker for holes that play into/out of woods and this one delivers, tee off in the open and try to hit a gap to the left into the woods with a hyzer if you're RHBH.
Feels Like: Southern Community except with better flair/little things like tees, etc. This is probably what Wellspring in Burlington looked like when it first opened up.
10 of 12 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
A More Technical Version Of Reedy Creek!
Pros: Great terrain for a course. Lots of elevation to play up and down. Great natural beauty. Accuracy is key to playing this course. If you get off the fairways, you can get into some trouble. Luckily, the underbrush is not so thick so losing discs doesn't seem likely. There are simple signs which give the par and distance. A map type sign would be helpful because of the amount of trees. The pads are a little small for my liking. Easily my favorite hole was # 9. It's a downhill S curve and like almost every hole on this course could be birdied with a great throw or just as easily, you could end up with a bogie or double-bogie if you're not accurate with your drive. But really, that describes most holes on this course.
Cons: This is not a beginner course. It would frustrate the new player and certainly can (and did) frustrate someone who been playing for 31 years. It's tight as can be. At this time, the park only has a sani-can. It's a very one-dimensional type (wooded technical) course now. I'm kind of nervous about # 6 throwing down the park road into oncoming traffic. Be careful here.
Other Thoughts: Like Reedy Creek, it's just a real pretty walk in the park. Maybe over time, it'll get cleared out a bit and won't be so tight. As others have mentioned, the L shaped teepad for #''s 4 and 6 is pretty clever and different. Hopefully, they'll find a place for six more holes in the future.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Squirrel Lake Park
Pros: Located in a wildlife habitat park this course offers a variety of right turning, left turning and straight holes. All but #6 are in the woods and #6 has woods on the left before turning left into the woods. Elevation changes abound. Signs at all tee pads with the #4 and #6 sharing an L-shaped pad. Distances are listed on the signs. Very technical with a premium on accuracy, this course was designed to minimize the impact on the wildlife habitat.
Cons: Even though the park offers a playground, fishing lake, and picnic pavilion, the only rest room is a Porta-John. Course maps are not available and the tee pad signs don't offer hole diagrams. Sometimes, there is a map posted next to the first tee but it is usually missing. Since this is a wildlife habitat, there are no trash cans in the woods. There is a trash can and bench at the #4,6 tee pad.
Other Thoughts: There are approved plans to expand this course to 18 holes after the park finishes expansion of the greenway. Also, permanent toilets are planned. If you use Google Maps for directions, the park entrance is NOT Privette Rd. It is about 500' south of Privette Rd. and there is a sign directing you into Squirrel Lake Park. Course maps are available on-line at the Charlotte Disc Golf Club website. Since this is a new course, this review will be updated as improvements are made.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Not crowded at all. I don't know if it's that people don't know about this course - or park - but it hardly ever has much traffic.
- Very tightly-packed course. You never get too far away from the main road/parking area. I always consider that a plus because if the course ever DID get crowded, it's easy to skip holes or start off on a different hole. For instance, if there's a wait at #1, you could always walk to #4/#6 and start there. Or, you could play 11 and 12, or 10-12, etc.
- The wooded holes are tight and challenge you to keep it in the fairway on most drives. It's a very punishing course if you get deep into the woods.
- Yellow baskets are a major plus on a wooded course like this. I can think of a number of wooded courses where it was tough to pick out the basket among all the trees.
- I saw a family of deer running through the course on one occasion. The official name of this park is "Squirrel Lake Wildlife Habitat," and it definitely stays true to its name.
Cons: - Most tees are easy to find, but two in particular are a bit confusing:
1) When you finish #6, you are actually right near the tees for #9 and #10. You have to walk backward a bit to get to #7. There are signs that point you backward to the next tee, but they could conceivably be pointing you to #9 as well.
2) When you finish #9, you have to walk back up that fairway to find the tee for #10. There is no tee anywhere near the basket for #9, so without knowing what to do there, you could walk around aimlessly for a good while and not find anything.
- Some tee pads don't give you much room to maneuver. They are a bit too short for taller players that need more room.
- On a few occasions, mosquitoes and gnats have been an issue. They were particularly bothersome around the tee pads, for some reason.
- A few holes - 9-11 in particular - come up close to the edge of the park near the housing development behind it. With the trees around the basket, you shouldn't have a problem sailing a disc into someone's yard, but it takes away from the secluded feel of the park a bit to see the houses back there.
Other Thoughts: -12 holes is an odd number for a course, and I'm still not sure how I feel about it. On one hand, it feels a little incomplete; but, on the other hand, it's nice to have something a bit longer than 9 but not quite a full 18. Ultimately, I think I appreciate that the designers realized that 12 holes was the best fit for this park.
- One small quirk: #4 and #6 share the same tee pad at a 90° angle.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
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