The Hardest 9 Hole Course in the World?
Pros: The course is exceptionally challenging, there is great elevation change, a lot of well spaced mature trees (including a willow tree) and the park is quite beautiful.
The 1st hole is an incredibly easy deuce and the 2nd hole is a beautifully designed hole that makes you earn a tough par. The 3rd hole is a really nice hole that can yield a deuce, but can also leave you on the side of a difficult slope either approaching or putting for deuce. The 4th hole is another nicely designed hole that rewards great shots with deuce, good shots with par, and mediocre shots with 4 (or worse). The 5th hole is perhaps the most challenging hole under 200' that I've ever played (the few birdies I've had felt amazing, and it's a lefty hyzer that plays to my strengths, the guarded green making it incredibly difficult).
It all goes downhill (and uphill) from there.
Cons: It's an incredibly long, backtracking (over the fairway you just played) walk to get from the 2nd to the 3rd tee.
The 6th hole is nightmarishly long, extremely uphill, and sloping through a very wooded aspect of the park. I've played the course well over 10 times and had a single 3 on that hole. Listed at 375 and plays like 550. This is not what you want for a city park that should be for beginners (great guarded green though).
The 7th is a pretty cool slightly downhill hole that is listed at 417, but it still plays every bit like 350. It's again not the type of hole that is conducive to a short city park.
The 8th hole is a 375 foot hole that drops immediately off a plateau and gives you no advantage of an elevated tee. The main reason is that there are enormous mature trees blocking any sort of reasonable path to the fairway (there is no lefty route, and the single time I got close was a lucky accidental roller).
The 9th hole is a reachable distance, but the uphill slope makes this 299 play more like 360 and it's just not much fun.
So, I would rate the first 5 holes 3.0 and the last 4 holes 1.0, which gives my cumulative rating at just over 2.0, but I'm docking it a full point for lacking flow and other design elements AND the fact that it could be a great 18 hole course and not a punishment.
Other Thoughts: There is an enormous amount of land in this area for a city park. Hole #2 is the only one on the right side, the only one that utilizes the water that runs through, and there would be room there for many holes.
A redesign is in order. Hole 5 should be the starting hole, as it is the most visible from the street where many park (most don't park in the lot in the park, which is far from the #1 tee). Hole 6 should be dramatically shortened and angled way to the right (there isn't that much technical shot making, and it would be a great 240 foot hole that plays like 320 and is now #2). Utilizing the original protected green for #6, we would then create a new #3 by putting a tee to the right and behind our new #2 pin. #7 would be turned into two holes then and would be #4 and #5. #8 would be turned into two holes as well, the first pin being short and to the far left, and then have a short open tee to the original green (now #s 6 and 7). #9 remains the same and is now #8.
Then we get really creative with our redesign. Play hole #3 backwards and call it #9. Hole #4 remains the same and we call it hole #10. Hole #1 is played backward and is now #11. The biggest advantage to this part of the redesign is that the overall design of the course flows better, it's obvious where to go next, and there are no long confusing walks between holes (as from 2 to 3 and 5 to 6 are currently). It actually plays like a track now.
Hole #2 remains the same and is now the finishing hole #12 IF we want to stop there (and this is absolutely the risk/reward type of finishing hole that you'd want).
The truth is, however, that there is plenty of room on that side of the road AND a very nice wide creek to work with that has bridges and other obstacles that could be worked into the design. We might not have to stop at 12 and could easily create 6 holes that finish with an 18th that has a basket on the shore by the bridge (which brings us back to the start).
1 Helpful / 13 Not
A disappointment with so much potential.
Pros: Beautiful Park. Has potential for 18 holes.
Cons: Most of the holes have no good fairway, especially for the length. You can't have a 380ft hole with a 10ft. tunnel fairway(Hole 3). It's not fun. And disc golf is supposed to be challenging, but fun! The designer was a masochist and made most of the holes impossible and defeating. But what is really disappointing is the missed opportunity for this to be a fantastic course. There are great lanes for holes all over this park and the designer never took them into account.
Other Thoughts: I have played this course 10 times or so since it was created. Every time I am done with a round, I wonder why I decided to play it. They got tees, signs, and pins. they forgot the fairway...
1 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Great little park course
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Nice course in a scenic park full of mature trees and nice elevation. Don't be fooled by the fact that you can see almost all the baskets from the road...this isn't a pitch n' putt, for the most part.
For 9 holes, there's a LOT of elevation here. Several holes (4, 8, 9) play very uphill/downhill, and a couple of the other holes play at smaller grades. Nearly every hole has you weaving through large deciduous trees, but with several lines at most baskets.
Hole 2 plays over the river, with taller trees lining it...a fun little shot.
Hole 3 offers a big chance for a rolloaway down the right side.
Solid catching baskets, in good repair.
Hole distances provide a nice mix. Some short, some long.
Cons: Mostly rubber tee pads here, which can be slick when wet. They were level, for the most part, so they weren't the worst thing in the world.
It would be nice if hole 9 could end somewhere closer to hole 1. You'll need to either park in the middle on the street, or hoof it back to the car. This could also be used as an excuse to play some safari on the way back.
Holes 2 and 3 play somewhat close to the baseball diamond, so playing here during sporting events could prove difficult.
Other Thoughts: Parking on the street is advised, as hole 1 starts right next to the road, on the pathway leading towards the baseball diamond.
Don't mistake this for a pitch n putt...we didn't bother to look at distances beforehand, and decided (based on so many baskets visible from the road) to play this as a 2 disc challenge. While many of the holes are reachable with a putter/mid, several were not.
Overall, a super solid 9 hole course in a small town. We played Birds, hit this, then on to Rock River. There's also a whole corridor of 9 holers from here to Hartford, if you're so inclined.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Fantastic 9-hole Course!
Pros: + Beautiful park with many shot-shaping trees to navigate
+ Great use of the elevation and features within the park
+ Groundskeepers keep the course well manicured and in great shape
+ No two holes are alike
+ Rubber tee pads in decent shape and play fairly consistent (aside from hole 1, where a bike path doubles as a tee pad - not a bad thing)
+ Some surprisingly long and challenging holes for a 9-hole course. Deuces are not easy to come by
+ Well made and fairly descriptive tee signs
+ Although not disc golf related, there is an incredibly unique baseball stadium next to the course. Evidently they play on Sunday afternoons and Thursday evenings in the summer
Cons: - Walking/biking paths cross or are in play on many holes. WATCH FOR PEDESTRIANS!!
- Although somewhat unique, hole 2 seemed a bit awkward to me. The primary obstacle of the hole is first, the bridge and second the creek
- As other reviews have noted, the parking lot is nowhere close to hole 1 or at the end of hole 9. However, I would never trade a great course layout for convenient parking, so to me it is a non-issue
Other Thoughts: This course far exceeded my expectations. In my humble estimation, this course should have a much higher rating than it currently does.
The day prior to playing Firemen's Park I played Evansville DGC, which has a higher rating at the time of this review. Although a nice course, Evansville was not nearly as fun and challenging as Firemen's Park.
This course was a pleasant surprise for me, and was worth the trip.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Excellant Park course
Pros: Really pretty park course. Lots of large Oak trunks to negotiate but not . . . pin ballish. A thinking mans style course. Good balance between sidearm and back hand shots. Some long holes but not crazy long . . .just long for me I suppose. Not complaining.
Cons: WELL - it's almost like they design 9 holes and then blindly tossed the holes out like a cup of dice. MAKE SURE you look where the next tee is so you have a clue where to look.
Other Thoughts: First tee is on the cement path at the corner of the park.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Wish there was room for another 9...
Pros: Excellent use of land; park is very well kept and lots of shot variety...long, short, righty, lefty, uphill, downhill.
Quite a few holes over 350 feet, uncommon for a lot of 9 holers.
Rubber mats instead of natural tees.
Tee signs with distances and pretty solid pictures of hole layout.
Cons: I couldn't find a designated parking lot for the disc golf course and had to ask a baseball player where the course started. Hole 9's basket is about halfway across the park from hole 1's tee. I ended up parking on a residential street and walking to the hole 1 tee.
Not many garbage cans around given the many paths that work through the course.
Some of the holes seem to zig zag a bit, finding the next tee wasn't always obvious...luckily I ran into the guy who maintains the course and he told me about the walks that might confuse me.
Other Thoughts: Many people do not give 9 holers any love unless you live right next to one. This course plays just like a legit 18 hole course, but there are just 9 holes. Don't come here expecting 200 foot pitch and putt holes. Lots of holes that make you throw relatively long but also display accuracy. I'd love to see this park have enough space for another 9 holes.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Just okay 9 hole.
Pros: Its always nice to see a small town like this have a course. Older style disccatchers here, but they were in decent shape. Rubber mats on all tees except 1. They were in good shape when i went since it was dry, but these tend to get slick so be cautious. All par 3s, and some have some good distance and/or tight, tricky lanes to the pin. Theres a small creek along hole 2s fairway to keep you honest. Theres very good elevation changes for a nine hole. Very clean park and there did't seem to be much if any vandalism and the flow is pretty easy to figure out as long as you find hole 1. Very nice tee signs with hole #, basic hole layout and distance on every hole. I've played plenty worse 9's than this one.
Cons: Hole 1 is literally on the extreme southwest corner of the park which is a hike from the parking lot in the park. It'd be best to park on Park Ave. where you'll see the sign for hole 1. (look at the map location on the main page before you go, it'll save you time and a headache) Hole 9 ends nowhere near hole 1. Paths and roads wind thru course so you need to watch out where and when you throw. Kind of disjointed on the first 3 holes.
Other Thoughts: Worth a play if you are nearby (it is right between Bird's Ruins and Rock River) but not worth a trip just for this one. But i'd be happy to have this if I lived in Waterloo.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Long Awaited Change
Pros: The set up of all the holes was a little funky at start, but they really utilized how much space they had and it was a really fun course to play. Most the holes had certain lays to make you play to a forearm or backhand toss.
Cons: I would have liked to see some of the trees cut down because there are a lot and maybe some better markers on where the holes actually start. I got lost after hole 1 and couldn't find hole 2.
Other Thoughts: Also on hole 1 they had a tube to hold maps, but it was empty so that didn't help. -_-
I'm always playing Rock River DGC where you can lose you disc quite easily, so this was a nice change for once.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Check it Out
Pros: Nice use of elevation changes. An ace chance. The course is not heavily played, I have never seen anybody else there while playing. The Maunesha River runs alongs hole 2 making it a little tougher.
Cons: Road goes through the course and comes into play on a hole 4.
Other Thoughts: If your in the area definetly check it out. One of the best 9 hole courses I have played. Used to have dirt tee boxes but now has rubber tee pads. Hole 3 is a tough par but can be done.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 6 Not
Could be better
Pros: Hole 2
Cons: No direction or flow.
Horrible tee pads.
No set lines to basket on most holes.
Other Thoughts: This could be a nice course if they updated the tee pads and installed signs. There is also a need for some trimming.
0 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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