Kansas City, MO 
Kessler Park (Cliff Drive) Share
Uploaded By: scarpfish Hole #1 (Taken 9/2009)
3 / 432ft. Par / Distance:
Hole #1 Tee: Through tunnel and then right



Reviews: 26
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Winter Wonderland

1    12/15/2014   12/15/2014
Review By: jasonrigler
Played: 47  Reviewed: 11  Exp: 2.1 Years
Pros: Front 9. Character. Views. Brilliant in the winter. Challenging.
Cons: The unusual traffic in the park can be unnerving. It a shame people dump trash on the course. Maybe not the best course to take a very casual player.
Other Thoughts: I really enjoyed this course. The layout I played was full of sharp rights on the front. I have a decent sidearm and a great turnover but these angles really made me think through laying up or placing shots or being creative. I played on a lovely day in December . I can only imagine how tight the lines are in Spring/summer. You can't just walk up to this course and chuck it, it will engage your brain. I liked the control required on the front 9 and the distance needed on the back 9. The back 9 is open but with lot's of risk reward with basket placement and the wind can be a factor. I struggled a little on the front because I played the angles aggressively. I had a few OB on the back 9 for the same reason. I am rhbh and drive 370. I think i shot +1. I could have been more conservative and scored better but I really wanted to take on the challenges this course has to offer.

That reservoir looks hungry for discs!

1    8/30/2014   9/2/2014
Review By: jjw4ucm
Played: 30  Reviewed: 28  Exp: 1.5 Years
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Great course layout! Although the back 9 can get slightly repetitive, I was happy to have a break after playing the heavily wooded, hilly front 9. I don't think it got overly repetitive or boring at all.

First 9 have lots of fun technical shots. The elevation changes here are crazy and lots of fun to play around.

Gorgeous view of downtown KC from the park. This is a very pretty park, and it's also quite large.

Baskets all in place and in good condition. Multiple pin positions abound.

Concrete tees are in good shape, and the "wedge" angle tells you where you're throwing, which isn't always apparent (more on that to follow).

The hills in this park are used perfectly and there is a great amount of variety in shots here, especially in the front 9.

Not overly crowded, and not a lot of non-DGers out either.
Cons: Course was not maintained well at all when we played in late August. Trash and broken glass everywhere. Knee-high grass abounded, which meant there really weren't fairways per se on most of the back 9. It's bad when the tee pads are basically just slabs of concrete surrounded by tall grass.

Signage was nice when present (and it did tell you where to look for the next tee), but unfortunately many of them have been stolen or were otherwise not present. There are a few areas where navigation is not intuitive. Take a picture of the map with your phone, it's a life-saver.

Not to beat a dead horse, and I didn't really dock my rating for this, but this neighborhood around this course is bad. Probably marginally better than Swope, but I would NOT play here anywhere close to dark.

While I don't find the back 9 objectionable, I do believe they leave a slight something to be desired after seeing what the front 9 was. I don't really see any way they could have blended it any better and it wasn't a huge deal, but I see the point here.

Lots of OB roads throughout, and the road thru the park does get some use so you have to be semi-careful.
Other Thoughts: This course is in Old Northeast, fairly close to the Kansas City Museum. I got here by taking Independence Avenue (24 Highway) east from downtown, then turning left on Wabash and going the whole way into the park.

This is a great course, in my opinion. The front 9 were incredible and very memorable. The back 9 were average -- not horrible or boring, but just nothing I would drive this far into a very questionable part of town to play.

However, all things told, this course was well worth the play. Just keep your head on a swivel and enjoy the round. I wrestled between a 3.5 and a 4 on this course. At the end of the day, for the uniqueness of the experience, I think it's definitely worth a play.

However, I do have to dock a little bit for the ambience. Trash can absolutely be picked up and signage replaced, but when you can't even find 11's tee pad for 10 minutes because of the knee-high grass and there's a shady-looking dude in an Escalade just chilling with his car running right by the basket for 10...well, yeah, it DOES take something away from the game. I say this as a suburbanite -- many of you might not feel that way. But, if you're a fellow suburbanite, you know what to expect.

Again, I think this course is awesome, it was a blast, and absolutely worth the drive in from very suburban Lee's Summit. Give it a go! I would love to play here again and re-review if the grass has been mowed and trash somewhat picked up.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

A tale of two courses.

1    7/17/2014   7/17/2014
Review By: chaddyboy_2000
Played: 21  Reviewed: 7  Exp: 13.6 Years
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: The front nine! Very interesting shots through wooded areas with a fair amount of elevation change. Nice and interesting pin placements that make for challenging shots that require a good amount of precision.

Just an excellent set of 9 holes well laid out in some great terrain.
Cons: The back nine! Pretty much wide open, except for some out of bounds areas that are more frustrating than fun. One shot goes right along a road, where if people are parked on the side of it are right in your flight path. You have to play it safe just so you don't hit someone's car. Another couple holes follow a fence line where if you are inaccurate, you're not going to retrieve the disc as there's a 6' fence with a 20' drop on the other side of it into what looks to be some sort of abandoned water detention area.

The back nine also is just plain uninteresting, consisting of nearly all pretty wide open long shots, most of which are flat. There are some cool giant trees, but that's about the only high point.

The course also suffers from vandalism/neglect, as there is garbage everywhere, and many of the tee signs are either missing or laying on the ground. It's a bit tough to find your way to the next tee some times (we never did find the tee to 11, and just played it from the 10 pin).
Other Thoughts: My rating is mostly about the fun of playing the course rather than the condition, as garbage can always be picked up and signage replaced, but the course layout is what I care about. Once you know a course, despite the signage (or lack of it), you can still have fun playing a well designed course.

It would actually be a great course if the front and back nines could have been mixed together. A wooded shot, an open shot, a wooded shot, an open shot, etc. However, as is, you play this really fun and interesting front nine, and then get dumped into this barren and bland back nine. I'd still go just to play the front nine though, as I really had fun on that portion of the course. If I could just rate the front nine, it would get a 4.5, but the back nine is closer to a 1.5 for me.

For those worried about the area, don't worry! No, that part of town isn't great, particularly after dark. But the park is fine in the daylight. I suppose if you're from a nice suburb, the drive in might intimidate you a little, but it's no big deal.

As a bonus, Pigwich is just north of the park, so do yourself a favor and grab yourself a sandwich afterward! It's a real hidden gem of the area.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful.

mixed review

1    5/24/2014   5/28/2014
Review By: ustenido
Played: 27  Reviewed: 9  Exp: 1.6 Years
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Elevation Change is fantastic. Fairways are decemtly maintained.
Cons: Lots of OB roads on back 9. Poison Ivy everywhere on front 9.
I had a hard time finding hole 3. There are no directional signs.
Trash everywere, and almost all signs on the back 9 are missing.
Lots of overgrowth around the tee box. Im a guy who wants a clean shot off the pad. Nothing bothers me more than an overhanging branch of the box, or a tree that obstructs the fairway wihin 50' of the pad. Im sure that is great for locals, but give us a break!
Other Thoughts: The back 9 was uninterresting, & the front 9 was a bit wild. You can lose a disc easily in the rough. And the fairways have oversprouted with foliage thatcauses a lot of ricoches off branches that are not visible from your throwing spot. I also think the distances are skewed to birds eye, which makes it difficult to make a shot when several holes dogleg.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

Challenging but fun course

2-4    7/7/2009   5/7/2013
Review By: Hockeydoc2112
Played: 16  Reviewed: 11
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Great use of elevation changes, wooded and open holes. Several holes made you really think about the shot, angle, speed etc of your drive selection.
Cons: When it rains - as it did in the 2009 World's - some pathways can become treacherous. Some ropes could have been useful to avoid steep, slick treks.
Other Thoughts: Played here in the 2009 World's. Kansas City probably has the best collection of DG courses in the world and this is one of the reasons why.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

 On Top Of The Hill

2-4    6/6/2012   6/19/2012
Review By: Clumsy Fumbles
Played: 8  Reviewed: 5  Exp: 9.6 Years
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Has a great variety of technical and long open holes. The front 9 is where the technical shots are and these are mainly in the woods. The back 9 is where the nice long open holes are. Holes have nice long Tee boxes. Not busy at all. Only seen 1 other person playing when I've been there.
Cons: Noticed a lot of trash laying around but not in your way. There isn't much when it comes to parking though. People park on the side of the road since there is only really one spot to park and its not very big. Make sure to use the bathroom beforehand since there is no bathrooms.
Other Thoughts: Neighborhoods not as bad as it looks. It's worth playing if your in the area.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

 

1    2/26/2012   2/26/2012
Review By: astomps
Played: 54  Reviewed: 39  Exp: 3.4 Years
This review was updated on 11/10/2012
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -front 9 is very scenic and has challenging technical shots.
-park is on a very nice piece of property
-tee pads are very large
-good chances to air it out
-lots of elevation
-it shows that a lot of work has been put into this park when you look at reviews on here from 2009 and before
Cons: -parking situation is terrible. too many chances to hit a car or have your car hit
-lots of chances to lose a disc between the fenced in area in the middle or down the side of the cliffs
-lots of trash in the woods
-other people using the park and being oblivious to DG players a strong possibility
-maybe too open on the back 9
Other Thoughts: this place to me is like a more spread out and open version of Water Works. When I played it, there were some people who basically just parked either in front of a hole or 25 feet from the pin (non DGers) This was just stupid and forces people to throw way out of the way. I would not recommend playing this course if there are a lot of non-DG people around but its a very nice course if its empty.

This is a huge park too btw, neighborhood argument for KC argument is so tired and mostly irrelevant.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

 Yes, play it

1    12/23/2011   12/25/2011
Review By: djschnabel
Played: 160  Reviewed: 25  Exp: 18 Years
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Great signage. The KC disc golf signs here and at Water Works are fantastic. Great tee boxes, stamped concrete, plenty of size. I love the fact that it's like two courses on one, Tight (not too tight) and technical, with advanced player length, and then open and bomber holes on the back 8. I hadn't seen the type of painted pipes in place of alternate tee positions before, and I love it!!! This set up is common in Kansas City, and I plan on mentioning it to a few designers in the MPLS area.
Cons: Some holes have two baskets set up, and for new to the course players, we ended up playing to a short basket when we could have played to longer ones, but since we didn't know for sure, we kept with our original shots. Garbage. WTH KC? It looked like a less desirable area, but we weren't too worried about playing there.
Other Thoughts: We loved our trip to KC to play the area courses. I told my wife if she wanted to move, KC would be acceptable for us. I plan on bringing the multiple pin position set up to the attention of MN course designers. It was easy (for the most part) to determine what hole and in what position the pin was in. I was shocked at the amount of litter in KC, here, at Water Works, and up top and down under in Roseville. I talked to a Missourian later in the week, and as it seems to be common in Missouri courses, I'd love to come back next summer and see that a local group had adopted a park to keep it clean(er).

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

 

1    11/10/2011   11/11/2011
Review By: Hector Chain
Played: 120  Reviewed: 118  Exp: 6.6 Years
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is really a tale of two halves. The first half of the course is wooded with big elevation changes, and the holes are a generally in the 200-400 foot range. I loved every one of these holes. You really see the "cliff" in Cliff Drive. The fairways were not unreasonably tight, but if you don't have a good drive that lands in the fairway, you have no shot at par.

The second half is mostly open and much longer, in the 400-800 foot range. More on those below.

Every hole has a concrete tee pad, and there are numerous pin positions on almost every hole (I think #9 only has one). The tee signs are very good, showing the various locations and distances. It was usually easy to narrow it down as to which location was being used because the short ones are obviously supposed to be visible from the tee.
Cons: Navigation here wasn't great. I had to pull up the map on my phone about every other hole to figure out which way to go. The back 9 is a little easier to navigate but a lot less interesting to play. Very few trees come into play. The challenge is mostly posed by the distance of the holes, and the OB areas (if you play the roads as OB, which is obviously the intent). There is some elevation on the back 9 (not nearly as much as the front 9), and the baskets are placed on slopes for challenging putting.

Some holes have alternate hole locations in use in addition to regular baskets. As a first timer, this was kind of confusing. But if I were a regular, I would definitely appreciate the opportunity for some variety on a couple holes.
Other Thoughts: I think this probably makes a good tournament course. The front 9 gives the edge to accurate, technical players, and the back 9 gives the big arms a chance to make up some ground. That said, I like wooded, technical courses with lots of elevation changes, and I wish more of the course was like the front 9. I'd give the front half a 4 and the back half a 2.5 or 3.

By the way, I didn't think the neighborhood was as bad as other reviews indicated, and I certainly didn't feel unsafe in the park. Keep in mind that many great disc golf courses are not in the best parts of town, and for good reason. Do you want lots of dog walkers, joggers, playground enthusiasts, and picnickers wandering through your course? Me neither. We'll keep this little gem to ourselves.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.

 

5+    7/30/2011   8/3/2011
Review By: jbradley266
Played: 53  Reviewed: 3  Exp: 4.6 Years
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - The best front nine I've ever played.
- A huge variety of shots
- Excellent use of elevation and wooded area.
- Challenging but not overly difficult
- A freaking basket hanging from the side of a rock.
Cons: - Not in the best neighborhood
Other Thoughts: I feel like this should be the best course or at least one of the best in the city/area. It has something for everyone, tight technical holes, extreme elevation changes, long wide open holes, just the right amount lefty and righty holes and a freaking basket hanging off the side of a rock. If this course was in any other part of the city it would be right up there.


It may not be the best course for beginners to start with. The better I get the more that enjoy playing this course, it's not easy but not insanely difficult, I'm looking at you Blue Valley. Just the right amount of challenge. I have to admit that the back nine (really #11 - #18) isn't all that much fun for me; not because of the course but because of my weenie arm. I did lose a disc (almost two) in the old municipal reservoir that I was fond of so that's probably peppering my opinion. But with that out of the way, I really love the front nine. Control and finesse is the name of the game and every hole has something interesting about it. The use of elevation and the woods is spectacular and oh…did I mention that there is a freaking basket hanging off the side of a rock on #8. It's the best front nine I have played so far and each time I play it seems to get better.


However, every time I play there I find myself wondering, "Where is everyone, why isn't this course crowded?" This course is better than most of the more popular courses that are always crowded, I'm looking at you Rosedale. But then I'm quickly reminded when I run into a load of trash some dumped or an unwanted pet someone left or come across a homeless couple living directly behind #2's basket, seriously right behind it. I had to lay up in order to keep my disc out of their bedroom, which was probably the right shot anyways. In all fairness someone has been showing this course some love lately because when I was there last it was super clean; maybe the couple living on #2 is also cleaning it up. I haven't even mentioned the suspect neighborhood you have drive through to get there but it's probably not the worst, here's looking at you Swope. I think that you can feel a little cornered and there's not much traffic. There always seems to be some creepy guy living in his car by #12, right about in range of my driver. I just consider it as an obstacle and laid up, avoiding the creepy guy "trap" if you will. It may also suffer some from being too close to Water Works a slightly better, more balanced, and safer course. I think the thing that really holds this course back is that it's a scary place to go and play which is a shame because this course is one of the best in the city.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.

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