3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Randolph Park is an enjoyable 18-hole layout. It's a tale of two designs with the front nine exclusively in the woods while the back nine spreads out across the across the remainder of the park.
- Very solid and fun hole layouts. Layouts range from tight, wooded ace runs to long, open, bomber holes. The first nine holes, despite all being wooded and with many of similar length, do offer different looks, preventing a feeling of repetitiveness.
- Course follows the tried-and-true method of starting with a series of easier, warm-up holes leading to longer and more challenging holes throughout. That is until you get to #17 & 18, which seem out of place. The front nine is easier, so you'll want to be aggressive early to get your birdies.
- Great course for beginners, casual players and the like. With the front 9 being much easier, it's a great way to build up one's confidence before giving said players a taste of a much more advanced level of disc golf. Or, you just skip the back 9 and let them work their way up to the longer holes.
- The wooded holes, for the most part, are a solid lot. #5 is a challenging, 210-foot hole that features a narrow fairway. This is the type of hole that many players could just as easily birdie as bogey depending on whether their shot is on- or offline by a matter of feet or inches. #7 is my favorite of the wooded holes. It's a split fairway, 335-foot hole that does allow multiple shots and creativity. It's not overly challenging. So even a decent tee shot should set you up for a simple up-and-down (or two-putt) for a 3.
- The back nine offers more variety in its hole offerings. My favorite hole on the course is #11. It's a 246 foot open shot that throws over a (believed to be) dried out pond/retention area. If you land short, you have a decently uphill shot to the basket that's close to the edge of the drop-off. It's not an overly challenging hole, but it's a very enjoyable hole for watching your tee shot as it sails to the basket. (Note: you can see the basket and drop-off in front of the basket in the background of the picture for hole #12.)
- Hole #14 also offers a cool layout, even if it's also not the most difficult of holes. On this 445 foot hole, the basket is protected on two sides by narrow trenches filled with rocks. It's part of the water runoff drainage system towards a retaining pond area (separate from the one I mentioned for hole #11). I didn't see anything mentioning if the rocks are considered OB; but, if they are, that would add an element of difficulty to this hole.
Cons: The course has an odd flow to it. The front nine is compacted into a small portion of the woods in the back of the park that leads to a quick play. Contrast that to the back nine being spread out across the entire park. You have long walks from #10 to #11; #12 to 13; and #15 to 16. Most of the holes on the back 9 are good, so you understand why they're there. Just be prepared for the total contrast.
- There's a major inconsistency when it comes to tee signs and tee markers. Without a printed map, it would be very difficult to navigate this course for a first timer. That said, even with the map, my buddy and I had difficult times finding all the tee markers. #12, 17 & 18 were the ones we spent the most time searching for. Also, between the long walks and the numerous walking trails that weave throughout the wooded portion of the course, next tee signs would come in handy.
- I wasn't a fan of the final two holes on the course. They stuck out like a sore thumb. After playing probably the most challenging, and arguably best, hole on the course on #16, you finish your round with two relatively basic wooded holes. Why not squeeze in two other holes somewhere else on the course and eliminate these holes? You're already walking plenty on the back 9, so it doesn't matter if current #16 were the closing hole and you had a longer walk back to the parking lot.
- It would have been nice to have more special and/or challenging holes. For the most part, there are a lot of holes in the B to C+ range and almost nothing in the A-grade range. Notice even in the holes I mention I enjoyed I did have to preface them by noting they weren't that difficult, but had more of an enjoyment factor to them. This isn't something that impacts my rating, but it's worth mentioning.
Other Thoughts: Randolph Park's disc golf course is enjoyable even if it's not flashy. Take away the drop-off of the last two holes, and I was liking what the course had to offer through the first 16.
- The park itself is great. It has a ton of amenities such as ball fields, tennis courts, running trails, playground and a great, big pool/water area. The waterpark is one of the bigger ones I have seen for a community park of this size.
- Advanced players will shot really low here, taking advantage of a relative lack of difficulty. There isn't a lot of risk/reward to this course, which may be part of the overall lack of great holes. Even on hole #6, a 448 foot, dogleg right wooded hole, it's a pretty simple design. I had two very average shots and still had a putt for a 3.
- Overall, my experience at Randolph was a positive one. I was expecting more to this course based on others reviews and ratings. It's not as good as its current rating merits, but it's still an above-average course. This is a pretty solid 3.0 in my book. Do like I did and play this course on your way to Mountain Lake.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Strokes of brilliance hidden by poor upkeep
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has a lot to offer if you know where to find it. (see complaints about navigation below)
To start, it combines a lot of wooded and open holes, but only 1 that mixes both. Front nine is technical, wooded and mostly short-medium in length. The long hole is a giant "U" so don't expect to be able to bomb one in here.
You'll probably use a fair amount of your bag on this course. You'll likely be throwing technical mids-putters on the front 9, and then you'll have some wide-open fields on the back to bomb some drivers.
All of the baskets were in really good shape. They were all top of the line Innova catchers, however a few had some rusted chains that may present problems in the future.
There are some REALLY cool shots out here. Namely holes 14 and 15. 14 has you throwing into several rock-lined drainage ditches, hoping you don't chip your plastic. 15 is probably my favorite shot on the course. Just a simple midrange tunnel shot (reminiscent of a hole at Winthrop) but the well manicured trees and park environment add to the beauty of it. Hole 16 is probably the other sweet shot as you'll be able to bomb one out near the opening of the woods and then throw a technical up-shot to finish it out. My advice; Don't give up on this course after hole 10. You really want to play holes 14-16, so pull your best Lewis and Clark and navigate to these if you can.
Cons: A consideration for future development, I would suggest some navigational signs. Perhaps only a product of the forest floor being covered in leaves, however I was unable to find the next tee in several instances. Compounding this confusion was the fact that the tees were natural, perhaps some with toe boards/frames, but nothing distinguishing them from the rest of the leaf-laden landscape.
Many of the tee signs no longer existed as they had been broken off of their pedestals. This only added to the confusion of finding the next hole. I distinctly remember being unable to find hole 17's tee. I used my best judgement based on the map provided online.
The navigation issues don't end in the woods either. Once you've played hole 10, unless you have a map on hand you'll have a tough time finding 11. An astute observer may have noticed baskets scattered in the fields on the right on the drive into the park. That's where holes 11-14 are, but there is quite the walk between several of these holes, with zero signage. You best bring a map!
There aren't many, if any at all, risky shots that you can be rewarded on. Zero water hazards, no major chance of OB. Your standard fare.
I couldn't tell if some of the park amenities (benches mainly) were for the course or for the walking trails. After seeing several benches pointing away from the tee pads, I assumed the latter. Thus, the park is lacking some of the typical stuff I'd like to see on a course. Navigation signs, benches, trash cans, non-natural pads, etc...
Other Thoughts: This course was a real treat to play. Honestly, holes 14-16 are what made it stand out to me, otherwise I probably wouldn't play it very often. Since I travel down I-81 fairly often, this will probably become one of my normal stops (along with Steele Creek in Bristol). The park is beautiful, the course is fun, you'll have some shots at aces and hopefully a good time. Plenty of food and other things in the area as well. I do recommend it, despite it suffering from a few of the things above.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pretty park; nice shot selection
Pros: -Gorgeous park with tons to do with disc golf included.
-Shot selection is great never got bored at any hole.
-Great new Innova discatchers.
-Nice mix of wood and field.
Cons: -The walks from holes I.E. hole 10 to hole 11 is ridiculous 13 to 14.
-Horrible signage, Some with no par some with no diagram at all signs between holes very small hard to find next hole (first time playing) . Which almost makes me think that a 9 hole was originally here and then tried to stretch another 9 across the whole park complex to make it a 18 hole course.
-No concrete tees
Other Thoughts: The horseshoe hole is kind of a crazy type of hole that I wasn't expecting at this park.
If Im in the area I'll play again now that I know where all of the tees and baskets are.
Get some better signs some tees and just make it a 20 something hole course to fill those gaps between the good holes on the course and call this a 4 disc rating course!
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
An interesting mix
Pros: The course has a big variety of holes which makes for a fun and interesting round. The first half of the course is mostly through fairly dense woods, while the second half plays through mostly rolling fields around drainage ponds. The elevation available was pretty minimal, but it was used well where possible to make things more interesting.
The wooded holes had a great mix of straight holes and holes with bends and doglegs left and right. They forced many different types of shots in order to score well, and put a premium on accuracy. The open holes were more about shot placement and controlled distance to have a shot at the hole and stay out of the retention ponds (empty when I played, but they could be a cool water feature at times). There was a good mix of lengths, from ace run holes to some good places to air it out including one hole at around 900'.
The signage on the course was very good,with good hole maps that were very descriptive of how to find the next hole when there was a long walk or it was otherwise not immediately obvious. The baskets were in good shape with painted spokes to point the way to the next tee. The course loops back near the parking lot in the middle which is always nice.
Cons: There are a couple holes that have silly fairway shapes in the woods, especially #6 which was very long and basically boomerang shaped with a sharp dogleg down a very tight fairway. It would be nice to have the open holes and wooded holes more mixed rather than half the course of each, but that would be very difficult to incorporate into the design, so it feels like a couple different courses put together.
There are some very long walks between sections of the course to avoid other park features. I definitely prefer that to having the course interfere with paths and sports fields, but it still breaks up the flow of the course. They are well marked though, which keeps it from being too much of a navigation issue.
None of the holes really stood out to me as anything really special, and the course seemed a bit repetitive at times.
Other Thoughts: This course has something for everyone, from easy to hard, long to short, and open to tightly wooded. The course is approachable for newer players, but would be pretty tough. More experienced players will find some fun challenges, though the open holes don't have enough chances for bad shots to be punished to be very tough.
I definitely would play this course if you're in the area, but it's not really a destination course that I would drive a long way to play.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Woody and Buzz
Excellent signage, especially for the wooded holes. Signs at tee will show distance, path(s) to basket, next tee location. At basket, red spoke indicates direction of next tee, as well as some signs on trees.
Two 9-hole loops both ending near same parking lot.
Within 1.5 miles of I81, restaurants and petrol stations nearby, bathrooms at site. Located in large multi-use park, including a large pool/water park.
Favourite hole #16: 560', first 2/3rds in open, last 1/3rd in woods, retention basin directly between you and basket. If you play to the right, you then have a long right-turning shot to reach the basket deep in the woods.
With leaves on the trees and water in the retention basins, the chance of losing a disc is a bit high.
Wooded holes play amongst multiple walking trails, so be aware of non-players.
Very long walk between holes 10 to 11, 12 to 13.
Least favourite hole #6: After smashing your discs against trees the first five ~250' slight dogleg holes, you get to do so for 450' on this tight right dogleg! :-O
To find tee #1, go left after entering the park, past pool, past gazebo on left, large parking lot on left just after.
Holes 1-5, 7-9, 17&18 are very similar - in the woods, slight doglegs (about half to the left, half to the right), between 183' to 335', most in the mid-200's.
Holes 10-15 are mostly open, bring water retention basins into play, and vary in length from 250' to the monster 860' that is #13.
After finishing #10, follow the fence on the left until it turns sharply to the left, where you will find tee #11.
After finishing #12, walk along the fence, keeping it and the soccer fields to your right, and the woods to your left - you'll eventually find the tee for #13, with its basket being 860' away, down then way to the left.
Fun and challenging course - a bit repetitive in the woods, so the option of airing it out the next few holes is a welcoming sight.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: good variety. tight shots big shots and wind can be a big factor. Very nice park.
Cons: a little hard to navigate the first time. some holes are to far apart.
Other Thoughts: not every hole is a par three. some tough ones. great job on the course design.
1 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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