4 Helpful / 0 Not
Great Summer Course for Serious Players
Pros: For what is still a new course it is in great shape and and perfect for the hot summer days of North Texas. Given more time and more foot traffic along with continued maintenance the course should only improve with time
- great location
- good mix of hole types
- great tee boxes and baskets
- almost every hole is a challenge
- tons of shade
- very few first timers or massive groups that tend to clog the other McKinney course on the weekends
Cons: Due to the course being so new it is still a little rough in areas and tends to need a little more "clearing out". I strongly suggest at least a small first aid kit w/ snake bite kit.
- To many trees on some of the holes turn it into luck of the draw and far less about skill
- beware of local plant life, a lot of it can leave you itching or bleeding
- beware of local wild life in summer, 5 snakes on my last visit
- beware of creek, in some places getting back out is very difficult
- this is NOT a casual, easy going course like the old McKinney course. While a fun course to play it is much more difficult
Other Thoughts: It is a great course already give time it will only get better.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 5 Not
It's like an Audobon revival... flat, nice holes, grass and underbrush are wicked.
Pros: I hate having to start on the defensive, but I feel I have to with this course, since I'm bucking the party line by only giving it a "3.0 - Good" rating. Before you click the "thumbs down" out of bias for your local course, please read the reasons and decide whether or not the comments are helpful to you... even if you're a local that loves the course and thinks its a five, realize that constructive criticism can be helpful even if you disagree with my rating.
Disclaimer aside, this course has several pros: location is great -- having this longer course right around the corner from Alex Clark Memorial is a great one-two duo to help alleviate course overcrowding in the Far North Dallas suburbs and give players a much better mix of shots and a chance to work on their long game.
Parking is excellent, tees are good, teesigns are helpful in finding the baskets. Online map available here is good as well. Layout flows well with minimal walking between holes.
The course is on a decent piece of land with minimal interference from other park users. The occasional walker/jogger/dog-walker may get in the way, but it won't slow down the game for long. for being part of a big, beautiful park, the course feels very peaceful, like you've escaped the city.
Decent mix of shots. Lots of great trees for shade in the summer. OB streams are a plus and a minus -- add nice challenge and visual interest, though they do eat discs.
This course boasts several long holes which is a nice addition for this area, immediate area with doesn't have many other bomber holes -- the closest place with any bomber shots is Rockwall, which is a pretty hefty drive.
The relatively recent completion of Tollway-121 makes this course 10x more accessible from most other parts of the Metroplex and makes it much more accessible than the McKinney area used to be.
Cons: The biggest con to this course -- when I played it -- was the grass. Most of the course was poorly mowed or not mowed at all, with thick grass up to the waist on some holes, grungy mud abundant (slow drying because of all the tree cover), abundant bugs from all the water present, and pervasive nasty, nasty underbrush for any shot that missed or kicked or richocheted off the fairway.
I'll freely admit that the course could easily deserve another half-star or even a full star with better maintenance, but I'm reviewing the course as played... I would reserve my bias somewhat since I've only played the course once, but I played through with a local who assured me that the course conditions as experienced were not unusual. The few holes near the parking lot are very well kept, but past that, the unkempt course kept it from being fun, resulted in several lost discs, lots of bug bites, thorns and searching through thickets, and overall just put me in mind of the now virtually defunct and unplayed Audobon course in Garland.
For locals who remember Audobon in it's heyday, these comments will all seem familiar. It's another lowlying, flat course winding along a stream with moderately obstructed airshots, nasty grass and unkempt rough areas. It's even got a similar graffitied overpass towards the tail end of the course. Audobon was a lot of fun when it was freshly mowed and dry... which didn't happen often. Same holds true for Towne Lake... it would be a lot of fun in great shape, but that just doesn't appear to be it's primary operating state.
In addition, holes get too repetitive. Lack of elevation and similar tree density on most of the holes means there just aren't that many types of shots required to score well here. Play gets repetitive and with the searching for discs it just doesn't make you want to play twice. Few places to really pick up strokes on other players -- there will be occasional birdies, occasional bogeys (usually due to OB or lost discs) and a lot of stock pars.
Fairways are generally wide enough that mediocre shots aren't penalized unless they kick out of bounds -- bad shots and good shots alike will card a lot of threes. Bad shots and good shots alike have similar chances of kicking into the rough or into the stream, thanks to the low ceiling on many holes. With mown grass there would be some exciting roller opportunities which would spice up play, but as it stands now, those types of shots are impossible.
A small annoyance to tack onto the list is that signage throughout the course is oddly arranged. IMHO, the best courses have clear signage is behind and off to the side of the tee, facing the teebox so players on the tee or waiting to throw can study the sign and the hole. At Towne Lake the teesigns are arranged facing the previous pin, so sometimes the teesigns are in front of the teebox, facing away from the tee, sometimes to the side, sometimes behind the tee, sometimes close, sometimes far away... I see the intentionality that was used, presumably to make it easier to navigate the course, but it just feels very awkward and was a poor design choice. On a few tees where the signs are in front of (but facing away from) the teebox, they risk getting in the way on throws and mean that they player has to walk off the teebox, turn backwards and look away from the hole while studying the sign -- just awkward. I've never seen a course with signs placed in this way, and I really hope it's not repeated anywhere else.
Other Thoughts: I really wanted to like this course. I have many fond memories of Alex Clark and have been anxiously following rumors, then updates, then pictures as this course was developed. I have immense respect for the North Dallas disc golf community and for all the people who helped get Towne Lake in the ground. And from reading my review, you'll realize that I think the designers did a very nice job with the piece of land that is here. It's just not the kind of land that makes the best disc golf course, and the lack of maintenance is a park issue that (AFAIK) is no fault of the designers. This a good course and does a good job with what is here...
There are some nice holes in the mix and the course is a nice change if you are in the area -- especially if you catch the course on a good day when it's been tended. But despite similar course ratings on this board, I don't think this course can hold a candle to some of the other DFW-area courses like Turner, Veterans, Z-Boaz, Rockwall and Cedar Hill. Those other courses have far better shot variety, far better maintenance, far more elevation, far more excitement and immeasurably higher fun and replay factors.
Quick synopsis: bring discs you don't mind losing and definitely play if you are in the area but don't go too far out of your way... you're likely to be disappointed. There are much better places to spend your time.
10 of 15 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
An Awesome North Dallas Course
Pros: Found just off of I-75 about 20 minutes northwest of Downtown Dallas you will find one of the finest disc golf courses I've had the honor of playing. This course is all about the details and the massive amount of work that went into making it great.
The first thing you will notice is the ample parking and beautiful park the course resides on. Please take note that every single one of these fairways was cut out of dense underbrush and the amount of work that was spent to create this wonderful course can not be under appreciated.
For any course to be great it has to have the proper equipment and this course gets just about everything right. It has some of the best concrete teeboxes I've ever played on, with rubber mats placed at the base of each one to knock off mud and other debris. The cages are mounted on concrete blocks allowing for quick changes in pin position. This is a fantastic touch and makes finding the pin a lot easier. More courses should institute this detail. The teesigns are high quality Houck signs and do a great job of showing the lines ahead clearly and efficiently.
The hole variety here is amazing, with many holes having multiple paths to the basket and some demonstrating extreme risk vs. reward scenarios (see Hole 8). The alternate holes really offer new challenges and add to the overall difficulty of this pro level course. There are many memorable holes on this course, but my favorites have to be 15, a great uphill par 4 and alternate 16 a challenging over water monster hole that will test your limits of OB. Speaking of OB, a creek runs through the whole course really adding some risky lines to the basket.
The course is beautiful aesthetically and is impeccably up kept. Which is a testament to the people who play and maintain this course, you can tell they really do love it.
Cons: Very few courses are perfect and this course does have a few flaws. The first is the cages here. I played this course during a tournament and I heard many open players complaining about spit outs. The fact is, the Mach 2 baskets just don't have a enough chains and putts will squirt through far to often. The second is when this course gets wet, it is very muddy, this mud can make its way on to the teepads during a heavy day of use and make footing very treacherous. Finally this course seems to favor a right fading shot for RHBH players, some my not like this, but for me I found it refreshing and a welcome reprieve from most Hyzer city courses in Texas. So bring your Annys and Flicks with you, they will come in handy. These are minor quips with the first being very fixable and hopefully new cages will be put in eventually.
Other Thoughts: I had the pleasure of playing this course and Turner Park on two consecutive days of tournaments and had a blast. This course is easily one of the 5 best courses Ive ever played and I would make the trip back up I-45 any day to play it again. If your in Dallas put this one on your itinerary, it is an absolute must play.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Well Made Course
+Right off the Highway, but set off far enough that you don't notice it.
+Huge parking lot and easy to locate 1st tee.
+Pro (Blue) and Am (Red) tee boxes.
+Dual pin positions.
+Pins sit on top of concrete blocks. At first I thought this was just a nice aesthetic feature, but I soon realized that when used with the signage you could determine the correct pin placement without guessing. If you see a block with no basket then you know it's in the alternate position.
+From the pro pads, drives over big gaps of water. Very fun.
+Long holes with tight lines.
+Variety of shots, but lots of doglegs to the right. As a RHBH I got forced to shoot a several anhyzers and laser-straight shots.
+Signs and Tee Boxes were perfect.
+Well maintained grounds.
-Water hazard is challenging to retrieve discs from. I didn't get one wet, but I saw someone in their underwear that did getting theirs back.
-Course stays muddy well after rain, but it's only intolerable on one hole.
-As a Fort Worth player, it's just too far to get to as much as I'd like to.
Other Thoughts: When the ground dries up we'll go back for sure. I think this is definitely one of the premier courses of DFW. Wouldn't be surprised if I ended up playing a tournament there this year.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Towne Lake Rundown!!!
Pros: -VERY well designed!!!
-Concreter t-pads for inter. and pro...all pads are long and wide giving you ease and freedom of shot angle and run-up...each t-box also has a rubber mat for scraping mud off of your shoes!!!
-Multiple pin position...each pin sits on a small concrete block making pin location easier noticed from box
-Signage is great. Nice large signs with great fairway depiction
-Shot variety (ani's, hyzers, skips, str8, tunnel, downhill, uphill, shorts and longs...it has it all)
-Terrain variety (lots of water hazards, heavily wooded, ups and downs, overs and unders...trees that is)
-True par 4 holes
-Very clean and well kept...lots of trash cans.
-Where there is water, it's very very clear. (if you have a retriever, you won't be losing a disc)
-Little to no traffic
-Hole-to-hole navigation is easy...no map, no problem.. you won't get lost
Cons: -Muddy after a rain (that's disc golf...no biggy)
-Creek does have very steap banks, so a water hazard shot could be difficult to get to without a retriever...X-tra string needed
Other Thoughts: There's really nothing bad to say about this course. In relation to what another viewer mention...this course is almost perfect!!!
Difficuilt course whether playing from the inter. or pro boxes. True test of your game.
This course is loaded with shot variety and terrain variety and is very, very picturesque. I would say my favorite hole was #16.
Though not centered in the metroplex, being in McKinney, this course is a MUST PLAY for sure. Travled 1 hour and 20 min. to get here....and was totally worth the drive.
If traveling to this course, you might think about checking out Alex Clark Memorial as a warm-up course being that it's right across the street and is a, or seems like a really dumbed down version of Towne Lake. If you like North Park, you'll like this course....North Park on a steroid overdose for sure.
Will definately be playing this course again for sure and if you haven't played it, I suggest you do.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Great range of shots required, very very nice sign postings and tee boxes, very challenging. Heavily wooded forest, open field shots, creek edge shots, anhyzers, hyzers, tomahawks, rollers, thumbers, everything you'd want. Two tees and two pin choices on nearly every hole.
Cons: Really muddy after rain, takes a while to dry out. It was either hole 15 or 16, they have a pro tee that is impossible, 719ft, and the first 250 aren't just over water, but is very clouded with trees on both banks and in the middle of the water. You must have very long tomahawk throw to clear it.
Other Thoughts: Very nice course, will play for years to come. Very challenging, can't wait to break even on this course.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
One of the best in DFW
Pros: Many factors make Towne Lake one of my favorite courses in DFW.
The facilities and location are premium. Right off a major freeway and a short drive away from the shorter Alex Clark, another great course in my mind. Towne Lake is set in a disc golf specific part of a much larger park that boasts a nice lake with a 1.3 mile walking path, concession stands, paddle boat rentals, baseball fields, playground, volleyball courts and horseshoe pits. A small green-space past the first line of trees off the parking lot provides a nice place away from cars and people to warm up your arm with some controlled shots or a game of catch. The practice basket is nestled in some trees with small undulations giving you the opportunity to practice putting around obstacles and with very minor elevation changes. Benches and a bulletin board are positioned away from the parking lot and other park users give you a nice place to relax before or between rounds.
The course is a good example of a modern design catering to the advanced and pro golfer. The creek in play on many holes gives you a very high risk if you are going for a birdie opportunity but isn't so close that you are forced to bring it into play. The fairways have a nice length to density ratio (long holes are open, short have tight gaps). The "line of attack" to the basket is well defined on most holes with few options available, meaning the line exists but you have to hit it clean. The concrete tees are of my favorite tapered design and are the perfect size so you don't feel cramped on your run-up. All but 5 holes have two tee boxes that do a good job of changing the hole rather than simply adding distance. It seems like every time I start thinking the baskets should move pin positions, it happens. It isn't frequent, but enough to keep it fresh. Some simply add length while most give you a completely different hole to contend with. The par 4 holes require placement as well as good distance off the tee to score well and a 3 truly feels like a birdie. The walk from hole to hole never seems like it is more than necessary. The design incorporated many interesting and beautiful trees making this secluded course enjoyable regardless of your score. The trees offer excellent shade during the blistering Texas summer and stop the wind from being a major factor on the technical holes.
A course can only be so good without a good local group of players. The efforts of the course designers that made it possible. The guys that run weekly minis and PDGA events. The players that make an effort to keep all the trash picked up and the course looking as good as possible. Sitting on a far edge of DFW keeps it from being overcrowded and the difficulty, due in part to the daunting Wilson Creek, keep it from being overcrowded with the more casual players that tend to stick to the Alex Clark.
Cons: SNAKES, be warned, I know of two people who have been bitten by deadly snakes. Mosquitoes, not as bad as some courses, but present all the same.
Other Thoughts: The course isn't too bad after a heavy rain. I've played it frequently sense it opened and it plays nice in all seasons and weather. I waited a while to write this review so I could really get a long term feel from the course.
If you catch a grammatical or spelling error, anything that would make this more readable, please send me a pm.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 2 Not
thousand wood forest
Pros: Very well designed course! paved tee boxes with the option of pro or par. The pro placements are very challenging. The tee boxes are even equipped with rubber mats to scrape mud of your shoes. There are even optional pin placements. Very seldom do you find a map of the entire course posted at hole 1 which I liked. All the signs and baskets are in excellent condition due to the course's new construction. Some of the holes were like throwing through a tunnel of trees....very pictureesque. The course was very easy to follow and very seldom doubled back on itself.
Cons: On the day I played the creek was flowing very quickly. If you lose a disc in the drink on one of these days give up all hope of retrieving it.
Other Thoughts: I played this course for the first time yesterday. It was a bit of a drive from where I live in Denton but it was well worth the trip. I have a new favorite course!
11 of 13 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Shot makers course
Pros: If you don't have a big arm, but want a top of the line course... this is it! Every shot is technical. Accuracy is always the premium skill. Even the long holes require accuracy or the price must be paid. If you can control the disc, this is the best course I've played. Very well maintained.
Cons: You don't want to play this course after a rain. I can't stress that enough.
Other Thoughts: IF the maintenance falls off, this course will overgrow very quickly. Until then, enjoy a great shot makers course.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Excellent concrete teepads that are wide at the back. These should be the standard for all courses.
Excellent signs that tell you everything you need to know to play this course.
Dual tees and alternate pin positions gives this course 72 different setups.
Just like it's sister course across the highway, this land is excellent for disc golf with beautiful trees that provide huge amounts of shade and a monstrous, steep banked, deep creek that provides a pucker factor and is a challenge to avoid.
Cons: I have never played a course that was more unbalanced and lefty/sidearm favoring. I did not count but would estimate that of eighteen holes, twelve of them curve to the right (of the 72 holes 48 of them curve to the right). This is a minor con for me because I love throwing sidearm and long annies.
Many of the posted distances on the signs are obviously wrong.
Be prepared to lose discs in the deep creek. It is inevitable. I lost a blue Champion Boss, an orange Champion Monarch, and a grey DX Teebird on my first time. I will definitely be a little more conservative next time I play this course.
The first half of this course I was amazed that there was absolutely no poison ivy to be found anywhere. The second half of the course I was amazed because I have NEVER seen so much poison ivy. Stay away from this course if you're allergic.
Other Thoughts: This course gives McKinney the perfect balance of course because if it's too hard just go across the highway to the other course. If the other course is too easy just come here.
You could warm up at the other birdie fest course and get cocky and then come here and be humbled.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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