7 Helpful / 1 Not
Rock Springs Park Review
Pros: I'll keep some of my thoughts out, as much of it has been said already in the other reviews for this park. I really dug the isolated, quiet backwoods vibe that you get immediately upon reaching the first tee. While my group was there, we didn't see one other person anywhere in the park (except some guy driving slowly by in a car) the entire time and it was very peaceful.
This course was obviously very carefully designed to take full advantage of the dramatic topography of the area and each tee was very well placed to allow for maximum use of the available space without any basket/fairway overlap. I never once felt like I was wasting time between a basket and the next tee. The signage at each tee was well above average for the area and gave me a really good idea where each basket was; which was very helpful since most of the baskets hide out-of-view from the tees. That made me think carefully about each shot and weigh the risk vs. reward of a poorly considered or poorly managed throw - very nice touch.
The concrete tees were very level, of a decent size and the baskets were all in pristine condition. There wasn't the usual mud and mulch ring around the tees or baskets (as is the usual for St. Louis) and only a couple of places I had to walk to get to the next tee or basket were really muddy or washed out(not bad for a woodsy park just 2 days after rain).
If this were closer to home, I'd play it more frequently. My hats off to the designers!
Cons: Unfortunately, for every great thing about the Rock Springs course, there was something bad to drag my personal opinion of the course down.
The first thing I noticed was that, unless I was just terrible at reading the satellite map and the directions, there wasn't really any parking near the course. There was a small parking lot a couple of miles from the 1st tee, but we ended up parking in a gravel circle next to a shelter... where we couldn't find anything in the way of a restroom (oh well, we're all used to peeing in the woods I guess... but the ladies won't like that).
Each of the tee signs lists an alternate blue tee, but I only found about 5 of them remain and they are worn rubber mats laid in the grass. The ones that were there were uneven, unlevel and not really useable.
Although Creve Coeur Lake has often been worse, the grass here was really tall on the fairways in some places and showed signs that it doesn't get cut very frequently. That made it hard to find discs and meant itchy, scraped ankles and soaked socks and shoes. Also, there is a very serious Poison Ivy problem on every single hole. Usually, P.I. is a only a problem when you have to go off into the brush to look for an errant shot - but at Rock Springs, it is all over the fairways, growing along with the grass and almost every basket had a big ring of it growing right against the post. So, I constantly had to stick my hand right into the P.I. to pick up a disc.
I thought the underbrush surrounding the fairways on some other area courses was bad... but this takes the prize. Just stepping 1ft. off the fairway usually meant you were up to your shoulders in the nastiest thicket of P.I., thistle, grabber vines, thorny weeds and every other kind of ugliness imaginable. I usually can tolerate to spend a lot of time looking for badly thrown shots, but on this course, you can usually kiss that disc goodbye. My arms are torn to hell and I've got a rash all over both from the 3 minutes I tried to find the first disc I lost on hole 12. If you find it, you can keep it because you earned it. My other friends permanently lost discs too.
Another big issue this park had was garbage. I saw only 1 single trash can on the whole course (hole 10) and it was overflowing so badly that there was 3x more trash piled up on the ground around it that it could ever hold. There was literally trash thrown around on every tee and by every basket. I don't get how it's so hard to carry out the empty, lighter weight containers for what people carry in and why the parks dept. can't take a few minutes to empty the only can on the course.
Finally, I'll add that this course is NOT meant for the physically challenged. Many of the tees require one to actually hike up a muddy 45° hill, slide down a steep roadside bank or jump a small creek just to get where you needed to be. My group and I were fine, but we're all young and in good physical shape. Just saying for those who need to know that kind of stuff.
Other Thoughts: The course is well worth playing and made for a very thoughtful and satisfying game, but coming prepared will make a difference. Bring a course map for sure (the one found in the DGCR files is great) as you'll need it the first time. I strongly suggest you wear waterproof boots or shoes, long pants and plenty of insect repellant. With some cleanup, mowing and efforts to reduce the Poison Ivy, this course could easily get a much higher rating from me. (Nothing personal, this review is just my opinion... as all reviews are just that.)
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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