4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Pa Davis pulls a lot of variety out of its relatively standard park setting, making use of woods bordering the park's edge and the array of trees peppered throughout to create a variety of shots and holes: tunnel shots (18!), long drawn out par 4s (hole 10 is over 700'!), birdie opportunities (16-17) - there's a lot of variety here considering the terrain itself isn't very varied.
I was really impressed with the length of the holes at Pa Davis. The predominance of holes over 300' (all but 3! and almost half around or (sometimes well) above 350') gave this course a distinct feel compared to other city park courses I've played. The length is really felt in a qualitative sense, rather than just as added distance: Pa Davis throws an array of challenges at you as it forces you to stretch out, be it hitting particular windows, certain lines, or avoiding obstacles. The course features several par 4s. Sneaking into the woods for a few holes is a nice touch, as are the few ~250' holes at the course's end: they provide a welcome change of pace at the point you reach them.
Positioning long hole 10 directly in the round's middle was a nice touch: it seemed like the perfect place for it.
All tees are concrete at this point. The older tees on the front nine are serviceable; the newer tees on the back nine are possibly the best I've ever seen. As someone used to the spaciousness of natural tees on my home courses, I'm kind of a tee glutton - more is always better - and these did not disappoint. From a practical standpoint, these help mitigate any damp ground that may (and will) crop up in the wet south.
Tee signs are very nice, newer and swankier than the ones currently pictured on DGCR. They often feature helpful navigation indications.
Parking is readily available, as is a portipotty.
Cons: The park itself has some inherent limitations that limit the course's ceiling. I try not to factor in setting aesthetics too much when rating a course, but the park itself is noticeably drab. More to the point, the course's terrain (holes 1-4 excepting) is flat and dotted with trees in a uniform way that doesn't necessarily do the course designers any favors. I think they did a tremendous job with what they had to work with, but the terrain's uniformity reduces variety.
If I had to gripe with how the course plays, I'd point to how shot and hole types seemingly come in bunches: holes 1-4 are the wooded holes (after which there are none), 4-6 give you three of the course's longest back to back, and 13, 16, and 17 give you the course's only sub-300' holes in relatively quick succession. Finding a way to better intermix these characteristics - for instance, placing the wooded holes in the middle of the round and better distributing the few short holes throughout - would help maximize the sense of variety. As it stands, there's a bit of self-sameness with the holes at times, although smart design minimizes this to an impressive degree. There are course flow issues that impede implementing the above, so I don't necessarily fault the designers; it'd just be ideal to better intermix the distinct aspects of the course.
Speaking of course flow: with much of the course visible from any point during your round, navigation can be slightly wonky at times. I never got truly off track, due to a combination of indications on the tee signs and usage of the course map (which I took a picture of at the start of my round to work off of), but the course's openness makes it hard to always inherently imply which way to go next.
Virtually no elevation to speak of, but that's Louisiana's fault, not Pa Davis'.
Other Thoughts: Having played Pa Davis, the Acadianas, and Heymann park, this course tops the list of must-plays in Lafayette. I really enjoyed it, particularly the preponderance of relatively longer hole lengths. Acadiana Park makes for arguably a better destination since there are two solid courses on site, but Pa Davis provides the best 18 in my eyes. Plus, the parks are less than 3 miles away, so you can easily hit both. Only time for two rounds? Play this and Acadiana Park's Ace Run. They're great complements to each other.
Area safety issues: Several reviewers have mentioned that the area is a rough one. While I don't disagree, I was probably more freaked out by expectations based on reading said reviews than the actual area. It's always good to be informed and play it safe, but don't go in expecting roving bands of marauders, either. I only say this because I arrived seeing ghosts, myself, only to be "disappointed." ; )
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Play this one if in Lafayette
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course is laid out fairly well. The first four holes go through a lower, heavily wooded area. The rest of the holes are in a higher, moderately wooded area. There are no holes where trees do not come into play.
This course has some longer distances that require long, controlled drives due to trees. It is a very good challenge without being unreasonably difficult.
Cons: The first four holes get sloppy and muddy when it rains. Navigation can be iffy on the first holes, especially between one and two. Pay close attention to the signs.
The first nine holes have smaller tee pads. This is only minor, but they pale in comparison to the larger tee pads on the back nine.
The walking path OB is a bit silly on a few holes. On one in particular, you can be OB and only 15-20 feet from the basket. When you take relief from the OB area, you basicaly have a drop-in putt. There is another hole of nearly 700 feet whose basket is almost that close to a sidewalk. Do you really need to put the basket next to a sidewalk on a hole that long?
Other Thoughts: The poster who indicated that the new tee pads are backwards simply doesn't understand how to lay out a tee pad. The new tee pads are narrower in the front than in the back. This allows you to approach the narrower release point from a wider angle. The pads are a magnificent 15' long and are the nicest tee pads anywhere in Louisiana, but they are only on the back nine.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Feels almost like a real golf course:
-As of 6/29/13 all holes now have t-pads, brand new hole signs (that include how to get to the next hole), and bench's to sit. a great upgrade.
-No random foot traffic mostly only disc golfers present while playing.
-Wide open yet still tight with plenty of obstacles and a few hazards.
-Great variety of holes for BOTH back hand and fore hand throwers.
-Holes range from field (5), to light woods(11), to dense woods (2)
-Good bit of shade
-Some great grip it and rip it holes.
Cons: -Hole one turns into a swamp with a little rain. all mud.
-While there are brand new t-pads in 9-18, they were installed backwards (kinda funny in an odd way)
-Can be a bit too long of a course sometimes.
Other Thoughts: The new t-pads and signs make for a much more "professional" kind of feel when playing. The bench's are also really nice whether taking a break before t'ing off or even just putting a bag down, they're far enough from the t-pad so as not a distraction to those throwing.
Sometime around spring/summer 2012 they cleaned Pa Davis up A LOT, and have continued to maintain the grounds.
Some may be put off by the entrance to the park. It isn't exactly the nicest part of town. But its far from the worst.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
A great course
Pros: The first four holes are beautiful. Right off of tee #1 you are placed in a choice situation. Take the iffy straight line for an easy bird over the out of bounds line, or take the safe route to par... Course as a whole is great for all golfers.
Nice length including one monster 700+ (play slightly to the left for the best lies). Nice contrast of wooded to open holes and lies. Lots of choices.
Cons: While the first four holes are wonderfully planned and executed the course as a whole is difficult to navigate. The sign for #12 is missing and several signs to direct to the next tee-box are missing as well. After hole #8 there are no more concrete tee boxes, which is easily forgettable. Signs that are present are accurate for the most part, although some do leave detail to be desired.
Other Thoughts: Follow the signs that direct you through the course... they will not lead you astray. If there is no sign then the other tee box is nearby. Just look for it.
A great fun course... go give it a shot. Bring a good strong sidearm with you as well.
The local news has recently reported a man was killed in the bathrooms on this course. Obviously this brings the issue of park safety up and should be taken into account when considering a round.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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