7 Helpful / 1 Not
Billy Goat Ranch in a good way
Pros: 1) This property is incredible. It is so diverse on terrain. Basically there are two or three massive ravines that you throw across, up, down, through, around, over. They are large dropoffs from top to bottom and the actual ravine below the big hills are about 6-10' deep. There is very little water in them (although I played in the middle of the August drought, but it also was just a few weeks from massive Iowa flooding, so I am sure at that time they were flowing rapidly. These ravines make this course what it is.
2) Garbage is available on some holes but I can see emptying the garbage to be a tough process for some of the deeper holes in the woods.
3) Tee signs are temporary laminated photos. I like the way they were setup in that the basket is photoshopped into the picture showing your line. It shows different vantage points on some of the pictures to help you decipher where the basket it. I am sure if they incorporate those into permanent signs that would be phenomonal. Hole and distance are listed, but I did run across a few that didnt account for alternate basket distances.
4) Mach baskets in good shape with the number plate facing the tee which is always appreciated in a tight wooded course like this where you struggle to find the baskets.
5) Flag on the #2 basket is visible from the tee because of the tree laying across the fairway blocking the view. This could be helpful on more baskets or at the very least some bright paint to help find the baskets.
6) Challenge at every turn! There are no weak holes here and there is a good variety of shot types and hole types. I always appreciate a course that challenges me in a fair way.
7) Bridges are pretty well built. Some of the stairways are well done, some are a little shoddy, but overall for the terrain the amenities for navigation are good enough.
8) Large concrete teepads are a plus. I was a little surprised to see them all the way through the course because I can only imagine how difficult it was to get them in there. Thanks for the hard work whoever did it!
9) Fairways are well defined despite the very dense forest you play through. There are even some clearings and grassy fairways int he middle of these woods which look to me like they were cleared and planted, but I am not sure. This is a really cool feeling to play down a grassy fairways surrounded on both sides by tight dense hardwood forest.
10) 4 basket practice area located in between Camden I and II. Great feature!
11) Navigational arrows help you get through the course. There are a lot of areas that would be confusing if you didn't know the course, especially when alternate baskets are 200+ feet in between the two baskets.
12) An 8 hole loop and a 10 holes loop allow for a half round for some. I luckily played early in the morning but it was literally 90+ at 9:30 when I played. I had already played West Lake and Camden I so I was getting hot and tired. I had planned on like 7 courses on this day but had to go back to the hotel after the first three courses (ending at Camden II) to take in the AC and rest because this course had me feeling like a hot sweaty irritated Billy goat.
Cons: 1) This course is one of the least beginner friendly courses I have ever played. Lost discs, broken ankles, heart attacks, are all possible here. This course is not for the faint of heart or if you don't really love disc golf you might want to skip this course! This is a negative for these people but in the end it makes it awesome to me.
2) Hit one of those trees lining the fairway and you are bound to end up in the bottom of the ravine. You are able to get down to your disc if this does happen but it is tough especially when it is wet. I ended up in the ravine 2 or 3 times int he entire round. It didnt bother me that I had to crawl down there, but it would slow people down, and would frustrate the weak hearted.
3) I love a challenge, but there were not many tight technical birdie holes. You still have to throw long discs. You can choose controlled midranges over drivers, but ti is hard to play the whole course with that mindset, you want to be able to try and make some good drives for birdies.
Other Thoughts: What a great property, good amenities, a constant challenge, but always fair fairways. It has it all. The elevation changes, the ravines, the tight wooded holes, risk/reward shots all over the place. It is simply a great course that is well done. It is a great design and use of the property, there is planty of diversity, I jut wish there were some shorter technical holes. It just seems like it is all long and requires a lot of drivers and less controlled mid-ranges unless you consider how often you will only get half the distance you want on any shot because of hitting a tree. I love it and I will be back for sure. I just should do it when it isn't 90" and not when I plan on playing 20 courses in 3 days!
This course is getting a 4, but it is one of my top 4 disc courses. It is so close to a 4.5 I just think it needs a little more clearing, maybe a way to trim the grass from time to time on those wooded grassy fairways. There also would need to be improvements to access to the ravine as well as improved stairways. It isn't a huge deal but those are the differences that take a course from good to great. Based solely on the disc golf I love it, but a few more improvements would be helpful. I like the temporary signs and look forward to a permanent sign with all pertinent information.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Fantastical, on its way to the top!!
Pros: Elevation, lots and lots of elevation changes. Ginormous tee pads. Bridge crossings over creeks. Lots and lots of trees. Though this was a heavily wooded course, it had prominent fairways on some holes and they seemed to be maintained fairly well. There are practice baskets that are shared between both Camden 1 and 2. Plenty of trash cans. Very secluded feeling while on course, except for the occasional air traffic from the nearby airport. Great effort by designers on the bridges and steps to help navigate through course, I can't emphasize this enough. Course flow is actually pretty good, but the Next Tee Signs help tremendously on a course this heavily wooded. Multiple blind pins add to difficulty. What a way to start a course, Hole 1 truly sets the tone and lets you know this course is not to be messed with. This hole had a tight tree lined fairway with a deep ravine to add to the pucker factor, the pin is sitting there just teasing you. I also like the fact that after hole 9, you were next to the parking lot and could refill on water, use the porta-potties, or end your round early if need be.
Cons: Not many cons for me. Signing would be nice, the picture signs are nice to get you by, and on a couple of holes they were needed as a visual reference with their multiple pictures, but permanent signs would be great. Rough is really rough, would be helpful to bring a spotter for those occasional throws you wish you could have back. Even though some of the holes had nicely distinguished fairways, some of them didn't, keeping the rough out of the fairways would push this park over the top.
Other Thoughts: All the elevation changes made me really take my time. I had to stop and catch my breath a few times on some of the steep hills, not a big deal, just worth noting. Most wooded courses I have played have shorter holes that you would use a midrange or a putter on, NOT HERE!! Several of long holes that will test you to keep your drivers in the fairway. I don't know the actual distances on the holes, but I remember some of them being 300' - 500', IN THROUGH THE WOODS!! Awesome! You will need to bring everything you've got in your arsenal of throws for this course, back hand, forehand, anny's, tommy's, the works. There are lots of great holes on this course, but besides hole 1 which I already mentioned, I liked 4, 7, and 13. 4 is a brutal downhill hole over a creek, then takes a sharp right turn and another couple hundred feet to the pin along the creek. 7 is a very steep uphill with trees everywhere. 13 really let's you air it out. Starting on top of the hill, you throw within the trees and bushes on the tee, to a very large open grassy field. The elevation change is huge here and your disc just floats forever, a good shot here will be near the opening that brings you back into the woods. Also, I got my first Ace on hole 12, so I will always have a bond with this course.
This course is not a family friendly. On occasion, my kids and wife come with me to walk the trails of courses like this. I think this one would be pretty tough on them and I don't think I would let them come (wouldn't want to listen to the whining from the younger ones during play). I lost a disc on this course, and one of the locals called me said that he found it. I didn't have a chance to get it from him for several months and didn't call him back for a while. He called me back to make sure I didn't lose his #. Thanks Frank!! Great locals, another reason to play this course. During play, I found myself thinking and getting excited about the next hole - what could they think of next, what are they going to throw at me now, how are they going to challenge me on the next one. Wow, can't wait to play again!! I wanted to give 4.5 stars, but couldn't do it without permanent tee signs.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Heavily wooded with excellent usage of elevation, concrete tees, as well as pictures of hole locations for all holes except 17, great course a must play, can't wait to get on it again, after the first 8, or 9 your choice if its been too much for that day, they are near the parking lot
Cons: If the course is wet BE CAREFUL ITS TREACHEROUS!, the climbing and descending of hills becomes very dangerous with wet conditions, some blind throws so prepare a spotter
As far as bathroom and water facilities well there are porta potties and thats about it, only at the parking lot,
no breeze to help you stay cool so bring lots of water with, you
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 5 Not
Huge potential, almost there
Pros: The course plays in a hilly forested area in a large park, and the course doesn't share the land with any other uses which adds to the feeling of seclusion. The hills are used very well in the design to makke you play up and down hills and across valleys, with roll away pin positions to add trouble late in the hole. All the holes have tree lined fairways, and most have low ceilings, but very few felt so tight that it was luck to get down the fairway. It was a great risk/reward course though, because the further you try to get down the long fairways, the more chance you have of punishment from the thick rough.
You will need lots of different shots to score well here, with a great balance of left and right turning holes, and very few straightforward and easy holes. There are some great legitimate par 4 holes that will make you work for par, a birdie 3 feels great, and a poor drive or second shot can easily land you a 5 or worse. The creeks running through the property come into play on several holes adding an ob possibility but not one where you're going to lose your disc permanently.
The flow of the course is very good, with signs marking the way when it's not really obvious how to get to the next hole. The concrete tees are huge and brand new with great texture for grip even when wet. An enormous amount of work has gone into making steps and bridges up and down the ravines and over the creeks, so even when the ground is a little muddy it's not that tough to get down to a disc that ended up at the bottom.
Cons: Though navigation between holes is well marked and easy to follow, some signage work needs done for the holes themselves. There were some picture signs up on some holes, but they weren't very clear and didn't make it any easier to figure out the hole standing on the tee. There are lots of long holes in the woods here, and nearly all of them have elevation, so it makes for a long round when you have to walk ahead to scout every hole. Also, some holes that did have signs were not in the pin positions indicated on those signs adding to the confusion.
Some of the fairways need some work still, as this is a relatively new course. Some debris needs cleared, and there are places where small stumps etc. are still there to trip you up. Both of the major cons here are temporary though, as it seems like a lot of work is going into the course, hopefully these issues are resolved soon and I can update my review and rating.
Other Thoughts: The design and terrain of this course are fantastic, and make for some awesome throwing with great elevation and a tough but fair layout that will test every part of your game. There are some issues that need some work, but they are definitely fixable, and when they are taken care of this course is easily at least a 4 disc rated course.
Beginners will find this course very difficult and long, with lots of punishing rough waiting to snag errant drives. More experienced players will find the course challenging with lots of variety and unique holes, this is great wooded golf fi you like to be tested.
This course is definitely a destination if you visit the disc golf hot spot here in the quad cities, with two different but fun courses and the best practice area I've seen all in the same park.
11 of 16 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 9 Not
Tight and challenging course
Pros: This is a new course. It is cut out of a heavily forested area just across from Camden I. Of course, the pads and tees are nice and new. Layout is innovative and challenging.
Cons: A new course, so not many pathways are cut out yet. That also means not a lot of shot pathways have been cut out either. Can be treacherous when muddy. Also can be confusing if you don't carefully follow signs/paths. Some holes can really test your patience. Can be very overgrown in the middle of summer.
Other Thoughts: Overall this course is a real chore to play. However, you have to give it the respect it deserves. It is a very closed and wooded course, which can make for a challenging and frustrating round. I would recommend playing Camden I if you are short on patience or time.
1 of 10 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 3 Not
GREAT Job Quad City Disc Golf ! ! !
Pros: FANTASTIC course. Tight fairways, great use of elevation, creek with pretty deep ravine will make you think twice about the disc you have in your hand, good mix of holes. LOVE the photo tee signs, If only someone would stop ripping them down.
Cons: Only the navigation really (missing signs)...Slippery-When-Wet. Played a couple days after a good rain. Plenty of mud to go around
Other Thoughts: Kudos to Quad City Disc Golf for all of the hard work they have done. Quad City Disc Golf has gone the distance to put in a lot of GREAT courses. Keep up the fantastic work...
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 2 Not
Camden II is so SWEET
Pros: This review is coming from a professional player who loves the most difficult challenges.
Camden 2 is located on the East side of the property. The course plays entirely in heavy woods. There are some excellent elevation changes and nasty ravines. A small creek runs through the ravine and comes into play on many holes. This course is a pretty good hike so be careful. Several bridges were constructed across the ravines and they are very impressive. Many staircases and walking paths have been created as well.
There is a good sized practice area off the parking lot. There are 4 practice baskets.
This is a Championship Level wooded course. It is one of a kind in Illinois. It will challenge the best players in the world. There is a wide variety with multiple pins. Several par 4's/5's add difficulty. If each pin is in the hardest location this course is down right nasty!
They have done a great job of cleaning up many holes. The landing zones are wider and the rough isn't quite as nasty. It has become more player friendly.
Great use of elevation.
The concrete tees are awesome. They are 10X10 feet. I have never seen a course with anything like them. Depending on where you stand on the tee pad it changes the line of the hole dramatically.
Navigation has improved tremendously. There are next tee signs on every hole. They are white with a red hole # painted on them. They are placed high in easy to see areas.
Brand new Mach 3 baskets.
Cons: This course lacks tee signs. With them I might push my review to a 5.
*This course is designed for Adv/Pro calibur players or those who can control a disc. Staying in the fairways is a must. You also need to be in decent physical shape to hike up and down and get into and out of some difficult places.*
This course is still a work in progress. I am amazed with what has been accomplished since I last visited 2 years ago. It just keeps getting better.
Both courses compliement each other nicely with Camden 2 being very challenging.
The Quad Cities has some very good disc golf. Plan a vacation here and play as many course as you can. You will not be disappointed.
Check out my Illinois Top 10.
15 of 17 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
another qca gem
Pros: See hognosesucker's review. I don't really have a lot to add to this.
One thing I will add; there are some deuce opportunites here. Many of the very top level courses have such tough holes; hole after hole, that par is the best you can achieve on all pins. Here, they actually give you a chance to send your score in the correct direction every once in a while.
On the other hand; there are some holes where a four is a good score. A few of these rank up there with some of the best holes I've ever seen.
Therefore, this balances out as a great par course. i.e. You earn your fours in some places; and have a chance to get a few twos as well.
Cons: Permanent tee signs still needed. You may have to find your way a couple of times here. There are a couple of places were holes are near each other. Not in terms of play; but in terms of discovering which direction you need to go.
Other Thoughts: I have noted this on the West Lake review; but, will say it again; this area is one of the best quality disc areas I've ever seen. West Lake is one of the best/toughest courses I've ever played. Camden 2 is nearly as good; without all the water. Devil's Glen is an awesome nine. Middle Park is a very good 18. Butterworth is as good as a nine gets. Prospect is a good course. Eagle River is top notch. Longview is one of their earliest; and though not played much any more (and map is needed for that one); is a great example of an early "fall away green" course. There are more courses here, believe it or not! i.e. Eastern (which is a rip and chuck course with some water involved) is the busiest of all of the courses. Come to the Quad Cities to play; you will be thrilled you did. Camden 2 is a top notch course!!!
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 1 Not
Addition of this course makes the Camden complex a must-play in IL
Pros: -Huge concrete tee pads (8x8 I think)
-HEAVILY wooded (17 of 18 play in woods)
-Great use of elevation: this course plays across two huge ravines, about 2/3 of the holes utilize the elevation changes
-Great variety of shots-many straight drives, many big anhyzers, a few slight and big hyzers (rhbh), possibles holes where overhand shots and even grenades can be utilized effectively.
-some if not all holes have two pin placements/hole-I've played several times and have seen several holes in different positions
-although there was a big storm a few years ago that affected the original design, many of the trees were left to add unique structures/obstacles on the hole. for instance on hole 6 or 7 which is a big dogleg left, a massive tree fell down right at the turn, forcing you to throw up to it, but not get too close as it will limit your next shot...or try to go over it, number two has a unique tree fall also, I call it the whale hole, as the tree blocking the hole looks like a whale.
-OB on a few holes especially after rain, the creek comes into effect on maybe half the holes
-good mix of long and short holes-some of the long holes are sick, but the short holes can be tough also because of the semi-tight, but fair fairways.
-AWESOME bridges over the creek
-Waste baskets on almost every hole
-Another good, time tested 18 on the other side of the road is always nice.
-Course is a favorite of the local club so there are always opportunities to play with people who know the course.
-UPDATE10/2010: course now has alt pins (sometimes 3 placements) on vast majority of holes ( didnt see alt pins for 13 or 16 ) and pins have been moved to the new placements which are mostly short pins
Cons: -Since I played last in May still no signage, just interesting slabs of wood with different ways of denoting the number of hole (numbers dominoe like slabs etc.) UPDATE 10/10 still temporary tee signs
-Along with that there are no distances on the "signs" which I'm guessing will be fixed before the Women's Championships (Sept. 17-19). But for now it can be hard even to figure out in which direction to throw
-The park in general has fairly poor facilities-portajohn, possibly no water fountains on either course definitely not on this one. There is a nice pavillion with electric at the parking lot though.
-When the course is wet, it is dangerous. Being in the forest, there is not a lot of ground cover on the fairways (the rough is a different story) and with all the elevation change, climbing and decending the hills can be dangerous, also the paths btwn holes can be sloppy and treacherous.
-Although somewhat marked, navigation between holes can be confusing for first-timers, but btwn hole paths are well beaten in for the most part. UPDATE 10/10 I think navigation is intentionally tricky to keep the disrespectful dgers away. This is a positive thing though IMO
-Many blind shots so bring a spotter or two. UPDATE 10/10: short pins erase a lot of the blind shot issues here.
-Along with the previous con, play with another person the first few times, as the rough is pretty nasty there
-Overall, in my mind, for the quality of shots you'll be throwing, the cons are very minor.
Overall, this course is awesome, and with time it can only get better. In a few years, I can imagine most of the cons being erased. It's still very young (2008?). I would recommend getting together with a local the first time you play for the reasons above and you'll have a great round of smooth golf. I'm guessing you can go post up at the Iowa DG forum (www.iowadg.com
) or the qcdg club site (www.qcdiscgolfclub.com
) to meet up with someone. I was a member of the club years ago and the vast majority of club folks are great people. Also here is a link to the course layout (http://www.qcdiscgolfclub.com...amdentwo.php)
just pull the mouse over the arial map and it shows the layout. There are also some youtube videos on that page. I don't know if there are any printable maps anywhere yet.
Overall this course is probably in the top five in Illinois. And in the quad city area it's a toss up btwn this and west lake ( http://www.dgcoursereview.com...php?id=2418).
A must play while in the qca
UPDATE Sept. 2009
Played there the weekend after the Women's DG Championships and the course is looking great! New additions include steps (made of 4x4 posts) in many locations to traverse dangerous spots, and temporary tee signs that have distance and photos of the holes to help point you in the right direction. The rough is still pretty rough though, but the fairways are still clean and tight!
15 of 16 people found this review helpful.
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