Long and Tough!!
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course is built through a forest of smallish Live Oaks. The trees are closely spaced with thick crowns and will pluck your disc out of the air every time. You won't be throwing through the tops of these guys.
The Gold Course at Live Oak Park is designed as a championship caliber course, so it can be equal parts challenging, fun and frustrating. The course places a premium on accurate driving, with thick rough that will punish you.
A great variety of hole lengths, ranging from 222' out to 785'. There are nine Par 4 holes along with a single Par 5. All require an accurate drive to a landing area in the fairway, and then a second drive on a different line to the pin. No eagles or cheap birdies on these holes!
Fairways are narrow and most include turns ranging from gentle bends to sharper doglegs. There is a fair mix of left and right turns, and plenty of low-headroom issues as well. Many of the holes can be approached either forehand or backhand, with overhands and rollers being possible as well.
Getting off of the fairway will put you into some thick rough. Your escape shot may be to simply return to the fairway, as forward progress is often blocked. Getting greedy will just land you in the rough on the opposite side of the fairway, with strokes adding up quickly on a few holes.
Hole 14 is the monster Par 5 at 785. The fairways are narrow with several bends and twists, so you'll need 3 or 4 accurate "drives" to get a look at the basket.
Holes 17 and 18 give you a reprieve from the trees and allow you to air it out as you finish the round.
Good concrete teepads and Innova baskets. Excellent Houck signs with distance and par, and an accurate hole diagram. Given the length of the holes and the many blind drives, having the diagram gives you useful information about where you should be headed.
Cons: The Texas coast it flat. This course is flat. No elevation at all. Although these is a small drainage canal running though the course, there is not really any water in play. The Hole 18 basket is set near a pond, which is easily avoided.
There is a fine line between challenge and frustration, and this course isn't for everyone. You will get knocked off into the rough and end up spending some time hunting for your discs. The rough is thick and tall, and often prickly.
A few of the very nice tee signs were missing or damaged.
Other Thoughts: There are plenty of mosquitoes here. Consider long pants/shirt and repellent.
This is a long course that doesn't return to the parking area until the very end. And this area is hot and humid much of the year. So carry plenty of water.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 4 Not
It's a Fizziness in my ear
Pros: Personal rank: 106
This course has it's "Hardest in the state" claim for a reason. Long tight fairways will require accuracy before distance, poor shots will be punished by thick rough making recovery difficult.
Live Oak Gold makes my favorites list for being a stand out challenge, it takes it a step beyond any other course in the area and remains one of the most challenging courses I've played.
If you're looking for a grueling butt kicking, I recommend this course, paired with the much mellower red course it's well worth coming out of the way for a day of disc golf in Ingleside.
Other Thoughts: After playing 1000 courses, I'm excited to share my opinion on some of my favorites. My top 100+ list can be found on my blog, my favorites list is at 110 of 1020 as of writing this review. Of all courses played, the top 1.5% receive a rating of 5, down to 6% is a 4.5, and 15% is a 4.0 creating a bell curve distribution. I apologize that my reviews are not as detailed as they have been previously. I have included the details as to why this course stands out to the best that my memory serves.
My personal criteria is very subjective, a gut feeling:
~Physical beauty stands out, both scenery and the beauty of each hole.
~Amenities don't mean much to me, it doesn't much matter if there's benches, concrete tee pads, or garbage cans.
~Technical design - How well designed are the fairways/airways and landing areas? Are there unique holes that stand out? Variety of holes - distances, shapes, elevation, tree density, rough thickness. Pars 4 and 5?
~I love extreme/adventure golf. Rugged and secluded courses stand out more than park style courses. In general I prefer more technical over more open.
~Local Scene. If I was involved in a tournament or league or met up with some locals and played the course multiple times I appreciate different aspects of a course.
Thank you, enjoy my reviews and if you don't find this information helpful, please let me know what I can do to improve.
5 of 9 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 3 Not
What would you do for a Klondike bar?
Pros: The community stepped up and paid for a Championship course and they got one.
Bring out your bag of tricks while you blast your way through the sandy par 4's and treacherous par 3's. Chase the golden bands of glory with every birdie attempt on this mine field of a course. This course will leave your finger nails aching to be trimmed for their next round of golf. Hurry up and schedule your next road trip to happy, sunny Ingleside. The weather is and so should you.
Cons: I didn't find a pot of gold or a Dive bar at the end of this epic 18 hole masterpiece.
Other Thoughts: Bring 76 ounces of H20.
7 of 10 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
I'm starting to love Live Oaks
Pros: 1) Tee posts are visible and the teesigns have hole #, Map, and distance, all the critical information needed for good teesigns.
2) Very challenging and it makes no apologies, hence the name GOLD. The Red course is more for the beginners, the GOLD is not!
3) Great design using the property very well. It incorporates all sorts of different areas of the park into the design. There is a major drainageway that gets used multiple times and in different ways which really makes for some interesting holes. Most of the course has been carved through heavy woods with lots of underbrush. Most of this brush has been pushed out of the way to remain out of pla as much as possible, but there are a couple times you might end up in some cutup debris and make it tough to find your disc.
4) Nice concrete tee pads in great shape allowing for optimum teeing conditions.
5) I get a lot of enjoyment trying to care my way around corners and through these tight tunnel fairways. Even if I don't completely execute the shot perfectly, it is fun to watch and would be enough to make me come back.
6) Very nice mix of shots on this course. You need to work the disc both directions and also straight at times. You don't have any elevation to deal with but you do need to think about the height of some shots because of the lower ceilings at times instead of just airing it out.
7) Nice variety of holes here because there is some water in play, both streams and a pond, there is tight technical woods, there are true tunnel shots, and then there are a couple open bomber holes. Rollers are taken out of play because of what looks like unmowed turf on those open holes really forcing long throws through the air (thats not good or bad, just worth mentioning).
8) Bathrooms are available by the Red course and garbage cans are available by both courses.
9) The sands soil in spots is really an interesting aspect of the game that I have only seen in Florida and Texas. The sandy soils plays very differently than compacted soil. I am sure that the sand drains well which would be a plus in wet weather, plus any of the holes going through the woods have lots of woodchips and grindings on the ground to help reduce the mud factor.
10) I really enjoy having holes with legitimate par 4 and par 5 holes. These holes ar enot only tight but they are long requiring accuracy the entire way. Accuracy here is the priority rather than distance.
11) Nice discatchers in great shape. I love the yellow band on wooded courses like this, it makes it so mcuh easier to find where you are supposed to be headed.
Cons: 1) There is way more underbrush on this course than the red, thus helping to increase the challenge, but also increasing the frustration factor.
2) Some luck is needed from time to time. That will be the case on all courses at some point or another, but I think that some more defined lines could have been created to be a little more fair. Perhaps this was by intent to really push the limits of what people are willing to go for in terms of risk/reward.
3) Lots of stumps are visible and in the way to make you trip. It is clear a lot of clear cutting was done to make this course what it is. It is a fact of life, I guess I just wish that when this is done that more time is spent grading and smoothing the fairways to avoid the tripping hazard.
4) Navigation signs woul dbe really helpful from time to time on certain holes. It is tough to find where you are going in a few spots, just keep your eyes peeled for the next tee sign, but a couple of simple small signs would reduce this issue.
5) Be careful when walking to the next tee because there are a couple times where you enter the next fairway before getting to the tee meaning you could step out into a fairway and get a disc in the ear because the people on the tee might not see you. I only saw it with very few leaves on trees and shrubs etc. so I am unsure of how protected those places will look in season with full foliage.
Other Thoughts: I really enjoyed the Red course which I played the day before I played here, and I originally didn't think I would get to play it, but my wife wanted to come back here to do some bird watching in the morning so I got a chance to play both Gold and Red and am glad I did. I like both courses a lot, but the GOLD I like because of the challenge it presents. I overlooked a lot of the issues this course has because it is simply a great challenge. I think a lot more could have been done with cleanup after the initial design and cutting work was done. This course feels a lot newer and it is actually only 2 years old at this point, so i am sure it will get itself worked out over time. The red course has have almost 20 years to get played in and it is noticable. I am giving this course a 4 which is also what i gave the Red course, but I feel like this is a much better course long term because of the constant challenge it presents. I like shorter fun courses from time to time, but I would ultimately prefer the challenging course everytime.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Tough But Awesome!
Pros: First off...best disc couse in all south texas, might be one of the hardest as well. Great variations of trees and other shot barriers. Very "Outdoorsie" course ( no surrounding homes) Wild Javelinas all around. just saw some today!
Cons: Hard Course!! must be fairly skilled to avoid every tree thats in the fairways! Play with someone who has played it or u can miss tee boxes. Sharp rose bushes and texas Brush. Narrow Fairways between trees.
Other Thoughts: Friendly people everywhere out in Inglside. A MUST for South Texas!
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Welcome to The Fireswamp!
Pros: The challenge. This course is very long and it plays differently every time because of ricochets off trees and the lack of predictable skips. There are many holes where two players' discs can land 5 feet apart in the middle of the fairway, but the tree placements will dictate totally different shots for those two players. Almost every hole requires a route or distance decision on the tee that will govern how the rest of the shots will be played. There are very few holes where every player on the card will attempt the same throw off the tee. Having said that, when you go off the fairway (and that will happen to everyone multiple times), how you recover will determine if you have a bad hole or a disaster on your hands.
Variety. Every hole has its own personality. No short hole looks like the last short hole, but all of them have extreme basket protection. The long holes also offer variations, with some very tight fairways and some opportunities for open shots. There are many places where overhand throws are impossible, but some openings for them. The holes are also arranged well. For example, the 785' par 5 hole is followed by a straight 260' ace run (if you hit a tight gap, of course).
The Set-up. The tee pads and the baskets are great. The signs are on order and will be a big help in finding your way.
Cons: The course is not "beginner-friendly" unless said beginner is very patient and has plastic to lose.
It is HOT. Usually you have either shade or a breeze, but not both at the same time, so it is survivable for those who will carry plenty of water. Walking this far in the sand while carrying a bag will wear you out and you are likely to emerge with some scratches. Bandaids and Neosporin are a good idea.
Other Thoughts: The sand and uneven terrain prevent most skips and rollers. That is important to keep in mind, but it may be a Pro for some and a Con for others.
I started calling this course "the Fireswamp" because everyone who walks out of it after 18 holes seems to look like Westley and Buttercup emerging from that forest in "The Princess Bride." Rodents of Unusual Size? I don't think they exist.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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