7 Helpful / 0 Not
Ball Golf style course done well
Pros: I want to preface this review by stating that this course is atypical of NC courses. It's mostly open in a park-style setting. An impeccably manicured lawn dotted with great, old pines. This is the best ball golf style DG course I've ever played, save for Winthrop Gold layout (I'd personally would rather play here more often than not).
The tees and signage are immaculate. The people that built them are well-deserving of sexual favors. Seriously, these concrete tees were plucked from my trees and installed here. Not only do they function superbly but just look nice. Many holes have separate tees for red or blue and these are easy to find and differentiate from afar thanks to the posts being painted red or blue accordingly and the paths to the tees from the holes being mowed as short as the fairways. The surrounding 'rough' is meadow type fare that really frames the fairways. It's not very tall and difficult but probably not impossible to lose a disc in.
The course is mostly open. This will irk many a NC golfer that associates high-level disc golf with the tight wooded courses of Charlotte. I'm generally of that ilk but I appreciate variety and to me this course is a great example of an open course done properly. It has good length and use of what elevation there is. Mandos here and there help force certain lines to break up the monotony of just ripping hard without fear of consequences. The course itself is mostly separated from other park users so you don't have those distractions.
Cons: I wish the course used mandos a little bit more to force certain lines because this course does suffer a lot from 'straightness' and also to persuade throws away from other tees/golfers.
Big arms are going to find this course nonchalant and easy, probably pitch and putt variety. If the rough could somehow be more punishing or maybe even OB, that would greatly boost the challenge of the course for advanced and better players. Not sure how you'd make it more punishing because I rather enjoy finding my errant throws amidst a sea of bluebells. Maybe strategic planting of bushy trees here and there would help.
Maybe more trash cans?
Other Thoughts: I'm bullish about this course. Sometimes it's nice to get out of the tight woods and air discs out. Courses like this are great for those without fields to practice in b/c it is really difficult to improve your form when you're worried about missing that tight gap between the trees. Tees, signs, flow, navigation, etc this course hits it out of the park. I'd be ecstatic if the guys that put these tees down would come to my local courses and do the same.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: This is a very well maintained course, with excellent tee pads, informative signs (with additional pro tips and facts about the course), and mowed grass.
Although it is set in a large multi-use park, the course makes use of it's own plot of land so that there is no threat of interference from other park users.
The design does well to make use of what it has. Limited elevation is used to create a couple fun elevated tee shots. The trees are used to help force some different lines.
Cons: The landscape leaves a lot to be desired here. While the course does make use of a little bit of elevation, the majority of the course is flat. The trees help force some lines, but there is very little punishment for missing a line. The lack of any sort of undergrowth means that nearly every throw will land in grass with a clean stance and a nice recovery line towards the basket.
Other Thoughts: To me, Catawba meadows defines the "typical" course. It is well-kept, and certainly a lot of fun to play. But without any real identity or wow-factor, it's pretty forgettable.
If you're in the area and looking for a place to play, you will not be disappointed, but it's not a course I would go out of my way to play.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Awesome course in a NICE park.
Pros: I have been playing this course alot in the last 2-3 months. I just wish I had found it sooner.
CM is laid out in a very nice, well kept, park. That being said, the course is also very well kept, they even have brooms hanging on some tee signs to brush off the teepads if needed. Speaking of the teepads, they are quite possibly the NICEST I have ever teed off of. They give you plenty of runup, are flat as they should be, and some have retaining walls where needed.
The course itself is a mostly open, field type course with old growth trees and some elevation for that extra challenge. I did just say that it is a mostly open course but there are trees to hit if you throw an errant shot and a creek that runs behind hole 2 and through holes 3, 17, and 18 that can come into play also. New tee signs have been put up recently which are a nice addition. If you are on the fence about going out of the way to play this course, DO IT! Its well worth the trip.
Cons: The only con I can think of is there are no restrooms once you leave hole 1 so you better handle that before you head out.
Other Thoughts: This course is like a walk in the park because, well, it really is.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: First I feel it important to say this is my home course, I'm currently the local club president, and personally poured every tee pad with help from other club members. It has been a joy watching our little club & course grow. With the city's support and a grant from Blue Ridge Parkway Foundations Kids in Parks program a impressive renovation has recently been concluded. Upgrades/improvements include trapezoid shaped tee pads, with a launch point six feet wide tapering out to twelve feet wide at the rear and twelve feet of run up. Addition of benches and retaining walls around the tee pads that required them also make great seats as well. Kiosk located between am/pro #1 tee pads houses top notch scorecards with a map of the course & score card on one side & pictures of indigenous fauna and flora on the other.
On to the course review, It's very open, it's where I learned, so imagine my surprise when I played a wooded course. Still all in all a great place to "drive for show". Oh, I still hit these trees too. I've either seen or heard of aces on 1,2,3,9,11,14,16 & 18 so it can be done. Course & club host several charity tourney's each year and a PDGA "C" tier event is currently being held each year also. City planted some trees last year which will come into play as they grow & fill out. Things are looking up at Catawba Meadows!
Cons: Currently no bathroom once you have begun your round & left parking lot area, however it has been tossed around by city Parks & Recreation to add a restroom.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Catawba Meadows is a jewel of a course that is spread out over a beautiful peice of geography, green grass and large trees. It plays very casual, little to no elevation, flows nicely from one hole to the next.....and no leaves to lose your discs. The course has freshly paved tee pads that are GIGANTIC and spectacular, quite possibly the best I've ever seen! Better pads then any Charlotte course. This course allows you to comfortably break out your distance drivers and send hyper bombs on a lot of holes, no fear of losing a disc anywhere on this course except on hole 2 and 17.
Cons: There are only a few cons, all fairly minor. the first is about the lack of signage/direction. Fortunately I found some locals to help guide me but I can imagine this course would be confusing at times. I'm used to playing in the woods so I typically look for a worn path, but CM is one giant field with trees and baskets. Also, there are almost no benches and no restrooms anywhere on/around the course.
Other Thoughts: I would highly recommend taking the time to go out of your way to play this course. It was refreshing and unique, look forward to playing again soon.
5 of 9 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Very nice course to step back and throw it hard! It's a lot of fun to work on your distance and technique, while still having trees to consider when picking your lines. Holes 4 - 18 are field with tree holes. The grass was freshly mowed when I played, making for ease when looking for my discs. Course is well laid out. Very nice, flat course! Reach back and bomb it!
Cons: Would love to see true tee pads vs. ground and markers. Markings were sometime difficult to find the first go through
Other Thoughts: I happened on this course by chance while planning a zip line tour for my kids. The park, itself, is a ton of fun, if you have kids. And, if your kids like to play disc golf, Catawba Meadows is a gold mine.
2 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Catawba Meadows Review
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: My background on this course: This is my home course, which I have played 200+ times.
-Baskets: The baskets are Innova Discatcher Pros. They are very visible and in great shape.
-Tees: The tee pads are gigantic trapezoid concrete slabs. With run-ups perhaps a bit more important on this lengthy course, the size of these pads is a bonus. These tees were brand new as of October 2012. They were funded by the city and installed by the local club. Many of them have retaining walls that can serve as a bench.
-Signage: Each teeing area has a painted post (red for amateur, blue for pro, both for shared) with a sign attached to it. The signs have a nature trail theme with information about various topics and have nice maps of each hole.
-Maintenance: The course is pretty well maintained and is mowed on a reasonable schedule, especially given the size of the area to be mowed. Often times you will see defined fairways mowed, which frames the holes in an aesthetically pleasing manner. Efforts have been made to eradicate poison plants throughout most of the course. The Parks & Rec department has shown dedication in keeping the course in playable shape.
-Local Support: There is a local disc golf club who helps maintain the course as well. They assist in clearing the course of debris after storms and with construction and general maintenance projects on the course.
-Design: The course has a lot of wide open space, but almost every tee shot has some sort of obstacle to navigate and the course will often leave you with the feeling that you played a slightly more wooded course than it would have seemed upon first glance. In other words, the designer did an exceptional job in utilizing the property available to him. That said, the massive amount of trees that have fallen in recent years have weakened that original design.
-Tee Selection: Having amateur tees helps make the course a bit more beginner friendly, as the pro tees heavily favor players who can consistently throw over 300 feet. I have observed a tremendous amount of beginners playing the course off of the red tees, so this is a positive aspect in growing the sport in this area.
-Alternate Pins: A substantial number of alternate pins have been added in recent years by the local club, largely in response to the loss of dozens of trees on the course. The local club changes the pin positions periodically, which helps to break up the monotony of playing the same shots over and over for the local players.
-Other Amenities: The course is located in one of the nicest parks in the region. There are three massive shelters right next to the first hole, in fact one of the shelters falls right between the practice basket and first tees and is an ideal place for staging tournaments. There's also a nice bathroom near the parking area / playground. The practice basket itself is a nice green rimmed Discatcher located in the most logical location it could have been placed; out of the way of other people in the park, but not too far from the first tees. There is also a huge kiosk with course information and (sometimes) fantastic scorecards. The nearby office for The Beanstalk Journey zipline course has a small assortment of discs for sell, but it is only open intermittently, mostly on the weekends. Lost discs are often turned in / kept there as well. The course itself contains 4 benches on Holes 4/17, 8, 12, and 16 and a trash can on Hole 9.
-Navigation: While there is a nice map of the course located on DGCR, the course can still be a bit difficult to navigate for first time players. The angled tee pads should get you pointed in the right direction toward the baskets, and mowing lines have helped, but occasionally it can be difficult to find the next tee correctly.
-Nature: The area around 17 tee / 4 tee / 16 basket floods even after moderate rainfall and sometimes the basket on 16 cannot be reached without getting your shoes wet. Consequently, mosquitoes are abundant here. Consistent mowing has eliminated a lot of the poison oak in the open spaces of the course, but it still thrives on the occasional tree and in the brushy areas along the stream. However, the biggest natural obstacle that the course faces is that it is "bleeding" trees. The grounds that the course was built on used to be a tree nursery, in which the state experimented on the flora, resulting in weakened trees that were never meant to survive for a full life span. New pins and new mandos have helped to keep the design interesting, but without tree replacement, the course will eventually be likened to an open field.
-Other Amenities: Since the course is a full 18 hole loop, you do not return to the bathrooms until the end of the round. Some people have mentioned this as a con. I would say it is a minor one, but there has been discussion about how and where to put some sort of bathroom in the middle of the course.
-Outside Interference: With this being a public park, you may occasionally find some non-disc golfers on the course. This happens most frequently around Hole 1, when people who rent the nearby shelters spill their activities over into the area around the practice basket and even into Hole 1 fairway. A couple of the new alternate pins have brought the greenway into play, so you will likely have to wait for walkers when the pins are in the alternate positions on Holes 10 and 11, although new signs have been installed to let walkers know they are entering the disc golf course area. It is worth noting that the course is usually closed for apx. a week leading up to and during the City's Bluegrass Festival. Visit this site to find out the dates: http://redwhiteandbluegrassfestival.com
Other Thoughts: Mandos: There are now 4 officially recognized and signed mandos on the course (a double on #11, one on #14 blue, one on #17 blue, and one on #18 blue), indicated by white arrows. Any blue arrows you see spray painted on the trees were temporary mandos that were added without permission and you are not required to play those. There are two yellow blocks installed into the ground denoting the drop zones for the mandos on 11 and 17, while the mandos on 14 and 18 require a re-tee.
Least Favorite Hole: Holes #13 and 15 feel both the most bland and most similar of any two holes on the course. Both have received new pin positions, but remain pretty ordinary.
Favorite Hole: I love hole #8. It is one of the few holes with a significant elevation change and has a beautifully framed, tee shot that opens into (more or less) a meadow, perhaps invoking the namesake of the course.
Outlook: The course has shown much improvement over the years and despite the loss of trees, its outlook is exceptional with the support of the city and local club. The primary focus moving forward needs to be on tree replacement. The club does have plans to add some more alt pins and even some structures on the course to make it more interesting, such as elevated baskets.
Most of the greatest courses in the world have an amazing balance of wooded to open and hilly to flat holes, among other things. Catawba Meadows will always be mostly flat and mostly open and that is the character of the course and that can't really be changed, consequently I feel that this aspect somewhat limits the maximum score that the course can achieve.
The course has experienced significant upgrades in the past several years and is approaching a level of quality that it is going to be hard pressed to move beyond within the scope of a public course. I do encourage previous reviewers to revisit this course and update your reviews.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Good location on scenic Morganton Greenway with bathroom and shower facilities and restaurants/bars within walking distance down the path past hole 10, easy to traverse, has 18 holes 11 holes with multiple tees (reds and blues), open fairway type course with intermittent pine trees, great for distance practice. One great advantage though is that the city has all hours access to the park (even bathrooms stay open at night) so glow golf can be done with the city's blessing, get in touch with a local for more info (we tried getting a night tourney together this summer but didn't have enough interest but still looking ahead, have charity tournaments in March and October that raise money and canned goods for the local food bank.
Cons: Course and club organizing are a work in progress and have struggled with many in the prime demographic of 18-35 are getting out of town due to economy, so there are only natural teepads and the course has only 1 trashcan after hole 9 and the only benches are near the holes close to the Greenway. Tried a couple of years ago to add extra mando's (can still see remnants on trees of blue arrows from tournaments) but people have called the city complaining about the two that were built in (11 and 17/long) much less new ones so the course is limited in terms of technical challenge. Also this park is used many times throughout the year for Boyscout events, concerts, etc. and the city lets them camp on the course so if your from out of town you may want to check with Morganton Parks and Rec to make sure there aren't any events going on so you don't waste a trip.
UPDATE: Due to a recent grant, we have been able to implement a series of upgrades, from the date of the Pumpkin Bowl on we have 6 x 12 trapezoid concrete pads with a kiosk, signs, and possibly more mandos and sleeves coming soon.
Other Thoughts: Overall, this park was a great step up from Bethel Park, and has potential, it just needs more involvement, the city is open to working with clubs and those looking to organize tournaments so while it's not perfect, there is definite potential here.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Simple, Rewarding course
Pros: Well marked tee boxes, family friendly environment, easy course to get the hang of, usually well kept fairways, nice catchers.
Cons: Very little terrain variation, natural tee boxes have the potential to be muddy, running track crosses the course at points (can hold up the game).
Other Thoughts: Overall a wonderfully simple course that is exactly as it appears, many long straight holes for you to practice your driving. Great course for newcomers to the sport, but it probably won't be very challenging for experienced players.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Practice Makes Perfect
Pros: Newly built, nice baskets, good for newcomers to the sport due to mostly open fairways, rarely have to wait, and easy to find.
Cons: Not much of a challenge (too open), no tee pads (muddy holes after a light rain), grass needs to be cut more often than not, and hole 16 can become a swamp after a descent rain.
Other Thoughts: This is a good course to practice on or to take new comers to the sport so that they can get use to it without losing their (or your) discs.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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