Underrated "other" Parkside course
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course is set in a mostly grassy, prairie type area of the campus. Its a little tricky to find the first time, but when heading north on G, take the east exit on the roundabout and park near the abandoned looking road heading east. This is basically the divider between the front 9 and back 12. The front 9 is a lot more wooded than the back half and for sure more challenging. Very nice DGA baskets that catch well on all holes. The tees are all natural but due to the slight elevation on the course and the relatively little use this course sees are perfectly adequate. The signs aren't the greatest by far but are better than no signs. This would be the one thing i would like to see upgraded the most. Narrow fairways on pretty much every hole so accuracy is key here. The rough on the front nine is extremely brutal. A spotter is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED on these. The back 12 is better in this regard as there isn't nearly as many trees. This course is completely different than the more wooded course to the west, which is awesome. Two very different courses on site. Although the fairways are narrow the grass in the rough isnt too thick in most spots. However the wooded areas are very thick. The wind here is the main factor. It makes the course play harder than it looks. A few walks up the fairway to locate pins for most first timers will be required on the front nine. They use the limited amount of trees and bushes extremely well on the back 12, especially on 15 through 19. Wouldn't see this course being too busy ever either which makes it nice and peaceful.
Cons: Contrary to some other reviews its nothing like playing in a cow pasture. However many of the holes feel similar due to the lack of trees. Most notably on the back 12 holes. Again the signs leave something to be desired. That being said though, we had no trouble navigating the course our first time here. It's on a college campus so it can be a hassle to play during the week. A parking permit needs to be purchased before 6:30 on weekdays. These can be purchased for $2 at the campus police department so it is a pay to play at certain times. This is not required on weekends.
Other Thoughts: This course alone is worth a trip. Combined with the other 18 hole course here it is a must play stop for serious players. Theres also Hillcrest DGC about 5 minutes south which is a perfect warm up before playing these 2 on campus courses. Also check out Fox River Park's 2 excellent courses and Kenosha makes for an awesome day of disc golf.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: it's a disc golf course. that's about all i can think of.
Cons: have you ever wanted to play disc golf in a cow pasture without the cows? that's what this course is. you'll wish the cows were there to trample the grass down so you can find your discs after throwing them. it's painfully obvious that they're not maintaining this course at all over the summer. the weeds and grass were knee high in the 2 foot wide fairways, and waist high everywhere else in the rough. this is the only course i've ever played at where i had to search for my discs in the fairway just as much as i did if i threw them into the rough.
you'll only need two discs for this course, a putter and another putter. despite the fact that there are holes over 400 feet, you'll want to throw very conservatively with a putter so you don't lose your mind hunting for it in the weeds. even then, you'll probably lose one anyway, which is why you should take two. seriously, i didn't bother trying to use a driver at all on this course because the fairways are so narrow and so poorly maintained.
Other Thoughts: honestly, my girlfriend and i only played 7 holes of this course because it was so awful. in fact, we ran into a couple of guys and asked them where the tee for hole 1 was since we couldn't find it because everything was horribly overgrown. they said they had given up themselves after 9 holes because it was so bad.
if you do happen to play this course, beware of wasps. there's a wasp nest somewhere around the basket for hole 7. i got stung by two of them while grabbing my putter out of the basket. it was a painful end to an already painful game on a painful course.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Course is set in a hilly prairie area, further away from the main campus of the college. Nothing else going on out here besides disc golf.
- Best feature of this course are the sloping fairways; a good amount of the holes have a good elevation change going both ways. Holes #2 thru #5 play down, up, down, and up, with some big elevated tee shots and some nasty uphill approaches. Even more noticeable from the long tees. A good mix throughout, #13 is another nice downhill mixed among the rest.
- While most of the area is prairie/tall grass, there are patches of scraggly woods and forest to force some line shaping and shot placement. #3 and #5 play tighter close to the basket, with #5 having a large shrub to get around on the drive, placement is key for an upshot past it. There is also some woods on the back half, with four holes that have baskets in or near the woods. #1 and #9 also play near some bigger trees.
- Lots of hazardous areas here, with some really nasty rough in spots, and a little creek to cross on the way to #13's basket. The elevation changes make things even tougher; the downhill shots will punish poor throws that are way off course in eaither direction, and the uphill shots can punish those that aren't accurate or long enough.
- Some big-time hole lengths here, with 7 over 400' from the long tees. Definitely some bombers out here for everyone, of any skill level. Playing the short tees is still a challenge for those without the big arms, a good option either way. Shorter holes help to mix things up as well; most of them are in the woods of course.
- Good signs and baskets, tees aren't too bad either. Navigation isn't terrible, there are some signs, but checking out the map does help.
Cons: - Even though there are many spots to get in trouble, almost all of them can be avoided. Staying out of the tall grass and the patches of gnarly trees can be pretty easy; throwing a hyzers or straight shot is usually always an option.
- The tall grass here is straight up nasty! I would not want to play here during the warmer months, there is no shade for the most part, and probably lots of time looking for plastic. Especially on the longer downhill shots. Not a big con, but it definitely factors in my decision to play.
Other Thoughts: - All in all, this is a pretty tough course that challenges you to be long, accurate, and even longer from the back tees. Big time punishment for sprayed shots with the tall grass and thick patches of rough. Playing safe is an option, but the scores will reflect that. Lots of fun thanks to elevation changes and some grip n' rip type holes. Beginners might want to stay away when the foliage is in bloom, or at least play from the red tees.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
wind much more of a factor here
Pros: Much more length than original. This is quite a bit more of a chucker's course. (To be fair, original, was mostly in short pins, and so, even though we played long tees there also, original seemed much shorter.) Also, it was quite windy, so that made conditions rather difficult on this more wide open course.
Two set of tees.
Good markings to let you know where to go for most of the course. Especially at the area to go to #20, or to play #17, pay attention....
We played three holes (#17, 18 and 19) from short tees and looked at the others. May be more fun for non chuckers to choose to play short tees.
There is some trouble besides the tall grass around. Strategically placed trees and bushes forced me to have an awkward second toss a number of times. Playing partner faced the same on a number of occasions....so, there is some "lay up to the correct area" positioning needed here.
Some "tall" throws are also forced over some of this stuff.
In a two round tourney format, gold level players will probably enjoy the balance of this course to the more technical original.
We played #20 twice (from long tees); and I liked that one quite a bit. A par 3 there, feels well deserved (505 ft. and good amount of obstacles. Good tree/bush grove bunker near pin).
Cons: Tall grass defines the rough here more than anything else.
Natural tees. Some just marked with orange flags for short position. Blue designates longs. These could easily disappear or be mowed. (Tees were in good shape when we played. Flat and mostly grassy looking. Appears this course doesn't get a ton of play.)
There's a lot of throw it 300 ft. and then make a 100 to 200 ft. upshot and try to save par. If you have a 400 ft. arm; you will deuce. If not, there's a lot of par disc here. As noted; in the wind, even pars were rather difficult.
Other Thoughts: First half of the course is played on the left side of the abandoned road. Second half is a little farther down the road, away from the original layout, and on the right side of road (A basic map has been uploaded here and helps especially with finding the Orchid course).
I'm giving the original a 3 rating. I almost want to give this the same; because it is a good compliment to that course. However, there is just not a lot special about this one. Combine the natural tees; the slightly difficult to find beginning, and the fact that as a blue level player; I don't drive 400 ft, and I just can't give it a glowing review. Relatively wide open/chucker golf is probably my least favorite style to play.
With that said, you gotta give kudos to the installation crew for getting this site to a total of 39 holes now.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
The Beast is unleashed...
Pros: This review is based on the setup for the Unleash the Beast Open tournament
~Tees were nicely marked today, red posts am, pro blue, some holes share a pro/am tee box
~Nice mix of open holes and use of the natural trees and bushes
~Pro tees are nice and long if you want to add distance to a course that requires mostly accuracy from the Recreation tees
~A good mix of accuracy shots and you see all types, right, left, straight away
~Lot's of hyzer bomb shots if you're into them
~Fairways are actually a REWARD at this course, make them your friend
~21 holes, a bonus 3 holes!
Cons: ~No permanent tee signs or pads as of yet
~No amenities yet (No bathroom or Water I believe, come prepared)
~The deep rough is especially high on the back holes, don't play alone as mentioned
~Always need a spotter
Other Thoughts: Course had some fairways opened up for the tournament rounds I believe. Hopefully the staff will keep these open to maximize playability with all of the tall grass taking discs on a daily basis. This course is fun to play, a bit of a beast, but easy enough to tame from the Rec tees.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Kind of boring...
Pros: The course plays through a fairly flat and open prairie area with some scattered trees and a small section of woods. There are a few holes through the wooded area, and they are all fun little ace runs through the trees. The rest of the course is longer and open with occasional trees (mostly late in holes), and a few rolling elevation changes, which are used as much as possible to add some variety. There are some ace run length holes, and several long bomb type holes, and a few that fall in between.
The baskets are brand new and catch great. There are basic numbered posts at every tee, and markers inn the ground to show the fault line. The natural pads are level and rut free, and offered fine footing to throw from. There were short tees marked on most of the holes with survey flags, offering a shorter option on all of the longer holes. The flow of the course is easy to follow, despite the lack of tee signs, and the one place the navigation isn't obvious has signs pointing the way.
Cons: The course is pretty boring. All but a few holes are wide open grip it n rip it type of holes where the only punishment for an errant shot is searching through tall prairie grass hoping to step on your disc. I hate this kind of punishment, as it doesn't make you work for your next shot, it just costs you plastic and time. Many of the holes are tweener length holes, too long for most players to really have a chance of reaching, but too short and open to ever force many 4s. Few of the holes force any kind of line shaping, so you don't have to have many different shots in your bag other than a long distance shot of some kind here.
The amenities here are in progress, with natural pads and no tee signs yet. I would guess that the locals are working on this, so I doubt it'll be a con for long, and it didn't really affect my rating. It's a little hard to find the course on campus, it's a ways away from the other course, and hidden down an abandoned looking road.
Other Thoughts: This is a course for the big arms, so if you like having the chance to rip some drives you'll enjoy this course. It does offer a contrast to the wooded holes on the original course, and it's great that a college campus has two full disc golf courses available for students and for the community in general, but this piece of land just doesn't make for much variety or very interesting holes. It's worth a round if you're playing the Parkside course (which I enjoyed a lot), but don't drive too far out of your way just for the Orchid.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Long and prarie nasty!
Pros: This course is very long and challenging. Anyone who can throw 400+ feet will love this course. There are a ton of holes where you can flat out grip it and rip it.
Once we found hole #1 the course was pretty easy to navigate. We had no issues finding the next hole of the 21 holes. The parkside guys do a great job. This course is very new. By the time it's done there it will be clearly marked.
There are quite a few holes that utilize the elevation. There are several fun downhill shots.
Staying on the fairway is a premium. This course will punish you with nasty rough. The fairways are very narrow on many holes.
This course will teach you how to throw drives in the wind.
Cons: Currently there are natural tee pads.Not sure if there are plans for concrete.
The rough is thick and I cannot imagine playing here in the summer.
I found this course very repetitive and somewhat boring. I need to get back to play it as there were 20+mph winds. I felt there were quite a few 3.5 pars for me. I threw a ton of drives, pitched up, and tapped in. I would have like to seen several more par 4 holes.
Other Thoughts: Finding hole #1 is a challenge. Hopefully a course mape will be uploaded soon.
This is definitely not a beginners course. I did however seen some shorter tees marked.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 4 Not
C = As average an experience as there is
Pros: What I personally like and how this course stacks up in my list of 18 and more hole courses:
1) Holes with good risk/reward. Fair, but harsh punishment for bad decisions or execution. == C-
(The vast majority of holes are wide open prairie type holes. A bunch of holes have some trees surrounding the basket (which only adds punishment/scoring spread in a minor way) and only 3-4 holes of the 21 would be considered wooded. The most ominous "risk" on this course is that you risk losing your disc for long periods of time in deep prairie schule (at least in the summer and fall). That is not the true golf sort of risk I seek out!
2) Holes that have rewarding birdie opportunities for me. I'm a Blue level player (950ish skill) who throws 300' accurately, 360' max. == D+
(This course seems like it was designed for people with 400'+ arms who hate the woods. Those types will probably rate this course pretty high. Most of the holes are too long for me to reach (and leave just a doinker upshot), and the wooded holes can be reached with a putter. There is either no realistic chance of a birdie on many holes or no realistic satisfaction of scoring a birdie on the others. Only 5-6 of the 21 are in a range that are fun/challenging for me, but those are wide open for the most part so that leaves me only fighting distance.)
3) More wooded than open - lots of variety of shots required caused by hole shape and topography == C-
(As stated earlier, this is a wide open prairie course and the handful of wooded holes are nothing to write home about. Kudos to the designer(s) for milking the limited terrain for what its worth and adding some variety there.)
4) Natural beauty (Appalachian beauty preferred) and seclusion. == B
(There are large portions of the course that are very secluded and not in view of the hustle bustle of life. The prairie and prairie-type woods have their own beauty and charm. I much prefer this to manicured suburban parks.)
5) Bonus points for multi-throw holes with defined landing zones, good risk/reward and multiple options to play them. == N/A
Other Thoughts: It's all about feeding the addiction, so I ranked this course subjectively based on my own "personal addiction factor". The grades above tell how well this course will draw me back to itself again and again and again. See my profile for specifics on my rating philosophy.
I fancy myself as a connoisseur of good course design and I am a competitive Blue level (950-ish rated) with mid-level power (accurate to 300' with max D of 360'). Since I have played a decent number of courses (150+ 18-hole, 90+ 9-hole as of late 2009), my hope is that players/explorers who have similar addiction tastes will find my ratings list helpful as they choose courses to play and explore.
I fully expect others with different tastes/philosophies to disagree with me…..and that's the fun of things here.
9 of 13 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: The Orchid is a nice secluded course on a college campus. The course is set in a field that's mostly open but with enough trees on every hole to keep it interesting. The back 9 is similar to the front 12, but has a lot more trees. The tee pads are grass and the fairways are mowed while the rough is allowed to grow. Most of the holes are medium to long in length, but there are a couple short ones as well. There are some nice elevation changes on some of the holes.
Cons: The course had only been in a few weeks when I played here so I'm sure it will continue to be improved upon.
When I played here the tee markers were wooden stakes in the ground. The tee area on a few of the holes was uneven.
The course is fairly open, but I believe the available land was used to its full potential. Since it's so open, the course favors distance over accuracy.
The shot variety here isn't too good. Because there aren't a lot of trees to shape the shots, most of the holes turn into straight or hyzer shots.
I played here around Thanksgiving and the rough wasn't too bad, but I'm sure it's much worse during the summer. There were lots of thorns here so be careful.
There is a bit of a walk between a few of the holes and because the rough is so tall in places, it could make it difficult to find the next tee.
Other Thoughts: This is a fun course and I'm sure it's going to continue to improve since it was brand new when I played here.
New players could get discouraged here with the rough and long holes. More advanced players will likely enjoy the challenge the distance and rough presents.
With another 18 hole course on campus, it makes me wish I'd gone to school here!
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Fledgling Championship Design and Distance
Pros: 1) Normally I do not like the prairie type course, but this one does not disappoint because it has enough other natural trees/prairie shrubs (like red twigged dogwood and other prairie type shrubs that there are obstacles in your way even on the open prairie feeling holes.
2) This course is truly setup for some championship disc golf. The holes are all pretty long and the shorter ones you feel like you get a break on are densely wooded and bad shots are punished severely if you hit some of those trees. The average hole on this course is 341 (WOW). I felt like I was going to have to throw my arm off to play well, and although I didnt end up scoring well my primary problem was putting and some stupid errant approaches. I do enjoy it when most holes have two shots that need to be considered. The drive and then the approach. There are just not many easy birdies on this course. The distance vary from 181 (tight wooded) up to 505. Some of them will play much longer or shortes depending on where the wind is however. If #4 is downwind, I would expect to see the top pros shoot for the island green . . . even I parked it about 75' short of the pin and then nearly made my hyzer around the trees protecting the island green from the tee.
3) Design of this course truly takes all of a wonderful property into play. It uses the gentle slopes on the first 5 holes to its advantage. Then it works its way into and around a tighter wooded area. Then it opens back up again into the prairie. Holes #10-12 will be tough playing back into the prevailing wind especially with how tight those fairways are. These arent the prairie fairways that do not effect your shot at all, the grasses and other wildflowers are as tall as your arms so you need to keep the foliage in your shot selection.
4) Foliage variety is nice. The prairie holes have a lot of prairie shrubs like RTDW, they have a lot of different grasses and wildflowers. They also incorporate a handful of large mature deciduous trees into the shot selection process. You need to try and go around key trees.
5) #4 is a cool hole with a long drive to just in front of a small nearly dry creek. I assume this is very wet in spring after the snow melt as it is obviously the big drainage area for the wetland higher on the property. You could also go out and around the trees on the right side of the creek to try and park it on the green but you need a cannon to get it there.
6) There are no real weak holes on this course. Even the straighter shorts holes have unique characteristics that will add to the challenge.
7) The setting for this course is beautiful, you are totally removed from most civilization. Although this time of year you can see the next road to the east and the maintenance buildings on 10, 11, 12, and then a few other buildings on the last 4 holes because all of the trees are bare, in season they would be much more hidden and it would feel like you are just out in nature (which is one of the big reasons I love this game). You are so secluded it just feels right! I met one of the designers last week when I was walking the course and he said they had all sorts of issues with DNR and other people concerned about the ecological impact of this course going in over here. More than a handful of times you can see paths for either turtles, deer, or other migratory animals. Please respect that and take care of this course.
Cons: 1) This course has less variety to the other 18 hole course, in that it is primarily set in the prairie. It can be a little repetetive. A lot of the fairways turn, go up over little ridges, or down ridges, so picking your landing area will take some getting used to. So what I am saying is the fairways are actually bigger than you think when standing on the tee, but are still harder to hit because of blind shots, and the gentle turns some of them have. Once you figure the course out you will be able to take much better aim on some of the holes, but a first timer will not know where to aim.
2) This course is not even close to beginner friendly because the fairways are narrow and just off the fairways are 4 foot tall prairie grasses. Not only will beginners be losing a ton of discs but they will also have a real struggle to execute shots through and over these taller prairiew grasses. If you are a beginner and want to try this course go early in the spring before anything has gotten too dense or tall. You will also have no problem finding your discs right after they burn the prairie which I assume they do over here too.
3) Primary challenge to shooting well out here is the distance, and since I am fairly new and I just don't have a big arm it leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. It isn't necessarily bad, but I just cannot par many holes over 425 and this 21 hole course has 7 holes at or above about 420'. I liek the challenege to try and get more distance, but I will forever struggle on this course because I just don't have that kind of power. PROS READING THIS REVIEW MIGHT CONSIDER IT A PRO, BUT AS AN AVERAGE DISC GOLFER IT IS A NEGATIVE TO ME.
4) Tee areas still need a lot of work. There were grape vines or Ivy vines in multiple places right where you were trying to tee off leaving the footing to be very unsure. There were also a few that had ruts in them creating a physical hazard and a confidence issue when trying to tee off. I KNOW THESE WILL BE TAKEN CARE OF AND I WILL ADJUST MY REVIEW WHEN I SEE THAT HAS HAPPENED.
5) Hole #7 back in the corner is supposed to be a split fairway around a large evergreen and some sort of densely branched scrubby tree (some sort of box elder or something). The fairway to the left seems almost unhittable from the teebox and the right side is clearly a bigger opening to hit, but if you dont get it far enough you will be in jail behind the tree. The best throw would be a throw out to the left that even if it ends up in the tall prairie grass you still have a shot at the basket. It just seems like they need to cut two more branches off the tree near the tee to open that gap a little bit.It seems almost unhittable, although perhaps a LHBH thrower could do it. The alignmen of the tee could also be changed to make the either route a fair challenge.
6) On multiple occassions we ran across patches of seriously nasty thorny bushes. SOme of these are within 5 feet of a fairway and those are the types of plants that should be able to be removed with maintenance over time. I am not saying to clearcut the course, but selectively go in and cut this nasty stuff out. It isn't good for the game or the design, all it can do is draw some blood. I guess I do have a connection to a course that has spilled my blood. Here is has happened, all the Florida courses with sawtooth palmettos, and a few other places I have walked into the wild rose bushes without realizing it.
7) The flow of this course is a little broken up for 2 reasons. After hole #5 you have to follow a path way to the corner of the property. This happened because of one of those migratory areas. You can see you walk right over a natural drainageway and you can even see little trackes and tunnels through the grasses of turtles and rabbits and such. It is a slight flow problem, and truthfully, you could almost add another hole there to get you to the far corner. Then after #9 you head back past hole #5 basket to find 10-12. A little confusing area. Then after #12 ytou have to head back across the road to the other 9 holes that have been in for a year.
Other Thoughts: DISCLAIMER: I am rating this course on its current setup. It has been int he ground for 2 weeks only so I am sure things will be tweaked often in the coming months. It has no set tees, no tee signs (only posts in the ground to mark the general area), no benches or garbage cans. They started to bury a post in the ground at the tee and paining an orange lines across the front of the teebox but only did that on 2 holes I think. It also is currently missing #11 basket as there must have been a mixup of somekind. I know they will be getting signs eventually (the other course has great signage) and I hope they want to put in concrete tees, although it remains to be seen if they will do dual tees or not as there are not even forward tees visible. (This course will be at least 1/2 disc higher when it gets signs, concrete tees, directional signage, and it gets worn in a little bit (the rough will be brutal until people begin to walk through it more to search for their errant drives). I will be here often enough that I will gladly edit my review as the other amenities begin to improve. But hey for now they have another 21 holes on top of a great 18 holer already. Another huge benefit . . . it is open all winter . . . so if I have an entire day to kill this winter I would much rather come here and play 39 holes thna go anywhere else. It is worth the drive to get here. I simply wanted to get some info up here to help anyone who may be travelling during the holidays as it is a really nice course, and definitely one of the better ones that will be open from now through the winter.
One other tidbit I got from one of the designers is that when you are standing on hole #16 (the long hole shooting slightly downhill) if you see the mound in the distance, they are considering putting basket out there . . . something like 1000' away from the tee. You can see they have been scouting that location out because they have mowed a path back there. They also were going to make the #17th tee further back from where it is closer to that mound on #16. Those two holes would be extreme and too mcuh for me, but to improve the challenge of the course I can see why they would want to add those ideas.
One other point of reference that isnt necessarily a pro or a con is that they have a walkway mowed between you and the fairway . . . which usually begins about 50-100' off the tee. I like the feel of tha, because it makes you think more about your shot maybe and truthfully even the plant material can get in your way if you throw too low for the first 100' or so. It jsut gives a clearer definition as to where the fairway begins and ends, the walkway is only to get you to the fairway.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
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