Many Rocks, Few Turtles
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Navigation - not once did I need to look at the map, as the well-marked paths from basket to next tee were obvious.
Tee area: 4'x10' flat rubber pads framed by wood framed by stone. Tee signs showing all possible pin positions, current position, direction to next tee, and other nearby tees/baskets.
The homogeneous terrain can make for some time-consuming disc searches.
Not much shot-shaping, and very few tight holes - mostly throw straight, with a twinge of mid/late turn/fade, and avoid the few trees nearest the optimal line.
This attractive course sits in a wonderful setting. Gently sloping land, the sandy soil somewhat covered by pine needles/cones, a multitude of rocks (wear firm/hard-bottomed shoes), a vast amount of short shrubbery, and scattered, tall pines, with mountains in the distant background.
As mentioned earlier, the trees are so scattered that there is typically a straight line to the basket (I didn't throw my first moderately turning shot until halfway through the course), nor are there many tight holes (encountered my first one two-thirds). So, you can miss the primary line and suffer little for it, as the recovery will likely be relatively unimpeded - up to you whether you consider this a positive or a negative :-).
There is some type of elevation change on most holes, predominantly a simple/minor up/downslope, with an up-n-over, or across valley thrown in. The rocks and/or bushes can make any type of run-up on the approach shot problematic.
Favourite hole: Number-9 - one of the steeper downslopes, requiring a right-turn (B-position the day I played) late, needing to miss some of the larger pines on the course, as it is also set near a (quite dry the day I played) creekbed.
A very scenic, well-appointed course, primarily offering modest challenges - except when trying to remember exactly which clump of bushes your disc was last seen flying towards!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 5 Not
A lot more rocks than turtles
Pros: Turtle Rock is south of Lake Tahoe in the Eastern Sierra Nevada. It has much to recommend it--it is well-tended, has terrific signage and lots of amenities. The tee pads are adequate (rubber), and each comes with its own broom. There are lots of benches--every hole has one, if I remember correctly. Each hole has its own sponsor, and the whole feel of the course is that it is well cared for. In the long position, the holes are very challenging, technical and rugged. It's good to bear in mind that Turtle Rock is around 5500 feet above sea level, causing my Gazelle to fade out more like my Orc does back home in Lexington, KY.
Cons: Notwithstanding its obvious level of TLC, I wasn't as thrilled with the course as I expected to be, given its overall rating. Mostly, it just has too little variety--essentially each hole has the same challenges, the same basic looks, with the only differences being slightly up or downhill and hole length, depending on the pin position (A, B, C or D). The entire course is underneath a canopy of pine trees. Besides all the trees, you have sand, sagebrush, pine needles, and rocks, and rocks, and more rocks--so many rocks that it's really hard to walk. From hole to hole, you just change direction a bit, perhaps go uphill or downhill and face more pine trees, sand, rocks, sagebrush and pine needles--to me, a frustrating and rather uninspiring combination to face for all 18 holes. If a hole is long, you just have a long version of the aforementioned. If you don't have a spotter, you'd better watch as carefully as you can exactly where your disc lands. Memorize it as well as possible, because then in getting to your disc you have to look down to keep from twisting your ankle on a rock. There is a creek bed, but the fact of it being dry when I played on August 9 may have removed one of the variety-adding factors. The need to clean the sand off your disc after every throw is tiresome.
Other Thoughts: Having said all that, I do like Turtle Rock, and if I lived near it I would play it often. The fact of it being well-maintained is no small thing. Navigation is not an issue, but be sure and bring a print-out of the map. A rating of 3.5 may seem low to some, but to me just the lack of essential variation made this the right score for me. I have no fault with the design of the course, which I think is actually pretty good, but the plot of land itself limits the possibilities, which is why I rated it as such.
4 of 9 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Great Course! Well laid out 18 holes in the Eastern Sierra. If you have never been to this part of the Sierra do yourself a favor and visit it. High desert and pines come together.
Some great holes, long shots and some shorter ones. Water in play on a few holes but on this day it nothing you cant get your disc back from. Course info near hole 1 as well as score cards. First class for sure!
Cons: nothing I can think of. You may have to do some searching for your disc in the sagebrush but its not enough to make it a real "con".
Other Thoughts: Camping on site and also nearby. Hot Springs, what more needs to be said on that matter.
The general store at Markleville Store sells Turtle Rock stamped discs, get one, help support the course. Please pack out your trash.
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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