14 Helpful / 1 Not
...still a work in progress?
Pros: This is truly a one-of-a-kind course, and has a ton of potential. There are many unique and memorable holes like Bonus Hole B that starts on the top of a tall hill and has a great hill-country view. Hole 6 is a very cool, short birdie hole that throws out over a ravine with a small creek at the bottom that adds a little risk.
Pretty much every hole requires a very precise shot, and a lot of them require power and precision if you even want to par it out.
It has good pin location as can be seen in most Houck courses, and by good, I mean challenging. For instance, Hole 15, which is pretty much a birdie filler hole is made slightly more risky with its pin location on the side of a small bluff. The pin on 2 may be the most difficult to reach as it is guarded by trees in front and to the right, but you can't really go left either because there is also a group of trees that block the fairway on the left side...oh, and this is after you throw uphill across a ravine through a fairly tight fairway.
Cons: I was going to hold off on reviewing this course until they finished it up, but well over a year after opening, I'm still waiting for them to finish it. It's hard to knock it for this since it is a private free-to-play course on very unique hilly terrain, but it's impossible to ignore. The same mulch piles have been in certain fairways for over a year still remain un-spread (holes 11 and 13 come to mind), although the overall height of them has been worn down by the weather.
This course seems to have almost regressed in the past half-year instead of progressing to a more finished state. The last time I was out there, Holes 1, 3, and 18 were missing (and possibly 2- I didn't check since it is blind and out of the way of the rest of the course). Hole 3 is one of the best holes on the entire course with a picturesque pin location in front of a rock formation and across the creek. It's a shame this pin has been removed and I have no idea why. Hole 18 has never been put back in even though the parking lot was finished last year.
The teepads have only slightly been improved since it first opened. They are still very rough, but at least they have cut some of the tree stumps down that used to protrude in the boxes; "some" being the keyword there.
There are now tons of downed cedars strewn throughout the edges of fairways on multiple holes. It looks like they were cut down and just left there, making disc retrieving an extremely strenuous endeavor if you go off the fairway, which is not too difficult on this course considering how tight most of the fairways are.
Hole 12 shoots over the path between holes 9 and 10. Considering hole 12 is a big downhill shot it is quite dangerous for people walking this path or even for people that are finishing up at hole 9. I have seen more shots come spiking down at hole 9's basket than I have at Hole 12's basket, but luckily no cracked skulls to speak of.
The first half of hole 13's fairway is ALWAYS muddy due to what looks like an underground spring that surfaces in the middle of it.
Supposedly, there are short tees out here for most of the holes. I've seen maybe 1 or 2 of them, but I'd hardly consider them tee boxes-- more like 3 cedar logs placed on the ground in an open rectangle. I don't think anyone actually plays from them and I'm not sure if many of them even exist.
Other Thoughts: This is not a beginner's course by any means. A lot of the holes are difficult par 4's around 500' that wind through thick cedars and require precise shots into small landing areas if you want any type of look at a clear 2nd shot. This can be challenging for advanced players, frustrating for intermediate players, and downright impossible for beginners since many of the landing areas require a ~300' shot. Simply put, this is the most challenging course I've ever played.
14 of 15 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Sign me up for some bible study!
Pros: 1) Nice discatcher baskets are very visible in the woods. I love these baskets for wooded course because it makes finding the hole so much easier.
2) Nice John Houck signs again, I seem to have played like 10 Houck courses on this roadtrip to TX and am never disappointed. Hole #, a good descriptive map, distances, and the par are all listed.
3) A nice big course map is also available near the rain shelter entrance area.
4) Hole distance variation is great on this course. Lots of shorter technical holes, and lots of longer technical holes. Very few open places to bust out your max D, but I don't like those kinds of holes anyways.
5) Very minimal undergrowth on most of this course. The fairways are defined but you can get off course a little bit and not be overly punished. There are couple holes later in the round where the undergrowth could use some work but overall, I think it is in good shape.
6) The holes are all pretty tight with fairway placement the top priority. However the fairways seem to be pretty fair . . . nothing to ridiculous as you can run into from time to time on these tighter wooded courses. Challenging YES Unfair NO.
7) The use of elevation on this course is outstanding. What an awesome property for disc golf! They have all sorts of gentle ups and downs, some sidehills, and even these most extreme uphill and the most extreme dropoff I have ever played (the two additional holes A and B located after Hole #11).
8) Logs are placed along some fairways and also to be used as directionals from time to time. It looks nice and is functional too and I like this aspect.
9) Dual tees allows for a wider variety of play. I would say though that a real true beginner will probably not like it out here even from the short tees. If a beginner played here and wanted to come back . . . they are a true addict because they loved getting their butt handed to them.
10) Oustanding views on the holes up on the hill. Extra hole #B is simply an awesome panorama after you exit the short tunnel.
11) Good variety of hole type out here. There are a lot of tight technical holes but there also seem to be a few "mountain desert" type holes playing along the cliffside. Then you go into mountain goat mode to climb up Hole #A and down Hole #B.
12) The woods out here also creates a low ceiling because the trees seem to sprawl a lot of horizontal growth. You want to keep your disc under those branches fairly often or risk getting knocked down. Just another challenge that I am happy to experience.
Cons: 1) Hiking path can cause some confusion in a couple spots on the course. I walked the wrong way a couple times before realizing I should have been headed a different direction. The map will help out with this if you have it with you.
2) Loose rocks and tough footing from time to time on the course. A good cleanup would be helpful on some of the fairways, but perhaps more and more rocks will continue to get exposed. I guess I would recommend that as they continue to take down and chip up trees to continue to put the woodchips and mulch down on these treacherous areas. If you aren't careful you could go down hard and the ground on this course is typically not really soft . . . it is very rocky.
3) Mulch tees framed by logs leave a lot to be desired. I can see how concrete would be near impossible out here, but maybe this could be an ideal course for rubber mats or something else more permanent and needing little to no maintenance.
4) Hole #18 has the water in play but the basket had been removed. I'm not sure where the basket would be or how this hole would be played, but it was unfortunately not in when we played. I heard it had something to do with some parking lot construction possibly. It is a negative only because it looked really unfair for me to kock this course down to a 4.0 but only have 3 negatives. I guess what it means is that the negatives are really negative.
Other Thoughts: This course could easily be a 5.0 with nicely poured teepads and a little bit of maintenance to some of the fairways and perhaps the use of some more mulch in some bare areas. It has everything and it is supremely challenging from start to finish, plus it has nice baskets, nice signs, and all the amenities of a top notch course. Evaluating just on disc golf . . . this is a 5 in my book, but when looking at the big picture . . .some more maintenance and cleanup issues need to be resolved for th course to be a 5.0.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
A beautiful setting is a fantastic start to this heavily wooded course on church property. The Houck signs are fantabulous as always. Great new Discatcher Pro baskets. This course is a nice mix of tight fairways and long accurate shots. There are some shorter cutesy holes in there as well. The elevation shots here are great and a welcome change to simplistic approach shots common to a lot of courses. The "A" and "B" bonus holes are nothing close to average and exemplify the elevation changes in play here. Multiple tee boxes attempt to provide easier teeing spots for those less glutton for punishment.
The wood chip bedded tee boxes provide some rough footing depending on how dispersed or dense they are. Blind baskets are abundant here and can be frustrating for first timers. Another reviewer put it accurately when he called this course not so much risk/reward as execute or die. A personal preference is that I'd like a couple long, more open holes that really let you rip a disc.
Several of the holes were closed for construction when I played the course, but I still feel like I got the gist of the course. Threes on my card were few and far between when I played here and this course kicked my butt the first time out. It's not for the faint of heart. You will get a decent endurance test on this course with all the up and down hikes.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
You will be challenged
Pros: Beautiful course. The leaves are turning, the isolated feeling of being in the woods, hilly terrain, it's all here.
Great signs. I would expect nothing less from HouckDesign.
Elevation changes. Seems like the basket is never on the same plane from the one you throw from, the basket is everywhere. Uphill, downhill, both steep and gradual, are present. The changes place a premium on placement.
*Greatest example? Bonus holes. "A" feels like it is literally straight up. "B" is a compliment to that, and the most picturesque, a throw "off the top of the world" it seems.
All shots are tested and all shots can be used. Backhand, forehand, thumber, roller, if it's in your bag of tricks, you can use it. Left, right and straight, are all here as this course favors all-handedness.
Intermediate to pro will find fun in such a challenging and tough course.
Cons: Beginners should go somewhere else, honestly. You will not have fun, you will lose a disc and you will hate this sport if you come out to this course. This course will punish, relentlessly, stray shots, bad releases, bad form, etc. Intermediate to Pro only for the obvious reason; it's TOUGH!
Tee boxes need a face lift. They are in prime spots, no complaint about placement, but the condition they are in is mediocre at best. Uneven and loose gravel and dirt from natural tees are just a nuisance. Something consistent from tee to tee, like rubber mats or, if a lot of work was put in, concrete, would make this a championship wooded course.
Other Thoughts: I'll say it again: this is a HARD course. This course puts a premium on consistent shot placement, the ability to play elevation changes, and the confidence to hit very specific lines and elevated putts. All in all, I found this course to be one of the most challenging in the south Austin area and have minimal to complain about.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 2 Not
Close, But Not Quite
Pros: Great mix of shots, very challenging, interesting terrain and incredible views.
Cons: Too rough, bad tee pads, unfinished, lacks fun shots.
Other Thoughts: I'm a huge fan of Houck designs, but I'm torn on this one. There are some really good holes, and it follows the same concept as many courses I like, but there's a big problem with this one. It's not really risk/reward so much as execute or die. Hitting lines is a must on this course, but not only are these some of the toughest lines to hit, but you're handicapped by trying to keep your balance on really rough tee pads.
This course is far from a lost cause. It needs some work, mainly on the tee pads and getting mulch piles out of many fairways. If/when it gets cleaned up a little the design is probably a 4-4.5.
8 of 10 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -DISCatcher Pro's
-mulched tee boxes; Pro and Am
-Picturesque Hill Country scenery
-Creative holes that challenge most players
-Bonus Holes; Water Holes, Extreme Elevation
-Great signage, trails, benches, maps by hole #1
Cons: -This course is extremely challenging, and amateur or new players that easily get discouraged may not enjoy it.
-Heavily wooded, w/ stumps on ground. Wear shoes with good grip.
Other Thoughts: I feel fortunate to have such a great course in my city. Austin Ridge Bible is definitely one of the best courses in Texas.
Throwing from the "Top of the World," on bonus hole B is absolutely jaw dropping!
What makes this course so special is the combination of the hill country scenery and elevation make for a great hike. You ascend and descend your way through a disc golf mountain.
After playing more disc golf courses in Texas over 2010, I felt obligated to change my wording of "one of the best courses in Central Texas," to simply one of the best in the state. Enjoy.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 14 Not
Pros: - Great layout
- variety of shots
- beautiful environment
- multiple tees
- bonus holes!!!!
Cons: - challenging
- very hilly
- disc golf meets mountain climbing
Other Thoughts: personal favorite
- bonus holes are hard to get to but well worth it
2 of 16 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
So frustrating but worth it
Pros: A greatly challenging course. You have to bring your A game to this course or you might go home crying.
Beautiful scenery. Has one of the best views on a course in central Texas.
Good use of water and elevation.
It's close to my parents house (a personal pro)
Cons: Have to have pin point accuracy on many of the holes. Their fairways are only a few feet wide.
Lots of chances to lose discs.
There is a nice bridge on #3 but there could be a few move of them on water crossings.
Someone needs to go through the course with a machete and clear out a lot of the underbrush.
Other Thoughts: I would not bring a new player here, it would only frustrate them, and might turn them off on the sport all together.
The course may still be under construction as there are big piles of wood chips all over the course.
Would be a great tournament course.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 7 Not
Only if you have water
Pros: Very pretty course! You probably wont lose a disc because you arent trying to drive this course. Its very challenging and I like challenging courses, shooting at a straight basket isn't very enjoyable.
Cons: It is very challenging. I'm not even kidding.Do not play if you are inexperienced which is why I wont be going back soon.
Other Thoughts: It isn't really listed yet on the internet besides DGreview so it wont be very packed.
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
pretty but hard
Pros: The course is definitely in a beautiful setting in the hill country, and the hike that is the course is worth playing it.
I found it to be very easy to follow with signs/maps at every hole that were very detailed.
Every shot is used and if you use a variety of discs you'll use them all.
Its a very tactical course, and can be frustrating. I almost walked off after struggling to bogey and double the first three holes. I was glad I didn't as the next three or four were much 'easier' (quotations as nothing is easy on this course) and i snagged two birds in a row. I realized at this point that it is not a course for throwing 300- 400 ft drives or even attempting them. It is definitely a lay-up type course where you want to make short accurate shots and hope to par the hard holes by making absolutely no mistakes and bird the couple easier ones. For players like me that don't play with a full bag I recommend making good use of your mid range and approach discs, even off the tees.
All in all it was a fun course, i played 1-13 in about 45 minutes on my first time which is not bad, and is worth the setting.
Cons: The main drawback is the trees should be cut back by about 35%. I have never hit so many trees in my life and my best drives through the trees were just luck. It makes it frustrating to play for anyone not at a super high level of play or with ninja like accuracy. As someone else stated NEVER bring a beginner out here, they will hate it and never play again. Most of the trees are cedar, which are basically invasive weeds that should be removed anyways. Removal of a few trees would turn this course to a 5 easily.
I thought there wasnt enough variety of holes. Lots of shot variety but everything was super tight and either very long or very short. I like to see more holes in the 300-375 ft range and everything here was either 500 ft. or 200 ft. I also need at least a few holes that are open and i can let it rip on.
Other than those things its great and I'm gonna play it again and whenever I'm in Austin.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.