6 Helpful / 0 Not
Backing Up to See the Whole Picture
Pros: Alcorn Creek runs through the course and allows for some interesting angles in the landscape as well as some interesting tree positioning. Lots of foliage had been cleared out for hole access. Mixed with traditional shifts and variations of Texas winds and weather, this course can take on several different faces. Plenty of different holes allow each disc golfer several oppurtunities to make birdies as well, as a few ace possiblities, and plenty of pars, bogeys or worse. It has been said that a good course has been created when the land and the trees make the course, not the people who develop it. Looking at it from a player's point of view and not one of the course's co-designers, it looks as if this course has a combination of both. There is a mixture of interesting tee and basket positions blended with traditional positions as well. I would say it is a well balanced course. But then again, some courses are defined as mediocre when the phrase "well balanced" is included in a review. Still it does what it was made to do. Make you think. This course has several risk reward holes on it. Though there may not seem like many, one would have to look at the big picture. Do I go for the ace run, or accept my birdie? Do I go for the small gap, or take the safe route? Those questions are presented on the majority of the holes. With this course only being 3 months old in its present layout, Alcorn Creek has plenty of time to grow and mature into a very good to great course. Plenty of potential for such a young course.
Cons: Thorns, thorns, and oh did I mention thorns? With the land being used as a cattle ranging operation facility, there is plenty of cow poop to go around. I just have to mention that when you go on a really good winding course, you tend to see plenty of deer droppings and other wild live droppings as well. Did I mention the thorns? Also, I agree with the previous reviewer about the dead cow. That will be taken care of in the next few weeks. Lets not forget, cows die sometimes on a cattle ranging operation facility. Wildlife such as deer and rodents die sometimes on other disc golf courses. Remember, this is a very young course on a working cattle ranging facility. A lot of things need to happen for it to become an awsome course. We still have a long way to go, but the constructive criticism is most welcome. Please keep them coming. No perminant tee pads and baskets will be an on going discussion until some logistics issues and legal disputes are settled. Until that time, I have considered altering the course routing and adding distance to three holes to make them Par 4s and maybe a Par 5. This will combine four holes into two and make one longer. This will be looked at very closely.
Other Thoughts: With a young course, there are many things to think about. Sometimes sacrifices have to made to improve the oveall look of the big picture. That big picture needs to be the mark of one's legacy or at least the start of it in some shape form or fashion. People are going to look at you based upon the product you present to them, the services you provide with your product, how you honor that service and how you handle your self and various situations and environments. And that is something I am planning to do with this course: to start my legacy as a course designer. It might not be much, but its a start. I want this course to make every disc golfer think. Think about the next shot, and think about how to get there with their present shot. And I plan to keep it that way.
Good luck to you all in your journeys on each course, and I hope you learn something from each one of your journeys, whether it be a necessity or a choice.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Best Course for Miles
Pros: This course will make you better! There are many chances to experience a true risk vs. reward situation [see Hole-By-Hole in Other]. Located on a working ranch, this course takes the player down into the woods surrounding a winding creek and stock pond. The level of skill required to score under par is substantial, but not extreme; most of the holes are rather short. There are a few chances to air out the drivers, but for the most part, you will be working accurate mids down in the thorns [see cons]. A ton of work went into whipping the land into shape to create this course. The designer is very friendly and genuine.
The design of the 20 holes makes great use of the land. A couple of the holes are very memorable, but none are truly breathtaking signature holes. The transitions between holes were marked with good temporary signs and flags.
The course is very tough but really fun to play. Everyone goes into the thorns at some point. The water in the creek was shallow enough to grab your disc and get to a drop location.
Cons: The vegetation is BRUTAL! Everything that is not a tree is covered in thorns! Prickly vines crawl up most of the trees on the course, and some of the trees themselves have longer thorns. The undergrowth offers a unique challenge, but it is way too thick in parts. This might make the course less popular with a beginner crowd (if the course opens up more often than tournaments).
Some of the crossings of the creek seem a little dangerous, as the creek bed is up to 10' deep in parts. The course is brand new, so there are no teepads or permanent baskets. Hopefully this course will become a lasting fixture in the Bryan/College Station disc golf scene!
Other Thoughts: I played this course twice during The After New Year's New Year's Bash tournament. Being a working ranch, there is a poop all over the ground everywhere.
As far as the actual design of the course as it stands, there is still a bit to be desired. A few of the holes are repetitive, especially the woodsy shots that require pinpoint accuracy to land within birdie range. The short holes are simply too short: Holes 12, 14, and 18 each present an interesting challenge, but their range makes them almost seem like filler. Or rather, the concepts developed in these short holes would have made great finishes to longer holes. The course seems to favor RHBH players, but a few of the holes require a rightward fade. Many of the fairways would benefit greatly from removing just a bit of the undergrowth or a tree or two. Some shots feel like they require a bit too much luck.
Rather than expand the course by four holes to make it par 72 (24x3), I would actually combine or expand some holes to make some true par 4's and par 5's. There are certainly plenty of opportunities to make stellar doglegs down in the trees. The bigger arms out there do not have a chance to stretch out. There are also opportunities to make some holes longer and maintain the challenge. I would have liked to see a shot over the stock pond, but the holes surrounding it are pretty good.
Hole 1 is a shot from the field down into the trees. The basket is located next to the creek, like many of the holes on the course.
Hole 2 is a shot across an open field and around a large clump of trees and thorns containing the basket. A straight shot that fades around the trees will put the player in good position to birdie the hole.
Hole 3 plays along the edge of the trees. With the open pasture on the right, there are two approaches to the basket. A straight shot might fade into the trees on the left, while a long hyzer has to get around the old trees overhanging the basket.
Hole 4 gives the first taste of the nature of most of the course: the hole is short; you have to hit a gap; there are thorns waiting for you on a bad shot.
Hole 5 gives you three choices: play right and go over some water while going under two trees, or shoot straight for the basket by hitting a gap under old trees and over the edge of the stock pond, or launch a big anhyzer around a huge tree. The basket is on the edge of the pond, so you face your first true risk/reward proposition of the course. This hole is one of the most memorable holes on the course. The view of the water combined with the risk/reward scenario makes for a great hole.
Hole 6 is the longest on the course. The tee is below the far embankment of the pond, so the shot must fly upward. The basket is well beyond a dense clump of trees and thorns.
Hole 7 runs along the edge of the property. The fence on the right is OB, and the shot must hit a 20' gap at around 260'.
Hole 8 is an island hole that offers good payoff for a good shot. You can lay up two ways: straight or left around some trees. The creek bed is around six feet deep, and water is OB. The island with the basket has enough space for a good shot to land, but many will fade off into the creek.
Hole 9 plays slightly uphill to the back corner of the property. Accuracy is a must on this hole if you want a chance at a birdie, but there is a good spot to lay up for three.
Hole 10 shoots from a small clearing into the trees. The basket is guarded on three sides by trees, and it takes a little right turn to get there.
Hole 11 is a relatively open anhyzer shot downhill toward the creek. There is a large clump of OB thorny vines in the center of the fairway. When I played, there was a decaying cow carcass just off the left side of the fairway!
Hole 12 takes you back to the stock pond through a short, curving cut in the trees. The basket is uphill on the edge of the pond, and long putts will go in the water.
Hole 13 is a long, open shot with a unique finish! The right side of the hole is solid trees, but there is one break at around 300', beyond which is the basket. A well-executed forehand shot could fade into the slot, but the hole has space for a long anhyzer to give any hope of a birdie. The basket is inside the tree line beyond a cutting creek bed. This is the second memorable hole on the course.
Hole 14 is a tough little hole! The tee location gives a view of the basket through a small triangle of trees. The creek runs right beneath your shot. You can lay up on the left with a little hyzer shot, or you can try to get across the creek to the basket. There is also a clearing in the forest to the right, but the next shot is harder from there. Many players will end up in the water on this one.
Holes 15 and 16 are back-to-back woods shots. Both shots require exacting precision to get through the woods.
Hole 17 is the third woods shot in a row, but it has a large tree growing on a slant around 3/4 of the way to the basket.
Hole 18 is another short skill shot. At just 120', the hole might look easy on a scorecard, but don't be fooled! The basket is right on the edge of the creek. Any shot that goes one foot too far will be in the water. A short hyzer or fading straight shot will place you in moderately good position for birdie, but any power on the shot will send the disc in the water.
Hole 19 has a wider gap than most holes and an actual open fairway. The throw goes over an oxbow lake that swallows shots which hit the trees to the right of the fairway. The basket is back down in the trees next to the creek.
Hole 20 is a signature finish! The basket is right at 300' up on a huge mound with an oil well pumpjack toiling away beyond. Nothing says Texas like fresh crude and a ranch! The hole plays out of the trees and back into the pasture and parking lot. As with any mound basket, a missed putt will sail or roll back down the far side leaving you no closer to the basket than the first shot. This is the final memorable hole, and a great ending to a brutal round of disc golf.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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