The gold standard
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: The course begins with six or seven holes with long, pleasant, tree-lined fairways that are not terribly wide. These are truly a test of how far you can throw with excellent placement. If you are the macho guy who only throws high-speed drivers off the tee, you are in for a humbling experience. The rough is not the worst I've seen by any means, but it will punish you. Many of these fairways also have small trees interspersed throughout the fairways, so playing multiple times will give you an idea of ideal landing spots for your next spot. You need to be thinking ahead.
Hole 8 changes pace in a dramatic way. It is over 1000 feet long down a gently rolling fairway. This hole gave me a feeling I usually only experience when skiing: the chuckling admiration of beautiful terrain you're about to rip through. Or in simpler terms, the feeling of "Whoa…really?" There is a pretty wide fairway to do your damage on, but it's thin enough that you need to keep it in control. You'll feel like a schmuck if you go in the rough and have a boring out shot on this hole. I'm anything but a grip-and-rip fanatic, and I loved this hole.
Hole 10 was one of my favorites, a long drive out to a left-sweeping fairway with an OB road on the right and a troublesome grove of pine trees to the left. They have no branches from the ground to about 4 feet, so you'll have a shot if you land in them, but it could be a forehand roller from your knees or a weird upside down shot. Fun hole.
The rest of the course features holes that are pretty similar to Granite Ridge: fairly long holes where staying on the fairway was crucial. Some of them were prairie fairways, others more wooded. Despite the monumental length, there were one or two ace runs as a nice respite.
Cons: Given the length, you never knew which position was in use, and you sure aren't going to walk these fairways before driving. Play this one more than once if time allows (I only got to play it the one time, unfortunately).
As with all the courses at Highbridge, the tee signs are mediocre. Some will show a straight shot when the fairway obviously bends. I'm skeptical of the distances shown (I think they underestimate the true distance). Some are faded and difficult to read.
All of the Highbridge courses have some issue with searching for discs. If you can play here with friends, do. I played this course more carefully and successfully avoided much of the tall grass, but it's not fun if you don't.
Other Thoughts: After playing Blueberry and Granite Ridge the previous day, I decided I was going to try to stay on the fairway no matter what, even if it meant a really unaggressive shot. I'm glad I did, and I'd recommend the same to anyone else. If you try to throw full drives, you'll end up in some bad spots and won't enjoy the course, and your score will suffer. I have never been so happy to shoot an 83.
I max out around 300 feet and don't usually enjoy ultra-long courses. I don't like playing in strong winds, and the day I played had sustained 30+ mph winds. And yet despite this, I had a blast playing this course. This is one that makes you realize what you need to do to get better. It's not about how far you can throw your warp-speed driver, it's about how far you can throw your putter and have a safe landing. If you have great long-distance accuracy with a faster disc, you just picked up some strokes.
I wish I could have seen the pros handle this at Worlds. And I can't wait to play it again.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
A slice of heaven
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Another amazing course at HH. Long and tests your game in every aspect, shots, stamina, and mind. Not much to say that others haven't.
Cons: ...........A couple bigger trash cans but I'm sure that would help the bears more then us.
Other Thoughts: It might not be prefect in every possible way but its as close to perfect as any course I've played,(91 and counting). If you haven't made it to HH plan a trip, pack lots of food and drinks. Come to a wonderful inviting complex. It might not be your perfect city park but guess what its better. Your more with nature and the peace in your soul. Take a few minutes away from the disc golf to take it all in.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Gold is a spectacular course. I have come up to Highbridge almost every year for about 6 years now (since I began playing disc) and Highbridge Gold was never a course I enjoyed a lot, until recently... now it is my favorite course on the grounds. Beginners Beware! Gold is not overly technical, just long. Pros will be challenged but should score under the posted par. There are multiple opportunities to rip drives into wide open fairways-. The first six holes are through the woods and so are holes 14 and 15. The rest of the course is fairly open and long- mainly 400+ foot holes.
•#8: 1400+ ft hole, wide fairway, slightly sloping downhill almost the whole way.
•#11: Basket near a bear den (I believe it is not active…)
•#16: 270 ft hole with an island green- surrounded by a moat
Bombs- opportunity to rip drives into wide open fairways- especially hole #8.
I've played this course about ten times ~6 different trips through varying times of the year and I don't think I've even seen another group on the course, let alone have wait for them on a hole.
Great tee pads- large and grippy.
John (the owner of Highbridge Hills) has golf carts available to rent for this course. It is a great course to kick back and drive to your disc- especially if you can bomb them.
Cons: Me being very picky- Hole 16 is not 100% surrounded by a moat. Actually there is a fairly wide strip of land in front of the green- I asked John to remove this and make it a true island green- tell John he should do this if you agree.
Other Thoughts: If you make it up to the Highbridge Hills complex, chances are you drove a long way, so it doesn't make sense to play just one course. The great thing about the courses at HH is that they vary in difficulty and styles, so pending on your skill level or what you're in the mood for, there is a course that will most likely fit your needs. As standalone courses, three are still absolutely amazing- Granite, Blueberry and Gold - if one of the courses doesn't satisfy you, you only have to walk a couple hundred feet to a totally different course- The Bear- long, tight and woodsy- very hard, Gold-very long, mostly open, Granite- mostly open, fairly long, Woodland Greens- short technical course through the woods, numerous ace runs, Blueberry- open and woodsy, some long, some short technical holes. The grounds are organic, beautiful and calm.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 2 Not
A terrific challenge
Pros: I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of this course. It was a long, grueling course that required multiple good shots on a lot of holes. Even though the holes were long most required me to throw something other than a distance driver off the tee so I could keep it in the fairway. You really have to be smart about your disc selection. There is one very long, open, downhill hole that allows you to bomb a drive or two as far as you can.
I know some people don't like how far from just about everything this course is located but I love it. There aren't many people there and you can just appreciate the natural beauty of the area.
Cons: Ticks are everywhere just like the rest of northern Wisconsin.
Other Thoughts: I know the course can be a bit swampy if they get a good amount of rain and its hard for one man to keep up with maintaining all those course but the conditions were great when I was there. Just lucky I guess, and because of that this is one of my favorite courses. High bridge is definitely worth the trip for an avid disc golfer looking for a challenge.
3 of 5 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I'm going to start out with this. If you have not been to Highbridge make your plans now. You are missing out if you have not been there. Plan to spend at least 3 days to enjoy what the golf offers.
Gold is exactly what it is designed to be. It's an absolute beast designed for the best players in the World. At the 2007 Pro Worlds the best round on this course was a 55. After you play it imagine shooting a 55 on this par 69 course.
That land has a great mix of rolling hills, open, woods, and everything in between. Although there are a handful of standard par 3 holes you get bombarded with par 4's and 5. #6 is an absolute monster of a par 6. Yes, Par 6!!!
Great long and level cement tee pads.
Awesome Innova Discatcher baskets.
Adequate tee signs with A & B pin locations and par.
I like the use of the elevated ball golf tee area. It makes for a great green on #9.
If you like throwing a power driver this is the course for you. You are going to get many chances to mash!!!
Along with the mashing you are going to get brutalized by some of the longest and nastiest wooded holes. 6 is just downright filthy!
The Island Hole on #16 is a great concept.
Cons: These don't hinder my rating of this course. Although not the best the tee signs could be upgraded to the best of the best.
Highbridge is a huge piece of property. Depending on when played the grass can be somewhat long. It depends on when John mows.
Other Thoughts: I absolutely love Highbridge. There is a course for everyone here. I have Blueberry, Gold, & Granite as 5 disc courses. It's my #1 favorite place to play disc golf. Keep in mind that this is in the middle of nowhere. Be prepared (food, water, etc...) and bring some good hiking shoes. Bring a friend and spot for each other. This is no walk in the park. I have spent over 2 weeks at Highbridge and the golf is fantastic!
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Highbridge Gold is very likely the longest 18 hole course I've ever played. If you play from the gold tees, the holes average around 550 feet, which is 200 feet more than I'm used to. But several of these shots are not just open field where you have to just bomb it. Some of them, like #6, play either 730 or 920 ft. through a wooded area. It's a very challenging and potentially frustrating course. My group and I were more frustrated than we were happy about our shots but we thoroughly enjoyed every second we were playing here. It really humbled us and taught us that we still have a long way to go...
Hole #8, in my opinion, was the signature hole at a distance of 1325 feet and justifying a par 6. It's a great feeling to crush a disc if you have some built up frustration from the prior holes, and this is the perfect hole to do it.
Gold is a perfect championship course and therefore warrants a perfect 5.0.
Cons: This is definitely not a beginner's course. If you can't throw above 300 feet consistently, this is not the course for you. If you're used to your local park where the holes vary between 150-300 feet, you're in for quite the surprise here.
Also, the Highbridge Hills Sports Complex in general is very far away from any stores or restaurant, so make sure you stock up for your stay with lots of food, water, alcohol, and that sort of thing.
Other Thoughts: The HHSC is an amazing place to go. The scenary is wonderful, the people you'll meet are amazing, and the courses here are nothing short of being the best in the world.
If you get the chance, say hi to John Jokinen, the owner and care taker, and thank him for everything he's done. He's a very nice guy who puts in a ton of time with the courses, the cabins, the honka house, and the entire site in general.
Feel free to message me about any of the courses or HHSC in general and I'll try my best to answer any questions. :)
14 of 15 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
No Fools Gold Here
Pros: I drove up to the Highbridge complex of courses fully expecting to be underwhelmed - sure they had bunches of courses, but were they really the cream of the crop? The answer is a confident 'yes' - these courses and the complex itself lives up to expectations!
Although Blueberry Hill is currently rated top dog at Highbridge, the Gold course managed to grab the top spot for me. The Gold course, while not having the variety of holes that Blueberry does, had the most consistency and challenge. Chuck Kennedy's careful design work and attention to detail really stands out on many of the par 4 and 5 holes. On each, I felt that I had several nearly equal options off the tee to mix and match with knowledge of course conditions and personal confidence. Landing zones are apparent but not easy to reach and plenty of opportunities are available for aggressive play or defensive play depending on player strengths and weaknesses. The Gold course will test not only the shots in your bag but knowledge of strategy. Liek Blueberry Hill, all staple shots will be needed for this course (and probably a few unorthadox when in trouble) and it will expose weakness with punishing rough and some well thought out elevation hazards. Blueberry isn't the only course with 'wow' - few tees impress and intimidate as much as the 1325' eigth.
Cons: Gold lacks a bit of the variety and accessibility of Blueberry and appeals to a slimmer range of skill levels. At the same time, part of what makes this course stand out so much is its consistency and unrelenting nature.
Other Thoughts: To anyone who is wondering if this place is worth a trip - definitely! Although I only had a day to play all of the courses, I feel like I could have easily spent a week here without getting bored. Camping, wilderness, golf carts, and tons of natural beauty all make this place one of the best destinations in disc golf.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 5 Not
Championship Course for sure
Pros: Absolutely everything is great-
- Nice views and surroundings
-A beautiful challenge
-Well cared for fairways and greens
Very long, but not dumb, not thought out long holes. Very well thought out.
-Carts available for rent.
-A very fun course to play
Cons: -Takes a while to play, but that's to be expected from this caliber of a course.
Other Thoughts: I would definately put this course on par with Blueberry in terms of quality. I enjoyed it very much and I thought 8 was just about the most beautiful hole I've ever played
3 of 8 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: With eight par 3's, seven par 4's, two par 5's and one par 6, this championship caliber course will put your game to the test. While it is a very long course, there are still some deuce possibilities on the par 3's. When you stop counting everything as par 3, you'll realize there are birdie opportunities on every hole. But to get birdies, you have to throw good skilled shots because there is a lot of risk/reward on this course. Placement is very important on many of the par 4+ holes so you have decide how aggressive you want to play and hope you're accurate.
Parts of some holes are open, but the majority of the course is wooded or has large mature trees to deal with. I like how the holes are mixed together forcing you to go from a long par 4 or par 5 to a shorter hole where accuracy really counts.
There is a good balance of hyzer and anhyzer shots here, with some holes requiring both to successfully navigate the long fairway. Elevation changes are plentiful and the overall design is fantastic.
Navigating the course is easy as there are next tee signs everywhere and maps are provided at the hilltop clubhouse. The concrete tee pads are in great shape. There is lots of landscaping that's been done here, especially with built up hills lined with large rocks. This pro par 68 course is well maintained and I just can't say enough good things about this course and the entire complex!
Cons: Some of the tee signs are sun bleached and difficult to read.
Other Thoughts: John has put innumerable hours turning this into the best place ever to disc golf and it shows. This is a top notch complex with a number of incredible courses, and there are more courses on the way. If you ever get a chance to make the trip up here, DO IT! Plan on spending more than one day because these courses are long, have lots of elevation changes and they will wear you down. And that's coming from someone who can play 4 rounds in a day no problem.
This truly is the mecca of disc golf!
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: It really is tough to find anything better - The Gold course is the most complete course I have ever played. Gold has significant elevation, small ponds, and nice fairways. The course exhibits true par 4's, par 5's, and even a monster par 6. The course has so many signature holes, including 3, 6, 7, 8, 11, 16, and 18. It offers an awesome challenge to the good disc golfer, and an impossible challenge for the weaker players. If you don't want a challenge then don't play here - the course will eat you alive. While there is a nice variety of some shorter and longer holes, the course features more of the longer holes. There are also two distinct set of tees, with a few more sets coming to create the Max Gold course, the longest course in the world.
Cons: Some of the tee signs are faded, but just make sure to get a scorecard in the pro shop before the round. This would actually be a major pro in my book - scorecards are available for every course. The Gold course is extremely tough - the fun factor for amateurs would be very low. I had a good time because I love a good challenge. The course is also hard to walk as it does feature some elevation.
Other Thoughts: It's really tough to beat what the Highbridge complex has to offer - the variety offered is top of the line!
9 of 13 people found this review helpful.
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