West Thom in East Conn
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Even amount of open/wooded, "pyramid" (~half 200'-300', ~third 300'-425', ~remainder up through 650') of distances, and blend of right/left/straight off the tee, creates a varied course which should appeal to a broad spectrum players - something for everyone, without too much of anything.
Single tee (a bit on the short side)/basket (a bit of the old side) position.
Course is set in the partially wooded (smaller, thinner trees, for the most part), partially open, flood control plain (so not too much elevation change available) of West Thompson Lake, which forms the eastern border of the last few holes. The water potentially comes into play on 14-17, especially on numbers 14 (sits behind this downhill basket) and 16 (basket practically surrounded by it!). Riprap flows along the entire right-side of uber-long #10, at times squeezing the fairway, with woods and marshy area to the left. You'll even have a mini-swamp to throw over on #12. For the wooded holes, some have scattered trees, creating a number of small throwing lanes, while others tend to form a single/wider tunnel.
Cement tees (plenty wide, but a bit short), and teesigns. Scattered picnic tables and trashcans. Between the map and the well-worn paths, navigation was simple enough for this first-time visitor, but some comments include:
• the map suggests a gentle right-turner for #3, but the left-turner I threw led to a birdy.
• from basket-8, walk straight ahead, into the woods to find tee-9 (you'll pass tee-14 on the way, to the right)
• Basket-9 is NOT in the open, as the map indicates, but is now in the woods, to your left.
• From basket-12, into the woods to your left to play number-13, then back out into the open for tee-14.
Favourite hole: #16, despite the chance of a wet disc!  A long (400'+) open hole, with a gradual loss of elevation, and a bit of a squeeze (bushes/tree) at approximately the midpoint. Basket is located towards the end of a small peninsula which composes the last ~1/3rd of the hole, making one definitely pause for thought before making one's approach shot.
A very solid course, requiring a well-rounded game, offering several challenging greens - definitely worth a stop if passing nearby.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Frankly I do give a dam
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: West Thompson Lake is another course set along the shores of a New England dam site. It's also a rare New England course that has a pretty even split of wooded and open holes.
The wooded holes are all fairly short, under 300 feet, but pars are not gimmes. Most of the holes have a tight line for birdies and a safer, less direct line. The open holes have several long par 4's that require some thought about where your drive and approach end up. Unlike Buffumville (its dam cousin to the north), the rip rap rocks only come into play on one hole, which is nice for the health of your discs.
The signature hole is probably 16, a 419-foot downhill hole onto a peninsula. A clump of trees and thick bushes split the fairway about 225 feet from the tee. A well placed short drive can leave you a good look at 3, but if you got for the birdie, you can easily end up in the water or in some thick rough. I do wonder if the tee should be moved up a bit, as the chances of getting a birdie on this hole see so low that few would go for it (but then again, I'm not very good).
Hole 14 is the only other one where water comes into play. It's a 220-foot downhill shot that is technically an ace run, but you'd never got for the ace because the lake is 10 feet behind the basket. I like this hole for the most part, but I could see a missed putt rolling quickly into the water (which apparently isn't very clean).
Another good hole is 7, a pretty open horseshoe-shaped hole. This is one that tempts overconfident players to throw a huge anhyzer or forehand to go for the birdie, but doing so can leave you behind a grove of trees protecting the basket. I like when a designer can take a wide open hole and wring some risk/reward from it.
Navigation is good. I only needed the map once or twice. There are no "next tee" signs, but the trails are broken in pretty well. Tee signs show distance and the general fairway contour, but they could be better in showing where the basket is relative to the tee and the fairway(s).
Cons: There is a bit of elevation here, but not much. It is too bad that the dam could not have been used for a good downhill bomb.
Most of the holes are perfectly good, but not particularly memorable. There are worse things in the world than that, though.
There is just one set of tees, and it doesn't appear there are alternate basket locations, so I could see the course getting slightly repetitive.
I played on a beautiful early November day, but I could see the grass getting long on field holes during the summer.
Other Thoughts: This course ate me alive on my first round because my accuracy wasn't there (no complaints there). So in spite of the shorter holes in the woods, they are no cakewalk.
The scenery, design, and terrain don't quite match Buffumville (the most logical comparison given the nearby location and the dam-oriented design), but this is a solid course where big arms and technical players can compete on an even field, and where the chances of a lost disc are low.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course has a nice mix of short, technical, wooded holes and long open shots. There is a nice use of water on a few holes and they are all different (peninsula, behind the basket, and the side of the fairway.)
- some picnic tables and garbage cans
- scenic and clean
- nice hand made tee signs
- well worn in fairways
- the limited elevation was used
Cons: The directions take you to a parking area near hole #6. I checked the map and saw that there was parking near #1 but we walked there because we were already geared up.
-short tee pads make you start on natural ground before entering the concrete
- very swampy areas
- "No Swimming/Wading signs where my brother threw his disc in :(
- walkway bridge had some bad boards
Other Thoughts: My favorite hole is probably not the signature hole of the course, I liked #12 because it was unique to any other hole I've played. There is a walkway over a swampy area to dry area where the tee is, throw threw a tight area over more swamp. Don't hit a tree or it could go anywhere. Loved it!
Nice course, just check out a map before arriving so you can park at hole #1.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
Another Dam course
Pros: The pin position makes somewhat boring holes challenging: fifteen comes to mind here, long straight shot with the basket right in front of some bushes on a small hill. On the water holes there is a very good use water OB and the pin placement is optimal there. A really good mix of holes and distances make the course less monotonous than it could be. Hand made tee signs are clear and very helpful. There are concrete tees on about half the holes. There are trash cans on two of the holes, some scattered picnic tables, and a welcome board near hole one. Some of the views (hole sixteen basket) and wildlife is pretty cool too.
Cons: The navigation, even with a map, is a little tricky. The tee sign at two holes were missing. The natural tee pads are very uneven. The concrete pads are very small as well. The paths between the holes are pretty overgrown as well.The baskets in the woods are hard to see; a cone on top of the basket would help out immensly. The grass throughout the course, including the fairways is at least lower shin high. There are no next tee signs; at least none that I saw. Hole eight to nine took me forever to find. There is a crazy amount of bugs when you play close to the water.
Other Thoughts: The directions take you to hole six. I would suggest you start play there.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
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