Well Aged, Partly
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: The best part of Cedar Hills is definitely the stretch of holes at the end. The fun starts at 15, a long, narrow downhill drive where going off the fairway will certainly kill your score. 16 is easily my favorite on the course. It's a narrow shot at the start bu the finish is to the right and uphill. Parking one on the ledge to the right of the fairway is both fun and rewarding. The penultimate hole is a quick uphill joint that is shaped nicely.
That's an example, but the hole design here is generally good. It has all the trappings that are expected from a North Carolina course but it also has a few other things on the table. There are some open field shots. (One straight and uphill, another with a protected uphill green, another that requires a significant left hook to park) There is a serious water carry. Still it brings all the technical shots through heavy woods that most seek out in this area.
It all makes for a ton of variety. There are elevation changes large and small. There are holes that finish in either direction and there is a bunch of different distances that need to be hit accurately.
Cons: The amenities, however, are terrible to non-existent. Tees? Some of them are fine, but many are the Kentwood variety.(read: worthless. I'll tee off on the grass, thanks.
Teesigns? I can see where they once were. There are metal posts where signs are supposed to go. No signs though.
Bagracks? Not that I require this but it's just sad. The posts put in for bag hangers look quite new and most of them are already missing the hooks.
Navigation aids? There is one next tee sign. Most of the other holes follow an intuitive path but there are at least five times that I would have been lost without a map.
It's also slightly an issue that when one finds a tee, one is not sure whether it is the far tee, the short tee, or both. On holes where there are two tees, finding the other one is a challenge.
The other problem is that the path from the green frequently dumps you out on the middle of the next fairway. If there is someone playing ahead of you, you can unwittingly be in the line of fire.
Other Thoughts: It's an old course and in many cases the extras for the course have been outdated or ravaged by time. But the holes have aged well. If you can bring a map and are ok with an occasional bad tee/blind throw, you will have a great time.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Good use of elevation
- Great tee pads
- Extremely fair
- Good mix of holes
- No bad holes
- Practice basket for putting
- Get's lots of play
Cons: - Not very scenic
- Tee signs are eitehr damaged / missing
- Somewhat difficult to navigate
- Very busy park
Other Thoughts: Overall, this is a just good solid course. This is the type of course that you don't get overly excited to play, but you don't mind playing it either. The shots are fair, are very unique to each other and require a lot of different discs to be used off the tee (in 18 holes, I throw 13 different discs off the tee). The course is very shaded, so on hot days, it's a good place to play.
It's a fun course to play that still challenges you, but doesn't destroy you, so to speak. If you are in the area, check it out. But don't make a special trip to play it.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Fun course needs love.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Raleigh's best course in town!
- Great elevation changes.
- True water hole.
- Generous par lengths. (See cons)
Cons: - Signage missing on many of the holes.
- At times this is a problem considering
how much elevation change there is on
the course. No sight of the basket without
trekking up the fairway.
- No direction given to next tee at most baskets.
- We slowed the people behind us a few
times asking where we needed to go for
the next tee. A simple arrow here and
there would help the occassional
confusion. Some of the next tees are
across parking lots, etc.
- Generous par lengths.
- While this is also a pro, considering that
it made for a good looking scorecard, I
would consider a few of the holes to be
shorter than their designated par. The
first par 5 left my friend shooting birdie.
It was only his second time ever playing,
so this seems to give advantage to
unseasoned players. In addition, a few of
the holes that would clearly seem to be
par 3s were instead par 4s due to a slight
- Trash cans needed more often.
Other Thoughts: Besides the course's need for signage and garbage cans, I loved the layout. The last time I played this course I had no idea what I was doing in the sport. Now that it has become a passion of mine, I can really respect the design and use of elevation at Cedar Hills. Most of my DG time in Raleigh has been spent at Kentwood Park, but after Cedar Hills there's no turning back. Everyone in town should be thankful to have such a fun and challenging layout nearby!
That being said, the course is in poor shape nearly every time that I visit. Apparently Raleigh doesn't have much of an active DG club, otherwise this course could look as nice as it plays. Over three years, why isn't new signage in yet? With it being such a mature course, I'm sad to see it look so raw every time that I visit. Correct tee pads should be marked where there are multiples, clean up and add a few more benches, signs at the tees, and possible repaints for the basket stripes should be considered. This course is too fun and important to Raleigh disc golf to see in consistently sad shape. If RDGC steps it up here, I could easily award the course a 4 out of 5.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Some super wooded holes, poorly upkept due to area
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Pretty decent mix of hole type, although predominantly wooded. The wooded ridges on holes 12-18 are the greatest on the course and some of the best in the area. #9 and 11 offer an open hole, and also some elevation so they are not boring. #9 also has a road on the right that should be played as OB, and going long on #11 could put you OB in a parking lot or softball field on the right. The overall play of course offers a good mix of left/right/straight holes, with both gradual and drastic direction changes.
The wooded ridges that make up this park are prime for disc golf. You get some slight uphill and downhill, some halfpipe style fairways, and opportunity to place pins in risky areas for rollaways.
Downhill tunnel style holes present themselves on 10 and 15. Both around 300' or so, they require a nice touch shot to thread the needle downhill and not float high or into the thick rough on either side.
A few risky greens can be found, but there could be so many more. #1 and #16 had good risky greens (both on the same ridge). Alternate pins would throw in some
Lots of small things made for some memorable holes and I'd say two signature holes (12 & 16). #12 was a great 370' slight downhill through a bit of a washout style ravine, like a halfpipe style fairway. You'll need a bit of an S-curve, but then not too much fade to the left because the super busy road could come into play. #16 is the best on the course, playing uphill along a ridge running the entire right side, and thick rough and OB the entire left side. Then the green is protected by large pines, AND it is on a slope for risky rollaways! #13 is a nice long uphill hole that allows you enough room to work your drive for some distance without kicking into the thicker woods, but then funnels down a narrower tunnel to the green (#18 is similar). #7 offers a throw completely across a nasty murky pond to a pin perched close to the edge. Easy straight midrange throw, but lots of psychological risk. #5 has a great big tree framing up the approach to the green and some tennis courts right that could be OB. #17 is a nice tight uphill hyzer off the long tee, but not Winter Park tight. #8 throws across a transmission line right of way and a steel lattice tower.
Cons: Location smack in the middle of the city. All the noise really detracts from a peaceful round and being able to lose yourself. The road along hole 12 is super busy and noisy, and can be heard thru hole 15. the entire park is in the middle of residential area, notably a backyard close to pins 3 and 4, and a house complete with incessantly barking dog on hole 9.
Vandalism. Lots of broken signs, busted up baskets, burned things, graffiti, etc.
Tee signs consisted of a mixed bag of styles and most were vandalized in some manner and unreadable, while a few were just missing. Good tee signs with distance and a depiction of the hole are a minimum in my mind. Extras like great graphic, elevation, etc are bonus points.
It appeared to me that there was only one pin position. I did see some extra sleeves on a few holes, but due to horribly disfigured, vandalized, and missing signs, it was tough to figure out what was really available with the hole design.
Navigation was a bit tough. Not that it will ever be a problem again, but something even simple like tape or paint on the basket pointing the way to the next tee would be useful.
It appeared that there was only one tee on most of the front 9 (except #8), and there were 2 tees on most of the back nine (except 14, 17, maybe more). I guess I didn't pay close enough attention, but this mix of tees was odd to me, could be confusing for a new player or any player, and is difficult to play especially because the tee signs were so beat up.
Other Thoughts: I played whatever long tees I could find and from what I could tell, there was only one pin placement. Playing #16 tee safari style to pin #1 would be a neat hole. Rating this course is extremely difficult for me. It has a lot of good character, fun and even gimmicky things, and pretty good balance and variety. But the location sucked and contributes to vandalism which really takes away from the course with missing tee signs, and your ability to enjoy your round. Here is a prime instance I wish for a 0.25 point scale because a 3.25 would fit well. But, I think I'm gonna be generous. I did not regret playing here on my business travels at all. It felt great that I squeezed in a round here prior to my flight. Relative to all other courses I've played and reviewed, it falls in better as a 3.5. Go early in the morning on a weekday and you'll probably enjoy the seclusion and the round a bit more than a evening or weekend round. Without many more alternate pin placements introducing some guarded and risky greens, and a full set of 2 tees for more spread in skill/challenge, this course can't earn a 4.
I'd say this is a White/Blue skill level course. I never play as well my first time through a course, but it didn't challenge me too bad to consider it purely Blue.
There is a nice playground for kids to enjoy. I saw many parents there with kids on the morning I played.
(The order of favorites on my Raleigh trip is as follows - UNC, Leigh Farms, Harris Lake, Cedar Hills, Zebulon, Middle Creek, and Valley Springs. UNC and Leigh farms were runaway winners but with vastly different reasons. Harris Lake was repetitive being almost all wooded, but real fun to play and lots of risk. Cedar Hills, Zeb, and Middle creek were all tied around the average for different reasons. Valley Springs was very fun, but repetitively grueling.)
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Partly wooded, partly open
Pros: Nice mix of open and wooded holes. Nice mix of left to right and right to left holes. Overall a mid length course with only a couple holes that really requires some length. Otherwise, bring your Rocs and mid range discs that you can control with precision. The water hole provides a very nice challenge from the pro teepad. The back nine is very challenging and deuces are very tough to come by.
Cons: A couple holes of "chuck and pray" (defined as holes that are wooded without a distinct path to the basket. No real way to play only 9 holes as the 10th teepad is far from the parking lot. Generally gets pretty crowded, especially on the weekends.
Other Thoughts: For the most part, another great course for dogs to go without leashes. If in the Raleigh area, it's definitely worth checking out.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Many good holes it starts out slow but gets tougher as you go along. Many difficult shots from the long pads.
Cons: Wear High socks or long pants, ticks are really bad. If you throw over the water and don't make it, kiss that disc goodbye.
Other Thoughts: Designed by Hall Of Famer Carlton Howard. Lots of Great Disc Golfers started playing Disc Golf here, including Future Hall Of Famer Larry Leonard
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I've seen this course in probably 4 or 5 different configurations since about 1987 when I first started playing tournaments.
The property occupies a hilly, wooded plot in a community park. There are other facilities, including a BBall court, Tennis Courts, a tot lot, and a baseball field, and the course weaves around them all without ever bringing any of them into play. From that standpoint - the course has always made very good use of the land available. There is a pond that comes into play on one hole (hole 7 I believe), and there is a creek that has the potential to come into play on a few holes, but it's rarely a concern.
There is a nice variety of shots required here - and for a long time, this was the toughest course in Raleigh. It's length is not really severe enough to keep up with disc technology - and as such - it has been relegated to local league play, and smaller events.
With control and accuracy at a premium, high tech plastic only goes so far on this course.
Cedar Hills is a great place to teach new players, and has other great amenities for regular play. It's located pretty conveniently (just a little outside the "beltline"), there are bathrooms, picnic tables, and plenty of parking.
Cons: The teepads are (mostly) made of old tree surround paver blocks - which drain well, but are a little small, and a little uneven. The newer teepads are poured in place concrete and are better than the old ones. The site seems to suffer from strong storms - as both hurricanes and ice storms have trashed the course multiple times - requiring relocation and re-design (funny though - every time it happens - the course gets better!)
Other Thoughts: Being in the woods - makes the course a nice shady walk. The hills are mild, so while they offer some challenge to some of the shots - they don't create a difficult walk. This is a course I've travelled to many times, so it's a little sad that it's no longer considered good enough to host the areas top events. But that's ok - it just means there's a quality place for the locals to play when the big event comes to town.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Nice, but could be maintained better.
Pros: Decent marking or easy to figure out, the first five holes are well marked with a map and descriptions, but the signage is spotty after crossing the road. Moderately challenging holes due to trees and elevations. Easy to get around and get to. Facilities available, etc.
Cons: Signage could be better on holes after the 5th hole.
The layout of the hole near the lake is not good at all; if someone isn't confident in throwing over a contaminated lake it's crappy to have to throw all the way around it.
Other Thoughts: Any other complaints are completely personal and had to do with the cold rain combined with the sand on some of the holes.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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