I got out of the car and thought “Whaaaa?”
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Four Lakes Recreation is a weird course. Basically it is a small ski hill with baskets scattered around. Not a lot in the way of trees, mostly just a big open hillside. When I got out of the car, I instantly decided I was going to hate it.
#1 and #2 shoot up the hill with OB to the right with a nasty sinkhole (don't ask me how I found out about the sinkhole) past the OB fence. #3 is a blind downhill anny shot. #4 shoots back up to the top of the hill, #5 shoots across the top of the hill with a steep drop off on either side, #6 & #7 shoot back and forth across the hill, #8 is a dink downhill shot and #9 is a big 400' shot back across the bottom of the hillside. Other than #3 it was basically point and shoot golf with no obstacles other than the elevation and wind. It was strangely fun. Bad shots (and even not so bad ones) often went waaayyy down the hill for comic effect. For classic disc golf course design and difficulty it would rate very poorly, but for fun factor and uniqueness I would rate it very highly.
Cons: The main groan factor is that you don't throw off the hill. When I got out of the car I though "Well, at least we will get to bomb one off the hill." Then I was playing and having a good time and almost got to where I liked the place when #6 shoots across the hill and I realized "Hey, wait a minute…we don't get to bomb one off the hill? THAT STINKS!!!"
The tees were natural and most of them were on the hillside, so footing on the tee was meh. Some of the tee signs were in the way as well.
The one shot that does go downhill (#8) is a dinker with a table and a grill, then a building and parking lot past the pin. If you don't know how to throw downhill (and this is Chicago where there are no hills) you could easily blow way past the pin into the parking lot.
Hole #9 is too close to the volleyball area. Given that it is a long open hole, those are the type of holes where people throw all over the place. It's a bad design for the type of use that area has.
Given that the course was mostly wide-open, it would have to be considered a recreational design. There wouldn't be a ton of challenge in it for and Advanced-level player. We also had a couple of "which basket are we throwing at?" moments since everything was just sitting out there. From #3's tee the only basket you can see is #9, so it would be easy to just throw to it.
Other Thoughts: In the end I didn't hate Four Lakes. It was weird and silly and quirky and fun. It was worth the trip for me. I'm not sure how often I'd play here if I was local, but it was worth it to me to watch my drive on #6 flip and glide hilariously off course. It was a fun round. I can see how it might not be for everyone, and some people might absolutely hate it. I think it was unique enough that I'd say you need to come find out for yourself.
Note: The ropes for the ski lift were in place the day I was there, and on the first throw of the day Jukeshoe slid his drive right between two ropes that were no more than a couple of inches apart. If you are there when the ropes are up, I dare you to duplicate.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Where's the Downhill Bomb?!?! Geez.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - This quirky niner plays up, along, and (to an unfortunately small degree) down a large grassy ski hill.
- No trees in play except a couple of brushy patches off the fairways on #'s 2 and 3, and the large mature tree by #8's basket. During certain times, one must avoid snow fences and skiing paraphernalia such as tow ropes and the like. I imagine during peak ski conditions, the disc golf course is closed or severely limited in operation, but that's just a guess.
Where trees DO come into play, they do so in a pretty awesome manner for a course of this nature. The trees, brush, and small stream occuping the severe drop-off to the right of #2's fairway is hilariously epic in scope of punishment. The bottom has the look of an area where bums lurk, waiting to prey on wayward discers that occasionally happen along, while the chance of a successful recovery shot are very slim to none.
#3 forces a big annie (RHBH) around a much fairer form of punishment represented by the other patch of trees on site.
- Good elevation, with several shots back and forth the hill laterally. The pin positions accentuate the elevation when this course is at its best (e.g., #'s 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and espeically 8). Elevation down out of the park (#'s 3 and 5) creates ridiculously harsh (bordering on the hilariously absurd) punishment for slightly wayward shots. It actually adds to the pucker factor to some small degree. "Don't go over the low fence,
out of the park, down the steep hillside, over the parked cars, through the parking lot, and into the apartment buildings...."
- Decent signage helps navigate the open area where several baskets could be the next pin. Natural pads in pretty decent shape. Each hole has a small concrete marker with the hole number in addition to the signs.
Cons: - With the small downhill touch shot from #8's tee, no big downhill bomb is required. A total wasted opportunity for a course possessing one of the biggest bits of elevation in the immediate area. Boo, I say!
- If this course ever gets busy, watch out for other discers, as the course winds back and forth across the open hillside. Sand volleyball pits located to the right of #9 also look as though they conflict with the
course at times.
- #8, while a fun shot, seems to carry a fair risk of sailing into a sort of maintanence area, creating a potential safety hazard.
Other Thoughts: - A scenic view of the lakes and surrounding area awaits at the top of the course.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Don't, Don't, Don't. The only pro to this course is that it has baskets.
Cons: Almost everything. Please. . . . for your own good, don't even think about it.
They build a disc golf course on the side of a sled hill and some sand vollyball courts. . . . . .WHAT? The only challenge was for me to stop myself from falling asleep. Why would they do that to disc golf?
Other Thoughts: Once again, NO
4 of 13 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
different, and surprisingly fun
Pros: -Offers a ton of elevation, something which is almost entirely lacking from many of the other 9-holers in the region.
-Pleasantly suprising how much challenge the elevation adds, given that most of the holes are very open.
-Elevation used moderately well, at least from a variety standpoint, with a mix of uphill, downhill and cross-slope holes.
-Good signage, showing tee layout (which can keep you from accidentally throwing to 9's basket from tee 3) and, always one of my favorite things in a course sign, where the next tee is.
-In very good shape: shiny baskets, undamaged signs, trash cans here and there, neatly mown grass.
Cons: -Most of the holes are way too open, with the only obstacles being poles (very much like telephone poles). Holes 2-3 and 8 involve some trees, and 5 has several lift operator huts while 9's got the bleachers by the volleyball courts at the bottom of the hill. I think that's pretty much it.
-The volleyball courts create two problems: 1) if many of them are in use I think hole 9 would be simply too dangerous to play, and 2) I suspect they're the reason this hill course is missing a major downhill bomb, as they'd be even more at risk of some, shall we say, collateral damage. What's especially galling about this is that those two problems seem kind of at odds- if you're going to have a hole with a lot of danger of hitting bystanders, at least make it an exciting hole!
-Definitely not a lot of distance, although the elevation can make some of the holes feel a little longer. Hole 9's the only longshot, and it's the hole you're most likely to have to skip if you're worried about hitting volleyball players/spectators.
-The elevation was not always used to best effect on every hole. Two of the uphill shots are nothing but throwing up the hill- no obstacle (other than the minimal poles), so almost a straight shot up. And the one straight downhill shot was shortish, and had buildings beyond it discouraging a truly soaring throw.
-The signs seem to be of the same variety as those at Westchester's course, which have not withstood the test of time. I wouldn't be surprised if half of them have broken off in 4 years or so.
-Unleveled, grassy tees.
Other Thoughts: Despite the flaws, I had a better time than I'd been expecting, having read the other reviews before going. Holes 2-3, 5-6 and 8 will keep me coming back to this course periodically.
Admittedly, a lot of what I liked was simply the contrast between this course and a lot of the flatland 9-holers in the region. I kept mentally tallying up courses I'd choose this one over- Westchester, Lombard Common, Woodridge, Elk Grove Village, Roselle, IIT- even though technically speaking some of those are better courses than this one.
Also, I'm more a technical player than a distance player, so the overall shortness was compensated for by how the elevation came into play (on most of the holes), as far as I was concerned. That's purely subjective, so not everyone will feel the same.
I did not experience much in the way of pedestrian obstacles on my visit. In fact, most of the time we were there the only other people in sight were another disc golfer and a guy trimming the brush along hole 2.
In summary, I'd recommend anyone in the area go to this course to try it out, as long as you're not expecting anything truly exciting. I think most players will be amused enough at the elevation and the variety it offers from other local courses that they will not regret the one trip, and from that one trip you can decide for yourself if (like me) you want to go back from time to time. I would not recommend anyone go out of their way to visit this course, though.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is definitely a unique experience for someone who plays a lot of flat, Illinois 9-holers.
While there isn't much distance here, the elevation provides a little challenge for experienced players, and provides for a little punishment on bad shots. The course also incorporated some trees on a few holes adding a little challenge... especially #2 which is probably the course's best hole.
The baskets and signs are all in great shape, and navigation is fairly simple.
Despite it's simplicity the course is in good shape and it's just kind of cool to play a course with this type of elevation in the Chicago suburbs.
Cons: This is basically a bunch of baskets on the side of a big hill. It's nice that they put a course in, but there isn't really enough land here to make a very good course.
The elevation presents the only legitimate challenge for experienced players. A few random obstacles dot the fairways of most shots, but very little line shaping or creativity is required here.
As other users have mentioned, the tees are grass and not flattened, so many shots require you to throw on an uneven surface. You probably won't need a huge run up on most of these shots, but it's still not ideal to have to throw on a big slope.
I played on a friday evening and there were a LOT of oblivious dog walkers and sand volleyball players around the hill, so you will definitely have to watch out for people here.
Other Thoughts: I didn't want to call this a con, but on #3, the basket for #9 is visible from the tee, but not the #3 basket which lies about 15ft farther to the right, so be careful to avoid throwing at the wrong basket.
If just for the novelty, I thought this course was a pretty neat change of pace for the area. By no means is this a technically demanding course or anything that will challenge an intermediate player, but it's pretty fun to play a round or two if you find yourself in the area.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Fun elevation, silly course
Pros: The course plays on a small ski hill, so there is some nice elevation here. Only two of the shots are flat, and one of those is across the top of the ski hill with a drop off on either side, keeping it a little more interesting. There are some steep uphill shots, and a couple fun downhill holes for some variety. Holes 2 and 3 bring some woods into play, and the rest have light poles and ski hill equipment as obstacles to shape shots around. There are basic tee signs with accurate distance and layout, and the flow of the course is easy to follow. The chainstar baskets are new and in great shape.
Cons: The course is short and not very challenging. Despite the ski hill equipment, most of the holes feel wide open, and only have elevation as any kind of obstacle. The uphill holes are decent, but both downhill holes are short and don't offer any chance to rip a shot down the hill. Many of the holes play very close to one another, and to picnic areas and volleyball courts, making for some potential safety issues on a nice day. There are also people who use the hill for exercise, so you may have to wait on them going up and down the hill across several fairways. None of the tees are level, they are just whatever grassy spot someone picked for a tee, so the footing is quite bad. From 3s tee, the basket you can see is 9, basket 3 is further to the right past the fence.
Other Thoughts: This course did a pretty decent job with the land available, but it ends up being no better than the many other mediocre 9 hole courses around despite the elevation. Beginners will enjoy the course, as it's not too long, and brings more hills into play than any of the nearby courses. More experienced players won't find much challenge, and will likely be frustrated by the very sloped tee areas. If you happen to be in Lisle, it's an ok place to get a round in, but don't go out of your way for this one.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: The Four Lakes recreation disc golf course is built on a landfill ski-slope (think bunny hill). I was excited to play this course because it had the potential for something not seen in many courses in the Chicago area, elevation. The course features uphill holes, downhill holes, and some playing across the slope. The baskets are new and good quality, I believe they are Chainstars. The signs are fairly descriptive, with drawings of obstacles (when there are any) and what seems to be accurate distances. The course routing is intuitive. Most of the baskets are located on a slope, making rollaways a concern. There is some variety in distance with holes varying from about 200' to 420'.
Cons: This course is mostly open. Only holes 2 and 3 have much in the way of obstacles. One the other holes, the only things to make you think about your line are the rope tow poles, light poles and a few lift operator huts. Whoever designed this course has either never played DG or is a beginner only exposed to crappy Chicago area nine hole courses. All of the tees are grass and have not been leveled. So the uphill holes have tees that are sharply sloped uphill and the holes playing across the hill have tees sloped left to right or right to left. It is very hard to get a good run up on any of these holes. At the front of the tee is a 2' square piece of concrete with the hole number painted on. This seemed odd as there are already signs and the concrete squares are much to small to use as a tee. There are a lot of other users of this space, creating waits and danger for unsuspecting volleyball players and those that run up and down the hill. Hole 5 which plays along the flat top of the hill is especially dangerous as a shot that goes only 30' or so to the right of the target will land in a parking lot, below and behind the ski hill.
There is no true downhill bomb. The aspect that I was most looking forward to here was a long downhill hole or two. Only two of the holes play downhill, hole 3 is about 270' left to right over a fence and some small trees and hole 8 is straight downhill at about 215'. So there is no chance to open up and crush one from top to bottom. To me this is unforgivable as this piece of land is screaming for this type of hole. Watch your step if you throw into the brush to the right of hole two's fairway, there is a big dropoff just a couple feet into the woods.
Other Thoughts: To me this course was sort of interesting due to all of the rollaway possibilities and the uphill holes. I was really disappointed by the tees and the lack of a long downhill shot. The land offered so much more potential, I really want to work out some alternate tees to get the most out of this course.
6 of 8 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: * Very easy to navigate
* The entire course is built on the ski hill/bump so you get a good workout just walking the 9 holes. The elevation changes are some of the most drastic and can provide a bit of a challenge.
* Not too many ways to lose a disc
Cons: * The entire course is built on the ski hill/bump so you get a good workout just walking the 9 holes.
* Lots of light poles on the ski hill that serve as obstructions
Other Thoughts: Holes 1 & 2 use the woods which looked pretty dense. Hole 5 is on the ridge of the hill so if you pull it left you are going to be chasing it down the hill/course. Go to the right and it goes over a hill straight into a parking lot. I imagine a few cars will eventually have a few broken windows.
* Everything was a par 3 with the exception of 9 which was a 4.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - There are some holes that make great use of the moderately sized ski hill. Three pretty good upshots, especially compared to any local courses.
- Decent use of the forest area on the first three holes, including a semi-tucked basket, and a major obstruction on another.
- One open bomber hole over 400'
- Nice baskets, natural grass tee areas clearly marked with signs.
Cons: - The length of the course suffers as a result of many volleyball courts on an already smallish hill. One hole is 420' the next longest is a downhill 277'.
- Hole 9 goes very close to the volleyball courts, and was surrounded by benches the last time I was there. Probably unplayable if park is in use.
- Almost all shots are wide open, with man-made skiing hardware being the biggest obstacles.
- A lot of holes just go across the hill, so there is little elevation change and just a tilted fairway.
Other Thoughts: EDIT: The first time I played, I missed the basket for #9 because it was surrounded by people. It is over 400', I gave bad info at first. Not sure if this helps or hurts the course, due to its location...
- Course is set up on a small ski hill, next to some volleyball courts. The first two holes are uphill with a pretty big dropoff to the right woods. #3 is a downhill shot that has a forest to go around or over. #4 is a pretty good upshot, definitely great for the area. #5 is a flat shot on the top of the hill; throwing to the left will put you way down the slope. #6, #7, and #9 are more or less flat shots, with the slope left to right more than up and down. #8 is a short toss off the hill and around some trees.
- In the map in the files, if it's still there, red is up, yellow is flat, and blue is more or less down.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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