Disc golf on the Prairie
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course uses the elevation that is present very well. There are both uphill and downhill holes.
The fairways are mowed nice and wide and there is tall prairie grass on both sides for rough.
The course is well maintained and the tee pads are nice and wide. Some holes have a water threat with the lake surrounding a few holes.
There are some holes that dog leg left/right and holes 11-15 are wooded, bonus!!!
The baskets are painted white so they are easy to see and there is a good mix of short, moderate, and longer length holes.
Cons: There are no benches or trashcans on this course. Many of the tee markers don't have a number on them. Some of the later holes did have the hole numbers written on them with black sharpie.
There are a few holes that have a long walk between the basket and the next tee.
Wind will be a factor here. Some holes will be hot in the summer because of lack of shade.
The baskets could use a number on them. #4 cement tee was missing upon my visit.
Disc loss in the tall prairie grass is a good possibility, so playing at a time when the grass isn't quite as tall might be a good idea.
The walk from 18 to the parking lot is rather long.
Other Thoughts: This is a good solid course in a 3 course complex at the lake. Out of the 3 courses I played this one first. I really liked holes 1 and 2 and then the holes were very similar until you got to holes 11-15. Then I really enjoyed myself.
This is a course for the player that likes to grip and rip on several shots. Personally for me I would've loved to see more holes like 11-15, but I understand you can only use what is available and I feel like they did a good job here.
I have a hard time giving this course a 3.5 because I feel that there are some shots that are a bit repetitive and not having any signage hurts this one a bit in my books.
With that said its still a solid play. With a few upgrades it could easily pull itself up a .5 disc.
Come out to this 3 course complex and pay your $5 and plan on playing all three courses. You will get you moneys worth.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Diverse mix of holes, lot of tough shots, mix of long and short, perfectly maintained fairways, extrememly clean, beautiful setting
Cons: Chest high rough and some of the most dense undergrowth in the wooded areas I've ever seen. We spent a ton of time looking for discs.
Other Thoughts: We'll play this again in the future but probably stick with early spring, late fall or winter. It would probably be better in the summer after they cut down the rough for hay.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
More challenging than it looked
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: White baskets.
Some interesting shots.
Fairly easy to follow.
Doesn't require a huge arm.
Nice tee pads.
Tees (mostly) clearly marked.
More challenging than it looks.
Cons: A lot of risk of losing a disc for the level of course. There is lots of tall grass and lots of opportunities to have to search for your disc.
No signs at the tees.
The course appears to have been changed some, either dropping a hole or changing one to somewhere that I missed it. This also left two holes without tees.
Other Thoughts: There were enough open holes with lots of tall grass to get a little frustrating, though they were challenging. I eventually just started treating them like tunnel shots with ravines on either side instead of trees. (Also made me think seriously again of getting a Disc Beeper.) Some of the wooded shots were very interesting (11-14), as well as Hole 2 where you almost have to throw through a narrow gap or over trees. Several holes are close to water, making me wish I'd brought more than one disc that floats.
This is not a course that I recommend playing alone: Have friends with you and actively spot for each other. Otherwise, it was worthwhile, and I may play it again some time, after I play the other two courses, though.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: dickparker
Thanks for the review. I can understand that the grass can get frustrating. It was the one thing I had to accept if we were going to get three courses in the ground due to the hay lease and prairie grass. I will say if you play in the late September until late April you will find that they bail that grass and it is all cut low making it easy to get around without the worry of the grass. As far as the missing tee pads, the Parks dept. went through a complete change over and the new regime is less interested in the progress of the courses than the last group was. Hopefully we can get the course finished more like the other two.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Nothing good about this course
Pros: - Nice baskets
- Well maintained and clean
- Facilities are nice
Cons: - Tee pads are awkward to navigate. Some back filling would help these pads tremendously.
- The holes are very wide open and lack luster for the most part.
- The holes that do use the trees, are ridiculously designed.
- Quite a few tweener holes as well.
Other Thoughts: If you feel like throwing plastic around in an open prairie grass area, then you will like this course. It is a shame they couldn't make more use of the land that is there, as there is a ton of it. The course just feels like it was slapped together as an after thought.
If you are heading to Smithville to play these three courses, just skip this course and play Blackthorn and Woodhenge. You'll thank me later.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Fun on the lake
Pros: Pretty easy to follow layout. The baskets are all painted white so they are very easy to see through the wooded holes and not at all difficult to distinguish between the course next to it. My first, and only, time playing here was during the Paradise Diamond tournament and the course was in amazing condition. The fairways we freshly cut and the tall grass rough was tall so the fairways were nearly pristine. The course is very well designed with a great mixture of elevation changes, long vs. short length holes, open fairways, tunnel shots, and multiple routes off the tee. There is a road that cuts through the course that chokes a few fairways to add to the courses degree of difficulty.
By far the biggest pro was playing right off the lake and the views you have from several holes.
Cons: The major con was that the tee pads were shorter and round which limited the dynamic of some of your drive angles. After a few drives the length of the pads weren't as much of an issue but it did take a while to get used to.
There was a lack of tee signs on the course. Overall the course was easy to follow because of the fairways but I can imagine that if it hasn't been mowed for a while it can be pretty hard to find your way around.
Another, more minor con is the lack of trash cans. Please plan on pack up what you bring out.
It is a pay 3 play course but its $5 a day for parking and you have all three courses to play for that flat fee.
Other Thoughts: This was a fantastic course. it wasn't terribly long but it challenged almost every part of my game. In fact all three courses on the property are top notch and I cannot wait to get out there to tackle these beasts again. Don't forget to ask for a score card when you pay for your parking permit. It has all the courses and a map to follow.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Not The Easiest Course
Pros: Great Baskets. Easy to follow layout. Par 4's tough and fair. Good elevation use. 2 other courses at the park. I really enjoyed beaver creek. I was under the impression that this was the easiest of the courses and it is but it is not dinker. Longer par 3s and a couple of par 4s keep you on your toes. Of course there are some easier holes. We started on Hole 5 and I felt the middle 9 holes was a lot more fun than 16-18 and 1-4.
Cons: Teepads small and circular. No tee signs but i imagine they are soon to come since the other two courses have them. A couple of holes had no teepads.
Other Thoughts: I love tall grass. It shapes a course so it is not just a field. Also, when it is real tall it acts as rough for disc golf. Not a great run up trouble to find your disc. There is advantage of staying in the short grass.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Fun Course that needs some work
Pros: This course had a very diverse layout. It will require you to use almost every shot you have. Most of the holes in the front nine are fairly open while the back nine is much more wooded. Water is involved in the course design but really only if you take huge risks or have bad throws. Most of the water on this course is shallow and calm enough that it should be pretty easy to retrieve your disc if you do risk it. The baskets on this course catch discs well and are all painted white so you can tell between them and the other courses. My favorite holes would be 1,2, and 18. Hole 1 is a downhill shot at the lake. It is fairly short but you have plenty of land around the basket to keep it from going in. Hole 2 is a fun shot that requires you to go through a hole cut in the draw or up over it. It is pretty easy to get to with a overhand shot and I have birdied it both times. Hole 18 is a long hole that leads back out to an awesome view of the lake.
Cons: The tee pads on this course are horrible at the moment. They just poured concrete on circular tee pads but the pads are not long enough to get a run up especially since they haven't filled back in around the pads. Some construction is going on and hole four is in the very middle of it, so hole four still does not have a tee pad. There are no signs except for white poles marking the tee locations. There are no trash cans yet to speak of during the course. Holes 5, 6 and 7 have tall grass around them that can make finding your disc difficult and time consuming. 5 is a narrow path cut through this grass uphill towards the basket. 6 has a somewhat wider path that jumps into a decent clearing and 7 puts you between the road and the grass. 10 can be difficult to navigate without the map or if you are not looking ahead. The course still needs to be cleaned up some, There is a decent amount of thorn bushes and a lot of undergrowth that could be cleaned up a little. Also either hole 13 or 14 (can't remember) doesn't have a pad poured.
Other Thoughts: This course has lots of potential and will be a very good course when they finish. It just has not got there yet. When they do finish it will be a very nice place to go with the two other courses in the same park. Should make for a great day of disc golf. Also the park does not charge entry fee in the winter months so it is free to play then, but you will not get a course map because there is no guard on duty.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Good course with room for potential
Pros: I really enjoyed playing this course. Nice scenery with several holes by the lake. I really enjoyed the use of the land for this course. The lake made for some interesting shots as you had to worry about blow bys and really needed to make sure your hyzer came back for you. The course then took you on a counter clockwise loop until you ended up back at the parking area. Several holes were open fairways with a tree here or there to make you pick a different line. Many of these open holes had trees protecting the baskets as well. The back half of the course featured several shots in the woods. These holes were tight and technical and made you really throw on a rope. I also enjoyed the use of some dogleg rights on this course-a shot I personally find fun to throw. Overall I enjoyed the use of trees to make obstacles which made you have to be a little creative at times. Finding the next tee spot was easy as large white tubes sticking out of the ground were used as markers. There was a practice basket and a nice restroom right by the parking area. There were also many benches and picnic tables spread throughout the park. I believe it could be a nice place to enjoy a lunch between the front and back half.
Cons: My major con with this course was the tall grass. It has been raining here recently so I am really hoping this is the main reason why it hasn't been mowed. This problem can easily be fixed but really needs to be done to make this course enjoyable. The grass was about shin to knee height (I'm 5'10") throughout the majority of the course and any area not in the fairway had grass about waist height. The worst was the back holes in the woods. The grass here was waist high the entire hole and really made finding even a white disc in the center of the "fairway" (just guessing where it would be here as I couldn't tell) very difficult. The grass also was full of ticks. Long socks and some deep woods bug spray are highly recommended. Another potential problem with the grass is snakes. The lake has a tendency to be home to a lot of them and I personally saw 4 today while playing. I just don't want to see anyone getting bitten out there. Another problem I saw was the lack of good signage. A few holes had some pictures with distances on them but many were gone. The long grass and gentle hills made distances seem very deceiving to me personally and it would have been really nice to get a distance from teepad to basket to help. Lastly, there are currently no concrete pads. However, I do hear they are planning to pour some here in the near future.
Other Thoughts: This course is still under development and has some great potential to be a nice course for the players in the northland. Being that it is a newer course it was not crowded, in fact I was the only one there the entire time I played. I enjoyed a nice quiet round and found the area to be rather relaxing. I am an average recreational player and personally found this course very enjoyable. A more experienced and better player may find the open holes to be a little easy as it was easy to save a bad shot. Another thing to note is the wind coming off of the lake. It was rather calm when I played but the wind could really pick up over that water creating a much more challenging atmosphere. The course itself costs $5 to play. However I think this is the fee for getting into the area to use all of the lake features and not just the course. I personally am not a big fan of pay-to-play courses but I hope some of it goes into course improvements. When you pull up and pay at the guard shack I was given a map of the course. (Unfortunately still no distances) On the top of this map there was a little note saying that this was the first of three courses to go into this complex. I am very excited for the day I can come out and enjoy a nice full day of disc golf with maybe a lunch in between rounds. The surrounding areas was also very kid friendly and I feel this may be a fun place to get someone new into the sport. I can't wait to go out and give this one another shot-as long as they cut that grass!
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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