Room for improvement
2 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: The course plays through a nice park with a mix of open areas, mature trees and a few holes in thicker woods. Several holes have some nice risky water in play, a few basket positions next to water and a few drives that offer options to risk going in the water for a better chance at birdie. A few holes have some minor elevation changes that are used well to add some challenge and variety. Baskets are in good shape, and there are numbered posts at each tee.
There is pretty good length variety, with a couple longer holes that let you open up and drive if you can hit your landing zones. You'll need a variety of shots to score well here, with a balance of left and right turning holes and some interesting lines. One hole calls for an accurate drive to the mouth of a low ceiling tunnel, another has a straight shot between narrow rows of pine trees. I enjoyed the handful of unique hole shapes here.
Cons: There are some safety issues, with a few holes requiring walks back up the fairways and some tees that are in potential landing areas from other holes. The back 9 had a lot of walkers throughout, seems like that could be a major issue on a nice day. The road and parking lot come into play a little as well.
Navigation is rough here, several long walks with no signage. Without the map posted online it would be very difficult to find all the holes. The tees are mediocre, some were rutted out or unlevel. There are no tee signs, so with several blind baskets and multiple pin placements you'll end up doing quite a bit of extra walking to know where to throw. There are some areas on the back 9 where it seemed like the grass gets pretty long, that could get frustrating on the longer throws.
Other Thoughts: There is a lot of potential here, and some really cleverly designed holes. Beginners will find a few of the holes pretty tough, and the water a bit frightening perhaps, but it's not so tough new players will be too frustrated. More experienced players will find some nice challenges here and some very unique shots. With some work on tees, signage and navigation, this could be a really fun course that would be worth going out of the way for.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: * Picturesque park.
* The front half loops back to the parking lot, making "playing a quick nine" easy.
* Front nine is suited well for beginners.
* Good variety.
* Hole 14, a tough wooded gauntlet that you'll want to play again!
Cons: * Difficult to navigate the back nine, even with map (which appears to need an update). Even with yellow arrows in the ground pointing "toward" the next tee, finding a few of the tee pads may take a few minutes.
* A couple of the baskets are close to the lake, prompting one to possibly play safe on their approach instead of being aggressive.
Other Thoughts: I stopped to play this course on a trip from Tennessee to Missouri and was pleased with the course. Challenging but definitely playable.
Navigation/thoughts: The baskets for several holes appear to be moved and aren't accurately reflected on the map/photos. It would help to have a local describe some of the changes, but I'll do my best.
Hole #8: The basket appears to be moved back at least 150 feet along the edge of the woods.
Hole #11: Keep your tee shot to the right (away from the lake) and you'll be safe.
Hole #12: The basket appears to have been moved back and to the left.
Hole #13: Aim your drive to land in front of the telephone pole on the ground and you'll be in a good spot.
Hole #15: Difficult to know where the basket is from the teepad. Took me a few minutes to locate.
Hole #16: Couldn't find the new teepad that a previous reviewer referenced ... I threw from the old teepad. The basket is now farther back than the photo indicates.
Hole #17: The basket seems to be at least 700 feet from the teepad.
Hopefully some local players can clarify/correct these comments.
Fun course. Would love to pass by Highland and play again sometime soon...
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Silver Lake DGC
Pros: Silver Lake DGC is a very interesting course in a very scenic park where you will get a chance to "see it all" - from water, woods, hills and open spaces. You will use every disk in your arsenal as there is a lot of technical shots required.
The course is in great condition and will be amazing in the fall with the colors!
Print the map as you will need it. As mentioned many times, the flow between a few of the holes isn't marked at all and without the map, you are likely to get lost between a few of the transisitons esp. between 8 to 9; 9 to 10; 11 to 12; 12 to the new 13 tee area.
Wooden sign posts mark the natural tee area but distances and a map of the hole are always nice touches to help figure out where to go - esp. the first time playing a course (like us yesterday!)
This course has the most diverse set of holes I have seen to date on a course and that is a great plus.
Even though as beginners we all struggled with the back 9, we all agreed that we really liked the course and will play again without a doubt.
Cons: The map isn't correct for #2 as the tee area is right next to #1 tee area so you have to play 1 and then come all the way back to the start to play 2 - awkward start. If can, throw your tee shot on #1, then play hole #2 just to your left. Then go through the woods on your right to finish #1.
Be careful with your approach to 7 and your tee shot on 8 as the water is ready to swallow your errant disk!
There is a huge difference between the front 9 and back 9 from a skill and technical aspect - with the back 9 being much more demanding than the front we all found. While many of the holes are amazing (13 and 14 are fantastic tunnels to the pin), for beginners - like me - after playing the front 9 in 5 over and the back 9 in 18 over, the round became more and more frustrating as the course got longer and longer and more technical.
We all found the #11 Tee Pad to be super awkward and since we didn't know where the pin was, it made for an "interesting" tee shot. The pin is straight down in the woods about 40 ft to the right from the waters edge.
The new tee location for 13 makes this an impossible Par 3 as an absolute perfect drive is required in order to align with the 150 ft very tight tunnel shot required to get to the pin. Miss by a couple of feet and you are in the thick woods.
#14 has to be the signature hole and is an amazing visual tunnel hole in a pine tree stand but again, a super straight shot is required or else! However, just enjoy this hole as it is unique.
The new tee pad for 15 has been moved back and to the left and a huge tree limb is right in your path and it is very low.
The pin location for #16 was difficult to find for the first time and is tucked back into the woods with a very narrow opening.
When done with the long par 4 17th, just follow the path to your left across the street to #18 tee.
I would like a map at each tee sign to show the hole distance and pin locations as this is always a nice touch.
A practice basket is also another nice touch to help warm up and there is plenty of room near the 1st and 10th tee areas to install one. We just went over to the 18th basket to warm up since no one was there.
Other Thoughts: Overall, we all enjoyed our round very much even though everyone was getting pretty frustrated as the back 9 progressed.
This course in Highland, IL is well worth the drive for every skill level but I would deem the front 9 more beginner friendly with the back 9 more for the intermediate/advance players but everyone will enjoy their trek at Silver Lake DGC I am sure.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
On its way to being a good course
Pros: I felt like there was a good mix of tee shots (hyzer, anhyzer, straight). The park is also in excellent shape, on the front 9 there are a lot of large old trees that shape natural lines to the basket. Now that the leaves and bushes are filling in most of the front 9 is shaded, which will be nice in the summer heat. Course is setup as a figure 8 double loop, so holes 1 and 10 are next to eachother if you want to avoid another group.
Cons: Some of the walks between holes are a bit awkward (from 1's basket to 2's tee) and might cause some bottlenecking once more people play at the course. The tees are natural and lie in low areas, so this time of year some of the tees are soggy. The course could also use some garbage cans and benches. This isn't a problem yet, but could be once the word spreads about the course and it gets more traffic. The tee to hole 11 was moved recently...the hole was the second longest on the course and now a lot of distance is lost. The tee shot is basically a RHBH anhyzer layup shot to make it onto the fairway.
Other Thoughts: Overall I enjoy the course, it's a great beginner course with a variety of shots. Even though most of the holes are under 300 feet, some of the tee shots are pretty technical and you can get into trouble if you don't hit your line. Once the course gets concrete poured, and maybe a second set of tees and another set of basket placements it could be one of the better courses in the area. As it stands right now I like going out there and playing with just mids and putters to really focus on my short game.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 2 Not
Will be great after grooming
Pros: Beeeeeeeeeeeeeautiful park, bring your digicam along for sure (I played in the wintertime mind you, it can only get more picturesque when everything fills in/gets green). Views of the lake and a nice quiet setting make this course a pretty peaceful and serene round of golf. (Watch out for the ducks and their, erm, droppings, flying overhead though. Hitchcock would've been proud)
Variety is thoroughly covered here: long (17 and 11), short (2 and 5), hyzer (1,10), anhyzer (2,5,7,8,12), in woods (2,5,13,14), out of woods (1,10,17,18), fast pins (1,2,10,11,16), slow pins (3,12,15), water hazard (1,7,11,10), flick rollers (13,14); beating this course WILL require a complete arsenal, and a fairly large set of stones.
Hole 13 is a cool shot in its own right, but you've GOT to click on the media tab and check out 14. The narrowest, tightest, most frustrating tunnel shot i've ever played, but it's so cool, you HAVE to have fun on that hole.
Both 9's loop back to the pavilion by the parking lot, and parking puts you right on top of 1's tee.
Spankin' new beefy Gateway baskets.
Between the elevation changes, pin speed changes, woodiness changes, and open/tight variety, you won't get bored here. There are similar holes on the course, but they don't follow one another.
Cons: No navigation to get you from the park entrance to the "DG" parking lot.
1 and 10 are the exact same shot: downhill hyzers with water close to the pin. Having some repetitiveness on the course isn't inherently bad, if not inevitable given the terrain, but you tee off from damn near the exact same spot for both holes, the hazards are the same if you foul up, and you have to come back across both fairways to get to the respective next holes. NOT the best strategy anyway, but the first of such i've seen from Dave Mac, and am mildly disappointed. A redesign of these two holes alone will shave 15 minutes off of a round on a crowded day and alleviate a lot of frustration.
This course DESPERATELY needs concrete tees. There's not a flat patch of ground in the park anyway, but such rutted and uneven teepads do a lot to ruin the experience here. Hopefully (if the natural pads stay) the footing will get better in springtime/with a little grooming because it's pretty awful right now.
A close second priority to teepads is navigational aid. Getting from 11's pin to 12's pad specifically will leave many newcomers frustrated as there's nothing around to point you in the right direction. The 8-9, 16-17, and 17-18 transitions are likewise barely navigable if you don't have a guide. Having only hole numbers on the tee posts (no map/directional arrows/pars/yardage) only makes it worse.
No kiosk, no scorecards, sparse trashcans, even fewer benches, no water access, and minimal parking all serve to blemish the experience here. Bathrooms are available to the right of the hole 9-10 transition, but were closed, and no porta-john on site is just asking for people to leave steamy piles in the woods.
The course map provided in the links section is adequate enough to get you from tee to tee, but the 'routes' designated on there are just a step above useless. Showing holes 2 and 10 on there as straight shots is outright BS as you'll see if you play there. 5 and 8 as well are pretty far off of what the map shows you.
A fantastic design (save for 1 and 10) that covers all the variety of shots, has great risk/reward, awesome holes like 13 and 14, and enough fast pins near water to crank up the pucker factor. It's open enough for ams to have a good time and tough enough to challenge more advanced players as well.
The setting was very pretty in the wintertime and i bet it's gorgeous when everything is greener. Plenty of photo ops of holes near the lake and 14's shot for sure.
If you're coming from the west, the turn in to the park is mildly obstructed by the woodline to the left, so start slowing down as you approach the (water?) tower and the big microwave array. The left turn to get into the park is just west of that complex, so if you pass them, you've gone too far.
I never got around to the east side of that turn in, but from the west, there's no quickie-mart to stop at to use the john/pick up a snack, so stock up (or drop off :P ) while you're still in the vicinity of Highway 70. It's slim pickins all the way down 143.
Worth the drive (if you're coming from Woodland Park in Collinsville especially, as it's only ~15 miles away). Concrete tees and teesign info make it better (3.5), redesign of 1 and 10, amenities, and navigation aid makes it great (4.0).
For pics of our play, check out this photo album: http://www.flickr.com/photos/...625516217389/
8 of 10 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Nice new course
Pros: -Course is a nice city park style course that plays through mature oaks on the front 9 and opens up to a somewhat longer, more open back nine...very much like most of dave mac's designs.
-Nice use of available elevation a handful of holes are slight downhill shots (1,2,4,10,11,12), and a couple slightly uphill holes (3, 4)
-Decent variety of hole shapes: some l-->r (5,8,12), some r-->l(1,10), some tunnel shots (2,13,14), a bottle neck or two (16), several mostly open holes, and a couple holes where would would be in play on bad and or long shots (1, 7, 8, maybe 11)
-Some length variety: mostly less than 300' on the front, a couple over 400 on the back.
-Some nice thick rough that punishes inaccuracy.
-Fun little course that will challenge recreational players and most intermeiate players.
-Decent amount of OB.
Cons: -I'm not going to knock the course for being brand new, but cons nonetheless: natural tees, tees signs are just 4x4s with numbers on them, no trashcans etc.
-There will however be problems when the park is busy. The area that the front nine is in has lots of picnic areas, possibly fishermen by the ponds. The back nine might be dangerous as it plays through a series of walking paths, with lots of blind areas.
-The course is pretty short overall, a little lacking on the length variety in the front nine, as most holes are between 250' and 280'.
-If the course gets really busy, there are sure to be backups on some holes 1-2 because you walk back up 2s fairway to get to the teebox, 11 throws toward 18's tee on the first shot.
-A couple of tees were in low spots (15) or drainage ditches (17) and will probably need to be moved before concrete goes in.
Other Thoughts: Overall a very fun course, and beginner friendly, which is nice for the area. I'm excited to see the multiple pins and tees, it'd be nice to see some pins closer to water for tournaments and such, and some tees that draw the length out a bit more. I get out here about once a month, so I'll update the review appropriately.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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