10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Selah Ranch - Creekside has been on my bucket list for two years. It was the first course I played at the ranch of the two courses. My drive to the course had my heart pounding. I literally couldn't wait to get there. When I arrived at the course I was greeted by the ranch manager. The pro shop was pretty neat and I was pretty surprised to find I was the only one there. Regardless, he gave me everything I needed to know and sent me on my way. I had the entire course to myself. Literally not a soul in sight on one of the best courses in the world. Here are my pros.... DISCLAIMER: My review is written from my perspective from the long tees:
1) The finishing stretch of holes at Creekside is amongst the best finishing holes in all of disc golf, bar none. It is better than its counterpart Lakeside and and truly left me speechless. You wouldn't think hole 15, measuring in at 296 feet, would be that special but this hole was awesome. It was a true option hole and the tree in front of the teebox (you'll know the one I am talking about) is unforgettable. This is what an option hole should be....AND then you get to hole 16 and you find out what disc golf is all about. This is the hole that defines this course and at the end of the day its the only hole I came back to play twice...and then I played it a third time, as I was determined to make an eagle (I didn't...I put a disc in the water instead). This hole is one of the most glorious par 5's in disc golf and is probably the 4th best hole in all of disc golf, in my opinion. I would put it right up there with hole 7 at Lakeside. Hole 17 is a fun little shot over water that is screaming "come an get me" while 18 is one of the most daunting shots in all of disc golf. While some people may think hole 18 is gimmicky I think its insanely amazing. 318 feet to an island green? That's not gimmicky...its marvelous. Its what made the round so special. Its not a shot you want to throw over and over again, but it is a shot that defines the course. The finishing stretch on Creekside may be the best finishing stretch in all of disc golf. You don't need par 4's and par 5's to be great. They can be good, yes, but sometimes they fail (see below on that).
2) Water - Hopefully you aren't afraid of water, because you will get it out here. There is water everywhere and it comes into play on many shots. Pray for no wind! It adds a lot of value to the design and on a calm day really is peaceful.
3) Design - What stood out to me on this course is that the design, for the most part, was amazing (more on that below). There's not a lot of elevation here and the woods aren't particularly interesting in Texas, but in the end the design was very solid.
4) The greens fees were worth every dollar. I enjoy paying for disc golf when I know its going to a great cause. It is completely amazing to play disc golf with carts, especially on a massive course such as Creekside. Its so wonderful to just not have to worry about anything but throwing and throwing and throwing. Its just fun to drive golf carts!
5) Concrete tees and baskets were great. The baskets are newer because its a newer course and the tees allowed me the runup I needed to throw my shots. I remember having some extra space behind the tees as well in case I needed an extra runup.
6) I played the long tees and enjoyed every minute of it, but it is great that there is a nice set of red tees for different skill levels to enjoy. If I was in the scoring mood I could see myself playing the red tees. If I am in the beatdown mood, I'd just play the long tees!
7) This is nature at its best. While it sucked actually getting to this course, once you are there it feels like a different world. There's no interstate noise, no city noise...just nature. You are in nature and you are playing the best sport in the world. This course is so far out in the middle of nowhere that its almost like you are playing disc golf in the glorious Shire.
8) The variety is completely astounding here. I threw putter off of the tee on two holes and threw three drives on another hole just to get close to the basket (number 8). This course can be really long, like hole 10, but then the course can be really short (like holes 4 and 5 and 11). The course had a hole over 1000 feet and five holes under 300 feet. If that's not variety I don't know what is! I think it makes the longer holes even more special when they are not stacked one after one after one. Its nice to play a 930 foot par 5 (hole 10) and then play a short part 3. Likewise, after playing the beastly hole 16 you get a shorter par 3 measuring 279 feet (albeit with a water carry).
9) The Par 3's - I thought the par 3's at Creekside were better than the par 3's at Lakeside. I saw some complaints about holes 4 and 5 and how they were boring because they were just baskets by water.....but wow! That's the kind of hole that makes you think and brings out the best disc golfers. Go for it or not? Both of these holes, while very similar, are much more unique and better than 90% of the par 3's at your average city course. Both of these holes require a lot of guts to even come near the basket and if you don't come near the basket on your tee shot, are you going to have the guts to go for the putt? Now I did think 13 was a little redundant because it was a similar shot but I still like these kind of holes because it forces you to make decisions. Instead of just chucking it you really have to think about where to throw it. Also, hole 11, while fairly short, just felt more interesting to me than most, short par 3's. I loved how the basket was blind from the tee.
10) Other: Hole 12 may not stand out to some people but this one of my favorite par 4's on the course. It had some elevation and was really memorable because of the big hay bales. I really liked the second shot on this hole and thought the green was well thought out.
Cons: You can't really give a course a 4.5 and have a lot of cons but there were a few:
1) I personally LOVE long bomber courses so this type of course would usually be right up my alley, but I found myself a little bored by holes 7 through 10. Its not that they weren't good holes but to say they were great holes would not be accurate in my opinion. 7 was a little too wide open for me and hole 8 just felt long for the sake of long. As stated I do love long holes but after finishing hole 8 I just felt normal. It didn't feel like the hole would offer a big score separation because it didn't have a lot going on. Hole 9 was better but still a little too open for me. Just throw a big hyzer off of the tee and throw another hyzer to the basket. Hole 10....more on that below. As I said, these weren't bad holes but they weren't great holes.
2) I really wanted to like hole 10. On paper it looked like a signature hole. The green on this hole was phenomenal and the last 200 feet down the corridor really provided a neat window to the green. But its the first 730 feet I had a problem with. This hole was built as an option hole but I just couldn't really figure out the location of the fairway. The left route seemed too hard to hit and the right route looked too jumbled. I played this hole twice to try to get the feel and both times I was just confused as to where I was actually supposed to be throwing. I love option holes, but I truly believe that option holes are VERY hard to make work on par 4's and par 5's. I have talked to other designers about this and they tend to agree. I think the concept and idea behind this hole were great but it just didn't work for me.
NOTE: I was originally going to reduce the rating of this course to a 4.0 because of the length of the grass on some of the holes and the presence of a lot of downed limbs. The day I played Creekside it was in rough shape. I spoke to the ranch manager and he said the weather had been pretty bad. I decided not to penalize the course for this, but I wanted to point out the fact that the day I played the grass was very long in some areas (I lost a disc in the middle of the fairway on hole 7) and there were a lot of branches down on the course. Don't let the cons scare you. This course is worth every penny!
Other Thoughts: I thought long and hard about my rating for Creekside and tried not to compare it to Lakeside. But at the end of the day its impossible not to compare the two courses. While I do think Lakeside is a better course than Creekside, its not by much. Lakeside has more breathtaking holes but Lakeside has one too many "average" holes. Creekside only has a few "average" holes in my opinion, and so it wins in that regard. I would actually rate Creekside somewhere between a 4.25 and a 4.5 but I bumped it up to a 4.5 because the finishing stretch is amazing. As stated in my Lakeside review I would actually give Lakeside a rating closer to 4.75 but didn't quite think it qualified to be a 5. Two marvelous courses on one property made for a great day of disc golf!
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
My Favorite Selah Course
5 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Wonderful amenities on site including a small pro shop, showers and bathrooms at the start of the course etc.
Well designed within the land given, this course has a more natural feel that Lakeside. I'm not sure why I like it better, but I do.
While I don't like the carts overall they do reduce fatigue.
See the pros in the reviews below. Some o them describe this course far more eloquently than I can.
Cons: Price. $20 is reasonable for the courses, but the $40 fee for the carts is almost mandatory unless you're in tip top shape.
The carts: In addition to being costly they aren't doing anything good for the land on either course. Golf courses cut down on wear and tear by having cart paths. Disc golfers seem to drive the carts all over the place instead of staying well away from water, and the center of the fairway the way common sense would dictate. Please have some courtesy people.
Other than those two I really don't have much bad to say about Creekside. It is a little sterile like Lakeside, but not nearly as bad.
Other Thoughts: I know this goes against the grain, but I enjoyed Creekside more than Lakeside. I waited until I'd played both courses several times and from both sets of tees to write this thinking I'd change my mind, but at the end of the day I'd really like to be able to rate this course a 4.5 and Creekside a 4.75, but working within the system we have I want to rate both courses fairly, but show my preference for Creekside.
I travel all over the US for business, and don't review many courses unless I feel I have something to add. Unfortunately here I feel like I need to add a contrary opinion. These are marvelous courses, but they do have things that could be improved.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
A Great Compliment to Lakeside
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Selah Ranch courses are on some of the most beautiful property that I have seen for a disc golf course. Jack, the course manager, was very helpful in giving us insights about the courses and warning us about any holes where rough or high water was the worst. He said that the conditions of the course were the worst they have ever been, and the courses were still in pristine shape. Luckily, we caught the course just after he had mowed the fairways for some of the holes. Even off the fairway, the grass was not very high nor was the rough thick. We didn't have to search for our discs at all throughout our two rounds.
All of the amenities are the best of the best, with plenty of clean bathrooms and showers near the pro shop, elaborate course maps and tee signs at every tee, very big concrete tees, and DISCatcher baskets in great shape. The two tee positions do a great job of offering completely different looks and distances for almost every hole. The difference between the Blue and Red tees drastically changes the hole for 10-13, 15, and 16-18.
One of the biggest strengths about the course is the incredible distribution of variety that it offers. The course has moderately wooded long holes (1, 2, 9, 16), very tight holes (6, 10, 14), different kinds of water holes (3-5, 10, 13, 16-18), long holes that allow for some bombs (7, 8), and truly everything in between. Holes 3, 10, and 14 are the three highlight holes for me, and they have completely different feels to them. I could play holes 10 and 14 a completely different way the first 5 times I played them, which to me is a top quality. The tee and pin placement offers a great variety of risk/reward type holes too. The water holes definitely give the biggest risk factor, whether it's hitting the specific landing zones, hitting the tight windows, and avoiding tree kicks into the water on 3, trying to avoid hyzering out too much on birdie-runs 4 and 5, or throwing directly over the ponds on 13, 16-18.
The course does a great job of offering vastly different lengths (with holes ranging from 159-1,019 feet) and pars (with 7 par 4's and 3 par 5's). These are true pars, though achieving par or birdie is not out of the question for even a low-mid 800's level player like myself.
I was also impressed with how well-used the elevation was on the majority of the holes. While there are not any extreme elevation changes, I was pleasantly surprised to see excellent design incorporating the elevation on many holes. The constant downward sloping of 7 and 9 and upward slope on 12 makes otherwise straight-forward holes more interesting.
Cons: -Probably the biggest con for me, and in comparison with most other courses out there is a very small factor, is the amount of straight-forwardness on some of the holes here. This is one of the best designed courses I have ever played, no doubt. However, there are a fair bit of holes on here that don't live up to the rest of the course's standard. Holes like 2, 7, and 8 allow for a lot of room for error and don't give the player many options to be creative, while 13, 17-18 are simple water holes where you throw from one side of the pond to the other. Obviously, there is more risk and technique involved than that, but the water holes on Creekside are significantly less fun and dramatic than those on Lakeside, and feel repetitive by the end of the round. I also think that holes like 4-5, 7-8, and 17-18 feel the slightest bit bland because they are very similar holes that are played consecutively, which makes them stand out a little in a negative way to me. That is the biggest factor of the course that brings my rating to a 4.5. The course does have some of the best designed - and some of my favorite holes - that I have played. And, I can see why so many people have given this course a 5. However, these holes mentioned take away the "best of the best" factor for me.
Other Thoughts: I definitely recommend getting a cart, even though it costs $40. There is plenty of room in the back to hold bags, coolers, etc. Also, it is worth getting for being able to drive up to see the landing zones and pin positions on some of the very long holes. I also recommend buying a few of the $5 used discs, as they have a huge selection of discs that are in great condition.
Combining Creekside with the Lakeside course makes for truly one of, if not the best days of playing disc golf out there. The courses are only a few hundred yards away, but offer completely different feels from each other. The water and woods holes are vastly different between the two courses, giving unparalleled variety for an awesome day of disc golf.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Rolling Hills, Precarious Approaches, and Disc Golf Chess
11 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Selah Ranch's Creekside course sets the stage for the transcendent Lakeside by offering a wider range of shots than its complement. The signature complex par 4s and 5s are here in 3, 10, and 14, which demand precision placement, strong strategy, a respect for landing zones, and constant risk-versus-reward analysis, all propelled by a dizzying array of shots. There are plenty of opportunities to stretch your arm, such as in 2, 7, and 8, where you make your way toward the basket with broad lines around large, strategically-located trees. Water makes for some fearsome approaches (4 and 5) or serves as a more direct hazard (17 and 18), while elsewhere shaping fairways and complicating the puzzle (3, 10, and 16). The remaining holes each have their own unique character, be it 6's tunnel shot over rolling hills, 9's downhill hyzer ending with a guarded basket, or 12's hay bale guarded uphill shot.
This diversity is for the most part masterfully orchestrated; any minor quibbles mentioned below fade behind the overall sense of considerate variation. Creekside often switches gears effectively, following up, say, the par 4 challenge of hole 14 with a more straight ahead birdie run/easy 3 on hole 15. This attention to pacing isn't always perfect, but it's darn close, and certainly better than most courses I've played. The terrain is masterfully manipulated to create an immensely satisfying hole progression.
Both Selah courses are elevated by their attention to detail and their emphasis on the mental game. Tees, pins, and obstacles are all delicately positioned to make a potentially standard shot fresh and new. While longer holes are common, these stress placement much more than raw distance; knowing where to land to set up the next shot is crucial. At the same time, Creekside has a welcome share of light-hearted moments that allow you to kick back and let your hair down, whether it's making an ace run on 4 with a disc you don't mind getting wet or the almost gluttonously open spaces of hole 8. It all combines to make for an unforgettable round.
Everything beyond the golf itself is also spectacular: concrete tees are fantastic, bathrooms are clean and accessible, the pro shop with affordable used discs is very welcome with all the water, and the cart makes for a fun experience. The setting is beyond gorgeous, and even on what we were told was a down day, the grounds were impeccably tended. Go to Selah.
Cons: The following nit-picks keep Creekside from obtaining perfect 5.0 status for me.
Despite the largely great flow and variation of the course, it's not flawless. Holes 4 and 5 around the lake rely on water's edge pin placements to spice up otherwise straightforward holes, and when played back to back the device seems a little transparent. This sense is reinforced on the closing two holes, which reprise the pins-against-the-water once again back to back. Each hole presents its own variation on this theme, but four such holes in two pairs on the same course becomes a bit tired. This sense was amplified for me because of how much more one-dimensional the use of water is on these holes compared to elsewhere: it factors in for sheer terror factor much more than strategic complication, which is a step down from the other times it makes an appearance.
There are other spots on the course where repetition comes into play in at least a minor fashion. In addition to these two pairs of water holes, holes 7 and 8 both allow you to more or less grip it and rip it with impunity (a bit less so when playing 8 from the long tee). Back to back, they feel somewhat self-similar. Between this pair and the comparable 4 and 5, I felt that Creekside's front 9 was the least interesting 9 on site. Of course, this is very relative to the context, as they remain world class.
The cart is really necessary. The course is exceedingly spread out, and would wipe you out if you walked it. I can't imagine playing Selah on foot in July. And while I think $20 per person for a day of unlimited play is a more than fair price given the courses and the grooming, $40 for the cart seems a bit steep. But again, that's a relatively small complaint.
Other Thoughts: What amazed me most about my visit to Selah is that it exceeded my improbably high expectations. This really is as good as it gets.
I'll reiterate that the cart is a necessity, especially if you want to maximize your visit. We managed to play both courses completely through and hit much of them a second time in around 7 or 8 hours, while really taking our time to savor it all. We started with Creekside, which I'd recommend, since the quality slowly builds until culminating effectively at Lakeside.
The Super 8 Motel in Mount Vernon makes for a convenient and cheap place to stay on your visit if you're not ponying up to lodge on site.
11 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Another World Class Course
2 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: This course is amazing. It is 2nd in actual hole design only to its better brother Lakeside. The course is much tougher than at first glance. I would say the cart is much more valuable here than on Lakeside. This course plays to the strength of the players with big arms, but to really take some strokes off the game with a distance drive you need to throw with some degree of accuracy about 475' or more without a problem.
I think the only reason this course didn't get a 5 rating from me was the somewhat repetitive over the little pond throws. I don't remember how many there are, but they are similar enough I feel that a couple different shots could be used here.
#10 - This hole is amazing. From the red tee it really challenges, but the blue tee is a little more forgiving. I would put this in my top 5 holes anywhere possibly top 3.
Cons: Some repetitive shots keep this from a 5 for me. I almost aced 18 with 25 mph winds, but that is a heartwrenching shot.
Other Thoughts: You must come here this course is amazing. Play both, but either course will keep you looking for the best in disc golf anywhere else around.
2 of 10 people found this review helpful.
A lot of fun
6 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: It's a bit less technical than Lakesides course, but it still has quite a bit of technicality. Lot's of tricky greens around water. Great use of the water and landscape for 16,17,18 area. Some more shorter technical holes using water all around the course make for a fun and challenging round. A lot of longer more open holes than Lakeside, all of which are birdie-able but still require a good amount of skill to do it. Great mix of hole length throughout the course, anywhere from 1000'+ to 200'. I preferred this course to Lakeside even though I was more worn out playing it than the other.
I think 16 and 18 are my favorite holes on this course, but I like most of them a lot.
Cons: Hole 3 I wasnt into. I think its poorly designed. But just like on Lakeside 14, just because I dont like it, doesnt mean you wont, and it doesnt make it not a ridiculously great course.
Other Thoughts: This course would be worth the 7 hour drive for me, having it on the same property as Lakeside is a huuuge bonus. Bring your retriever and some extras you dont mind losing, there is a really high chance you will have one in the water before the day is done. Same thoughts as my Lakeside review, bring hydration and snacks. Enjoy the amenities that Selah has to offer, and dont miss out on a chance to play either of those courses.
6 of 10 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Creekside is an interesting collection of fairway designs. All 36 Selah holes considered, I would say Creekside has both the most difficult hole (#3) and the very best individual hole (#10) on the ranch. #3 is an awesome, menacing challenge and I would rate it as the most difficult at Selah. I would love to see some long term player statistics to see how it stacks up on a difficulty scale. The way it's designed, you have to bomb a drive and place it in a very small area of fairway. Too far right and you have no look and no shot toward the basket with your only option being a layup shot toward the water. Too far left and you are taking off your pants for a snake swim or you are headed to the proshop to buy a new disc. On top of this, the landing area is cut in half by a line of sentinel trees with fairly small gaps so you need a little luck even when you land on the sweet spot. Past this, the forest crowds toward the water leaving a 200' long sliver of dry land against the water. Additionally, the green is heavily guarded so even after a perfect drive, you are left with a precision upshot for any chance at birdie. Oh, and if you drift a little right on your approach to the basket, you risk a 'tree-hyzer' straight into the pond. What a killer awesome hole design that ate my lunch and discs both times I played it.
#10 is the very best overall design at the ranch. A shady wooded fairway leads to a landing area followed by a technical R->L turning shot out to the end of a peninsula surrounded on three sides by an OB creek. Not overly difficult for a par 5 but a canopy-enclosed, enchanting, challenging fairway design that holds your interest over and over.
One other hole worth mentioning was #15. Very nice placement of tee and basket which gives the thrower the option of going right or left. A low ceiling adds difficulty. Overall a great place to shape a shot with a high-glide midrange or a light weight fairway driver.
Cons: The rating drop-down box pairs each number rating with adjective clause. 5 says best of the best. 4.5 says phenomenal which I believe describes the overall experience on Creekside. The cons are that many of the holes can get repetitive. For example, 4,5,and 13 are all slight variations of the same short, open water hole. Also, 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, and 12 are pretty open similar holes that invite the thrower to blow an 'o' ring off the tee, maybe miss an obvious obstacle, and then an easy open upshot (or two). Not bad designs, just average and forgettable. 12 was a strange design for me. A longer uphill blind shot over large round hay bales. I didnt look forward to this hole because I couldn't see the basket or where to land my plastic for a decent second shot. Maybe staff could clear a path through the bales, or put a tall extension flag on the basket that is visible from the tees. This could be a better hole and probably will be in the future. Remember, 4.5 is still phenomenal, but this course should probably take a back seat to Lakeside.
Other Thoughts: Selah should be your next DG road trip destination. You will enjoy exceptional accommodations, you will play world class disc golf, and you will be supporting some of the nicest people in Texas. Plus I got a slightly used Star Starfire and a Sirius Orion for $5ea in the proshop. Nothin' says phenomenal like 70% off on some killer plastic.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
30 Helpful / 1 Not
A great course at a great venue
Pros: Creekside is one of two courses at an amazing disc golf destination. The amenities are unparalleled. The pro-shop, clubhouse, and inn are terrific. The course looks and feels very much like a golf course and the Wow factor is off the hook. (The course is much prettier than the pictures show.) Discs are very easy to find and there's very little schule to get into.
The cement tees are huge. The tee signs are top notch. The blue and red tees are spot-on appropriate with their distances for the intended skill levels.
The ponds are picturesque and well-used to provide some pucker factor on those holes.
Most of the preferred landing areas on the par 4's and 5's can be clearly seen from the tee by the shorter mowed fairway grass.
Some of the highlights:
Hole 3 is a very nice short/medium par 4 at just over 600 ft. The drive has water all the way down the left side and must be accurately placed to take advantage of one of the two distinct clear routes into the basket area that is into the woods.
Hole 5 is a short, "should-get" par 3 that can really get into your head, particularly if it's windy. The water is taunting and there's a choice to come in over the water or throw a delicate hyzer shot around the guardian trees.
Hole 10 is a wonderfully conceived par 5 with two distinct options. One option creates the opportunity to reach the basket area with two great shots for an eagle opportunity, but involves a tighter, riskier tee shot. The other, three shot option has an easier tee shot, but getting a birdie still requires three well-thrown, technical shots. (This hole could benefit from having a few more trees removed and some additional trimming, possibly coupled with a couple navigation landmarks.)
Hole 16 is a classic, short par 5 with trees and water and a challenging basket location close to the water. Players have the opportunity to take some chances and eagle is possible.
Cons: This course is terrific and among my favorites, but isn't quite a 5.0.
The huge walks that are required in between holes diminish the experience. It is a very nice amenity to offer golf cart rentals, but I don't like the idea that taking a cart is almost required to enjoy playing a course.
While there are some "next tee" navigation signs, there could be more as the routing isn't always apparent.
For me to rate a course a 5.0 it will need to be a complete challenge. Creekside has lots going for it and comes close, but there several attributes that aren't found. With the exception of a handful of baskets that are near water, there is no trouble around the baskets. There are no uphill, downhill, sidehill putts and no drop-off's behind the baskets. Overall the terrain offers only slight elevation changes.
With the exception of holes 10-11, the course is very open. There are trees and shots do need to be shaped to some extent, but the gaps are very wide. The handful of water shots are the only real pucker factor on the course.
Hole 18 affords no bailout option. Particularly for the red tee, forcing all players to carry 180 ft. of water without a bailout option is pretty harsh.
Other Thoughts: Selah Ranch is highly recommended. If you visit, plan to have at least a day and a half of playing time, because you'll definitely want to play these courses more than once.
Don't be a dirty discer; leave the course cleaner than the way you found it.
30 of 31 people found this review helpful.
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