A Gift from Nature and it's Curator
16 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The pros of this course are almost too many to list, but I'll do my best not to miss any.
Flip City is off of a dirt road in Shelby, MI, not near anything much that I could decifer.
You pull up, and there is a small house and a barn and a boat... Yes a boat, the USS Flip City(a small sailboat) that is up on stilts and used as a flagpole.
I'm immediately I'm immediately intrigued; first class disc golf and eccentricities? I'm all in.
There is a small parking lot and you walk over to the pay slot( an upturned mailbox with a slit cut in and put in your $1(seriously, just one dollar) and grab a scorecard and map from another mailbox just beside it.
Numbers one and two are good warmups over well manicured land(Bill was cutting the grass as I played there, but luckily stopped briefly so that I could say hello).
It quickly escalated into a more technical course that can bring great reward or great frustration depending on how your bad hops or lucky bounces go.
It's heavily wooded throughout and has a ton of these little rock sculptures throughout. Some are huge in moveable cairns that are intentionally placed, others are small and built by players.
Of the latter, of you knock one over you must repair it and build one of your own.
I didn't knock any down but built a few more, becuase it's fun and what better thing could you do while waiting for someone to throw?
The course is widely varied between short technical holes like #3 or #17 and some big open bombs like #2A which was among my favorites.
There is a great amount of thought behind every hole, and great long teepads. With a runoff area at the end so that you never step in those pesky end of pad puddles.
I love the trees; the course is flush with great old growth hardwoods, manicured pines and all manner of amazing foliage.
It's also a big enough course that even though I wasn't alone out there it felt like it at times, and you could really connect with the course and your game. It's actually not massive at about 35 acres but you feel miles away from the nearest player even of they are 100 ft away.
The fairways are mostly very gaurded and give very little runoff from errant throws on neighboring holes.
There are plenty of port o johns and shelters and at least one sitting area by every hole.
It's truely a pleasure and one of the jewels of the sport.
Cons: Threre are very few, I feel bad about putting anything here.
If they are out of maps(like they were when I played) it's hard to navigate some holes, hole layouts by the tee would be cool to have.
There is only one layout per hole...again on an epic 24 hole course this is nitpicking, but I'd love to see what Bill could come up with.
Other Thoughts: Bill said some people have been after him to add some water holes, I disagree, one; why mess with an amazing legendary course? Two; mosquitoes you guys. There were very few when I played, unlike every other MI course this summer.(they all had water)
This is a must play that I get to check off my wishlist, it was as good as advertised and I understand all the love it has been given now.
I can only give it a 4.5 becuase you can't do a 4.75 on here and I think that comparied to the gold standard in my book(Rollin Ridge) there are fewer amenities and modern touches. Not that that is a bad thing really, the rustic nature of the property is quite charming.
Play this course, if your a local treat it well.
And put more than $1 in the mailbox.
16 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Oh, the serenity...
25 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Wonderful 24 hole course, out in the middle of nowhere, set on some of the best land you could imagine for discing. Truly pristine.
2 tee areas on each hole. Longs are nice, grippy concrete, with a foul line and runover area. Really nice, and plenty long/wide enough. The shorts are natural and signified by two rocks. We didn't see anybody playing the shorts the entire weekend.
Good baskets, all in good repair, and very level. They all caught well. No issues here. One pin position for each hole.
Elevation EVERYWHERE. Outside of a few holes, elevation played a big part in nearly every shot, and in a good way. Well thought out and never seemed to be gimmicky. The terrain also seemed to block out a lot of wind, which to me, is a huge positive.
Great use of the obstacles here. Trees forced certain lines or served as pin guardians. Well designed in every way. The risk/reward on many holes is fantastic. There were a few lines I hit that I felt as if I'd just won the Super Bowl.
Superb mix of distances. Several holes under 200', but even those were tricky, technical shots that required great touch and sometimes, a bit of luck. Bombers in the 400's, a 650' hole 2 that goes from clearing to trees...really all you could hope for in one course. There really isn't a throwaway hole on the entire course....which is quite a feat over 24 holes.
The manicuring here is beyond awesome. Fairways are perfectly framed (and perfectly generous) and lines are mowed into the taller prairie grass, which makes finding discs much easier. Flip City is scenic as you could want.
Navigation was a breeze, with many next tee signs helping the cause, and a very intuitive layout.
Cons: Not much to list here.
Some of the rough is ROUGH. If you're off the fairway in the wrong spots, you'll come out worse for the wear, to be sure.
No water. No biggie, but worth mentioning.
Only one set of real tee pads, and one pin position. While the golf is phenomenal, it would definitely be cool to see multiple pin positions.
No tee signs to speak of. Just a post in the ground with the hole number. If you don't grab the scorecard at the beginning, you won't know distances, outside of eyeballing. It kind of boggled my mind that there weren't great signs here, especially with all the other hole to hole amenities (benches/shelters/etc).
Other Thoughts: Flip City is truly a destination. You can camp onsite ($10 night/person), and only $1 a round, which is dirt cheap. The camping is rough (no showers or other amenities), and you'll want to be fully stocked on supplies, unless you want to drive 15 mins to restock.
From scenery, to serenity, Flip City is all you can imagine. I had an absolute blast playing here. Group rounds are fun as hell, and the solo round I snuck in was equally rewarding. Make sure to thank Bill for all his work...this place is certainly a labor of love. From the rock sculptures to the rolling hills to the golf club feel of the fairways, he has truly built something great.
I know I'm going to get many thumbs down for rating Flip City a 4.5, but it's less of an indictment of what Flip is than of what other courses are, as it relates to the current run of new courses and their amenities (Rollin' Ridge sticks out as the gold standard for me). The golf is as good as anywhere I've been. It just lacks the amenities of some other modern courses.
With that said, this is definitely a destination, especially with Beauty/Beast/Goliath/Leviathan (among others) in the immediate area. I actually thought I'd be let down coming here, but it was quite the opposite. I now "get it" when it comes to Flip City...now get there so you too, can "get it"!!!
25 of 26 people found this review helpful.
A "must play"
9 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Lots of picturesque holes for your camera.
Lots of length.
Scenery. Lots to sit and look at.
24 holes that are nicely "linked" together!
Good people to run into all over this course.
Not too busy.
Great elevation changes.
Easy to navigate.
Lots of places to sit and take a break.
Cons: This course is remote. Western MI is a beautiful place to roam around in, and this course takes full advantage of the area. Some folks like water hazzards. This course doesn't appear to have any, but for me personally, I don't consider that a "con".
Other Thoughts: What all the others have said. My GPS led me directly to this place as one small dirt road led to an even smaller dirt road. A "mixed" sense of isolation and comfortable security filled me when I drove up to the property and saw the sign for "FLIP CITY". It's hard to describe, but there seems to be a lot of poverty in this part of the country. The dirt roads and dilapitated houses you pass on your way to this little gem contribute to the feeling of uneasiness one might have when one is far from one's hometown. When you reach Flip City however, the sprawling acres will make you feel at home again. Everywhere you look on this course, you will find dedication and attention to the detail of a disc golf course.
$1 to play per round is a steel. I placed a buck in the can and shot the 24 holes by myself at a liesurely pace. It probably took me a bit over 2 hours. I loved every minute of it, and I cannot wait for the chance to return. Bugs were not too bad, but I had spray. Lots of garbage cans, but I would encourage you to carry-in, carry-out. It's not that hard to do.
Once you finish hole 11, I encourage you to go to the top and follow to the right for holes 1A-6A. When done with 6A, you are right where you left off for hole 12. As mentioned, these holes are "linked" well.
9 of 14 people found this review helpful.
29 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Flip City is the Babe Ruth of disc golf. It has been a legend for longer than anyone can remember, it used to be #1, it got passed by a few others, but it's still beloved more than any other.
And for good reason. Playing here was a thoroughly enjoyable experience. The first several holes won't necessarily wow you, but after hole 4 it's all fun. Hole 5 is a steep uphill shot with the basket perched on a thin area with danger behind. Hole 6 gives a preview of the rest of the course: a downhill drive on a generous fairway.
After this many of the holes play up, down, over, and through the valleys that make up this guy's back yard (seriously, who gets to have a back yard like this?). These shots reminded me of a lot of the shots at Waterworks and Swope in Kansas City. Many of the baskets are on the hillside, which is always a plus for me. Get too aggressive and you'll be taking some bogeys or worse.
My favorite holes are 7, 10, and 11. Hole 7 is a gentle downhill drive that needs to get past some trees before a climb back up to a basket on top. Hole 10 is a steep uphill shot over a hump where your drive needs to land close or you have a very danger putt toward a cliff behind. Hole 11 shoots down that valley with the massive rock cairns in the midst of the fairway.
The care given to the fairways is exceptional. The fairways are perfectly mowed. The rough has paths cut out to help you look for your disc. At one point "FLIP CITY" is carved into the ground, in another point there is a giant basket mowed with dirt and grass. Ambitious and creative.
All of the holes are listed as par 3s on the scorecard, but a couple are really par 4s. Hole 2a (there are six holes between holes 11 and 12, and I'm guessing he didn't want to renumber the original ones when he put in these new ones) is 670 feet long through some undulating, lightly wooded terrain. Hole 3a is only 306 feet, but there is obvious path through the thick trees, and I think getting a 3 is more the result of luck than anything.
One of the best parts of the course for some reason is the mysterious rock cairns dotting some of the fairways and greens.
Apparently they were built by disc golfers and slowly built up. I like a course with a feature I haven't seen before, and it gives you a sense of the people who were here before you who love the course.
Navigation is pretty easy. The main tees are all concrete: old but adequate.
Cons: There are really very few technical holes. Hole 3a is the only truly technical hole, and it's not a great design (you really need to remove a tree or two). Generally the fairways leave a lot of room for error.
This is not an easy course, but I wouldn't say it was particularly challenging either. I don't mind having a configuration like this, but ideally you would like to have longer tee pads with more challenge. There is only one set of concrete tees, and the alternate tees are even shorter and are just rocks in the grass.
Other Thoughts: This was one of the tougher reviews to come up with a score for. In terms of fun, this is a 5.0 for sure. I can't say this was the best course I've played, but it was one of the most fun.
It is tough to deny that a few better players have come along since Babe Ruth. But when you want to read legendary tales of a larger-than-life figure, coming out of nowhere to change the game forever, you're not picking up books on those other guys. And when you want to show your friends a legendary course in the middle of nowhere, this will always be the sentimental favorite.
29 of 30 people found this review helpful.
Sets the bar high
5 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: This is some fantastic Michigan disc golf. From the secluded feel to the challenging holes, Flip City brings it. All the fairways had unique rock formations (mostly man made), that added to the aura that is Flip City. The fairways were well defined and the rough wasn't too punishing. It was cut in such as way that you were able to find your disc if your shot strayed. The flow and layout was great. I did not play 1A-6A due to time. I'm regretting it already. The holes here are challenging and diverse. They punish you if you lack accuracy and length. I did not fine them overly difficult from a technical standpoint.
Cons: There were markers for the holes but really no signs stating the footage and layout. You had to look at the score card (which was fine but an added step of going into your bag to look). The Am tees were marked with only rocks. These rocks were not clearly marked for every hole. My wife wanted to play from the Ams. It shouldn't be posted on the score card if you don't have it clearly marked in each fairway. This was my one real complaint.
Other Thoughts: Bring mosquio spray, plenty of water, a lunch, and your 'A' game. Sadly, I didn't get to play Flip City more.
This is in my top three courses I've played. We went on a weekday morning/afternoon and saw only a few other groups on the course (many of those were also from out of town). IT IS WORTH KICKIN' IN THE DOLLAR FOR ONE HECK OF A ROUND OF DISC GOLF.
5 of 12 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: It was a very fun course to play. The thing that stuck out the most to me was the upkeep, especially the rough. I really appreciated how the rough cut into sections instead of one long stretch of rough. Normally I hate tall grass with a passion because of the time it takes to search for a disc, but by cutting the rough in sections I was able to find my disc much faster because I knew where to look.
-All through the course the rocks were stacked to give a cool affect.
-The layout was easy to follow.
-A good variety of holes including open, wooded, left, right, uphill, downhill, long, and short.
-Nice big concrete tee pads.
-Disc golf only property.
Cons: -Signage could be better on holes. There was just the hole number. I prefer maps for each hole, even if its a simple picture. I also would really like to see distance posted.
-Not clear where the shorter tee pads are. It is grass with maybe rocks stacked to mark where to start?
Other Thoughts: Of the 10 courses I played in Michigan, this was by far my favorite. Of the 125+ courses I played this is in my top 5. You get a different feel playing this course compared to other courses I have played. It is very secluded and peaceful. I gave it extra credit points on my rating based on the atmosphere. We went on a weekday afternoon and saw maybe 2 other groups on the course in the distance, but I can see how this place could be very busy on weekends. Normally I'm against paying to play disc golf, but I didn't mind throwing in a dollar for this one.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 13 Not
Best course I've played...
Pros: This course is great. Very diverse hole layouts. From clear open tees that you can really drive from, to blind tees that need a little finesse.
The owner has been working on this course the entire time I've been alive and it shows. I only wish it was a little closer to home.
Cons: It's very hilly so be prepared to hike. Also, the tall grass is really thick and would be easy to lose discs in. Bring a friend to spot for you.
2 of 15 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 3 Not
Flip Trip 2013
Pros: An amazing park located on what could possibly be the best land a course could be built on. Lots of elevation which puts this course on a whole different level than any other. Favors both right and left handed shots about equally. Also has a good mix of distances ranging from 500'+ hole all the way to 187'. Nice long concrete tee pads to throw from to top off this great course. Newer baskets and properly mowed and manicured fairways is the ice cream to this masterpiece. Has a few benches and picnic tables around the course which is much needed for the adventure you will have and the rest that will be needed after walking on what could be the motherland of disc golf. Camping at the course is a total bonus and makes it perfect for out of towners wanting to come and play this beauty over the weekend and not have to drive all over. The owner Bill is a really cool, laid back guy willing to play a round with you or just sit by the fire and chat for hours. Has port-o-potties on site that are always cleaned and stocked. An all around amazing course and in my top 3 and def a top 10 course in the world.
Cons: Very few cons but with small improvements could send this course to the #1 spot. Some of the tees pads are showing their age and the sand has not been nice to them. They have started to grind holes and divots right where your feet spin and you power up and release your disc. Could be fixed easily with some mortar mix. Not all the holes have a bench to sit on. And with a course that is long and elevated you really start to feel that round when you've been standing all day. Mosquitos can be a pain here, so I highly recommend bringing lots of spray.
7 of 10 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: Exit 140 draws you out of the groove in the pine and hardwood forest that is highway 31 north of Muskegon, Michigan. You look out onto a terrain shaped by the last ice age and a few determined farmers. Untouched by the grower's machines, Flip City adds a few pads and baskets to the trees and plants that occupy this gift from a receding glacier. People who play here offer compensation for their grinding feet by erecting awkward columns from the rock-till exposed by recent rains or gathered by some past thrower who knew nothing of champion or esp plastic. Play at Flip City is both challenging as a sport and in harmony with the land. (Note: First in the order of competitive sports that disturb nature the least is Stone/Pond Skipping. Last? Pro-football)
Cons: People like me who started in the city/metro parks decades ago sometimes miss the beer and food stores down the block. Bring your cooler/supplies if you want to make a day out of it.
Other Thoughts: "Green Fees" are modest. Double pay; or triple pay for a whole day.
7 of 14 people found this review helpful.
22 Helpful / 1 Not
Got to play it!
Pros: There are plenty of reviews stating the amenities and the good parts of the course. So there isn't much to add so I will list some of the things that stood out.
Of course, Bill has put a tremendous amount of time into the course and it shows. The fairways are clean and clear - the rough is pretty easy to navigate too.
Some of the 'touches' I liked were:
- the directional teepads. They narrow at the front - and give a good indication of where the basket is located.
- The holes, while many of them are short, are usually protected by trees, rocks.
- The transition from 11->1A and back from 6A->12 is very well thought out. The course flows well overall. The only issue I had that I had to refer to the map too is 13->14. Right next to 13 is the tee for 10 and if you aren't paying attention, you'll probably head the wrong direction since pretty much all the other baskets and tee pads are right next to each other.
- The course is very clean - there were _no_ cigarette butts that I could see.
Loved seeing all the signatures on all the sheds that have been erected.
Cons: Not the course itself and the course info does mention it, but the deer flies are killer. Mosquitoes do not bother me, but I was eaten alive by the deer flies - DEET didn't scare them away either.
Mentioned this as a Pro, but looking at the hole lengths this is important to note. Many of the holes are short, but even the short ones have plenty of trees guarding the baskets. Without the trees most of these would be quick 2s.
I played minutes after it rained and it would have been nice to have bag hooks available. There are some concrete 'blocks' around many of the holes to set a bag down on and there are some benches around on other holes though.
Other Thoughts: They don't affect the game, unless you are hitting them - but I love all the rock cairn's around the place. They are all over, in many sizes.
This isn't really a pro or a con, but the layout is really setup for 18-24 holes. There are no front and back 9. There is a trail off of 6 tee pad to bring you to 15 if you just want to play 9 holes though. But once you pass that, you are playing 18 or 24 unless you want to go safari. Because of this layout, there isn't a quick stop at the car after 9 - once you are out, you are committed - bring drinks and maybe a snack.
Both a pro and a con - while there are pro/am/jr tees - the am/jr are just marked with rocks. I appreciate the additional shorter tees, but the rocks aren't as nice as the concrete tees.
I listed the cleanliness as a pro - there were plenty of bottle caps. I think I picked up 30-40 and tossed them. He has a no glass containers sign posted, but that seemed to have been largely ignored. The trash bins are full of beer bottles, so at least they are making their way into the bins and not into the woods.
The family brought me out for a Father's day present - much better than a tie. Drove 3 hours to get here and it was worth it.
Flip is really close to some other great courses in the area too.
22 of 23 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.