Worth the Pilgrimage
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Fun and exciting golf for all skill levels
- Fantastic use of elevation throughout at both fairways and greens
- Good variety of holes that both require different shots, and allow for different routes
- Excellent atmosphere unlike any other disc golf course
- Baskets catch well, benches by tee pads, and a couple shelters spaced throughout
- Camping available on site
Cons: - Concrete tee pads are on the small side, and some have minor to moderate spalls, with others frequently covered in sand
- No real tee signs with distance or other descriptive information
- No water hazards, though I never miss this fact during a round
- Only one set of pads/pins
Other Thoughts: After my third pilgrimage to Flip City, and having played many more courses in more states than my first visit 3 years ago, I decided to finally add my review of this amazing course. While my course totals and nation wide coverage are not up to the impressive levels many users of this site can claim, I feel like I have played enough courses throughout this country (including many currently top rated courses) to say that Flip City has an atmosphere and energy unlike any other disc golf course.
My level of excitement while driving down the gravel roads through rural Michigan to this destination course has increased with every trip. Once you park and drop your paltry $3 into the box by hole 1, Flip starts you off relatively easily, but by the time you reach holes 4 and 5, things have really started to ramp up and your adventure up and down the secluded hills of Flip City begins in earnest.
I really don't think there is a bad hole on the course, and the majority of holes could be the signature hole on a lot of courses. A good balance is struck between allowing you to play your, while still requiring sot shaping and variety. The course does play a bit more open, and favors a RHBH approach off the pad more often than not.
The hills and elevation change really are the stars of the show at Flip. Throwing up, down, and across hills, and towards baskets placed in various degrees of precariousness is incredibly fun and encourages thoughtful risk/reward play. I never missed the lack of water hazards during a round at Flip, but it is a design feature not available here.
The level of challenge at Flip is such that even beginner players can enjoy a round without feeling punished by the course, but more advanced players can hunt for the many birdie opportunities and not be bored. Multiple tee and pin positions would be a welcome feature that is becoming increasingly common at new courses, but the quality of golf from the existing layout is strong enough that this lack isn't much of a problem. I have played with people covering a large
The Mach V's are in good repair and catch well, and the benches, shelters, and port-a-potties are all welcome amenities throughout the course. Descriptive tee signs for each hole would be nice, especially since this is a destination course with many people traveling significant distances to play. While the "foul line" at the end of the tee pads are nice, in my opinion the pads are too short for it to be practical. At just over 6' my X-step approach was using the entire concrete pad. Several of the pads also had areas of spalled concrete and/or a significant amount of sandy dirt on them. I slipped 2 or 3 times during my last trip, and while I think I remember seeing brooms to clear off pads on previous visits, I didn't this time.
Every round I've played at Flip City has been immensely fun, there really aren't enough superlatives to describe the experience, you just need to do it for yourself. Even the brand new, played-5-times-before-now player in my group this past weekend appreciated what a great place Flip is, and had a great time. The course isn't without its flaws, but they are so minor compared to the overall quality of the course. Flip City really is among the "Best of the Best", so do yourself a favor and get out there if you can. Make a weekend of it and play some of the other fantastic courses in the area as well.
For those traveling, I have camped at both Flip City and the Mason County Campground near Ludington. Nothing beats being able to get up with the sun, roll out of your tent and play a morning round at Flip City, but for those who want a few more creature comforts, Mason County Campground has real bathrooms, showers, and places to plug in your electronics, as well as being 2 minutes from Beauty, Beast, and Goliath.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Amazing is an understatement!!!!!!
11 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: - Great Elevation
- Great mixture of open and wooded holes
- Very clean, well maintained
- Lots of sitting areas (and areas to break for lunch)
- Excellent high risk / high reward opportunities
- Quiet and great scenery
Cons: None that i can think of. Some may say it is too far away from nearest town where you can get food, gas, etc. but i think that adds to the charm of this place. There is something to be said about being out in the middle of nowhere where you dont hear any car traffic and the only noise you hear is the beautiful sound of chains and cheers.
Other Thoughts: Stepping onto this course for the first time I was very excited and was worried that I had set my expectations too high. Boy was i wrong!!! This course surpassed my expectations which were already very high. The scenery is breathtaking and just kept getting better and better as we walked through the course.
11 of 13 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 21 Not
Pros: This course as well as beautiful is very challenging. It has every shot choice imaginable barring water hazards. I would recommend this course to anyone.
Cons: The only con I can think of it is remote and food amenities are somewhat far away. However, knowing that, I would gladly pack a lunch getting the opportunity to play here.
5 of 26 people found this review helpful.
FLIP! The Living Legend
29 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Flip City Disc Golf Park is a living legend, and it cements its elite status with hole after hole of fun and rewarding golf. The design intelligently incorporates elevation change throughout the 24-hole layout, forcing the player to carefully consider disc selection and shot placement from tee to basket. As a slightly less skilled player, I appreciate that even if your mark isn't hit exactly, there are ample opportunities for creative recovery. The holes are designed in such a way as to give two players of similar skill levels radically different upshots to the basket, but give both players excellent opportunity for birdie or par. Hole 12 comes to mind especially with it's leftward curving, deep pitch fairway. Land far right and enjoy a level, if dangerous, birdie putt. Land in the center and just hope your approach sticks close enough for a par save.
The other hallmarks of Flip design are the fast, rollaway greens. I find it much more frustrating to watch a putt or approach roll for an additional 50 feet than to disappear over a sheer ledge. These greens are one of the biggest risk/reward factors on the course, and a big part of score separation in a round.
You'll find a great variety of lengths here as well. Just when you think you've thrown two similar distance holes in a row, the third one comes along to mix it up.
Flip's natural beauty is something to behold, especially in autumn when I played. Vibrant colors, stunning vistas, and the omnipresent rock cairns are, if you'll excuse the pun, par for the course. There's always something to look at, and often many things. A trip around Bill's property would be an excellent nature walk, disc golf notwithstanding.
If you like your courses chock-full of amenities, you won't be disappointed here. Three covered areas (including the one before Hole 1) on the course mean there's a chance to stop and rest and get out of any kind of weather. Benches and other seating areas can be found on nearly every hole. Two port-a-potties sit at the end of the course and the middle of the A holes.
Concrete tees have been provided, and feature a curved semicircle runoff area at the end to keep feet dry.
The course is squeaky clean, and it's easy to dispose of your own trash in one of the many on-course receptacles.
Baskets are Mach V's in excellent repair.
As many others have mentioned, $1/round is getting away with highway robbery here. Throw in a little more if you're able, as you'll see every dollar of it out on the course. Thanks Bill!
Cons: Tee signs only list the hole number with no diagram or distance information. This can be a bit of a hindrance for the many tourists and first-timers that come to play, but taking a map and a scorecard from the mailbox at the start of the round easily solves that problem. Most pins are visible from the tee, so you shouldn't be too stuck even without these aids.
Flip succeeds on the rich creativity of its design, and not necessarily through harsh punishment of off-target shots. It's possible to gamble and lose yet recover well enough to make par. Players equating a 5-disc rating with masochistic difficulty will likely leave underwhelmed.
Other Thoughts: Flip may not be perfect, but it definitely qualifies as the best of the best. In my mind, design and beauty are the two most important elements of a good course, and Flip excels in both areas. Everything else (concrete pads, benches, more intangibles than a blue-chip point guard) is just gravy. The fact that Bill has singlehandedly created this wonder and graciously opened it up for the disc golfing public to enjoy is nothing short of amazing. It's easy to get caught up in nitpicking elite courses, so instead I'm purposing to recognize Flip City for what it is - a secluded gem that earns its ranking among the best in the world.
29 of 29 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 11 Not
Pros: Not crowded
Length AND ace runs
Challenging off-camber basket placements
Cons: Somewhat remote location, but I think that is also a good thing as it cuts down on player traffic.
Other Thoughts: We were able to mob golf (I know, cardinal sin of DG) with a group of eight players on a late Friday afternoon and only had to let two normal sized groups pass. There was really nobody else on the course; mind you we were fully prepared to split up the group if it was necessary.
After about hole four or so, it felt like we were playing on a fairy tale landscape that reminded us of the Lord of the Rings. Very few flat fairways and the greens around the basket were very sloped and fast.
I kept comparing Flip to Kensington Toboggan. I still think the Toboggan is more epic in terms of elevation and the shots required throughout. However, Flip holds its own with the elevation and intensity while providing better overall experience in terms of landscaping, fun factor, playability, and charm.
8 of 19 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 18 Not
Pros: Great elevation changes, challenging fairways, multiple rest areas, and even bathrooms. Consistently well kept and clean. Weekly league night on Wednesday. Camping sites available as well.
Cons: A little far away from the highway, and no night golf.
Other Thoughts: Excellent course every time, look forward to it every year while I am on vacation. If you can only play one course for the rest of your life this is the one.
5 of 23 people found this review helpful.
Mecca for Disc Golfers
16 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: - Concrete pads on the long tees (extra large pads plus foul line and run off)
- Both short (dirt) and long (concrete) tee positions
- Extremely well thought out design
- Easy to navigate from hole to hole
- Excellent use of given terrain, with lots of use of elevation where possible
- Good mix of risk/reward
- Trash cans every few holes
- Benches and pavilions are plenty so you can take a break when needed
- No gimmicky holes
- Multiple lines to each basket
- 30 acres of land for 24 holes!!! (At times I would forget I'm in someone's back yard.)
- Port-a-potties on site (multiples even)
- Camping available
- Rough isn't very thick and there are paths mowed in the rough to help locate errant discs
- Lots of great little aesthetic touches that add character (rock sculptures, the basket design in the grass, the quartz rock with the metal tracks wrapped around it, etc...)
- Scorecards are provided
- It's only $1/round! (The course is worth more if you asked me)
- Good mix of long and short holes (plenty of long holes for big arms, and lots of ace run opportunities)
- Gorgeous setting with all the types of trees, hills, valleys, grasslands, and glacial rock deposits.
Cons: - Not a single one!
Other Thoughts: Bill has created THE destination course for Disc Golfers IMHO. Most courses I have played might have a single signature hole, or a couple if you're lucky. At Flip City EVERY hole is signature, and I don't think that's an exaggeration. We played 3 rounds over 2 days, and I never dreaded playing a single hole. Bill has shared his passion for disc golf with the public, so let's please treat his land and this course with the respect that it deserves! It is criminally under-priced at $1/round IMHO.
16 of 18 people found this review helpful.
You owe it as a disc golfer to put a fiver in Bills honor box.
2 Helpful / 14 Not
Pros: It is a monument to love of the game and the land.
It is brilliantly designed.
In many ways it defines modern disc golf.
Cons: Criminally under priced.
Other Thoughts: This is the 9th coarse we visited on our summer vacation and the 3rd in the top ten.
Our dog Murray had to wait tied to a pole in the players area, he made friends, people are generally good.
2 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Lives up to the hype!
15 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: -Immaculately clean
-2 sets of tees, longs are beautifully poured concrete
-inexpensive (worth way more than a buck)
-GREAT use of elevation.
- Rock gardens create a unique feel.
- Overall beautiful scenery and location.
- Not overrun, even on a beautiful sunny Saturday.
Cons: -No water carry.
-Very basic tee signs.
-Remote location. Bring plenty of water and snacks
Other Thoughts: I'm going to discuss my "cons" first because they'll take almost no time at all. It would be really nice if Bill's property had a stream running through it or a pond to throw over. But it doesn't, and in my mind a gimmicky fake water hole would be worse than not having one. I'm not willing to deduct points for something the land didn't provide. Bill's property is in the middle of nowhere, and there is no place right nearby to buy drinks/snacks/lunch/whatever. Bring your own and you'll be fine.
Now for the good. Flip City is located on a piece of property blessed with rolling hills, thick woods and grassy meadows. As you can imagine this leads to some epic disc golf holes including uphill, downhill and sidehill shots. Very few baskets after the first were left on a level lie, and those that were level were also well guarded. Despite the difficulty the course plays quite fairly. It is more of a test of skill than a course that punishes you needlessly. On one hole (5A) that none of us could figure out a solid route on we had one member of the group (the only guy who'd played Flip previously) throw a huge sky hyzer that plummeted through the trees guarding the basket to card an easy deuce. Seeing that made me realize that there really were no unfair holes, but that I would have to improve the way I think about the game to score well here.
There are benches at every hole, and the rock gardens provide a unique opportunity to take a break from discing while leaving your mark at Flip.
Players of all skill levels can enjoy Flip without becoming overly frustrated due to the natural beauty of the course. However this is NOT a course I would bring a newer player to unless they were prepared to struggle with putts rolling away and somewhat tighter lines than they may be used to.
I have been looking forward to playing Flip City for a couple years now, and came in somewhat prepared to be let down. I was concerned that the course might be more of a cult classic, and not live up to the hype generated by it's fanatical followers. But I'm here to tell you that Flip delivers a unique disc golf experience that is both enjoyable and challenging. As along as you understand that Flip is one man's dream, and is maintained by that one man, you should be willing to make allowances for things like rudimentary tee signs and appreciate the amenities like benches, shelter houses and perfectly poured and nicely shaped tee pads. Flip may not be perfect, but the imperfections are minor, and are part of the character and charm of the place. I wouldn't want it any other way.
15 of 18 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: At night, when I crawl into bed and close my eyes, I replay the round I had at Flip City and it gives me an overwhelming and comforting sense of peace and serenity. It helps me fall asleep almost instantly.
When I arrived at Flip City on an early Monday morning with my family, Bill quickly came out and welcomed us. Ever since I got hooked on disc golf a little over five years ago, I've known about Bill's creation, Flip City, since it greeted me every day on the front page of DGCR under "Top Courses". Meeting and shaking hands with the man who created this magnificent place was something I've been looking forward to for several years.
After sliding some money into the deposit box, we teed off and we started what is now one of the most memorable rounds of my entire life. I could write a narrative about the round I played but I won't put you through that.
The incredible attention to detail shown with the hundreds of rock formations coupled with a very, very fun design and an extraordinary piece of land makes this course a 5.0.
I'll elaborate on the these three biggest pros (detail, design, and land) below.
1. The detail. Flip City has incredible attention to detail. It's as if every single inch of this massive 24-hole course is immaculately planned. Whether it's the rock cairns on basically every hole, or rough that has lines mowed through it which makes finding your disc easy, to carefully cared after fairways. Even though this property is huge, it's taken care of like it's my grandma's 100 square foot garden. The love Bill has for this place is very apparent. Thank you for all the work you do, Bill.
2. The design. What a fun round this is!! This course flows beautifully. We only needed to look at that map once or twice. The holes are diverse, challenging, and extraordinarily fun. There's a good balance of right/left, short/far, up/down. There's risk/reward and everything one could want in a disc golf course.
3. The land. Oh golly! Bill's backyard is a wonderland with it's rolling hills and big trees. It would be fun just to walk through his backyard, let alone play a round of the best disc golf on Earth here.
This course truly is one of the best courses on Earth. There's no doubt about it.
Cons: Just a select few. I'll be terse.
Bugs: The mosquitos and flies were straight up nasty.
Signs. The tee signs just had number on them. No distances (on score card) or layout of the hole. Also, not all holes had cement tees yet (but he's very close to being done with this).
No water holes. I like water holes, but Flip has none. No big deal though.
Other Thoughts: Amazing. Best of the best. The five-hour trip was worth every second. I highly, highly recommend driving out to Flip City and checking it out. It's a euphoric experience that any disc golfer should consider taking a trip to have.
14 of 15 people found this review helpful.
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