3 Helpful / 3 Not
Middle of Pack for Charlotte Courses
Pros: Good signage that gives hole info and layout.
Course is easy to navigate.
Course has a good variety of holes that require an array of shots to score well.
Benches and trash cans at most if not all holes.
Multiple tee pads and baskets on most holes.
Course has other amenities, bathrooms, playgrounds, etc.
Course doesn't get in the way of others in the park.
Cons: Course can get very muddy when it rains.
The park itself can attract sketchy people. Always be on the lookout of who is around you and your group. I wouldn't recommend playing this course alone.
No tee signs or information for the Skillborne holes.
Other Thoughts: Even though Kilborne may lack some factors of some other Charlotte courses (Renny, Hornet's), it is still fun to play. If you are not from the area and have time, I would suggest playing at least once.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: This course was an absolute blast to play! And thanks to a couple of local players - sorry, can't remember your names! - who provided me some insight into lines and distances!
Though tight in spots, the fairways were mostly open with only a few trees to navigate. And except for a few instances, getting back to the fairway and beyond after a bad kick was easy.
And the signage was SUPERB! Loved the hole layouts on the signs. I wish more folks would do that. Multiple baskets and tee pads add an extra incentive to stay and play multiple rounds
Cons: Can't really think of any. I just kept telling my new found friends how much I enjoyed the course.
Other Thoughts: One interesting fact about the course was the number of doglegs right off the tee pad. You had to shape a lot of shots from the get-go, but like I mentioned before, miss your line and you ain't all that bad.
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Skillborne or Not, Very Interesting
Pros: Kilborne TPC is quite good, and has an 18 hole layout that can be played with numerous options, because most holes have two tee pads, as well as two baskets. Skillborne (long tee to long pin) layout I played required just about every throw I can think of, excluding almost any elevation change. Trees provide obstacles is some form on every hole, and several are densely wooded with very tight windows (especially on Skillborne). Both accuracy and distance are keys to success on this very technical course.
Cons: The course it's self is very good, in my opinion, but there are some cons. The equipment is all very functional, but the concrete tees were sometimes on the small side, the buckets on the baskets were on the shallow side, and signage left much to be desired. No tees had signs to illustrate shape or distance, but the baskets were all numbered at least. The flow of the course was not easy to follow, luckily we joined up with locals who knew where to go. Many baskets and or tees are often visible at the same time, and transitions between holes can be difficult to negotiate I would say. This course was the most crowded I visited in the city, in terms of other disc golfers. Several groups playing the short layout caught up with us and played through, while we traversed the Skillborne layout. Pace was slow. I found a bit of standing water on the first fairway, but after that the course was entirely dry.
Other Thoughts: Overall I liked Kilborne TPC a lot, and rate it excellent based mostly on versatility and difficulty. Not as nice as many of the other courses in the area, but still a good one. Thanks to Adam and Jim for hosting my last round of 2012. If you plan to try this one out, do yourself a favor and print the map. Somewhat reminds me of Elon Eager Beaver with less water and more distance.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Don't get killed
Pros: -Nice park in Charlotte with a fun disc golf course. Course flows very well and has no long transitions.
-Benches and trashcans are on every hole. I don't remember any litter laying around so it's well maintained.
-There is a practice basket by the course kiosk, it's labeled "0" and the course is very close to the parking lot.
-I played the worlds layout and #15 is AWESOME. One of the coolest par 4's I have played. It plays uphill and your approach shot is nicely downhill on an island green with water in play. That was definitely my favorite on the course.
-#18 is a another great hole. Teeshot is in the woods and then becomes open after 165' feet. It's a great finish to Kilborne.
-Good bit of variety here, doglegs, uphill/downhill on a few holes, open, wooded, and an island green.
-Great teesigns on the course, very accurate and it's easy to find the basket by looking at them.
-LONG teepads. I had no foot faults today because they are about 12 feet long.
-Two pin positions or two teepads on most holes. Not on the ace runs though but one of them is very tough.
-Course kiosk is beside #1, which is right of the giant field and parking lot. IIf you didn't bring a map, which is still recommended.
-Out of bounds isn't too bad on any holes. I didn't lose any discs. There was no tall grass or anything. Nicely groomed.
-I had no problems finding the holes, there ARE next tee signs from the longer transitions. If you look closely, there is an arrow pointing you straight ahead to #5 after you finish #4. Go straight ahead.
Cons: -You see in the previous review that the bathrooms are not marked. No, no they are not. The men's is to the right from what I saw so keep that in mind.
-#3's green in the short needs to be a cleared out a bit and #4 to the rightside can result in a lost disc but that's the only hole you should be conserned in losing a disc.
-Very sketchy. Some suspicious looking people hang around here. I didn't see any homeless people follow me but don't be surprised. This is in the "real bad part of town". In reference to my title, I am saying this can be very scary. You won't get killed (I was joking) but homeless people may be hitting up for money. This is why I woundn't recommend this for families who have small children.
-The entrance is very hard to find. If we didn't bring a GPS, we would probably be lost. Address is 2600 Kilborne drive.
-#14's basket is a bit tilted, it also doesn't catch as well as the others. The baskets catch okay but are very old.
-After a significant rainfall, the course can be very, very muddy. Don't bring your newer shoes.
Other Thoughts: Overall, the layout can't be much better however, I didn't like #9 at all, only because it's almost impossible to not hit a tree, but it's a great layout. I don't like that it's in the bad part of town but this course has some memorable holes, particularly #15 which I described in the pros as AWESOME. It provides a challenge for any players because a lot of the holes are doglegs which make it unique and interesting. The fun holes or standout would be #5, it's an easy straight wooded hole, #7 is a sidearmer's ace run, #13 is a more open short hyzer shot, #15 is the toughest hole, goes uphill for the teeshot and the approach goes downhill into an island green with a tough tunnel shot. #18 is the finishing hole that can't be 2'd unless you put a bit of mustard on it and give it a nice turn.
Overall, the course is worth the play, even though it's the most sketchy in Charlotte, you have plenty of holes to look forward to.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
From a beginners view
Pros: Truly a very nice very well laid out course. Some holes can help you build some confidence and others if you are like me " a newbie" make you realize you have a long way to go! Great course over all. I can't wait to go back!
Cons: Not to much. I played it right after the worlds were in town so the pins were moved to even deeper locations. A few holes had vague markings to get to the next hole. No biggie though.
Other Thoughts: Great course to get your legs wet on and keep coming to for years! Hit a birdie from over a hundred feet out on 18! First time I hit one from that distance. Smiled all the way home!
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Respect The Krewe
Pros: This course has a great layout that really makes you shape good shots. Consistent tee pads with an alternate set of tee pads for a longer tougher layout on most holes. These longer tee pads have minis set in the concrete. Consistent baskets. Nice arrows of various different kids all over the place to help you find the next tee. Nice paths through the course to help you get around. A good variety of shots and several well designed holes that make good use of the land. The fun level on this course is high and should be that way for just about any skill level even though it is a tough challenging course. Set in a park that is nice with a playground and some ball fields. Bathrooms are near the playground. There definately appeared to be a good local crowd that loves and takes care of this course and I am very thankful for them and the work that they do.
Cons: Map on course sign is not accurate. Older baskets. Tee signs are not accurate as they are from an older layout. The bathrooms were not marked mens or womens so you kinds had to peek in and see if there was a urnal or not (the mens was on the right as you look at it from the playground, at least there was a urnal in there). In the middle of the afternoon and a weekday there was quite a bit of traffic, I can only imagine what this place would be like on the weekend.
Other Thoughts: I am reviewing this course after my practice round for the 2012 Am World Championships. This seems to be another one of those courses in the area with a lot of history behind it. It is definitely worth playing if you are in the area. There were times deep in the forest when you migh get turned aorund and not really know directions. Based on the way some holes were layed out I thought for sure we were about to cross a hole that I had already played, but that was not the case. That does not mean that you won't find several baskets in similar places. Make sure you are throwing to the right basket. I always have a lot of respect for local clubs or groups of people and the work that they do on courses. I know it was mentioned in the PDGA's info for this course that a local group has done a lot of work on this course and I highly respect this group.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Aging but Solid Offering
Other Thoughts: Course is in a multi-use neighborhood level park of about 50 acres. Typical of courses/parks in this area, it is sited on rolling piedmont landform under near climax canopy. Kilbourne TPC is largely sequestered from other park activities and circles the park perimeter in a roughly counter clockwise fashion.
Initially installed in 1991 as Charlotte's 2nd permanent 'pole-hole' course, it has undergone at least 2 major revisions for various reasons. As a mature course, under the 'care' of the local DG community, it has aged gracefully, despite the large amount of foot traffic it receives due to its central Charlotte location. Reviewer has not visited the site in a decade, so while the review will address the current situation, some reference to the past will be unavoidable.
Amenities at the park are above average. Kilbourne's routing features returning 9s and is intuitive with the exception of a rough transition between hole 8 and tee 9. Overall park renovations have forced some major redesign around the turn, resulting in #s 8 & 9 being virtual duplicates. This deviation from the original has substantially weakened the course's design; subsequent adjustments have failed to fully compensate for this loss. Equipment is above average. Short tee pads are superior, while the 14 long tee pads are shorter and might be considered undersized. Signage adequately expresses current conditions with the exception of the course map at the 1st tee. At the time of writing, all long pin positions have been removed except #s 15 &16. Course has some drainage issues that will moderately affect play; the worst of which are #1's fairway and approach, #14's fairway and #15's tee area.
As one might expect, this course will reward flat, straight shots of up to 300', but overall the course, especially from the short tees, is decidedly 'clock-centric'. This means a decided advantage is given to stable clock spin shot shapes off the tee. This is truer on the back 9 and is amplified by the back's greater length and use of elevation changes. The demand for supreme fade control is not especially rigorous at Kilbourne. Elevation changes at Kilbourne are slight, and the cross-hill examples are more receptive to fades from clock-spin shot shapes. Ob areas are rare and are either clearly marked or intuitive.
As is the case with many other Charlotte area courses, the back 9 plays considerably longer and tougher than the front. Fairly unique for any golf course, nearly every hole at Kilbourne is either blind or semi-blind from the tee, so some local knowledge (or previous rounds) is (are) needed in order to score well. Despite this fact, fairways at this course are some of the widest, best defined and most forgiving of any wooded course this reviewer has played; there is plenty of room for variations/inaccuracies of any given line, without fear of serious penalty. Roughs can be very penal for the serious gaff, but are well worn in the areas with highest foot traffic. Generous recovery chances are available while scrambling. In addition, fairways are smoothly graded, very clear of debris and the clay substrate is thoroughly compact, opening up the roller game somewhat (a couple of fairways actually have volunteer turf established). This is somewhat rare for a wooded course.
#4 is one of the first area incarnations of the 'split' fairway concept and was one of this reviewer's favorite holes when the course first opened. This hole's style need be in the vocabulary of any course designer, as multiple route options from the tee offer some of the highest 'play' value for golfers, despite the labor intensity needed to create them. The designer's hand will be evident, but not dictatorial so.
Long throwers have been known to overwhelm this course, and this advantage has become even more pronounced over the years, which should be a reasonable expectation based on the course's forgiving nature and an average hole length of about 300'. It should also be noted that this is in part due to sections of the initial course's design being based around short-lived tree species (loblolly pine). Where unprotected, these trees are now largely absent. The few that remain in fairways are either diseased or past mature.
The fact that long throwers could overwhelm the course was probably the prime motivator for the creation of the 'Skillbourne' layout, which now consists only of extended tees on 14 holes with additional pins on 2 holes. These tees, with a couple of exceptions, are mere extensions of the existing lines of play and all add extreme 'tightness' to the tee shot. Frequently, the golfer is asked to throw out of tiny chute (how does 6' wide @ 40' on a 300'+ hole sound? Tight?). Often a tree is centered directly in the line of play. In a couple of instances, the golfer may 'select' from a group of uniformly tiny windows that vary slightly in distance from the tee. Despite the fact that several of these newer tees are canted to the right of the original line of play, playing from these long tees even more greatly favors stable clock spin shot shapes (than the original course), especially those from a RHBH thrower; any roller game has been effectively neutralized as well. In instances where there is a tree centered in the line of play, it actually results in a Hobson's choice, defaulting to the previously mentioned advantage in shot shape.
Kilbourne's greens are perhaps the least punishing and most forgiving of any area course of this length or greater. In the main they feature less than 2% slope and are largely 'open' within the circle. Several are 'pocketed', however, and these few are fairly well congested with obstacles. They add some variety, which was previously missing, to the approach/short game, and are the results of renovation.
Despite its age, Kilbourne TPC, is still a solid course that has held up well over time. One must attribute this to the efforts of the local community, who demonstrate an almost religious fervor and dedication to their facilities. Reviewer feels the course offers excellent play value for golfers of all levels, especially advanced level players. Until you can shoot in the low 40s here, every time, there is no reason to feel it outdated or unchallenging.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: - Loved this course. Well maintained, a lot of trash cans and well planned out holes.
- Potential to score very well here, if you are throwing it well, it shouldn't be that difficult.
- Mostly wooded, but not too tight to where it would get frustrating.
- Forces you to have a bunch of different shots. If you can throw FH and BH equally it will be much easier.
Cons: - Not many to speak of
- Could offer some more variety in regards to hole lengths and style.- A lot of the holes seemed very similar to each other.
Other Thoughts: I played this during the CAC, so there were some signs and I didn't have trouble finding the next holes. I could see how you might if you played it alone.
Really some potential to score well here. If you are hitting your lines within about 4 or 5 feet either way you will have a great round. I'm not particularly good, but I shot a +2 (taking a 7 on one hole). Not much ob if at all here, so it shouldn't be a problem.
I would say it's worth the trip if you're in the area and don't really want to play one of the harder courses.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Straightforward wooded course
Pros: The course plays through a flat wooded park with a couple more open holes. There are two layouts here, the original layout that offers a nice approachable course, and the skillborne layout that utilizes longer tees and additional tougher basket placements on many holes. It's cool to have these options, it allows players to choose a tee and pin combination appropriate to their skill level and their mood.
Both layouts offer a nice mix of hole shapes, nothing drastic but a balanced set of shots are required to score well here. Birdies are readily available, especially with the shorter tees and baskets, but there's nice punishment if you get off the fairway. The original tees have good signage with hole distance and layout, and the skillborne tees had laminated paper signs when I played that had basic hole information.
Cons: At times it wasn't obvious where to go next, or whether there was a long tee/basket for a particular hole. Some better signage on and between holes would go a long way here. Some fairways still have stumps sticking up, which takes away from the look of the course and makes it feel unfinished.
Many of the holes are similar lengths, especially on the original layout, which makes things get a little repetitive at times. A couple skillborne baskets are just tucked into the forest with no good line, I get wanting to make it tougher but it introduces a lot of luck at times.
Other Thoughts: This is a fun course, with great options that make it an approachable but challenging course for most levels of players. True beginners will find it a little tough, with woods to get into on errant shots. With the tee/pin combinations available, everyone else can find a good challenge here, the long tees and pins are a good test for better players.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Defined fairways offer obvious lines for players to hit. Missing runs the risk of some brutal "roughs," as going off fairway often means being deep in a pine forest with bleak prospects for a recovery shot. Good balance in regards to left- and right-turning holes, with slight topographical changes throughout. The mostly open and flat greens reward safe tee shots with easy putts for birdies.
- Alternative Skillborne lay out provides a solid test for experienced and advanced players.
- Long concrete tees, efficient signage, and good baskets. Benches throughout.
Cons: - Although allowing for a solid mix of left and right, and to a lesser extent up and down, several of the holes seem a bit repetitive with wide defined fairways tightly lined by dense forest comprised predominantly of mature pines.
- Some scattered broken glass, but nothing bad once you get farther into the course.
Other Thoughts: - Kilborne strikes me as a great course for established players looking to up their game. It forces one to execute both their drives and putting. Skillborne ups the ante significantly with the longer tees and pin placements.
- One thing I personally dislike in course design is when a swath of forest is blatantly cleared, with a carpet of conspicuous stumps. Kilborne has several holes of this nature, and while I do not count it as a con against the course's rating, I do feel it detracts in some small way from the aesthetic aspect of the course.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
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