Great course for big arms
9 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: The redesign added alot of different holes to the course that were not there before, and reworked the old holes to add more distance to them. The course starts with several holes that force some controlled distance with scattered mature trees in play. Then, the course shoots across Buffalo bayou, and takes you into the woods across the bayou. This collection of holes is the most technical, with tighter lines than the rest of the course, and a little terrain in play. One hole forces a loong blind right curve, with the basket on a rise with wicked rollaway potential. The bayou comes into play on several holes on the far side, but none more than the bayou crossing shot. This adds some intrigue to 2-3 holes. These far side holes IMO are the jewel of this course, bringing the most interesting shots and terrain into play.
The course crosses back across the bayou, and switches back to more open, flat holes, that test your controlled distance driving, with a few obstacles in the way. The holes past the dog park are mostly open, power holes that you will need 300+ distance to shoot well on. Unlike its previous 9 hole layout, this course is not a deuce or die course full of birdie runs. In fact it now is more the other end of the spectrum, you will need a good rip off most tee pads for a shot at par. There are at least a few trees in play on every hole (except hole 21), plus OB paths, so pure distance is not the only thing you will need here, however, the trees are too few in number on most holes to really punish you unless you hit one. Thus this course does not require you to hit very tight lines, nor does it particularly favor lefties or righties, since there are multiple ways around to the basket on most holes. The reforestation clumps in original 9 area are used very well, and do restrict lines in some holes, but overall this course is pretty open and forgiving.
Those who like longer holes to grip it and rip it, and not super technical plinko holes in tight woods, will love this course. You will get loads of chances to use your distance drivers, and there's not much shule to get buried in, while still enough trees to keep the holes from being all the same. However, short drives are punished here more than errant, long drives. The course is challenging from both long and short tee pads, and will stretch your arm.
Also, this course is in a great location for players inside the loop, and in a good neighborhood where you don't have to worry about
Cons: This course suffers from several unavoidable problems. It's in Houston, so it is very flat. The holes across the Bayou bring some terrain into play, but mostly it's just flat, like many Houston courses. The designers here had a long skinny piece of land to work with, so the general down and back flow on the near side of bayou is somewhat set in stone as a result. That being said, they use distance on this course to overcome a general lack of terrain, and only scattered trees, which gets a little stale for me by hole 21. The designers are limited by the canvas they had to work with(ie not solid forest) , but it feels like they overcompensate with distance to much and too often, and it makes the last several holes boring for me.
This course doesn't do a lot to keep big arms honest, and distance really helps on course. The difference in length from long to short tees seems minute in some cases, even the short tees are going to be long from someone throwing less than 300ft.
The dirt tee pads and colored posts are functional, but basic. Considering that most will need their max distance on many holes, some kind of more permanent, level tee pads (rubber or concrete) would be nice.
Flow is also an issue on this course, as it can be hard to navigate the bayou crossing, and back, without a course map. Also, hole 12 is hard to find from 11 (its towards the practice basket)
One of the biggest issues I have with this course is so many of the holes are long for the sake of being long, and seemingly stretched out to utilize as much of the park as possible. Many of the holes are in that gray area of distance, 350-500 where it's a tough par 3, but they probably didn't want to make it par 4 because they aren't very technical holes and big arms will still bomb them for 3s. Many courses will have easier and harder par 3s, but the setup here gets old. If they wanted a tough course, make several of the holes a little longer and call more of them par 4s. Otherwise, make the short tees shorter so the course is more fun for more players. As it stands now, on holes 14-21 it gets repetitive. The holes are challenging just because they are long, but they are not memorable and not that fun IMO.
The earlier holes on this course have better protected baskets with more trees, and reforestation areas to make them more interesting, or throwing off the top of amphitheater. The bayou holes have water in play and some technical shots and terrain. The holes after you walk past the dog park are forgettable.
There are several things that could make the back end of this course better. Intentionally letting some reforestation areas grow in strategic spots (right side of hole 17) would be environmentally friendly would restrict lines and improve the holes. Planting a few smaller trees, with protective tubing around them, would instantly change several of the holes (16 & 21). Putting one basket on ad terrace, or throwing a pile of fill on a fairway or two to create some terrain would also help spice up existing holes.
Across the bayou has the most interesting holes, and there is a long walk through the woods from hole 5 to hole 6 that has tons of terrain. Every time I play here, I can't help but wonder why the walk when the could create some very interesting holes here. Especially if you kept them short and technical, it would give this course more variety and a balance to the steady diet of bomber holes that the course is full of.
I could see this course being rounded out to 27 holes, with more diverse shot types. Put two holes in the woods between 5 and 6, then another wooded hole between 6 and 7.
The low spot by the pool fence is an interesting area, why not put a short hole there after 13?
With a little reshuffling, 3 more holes could be found on this land (even if they are short) and this would be a 27 hole course in town with challenging long holes, but also birdie opportunities and some technical and memorable line.
It seems like the course overall fills the area allotted for it, but some of the most interesting pockets sit idle, and instead players walk through them. The layout of this park, and the bayou, force some of the walks between holes, but some are avoidable and could be holes instead.
This course is fun if you have a big arm and don't like lots of trees, but its short on very interesting holes, and for how long is it, just isn't than fun. I'd rather drive 15min further and play 2 quick rounds at Moffit rather than 1 long round here with all the walks btw forgettable holes. Some players love this course, and the location is hard to beat. I like parts of this course, but overall its not a course that I rush out to play, and not one I would take new players to. Its too hard for newbs, and not interesting enough for advanced players. I dont understand what level of player this course is catered to, make a shorter set of tees, make it more technical, or both.
Other Thoughts: I remember playing this course when it was nine holes, before the drought took so many trees. Back then it was a much shorter course. Back then as a novice, I found it fun. It has changed alot with the new layout, and I realize that without those trees, those old holes wouldn't be the same now, so the designers opted to add significant distance to almost every hole to up the challenge. They didn't have much choice, but having shorter "short" tees would still be nice. I appreciate all the work that went in to expand this park, and I mean no disrespect to the many volunteers who put their time and effort into the park as it stands now. Getting any park from 9 holes to 21 is a HUGE step, and I applaud the locals for making this happen. However, I personally prefer a more technical course that rewards accuracy as well as distance, and this course is all about distance. I'm sure I am not alone in liking the holes across the bayou the best, and wishing there were more of them. I feel there's room to do just that.
I believe this course has room for improvement, and I hope the locals share this view and continue to tweak and improve this course. If/when that happens, this course can certainly achieve a higher rating, but until then, there are lots of better options in Houston area.
9 of 13 people found this review helpful.
My Kind Of Course
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: It's not very often I say this about a course, but I genuinely liked this one from the start. True that this is mostly a flat course with few challenges except trees, but there is enough here to make most golfers think about a good many shots. I approached hole 4 with some apprehension with its throw over the bayou as I do most holes, but that turned out to be the easiest for me here. I ended up getting a birdie on that one. The whole time I played here, I only hit one tree. That was on hole 9. Even so, I got par on that one on a great 75-foot putt. I found the flow to be good between holes with one exception which I will mention in the cons. I can see why this course is so popular. The layout is good, the park is nice, and the holes are not too intimidating. If I was to recommend an overall course for someone to play in Houston, it would probably be this one. Great overall course without too many obstacles and a good one to learn on as well.
Cons: The only con I found was the long walk between holes 9 and 10 back over the bayou bridge. I understand that some areas are like this due to available land in a park such as this, but even so, it is not so much to play a good course such as this one. And yes the short tee on hole 12 is gone, but I could tell where it had been and I played from the long tee anyway because the distance between the two was not that far. Not more than 50 feet anyway. I could mention the walk between holes 16 and 17, but that was not so long either. Very little else can I point out here.
Other Thoughts: This course was a pleasant surprise for me. I had probably one of the best first rounds I could have at any course I played anywhere. Kudos to the designers. They did an excellent job with the layout putting this one together and I know I will be back to play this one again many times.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Fun Recreational Course for Long Birdies
Pros: OK, let's be honest. This is a course that has medium long holes, fairly wide open fairways, with occasional trees to navigate around. Other than distance, there really wasn't much that was excruciatingly challenging. For me, the joy of this course was trying to place a 300-400 ft drive close enough to the basket to go for birdie--and that was from the white tees. There were enough trees to provide some shade, while waiting for others to throw. Although no cement tee pads, most of the tee pads were fairly level with one or two exceptions. Although many holes play next to the bayou, you would really have to go off course to lose a disc. The course was mowed. The tee boxes were marked. The baskets were generally visible. There were nice asphalt and gravel paths that could generally be used to walk from hole to hole. There were enough mild challenges to keep it mostly interesting... a few low ceiling, a few anhyzers RHBH. Good parking. It is true that the course runs fairly close to two busy streets, but they are far enough a way that an average amateur golfer doesn't have to worry about them. The baskets were generally really nice; however, there are a few holes that have freaky funnel shaped baskets (like #13) that can spit your disc out, even after a decent putt. Hole #4 across the bayou was fun and different. Hole #5 is a short low ceiling anhyzer (RHBH). Hole #12 is a tunnel shot through off the tee, as is hole #6 (only when playing from the blue tees).
Cons: The biggest con is probably the lack of really challenging holes (other than just pure distance) where you really have to think and nail a precision throw. It is also true that some of the holes can seem repetitive. But if you know what the course is, you can set your expectations accordingly and still have and enjoyable game. I think the course would be much nicer if it had cement tee pads. The walk from hole #9 to hole #10 is VERY long, backtracking past 3 different holes. There is also a very long walk between holes #13 and #14 and holes #16 and #17, and another long walk after hole #21 back to the parking lot. As stated above, many of the holes run next to busy streets. While these generally don't come into play for golfers with decent ability, I can see where they could cause problems for recreational golfers who may throw a little wide occasionally. If you can't throw 300-400 ft drives, I think this course might get pretty boring with a drive, upshot, putt, over and over. However, if you can drive 350-400 ft, you can try to go for birdie on nearly every hole, and that can also be a fun challenge.
Other Thoughts: Despite the mildly challenging holes and the somewhat repetitive throws, I did enjoy playing this course. It is a great place to practice drives or try out new discs because there is enough room to generally see the full flight of the disc without hitting trees or other obstacles. It is generally clean, mowed, and maintained. Good place to practice long precision drives IMHO.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
One of the best public courses in Houston area
Pros: +there are enough hazards around to keep your game interesting (especially if you follow the out of bound rules suggested on this site)
+I love the fact that there are long and short holes. this pretty much means I can play 2 courses here
Cons: -no tee pads
-this is a fairly open (light amount of trees but surrounded by roads) course so on a windy day you have to be careful with your shots
-Im not a pro but I have been playing for a while so Im decent and didnt have any water trouble but there are some intimidating water shots that can easily cause a new player to lose a disc. the good news is that I watched someone wade into the bayou to find their disc and it was only about 2 to 3 feet deep so if you can spot your disc you can retrieve it. just be aware that the water is moving very quickly. (I read another review that talked about a place down river that might be a good place to check if your disc floats away too fast to find)
Other Thoughts: the first 9 holes are not connected to the rest of the course. once you finish 9 you walk around to the other side of the bayou. the walk is time consuming but the positive note is that if you are short on time you can play a quick 9 without feeling too bummed about leaving mid game since you have to walk back towards the parking lot.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: short tees are fun , not alot of trouble to get into. should get quite a few birdies. somewhat repetitive. BUT....the long boxes make this a great course . with minor elevation change and being played around a bayou with walking path and beyond ob's, this course is very challenging . For me, it is relatively easy to shoot around par , but if you hope to shoot a "hot" round (-5 to -7/ 1020 + rated ) you will have to flirt with some ob's and shape some shots . the course does not have many densely wooded areas , but the ob's make controlling shots a big factor. You have to use your noggin and risk/reward comes into play a good bit. A big , accurate arm will get you a couple extra birdies (and i believe it should ) . you can go out and lettem fly here , but you better know where they are goin'.
Cons: couple long walks between holes , but , i would much rather walk a little than sacrifice the integrity of a hole or have a couple "filler" holes . concrete boxes will be great addition if /when they get em'.
Other Thoughts: ima 984 rtd pro with a 450 + arm. this course lets me "play". it is not just a big arm course , you must have accurate up shots and hit some putts to shoot really well here . the short tees also give newer players a good course to play . great combo .
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Jester is King
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: One of the best of the public park disc golf experiences that I have had. Easy to get to from loop 610. Rivals Tom Bass as the best course in the county. To play disc golf like this you usually have to drive out into the deep suburbs. I think it is a great example of what can be accomplished in a multi-use park environment. Best part of the course is #4 through #9, where there is more interaction with the Bayou and the bayouscape. Some I know like to play #4 - #9 three times for 18 holes. With subtle elevation changes near the Bayou and enjoyable differences between the dual tees, which are correctly marked and rated based upon the PDGA ratings of white and blue. A regularly mowed park environment with bathrooms and some picnic tables, and plenty of parking either in the lot or along T. C. Jester Blvd, this is the sort of course that if you brought a picnic basket and a cooler you could spend all day playing. Has other park amenities including a swimming pool, dog-park, softball fields, amphitheater, playgrounds and exerscape.
The adjacent neighborhood, Oak Forest, is single family dwellings, and the environment at the park feels safe, friendly and family. In a partially shaded park with walking trails, the two or three fairways that do cross the trail occur near the tee-box. The following deserves special mention:
(1) Creative use of the available park space and subtle elevation changes, including the thrill of throwing over White Oak Bayou #4; (2) use of a row of trees to make a low ceiling dog leg right on #5; (3) the nature trail through the overgrowth from #5 to #6 is nice and kept clean by local disc golfers; (4) with a smaller green area, #6 is a little tricky to make the birdie from the white-tee and has a tight line through a gap in the tree-line for the blue tee; (5) the slightly down hill shot toward the bayou with risk reward basket placement on #7 is a creative use of the bayouscape elevation change; (6) the sky anhyzer throw either along or over the bayou #8 is a thrill; (7) the raised tee-boxes on the amphitheater on #13 reminds me of a ball golf tee-box; and (8) #21 while long, is on an area beaten down by the October high school track meets and allows for either a rhbh or rhfh roller for a birdie. The additional walking from #9 to #10, #13 to #14, #17 to #19 and from #21 to the parking lot, is worth the additional fun. The natural tees are in good shape even after over a year of heavy use.
Cons: On #10, you have to wait when pedestrians and cyclists are along a particular section of the walkway. #15 has a picnic table in what is the fairway if your shot goes left requiring additional care and attention by the golfer. For some the walking from #9 to #10 and #13 to #14, #17 to #19 and from #21 to the parking lot is a con, and I agree it is not an ideal flow but appears to be the best the course designers could do with the space allotted, yet, having played it many many times, for me, it does not detract from the disc golf experience for me. Be careful of some of the poison ivy on #5 and #6 and at the very end of the nature trial coming from #5 to #6.
Other Thoughts: With the expansion of the course to the west side of the Bayou, when the high school track team competitions occur in October the course will not be completely shut down and you can play #4-#9 a few times like we did in the last week of the HFDS Wednesday night Fall league. If you play all 21 holes, it is an approx. 3.7 miles.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -The course has dual tees (blue and white) that are very easy to see and are all present. They both have different shots on a few holes rather then just being longer.
-This course has a diversity of shots. There are short <200ft shots in the woods and then there are >500+ shots that you need a good drive to hope for a three. The excitment factor is here on a few holes, especially on hole number 4 where you have to get your throw about 220' over a bayou. There are several holes like that that are very unique for the Houston area.
-The tree has obstacles on about every hole, not so much that is becomes frustrating but enough that it does not get boring throwing in an open field.
-The course of 21 holes uses the entire narrow strip of land that the park is located on. Who ever designed this course did a great job utilizing every bit of land he could on this park.
-There are bathrooms and COLD water fountains near the parking lot over by the baseball fields.
Cons: -Natural tee pads. The ground at the tees is starting to become worn in and will only keep getting more worn in with the high density of players that comes through every day. Concrete tee pads would make this course great.
-From a logistical standpoint this course is a mess. After #9 there is a quarter of a mile walk back to #10 then after #13 there is a long walk to the next tee. No matter who designs this course or how it is designed this will always be a problem. There is not enough land that makes it so that the course runs smoothly. If a second bridge was built over the bayou then maybe someone can look at re-configuring the course so that there is not a lot of walking back.
-The back 6 or 7 holes were very repetitive and boring. The front few holes were all different but once you get to the final stretch of the course you are looking at 350' straight holes with trees guarding the basket on basically every shot.
-The course is heavy with walkers, no way to fix that just be careful when throwing.
Other Thoughts: This is a nice course for people that live inside of the city that do not want to drive out to the NW or S side of the city. This course trumps MacGregor Park and Anges Moffit in terms of excitement rating and being a better course. The new layout is leaps and bounds better then the previous layout and rumor among the locals is a new layout could be in the makings soon. This is a great course for the Houston area. A great place that is challenging and diverse.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice course with a mix of shots and distances.
Pros: Nice mix of shots, especially Hole 4, which is over the bayou. It's perfectly makeable, but just that bayou makes it seem so far. Hole 6 was a nice short surprise, for a birdie (playing from white tees). I liked the mix in distances, there were a few holes with tree obstacles, like 18 and 19, and I enjoyed hole 12 which is a tight, straight shot. As long as you stay out of the bayou (water), you won't have a problem losing discs.
Cons: I wish the walk from hole 9 wasn't so long and uneventful. A return bayou shot could have been fun. I also wish there wasn't such a long walk from hole 21 back to the parking lot. This is a well-used park, so be mindful of the other park users. I had a jogging couple walk up to the blue tee box on 15, sit down and start stretching! It's I good thing I was playing white tees that day.
Other Thoughts: This was my third course to play after MacGregor park and Jack Brooks Powell. I live in the Loop, so this is one of the closer courses to me.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 2 Not
New Jester Course
Pros: Uses the little land available and squeezes in 21 enjoyable holes. The bayou comes into play on a couple holes which makes for some interesting shots. I realize this may be a con to most, but I enjoy the long walks. While I enjoyed the old 9 hole course, this feels more like a regular disc golf course.
Favorite holes : 4, 7, 10,19
Cons: I hope the tee pads will eventually become concrete. The trees that were removed diminished the uniqueness of each hole. Sign me up when the city decides to replant trees in the future. Backups seem to occur often with the holes across the bayou. Different groups walk at different paces and there is a lot of walking.
Least Favorite hole : 11 (the drought really affected this one)
Other Thoughts: I read a lot about the drainage and the lack of trees. Lets get a couple things straight. First, if you have played a course that has had about 10 inches of rain in less than a month, there are going to be drainage issues. Second, not sure if some of you are aware but Texas just went through one of its worst droughts in history. A lot of trees have been removed. The "reforestation" that has been mentioned is actually debris left from the city after ripping out about 300 trees from the park. With all that being said I will admit that I am biased towards this course because it is my "home course". But hey, we are all guilty of a little homerism from time to time.
8 of 10 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: +A few of the holes are interesting, 4-8 I think, with one or two others scattered in there. The holes that played around the waterway made for some good play.
+It was close-ish to my hotel.
+Tried to make use of a thin piece of park land in the middle of a city.
Cons: -Boring. Repetitive. Lots of long holes that had me stepping up to the tee box and thinking "Ohh, time to arbitrarily huck my Striker on a hyzer line as far as I can in that general direction, again." By the end, the extra 3 holes felt more like a chore than 3 more fun holes.
-70% of the trees were of absolutely no consequence (might be lower % with leaves). I could just power down towards the pin, and even if I was 20 degrees off on my line, I'd be just as well off as if I had hit it dead on. One tree in the fairway makes much difference if I can throw anywhere around it and have a clear upshot to the basket.
-No concrete pads- 3 tee boxes were underwater.
-Speaking of water, the random 10' wide casual water hazards left from the rain 3 days ago did more to shape my lines than the trees did.
-Excessively long walks to 10 and 14. Getting to 10 had no sense of continuity to it at all, and actually had you walking past 7, 6, 4, and 3
-Lots of holes played along a major road
-The holes that play in the "Reforestation Project" were annoying because apparently that means that all tree debris should be left on the ground. So lots of bark, sticks/twigs, and junk to slip/twist/trip on while moving about.
Other Thoughts: I'm probably biased from NC woods DG, but long open, sparsely obstacled holes, over and over and over, just gets boring.
Lack of concrete, or other similarly resilient tees will keep any course below a 4 for me.
Lack of shot variety on the back 12 was what killed it for me. A light hyzer with my striker put me into easy upshot places no matter how accurate I was to the line I intended. An occasional straight shot was needed, but I never once had to throw an anny, and I parred 11 of the last 12. This may have been due to the few number of trees, and they're lack of leaves, who knows. If I played the course on a dry spring day, with concrete pads, probably would have gotten atleast 1 disc more.
9 of 14 people found this review helpful.
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