Tough. Tough. Tough.
26 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: Idlewild is a 24 hole course set in a super nice, multi-use park.
Concrete tee pads, in decent enough shape. Some could use some work, but no big deal. Most holes have one tee, some have two.
Mixture of baskets, but they all worked well enough. Some updates on these wouldn't be the worst thing. One pin position per hole, for the most part.
Distance. Everywhere. If you like long, winding holes, this is the place for you. You'll get open bombers, uphill hucks, tight tunnels, and anything else you can think of. There's a few shorter holes, but for the most part, you can expect plenty of legit par 4's, with placement being key.
Good use of elevation. There's not any top o' the world shots, but just about every hole has some sort of rolling hill incorporated.
Some holes have water as an obstacle, which is nice. No gigantic water carries, but several places where, if you get knocked by a tree, you could be in trouble.
Really nice landscaping, and tee signs. It's not quite country club nice, but not too far off. Navigation was relatively easy and the course has good flow.
Cons: I'm not a big fan of turf greens. I understand why they're used here, but they felt out of place and weird. Probably just a preference thing.
Idlewild is certainly not the most "accessible" course around...meaning new players, or players without bigger arms are going to get frustrated easily here.
Idlewild is a great course, especially if you're a top level player. I get it. What I don't like, is that as an Int player, I felt like I could go out there with a mid and putter, and score just as well as I could with my whole bag. In fact, I might score better just dinking and dunking my way through the course. There's places where it feels hard just for the sake of being hard. Of course, this is totally a personal feel, and will be different for every person.
For a course of this caliber, there should be at least two tees on every hole, and more than a single pin position. There's certainly plenty of space to do it.
Other Thoughts: Idlewild is a fun, tough, long course. I just didn't leave it feeling like I HAD TO come back and play it again, even though I'm glad I got the opportunity. Personally, I'd rather head up the road and play Lincoln Ridge.
Definitely a course you want to go play if you're in the area and make your own conclusions.
26 of 32 people found this review helpful.
Challenging with lots of elevation
4 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: Good tee pads/ good tee signs
Plenty of benches
bright colored baskets
free to play
Other Thoughts: This course was very well done with good use of elevation. Many tight shots that force you to be accurate though out the whole course. Many uphill shots may leave you exhausted playing on a hot day. There are not many short holes you will need a trusty driver for almost every hole. The 1000 foot hole was very cool with a big downhill slope towards a ball golf like green and a little river running all around it. Lots of OB to make you think your shots out better. I highly recommend this course and think everyone should play it at least once.
4 of 12 people found this review helpful.
The name says it all!
11 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - While its not the best maintained course I have ever seen, it still finishes high. When you take in the amount of acreage in up keeping this course its kept nice.
-The tee signage is probably the best I have seen. The multiply pin placements and having a marker on the side if the tee signs marking the pins was great!
- Even though the concrete is showing some wear the nice long boxes are in great condition.
-Shot variety is the spice of life here. With multiple "pure" placement shots of the tee, the second shot is key to success. With that said a hzyer line of the tee (rhbh) often force an anny or forehand on the approach.
-Coming from playing a lot courses that usually play 54 par from all tees this was a rude awakening. This course in my opinion is championship caliber. I was not ready for it by any means and put up a terrible showing by the end of the day but it was worth every second.
Cons: *Disclaimer* Every course has it cons, however I feel as if Idlewild's doesn't detract from its over all score as much as people would think. If you can look past the minor things, you see the beauty.
-Navigation. With added letter holes, multiple tee pads someone is bound to get lost here. A few well placed signs on the end of F, 12, and 13 short would negate this completely.
-Multiple pins on one hole. This was a new thing for me and didn't really enjoy it. On 3 the short basket gets in the way, for me at least, on the approach to the other pin. This is just more a nit pick though on my part.
Other Thoughts: Idlewild is a long course. If you are not in great shape and plan on playing all 24 holes pack a lunch and take a break halfway through. If you are remotely tired towards the end this course will eat you and spit you out. With that said this place sits on special land and you can feel it. Must play for any fan of high level disc golf... Even if you cant throw at a high level yourself!
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 15 Not
Pros: I cant say anything that hasn't already been stated. It's easily my favourite course.
Other Thoughts: Beautiful lines that require you to bring strategy into consideration. The follow was awesome and never felt rushed while playing. It was like having an entire course all to my self.
2 of 17 people found this review helpful.
Too much fun to pass up
0 Helpful / 16 Not
Pros: Technical, long,difficult, water, 24 holes...what more could you ask for?,
Cons: I have no complaints about Idlewild
Other Thoughts: Started playing here last fall, and as a beginner, it was an eye opener. WOW! This game is not easy! Played there all winter. Even in the snow. Have not even come close to par yet, but still have to list this as my favorite place to play. Playing all 24 holes is definitely a challenge, but the course is simply too much fun to pass up the chance.
0 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Top Tier Course
5 Helpful / 12 Not
Pros: - Very well maintained and groomed course
- Mutliple pin placements
- professional level
Other Thoughts: Idlewild is arguably the best course in the KOI Tri-State area if not in the entire US. The course is a mix of open distance holes combined with technical wooded fairways. This course is an incredibly challenging course that doesn't feel too hard due to the incredible quality of the design combined with the fun of playing it. Even holes that feel like gimme holes aren't necesarilly gimmes. Multiple pin placements keep the course feeling refreshed while changing it up and the water hazards combined with the tight technical wooded holes make this course an incredibly difficult but exciting course to play. If you get the chance and have not played here, you are doing a disservice to yourself by not playing here.
5 of 17 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 20 Not
Pros: From the well groomed fairways to the beautiful basket positions this course is absolutely perfect! if you have a chance to play this course it's well worth your time!
Other Thoughts: wish i could play this course much more often!
1 of 21 people found this review helpful.
What more can I say?
4 Helpful / 17 Not
Pros: To date, this is the best and most challenging disc golf course I've ever played. It has everything: elevation, water carries, OB, tight wooded lines, and open bombs. Always feels like you should be paying a green fee to play this course.
Cons: The walk from 16 to 17 crosses 11's fairway, but Idlewild is rarely busy enough for this to matter. The creek is getting clogged and has stagnant water often. Maintenance and upkeep is starting to slow down as the volunteers get older.
The letter holes were added later and really don't fit the original 18 much.
Other Thoughts: Prettiest course, most difficult course, and best designed course. Idlewild has it all.
4 of 21 people found this review helpful.
What a Pleassure
21 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: First, the stuff you'd expect from a top-level course:
Benches on most holes, plenty of trash cans, not much litter, great tee signs, well-defined fairways (mostly), solid baskets, large concrete tees, frequent elevation challenges, open and tight hole variety, great shot variety, multiple tees and multiple baskets for great re-playability, front and back end up near the parking lot, lots of Par5s and Par4s, water OB was there-but not too deep to recover your disc (except for one tee shot over the pond), well-defined greens and tee areas, "Facilities" on-site, bridges over ditches, rough is thick but not impassable, free. The "balance" is probably the best of any course I've played. As a lefty, I never felt like I didn't have a good line.
Cons: Not much here. I would have given it 4.75, if I could, because of the navigation challenges. I played the course on a Thursday morning and no one was there to help. I tried to line up a Course Guide, but couldn't get one on the short notice that I had. I know that the "Next Tee" was marked on the Tee Signs and a lot of the holes had red directional "Next Tee" signs, especially on the back, but frankly it was not enough. Adding to the Navigation issues, more than a few of the hole transitions are quite long. I'm sure that others will disagree, but my view of a 5-star course is that navigation and transitions should not be an afterthought. More work needs to be done here to make it deserve that fifth star, Another small quibble I had was the fairway/lines on some of the wooded holes were convoluted/random/luck over skill.
Other Thoughts: Beware the joggers and walkers. It wasn't a Con, but a few tee throws could conflict with other users in this multi-use park. Also, it is a long, grueling course that will require you to climb up and down and walk considerable distances. I'm just gald I didn't play this course in the summer. I cannot stress enough that this is not an easy course. I like that it sprinkles a few "breather" holes along the way, but this is a course that requires you to keep your mental game strong. It doesn't take much of a mental lapse to find yourself looking at a double or triple (or worse). Requires planning and placement for just about every shot. Allow 3+ hours to play, especially if you play in a group. As others have said, enjoy the beauty, the upkeep and the long hours that have gone into this course. Just don't hate it when it punishes the occasional errant throw.
21 of 21 people found this review helpful.
34 Helpful / 1 Not
Idolize the Wild!
Pros: Features 24 best of the best championship level holes playing over picturesque Kentucky rolling hills mixed with a few mostly open and mostly wooded technical fairways. Coming into play are elevation changes galore, creeks, ponds, tall grass, and island greens with a mix of par 3 and 4, and two 5s. Idlewild has phenomenal balance and variety from hole to hole and starts and ends with two of the best holes and 22 freaking awesome holes in-between them.
Amenities include excellent concrete tees and signage, and some multiple tees and baskets. Some benches. Grass is well maintained on fairways and underbrush wasn't too bad in the woods. Navigation was ok for the most part. Two loops of 9 holes back to parking lot and extra 6 letter holes on first loop. Nicely built greens and bridging over creeks and walking paths. Water fountains, portapotty, and trash cans in parking lot.
Cons: This is not a con in my book, but Idlewild is definitely not a beginner - intermediate level course and only has one set of gold level tees on most holes which is probably with good reason or warning that you probably shouldn't play here if can't get to the first basket within two drives and stay on the fairway which is fairly generous relative to the rest of the fairways.
Beware of crazy human joggers, I was the only disc golfer in the park and there was only a few other people in the whole park, and a few times someone ran down or across the fairway. I was shocked people would run this elevation in the heat. You cross a fairway at one point and backtrack a few places. Plays over and near a walking path/road, nothing too bad.
I played in the peak of summer so there's some poison ivy out there but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be and actually was decent in that regard compared to the other 10 courses I played on this road trip. Just keep an eye open in/near the roughs and trees. The open bomber hole on 15 with tall grass rough is pretty gnarly, but the mowed strip is like 60' wide and I managed to stay out of it even with a blizzard destroyer and headwind. The family that just finished playing when I arrived found several ticks on them, but I didn't find any later. If you can't control a disc well these may be more of an issue.
Just a note that playing and walking over the elevation changes in the summer heat and humidity was rough the first 15 holes to loop back to the parking lot as the 6 extra letter holes are mostly open and elevated. In retrospect I should have probably played the 6 letter holes as a 3rd loop or warm up loop. I ran out of 24oz water after the first 9 holes with 6 to go on the loop. I had to take a decent break to rehydrate before the final 9 holes which is rare for me. It took me almost 2.5-3 hours to play from start to finish which is one of, if not the longest solo round I've ever played and my legs felt like jello.
It does get pretty noisy when planes fly over and are low, but it seems to be pretty sparse timing on the fly byes.
Other Thoughts: Idlewild is Where The Wild Things Are and definitely lived up to the hype. I'm not sure which was my favorite hole as most holes stand out not just among of Cincy area, but of every course I've played. Idlewild throws everything at you including the kitchen sink. You really have to think about where to land and what line to throw to help setup the next throw. Do you risk the plinko approach to the green and ending up OB or layup safe for a longer putt that is still quite makable? You must be able to throw a putter or mid straight and long on many holes to have a look for the next shot. Other holes require a driver out of sheer distance and/or for line shaping. I throw BH and FH equally, so I never felt like the course didn't have a line I couldn't feasibly hit. If you can't throw with opposite spin you may have trouble finding a fairway line on some holes. Some see these as course flaws, but it's really a player flaw of not playing the course like your game permits.
I've played 100+ courses and Idlewild easily ranks in my top 5 with Paw Paw WV, Hawk Hallow, Black Jack, Nockamixon, Moraine, and Orange Crush being of similar style awesomeness. What can I say, but I love me some crazy good epic disc golf! Idlewild made the two flat tires and 1,200 mile round trip drive totally worth it!
34 of 35 people found this review helpful.
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