Pros: The course layout was very challenging, but fair. It required a pretty range of shots.
Wind can be a negative or a positive, but it good to get experience playing in wind.
Course navigation was good, so long as you have a map (use the worlds map)
I really liked the elevation usage, I.e on 2, 5, 12, 16 etc.
OB was in play on a number of holes and certainly added to the challenge on some open (and windy) holes.
The circular tee pads and signage were both good.
On several of the holes there were long PVC poles o getting discs out of trees. Very helpful and necessary.
Cons: It feels like a desert at times, very remote.
Play with a partner. I played alone without losing a disc, but a spotter or second set of eyes will help.
Almost all of the holes required a driver, with the exception of 3 or 4. Maybe some additional shorter technical holes would make it slightly better.
Trees do an excellent OB of catching discs, so take advantage of he poles that are provided on som holes.
A lack of benches and trash cans could be a negative for some.
Other Thoughts: This is a review based on the 2011 worlds layout. I really enjoyed the course, definitely a different experience than I am accustomed to in NC.
I had a good time playing in he wind, but bring appropriate discs.
I preferred this course over Ryan Ranch because it provided a different experience than I've had. For those ball golfers out there, I thinks this is similar to playing an Oceanside links course like kiawah.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
A Surprisingly Enjoyable Walk
The course is in great shape and challenging
Interesting terrain and scenery
A nice mix of interesting and unusual shots
Plenty of room to warm-up/practice
Fairly easy to navigate
Tees are all new concrete circles and the baskets are in great shape
Signs are all new although not completely clear in a couple spots
Wind can be fun (not a true Con)
Footing can be challenging in places with the ice plant, sand, and other fun things
No restrooms/water that I could find
Do take one of the Otter maps located here: http://www.dgcoursereview.com.../2b556208.jpg
Take water and use the restroom before you head out. It's also not a bad idea to tell someone where you're going. It's deserted out there. Or bring a spotter, which is not a bad idea.
I think you can still park on Engineer Lane for free in the lot near #9.
Save yourself some pain and start on #1 to get warmed up.
Pay attention to where #25's basket is. It's towards the road a little to the left of the tee box. As you can't see it from the tee, it's easy to throw to the wrong spot, and do ignore the white plastic pipe sticking up in the air. That's not a basket indicator.
Let me first state that the course(s) are still set-up for the Worlds tournament that occurred last year, so this is really a review of that set-up versus the original Oaks course (i.e. 19 holes on the Oaks and 8 on Cypress). Having said that, I had a surprisingly good time out there. Now I did make the mistake of starting on #11: a 705 foot ass kicker of a not-a-good-warmup-hole with few precious desirable landing spots. Nothing like a 6 right out of the gate. And truthfully, I think the difficult holes are really on the Oaks course, which is why I recommend you start on #1 over on Cypress to give yourself a chance to get warmed up. But even with that error, I really really enjoyed this course. After reading the reviews, I was a bit trepidatious about playing this course, and while I certainly see the complaints (the ice plant, the poison oak, the dense shrubbery), I believe the positives about this course far outweigh the negatives. This course changes its personality every few holes. You start out in a lightly wooded area and then you're out in a lake bed, and then you're in the deep woods, and then you're back out in the open, and then back in the woods. There is constantly interesting terrain around you and it's quite enjoyable to not just play through but walk through. It's also kinda cool/creepy to walk through the abandoned baseball fields in those spots. It's like you're disc golfing in an abandoned city. Anyway, as for the holes themselves, well, you're going to need every shot in your bag and you're going to need to be precise
in the wind. There are few places on this course where you can just rear back and let fly. You always have to be thinking about your path and landing zone on this course. Not just because there's a tremendous amount of OB on this course, but because there's precious few desirable landing spots. And by desirable landing spot I mean: non-OB, decent footing, visibility of the basket, and a desirable attack angle on the basket. And this is in play on every shot. Not just the tee shot. And if that weren't challenging enough, the wind is JeckyllyHydy out there. It's not blowing one minute, gusting the next. I threw back to back tee shots that landed 100 feet apart because I misjudged the wind at that moment. You're also dealing with a lot of elevation changes both uphill and downhill. Combine that with the wind, and once again you're using a lot of brain power before you throw. As far as signature holes, I would say I liked #14 because you not only throw over the lake bed on your first throw but you have to hit a billiard like shot uphill into a pocket of trees on your second shot. #15 is an enjoyable tunnel shot in a visually interesting forest. #17/18 are fun (yet butt puckering) bomber shots. I liked #9s demand of precision, and I enjoyed missing the island green on #4. I also enjoyed the challenge of the long and tree filled #27 which will demand 2 if not 3 precise throws. So with all that said, how did I do out there? What can one expect? Well, I'm probably an Intermediate/Lower Advanced player at this point in my disc journey. I'm typically right around par on the courses I play. For the 27 holes out there that day, I walked out with +9 including ~3 penalty strokes, which I felt was quite fair. Most of the time, the strokes I gave away were my fault versus anything 'unfair' on the course. So I really have no complaints about the course set-up. It seems like the right amount of difficult yet fun to me.
Of the courses I've been to thus far, I think this one may be the one that has the most elements of what makes disc golf fun: elevation changes, trees, terrain changes, long shots, short shots, left shots, right shots, OB, precise landing zones, wind, etc
The only thing really missing there is water. Is it a tough course? Absolutely. Is it beginner friendly? Noooot really. But I really enjoyed my time on this course and look forward to going back. Bravo!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Lots of variety of shots. Alternate tees provide alternate shots not just shorter ones. Great variety of holes. Very challenging with a good mix of lengths. Almost always have the course to yourself. Easy enough to create your own alternate tees to suit your mood and/or conditions on the course.
Cons: The wind is extreme. It blows very hard everyday especially in the afternoon. Can be nearly impossible from the long tees when the wind is at it strongest. Flow could be better with just a few minor adjustments to pin location. Cosmetics are neglected like on most Monterey courses: few actual tee pads, not a lot of places to sit, rugged terrain. (As a local this has never bothered me considering the layout is still world class, and this is how all of our courses seem to be.)
Other Thoughts: This may be my favorite course when played from the white tees. The wind is ever present here so bring some overstable discs. This course will make you a good wind player if played enough.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: + Good use of the elevation
+ Easy to distinguish alternate tee pads with white and blue stones/flags
+ Nice views
+ Seats and trash cans at some holes
+ Practice basket
Cons: - Most holes are long, not too many short ones
- Still needs tee pads on all the holes
Other Thoughts: This is another course where a guide or map would be more than helpful. The wind picks up pretty strong in the bay area in the afternoon but that can help to get some big throws.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Overgrown, and I like it that way!
Pros: The vegetation is the type that I think you will only see near the ocean shore. Be prepared for a challenge. The entire course is long. For me, a huge fan of courses in natural settings, this course is paradise, it is completely overrun with native trees and relatively large shrubs. At CSUMB Oaks you will encounter abundant sand, wild overgrowing trees and bushes of several varieties, even the occasional critter. The Oaks course has carved out trails that allow a golfer the opportunity to see some of the wild countryside that a park course just cant provide. As a disc golfer from the Rockies, at times I felt like I was on the moon because the ground, the vegetation, everything, was so unique, I loved it!
There are many memorable holes on this course with the scenery changing by the hole. Numbers 3, 5, and 10 all make you attempt up-shots. Number six has you maneuver under an amazing tunnel of tight trees. Some holes are open, others downhill bombs, some with large bushes, and almost of them all with the sea wind to contend with. The practice basket is even in a unique spot, in some bushes near the parking lot. Hands down, the best thing about this course is the setting. Although I have favorable opinions about the Cypress course, Ryan Ranch and Don Dahvee, if I was told I could only play one course in the Monterey Bay area it would be this one.
Cons: There are no signs, and therefore you will get lost at times and have to eyeball distances. At times the walks to the next tee can be very confusing. Another player kept having to ask to see our map, he gave up in frustration before we could invite him along with us. Bring a map. 11-12 was very hard to find especially since 11 was in the b position which is even more far from 12's tee box. At the #14 tee area someone wrote on the chairs expressing frustration with the lack of signs and blind shots, I got a good agreeable laugh out of that. The tee boxes are just rugs rolled out over the sand. Some of the abandoned buildings and baseball field make the course feel equally forgotten. On the day I got to play this course the wind never let up to give us a break, scores were very high. Beware, the trees will eat a disc whole at close range and high speeds and mock you with its grasp.
Other Thoughts: Take water and map. For all of its frustration, there are some very memorable shots on this course. If you are like me and you can take a challenging course in stride and LOVE being in a natural setting you will most likely have a great time here. When I reflect on this course, I think of it as a course with five or six signature holes, all of which rank pretty high for me personally, that get overshadowed in my memory by its lack of signs. This might be the best college campus course I've played.
Just in case you need reminded again, take a map.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
play with some locals
Pros: Decently long on many holes with some nice uphill.downhill shots. Both woods and open areas, good variety. Can be windy which makes it interesting. Not very crowded.
Cons: blind tees, so hard to play for the first time and you have a lost disc hazard.
Other Thoughts: I played this course with a couple locals who were nice enough to show me the holes and find about 10 would-be-lost discs for me. One guy was an almost-pro who shot about 4 under and said it was a decent round for him.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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