Finally – a neighborhood built just for disc golf!
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Unique setting for disc golf; plays all over what used to be residential property that was torn down and allowed to grow over. Former neighborhood feels like a community park, sans any other activities.
• Disc Play: Requires a variety of lines, decent distance and good placement. Plays semi-open with a healthy number of trees and bushes that are remarkably well-placed relative to tees and pins to take certain lines away. Features some well-guarded pins, so your 1st or 2nd (and often 3rd) shots must be well placed to get a good look at the basket. Decent mix of fairway shapes (some pretty interesting). No major elevation, but the terrain changes constantly and comes into play a variety of ways … this course most definitely ain't flat. With ever-present OB roads on one side and thick growth (that used to demark property lines), staying in the well-defined fairways is paramount. Factor in the hole lengths and it makes for a very challenging round, with legit par 4's & 5's. Eight holes over 500 ft, so there's plenty of chances to use your longest discs, but with several under 300, there are still some birdie opportunities (even for noodle arms). Any way you slice it, you ain't carding a 54 here.
• Equipment: Baskets are fine. The rest is pretty bare bones; natural tees (meh), simple tee posts with hole # (alt pin distances hand-scrawled on posts) and a few next tee signs to help you out. Looked like there were multiple pin placements - a nice plus for locals.
• Aesthetics: reasonably nice, quiet, very green …makes for a pretty serene round (if you don't mind the highway noise or planes overhead).
• Isolation from other activities - No one else really doing anything on the course itself, however, there were a few joggers, dog walkers and an occasional car passing by on the OB roads adjacent to every hole. Be aware what's going on as there's a chance any tee shot could end up in the street.
• Memorable holes: I particularly liked the way # 7 rises up to a higher plateau a few times as you get further down the fairway. #5 just seemed to go on and on… 6 shots worth that.
• Nav/flow: ooof! Even with the map, it's hard to follow, but without one, it's probably hopeless. What isn't obvious on the map (or when you first arrive) is that often, the best route to the next hole cuts through the vegetation that used to separate one back yard from another. After a while, you start noticing the paths, but no matter how you slice it, there are a few long walks and some truly goofy routing. Particularly frustrating to take a long walk to the wrong hole. Probably not that bad once you get the hang of it, but for the uninitiated, it sucks. If you're reading this, you're probably deciding whether or not to play here, so leave yourself a little extra time to get around.
• Natural tees: not all that bad, but some are pretty worn, with exposed roots that create a bad tripping hazard. I realize no one's gonna pay for it, but concrete would be a big step up.
• A few pins are positioned where they're guarded such that it basically forces a layup, thereby nullifying the benefit of a great tee shot and diminishing scoring separation.
• Not much shade - could be bad on really sunny days …sunscreen.
• Unvarying as far as fairway type - gets repetitive.
• Amenities: nope
Other Thoughts: Does the "long, open, work around some really well-placed obstacles" extremely well, but that's pretty much the only trick this dog has. In tandem with some good elevation and clever pin placements, I really think they've made the most of what this plot of land can yield. I found it to be a fun course, and could see playing here quite a bit if I lived locally. Nonetheless, it simply lacks the diversity a course needs to rate excellence in my book, and the bad routing doesn't help it score any points on that front. Still, any time you can combine this kind of challenge and with this much fun, you've done very well.
Much like a loveable mutt, Carrollton may not have a pedigree, and certainly lacks the polish some other courses have, but its got a lot of heart.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Prepare to meet the challenge of the new frontier
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Carrollton Park is set in an old neighborhood that was torn down when Lambert Airport was expanded in the late 90's. All of the houses are gone but the streets and much of the landscaping from the old neighborhood remain. Basically imagine all the houses vanishing from your neighborhood and there you go.
The site is relatively flat but there a bit of a pitch to it and some places where there was enough up and down that the homeowners had retaining walls built. There is a lot of vegetation, although the effect is more like a park-style course with a lot of trees as opposed to a heavily wooded course. What was the back of the property lines has a lot of built-up shule, so you generally have an O.B. road on one side of the hole and some nasty shule on the other. The design uses the abundance of OB and trees to create a course where shot placement can really save you some strokes. The holes are generally on the longer side, so the OB can easily come into play if your drive gets offline. The golf shots are pretty solid with multiple tees and pin placements to increase the variety. There are a few creative pin placements that take advantage of the elevation changes they have to work with. The shots can be pretty varied; it's hard to get away with just throwing hyzers here all day (I should know, all I can throw is hyzers and this course eats me up and spits me out.)
I'm a silly country boy, so I'll give this place cool points for the low-flying planes overhead. Some of the leftover decorative yard plantings are cool; you don't see bamboo growing on a course in Missouri every day.
Cons: The main con to Carrollton is that a drunken monkey could come up with better flow. It is very easy to get turned around and much of the place visually looks similar so it is easy to get lost anyway, and the meandering flow just makes it worse. Part of the issue is that it is designed to get you back by your car between holes #9-#10, but the cost is a winding roundabout stagger across the park. You walk past the basket for #7 to get to #6. Then you have a long walk to get to #8. The logical hole to walk to after #8 is #11. The second most logical tee to get to from #8 is #18. #9 is way the Hell back up the street on the other side. A lot of the course is like that; the spots where you can get lost are too numerous to list. You can waste a lot of time trying to figure out where you are. There are some directional signs, so that helps. A more logical flow would help more.
The tee signs are just posts with no maps. Some have distances written on them, others have the hole number and that's it. Given that there are multiple pin placements and many of them are blind from the tee, the lack of information on the tee signs is frustrating. There is one hole (I think it is #10) where I always forget where I am and think the basket is farther down than it is; there is a drop off that hides the street behind the pin that I ALWAYS throw into. A better tee sign might help me remember what I'm doing.
Not really cons for me but worth noting: The tees are natural, although most of the holes had a flagged alternate tee to use in case the regular tee was muddy. There are openings in the streets for the sewer, but most had sandbags stuck in there to keep your disc from rolling in. It seems like a golf-only site but the streets are not closed so you might encounter some traffic while you play. The park is kept up fairly well, but with the decaying neighborhood infrastructure it is hard to consider it a "pretty" park. There are an insane amount of power lines in play. There is no parking lot, you just park along the street and depending where on the street you are your car might be in the line of fire.
Other Thoughts: My sister taught at Carrollton Elementary on the other side of the freeway, which served this neighborhood and also was torn down when the airport expanded. Since I met many of the people who lived here and know how long and hard they fought to save their homes, playing disc golf across their abandoned neighborhood is fairly depressing for me.
In the end this is a replacement/improvement for the doomed Creve Coeur course. It's a pretty flat/pretty long course, which is unique in the St. Louis area other than Creve Coeur. However, it's not board-flat or nearly as wide open as Creve Coeur, so it makes for better golf.
I was on the fence about my rating, it's probably a 3.5 if all that matters to you is the shots but more like a 3 if you care a lot about amenities. I care more about the shots so I'm going to go with the higher rating. Shot for shot it's a very solid course. It lacks the elevation to really be great, but it is still a very good course that is worth checking out. Just make sure you bring a map.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 3 Sets of Pads & Baskets - Very challenging - Good mix of Holes & Shots - New Baskets - Trashcans - Well Maintained - Not Crowded
Carrolton Park was built on what used to be an old neighborhood by the airport. The course layout has 3 different tee pads (red, white and blue) as well as 3 pin placements for each hole. The red tee pads are marked by the tee post, while the white and blues are marked either by flags or stakes. The course does not get a lot of play, so you can usually move at your own pace out there, which I like. Even the short tees will challenge Advanced players and make them use a lot of different shots in your bag. Streets and sidewalks still wind through the course to create OB on nearly every hole. The city of Bridgeton does a great job keeping this course mowed and clearing limbs that are dragged over to the streets.
Cons: Poor Flow - No Tee Signs - Natural Tee Pads - No Restrooms or Drinking Fountains
There are quite a few places where you can get lost (especially between holes 1 & 2) if you do not have a map or local guide. There are other design flaws that make you walk back and forth as well such as holes 13-18. With all the space out there, it really could have been done better. Flow issues aside, this is a tough course that is worth playing. There are natural tee pads, for now. But, with 3 different sets, none of them are really worn that badly. Though they do not have public restrooms or running water, there is a Johnny located off Hole 1
Other Thoughts: This is a great challenging course that is a lot of fun (if you can stay in bounds) This could easily be a championship course if it had concrete tee pads and restrooms/running water. You can tell it is still a work in progress and it will be really great once it is completed. Until then, it is still a lot of fun and a great challenge. The icing on the cake is that it is right next to the airport and you see an airplane taking off or landing every other hole, which is awesome.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
good start to a championship level course
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course offered a fair mix of holes, there were righty, lefty, uphill, downhill, short, and long. There are also 3 sets of tees and 3 basket placements that provide numerous ways to mix up the course. A buddy and I were lucky enough to hop in with a group of 2 locals who said that the baskets have been moved every few weeks.
What I enjoyed the most about the course is how it made you focus on shot selection and then the execution of that shot. There were many cases where I thought my tee shot was good only to find that I was 20-30 feet away from having the desired look on my second shot. Getting that extra little bit of distance off of the tee doesn't necessarily mean that you will score better than the guys on your card.
The course is located in an old subdivision, and the course uses the roads running through it as a great use of OB. It comes into play on many holes, but there are a few in particular where the OB can be especially tight. This adds an obvious layer of difficulty to the course.
I was surprised to see a good amount of garbage cans out on the course and next to no garbage loose.
Cons: I followed the advice in many other reviews and had the course map pulled up on my phone. My buddy and I were lucky enough to have 2 regular players approaching the first tee at the same time so we played with them. I'm glad we did, because even with a map I think I would have been confused following the lay out. I'm not 100% sure I'd know exactly where I was going if I had to play the course right now without a map. So try to play with somebody who has already played the course if possible, or be prepared to struggle with navigation a bit. I'm definitely willing to walk a bit in between holes epecially if it means the quality of the holes will be top notch, but this course does not flow as well as others for people who have not seen it before.
Other Thoughts: Overall I was impressed with the course. I'd heard a lot of hype surrounding it and was not let down. Carrollton definitely IS NOT your standard par 54 pitch and putt. If you want to score well you must have your accuracy and mental game under control, otherwise it will eat you alive. For this reason a lot of people may not care for the course, but it is definitely a challenge. To me this is what a golf course should be. Whoever can play smart golf and hit their lines will do well.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: I am unofficially naming this course "Suburbia".
The course is built right on top of what used to be an actual subdivision/neighborhood of over 50 houses. The streets and sewers are all still in place, the plots of land where each individual house stood are still graded and look ready for construction and you can literally picture your discs flying over driveways with bicycles and minivans parked in them (there are actually no driveways - that's just a good imagination). There is no other course I've seen quite like it. I loved the feeling, like asking mom if I could go play in the neighbors yard :)
The course has a very good mix of shot style, direction and distance. Just about every disc can find a workout and it was nice to have plenty of opportunities to play with some of the discs in my bag that get neglected.
It is very nice to see three alternate pin placements on every hole and I agreed with most of the choices.
From the looks of things, there will be between two and three tee pads for each hole... of which I also felt the location choices were nice.
The holes all felt to have a nice balance between challenging and playable - nothing that felt like a cakewalk, nothing that felt unjustifiably difficult or impossible (there is one exception, but I think cutting down one or two crummy little trees will fix the issue - more in Cons).
The staged/stepped grading of the land between plots make for a very interesting and fun twist to the normal rolling hills on traditional park courses. It could work for you or work against you and it was all about planning where to park your disc to avoid driving it right into a rise or having it float over an edge and down an extra 75ft. A welcome, if not punishing challenge.
Cons: The cons at this course are a mixed bag of "it's still not finished and will improve" and "this is what you have to deal with to build a course on such a unique piece of land"
The biggest complaint here is going to be navigation. TAKE A MAP! There are many, many places where the next logical teepad you see is actually not the one you want. You'll frequently find yourself walking across the street and down almost two blocks to get to the next hole. You'll often discover that you have just walked right into the middle of another holes fairway while on your way to the next tee. The problem is due to having to fit the layout in between the existing roads from the old neighborhood and still come up with some way to have hole 1 and 18 remotely near one another. Maybe there is another way, but I won't even begin to speculate because it must have been a nightmare to design.
There are currently no trash cans. I'm sure there will be eventually, but for now, you need to preplan on packing out everything you bring. Don't be like the jack-wagons playing in front of me that I became personal janitor for by cleaning up an entire case worth of beer cans, despite having asked them to stop throwing their trash on the brand new course.
The Gateway Titan basket on Hole 4 is a defect. Gateway forgot to weld on the ring below the bucket that keeps discs from slipping through and onto the ground. It's the dumbest mistake and I have no idea how it made it through quality control. Hopefully it will be replaced or repaired for free.
There is no parking lot. You will always be parking your car along the street. This means that you will want to have that map of the course in your hands as you decide where to park. As the course becomes more popular, you will need to decide to start somewhere other than hole 1 as no parking will be available by hole 18.
In many cases there will be safety issues that require players to be doing their due diligence and paying attention. Most of the fairways are narrow, by contrast to regular parks, and are bordered on both sides by roads - roads where people park their cars and even a slight ricochet off a tree or a shot that got a little flippy could be on a direct path for someones car or worse, their head. There is also a spot along fairway 11 where a really fast throw which heads to the right could end up on the highway. I don't even want to think about that. Please be careful.
Other Thoughts: Not much else to add, but please download the map, you'll never make it through without it. Also, make sure to locate the correct basket before you tee off - the map only shows the "A" positions and will have you throwing in the complete wrong place before you realize it.
Also, don't be the bung-heads who ruin this courses relationship with the city of Bridgeton - pick up your trash and keep your language clean and at a reasonable level (there are apartments all along the edge of the course where children were playing and windows were open). If you see somebody working hard to blow it for the rest of us, say something.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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