1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Solid course that may not thrill you but won't disappoint you either. There's a lot of water, and while there may not be any true carries, the canal is present on many holes. It's nice when it border one side of a fairway. It's even better when you have to cross it. Hole 5 is probably the best of the course, with the bridge over the canal. The water isn't so deep that you shouldn't be able to fish a disc out of it but it's a nice bridge that does impart that victorious feeling when you cross it, having successfully driven across it.
It's also a fairly easy play, suitable for quick rounds and players of all ability levels. There isn't much brush so the frustration factor will be low for beginners. The canals, which add difficulty for veterans, should have less affect for the new players, who likely won't throw far enough for them to be in play. Tees, baskets, everything here is pretty much solid.
Cons: It does seem to be very swampy, and there was standing water approaching the fairways in January. I can imagine this place being very unfriendly in wetter months. The water in canals is good; getting soggy feet while walking on the fairway is unpleasant. There weren't many places where this was a danger. But from the lay of the land, I'm pretty sure it is a problem often.
But the main thing that keeps this course from being top-notch isn't what is there. It's what isn't. There aren't any signature holes. There aren't really any challenging holes. (really too open) There is no wow factor. There isn't much that will be remembered after you leave. And there isn't any elevation. It's solid, three-star golf that you will enjoy, but shouldn't go too far out of your way for. And 19 and 20 feel tacked on and not needed, I think the course is better without them.
Other Thoughts: EDIT: I've since had the opportunity to play the course multiple times and to experience league days. The first change I would make is the comment about the marshy nature of the landscape. Playing in May, even after a storm, I've never experienced the course to be as bad as I did in that first winter round. So I would state that I was probably just unlucky that day.
On the other hand, the course navigates pretty badly for non-locals and I'm surprised that I did not mention it initially. I brought some new players to the course to introduce them to the game and was surprised at how many times I was confused, even after having played multiple rounds.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Small seasonal water features only spot you could lose disc
a/b hole locations keep things interesting
Easy to play without a map
Cons: Lack of terrain
Other Thoughts: Overall a nice course in a park that is almost completely dedicated to disc golf. Course in general is well shaded, and weaves through a mature pine forest. Apart from a shelter and a couple tennis courts, it's all discs. You won't be interrupted by others not discing. Located in the city but still easy to get to even from the highway. Definitely worth playing if you are passing through.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Clean tight little course. Plenty of well thought out lines and many alternate routes. Really good flow. Lots of trash and recycling cans around course. Really nice bathroom near hole 1 with water fountain. I met friendly folks to play with every time I went out there. Nice tee pads. 2 pin positions on each hole. Baskets near water.
Cons: Tee signage could be improved. Missing some signs. The nice blue signs don't have the B pin position on them. No signage to next tee.
Other Thoughts: As a newer player this was a really fun course that was open enough to really develop my longer throws. I had a lot of fun here.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: T pads were a good length with plenty of grip. There were trash cans or recycle bins at nearly every hole. course had plenty of shade for hot summer days. The biggest pro I can think of is, its a disc golf course!
Cons: The course seemed very congested compared to what i'm used to playing. This seemed like it should have been a 9 hole course, but they managed to squeeze another 9 holes in there making it 18. The baskets were extremely hard to see and a lot of the signs were broken on the next T pad which made you wonder if you were on the right fairway.
Other Thoughts: I drove 40 miles from NE florida to check out this course because it had pretty good reviews. I dont think I will be returning. If i were making a drive i would play ed austin, ronnie van zant or one of the many great places in ocala.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Challenging course! Swampy after rain. Makes it fun. They have pro and amateur tee off points. And the water hazards sneak up on you.
Cons: im afraid of snakes and the park ranger said water snakes were everywhere.
Other Thoughts: Sometimes you have to search for pins.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Challenging, short course
Pros: There are dual, concrete tee pads on almost all of the holes. Also, the different tee pads provide a uniquely different view of the hole and bring different trees and obstacles into play (i.e., the longs aren't just 50 feet longer in line). The long tee pads seemed to provide a challenge for the pros; as the best score I saw in the tournament (from the long tees, long pin placement) was a 5 under 49. While the course isn't all that long, around 5,000', the designer made good use of the saw palmetto and most of the pins are guarded or hidden (so that shot placement is needed to get birdies). On many of the holes, a local on our card, had to show us where the pin was; because from the tee pad, you just can't see some of them if you don't know where to look.
Cons: There were no water fountains or water faucets to fill a water bottle. Also, one of the tee pads is carpet. Because the course has to make use of available space, there are a few holes where the tee pad is too close to the basket from the previous tee. On a couple of occasions I looked to see a slightly errant tee shot almost hit me. Pay attention when things are busy!
Other Thoughts: Northside Park is a moderately short 18-hole course that requires some control to score. From the short tees, a solid intermediate player should shoot par (54) or slightly under on this course without too much trouble. I am an 875 player and I shot 59 & 55 during a local C-Tier tournament from the short tees. Someone who regularly fairway drives 325-350' (under control, not just powering up across a field) has the opportunity for a birdie on 80% of the holes. I really enjoyed this course and the local disc golf club does a great job keeping the course in shape.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Great layout for an 18 hole course. Many open fairways and baskets. Course actual has some tee markers from old UF golf course.
Cons: No water fountains. Only one faucet to fill up water bottle from. The bathrooms are rough (prision style) no doors on stalls. Your probably better holding it or leaving and coming back. There are a couple of dark water ponds that disc tend to go into and are hard to find.
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
A Florida Classic
Pros: Good tees, baskets, signs, benches, trash cans. Attractive park setting with some canopy for sun protection. Logical course flow that returns to the parking area after 9. Virtually no schule that makes it difficult to lose a disc.
The dual tees provide a fun challenge for all player skill levels. The long tees are right on for blue level players. There is a good variety of shot shapes and distances and several of the holes have multiple options that require some thought.
This is the site of Ken Climo's first pro victory, the home course for the founders of the Fabulous Florida Tour, and the place that the Gurthie brothers grew up playing disc golf. It's about 15 minutes off I-75, so I'd recommend you put it on your "must-play" list when visiting Florida.
Cons: The course can get very swampy following big rains.
Many of the holes crowd each other a bit too much. Pay attention to other players on the course as discs can get into other fairways and come into yours. The design could have been better in this regard as there is additional room around and within the course that could have been better used to provide a better safety buffer between holes.
The bathroom is one of the most disgusting places on earth, worse than county jail. Make sure you make a pit stop for #2 before getting to the course.
Other Thoughts: Don't be a dirty discer. Leave the course cleaner than the way you found it.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Challenge factor: One of the best things about this park are the dual tees which really add nice range in challenge level. The short tees are short enough to be gentle on newer players while at the same time exposing them to tight lines and some true 'rough' areas in the form of low bushes or groupings of trees. The longer tees make for a very challenging par three course (perhaps one par four mixed in) for even very experienced tour players. There are many birdies to get out here but trouble usually isn't too far away and poor drives usually result in a scramble to save par.
Dual fairways: My favorite course feature and Northside has several of these - dual options off the tee which are relatively equivalent balances of skill/risk/benefit. Its rather easy to do out here because of the terrain and the way the trees are loosely grouped on many fairways.
Navigation: Navigation is pretty straightforward (other than problems just associated with the construction) - we had to backtrack once to find a hole but that was because we weren't really paying enough attention, not because of poor signage or flow.
Empty: We played on a warm, sunny weekday in January as we were taking a road trip from Orlando up to Augusta, GA and the course was nearly empty with only one other disc golf group and no non-disc golfers in the park. I'd imagine the course might get a bit busier on the weekends, but if you can play during the week, you'll have blissful solitude!
Cons: Lack of Elevation: Northside has great variety in terms of shots required off the tee - the only thing missing is elevation. The park is quite flat (its Florida!) with only a few bumps, which the designer has taken advantage of.
Construction: This is just a temporary con but when we visited, the course was under a bit of construction making hole one a bit difficult to find and eighteen difficult to play. The construction looks like it has been a bit rough on the course as well, eroding a lot of turf and replacing with mud. Even without the construction, it seems that this course probably has a few problems with mud, especially where small streams criss-cross over fairways.
Other Thoughts: Northside is a solid, challenging course which has a very relaxed feel. The course's best feature is its ability to provide a flexible challenge for both advanced and newer players. I'd also imagine that Northside makes for a spectacular tournament course.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: I reviewed Northside when I was fairly new to the game and realized how much better it is now that I'm a regular DGer.
Northside park is truly a well designed course as far as flow, shot variety, and errant shot protection. Big groups frequent most days of the year but you do not often have to worry about long waits and most players are accustomed to letting you play through.
What I thought to be a more straightforward course at first became a playground for shot shapes. You can get by without tons of shot variety, but the best players out here diversify.
Northside's local league, the Chain Hawks, is a huge player out at this course. They provide weekly events, tournaments, and good, friendly people, who put in the effort to keep this place nice for all. Anyone who loves DG and lives in Gainesville or the surrounding area should jump on in any Wednesday, Friday, or Sunday.
-Trash/Recycle cans everywhere
-Two Pads for each hole
Cons: -The bathroom. What a mess. Should be replaced with a new, and much nicer one soon.
-The occasional civies on the course. You might see a herd of wild children running about or the rare bag lady might try to empty your pockets.
-murky ponds that can take discs for good.
-busy days seem to bring a Frat party ever once in a while. It can be exhausting playing behind a group of 12 with one disc each.
Other Thoughts: This will be and has been the site for many great tournaments.
NP is my home course. I love it and live it. After getting somewhat obsessed with this game and traveling all over the state, I still get a special feeling at Northside. With not many courses in the area, Gainesville is super lucky to have Northside Park.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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