Pros: Lake Shawnee sits on one corner of a nice park that surrounds that end of the lake. There is a full 18 hole course, all with numbered concrete tees and dual pin positions. No tee signs, but the basket is usually in sight from the pad.
It is almost all grass, with a few nice old trees here and there, and a patches of thicker rough on the holes that are nearer to the water. There are rolling hills, not huge, but far from flat. Elevation changes on several holes that make it a bit more interesting. Water is in play on 4 or 5 holes, mainly at the end.
I liked the first and last holes the best. Number 1 tees across a trickling stream, downhill and up the opposite side. A line of trees offers some ok gaps with low clearance, or there is a 2 o'clock window if you want to try a right to left spike hyzer. Not deep enough water do lose a disc, but some undergrowth could hide one here. I went right side, but it is a hard bend playing the short pin position, and wound up 3 putting for bogey. 18 is over water, the right to left hyzer is required to make it back to the shore, where a few trees that stand around the pin position I played to on the right. The other is further to the left on the land. I didn't put enough air under it, and it splashed about a foot short of the bank. Luckily it was easily retrieved from the aquatic plants growing there, and I was still able to make a bogey after the penalty.
I found the back nine to be more interesting than the front, holes 12-18 in particular. All of the elements become more prominent and blend together more often. 12 is not long to the short pin, but steeply up hill and with large trees taking the direct line and right side away. Challenging for the RHBH style I am most comfortable with. Hole 13 is a short one, but has the steepest drop, and is no room to overshoot it because the lake is about 15 feet behind the pin I played. Laid up close enough to insure an easy birdie. 14 is kind of close to the water in the pin location I played, but there is room to the left for a safe line if you are not wanting to risk getting wet. 15 takes a left to right line to get around the trees that protect the basket in that position when I played, bending toward the water, but not perilously close to it. Managed a birdie there too.
Cons: There are a few holes that are fairly average quality, maybe a bit boring, but can become difficult if you are unaccustomed to playing in high wind, like I am. I was spraying drives everywhere, and my short game was atrocious.
This is par 54 any way you play it, and should be an easier course to experienced players with any kind of accuracy and a decent arm. I finished my first round at 7 over, with two inexcusable double bogeys, even with the high gusts of wind. So I am looking forward to redemption when the conditions are more favorable.
Other Thoughts: It was a fun round at Lake Shawnee. I didn't light it up, but it was my third course of the day, so at least it was nice for the simplistic layout that does not require too much exertion.
I struggled a lot with the wind, but did take three birdies, although one came after a bad drive on hole 7 and a perfect 75 foot Roc shot that got the air bounce straight into the chains. Best shot of the day on any of the three courses.
If you want an easier course, that plays pretty quick, this is a nice option. Not ridiculous easy, with several fun holes, I would say it is worth a trip if you're not too far away.
Boring Front, Interesting Back
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: It's pretty easy to find the next tee. There are arrows by the basket posts that point the way. It's a bit confusing to tell which hole is 8 and which is 10 (see below). 18 is the only other tricky spot since there are a couple alternate tees. Course navigation 9/10
Baskets and tees are both in solid but not perfect condition. A couple of baskets are slightly tilted but not bad. Holes 8 and 10 share an L-shaped tee pad, which is kind of weird. An alternate tee on 18 is in pretty bad shape. 8/10
Hole 1 and several holes on the back force you to choose a route through the trees where several are possible. Some holes on the front only have a couple of trees right around the basket and you have to decide how to get around them. Decisionmaking 8/10
It's pretty easy to find discs most of the time. The lake is very in play on holes 13, 14, and 18. 13 the lake is behind the basket on a downhill shot, 14 is along the right side, and 18 requires about a 200-250ft carry (the shore is closer the further left you go) from an elevated tee. 8/10
There's a decent amount of elevation that's mixed pretty well. There are a couple more downhill holes than uphill, or at least the downhill holes are typically more severe (12 is more severely up). There are also a couple of interesting sidehill shots. However, many of the holes on the front nine are mostly flat. 7/10
Obstacles are used very well on the back nine to provide a challenge, but something to be desired on most of the front. 7/10
Navigation on holes is decent, as it's pretty obvious on most holes. However, the only information you have at the tee is the hole number on a post, no distances or maps. A few holes have blind shots where you have may have to walk ahead to find the basket. 6/10
The course is usually pretty well mowed, and there are a couple benches along the course. No tee signs or trash cans. The brush along, 1, 13, 14, 16, and 17 sometimes gets a little out of control. 6/10 on maintenance
Beginners will find plenty of challenge on this course. Intermediate players will be pretty bored on the front nine but find the back a lot more challenging. Advanced players will have enough challenge to keep them interested on the back. 6/10 on challenging all levels
Cons: Most holes have two pin positions, but on many of the holes the alternates aren't much different from each other and don't change the feel of the holes at all. There's one alternate tee on 18. 3/10
There's not much variety in distances. Most holes are 275-325 feet, especially on the front. There are a few shorter more technical holes on the back. Not many long bomb holes, 8 and 11 are about as close as it gets. 3/10
Much of holes 2-11 are pretty open, with a few trees to avoid. There is some decent variety on the back. 1, 12, 14, and 16 are fairly technical. Variety of openness 5/10
This course doesn't have many holes that force you to throw a certain shot path. There are some exceptions, holes 1 and 18 require right to left, while 9, 10, 12, and 17 require left to right. 5/10
Other Thoughts: Overall Challenge: 4/10
This course is a decent play if you are in the area, though if you're in Topeka I definitely prefer Crestview Park. Neither of these courses are particularly challenging, and if that's what you're looking for you should head up to Longview at Perry Lake.
This course is pretty solidly at a 3 for me, with a 2.902 on my spreadsheet. Holes 2-11 are a 2.5 quality, while the rest are more of a 3.5 quality, averaging out to a 3.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Solid but overrated
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Nice back 9 with a little more variety than the front 9. Great hole 18!
Cons: Kind of a boring front 9, not a lot of trees involved.
Other Thoughts: Overrated compared to other great courses in KS. Awesome last hole though.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Lake Shawnee - North Course
Pros: I was in the area for the day and had the afternoon off so I decided to check out the most highly rated course in town (per DGCR). Whether or not it is the best course is neither here, nor there. It is the only one I have played in Topeka though.
- Being that I am of novice/intermediate skill level, this course was a pretty good fit. I can only drive about 225 right now so making par was a fair challenge for my skill level.
- The back 9 in general was designed well for my style of play.
-Plenty of parking and I know there are bathrooms within a short drive.
- The baskets have big number signs on top of them making locating the baskets, for the most part, relatively easy. Of course, I could not locate 17 but determined it was buried in the woods through a process of elimination.
- Some of the nicer tee boxes I have played on. Long enough and make of concrete that has minimal cracks or issues.
- Plenty of benches if you need to sit to rest or if you are waiting on the group in front of you.
Cons: - The 18th...where do I start. I didn't even attempt to tee off from the box for fear of losing a disc in the water. Instead, I teed of from about 30 feet from the shoreline. I can see how higher skill level people would enjoy this hole.
- Holes 3 through 9 are somewhat repetitive as they zig-zag across a field with little elevation change.
-Some holes have markers that state their numbers, others do not.
- There are not multiple basket locations, as stated on here. And there are not multiple tee boxes for each hole either. I don't have a problem with this though.
Other Thoughts: DGCR states that there is a south course on the other side of the park road but I looked and did not see any baskets. I did not look hard but I could have missed them. I would not say that this is a must play but, in the case that it is the superior course in Topeka, it was worth the stop. I know people said this is close to a disc golf shop (LSDiscs). I would have stopped but my phone gave me the location as being a persons home so I skipped for today. Overall, I would recommend this course but would like to play the others in the area before going back.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 2 Not
my favorite topeka course
Pros: beautiful lake scenery, water comes into play 3-4 times , plays pretty quick for a 18 hole course. i love holes 14, 15 and 18. there is a practice basket wich is nice helps give you something to do on busy days. the make good use of the elevation there.
Cons: wish it was longer , first couple baskets a lil narrow
Other Thoughts: lsdiscs is 2 blocks away
0 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Hilly by the lake!
Pros: This course sits on the SE side of the biggest lake in Topeka. The holes are easy to navigate for the most part and have great use of trees, elevation changes, and water. The holes are also a good mix of lengths ranging from 216'-415'. The area is very well trimmed and maintained at all times. There are plenty of trash cans and benches throughout the course as well. There is also a water fountain ny #11 tee as well as a walking/biking trail. In addition to this the baskets are in great shape and the tee pads are huge. Lastly, there is so much to do around the lake. There are grills, picnic tables, playgrounds, bathrooms, and even the lakes swiimming beach can be seen from the course.This course is a must stop in Topeka as it is just one of two 18-hole courses here!
Cons: The area is generally pretty breezy to the winds coming off of the lake. Water comes into play on the back nine which is great, but if you aren't careful you could be leaving with 2-3 discs less then you started with. Navigation can be tricky on a couple of occasions (after #5 go up the big hill & after #11 go down the hill). Very minor cons here, the pros clearly out weigh them.
Other Thoughts: #1- Through two trees (at the tee) and around a row of other trees that the pin lies behind.
#s 6,11,13,15- All great downhill bombing opportunities.
#18- Signiature Hole. This beauty sits atop a high hill as many others do. The hole extends to a cove in which your disc must clear to reach the pin on the other side. This hole is also downhill and requires a hefty throw to make it over the water.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Worth a trip
Pros: easy to tell where you're going, Pin placement is good. LS Discs is pretty close if you lose something in the lake. aceable and birdieable holes.
Water holes give this place the challenge it needs
Cons: No signs to help you find it if you aren't around, also no signage by the tees to show distance or anything. except for the holes around the lake no real challenges. Dries out slowly
Other Thoughts: Great atmosphere, great place to practice, you can even take a swim at the end to cool off on a hot Kansas Day
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Very nice course!!!
Pros: Very nice course for an intermediate player (not a lot of ways to lose a disc, unless you throw it in the water)! Beautiful course beside the lake!
Cons: I am an intermediate player and if you played this course a lot it may lack a little challenge. Although this is the best course I've played and will be back many more times to play it!
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Good road trip stop
Pros: Very well manicured in a park setting that does not share space with other activities-no picknickers on the fairway here. Concrete tees are in good shape as are most of the baskets, but I'll get into that a bit later. Trees are mostly mature and provide a decent amount of challenge. This course does, for the most part, favor the RHBH player, with the exception of holes 17,14, 8, and 3. Good variety of lengths keep you guessing on which disc to throw which always provides a fun challenge. Course flow well for the most part and makes good use of the hills around the lake.
Cons: The water is not always utilized to the extent it could be. Often the tee for the next hole is too close to the basket of the previous which can be a problem if the course is backed up. Trees don't provide much of a challenge for the post part and it seems the baskets are almost never in the most interesting of their pin locations. Tee signs would be a really nice addition. This can be seen as a pro to those who call this their home course- the baskets are all mixed and matched- Some are 20 year old DGAs, some brand new Mach 3's and everything in-between. You must adjust to the basket.
Other Thoughts: There is a severe lack of great land for courses in Kansas, and although this isn't a bad course, it isn't really a good one either. It's not a course to go well out of your way to play, but if you happen to be in the area, it's worth an hour of your time.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has been nicely groomed every time I have been out here, and is very easy to navigate without a map. There are nice benches on the course and a couple of trash cans. Multiple pin placements that seem to be moved often. The teepads are large and in great shape. There isn't much elevation on this course, but enough to have some fun with and what they had to work with was used very nicely. I especially like how some of the baskets on the back 9 were in risky areas and the shot on 18 over the cove although it would definitely be overwhelming for beginners or rec players.
Cons: No restrooms on or near the course. There were no signs with any hole info other than hole #s on a stone next to the tee pad. Most of the front 9 can be pretty boring, especially on a calm day since there isn't much to navigate around and the wind would be your only hope for much of a challenge. A couple of the baskets could use some minor work, but nothing that would cause any trouble.
Other Thoughts: Maybe something as simple as some designated fairways with some marked OB would make the front 9 more entertaining.
Of the 3 courses I am familiar with in Topeka, this is always my first choice while passing through town.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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