Highest rated course in Charlotte? How?
4 Helpful / 11 Not
Pros: There are some cool pin placements and greens that really challenge you and force you to re-evaluate a lay up vs. running for it Hole #2 long basket comes to mind! The basket sits on the edge of a ravine. If you miss, you miss big
The course has a broad variety of shots. Long bombs, tough narrow shots, everything
Cons: Signage signage signage....
For being the highest rated public course in the Charlotte area I was beyond disappointed. I had read and heard so many good things about how awesome Renn. is, so I couldn't wait to try it. And after playing many of the other highly rated Charlotte courses I had high expectations.
My round started out by a confusing walk around the tennis courts looking for the tee pad. Knowing that there are the Grey and Gold options for the course, I was looking for two tee pads. Maybe there are, maybe there aren't? I could only find one.
The tee signs didn't help guide me along very much, and after the first 3 holes I was starting to get frustrated.
By the time I made it into the wooded "ravine" area I was beyond lost, and walking around just looking for the correct tee pad and basket. There were NO signs directing me were to go, and with so many holes crammed into one area, fairways criss-crossing each other, and the two layouts It was hard to even find the correct fairway.
Other Thoughts: I'm disappointed that this course is the highest rated course here in Charlotte, and I feel that I must've missed the allure of the course. I'm sure I will play it again, and hopefully be able to update my review, but given the lack of direction, signage, tee pads, clear fairways, etc. I can't ever see this course being rated higher than 3 stars in its current condition.
I'm sure this review will get me plenty of "un-helpful" votes, but I stand by my review. The course is almost impossible to find your way through, not a trait of a 4+ rated course...
Good luck deciphering your way through the first 9 holes...
4 of 15 people found this review helpful.
Decent, but not blown away
5 Helpful / 13 Not
Pros: - Finding the next basket was pretty easy. Course seemed to flow well.
- Baskets and tee pads were well maintained. No graffiti or those stupid "disc chargers" written on the benches.
Cons: - Signage is terrible after the first few holes. The first few holes all have nice layout maps at the tee pad, but a majority seemed to be missing. Had to walk down to find the basket before throwing a few times.
- Some tee pads were numbered incorrectly (the ninth tee is labeled 8), but luckily we were able to ask some locals for help when we needed it.
- Several fairways are in desperate need of mowing. Spent a pretty good amount of time looking for discs that landed in the fairway because the grass is so tall in some places.
Other Thoughts: - Plays long. Not really a pro or con, but I felt like there wasn't much mix of distance. In my opinion, great courses mix short, med, and longish par 3s, but I felt like I was throwing a driver/fairway driver on most tees (and we played the "short" tees.)
- Took us about 3 hours to finish with a group of 4
- For this to be such a highly rated courses I wasn't very impressed. I'll definitely be checking out some of the other courses in the area.
5 of 18 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 6 Not
Accept the challenge!
Pros: The grey course is an exciting way for a beginner or an advanced player to challenge themselves. The holes give you several different looks and makes it easy to find a route that works for you. Great use of elevation and concrete tee pads are always a plus.
Cons: I was able to figure out the course but it does take some navigating. While it is clearly marked where the next hole, the basket location can be confusing. Some holes have two baskets, some one, some show two on the sign but only have one on the hole. I was able to figure it out but it did make the first trip a little confusing.
Other Thoughts: I am a beginner. I've only been playing three months with a max drive of 280. While my score was much higher on this course than the rest I have played, It was a lot of fun. When I play this course I plan to take an extra 5 shots over my average. I have heard all the stories of how tough this course is but did not find it impossible for a beginner. I encourage everyone to take the challenge and enjoy the difficulty.
4 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Wait what hole was that?
7 Helpful / 21 Not
Pros: Some very fun holes. Great use of elevation. Well maintained.
EDIT: There's a lot going on here and it's probably not fair to judge after just one round... but I will...
Cons: The only con, and it's a big one, is the lack of signage. Really, it's an embarrassment to the club to have such a nice course that's so frustrating for anyone who isn't in the know. Yes, there was a poorly-photocopied map you could grab but it was illedgible.
Other Thoughts: I know lots of people won't agree with this rating but I stand by it. If you can't walk in off the street and get around the course that's a major drawback.
We went to RL Smith right after Renny and it was a much more fun experience.
EDIT: I will go up to 3.5. Perhaps I expected too much after all the buildup. But if this is going to be the showplace of Charlotte disc golf, as it should be, basic navigation is not too much to ask.
I know my opinion of Renaissance will improve after I go back. But if you've only got time for one round and you're not with a local, I'd go to RL Smith, Nevin, or Hornet's Nest first.
7 of 28 people found this review helpful.
Renny and the Jets
9 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Renny's got two different layouts with concrete tees and baskets and benches. She's got them crazy greens that will make you decide to either layup safe or go for it and risk it all. She's got some of the best elevation in the area and pits of danger. Her variety is phenomenal with some fun downhill, uphill, across the slope holes. She got curves and doglegs, and multi-path fairways. The few flat holes on the gold layout are tough straight-ish par 5s and 4s. She's got some nicely built erosion control features and steps and bridges to traverse the course. Nice locals that helped me with navigation in parts. Port-a-potty by tennis courts/parking lot.
Cons: Navigation was a bit convoluted between the two layouts in the middle with overlapping of different numbers on the same hole. Lacking in the signage department, bring a map if it's your first time. Plays over/near parking lot/road. There was a yellow jacket nest on the little path to the green to basket 18. Muddy the day after rain. Tough and rugged course for the un-seasoned player and your normal everyday play.
Other Thoughts: Hey kids, shake it loose together
The spotlight's hitting something
That's been known to change the game
We'll kill the fatted calf tonight
So stick around
You're gonna hear electric music
Solid walls of sound
Say, Candy and Ronnie, have you seen them yet
But they're so spaced out, Renny and the Jets
Oh but they're weird and they're wonderful
Oh Renny she's really keen
She's got electric boots a mohair suit
You know I read it in a maga-zine
R-R-R-Renny and the Jets
Hey kids, plug into the faithless
Maybe they're blinded
But Renny makes them ageless
We shall survive, let us take ourselves along
Where we fight our parents out in the streets
To find who's right and who's wrong
R-R-R-Renny and the Jetsss!
9 of 18 people found this review helpful.
One of the Jewels of NC
9 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: -The layout here is spectacular, particularly in terms of the pin placements. The pins are placed on well protected greens that and require navigating slopes, elevated baskets, and delicate approaches.
-The use of elevation adds a big wow factor to a number of holes while increasing the degree of difficulty.
-The big gorge is another signature element and is used at both the beginning (hole 2) and end (hole 18) of the course.
-Concrete tees are always nice to have on every hole.
-Really nice mix of shots, especially for NC where the courses tend to be pretty heavily wooded. This has tight tunnel shots, big open bombs, and makes you work the disc both left to right and right to left.
Cons: The only con for me would be the issues with navigation. I don't understand the way the course is laid out at the moment, and it isn't just me. I had a local club member as a guide and we still managed to miss a hole. As we approached one of the tees another group arrived at the tee from a different direction but claimed to be playing the same layout that we were (they had actually taken the holes completely out of order). Every other course I've ever played with a short and long layout just has a long tee and a short tee playing to the same basket which seems by far the easiest way to do things. If the club insists on the spiderweb of tees that is the current system i think much better navigational aids need to be in place.
Other Thoughts: Renny is a course i've been hearing about for some time and i'm happy to report that it didn't disappoint in the least. The layout issues hardly take away from the rating as the holes taken individually are some of the best i've ever played. Every shot you have will be tested and those that put some thought into how they are going to get around the course will be rewarded. If you ever have a chance to make it out, this is one that shouldn't be missed.
9 of 11 people found this review helpful.
for the Renaissance man
15 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: I haven't played many gold-level courses that are this much fun. Renny is an absolute beast.
Elevation changes are frequent and dramatic. I can only remember about three flat holes, and those were the all-out distance bombers (11-13). Risk-reward is incorporated beautifully, with many baskets on or right next to slopes. None is more dramatic than on #2, where the basket is raised on a pedestal with a steep ravine a few feet away. There is a fence to keep you safe, but if you air ball your putt, your disc may not be so lucky.
This course had more doglegs than any I can remember, and they are designed well. The landing zones were generally pretty fair, and you had to think a shot or two ahead (or not; sometimes I did this and then nailed the first tree).
There are some scenic rock outcroppings. On #9 my drive landed 15 feet away from the basket and 15 feet below. Wooded and open holes are nicely interspersed.
I like courses that finish big, and you can't finish much bigger than #18 here, an 800+ foot gut check. After a full drive, I had to decide if I could safely get my approach across the steep ravine that bisected the fairway and also avoid the one that runs along the right side (I laid up). Then there is a memorable approach to the basket on the precarious green above the ravine. Really fun hole.
Cons: Hole 1 was a little underwhelming, and the tee shot seemed a little odd with a branch blocking your drive. (I'm pretty sure I was using the right tee pad - a big concrete slab near the tennis court - but there was little signage).
In general the tee signs are missing. Distances are listed on the tee pads, but with multiple configurations it can be confusing. I got through okay with the help of the "next tee" arrows (which were plentiful) and the map on this site. Without the map, good luck. You absolutely need to understand the direction of the doglegs, and these fairways are too long to walk before you throw.
I played the gold course. Be careful that you're playing to the right holes, as some holes also have a basket for the black configuration (and they're not black baskets), and often times there are multiple baskets visible from wherever you are.
Other Thoughts: My score was higher than any course I've played in the last two years, but I didn't care. This course was epic. If Homer were alive today, he'd be writing about Renny Gold. I would put this up there with the best city park courses I've played, along with Water Works and maybe Hummel.
15 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Renaissance ; A Big Boys Course
10 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Renaissance is definitely deserving of anyones time in the Charlotte area. The remarks of the course being a monster and the hardest course around have made me shy away from it in the past, but oh have been missing out. Renaissance has many elevation changes which make it hike, but not intimidating. It has narrow fairways but doesn't make you feel like you're staring down the barrel of a gun, and its those things that make it a lot of fun. The thing I like most about Renaissance was how well "Broken In" it is. It shows its age but in a really good way making it a disc golfers type course with cool walkways and stairs and benches and even a treestand to over look a fairway. There are many signature hole with pins on boulders and pins built into a side a of a hill which is really cool. There is a board by the practice pin that gives a map and course information. You can even get a free scorecard from the office by the tennis courts.
Cons: I wish some of the review and rumours about Renaissance where that it is a fun course and not that it so intimidating. Me and my buddy played the Black layout seeing it was out first time there and the navigation got to be a little rough at times. Even with a map and some signage the back 9 you start playing holes that are like hole 11 on the Black layout but is hole 13 for the Gold layout, which can get confusing in a hurry. A sign showing you where hole 1 is would not be a bad idea either. Also if you are playing a hole that has the same pin for the Gold layout and the Black layout, you are playing a nice, new Pro 28 Innova DISCatcher, but if you play the Black layout and your pin is separate, you play an old, worn out DISCatcher. Most of the holes you are blind from the pin but the fairways are so well designed and play even better its not to big of a deal. And not thats a real negative but Renaissance is a hike, so bring your walking shoes and plan to be there for a while.
Other Thoughts: Renaissance is the epitome of what disc golf course should be, fun. I give a ton of props to Stan McDaniel for such a good design, and a ton of hard work. It could not been easy building all those barriers for the pins and walkways. I have to put Renaissance right up the with Hornets Nest as Charlotte's premier disc golf courses. This course will definitely test you as a disc golf player but remind you why you love this sport so much.
10 of 12 people found this review helpful.
Wow - lived up to it's reputation!
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - The layout is challenging and awesome. As mentioned, pin placements are unlike most courses. You are forced to risk it to gain a stroke, or layup and play it safe since many are on the sides of ravines.
- Good mix of wooded and open. The wooded fairways are not too tight - they are fair. The open holes (11, 12, 13) are about 10 holes combined distance on my home course. If you have a big arm, they may not be challenging, but for the mere mortal, a 1000' hole into a slight headwind is very challenging....
- The fairways are very well defined - you don't have to worry about trying to figure out your lines. Now, whether you can execute them or not - that is the challenge.
- Mix of elevations
- The landscaping is excellent. It is a little worn, but there are stairs, retaining logs, bridges, etc. So even though the terrain can be challenging (going in and out of the ravine), the people who maintain the course make it accessible (big thumbs up to them).
- Benches at most (if not all) tees.
- Park opens at sunrise
- Great use of having a course in a park with many other amenities, but really not being an issue with endangering non-discgolfers.
Cons: Ticky-tack cons
- The tee signage and maps are lacking. If they were decent and accurate, I would have given a 5. There are arrows posted to give directions, and if you are an experienced DGer you can probably navigate with the help of the map by Tee 1. I'm still not sure if there are 18 holes on Gray or not.
- Poison ivy - (I know, it's NC, it's wooded - in the perfect world, there wouldn't be any!!!)
Other Thoughts: I had Renny all to myself this morning. This was on the list of courses I had to play, and a work trip timed out perfectly. I may edit this review as I run through it again in my mind. Hole 2, 4, 18 were my favorites - probably because the pin placement was super challenging after a challenging hole. This is not a course for beginners. I look forward to trying to play this course every time I come through Charlotte!
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
You Must Play this Course Once
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Every disc golfer needs to play this course once. It's a true destination course with numerous holes that will be remembered long afterwards. There are some truly epic holes here. And I mean epic in the traditional sense, not in the 2010 slang term sense. That sinks in when you see the pin placement on 2. No words of mine could describe it as well as the picture so do yourself a favor and look at it already. And when you reach that pin, and find your disk hopefully on the ledge, you will look across the ravine and see 18 on a ledge by itself. You'll see the stairs that lead both down and up the ravine and you'll probably realize what you have signed yourself up for.
While 2 might be the pinnacle, basket placement is exquisite throughout the course. In that area, Renny is tops amongst all courses I've played. Never have I seen so many precariously perched pins. Never have I seen so many baskets placed just where they should be to give that extra wow factor to the course.
Of course there is more to do than admire beautiful pins here. I like to throw discs at them myself. The hole layout is also rather grand, with a ton, and I mean a ton of variety. Distances range from the low 200s to the 500s on the grey layout and upwards of 1000 feet from the gold tees.
Whichever layout you play, you're going to see thick woods, open meadows, and narrow fairways. The most impressive part of many of them is the construction that keeps much of the course hanging to the side of cliffs. You can see much of the effects of erosion, but you will also see a tremendous effort made to keep it at bay. In between throws, you'll climb stair cases built into hillsides, cross lengthy bridges, and even climb a lifeguard chair, which I assume was put there to spot your buddy's throw.
It's a real experience that I can't recommend enough.
Cons: It is also a course that you only need to play once, in some ways. Especially in summer, this can be a hazardous course. Now that I've been there, seen it, done it, etc, I'm not sure how soon I need to return. It's too epic in a way. I couldn't imagine it being my regular course. I couldn't imagine playing it every day. Partially, because it would take away from the mystique, but partially because I don't think it would be that fun.
Additionally, There's a run of holes, something around 13 to 16, that felt like they weren't up to snuff with the rest of the course. Felt a little but like they just ran out of ideas, or maybe the space they need to use to get to where they wanted 18 to be just didn't leave many options. In any case, the course didn't really close with a bang for me, as much as the first nine, and parts of the back nine were amazing.
However, one issue would be cleared up by frequent returns. The dual layout provide some confusion about what hole plays to where. I had downloaded a map from this site and tried to play a Renny Black that I guess no longer exists. Warning: don't use that map. Things have been apparently changed. Just follow the signs, although even doing that I think I played 16 holes from the grey layout and two from the gold after failing to locate a grey basket.. Not the world's greatest tragedy.
Other Thoughts: A true destination course. You must do this course at least once.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
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