A Great Practice Course
Pros: Area is great! Bring your hiking shoes, there are lots of trails near by. It's a relaxed setting and in the heart of Maryville!
Cons: Gravel tees are not maintained. Parts are a little overgrown. No signage on tees but it's easy to figure out. Playing near a road is kind of a bummer.
Other Thoughts: Great beginner and practice course. They are always improving it. While the college campus is nice, it really minimizes a lot of potential this course could have. I hate to rate it low, it's still a fun course! Worth checking out if you live near by.
A Wooded Romp
Pros: Added navigation arrows
Appropriate challenge for par 3 course
Quiet, not crowded even at peak times
Good variance in hole design
Cons: Dirt tee pads need better maintenance
Random vehicles parked near course
Lacks hole numbering and signage at this time
Other Thoughts: This is a fairly new course that is still being improved upon.
Let me start by saying I'm acquainted with a man named Dave who is the husband to one of the professors at the college. He is responsible for organizing and facilitating the improvements to the course and therefore I know of some impending improvements that will be taking place soon. The course is set in the back of the Maryville College campus with parking just feet from the first tee.
The thing to love about this course is the variance in hole design and challenging tree obstacles that make this more of a finesse course than a power course. Each hole plays at approximately 300 feet but rarely involves throwing straight to the basket. My playing group (including myself) are all beginners and we average about 3.6 strokes per hole. The course gives up very few birdies to beginners.
The course is undergoing constant improvements. At the time of this review there are actually 8 baskets with the 9th basket ordered and the date set for 8/23/14 that its installation should begin, making it a true 9 hole course where it started as just 4 holes over a year ago. Recent improvements to navigation include concrete slabs with arrows pointing to the next tee pad. Per Dave, in the coming weeks we can expect course signage to improve, while it's already fairly easy to navigate.
There are a few areas where this course could improve:
There is the minor annoyance of vines hanging down across already tight corridors; the college is very strict about any foliage disturbance or removal to maintain the efficacy and natural beauty of the woods. My group has suffered many a shot that was otherwise great but got knocked down by an errant vine that isn't intended to be a course obstacle.
The tee pads are dirt/coarse sand and could use more regular maintenance such as adding material back to the box after a heavy rain. If you are highly allergic to poison ivy there are some holes on this course that should be avoided altogether: the 3rd hole is deep into a wooded corridor while the 8th hole runs parallel to heavy woods that are ripe with poison ivy. I've personally recovered two unmarked discs from the 8th hole.
The woods where the course is located host many events from engagement pictures to weddings and also contains a pavilion and a lodge so the area has many random parking locations. Holes 5, 6, and 8 have had vehicles parked nearby during my play experience which obviously disrupts things.
Also, if you aren't familiar with the course there can be some difficulty with navigation. This is among the things that is soon to be improved upon. Just follow the arrows and signage is soon to be posted.
In all, I enjoy this course a lot and it has a lot to offer. Objectively, though, it scores a decent score until said improvements are made.
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