Niles, MI 
Madeline Bertrand Park Share
Uploaded By: DiscChick Hole #12 (Taken 5/2008)
3 / 165ft. Par / Distance:



Reviews: 25
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5+    6/9/2014   6/9/2014
Review By: Indiana574
Played: 7  Reviewed: 6
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Nice teepads pretty clean. A garbage can at almost every hole. Nice pro shop with a good selection of innova disc
Cons: Some hole are pretty short. Pay to play some ppl don't like this but I have never cared
Other Thoughts: Very nice park threw the woods hole 12 is pretty cool

0 of 1 people found this review helpful.

a little slice of history

1    3/29/2013   3/29/2013
Review By: apdrvya
Played: 245  Reviewed: 238  Exp: 4.4 Years
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros:
Aesthetic- Course winds through a moderately dense wood and intertwines with a hiking trail. no other activities take place around/near the dg course. Beautiful park.

Teepads- Big, level and pointed in the general direction of the basket. helpful for when signage is missing.

Baskets- mach v and in good repair. grippy, they catch discs nicely.

Routing/Nav- easy easy, the paths are pretty easy to follow and have been followed for years so they are super worn in.
100% signage would help though.

elevation/uniqueness- there are some very unique holes here. #11 comes to mind where it follows the culvert left then right, immediately followed by the little "ravine" shot. Elevation is used fairly well where it is available.

Upkeep/Staff- the upkeep is reasonably nice and the staff is super friendly in the proshop/visitor center.

It's a steady ed course!- nice to play a course designed by the godfather.
Cons:
Pay to play- I have to agree on this one. if I am paying $11 for two people to throw here, I expect 100% signage or a score card or something to help with navigation

Variety/length- most holes are sub 250' and don't offer a ton of challenge. putter/ mid off of the tee and putt (putt) done.
Other Thoughts: as a piece of history from a different era this is a definite stop for anyone in the area (south bend area) but a destination course, it certainly is not. a very quick play and fun but not much challenge.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

Old School (Updated 2013)

5+    7/5/2013   9/2/2012
Review By: davetherocketguy
Played: 36  Reviewed: 22  Exp: 10.1 Years
This review was updated on 7/6/2013
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Great layout - while it might be short it is a ton of fun.
- Some holes are very ace-able but because of pin and tee-pad layout many are not.
- Benches and trash cans at most tees. Didn't really keep track of exactly how many there were but it certainly seemed like more than enough.
- Unique holes (like 12) that play off of an elevated tee and throw over a small ravine which make play fun.
- Staff I encountered were pleasant and professional.
- This is set in a nice park which has oodles of walking trails.
- The baskets, while a little old are in great shape.
- Nice little pro-shop. Not something you see everyday. Too bad they only carry Innova discs but the prices seemed very reasonable.
- Fairly clean when I have played here. Seems that trash is picked up and taken care of for the most part.
- New in 2013 are all sorts of steps and erosion control measures in place all over the course. This is a much needed improvement. Very nicely done and kudos to the staff for getting it put into place.
- Tournaments...These are unsanctioned and there is no payout but they are a lot of fun. All sorts of door prizes handed out, lunch included and trophies for the top in each division.
Cons: - Pay to play - While this isn't really much of a con they do charge for parking AND for disc golf. If you come, bring a big carload and keep the cost per player down.
- If pay to play weren't annoying enough there is the wristband thing the park is doing. Every player is required to don a wristband and it has to go ON YOUR wrist. Completely unneeded IMHO and extraordinarily irritating. Two words Berrien County...BAG TAGS.
- Short. Very Very short. No place to really open up and rip it. Even with my noodle-arm that can only manage 300 to 320 there really aren't very many decent spots to let one go. Hole #1 is almost a joke with a dead-straight wide open shot at 180'. Yawn.
- Huge numbers of people play here. Not a big deal but some lessons in etiquette would be a big plus. Groups as large as 10
Other Thoughts: This is a very old course in terms of disc golf. While it is a fantastic layout it is an out-dated design. Even so, it is in many ways rather timeless since it is still challenging and fun to play.

if you are in the area hit this course up. It is worth the time and money IMHO. While it may not be an Idlewilde or a Flip City by any stretch it is truly unique disc golf experience. Try to avoid weekends and holidays and the crowds should be manageable.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

Fun for a power lunch

5+    8/8/2012   8/8/2012
Review By: stoltzjl77
Played: 111  Reviewed: 11  Exp: 20.5 Years
This review was updated on 7/25/2013
Pros: Beginner-friendly but requires a variety of shots. Fairways nicely-shaped by woods that can be thick in places to penalize errant tee shots. Course is clean and in decent condition, and while it is missing signs the layout is intuitive for the most part with a nice map on the scorecard in case you get turned around.
Gullies add fun potential elevation changes on some holes.
Decent selection in pro shop - watch for sales as you can get essentially dealer pricing when they are clearing out inventory.
***Updated 2013*** Adding a half-star because somebody did a fantastic job sprucing up the course over the winter - erosion control and new signage added, course looks fantastic!
Cons: Short. Very short. And it is too compact to allow for alternate tees or pin positions to be installed.
Pay to play and park, though the combined annual pass is reasonably-priced - get your money back after 8 or 9 rounds.
Other Thoughts: If I didn't live/work close enough to the park to make the season pass worth it I'd be more upset about paying to play. It really is a nice course and the baskets are in great shape, as are the tee pads.
It is a fun course to play if you can get away for an hour at lunch and sneak in a quick round - no danger of spending more than 30-35 minutes here!

 Get Technical

1    7/26/2012   8/2/2012
Review By: alexjensen
Played: 42  Reviewed: 11  Exp: 6.1 Years
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course was a blast to play and a must play if you are in the area. Though fairly short, this course is very technical and offers a variety of shots. Every hole is fairly tight and offers a variety of lines to get to the hole. Anytime I am wrestling in my bag with what disc to throw I know I'm on an excellent course.

Tons of tree obstacles, but not impossible ones. Clear but challenging lines to just about every pin.

Good pro shop, which I replaced a disc I had lost a few weeks prior at, very reasonable prices. I always enjoy getting a scorecard and course map as well, which they had in the shop for free.

I elected to bring the majority of my bag out on this course, which I was glad for. You will literally need to throw every midrange and putter you have in your bag to play this course. As stated before, a driver is not incredibly necessary if you can bomb a midrange over 300, but I used every disc in my bag on this course.

It is very well trimmed so there isn't too much worries about loosing a disc. Everything off the main lines is pretty clear, and there is enough traffic to pack all the thick brush down.

I play with my girlfriend who throws around 200. This course was awesome for the two of us to play because we could stay competitive without the length giving me an unfair advantage.
Cons: It costs $4 to play, but it's totally worth it. I wouldn't say the length is a con because I'm a fan of the shorter more technical courses.

Don't bring a new player here as it's way too technical for someone that is just starting to have fun at.

You're not allowed to drink on the course, but I did and didn't get in any trouble for it. There are plenty of garbage cans too toss the empties.

The course wasn't super well marked, but the trails are clear enough to understand where to go. I had to run up multiple holes to find out where the pin was. This was slightly annoying as I really appreciate a good hole map at the beginning of every hole.This is my biggest con of the course.
Other Thoughts: Way too fun not to play if you're in the area. As long as you're with a group of players willing to throw the technical courses you will have a blast.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.

 Decent short course

1    7/15/2012   7/15/2012
Review By: cmchavis
Played: 25  Reviewed: 12  Exp: 32.6 Years
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course was put in in 1985 and it shows. The course and the hole lengths in general are, by today's standards, short. The longest hole is 376' and the entire course length is 4240' but despite the length, the course is fun to play. Lending to this - the course has a nice variety of tree obstacles, hole variety and is well maintained.

The standard amenities are present - concrete tees, a practice basket, benches, etc. An Eagle Scout's project was to add benches and there is a bench available at each hole which is nice and they get used because this course gets busy.

The pro shop has pencils and scorecards available. back of the scorecard has a course map, but the course is well laid out and doesn't really need a map. There were only two navigational issues we had. First was hole 6 - the basket is offset and if you look straight ahead on the 6 fairway, you see the basket for 7. The basket for 6 is obviously though if you are looking around.The other item was the steps leading up to the 12 tee - at the basket for 11 there are other paths leading away from the basket, so be sure to take the steps up to the next tee and not the path. Simple enough though.

Holes 12 and 13 are pretty cool 'throws over a ravine' type shot. For beginners, the thrill of having to throw over the ravine is pretty cool - although 12 is short, having the elevated tee is cool. Most of the other holes are straight shots - but offer some mid line shaping opportunities.

Saw a few groups of, what I guessed were dads out with their kids playing was pretty cool. My 7 year old threw on a couple holes and did well on a few holes.

Regular restrooms at 1 & 18 by the visitors center.

Cons: I did notice a few missing tee signs, but having the scorecard map available and for most of the holes, you can see the basket from the tee made the tee signs unnecessary.

This is a short course, so it's not a very big con, but the course starts at the parking lot and doesn't return again till 18. The entire course is tree covered, but on a hot one - bring a drink.

As stated above and just about every other review - length. There are 7 holes under 200' for the majority of holes the basket is a straight shot from the tee.

With today's players being able to throw well over the hole length here. There were a couple holes where people were teeing off and throwing into a group that was teeing off on the next hole.
Other Thoughts: The pro shop has a great selection of discs for a decent price which is a nice surprise for a county park. Pay for disc golf at the visitor center - they do take debit with a $5 minimum.

There is a sign posted that no walk-alongs are allowed on the course and that all people on the course must have wrist bands. I took the family and they walked with me without a problem. $4.00 for a wrist band - that allows unlimited play, so play a couple times.

Holes 3, 5 and 18 are the only real right handed hooks on the course - RHBH. So having a highly overstable utility disc helps here for a sidearm throw. As stated in other reviews though - you don't need any high speed distance drivers here. In fact, there isn't any need, at all, for long bombs - the longest hole (376') has a fairly narrow gap straight out from the tee, so having a good straight driver is about all you need here. A stable mid or even a putter will get you through most of the other holes.

Overall a decent little course. Being out of state and only having time to play a single round - I probably wouldn't go back for $9. ($5 parking - $4 DG) but if I had time to play a couple rounds I would stop in and play. If I lived close I'd get the pass to work on my short game.

This is probably a 2.5 course, but it's fun and quick, so it gets the bump up.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

 She's My Chubby Girlfriend

5+    11/18/2011   9/28/2011
Review By: TorboniousD
Played: 23  Reviewed: 3  Exp: 6.4 Years
This review was updated on 3/22/2012
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I absolutely love this course and as a beginner it has taught me the values of having more in my bag then a bunch of drivers. Yes, you can probably play the whole course with a putter, but practicing a heavy S-curve while threading the needle in a heavily wooded area with a fairway-driver has its value too. Great mid-range shots and putting are important in this game too, or so I've been told. I'm no Happy Gilmore, but the narrow fairways have done a good job of helping me to straighten out my drives as well, and I find even when I'm off the fairway, the underbrush is pretty well beat down so unless the throw is completely horrible, I can find my disc no problem. The staff is completely friendly unless you decide to break the local county laws. They also have three tournaments a year with multiple teirs from the novice to open for trophies and swag. Only $20 which includes all-day play, parking, lunch and drinks. I call this course "My Chubby Girlfriend" because she's clean, nice to my new friends, and after getting my feelings hurt somewhere else I can come to her and she makes me feel like a hero. Great pro shop, and at the end of the year they sell all their discs at HUGE discounts...
Cons: For what they charge, if they kept the course up in the winter they would make bank. This sport has no "season', so I would give them much higher marks if they kept it open year-round. ANYWAY, yes, it's a short course. Play it twice and shoot for par, hero. YES, it is expensive. Park at the Indiana park south of it and walk over the border (most people do) or do like I do and buy an annual play and another annual parking pass (save $20 if you buy both at the same time for $60) which also gives you access to another county park that has a sweet beach on Lake Michigan. It pays for itself in a couple weeks if you play often enough. The signage also doesn't show the pin/tee location, but they have maps or join a couple locals playing.
Other Thoughts: It also has a great putting basket and they also sometimes add extra holes for the tournaments. AND to this date I can't ever recall seeing ANYONE walking around with just a putter... DID YOU KNOW THE LATE, GREAT ED HEADRICK designed this course?!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

 Fun course

1    8/28/2011   8/29/2011
Review By: jimmie51
Played: 49  Reviewed: 5  Exp: 4.3 Years
This review was updated on 9/30/2011
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This course is in a nice park and pretty close to town so getting there is simple. The course is well taken care of and was easy to navigate. Short but challenging holes. The course is just plain old fun. Not the most challenging, not too easy, just fun.
Cons: None really. It is a pay to play course but I never have issues paying for a course if you can see the money going back into the park and course and it is here. I would like to see them dropping the pay to play for the younger kids though. Say under 16 or 18 play for free. The price was fair, but alot of kids don't have the funds to be paying every time they want to play a course that is so local to town.
Other Thoughts: Some of the holes have fairly high par ratings. There was a par 5 that I hit a 3 on, and some par 4's that honestly arn't needed for a solid experienced disc golfer. I am no pro by any means, I consider my self to be average and I shot two under and this was the first and only time I've played this course. I would reccommend playing the course if your in the area for no other reason its just fun

0 of 2 people found this review helpful.

 Beginner/Intermediate

1    4/30/2011   5/1/2011
Review By: notapro
Played: 417  Reviewed: 280  Exp: 11.2 Years
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Course is set in a lightly forested area, with some sandy fairways and gentle hills. The disc golf seemed to be well separated from the rest of the park.
- Majority of the holes are in the forest to some extent, with a wide variety of lines present. A lot of them are pretty simple, and open, but the shots vary from hyzer to anhyzer, with a ton of straightish in between. Having a wide variety of shots, especially approach shots, can be extremely useful here (FH, BH, various OH can be handy). Eight holes are at or under 200', but they are pretty diverse. Some medium length holes help to mix things up, which are of similar superclass design.
- Four of the holes are over 300', which so it's not a complete putter course. A few of the shots are pretty tricky, and definitely need a particular line off the tee. There is some rougher terrain/hazards present as well, where saving par isn't a given. Even balance of lefts and rights overall.
- Some protected baskets, which are usually hazards off the tees as well. Most of the greens are pretty fair, but failing to get there can lead to a very tight or blocked approach/putt.
- Some slight elevation changes, with a small ravine to get over on one hole, and a down and left sloped green at the end of a longer one.
- Good tees and baskets. Old school tee signs including random Out of Bounds signs in some rough (I doubt anyone pays attention to these). Navigation is easy with available map and scorecard.
Cons: - Biggest con here, for most players, is the old-school set-up. Hole lengths are extremely short overall, and usually have a free and clear line to the basket. Layout is also smushed together, so today's high speed discs can easily find other fairways and teepads.
- Course can get a little repetitive inside the forest, as the scenery doesn't change that much. There are some gnarly spots, and some sloped areas, but overall it is flat with trees.
Other Thoughts: - I always have a soft spot for some good old-fashioned superclass courses, and this doesn't disappoint. Some longer holes are present as well, which add some real difficulty here and there. Fantastic course for beginners, and a good place to shoot low for developing players. Experienced players know what's in store at a course like this, maybe worth a visit to see some of the tougher holes.
- Pro shop has a decent selection of Innova, and some odds and ends. Take a look when paying.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.

 Could be better

1    3/26/2011   3/30/2011
Review By: mashnut
Played: 815  Reviewed: 763  Exp: 12.6 Years
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course plays through nice woods with enough trees and underbrush to punish errant shots, but not so much that you'll leave discs or blood behind. The course is mostly flat, with a couple holes using small elevation changes pretty well to add interest. Most holes call for accurate line shaping to stay out of the rough, it's a great place to work on short but accurate drives.

The baskets are in decent shape, and catch fine. The tees are nice concrete pads that are poured well and in good shape. I didn't see any trash, which is nice on a secluded wooded course like this. The course has the area to itself, with no interference from other park activities.
Cons: I'm usually the last person to complain about pay to play, I don't mind contributing a few bucks to play especially when it goes toward the course. I found it a little much here though, with a fee just to get into the park, and then another separate fee to play the course, it adds up to quite a bit. It doesn't seem like that money goes into the course, as 16 of the signs are missing leaving the course not numbered and a little hard to follow.

There's some nice land here, and I didn't feel like the design made the most of it. It gets really repetitive with lots of fairly short holes and similar lines, especially with how little elevation change there is. With this much money charged for each player, you'd expect a little more challenging and fun layout. On the holes that do have some elevation changes there are some major erosion issues, a wet day would be pretty slick out here.
Other Thoughts: Beginners can have a really good time here. It will be challenging, but not overly so, with reasonable lengths and chances to recover from the rough. More experienced players won't find it terribly challenging, and won't find enough variety to keep it interesting for more than one round. Don't go out of your way to play this one, it's just not nearly exciting enough to justify both a park fee and the fee to play.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.

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