8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Estero was a surprisingly good course tucked into southwestern Florida. It provides variety, challenge and a whole lot of water. More holes feature lurking lakes than don't and even a conservative estimate would consider four of them to be true carries of real difficulty. Two sets of tees mean that discers can opt to tee off from the water's edge on most carries while thrill seekers can back up to the long tees which distance, obstacles, or both to the drive before the disc even reaches the water. This is definitely a course every experienced player passing through the area should not pass up.
The course is mostly open so bombers will definitely find their chances to let rip, whether over water or land but several of the holes are what I would refer to as semi-wooded, with clumps of trees providing gaps or alleys that force the payer to bend to the course. The long tees sometimes used a well-placed tree to remove a specific line that would be attainable from the short tee. I particularly like the use of short palms to create early gaps off of either tee. But make no mistake, this is a mostly open course and water will be the most formidable obstacle throughout. Those who can make the carries will love the natural flights of their discs over the beauty of the ponds and palms. Those who can't should probably skip this one.
Cons: The course is not for everyone as the long hole-lengths and heavy use of water would not be appropriate for lower level players. Some of the carries are over 250 feet even from the shorts. There are also several points at which non-disc golfers may cross or use parts of the course. A few of the holes are very sketchy in this regard and I would hope that specific points of the trail are not used by non discers.
It appears that the course does not hold water well as there several points where casual water had flooded fairways even when it hadn't rained much recently. You should probably be prepared to walk through some muck and for an occasional disc to disappear in unmarked water.
Other Thoughts: Solid variety. Solid challenge. Easily the best course in this section of the state.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Lots of water!
Pros: Challenging, picturesque, concrete tee pads, baskets in good shape. A little bit of elevation.
Cons: Signage could be greatly improved. Easy to lose a disc if your a beginner or have a wild shot due to proximity of water.
Other Thoughts: Fun course but demands attention to shot placement, very nice park.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Prepare to Sacrifice a Disc (or two...)
Pros: The designers did a great job of installing 18 challenging holes within this large, multi-use park. More water in play and water carries than any other course I've played, and that adds a real element of interest/risk to the course.
Two very nice concrete tee pads for each hole. I usually play the more advanced tees when I try a course, but I opted for the short tees and am glad that I did. Some of the water carries from the longs are beyond my comfort range, so I'd be bailing out on those.
Though the course is mostly open and flat, the basket placements require careful ranging and shaping of your drive to score well.
From the shorts, holes are mostly in the 250' to 350' range, with two par 4's that run 447' and 546 feet. The long tee jump the "typical" range up to 350' to 450', with the par 4's running 518' and 715'. So if you love to crank out long drives, the "pro" tees will be right up your alley!!
Hole 1 is one of the most intimidating starting holes that I've encountered. The basket is in a narrow strip of land with trees and a fence line on the right and a large pond on the left. I thought I had thrown my drive perfectly, only to have it fade just a bit more than expected and splash right into the pond.
Four ponds are in play on various holes, either with the basket placed near enough to a pond to require care with placement of the drive, or by requiring a water carry on your drive.
Holes 16, 17 and 18 make good use of the one significant hill in the park, giving you one uphill drive and two downhill holes. The finishing hole is a drive from the hilltop to a basket placed right next to a pond. Another hole where too much fade will cost you a disc.
Huge parking lots available, along with restrooms, water, benches, etc.
Cons: The odds are good that you are going to lose a disc here. On the very first hole I threw my drive exactly as I intended, only to see it fade a bit extra and splash into the pond. The water is deep and murky enough that I didn't recover the disc. So bring a couple of discs that you don't mind donating.
No signage, though it sounds like it is in the works. With the excellent map and scorecard available the lack of tee signs wasn't much of an issue for me. But without the map navigation would be challenging for a first time player.
This is a large, heavily utilized public park, and there are plenty of chances for conflicts with park users. On a Monday afternoon I was surprised at how busy the park was. WIth lots of folks walking and jogging the trails and a few family groups kicking soccer balls around I had to wait several times to play holes. The hill with the 16th and 18th tees and the 17th basket was a particularly popular place for kids to be playing around.
Other Thoughts: This was my 87th course played, and had by far the most water in play. The water carries and baskets placed adjacent to ponds are what made this course interesting and different that any other.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Course lay out is fairly easy to follow the first time out. I liked the how some holes were very challenging and some were moderate to easy. The park the course is in is very nice.
Cons: Lost a disc in the water on hole one. I was poking around in the long grass on the edge of the water and I surprised a small alligator. Scared the you know what out of me.
Other Thoughts: I will definitely play the course again when I am back in the area.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Scenic Fun And Challenging
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: A natural beauty, this course plays through a large multi-use park, featuring several lakes, light to moderately wooded fairways, and a large (by SW Florida standards) hill. Epic signature finishing hole 18.
The course is somewhat easy to navigate, with good pacing and flow.
The holes range from medium length to long and offer plenty of challenge. You probably will use every disc in your bag here.
Most holes have two sets of brand new large size concrete tee pads, that are super grippy. Well done.
Map/scorecards available in rec center and on the board by hole 1.
Some pavilions with picnic tables provide a few nice places to take a rest.
The park was very clean and well maintained. They were mowing the park on the morning of July 4th.
The course has a huge fun factor.
Cons: Multiple water carries and longer distances may scare off the casual players.
There are a couple of longer walks between some holes.
Multi-use park. Care must be taken to avoid throwing at other park users as some of the course is near sidewalks and other park activities.
Sign says dogs only allowed in fenced in dog park, but, they are trying to change the law and every time I have been here I have seen dogs everywhere in this park. So, enforcement seems like a low priority.
Other Thoughts: This is by far the best course in the greater Ft Myers area, IMO.
With gold and blue level tees, though, I would again stress that this course is probably not for beginners.
Warning: Alcohol consumption is strictly forbidden at this park
Update 11/12/16: Red tees marked by two red paver stones on some holes now. Some marked with orange flags. Grass at this time.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 3 Not
New and improved
Pros: playing from Pro tees are 7200+ feet Fun long difficult course that focuses on shot shaping and disc placement. Course was designed to use all types of shots forehand and backhand Lots of dangerous water hazards but with executable safe options if player opts to avoid big water shots from the pro tees. With OB's and the few mandos included in the design this course is head and shoulders over any other local course.
Long holes, placement drives and steady up shots this course will make you work for a good score , and the winds change dramatically from morning to afternoon so it plays different from morning to afternoon rounds. all new tee pads are in place.
Other Thoughts: ALL THE PADS ARE POURED! TEE POSTS ARE DONE AND INSTALLED!!!!!
If you lose a disc check with the front desk of the Park office the lakes are raked and ALL plastic found is turned in to the front desk of the park office, bring an ID the person behind the counter will only turn over discs to the person named on the disc. No "I am picking it up for my buddy", allowed
5 of 8 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Demanding of the finest golf shots throughout the course starting with the first throw of the day, over a lake. There are multiple baskets that play over or near the water, giving you that "should I throw it at the basket or play it safe" deliberation when deciding your line. Opportunities to really air one out and a nice mixture of technical lanes moving left to right, right to left, and straight as an arrow. The 'short' tees play much different than the long tees giving this course 36 different looks from the box.
Cons: A lot of chances to lose a disc and once it's gone it's unlikely retrievable, even the 'short' tees play very challenging around the water.
Other Thoughts: The course has recently undergone a renovation by Baxter Frost a local pro/ architect that has obviously put a lot of thought and effort into making this a high standard course.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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