Among the best in the Triangle
Pros: - As other reviews have stated, the facilities are top notch. Even if you don't have to use it just step into the restroom to check it out. It smells like cedar.
- Great signs for every hole. Easy to find your way to the next hole.
- Multiple tees for every hole: blue, white, red.
- A couple holes may be in close proximity but I never felt like there was any overlap or a real chance that there would be any interference between groups even if it was busy.
- Nice use of elevation.
- Even though it is pretty heavily wooded there are some longer holes laid out so that it doesn't seem unfair despite all the trees.
- Beautiful trees and a nice clear creek winds its way through the course. Be aware that the water moves quick though if it lands in the water. There are nice bridges at several spots to traverse the creek.
Cons: - It was VERY muddy when I played. To be fair there had been a lot of rain in the area recently, but I played a few other nearby course the same day and this was by far the worst. There were places where mulch had been put down to combat this but I still had to trek through muck on almost every hole.
- Very few benches. This wasn't a problem for me as I was playing by myself and only saw a few other golfers during my round, but if you are playing at a busy time or need to take an occasional breather this would be a downside.
- This may be nitpicky but for a couple holes I felt like there wasn't a great line to make it through the trees. More like chuck and pray. That being said most holes had a clear line to go down (although like many NC courses if you get off the fairway you can add a couple strokes to your score for that hole).
Other Thoughts: I was very impressed by this course. For me it is easily in the top tier of courses in the Triangle area, along with Rock Ridge, Buckhorn, Cedar Hills. The biggest downside was how muddy it was, but of course this wouldn't be a problem during dry times. If you're in the area do yourself a favor and play it.
Great Ideas, Poor Execution
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Amenities and Park Upkeep
Everyone who plays here will agree that this course has 5 Star amenities. The bathrooms? Sweet baby Jesus they're better than most of us have in our homes. The pavilions and vending machines? Top notch. The safety of the course and community? It's Apex, duh. Walking trails, amphitheater, practice green? All fantastic. The town clearly put some serious money into Apex Nature Park. Garbage and recycling available throughout the course and they're emptied on a regular basis.
2 - Great downhill putter shot
6 Short - Two fairway options, RHBH or RHFH
10 - Great downhill putter shot
11 Short and Long - Great straight to right finish hole with an OB creek in front of the basket
12 - Great downhill putter shot
14 Short and Long - Pretty awesome Par 4 from either tee pad
16 Short - Solid RHFH drive
17 Short and Long - Pretty good hole from either pad
18 Short - Great uphill midrange shot, albeit not a great finishing hole
When they're not stolen or vandalized, they have all relevant information and are very clear.
They opted to use the Innova rubber teepads, which are fantastic when implemented properly (Jones Park, Rock Ridge, etc.). However, these were not installed properly and already need replacement less than two years into the course. They are nailed onto wooden boards without any filler, which leads to tearing of the pads. Almost all white pads are done, the blues are still in decent shape because not many people play them.
Speaking of teepads, they are all built on gravel mounds which are not level with the ground. The teepads are not long enough to begin with (especially on 3 Blue, 6 Blue, 8 Blue, 11 Blue, 13 Blue, 15 Blue, 16 Blue, 18 Blue). Can see a trend here? Most teepads do not allow you to have a proper run up, especially on the longer holes and the Par 4's. From the whites, (most) teepad lengths are fine, however a lot are awkward and not long enough. Raising them above ground level prevents you from running up from level ground behind the pad. IMO all of these need to be re done.
1 - Not a bad hole, but also not a great hole 1 for a course.
3 - There are trees in the middle of the line you are trying to hit. Not a good disc golf hole. To make this a "Par 4", they moved the basket back 30' and raised it onto a platform. The hole needs a redesign to make it a real Par 4.. Which brings me to Hole 4...
4 - They recently cut out a fairway to the left of the old basket position, put in a mando, and made it a Par 4. The mando is completely unnecessary and in a terrible spot. You can have a great drive, and miss the mando. If there is ever a PDGA here (not likely from those of us who have looked into it) this will punish players unfairly. Move the hole back 100' (there is room) and get rid of the mando. Make the turn more gradual and not a dog leg.
5 short and long - Not a fun hole. The line is unreasonably tight and the teepads don't allow a proper run up. Not fun.
6 long - They recently moved the hole back 200' to make the hole a "Par 4". I am not a fan of forced Par 4's, and this is another one. Again, the teepad also does not allow a proper run up on a hole that needs it.
7 - This turn angle is ridiculous for most players. 50' forward then a 85 degree righthand turn followed by another 200' with low hanging limbs and trees in the middle of your line. What?
8 long - From the shorts this hole isn't bad. From the longs, a whole different story. There is a tree to the left on the teepad that prevents the RHBH anny shot. Forcing you to throw the impossible RHFH line. Not a fun hole.
9 short or long - There is a dead tree which was left in the middle of the fairway. The top of the tree fell off, leaving the base and about 60' of trunk. Not only is it an eyesore but it also isn't the best line from the longs.
12 long - Another hole where the shorts isn't bad. But due to the teepad and tree right next to the pad, the longs is not a good hole.
15 short or long - Again, teepad issues. There is a fantastic fairway for the first 300' of the hole; then it stops. It turns into Plinko. There is no defined fairway, only random trees, 175' and in from the basket. This seems like another forced "Par 4" as it is reachable from the teepad, but these random trees force you to scramble (from the fairway) to save a 3/4.
18 long - There is absolutely no room for a run up (due to the teepad) to have a good drive.
Other Thoughts: I held off on a review because I knew the course had changes coming.. But now that the changes are being implemented I am very disappointed. This course is not fun for a player of decent skill level. The fairways are for the most part unreasonable. The teepads don't allow a run up. And the blues are not fun, mostly due to the teepads. This is the closest course to me, but it is less fun to play than Kentwood. I would choose ANY other course in the area to play over this one.
Again, the amenities of the park are top notch. However the DG course was not implemented properly. This course has/had so much promise.. But to me Apex Nature Park is a huge let down.
This course could be amazing for beginners.. But the lines and basket placements are not beginner friendly at all. Personally, I would not play a PDGA here, not that there will ever be one.. $$$$$
Bring the family out here for a casual round... But the experienced golfer should spend their time at Jones Park in Holly Springs or Buckhorn in New Hill.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - great layout and variety
- clear signs: on the tees and next tee signs
- great mix of elevation
- nice streams and water hazards throughout - they did a great job of incorporating the water hazards into interesting hole designs that were both fair and challenging.
- good, challenging placements for baskets and for back tees
- three sets of tees for all levels: red, white, and blue tees
- really nice facilities and area
- what par 4's are on the course were really fun, challenging, and well-thought out
Cons: - drainage issues: on the holes where there were streams, the ground wasn't too soggy; but on holes where streams were lacking the ground was not fun to walk through
- one hole, number 7, felt lame. (I probably would extend hole 6 to hole 7's basket and make it into a par 4.)
- some of the holes have distances - from tee to basket - that are farther than what the signs indicate (e.g. hole 6 is listed as being 316 feet from blue tee, but hole is evidently 370 to 390 feet). My guess is they calculated the distances using straight lines from tee to basket instead of considering the curves of some of the fairways (which was fine for the holes that have straight fairways).
Other Thoughts: I debated between a 3.5 and 4.0 for this course, but I give I'll give it a 4.0 to help get it's average up to a 3.75.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Great course from beginner to advanced
Pros: Red, White, and Blue tee boxes to choose from. The reds are very short and beginner friendly. Blues have a lot more distance to cover and are challenging with more tree obstacles. The holes are clearly marked with signage making the Tees, Basket, and Feet information easy to find.
Course was in great condition when I played. Lots of mulch. If you get caught playing in the dark, don't worry, hole #18 has some lights.
The bathrooms are the most luxurious public bathrooms I have ever seen.
Mosquitoes are not that bad.
Hole #1 located off the circle drive, left of the pavilion and practice putting area.
Several water holes which are dry and sandy, so you don't have to worry about having your disc sink or float away.
Cons: Short course. It would be nice to have a little more distance and variety. Favors RHFH or LHBH.
Slightly hard to find. Do not go in the first park entrance on the right, take the second entrance.
No water fountain at the pavilion.
If you start on the back 9, there is quite a walk from 18 back to 1.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Gorgeous Woodland Course
Pros: Lets start with the atmosphere. Quiet, scenic woodland course just a discs throw from the heart of the triangle. One of the nicest practice baskets I have ever seen. Open flat plane right next to hole 1's tee.
Signage was excellent! Detailed sign with fairly accurate footage and lines at every white tee. The red and blue tees also have small markers with the footage at their tees.
Almost every fairway was dry and mulched. Decent use of elevation when available and excellent use of the creek on the back nine. I loved hole 12 which sits on an island amongst a maze of creek beds. Creek plays OB but its a nice element of difficulty added.
Cons: Not too many cons but a few benches here and there would have been nice. Was not the easiest course to find. There are two park entrances and you have to drive by the first in order to get to the park entrance where the disc golf course. Some signage on the road directing you to the right parking lot would have been nice. What really kept this from being a 5 star course is its lack of distance. There were a few par 4's thrown in but I would of loved a few 700 or 800ft par 5's here and there.
Other Thoughts: I can always tell the difference between a park that was built with a disc golf in mind, and one where a course was added later. This was definitely the former. Park was gorgeous with excellent amenities, but there was little to none intrusion with the rest of the park features. Will definitely be playing it again when I am in the Raleigh area.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Beautiful course, fast greens!
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This is the prettiest course I've played in the Triangle. It's not your typical Carolina Scamble; the course is in a mature pine forest and every fairway and green is in in perfect shape.
Apex has terrific, unique and fast greens. Several holes are on steep elevation. One is on a hill just above a creek (hole #11). I hit the basket and my putter rolled right into the drink. (I've never lost a putter before!) Another hole, #12, is on an island green (my favorite hole). #15 is on a raised platform about 3-4 feet tall. Just really unique and fun greens. My favorite aspect of the course.
Good mix of left and right curve fairways, although slightly more right curves than left (a con for this RHBH player).
Lots of trees to contend with, but I thought every hole was fair. Challenging, but fair.
Cons: My only con is the number of right curve fairways outnumbers left curve fairways. I'd rather it be close to equal. I like the opportunity to work on anhyzer shots, but still would prefer a balance.
Other Thoughts: From the looks of previous reviews, they've really improved this course. It's in top shape now. The red tees are short enough for new players to enjoy. The white tees will challenge intermediate players -- and give you a completely different look on several holes. White and blue share a few tees, others are separate. Blue is too tough for me, but I definitely plan on playing white again.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
In my top 5 for sure
I have played about 30 other courses and I must say this is one of my favorites so far. It is an awesome course. Holes flow very nicely. The maps give all the information you need. Most holes have blue white and red tees and are well marked. I really enjoyed the rubber pads (although some could use some leveling). Each hold had a "next tee" sign so getting lost would be hard to do. While pretty much all wooded,it provided an excellent mix of long and short holes. From ace-able par 3's to over 400ft par 4s. Precisioin is key out there. The most unique hole was probably the one that had you shooting thru a tunnel downhill onto an island surrounded by a creek. For those who follow PGA, it felt like a take on the famous TPC at Sawgrass hole 17 (http://www.mcssl.com/content/...grass17.jpg
). The course is a must play for anyone nearby!
Cons: So again, great course, but I did have some gripes. Its elevation changes result in some low areas that have poor drainage. It hadn't rained in a few days when i played but there were still areas that were pretty thick with mud. You can tell they have tried to address the issue with lots and lots of mulch and some creative placement of plastic drain tunnels under pathways, but there was still mud and standing water. Which brings me to my next biggest complaint: mosquitoes. In the areas near the standing water, they were def in full force so make sure you bring some spray before you go out.
Other Thoughts: Again, awesome course! I just wouldn't play right after a big rain and make sure you have some bug spray :-)
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Nice Wooded Course
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: A lot of money has gone into making this place nice. The park has tons of parking and very nice facilities. The baskets are new discatchers and there are two sets of tees with nice rubber mats over gravel. The park has also spread an unbelievable amount of mulch. Hole signage is good and there are "next tee" signs in all the places a new player could get confused.
There are several interesting holes here and from the blue tees it plays pretty long for a wooded course. Although nearly every hole is heavily wooded most holes have a generous enough fairway.
Cons: Even with all the mulch that has been spread I think a significant portion of the course is doomed to be marshy. The white tees have nice maps but the blue tees only get a small distance marker. There are a lot of right finishing holes here, which I wouldn't mind, but several of them are very severe. There are also a couple holes that throw across a walking path.
Other Thoughts: Overall I think the designers did a nice job of fitting a course into the park. It is nice to have a decent course between Buckhorn and Raleigh.
The blue tees provide a nice challenge and it is definitely worth the short trip from Raleigh or Durham to check it out.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Good Challenging Course
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: The first thing worth mentioning when it comes to this course is the investment the town put into it. The facilities are second to none in the area. The baskets are brand new Innova Disccatcher. The signage on each hole is awesome. I like the addition of Par 4's that seem to be a growing trend in the area. They did a nice job creating unique greens on a few of the holes by making creeks guarding the pins (11, 12, 14). I really like that the course has multiple real tee pads to throw from so anybody from a beginner to a pro can enjoy the course. The teepads are also rubber which I prefer. Some critique that it favors lefties but personally I enjoy the course having a different feel and enjoy throwing longer turnover shots. I find it unrealistic to expect every hole to have a long hyzer path.
Cons: I only really have a few minor criticisms of the course. The first is a lack of benches, there are only two on the entire course (4 & 18). I am sure this will be addressed eventually as the course is brand new. There are maybe a total of about 2 or 3 trees I would have cut down had I been designing the course, but this isn't really a Con more preference. I could see the course getting muddy in the wrong conditions.
Other Thoughts: I personally prefer the back 9 more than the front 9. This isn't a knock on the front 9 as much as it is a compliment to the back 9, especially the holes that involve the creek. My favorite holes are 2, 8, 10, 12, 14, and 15. I definitely feel this course is a championship caliber course from the pro tees and hopefully it can be included more in some of the local tournaments.
Also, the course looks nothing like the pictures as these were taken when it was first being built. The back 9 has been reconfigured with a different layout and the course is now much cleaner and kept due to the removal of some trees, mulching of all fairways, and maintenance of some greens. The video in the Media tab is a much better indication of the current status of the course.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
New Kid on the Block
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Overall it's a shorter and technical/wooded style course.
Atmosphere - Apex Nature Park is a new edition to the area and the city spared no expense putting this one in. The facilities are top notch and a lot of time and care went in to the construction of this place.
The course itself flows the wooded section of the park and although you never get the real secluded feeling it's a pleasant little area with some great geographical features.
Layout - The course offers up three tees which I would say suits the skill level of novice, intermediate and advanced. The majority of my review will focus just on the two harder layouts.
The entire course consists of wooded holes although a few holes have wider more forgiving fairways that allow you to work a disc in a number of ways.
A few holes give you multiple routes to choose from though for the most part you're trying to hit a particular line the length of the fairway. Most of the holes are heavily walled with a mix of trees so getting off line can mean trouble.
The white/intermediate course consists mainly of shorter shots under 300'. There's a good wealth of shot shapes and the flow of the layout does a good job of mixing things up so it stays interesting; even though you'll mainly just be using mids/putters.
For less experienced players this course can be a fun yet challenging task; probably a good course to learn to shape shots on. For more experienced players you'll be looking to get birds although there's more than a few holes that come with danger; good shots get rewarded.
The long/blue course is meant more for experienced players, less skilled players will probably have a hard time navigating fairways due to the added length.
The blue tees do a good job of changing the look of the tee shot just a bit on some holes so the gaps you need to hit are squeezed. Or in some cases the blues just back you up enough so that hitting that first gap while also staying on the correct line becomes more challenging. Most players will probably pull out a fairway driver on a handful of holes that require more D.
The front 9 from both layouts is more about hitting straight tighter gaps while the back 9 gives you holes that generally require more shot shaping.
There's a few par 4's on both courses; all reachable from the tee if you have the D and skill. However for the most part you're just playing a technical layup shot then moving forward.
The course has decent elevation changes with short but quick slopes though overall there's no drastic up and downs. What is there is used in a really solid way to add difficulty and create some faster greens.
A creek comes in to play on the back 9 on three of the holes. It's used very well and creates some cool greens, especially on #12.
The flow of the course is easy to follow and intuitive. There's two different parking lots for the park and you can jump on the course at any number of holes.
Overall the course does favor LHBH/RHFH but I personally don't consider this a con, us RHBH guys have plenty of courses in our favor. If anything it helps you work on your game.
Equipment - Brand new discatchers. Rubber hexagon mat pads for the two longer layouts. Tee signs located at white tees with map/distance of each hole. The other tees do have smaller signs listing just distance.
Park facilities conveniently located. Course bulletin board by #1.
Cons: Layout - To me the biggest problems of the course come from the limitations of the land. It's all a bit squeezed in together although the course does a good job of keeping fairways separate.
There wasn't a lot of land to really be creative and this is apparent mostly on the front 9 which was designed with some prior limitations. The lines here are less imaginative and mostly straight gap hitting.
There are some holes that still have that one tree in the middle of the fairway that makes it based more on luck than skill.
In a few areas the course comes back to the walking path and you will have to watch out for casual park goers before you throw. It's nothing serious because they'll be visible and most of the time the tee is right beside or on the path in these situations.
If there were a few more shots that went right to left the course would be more balanced. There's also no real open shots where you can rip something if that's what you're looking for.
Atmosphere - Again, there's a few areas where you need to be considerate of other park goers and err on the side of safety. You're in the woods but you're not alone.
A good portion of the course is in a low area so when it rains the course can get very mucky, it's best not to play right after a rain; although the parks dept has done a great job with throwing done a ton of mulch to combat this.
Equipment - The rubber pads are nailed down on to sunken wooden platforms. It doesn't make a lot of sense to me and only time will tell how well these hold up but I don't consider it the best way to do it; although I think the rubber mats are the most appropriate for this course.
Other Thoughts: To me with some tweaks and more breaking in this course could be a 3.5 but it's getting better every time I go.
I think this is a great addition to the area even though it doesn't really add any diversity in terms of what was already here. It's just more NC style technical golf in the woods; yet it does a good job of dishing out fun and challenging rounds depending on your skill level.
The park itself is super nice so if you're traveling with your family I'd put it up there as a really good place to stop. Check out the bathrooms by hole 1 they're insanely nice, it's ridiculous.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
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