If you can only play one course at Albert Oakland Park, make it this one
Pros: -Two 18 hole courses in the same park
-Nice large concrete tees
-Maps at the start of the front course and the back course
-Some very fun shots that will challenge most peoples games
-A small pond comes into play on holes 16 and 17. It might be slightly too far for beginners to clear, but there is a safer way along the side.
-Creeks flow through the property providing not only more challenge, but also adding beauty to this course
-Some ace run holes mixed in
-Good mixture of wide open park like holes and tighter more wooded holes
-Next tee signs on the holes (though some of them point in the wrong direction)
-Some low celling's on the more wooded holes force you to place your shot well
-Well maintained park area that seems to get mowed regularly
-Risk / Reward holes where you need to think about your shot
-Baskets are a little old, but still are solid and catch well
-Multiple pin positions on every hole
-Park has lots of other amenities, picnic areas, playgrounds, walking paths, workout equipment, and even a little water park for the kids
Cons: -The flow of this course is terrible, with lots of long walks, backtracking, and potential to end up on the front course by accident
-A guide isn't necessary for first timers, but it does help out a huge amount
-Signs are about useless on holes where they are still there, some are missing all together. Distances are way off, there is nothing marking if you are on the back course or the front course, and the signs could also use to have something to mark which pin position the basket is in (though I did talk with a guy out there who was taking down distances to replace the signs so this could change soon)
-There are a few times you needed to cross the creek and there are very few bridges. Be prepared to have wet feet, you will probably need to walk through the creek at one point or another.
-Other people using the park including a bunch of kids on a field trip, people walking their dogs on the walking paths, and people using the workout equipment around the back part of the course
-After hole 9, the tee pad that seems the most like you should go to it is actually hole 12, to find hole 10 go past it and to the right of the walking path.
-At some point (I think hole 13) there were multiple tee boxes, with no tee sign. This could get confusing if you are traveling from out of the area and don't have a guide.
-At one point we almost ended up on the front course by accident, as the most natural tee to walk to was for the front course and only a hole or 2 off hole # wise. Coupling this with the fact that there is nothing to tell you if you are on the back course or the front one, this could cause confusion.
-Poison Ivy around in a few spots
Other Thoughts: The back course at Albert Oakland Park starts out as a pretty wide open park style course with a few holes that you could open up and let loose a big throw. Once you get to hole 7 the course starts to become tighter and more technical. There are a couple of creeks that flow through the course, and they have been incorporated well, creating excellent risk / reward shots. The one problem with the creeks is that they don't have bridges over them in all the areas that they need them, and as such you will probably have to ford a creek at some point getting your feet wet, just be prepared for that. There is also a pond on holes 16 and 17. It provides a nice little challenge, though experienced players will be able to clear it with ease. If your disc ends up in this pond it will probably be pretty hard to get back as the water is brown with lots of pond weeds growing up through it.
One thing I could highly recommend to all courses with multiple pin positions, like this one, is to have something on the tee signs that indicates what position the basket is in. This doesn't have to be expensive, some washers, bolts, nuts, and a sharpie is all you need to make simple ones.
There is a sign with a map of the course near the first hole. I would highly recommend taking a picture of it, as you may end up needing it to find some of the holes. Finding a guide would also be a great idea if you are trying to play this course as an out of towner.
Over all the back course is defiantly the best course on the property, and I think it has potential to be the best course in town if it were to get some improvements.
One of my favorites
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course will test every shot in the bag. Most fairways are established enough that good lines are rewarded. Plenty of trouble is out there when you miss though. Although every hole is not memorable there are some true gems on this course. The natural landscape is used very well. The creek and lake make for some wonderful scenery. This park is always well maintained.
Cons: Navigation between holes is tough. I could see first timers spending some time looking for the next tee or accidentally ending up on the front course. I could see some bridges being helpful, but I've always been fine without.
Other Thoughts: I might have a sentimental attachment to this course as I played it religiously in college, but I love this course. This course does what none of the st Louis course do in incorporating water so successfully. This is a very well maintained and established course. Some fine tuning and landscaping around tees and pins is all that is needed for this to be a 5 star course in my mind.
I'd recommend this course to anyone. Plus you can go play the front course when you are done to make a day of it. Great course.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Oakland Back Course
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Several pin placements allow this course to range from 5,500' to over 7,000' (championship calibre). Recoverability from bad drives is usually more than fair. Has a good mix of long and short holes.
Cons: Needs a a bridge on holes 7, 9, 15, 16 & 17 (lots of water, and not great ways to cross), especially for kids. Some small amounts of poison ivy in the roughs on holes 5-15. The cedars need to be manicured and trimmed higher so as to retrieve errant shots easier. Needs new signage with up to date measurements and pdga par ratings for each division (this should be happening in the next month)
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Not my favorite....
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Good tee pads, good baskets, and a decent variation in the holes. Some really scenic holes, and some great use of the space available.
Cons: Navigating this course is awful! I'm pretty sure I played part of the front course on accident. Some of the holes are really awesome, but the tee signs are so bad you really can't figure out where you are going.
Other Thoughts: Maybe my least favorite course I've ever played. It has some decent holes, and some that are really cool. But all the cool holes in the world can't make up for an inability to figure out which one comes next.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Good course layout. 3 pin placements for each hole, so it changes frequently. Mix of wooded and open holes. It is more powerful than the front course. Some holes require HUGE drives.
Cons: Scorecards with maps would be amazing for this course. The baskets could be replaced in the near future. Also, the grass gets a little tall from time to time.
Other Thoughts: This is the course that I play the most. It changes a couple of times each season, and I think it is an excellent place to play and practice.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Lot's of variety in the course. Plenty of challenge, yet plenty of opportunities to make up ground if you have a bad hole. The first few holes are fairly open except for 2. Starting with hole 7 you will need to have more careful shot selection to deal with the trees. Until 16 and 17 when you will have to throw over water. Finally 18 is pretty open, but long uphill. It is the best practice course in Columbia because of the variety of hole locations.
Cons: Not much elevation change. Sometimes hard to figure out where to go next. Definitely, helps to have someone with you if you haven't played the course before. For first timers you should know that after hole 4 you will need to cross the parking lot to the east to find hole 5. After playing hole 6 you will need to walk west to the sidewalk and follow it around to the South through the woods and take the left at the split in the walk to get to hole 7. After hole 14 you will need to follow the sidewalk to the North to get to 15. If you walk West from 14 you just run into the front course.
Other Thoughts: Definitely the place to play if you are going to play only one course in Columbia
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Albert Oakland Park...
Pros: Course is located in a park with technical shots and long bombers. Great mix of holes. This course will challenge every shot in your bag. Hole 2 is a HUGE hyzer over some very tall trees. Very fun to play. The wooded holes have a well-defined fairway, while still staying fairly technical. The rough will punish errant shots, but wont put your disc in jail. A small creek runs through the back nine. The water is placed in just the right area for a risk/reward shot. Will you go for it? Or will you lay up and take your three? There is also a small pond in the middle of the course which comes into play on 2 holes. It is, however, very easy to clear if you don't have a huge arm. The baskets are in good condition and work just as well as any other baskets. Tees are concrete, big enough, and still have good grip when wet.
Cons: Not good signage. That's all I have to say about that. It can be hard to find the next hole if your not playing with a local, especially when the front course comes in the same area. No benches or trashcans anywhere. The creek can be very muddy. I wouldn't go in for a disc... Some of the "rough" areas can be thorny, and I think I saw some poison ivy around. There can be some joggers/bicyclists on the walking path, but it's not too bad.
Other Thoughts: This course has great potential, but it lacks some amenities. The arrows pointing to the next tee would be very helpful if the weren't spun in the wrong direction...
If you mark this review unhelpful or you find a mistake, please send me a personal message here on DGCR explaining what is wrong with it
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Where's the next tee?
Pros: Good distance variety. Once you figure out where you're going, the hole usually provides some challenge. The front nine of the back course offer plenty of opportunity to go for big distance. The back nine of the back course is more technical, with some interesting blind shots.
Cons: Poor navigability. Got very confused several times, because the front and back courses overlap toward the end of the back course. The arrows directing you to the next tee are all spun around on the poles they're mounted on, so they're usually worthless.
Other Thoughts: I did not play the front course. It appeared mostly wide open and not nearly as technical.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Varied hole types requiring different types of shots, plenty of room to air it out but not strictly a 'big arm' course, concrete pads, lightly-worn solid baskets, reasonably accurate tee signs, clean course, water hazards, good use of wooded area to make some more technical holes, fairly easy walking.
Cons: Can be difficult to navigate the first time, hole 5 is accessed by walking across a parking lot and plays near a road, could use some more creativity with basket location (for example: 3,4, and 5 are all 'straight at the basket' drives of various lengths), can get crowded with non-DG traffic, needs more trashcans, discs can be lost here both in the woods/undergrowth, and water (creek and lake).
Other Thoughts: Difficulty: Noob - Pro. Probably the most balanced public course in Columbia; very popular with all types of players (many people in Missouri get their DG start here). It pairs well with the shorter and more technical front course.
0 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Not bad for the area
Pros: The wooded holes play really well and are enjoyable. Also they are faily secluded lets you kind of get away.
Cons: Along with the very good holes the are some pretty bad ones link #2 wich basically has you throw blindly into a big patch of trees with no opening in them whatsoever. The course could also use some help in directing you on where next hole is. Could be very confusing for people new to course
Other Thoughts: This course is not great not bad it has some very good holes but also some awful one ie #2
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