3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I have a bit of a soft spot for Bart. The design of the course is awesome first and foremost. As I understand it is the oldest course in Austin. 15 great holes with alternate boxes on holes 1, 2, and 3 to make a full 18. When I began playing I found this course favored fore hand throwers which was my style back then. It has very challenging technical windows and big bomb fairways. Conditions and requirements change on nearly every hole. I have never had a round on the course where I didn't enjoy myself. A shorter course if you find yourself in need of a quick round.
Cons: Bart's natural tee boxes are in extremely bad shape, dug out and eroded. The city has done a better job of maintaing it over the last year, but it can still get overgrown in a hurry. It is an easy course to lose a disc on. Navigating from tee to tee can be difficult. There is no map at the course, if possible first timers should play with a local.
Other Thoughts: I have heard a lot talk that this course in on the block to be redone. I can't think of a course in Austin that is more deserving or more in need. In my opinion it is a jewel and one of my favorite plays in the Austin area.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
could be great
Pros: -great terrain for disc golf
-creek in play on half the holes
-nice elevation changes on half the holes
-good variety of types of holes: distance, woods, elevation, water hazards
-decent parking, easy to find
Cons: -navigation is bad
-needs tee signs badly
-dirt tees are rutted (tee 11 has a basket sleeve in it - WTF??)
-old baskets have extra added layer of chains but very shallow baskets
-no creek crossings, hope the water is down
-general lack of maintenance
-is there another tee on hole 3? other reviewers mentioned throwing off the top of a hill but i didn't see another tee
i had a real hard time following the layout. there are large sections where it is obvious where to go next but several places are not so obvious: where to go after hole 2, which basket to shoot at on hole 5 (hole 6 basket looks like the obvious choice but is not), no marker at all for tee 9, easy to miss hole 11, looks like the tee for 12 could be halfway down the fairway if you're coming from 10 (like i was).
Other Thoughts: This old course has seen better days but still has a bunch of great golf. It clearly shows its age but this course could be really great with some new signs and tees. The terrain is excellent for golf with lots of trees and elevation, a creek in play, and a great variety of shots and hole types.
Holes 1, 2, 5, 7, 9, and 15 have great elevation changes and the creek comes into play on 1, 2, 5, 7, 9, 10, and 12. I really like the way each area of the course has its own character and challenges presented.
One of the biggest problems here is that the course has been altered so many times that it is confusing to figure out what is really happening. The basket sleeve in the middle of tee 11 is indicative of this. The course really needs a make over that solidifies the new layout, repairs all the tee areas, adds new signs and removes the old/superfluous tees, basket sleeves, etc.
Perhaps I'm making a big deal where it isn't necessary. The course is challenging and a lot of fun with many of the elements that make a great course. If I lived nearby I would play it all the time but as an out-of-town first timer, I was annoyed by the conditions and difficulties in navigation.
Overall, a great place to play a round. The golf here is 3.5+ but the condition is 2.0 so my rating is an average. Hopefully the locals give it the love it needs.
**Like this review? Hate it? Message me and let me know why! I want to make them better!**
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
love this course
Other Thoughts: This is the first course I ever played disc golf on back in the 80s. So many great times. Unfortunately I returned to Austin about 5 yrs ago and headed straight to Bartholomew. I was so disappointed in how run down the park and course was. I'm glad to see some of the recent reviews said they are working to clean it up. Please Austin save Bartholomew! You might have better courses now but Bart is a classic.
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Bart is back and getting some love
Pros: This was the course where I learned to play a long time ago. I had heard it was cleaned up (though just 15 baskets) and that the Waterloo club was going to start holding mini's and work on improvements... so I came back and I was pleasently surprised.
Course looked great, just as I'd imagined. baskets were in good shape and tee boxes wern't that bad (for being dirt). A few changes had been in layout, but overall was a great experience.
Course has a great mix of shots; The usual straight, hyzer and anhyzer mix, but adding in elevation makes those so much more fun.
The elevation changes are what make this course so cool, such as:
Hole 1 & 7 where you and the basket are both on top of hills with a creek running between...
Hole 4: basket is a straight shot, but up an incline that makes the hole feel farther than it is (hole 11 is similar, but with way more trees)..
Hole 9 where you shoot straight down a hill through a tunnel and into a basket sitting on the edge of the creek...
Hole 15 (old 18) which is basicaly wide open (a couple trees try to get in your way) and waaaay downhill...
or the infamous hole 3 where you tee off from the highest point in the park and throw out and over the trees to a basket far away.
Cons: 1. Only 15 baskets.
2. Course needs tee signs.
3. bushes on hole 2 will need to be cut.
4. There are a couple spots where it is hard to get across the creek.
5. Needs more trashcans and benches.
6. The creek smells (it always has).
Other Thoughts: Hopefully the course improvements will fix issues 1- 5 above. Granted, winter is just ending, but I saw no overgrowth when I played so I didn't mark that down as a negative.
This is a great course and even at 15 baskets it is still one of the best in Austin today.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Legendary Course Gets a Haircut...Cleans Up Well
Pros: -Elevation Changes throughout, unique layout
-Baskets have 3 layers of chains
-Course demands a variety of shots, with different lines to take
-Bartholomew is cleared out now! There was extreme overgrowth last year which made this course terrible.
Cons: Thanks to the city and other individuals who helped clear Bartholomew out. This course is actually passable now
Very little signage...if signs are there they are old
Tee Boxes are worn down
Other Thoughts: I'm glad I'm able to rate this course as a 3.0 and not a .5
Again, thanks to the folks who cleaned and cleared this out.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Respect the Classics Man!
Pros: God bless good design. I love a good old course that can stand the test of time and offer a challenge with the newer disc technology. I can only imagine the overall difficulty Bart presented when it was first opened back in 1982. From hole one - you know you're going to see some interesting lines on some diverse terrain. Heading into a tight hole #2 - you had better shoot straight or force one into the hill on the right or get wet in the creek to the left. A great example of risk versus reward. If you're on - you'll love life, but if you are off watch out.
The majority of holes play great elevation shots either up or down throughout the course. The length is good and presents some open holes to satisfy the big arms as well as tight technical shots for woods lovers. The course also comes back on itself, finishing in a big although a little lackluster #15 (originally #19). However, this place ultimately goes back to being a fantastic layout that maximizes the land and stands the test of time. The park has facilities past the hole #11.
BEST HOLE/S: #7; #9
Oh boy - where to begin? How many courses have you played from the early 80's that one - exist, and two are in fantastic shape? Bart is no exception. Four holes (Original #12-#15) are gone due to park construction from a few years back. Many play #1-#3 again to play a full eighteen holes. The creek was greatly improved to make a nicer #11, but the sacrifice is playing fifteen holes over the original nineteen. Rumorville is that this course is next in line for redesign after Searight Park
gets finished up, so time will tell.
The tee boxes are natural and rutted from years of use, and there is no real signage, so you'll have to rely on a local or your map for navigation. Truth is, only the first three or four holes are a bit confusing to first-timers, and after that there's a pretty good flow. The baskets are in decent shape, but like everything else show its age.
The OB is a positive or negative depending on your point of view. Barbed wire fences for example on #12 (original #16) are a real negative (and I have the stitches to prove it!), but force you to throw mandos and make good shots, so you can be the judge. There are more "manmade" hazards than I would like in a course - call me a tree hugger I guess - but I prefer my rounds lost in the deep woods rather than shooting over concrete walls in a park.
WORST HOLE/S: #3; #6
Bartholomew Park is like a good old book. It's worn, torn, and at first glance looks ready for the trash - but then you open it up and remember all the good things you love about it. The couple times I've been out here - I've never been disappointed, but I have to always remember that this is one of those courses that was old when the sport was still new. I take these things with a grain of salt on a course like this more than others based on its history and the fact that I don't finish a round at ten under because it was old, short, and boring. It made me work, think, and choose my shots wisely, which is the most important thing I can ask for in a course.
I really hope the course is redesigned and cleaned up, but I would hate to see it lose any integrity from the original layout. Sure, it has a lot of obvious problems on the surface, but look past the flaws and don't skip it just because the brand new MetCenter DGC
is right down the road. My advice is hit them both and have a good time.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Pros: Nice variety of shots. Long, woody, elevation, OB - everything.
Cons: Water, Water, Water! TALL WEEDS! REally tall weeds! Loose you disc tall. Tee boxes dug out and full of roots. Right next to the street on a few holes. Still missing 3 baskets!
Other Thoughts: Weeds so tall, you can't see anything. My roommate and I lost a disc the first time we played and found one of them the next. Yeah for good karma.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: There are quite a few holes with elevation changes.
The designer must have loved blind holes. I've never seen so many on a course.
There is a creek with water that you are always throwing around, over, parallel to, or even into.
There is a good quantity of trees throughout the course with plenty of shade for play in the mid-day summer sun.
Easy to follow for first timers as long as you print the online map and take it with you. If you don't have a map you will never even find tee #1.
Good parking, trashcans, picnic tables throughout.
Cons: Absolutely no signs anywhere on the course. With as many blind holes as there are, a sign with the pin location and distance would be nice. If you don't bring a map your first time you will not be able to find your way like you would on most courses.
Dirt hole tee pads are an Austin standard.
I was lucky not to throw into the creek. It does not look like a fun place to retrieve a disc from due to snakey looking dense vegetation and green stagnant water.
Other Thoughts: I wish I hadn't waited so long to try this course.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.