10 Helpful / 0 Not
Candy Cane-Shaped Fairways are Dumb
Pros: This course is well maintained. with nice facilities. The signpost you walk by between the parking lot and hole 1 tells you which position the baskets are in, and info on leagues and such.
Every hole has a nice concrete teepad, and very different A and B alt pin placements. The tee maps are some of the best I've seen, with the lines and distances for both A & B pins, next tee location, even showing contour lines for elevation changes, a great idea I haven't seen on any other course.
All of the baskets are correctly numbered and in pretty good shape.
The different pin placements drastically change the holes, in length and shape. Usually, one pin is to the left, the other to the right, with the next tee between them for a good flow from either. In fact, due to the close proximity of many tees with the previous baskets, this course flows pretty well. Thanks to the good markings, even if you aren't sure which tee or basket is the next one, you can always find out by getting a closer look.
The course is set on a mostly open park with rolling hills and several scattered clumps of trees. Though the course is mostly open, most baskets are concealed off the tee, and there are many instances of doglegs left or right through trees. What patches of woods exist are used on several holes as hiding places for baskets, or to bend the hole around.
Every basket on this course is protected in some way. Sometimes its enclosed in a patch of woods with a narrow path leading in. Oftentimes it is obscured behind such patches, forcing extreme candy cane-shaped doglegs that double back on themselves in many cases.
Though the baskets are often well-guarded, the openness of most fairways give you good opportunities to place your shots at the best angle for approaches and putts, and makes the short game much easier than the well-protected nature of the baskets would suggest.
Also, the terrain comes into play on almost every hole. This park was different that what I was used to, with more rolling, gradual hills, but few flat areas, so the elevation became a subtle factor in every hole, but not an extreme factor as on mountainous courses, or certain Wisconsin courses like Justin Trails or Baraboo. At East, it mainly means some holes play a little shorter or longer than the distance would indicate, and rollaway putts can happen.
Despite the high number of blind tee shots, this course is fairly easy, played as all par 3's (the listed pars on the tee signs are really high, just ignore them). Every hole is easy to get a 3 on with a solid drive, accurate approach and a short to medium putt. There are obstacles that keep it fairly interesting, but this is mostly just a forgiving, fairly open, fairly long bomber course in an idyllic park setting. Its kindof a happy medium, not wide open, but not super technical either
This course does require a little thought and some shot selection, and lots of good, longer drives, though still reachable for people with at least 250 max-D. Its a good place to warm-up for the more technical and challenging West course
Cons: Course Design. Evidently, this course was designed by a handyman/engineer who didn't really play DG, and though that makes many of its features more impressive, it also shows, in several areas.
Many teepads are very close to one or both of the previous pin placements, and in such a way that it would be easy to get hit by a drive from another hole. The holes seem very very crammed into this park, and though no fairways cross, there are several instances where another tee pad is just off to one side.
As a result, you will sometimes have to wait for groups to get off the tee on other holes before you can tee off, for safety reasons.
Also, despite the great signs and general openness of the course, this is a very un-FTF (First Timer Friendly) course. Due to the close proximity of all the holes, and the designers doing such a good job to hide (protect) the baskets, its very hard to know which pin you are supposed to shoot at. Many times, the numbered circles on top of the pins are faced away from the corresponding tee, and the faded red numbers on them are impossible to see until you get within 50 ft. After throwing at the wrong basket, and realizing my error, and rethrowing at a different wrong basket on hole 3, I had to walk almost every hole on the course before teeing off to find out just where the basket was. Despite the good sign showing that the "A" pin is a sharp left past that clump of trees, the baskets are so close together that that description fits at least three baskets on the left past those trees, and often the correct basket is the one that is hardest to see from the direction of the tee. It made it a frustrating round, since I had to keep scouting every hole before driving.
That being said, once I figured out where the pin was, the line was usually pretty obvious.
However, in an effort to protect the pins, this course ends up with many dumb holes. Specifically, the ones with candy cane-shaped fairways. Because the hole doubles back on itself, the best route to the pin is to thread the trees through the woods, yet this is not cleared out at all, leading me to believe that this isn't how you are supposed to play the hole. So, no matter how hard you hyzer the disc, you cant park the hole because it curves more than 90 degrees. For me, this basically meant a guarunteed par: Hard hyzer off the tee, long approach, gimmie putt.
Many of the holes on this course are like this, shaped in such a way that a 3 is very easy to achieve, but a birdie is next to impossible. As a result, I grew a bit bored with this constant lack of intrigue. Some holes are deuceable, but most are just easy 3s. Some of the longer holes take two good drives to get a 3 on, but all seem within reach.
I compare this to the course at Baraboo, where many holes are deuceable, yet also very easy to get a 4 on if you go in the trees.
On this course, its much easier to stay out of the trees, yet much harder to see how to get a 2 on some holes, regardless of how far you can throw. If I played this course ten times, I would still get pars almost always. If two comparable DGers played skins here, it would just come down to a game of sudden death, who is the first one to miss a short putt, every time. This is what a lack of risk-reward looks like.
Suffice it to say that I was not impressed with the overall design of this course, and didn't find it particularly interesting or challenging, even on holes I bogey'ed. This course is a decent rec course and an ok practice round for West. It's proximity to West is a plus, but if East were in a park by itself, its not high on my list of places I would rush back to.
The good tee pads and signage don't make up for the course being frustrating and dangerous to navigate. Some courses, like Papago park in Arizona, can be very un-FTF, confusing the first time you play them despite good signs and tee pads, but once you're familiar with the layout, they're great, well designed courses. However, this is not a GREAT course, IMO, but merely an ok, pretty one, not fantastic enough to justify the navigation challenges.
This course gets a 3.0 for condition, due to the cool alt pins, concrete tees and signage, but merely a 2.0 (passable) for navigation and course design. This is not to say you won't have fun here. Its not a BAD course, just shallow.
Other Thoughts: DISCLAIMER: Understand that I am biased toward more heavily-wooded courses, and I tend to mark courses down for being too open and not technical enough. If you are someone who prefers more open courses, then you would likely rate this course higher. You will probably enjoy the room this course gives you to "air it out", and the variety of the pin placements, but IMO the West course is a clearly better course, if you are up for the added challenge.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: Open fairways are good practice for driving. Hills add extra challenge (compared to Florida courses that I'm used to). Some difficult doglegs and long holes make what could be an easy course much more challenging. Variety in length and hole design. Several holes have a few options for best route to the basket, giving good opportunity for strategy. The slopes and openness allows the wind to affect the game some, which adds some difficulty.
Cons: The idea of open fairways with some tighter shots nearer the basket repeats itself a lot, which can be repetitive. Some weird shaped holes are impossible to deuce, so it removes some of the fun from those holes. I can't say there are any holes where a very technical, accurate DRIVE is required. It's not always obvious whether baskets are in the A or B locations. That plus mediocre signage means it's not an easy course to figure out for people unfamiliar with it.
Other Thoughts: I've played on this course since the mid '80s, although I don't get there often anymore because I moved to Florida. It's a beautiful course and well established over such a long time. But having played in a variety of courses over the years, I now realize that the design of Anna Page East isn't as technically challenging as it could be.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Sacrificae to the disc gods
Pros: Big arms will like this one; there are quite a few open, grip n' rip holes. Not much creativity, tho, until you get near the pin. That's where the plantlife comes to play. Pins are placed very carefully and trees will come into play on nearly all of the holes.
This course is in quite contrast from the other 18 holer at this park, Anna Page West. If your score was a shipwreck due to West, you very well could salvage your day on East.
You will love one and hate the other. Your score will probably reflect that.
This is a challenging course in the sense that the groundskeepers do a good job of mixing up the pins (in addition to mowing!). That makes things very interesting.
There is a fieldhouse at the park. Grills are scattered throughout, especially at West. If you need something at the last minute, Wal-Mart and some fast food places are a few miles down the road.
Overall, this is a very pretty park, and you will forget, quickly, that you're in IL's 3rd largest city. If you skip the fieldhouse and need to pee, there are plenty of trees.....
There is, on the opposite side of the road of holes 1 and 18, a practice basket. There is plenty of space to throw your brand new, untested driver, without worry of hitting anyone. I think every course should have a practice basket!
FYI - Bring a disc you do not mind losing/offering as a sacrifice to the disc golf gods! On holes 13 & 15 (please correct me if I'm wrong) you have the opportunity to throw your offering disc about 30 or 40 feet in the air at a faux target. The telephone pole it is placed upon clearly marks that it is an offering to the "Disc Gods", so this is purely voluntary. There are a few discs up there and I've overheard a few guys say aloud "...I'll bring my spikes and climb that thing!".
Might not be worthwhile to disrespect the disc golf gods....
Cons: The main problem I have with this course is that I have discovered, the hard way, that the signs are not always accurate. Either the signs have not been updated or hooligans come along and switch what hole it is (A or B) that is being played. It's rather embarrassing and frustrating to lead some Anna Page newbies on this course only to discover, at the last minute, that you were throwing at the completely wrong direction.
For the most part, you are walking in the open, so that can be rough when it's really hot. Bring plenty of refreshments!
Watch your disc! Quite a few holes require flight plans that hug treelines, and, if you're not careful, you can wind up trying to tomahawk it thru a bunch of pine trees, praying for double or triple bogie.
Other Thoughts: There are tournaments held here, so check the listings before you set out with your buddies. If you arrive at about 8 a.m., the place is to yourself (unless I'm there, too!).
If you're planning a DiscGolf Day, start here, then do Kraape Park in Freeport and then Sinnissippi in Sterling. If you play each course just once, that's 72 holes thrown in less than 2 hours of driving time.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: beautiful layout and challenges. multi pin locations. my 2nd favorite course to play.
Cons: the baskets are small
Other Thoughts: watch for the wild turkeys
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I agree with the reviews posted so far. Nice open fairways (if you consider this a pro), with plenty of length on numerous holes. Challenging basket locations on many holes - often you are looking at an open fairway with no clear basket in sight. Only upon walking up the fairway do you find that the basket is hiding in a thick grove of trees and bushes. This was frustrating for me the first time through, but once you know where the baskets are, its much more enjoyable. Very creative course.
Cons: Fairways are not well-defined, and like mentioned previously, can be confusing. I would recommend more clearly outlined signage (including which pin is in the ground), as well as more brightly colored baskets to help with this (they are old and faded in many cases).
HUC mentioned erosion, and I would agree that this a problem for this course. I would only add that it is especially a problem at the concrete tee-pads. I use a rather long run-up, and this is impossible on many of the tees due to there being an inch or greater lip where the soil had eroded away from the approach portion of the pad. This makes it nearly impossible to use any portion of the tee outside of the concrete.
I also had a hard time with the "U-turn" nature of some of the fairways. I'm driving north about 300', then all of sudden I need to use a hook-shot to the east and then south - back the direction I started - to get to the hole. What the?
Other Thoughts: Overall a good course, especially if you have played in at least once before. One of the final holes (I believe it's hole 15) features a basket on top of a 100' pole, about halfway down the center of the fairway. Nice obstacle (or goal?). Several discs were in it...
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Great course for beginners
Pros: This is the more beginner friendly course of the two courses in Anna page park. It is mostly open with little elevation change. It is hard to lose a disc because of the open layout and the open under story in the shule.
Anna page has great facilities including grills, a gazebo, bathrooms, water, and a sizable practice field. There are benches spread throughout the course and a portolet at hole 9.
The course is fairly long and there are multiple pin placements on every hole. There are concrete pads on every hole and tee signs to help you find your way. I love the "offerings to the disc golf gods" basket.
The layout offers a few par 4s when the pins are set up in the long positions which I like. There is a good mix of hyzers, anhyzers, and forced straight shots. Good lefty righty balance. The pins are usually well gaurded.
Cons: Playing this course there were a few things that bothered me. There were obvious safety concerns on this course. There are no less than 7 teepads that come within 60ft of a fairway. Hole 2 is a blind clown mouth that has the teepad of hole 3 right in the middle of it. There is a spot where there are 2 pins and a teepad within an 70ft diameter circle. So watch your head. It seems like they weren't given a lot of room or help and they tried to make the best course they could and they just pushed too far.
Although there is variability in the holes many have a very similar feel. For example there are 3 clown mouths for both pin placements. Part of this is that the fairways are pretty open and you get to throw pretty much anything that you want. Locals throw a ton of rollers on this course.
When the pins are set up short this course has a lot of "par 2.5s" were you can't reach it in one but you only get a four if you really screw up. It can be confusing to know which pin to throw to as there can be multiple pins in view from the end of the tee pad.
This course doesn't really do much for presentation. They haven't been working on erosion controls and now there is a lot of mud around the course. The baskets are home made or mach 1s and aren't really the greatest. A row of telephone poles in the back of the park comes into play on a few holes.
Other Thoughts: The open feel is great for beginners who may not have great control or throw that far. Even though the fairways are open the well protected baskets will challenge players of any skill level. I would only recommend playing if there aren't a lot of people on the course due to the risk of getting hit. The Anna Page complex does have two courses so you can pick which one to play based on how you feel like playing. There is a clear divide as to who plays which course. East is definitely more casual with more rec players with a disc in one hand and a paper bag in the other and West with the players with Quad shocks and under armour on.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 3 Not
One of my favs
Pros: - Posted: Disc Golfers Have Right of Way
- Nice consistent Cement teepads
- A and B pin placements
- Large mature trees
- Gentle rolling hills
- Open fairways
- Easy to navigate and great flow
- Practice basket
- Nice tee signs
- Picnic Benches every few holes
- Trash cans abundant
- Port-a-potie by hole 9 tee
- Kind and helpful locals
- Challenging fairways
- Every feature of the available land is well utilized
- Accuracy and placement are essential
- Several risk and reward holes
Cons: - The A and B markers at the tee signs arnt consistently indicating the right placement
- Missing the tight technical holes
Other Thoughts: Anna page has some fantastic disc golf. The East course is more open and requires well placed drives, the West course is much tighter and requires hitting the right gaps. Making a day out of playing both courses is well worth your time.
The east course has large open fairways that play around and through patches of woods and trees. Accuracy combined with distance is essential for a good score. Many of the baskets are tucked behind or into the woods. Keep your mental game in control, although the course is fun its easy to get frustrated.
Favorite hole #4 (position A) - There is essentially 2 lines to take towards the pins. Directly in front of you is a patch of trees and all along the left there is trees. The basket is tucked away down along the left in the trees about 260' away. The first line is a large hyzer that sneaks in along the backside of the patch of trees in front. The other line is a tight lil S curve down a narrow path through the tree pathc and the left tree line. There is a very risky straight line straight at the basket down a 2' wide gap. Not suggested, if you dont make it through its not uncommon to take a 4.
5 of 8 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 10 Not
Anna Page Park East
Pros: Check out my "West" review for more. I think the two are very similar. If you have a big arm, you should like this course.
Cons: Layout may be confusing
1 of 11 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.