11 Helpful / 2 Not
1st Course in Illinois
Pros: The park itself is very surprising. It is very shaded playing thru woods and some nice hills. There are also several nice open areas with scattered trees. Elevation comes into play on many holes and there are some unique areas. I posted a link to some nice photos in the other thoughts section.
This is a classic course established in 1979. It's the first course in Illinois. Although this course is a birdie fest and short it's still fun to play. It gets a ton of play from all skill level players.
You will learn how to throw a mid range and putter on this course. There is a ton of variety with long and short tees.
Tee signs are adequate with descent hole info and accurate distances.
The baskets were all replaced a few years ago and are Discraft Chainstars.
Cons: The course sits right off I80 so there is interstate noise for many holes.
It can be hard to navigate in a few areas.
The tee pads are limestone filled and have ruts in them. Some are better than others.
This course gets tons of play and there is an erosion issue in places. There are several tricky areas to hike thru so be careful. Down the hillside on #2 comes to mind and the green on #5. When it's muddy it can be dangerous in areas.
This course is very short. You don't get to rip too many drivers on this course.
11 of 13 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
The Mother of IL DG
Pros: I can't imagine this land being used for anything but disc golf.
About 1/3-1/2 the holes have back tees that add a MUCH different experience to the course...
#2 is the original thriller shot in IL... off the top of a ravine, across a creek, TO THE LEFT NOW (see cons)
Lots of elevation change
A variety of shots are required, despite the short length of holes...
Cons: For the first course in Illinois, it is showing its age (erosion).... the natural tees are at best, not a safety hazard... The lack of distance on most holes will be a turn off to pros.
For myself, personally, the 2007? redesign DESTROYED this course that Steady Ed himself created, particularly holes 2, 20, and 23...
Once again (I love Joliet's enthusiasm) the course tends to be crowded, if you don't tee off before 10am on weekends, forget it...
The course is terrible after any significant rain.... holes 2-9 play in the bottom of a ravine., be prepared to tee off with a few pounds of mud on each foot...
Other Thoughts: I've been putting this review off for a while, because I really wanted to try and get it right, despite all of my cons, this course is a MUST PLAY if you're in the area.
Having said that, to be honest, the first time I played here, I was like "really, this is the course you all talk about" (1st ever wooded course) it took another round or 2 to realize how great it really is/was (damn redesign)...
#2 is an amazing shot, I could throw rocs all day!
#5 a mid seemingly into the middle of a tree, the basket is actually elevated, and fairly protected by branches...
#10. A very fun/tough L>R hole over a road, which is LOWER than the ground (ie it ALMOST caught green, so you just get the stroke)
#12 L>R shot through a gully, uphill to the basket.... love it...
#16 as much as I don't like the design, it's a fun hole, down a hill, schule/trees the entire time... close your eyes and throw it...
17-22 are actually the bland part of the course, parkland, little elevation change...
23 is a tight shot though the woods/ravine, it used to be over the ravine, but I digress...
EROSION WARNING!!!! Even when dry, watch your footing! There are many untamed slopes and creeks on the course (part of the charm til you fall in!)
I'm giving this a 4.0 because it's a must play.... THIS MAY CHANGE!!!
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: This course has a great design, it makes you feel as if you're playing an epic adventure! Plenty of variation, it's a beautiful park.
Cons: Some litter here and there, but you can't police the world at all times I guess. Sometimes the tee for the next hole is a little hard to locate. If you follow the map for hole 8, you won't find hole 9.
Other Thoughts: If they were to update the park just a little, make it a little more clear as to where you need to go for the next tee, this park would have been a 4.5 for me. If you haven't played this course before make sure your first time is with someone who has. Or, be ready to ask the people playing behind you where the next hole is. :)
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 5 Not
I drive an hour to go back
Pros: This is one of the nicest courses in northern Illinois. Elevation changes, woods and a creek play throughout the course. Evan though it is on I-80 I have seen foxes and wildlife on the course. The course is not overly long, but appropriately challenging.
Cons: The tees are dirt mostly and quite poor. The signs need some help and navigating the first time might be hard.
Other Thoughts: Give it a try. I have met some great people on the course.
1 of 6 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Memorable for sure
Pros: Balance! Wooded holes, great use of ravine for uphill, downhill, and half-pipe type holes. True water hazards that actually come into play. Long holes, short holes, tight woods, open rippers, etc. This course was a LOT of fun to play. More than 18 holes!
Cons: Dirt tees are okay in general, but the amount of use has them very rutted. The city setting, traffic, and noise really takes away from a great relaxing experience. The water hazards offer a great balance that I seek, but man you do NOT want to be in them - talk about city sewar runoff!!! I seem to remember many signs busted, full of graffitti, and in poor shape. The baskets were abused, but caught discs just fine.
Other Thoughts: I played this course quite a while ago, so forgive me if things have changed. However, the course is VERY impressive, enough so to make me want to review it. I played this course along with 10 other courses on a 2 day cannonball run to Indianapolis. In regards to my rating system this one scores right up there as a 4.5. I want to knock it down .5 due to the "IT" factor missing because it is in a busy, city park with a freeway bordering much of the course. Too much noise to truly lose yourself. So, you get more than 18 holes, making it a worthwhile trip from afar (could score a 5). All the balanced design elements are nearly there (tight woods, open rippers, uphill, downhill, right, left, etc). Only one huge downhill bomber hole (like throwing off a hill 500'+ is missing. So, it only misses a 5 by missing this one design element. It loses another half point because it's stuck in the city (I know, too bad). But it is a VERY solid 4, probably the best of all courses I've rated a 4. All in all, it is definitely worth a round, even for a travelling player.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
A- = Almost As Good As It Gets
Pros: What I personally like and how this course stacks up in my list of 18 (and more) hole courses:
1) Holes with good risk/reward. Fair, but harsh punishment for bad decisions or execution. == B
(About 1/4 of the holes have a decent amount of trouble that might get you a bogey with a poor drive. Other than that, it is a relatively tame course in the punishment department.)
2) Holes that have rewarding birdie opportunities for me. I throw 300' accurately, 360' max. == B+
(About half the holes fit the bill. The others are still fun. It helps that there are 24 holes since that yields 12 good holes that float my boat is a great way.)
3) More wooded than open - lots of variety of shots required caused by hole shape and topography == A
(Lots of shots required to score well here. Great variety of open/tight, right/left, up/down/flat and long/short. This is the biggest strength of this course IMO.)
4) Natural beauty (Appalachian beauty preferred) and seclusion. == B (Pretty park with overall decent seclusion from society in many parts of the park. Being right next to an interstate is a downer in that there is no peace and quite.)
5) Bonus points for multi-throw holes with defined landing zones, good risk/reward and multiple options to play them. == N/A
Other Thoughts: It's all about feeding the addiction, so I ranked this course subjectively based on my own "personal addiction factor". The grades above tell how well the course will draw me back to itself again and again and again. Since I have played a decent number of courses (149 18-hole, 91 9-hole as of late 2009), my hope is that players/explorers who have similar addiction tastes will find my ratings list helpful as they choose courses to play and explore.
I fully expect others with different tastes/philosophies to disagree with me....that's the fun of things here. See my profile for my rating philosophy.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
One of Northern Illinois's Better Courses
Pros: -great layout (minus hole 8)
-phenomenal signature holes off large hills
-great variety in holes. wooded/open, elevation/flat, short/long. it's got it all.
-oldest course in IL
-Large, majestic oaks. very nice scenery
-Designed by Steady Eddie himself
Cons: -very few benches
-dirt tee boxes
-FEELS like the oldest course in IL
-layout on hole 8 was an oversight in design
Other Thoughts: I absolutely LOVE this course. worth the drive for anyone wanting to get a great day of discing in. I used to say that this was the best course within a few hours, but then they put in Highland a few miles away. Still a can't miss and with all of the great courses in the area, you could easily spend a weekend in the Joliet area hitting up 5-6 different cool courses.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Old School Fun Disc Golf
Pros: I really enjoyed what this course had to offer. There was much variety with long, short, left, right, open, and wooded holes.
It allows you to use all of your throws to get to the holes and the people were very helpful who were playing on the course.
It was a nice park and we didn't have to wait long for most of the course though there seemed to be many people there.
Signs and baskets were just okay and tee pads were dirt.
Feels like the oldest course in Illinois, but that also makes it more fun to play.
24 holes and a cool disc golf experience.
Cons: It was kind of hard to navigate through the first time but the tee signs point in direction of next tee off so look for that.
I am not a fan of dirt tee pads as they are kind of uneven and have probably gotten worse.
Most holes can be short as this was made in the 70s, but it still a great course to play.
Other Thoughts: Take the time to come out to this course as it is one of the better ones in the Chicago land area. Also go to highland park which is within 5 miles as it is a better and more challenging course.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
There are hills in Chicago?
Pros: The course plays through a hilly park that is mostly heavily wooded with streams and abandoned roads running throughout. Nearly all of the course is disc golf only, so there are only a couple holes where you ever have to worry about other park users. The elevation is used really well to make fun and interesting holes, especially hole 2 off the top of a bluff over a creek.
There are a couple holes that are more open, a handful of holes in scattered mature trees, and the rest in woods. This makes for nice variety throughout the round, and provides different challenges. The course never gets repetitive, with each hole seeming new and different. The design is fantastic, making the most of the foliage and elevation changes available. There is just about every kind of hole you could want here, so bring all your shots if you want to get those birdies.
Half the holes have two tees, making for some different challenges and looks at the baskets. There are signs on all the short tees, though some aren't in great shape. The tees are easy to find with red or white markers in the ground delineating the front of each tee box.
Cons: The first time you play this course, there are some confusing spots. The holes do a nice job of not overlapping or playing too close to one another, but to make this happen there are some long walks that aren't always obvious. The worst one was from hole 8 to hole 9, where you had to walk all the way back down the fairway to get to the next tee.
The tees are mostly dirt, and can get really rutted and rough. If there has been rain recently, the tees in the low parts of the park near the creek can be pretty muddy and slick. Some of the signs are falling apart and difficult to read, so your first time out you'll have to scout some of the holes.
Other Thoughts: Once you get past the navigation issues, this is a really fun course. There are all kinds of fun and unique holes, and the course stays fun and interesting throughout. Especially with Highland Park nearby, this course and the Joliet area are worth the drive to play.
This course is playable for beginners, with a number of shorter holes. There are, however, many opportunities to lose discs in dense underbrush, so beginners could get frustrated with that. More experienced players will have lots of birdie opportunities, but will find the course fun and interesting, and more challenging from the longer tees.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: old school course with many fun holes playing throughout a small creek valley. Many holes with elevation changes and varies from open to dense woods and everything in between.
good variety of shots, left, right, short, long, up, down
24 holes with multiple tees for each
creek comes into play on multiple holes
Cons: some tees difficult to find if not familiar with course,
becomes very muddy after rain,
shallow. older baskets
Other Thoughts: This is one of Illinois oldest courses and was designed by Steady Ed himself, which makes the course with the trip alone.
Hole 2 is a great shot; throwing from the top of a cliff down over the stream to a grassy green below,
Hole 11 is a long 400+ ft bomber with the fairway narrowing all the way down the hole to a penninsula where the basket is located and a drop off with the stream to the left.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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