7 Helpful / 1 Not
Short and not-so-sweet
Pros: Note: I am going to be reviewing this as an 18 hole course since they have had all 18 baskets installed for over half a year now.
-large concrete tees on half of the course, the other half has natural tees that are in good condition for the most part
-lots of birdie ops
-best beginner course in Austin as most of the holes are around 200'-250'. There's 3 or 4 holes that are right around 300' give or take, and there's a couple shorter than 200'.
-impossible to lose a disc as the rough, which only exists on a handful of holes, is quite forgiving.
-can be played in under an hour when the traffic is low, and really, the only time I ever play this course is when I don't have time to play any other.
-It's located next to Barton Springs pool, which has nothing to do with disc golf, but is probably the best thing about this course.
Cons: -too short; this is a course where you just never have the opportunity to really let loose and bomb one.
-too easy. Whether it's short or long (most being the former), it's just plain easy, emphasis on the plain...and the easy. There's no tunnel shots with most of the holes having only 1 or 2 trees you need to avoid to get an easy birdie.
-It's a boring course with no risk/reward type scenarios. No risk--all reward.
-$3 parking fee during the weekend makes this course even less appealing, although you can park under the Mopac bridge or on the north side of Barton Springs Rd., both of which are only a short walk away from the course.
Other Thoughts: I would not recommend this course to anyone other than someone just learning the game or if you only have an hour to play.
There's a sign at the beginning of the course that says no alcohol allowed, which is weird because every other park/DGC in Austin allows you to drink beer as long as it's in cans.
It can actually get pretty crowded with beginners (i.e. very slow players in large groups) during the weekend so an expected 1 hour round can turn into a 2 hour round if you catch it at the wrong time.
If you're an experienced disc golfer there's really no reason to play this course considering every other Austin area course is better and more challenging.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Like Eating a Burnt Filet Mignon – Palatable but not Very Good.
People who know nothing about the course will be happy to find 18 holes on a relatively flat and easy terrain. New players will also like that this is a great course to learn on - with few obstacles and no water. It reminded me of my home course in Houston, Anges Moffit Park
- not hard, fairly popular, and centrally located. The other two pluses are that this is a big park with the springs and botanic gardens, so family members looking for something other disc golf can be fully entertained for the day, and the course is located near the iconic Pease Park
if you still need a disc golf fix.
BEST HOLE/S: #4 South; #6 South
Cons: Nine holes? Two nine holes courses? One 18 course? Zilker seems to have an identity problem and suffers from some false advertisement. Currently, a new to the course player can show up to expect 18 holes of golf with a definite distinction between each nine. Rumor mill is that the 18 pins are now going to be permanent, but take this information with a grain of salt, since it looks like it may be some time before the dust settles and people figure out the long term status.
Other major cons include no real tee markers showing the hole number or distance. The "South" course currently has yellow markers in the ground indicating the tee box, and the "North" course has the world's largest concrete pads to help to see where to throw. The north course has no numbers, so we jumped on a hole #2 (according to the map under links & files) near the road, since that made the most sense and the concrete tees line up well to show you your way. This way we could easily play 18 holes without backtracking to much because the north course hole #1 ends back at the parking lot where started the south course. The north course is also wide open, so you'll be able to scan the area easily.
The south course has some flow issues, so print the map, but note that you backtrack from hole #2 to hole #3, and take the left path through the trees after hole #4. Fortunately these pins have numbers, so it makes it harder to foul things up. Besides that - both nine hole courses are fairly straightforward with little challenge. Basically it's a good flat place to learn the game then have a dip in Barton Springs when you're finished.
Last issue is parking. Play on a week day or pay three bucks on the weekend? Believe me, unless you're hitting the springs as well, this course isn't worth three bucks. I second the other reviews that suggest you park under Mopac at the exit near course and walk across the frontage road. It's almost as close as any parking you would have to pay for anyway.
WORST HOLE/S: #6 North
Zilker Park's silly layout and the determination to have two nine hole courses is silly to me. Take a few minutes, do some renumbering, and just call the thing an 18 hole course. That will make it a bigger draw anyway. Having played East Metro Park
and Circle C at Slaughter Creek
before finishing the day here was a mistake. Next time I would just drive the extra few miles to Pease Park and hit a much better 18. I think the thing that frustrates me most is when a place with great potential doesn't meet it.
Zilker Park isn't horrible, and being the first ever Houck designed course over 20 years ago - you've have to give some props. However, with so many newer good courses in the area with time and love devoted to them, one just wonders when one of the most popular parks in the city will get it's due again.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Nice clean park with a good variety of shots. No water. Two different 9 holes, not always both in place. Front 9 more open and longer. Back 9 is more wooded and shorter.
Cons: None really to speak of.
Other Thoughts: I liked this course, I can't wait to go back.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Good open course
Nice basket placement
Nice area to play in
Close to Barton Springs, nice to take a dip after 18
Cons: A little hot in the middle of the summer (but its Texas so ya)
Sometimes there can be too many human obsticles
Other Thoughts: I haven't played this course in about 12 years so my review might not be too valid since I'm sure its changed. This was my first DG course and it has a speacial place in my heart :)
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Downtown for a quick round
Pros: Until I put a midrange in my bag I hated this course. I just found the second shot to be between putter and driver for me. Now I drive most holes with my midrange and my attitude about the course has changed drastically.
As stated before this is really two 9 hole courses but sometimes all 18 pins are there. Both North and South courses offer different shot selections, with North being a bit more open and longer for the most part and the South being a bit tighter but shorter on average. Together as 18 holes it's a nice round. Or just play the 9 twice and you're good as well.
This is the course I would recommend to beginners in Austin...or if you've been playing a while and want to introduce someone else to the sport. I'd say it's a little less crowded than Pease and not as frustrating for a new player. They won't have to worry about throwing discs in the water. And you can work on your midrange and short game. Win-Win.
Once you get over the relatively standardized difference of the hole lengths this course is exceptionally designed for such a small area. Even though the North side is open, it does require a lot of different shot types. Left and right turns, long low shots (or rollers,) uphill, downhill, skip shots and a nice long drive. The South side will make you place your up shots, maneuver around trees, forehand or anhyzer, throw off a hill, long shot under some trees, a tight tree hole and a putt drive. All in all, it has a bit of everything.
I have a newfound love of this course and it makes a nice companion course for Pease...or if Pease is too crowded it's a 5 minute drive and usually not as bad.
Cons: Sometimes the course gets crowded and there are a lot of new players here. You may be looking forward to playing one side and the other is up. The North side has you playing next to a busy road at times and sometimes you'll have to deal with a honk or two.
The only real cons are lack of signs, dirt tee pads on the South side can get muddy. Only 9 holes at times. And doesn't really let you get out there and throw huge bombs as much as I'd like.
Other Thoughts: Park under the overpass on the way down to avoid the park fee on the weekends. Really makes a for a nice quick round or a secondary round if you've just played somewhere else and just need a bit more to top off your disc golfing for the day.
A great place to visit for Ice Bowl early in the year if you don't want to play in the snows up north. lol
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: You Can't really loose a disc on this course unless you get it stuck in a tree. It is a quick play and not usually to busy.
Cons: Short, only 9 holes at a time. Only half the course has cement tees.
Other Thoughts: Bartons Springs is right there if you want to jump in after a round. NICE
0 of 6 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Cement tee pads. Central location. Plays quick.
Cons: 18 hole course with only 9 baskets.
Other Thoughts: Course is 18 holes, but the city will only allow 9 holes in the ground at any one time. Baskets are moved back and forth between the North and South side of the course, to give the land a chance to 'repair' itself, and cut back on erosion.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Easily accessible, good parking situation. Well designed courses (north and south). Although on the shorter side, holes require and reward technical throws. Lots of ace runs on both courses, more on the South. Couple longer holes thrown in to keep the courses interesting. Either course can be played in under an hour unless extremely crowded. Early morning rounds can be played without seeing another player on the course.
Cons: Short course overall. South course needs concrete tee boxes. Course maps/signage would help new players. Lots of trash cans needed throughout the course so beer cans don't end up in the trees.
Other Thoughts: Great course for working on different shots. Hard to lose a disc. Lots of ace runs. Would like to see 9 baskets added and see both courses opened to make a killer little 18 hole gem in Austin's best park.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Fun practice courses
Pros: North course: Well groomed. Concrete tee pads. It is quick and easy to get around the course.Hard to lose a disc.
South Course: Good shot variety, lots of ace runs, great course for midrange work. Very difficult to lose a disc here. Nice and quick for when you need to get in a quick round.
Cons: North course: Kind of wide open, especially if you like tunnel shots. Pretty short. No map of the course at the bulletin board.
South course: Dirt tee pads that aren't marked very well. No course map or signs on the course. Some tees are really close to the baskets of other holes, so if its busy you have to watch yourself.
Other Thoughts: I played the North course and found it to be a fun little course. I did get turned around my first time out as the tee boxes aren't marked and there is no map at the bulletin board, but once I figured it out everything was great. The course is pretty easy and it is short, so most holes you can either drive or have a short second pitch to the basket. Needless to say birdies are common.
South course: You have to take this course for what it is. It is very short, in fact if you can throw 300 you can reach almost every hole on the course. Most are around 225-250' with hole 7 at around 380'. I like this course for practicing my midrange shots as you can play the whole course with a midrange and a putter. It really is a pretty good course- its in good shape, has open and wooded holes, and has some minor elevation changes.
Of the two courses the North course is a little more challenging and longer, but the South course is a little more dense and actually has the more technical shot variety.It is just short.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: If you're looking for a super quick playing course then this is the one.
There are two nine hole courses here. Sometimes only one side has baskets and sometimes both sides have baskets. You never know until you show up to play.
The North 9 is moderately wooded with huge trees making it a beautiful and shady course. High canopies, and no brush means it's not as frustrating as most moderately wooded courses.
The South 9 is not as park like and has some holes with cedar and brush lining the fairways to punish the errant shot. It is a little more frustrating to the beginner but has shorter distances.
The large concrete teepads on the North side are rare around Austin and very nice.
The South 9 has dirt tee boxes.
Each side has it's own bulletin board with a picnic table where groups will wait to meet up with each other. You will see some real Austin "characters" around these bulletin boards.
Cons: It's close to downtown and very popular so it's always crowded even at mid-week, mid-day.
Finding the course can be confusing because the two courses are seperated by a park road and have seperate parking areas. If both sides are open you can just park anywhere and follow the masses to which ever side you want. The first time you play you will probably park on the wrong side and have a long walk to hole #1 on the other side but after that you will know where to park.
The zigzag flow of the North side is hard to follow the first time, even with the printable map because the course is poorly marked.
The South 9 is also poorly marked but I had no trouble following the flow by looking for worn paths leading away from each basket.
Other Thoughts: The North 9 by itself would get a 3.5 disc rating from me because it is prettier, has concrete tee pads, has larger trees and is more park like. I would give the South 9 a 2.5 disc rating. So together I give the course a 3.0 disc rating.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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