Bambi Meets Goliath
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -A couple of signature holes
-Some fun shots here and there
-Lots of other activities for non-players
-Rec players could play a few holes and skip the back
-'Big Arm Athletes' will feel the burn eventually.
-Great scenery with a fun ride up n back down.
-Easy ticketing and orientation.
Cons: -Dirt tee-pads and not well defined or cleared.
-LOTS of families (KIDS!) near -holes.
-Long climb back UP on the back.
-Hardly 'Free'. Pay over 20 bucks or hike most of the day.
-Has that 'This is just another activity/ Temp course' feel to it
Other Thoughts: NOTE: Though I only played this course twice, there has not been a 'Helpful' review of the new course, which has been changed enough that the course description should be updated btw. I'll try to get this right:
After playing Crested Butte, Snowmass (and Angel Fire in Northern New Mexico) this summer, I guess I am getting used to what the new trend in over-priced, lift served Ski Area Disc Golf is all about: Pay a lot each time you visit. Play a lot of safe, shorter holes. But at the same time, have lots of non-players right there on the course. Yeeeesh.
I gave Aspen the highest rating of the bunch, because at least there are some great shots and you do eventually get 'Far from the Maddening Crowds'.
Catch the Gondola right at the Main Base in the center of town. Take a right off the gondola to the Ski Lift Shack, unless you want to check out the Dizzying Disneyland of family activities all around you at the top. Be warned: you'll be throwing around a lot of these folks so have your putters and your patience ready. The Shack has a basic scorecard/map. I loved the loaner disc box with Rec Friendly discs. Leave em some in better shape if you can.
The first few holes are a short easy circuit that clearly is the Rec 9. However, hole 3 is a beautiful little downhill/ sidehill tunnel shot that had me throwing all my putters.
Things kick into gear on the signature hole #11. An awesome right to left sweeping shot where a cliff looms up over the entire left side approach. Go right? Bye-bye. Go long? At least you might find it on the expert ski run beyond. But don't Chicken Out short either. A great hole.
From there, 'Goliath' pretty well stomps on 'Bambi' for good. Instead of playing all the way down with a long hike at the end like Snowmass and Crested Butte, Aspen takes a steep clockwise loop that had even this mountain player gasping. Several holes should be par 4s or even 5s.
There is room for debate about whether this loop is a good way to balance the easy front or just too much. Three of the uphill holes were too steep for my 'Mountain Tested Forehand' and I even needed to use my hands for balance a couple times. The course could have been more 'Balanced' too, but with all the early birdies, I shot 2 and 3 up, which is about right for this Older Pro.
With a long lunch, my two rounds took nearly the whole 10am to 430pm time window for the Gondola. Lightening! delayed the last ride down, but it's a pretty dang cool deck you get to wait on, and people were enjoying the storm.
Since I was in town and love to bag me some new course, this was well worth it. But others might not even drive the hour up from I-70, unless you wanted to enjoy some of the rest of what Aspen has to offer.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Kiss the Sky
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: The view from this course is breathtaking. You get to play a course that is on top of a mountain. There are other things to do while you are up there.
Cons: The T boxes could be better but remember, this is also a ski mountain. I would not expect them to pour concrete pads for a free course. The 22 dollar fee for the gondola was worth it to me.
Other Thoughts: Yes there was a lot of hiking on this course. It is on the side of a mountain. This is one of the reasons I wanted to play it. Watch out for hole 11, if you bank right it is not forgiving. The back nine are the hardest to traverse. If you didn't want to play the course, there are other activities you can do. I wish I would have brought my bike and rode back down the path to the bottom. I will play it again next year if I get the chance.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 4 Not
Not for me.
Pros: Beautiful scenery.
Cons: Crappy pads. Poor design on some holes- tee pads in the middle of other fairways! It's more like hiking than playing disc. 20 bucks for the lift ticket.
Other Thoughts: This course would be okay to play if you were already at the top of the mountain looking for something to do. A buddy of mine and I drove 3 hours to get there and spent the 3 hour drive home being p*ssed off about the crappy course! Don't make a special trip to Kiss the Sky, but if you're already there... check it out.
3 of 7 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Top of the World
Pros: Another Epic Colorado Mountain Course. On top of Aspen and billed the highest course in the world. Many amazing golf shots. Definite mountain terrain - dont go there expecting it to be easy. This is where the condition of the player is part of their ability to play well. If you are not in good shape go somewhere else. If you are fit, you will be rewarded with an amazing course with amazing views. The Elk Mountain Range is breathtaking and you are looking across at them not up at them.
Hole 11 is called Kiss it Goodbye and it is truly a test of touch - not that its short, but you gotta do it just right. During Kiss the Sky tournament, the EXTREME holes are added and the BIG "Kiss it Goodbye" is in effect.
Last time I played it I took an Altimeter and 200 ft tape. It is 790 ft. Long and drops 255 vertical feet. Cliff on left and protection on right. look for it on Videos from Johnny B (Supershots, Hotshots, and Cool Shots)
When you see this hole, your going to want to play here....Guaranteed
Cons: Tee Pads are terrible. no effort is ever put into making them like in Steamboat Springs. Rocky and very uneven.
Other Thoughts: For the hearty Soul with a high clearance vehicle, it is legal to drive up the service road on the face of Aspen Ski Area. This is an awesome journey all by itself. Pair it with the opportunity to access the course before and after the mountain is open and you will have the place to yourself. The Gondola turns off at 4 pm and that means that you have the course and the mountain to yourself all the way through dark. At 11,000+ ft. that means 9:30pm. After playing, drive out the ridgeline and get all the free camping you can handle. You will see why Aspen is the real deal.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 2 Not
Kiss the Sky...Kiss my A$$
Pros: You can play with the Resort's beat up discs for free. The view is pretty dramatic. Some cool holes. I parked the Kiss the Sky shot but missed the putt. Bummer. A few very long downhill drives. A couple punishing uphill shots.
Cons: I drove to Aspen to play this course. Ouch! Expensive gondola ride. Expensive Food. Where you are met by a lot of foot traffic. Tourists, kids, people enjoying the splendor of the top of the mountain and your some weirdo throwing plastic around and through the crowds. Not a big fan of the lets give the sport exposure idea because in these public places I found myself irritated and angry and the public angy and confused with me. Not sure that promotes the game. The course despite its location is pretty bland except for maybe 6 holes. The others are more filler or slapped up for the season. Boring essentially. When the course is boring and your annoyed by spending money and so much traffic. Bad Karma. Also you never feel like your playing on a disc golf course. With the gondola and the ski lifts interrupting the sky so often. I was more than ready to finish my round. By the way I was really trying to enjoy myself.
Other Thoughts: The mountain is nice but like many wonders of nature too many tourists spoiling the moment. Imagine any of our wonders with a disc golf course present. Niagra Falls, Grand Canyon, Badlands, Banff and now imagine the course is built where all the tourists congregate. Instant buzzkill. If the course was maybe a short hike from the gondola lift and played through some woods and then used some of the slopes rather than insisting on beginning and ending at the lifts I might have been less disappointed. The temporary nature of the course makes it seem haphazzard, like an afterthought. I like courses that are a few people's labor of love and not some corporate moneymaker.
12 of 14 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Aspen Mountain has wonderful views of the rockies. Nice and Challanging. You really have to work for a good score
Cons: With the high elevation I had trouble catching my breath. The ground is very rough and rocky. Be in good physical shape for the back half. Its a bummer having to pay for a lift ticket but worth it. The food served at the lodge is very expensive.
Other Thoughts: Wear hiking shoes, bring water and walking stick and bring more the one disc.
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Back Nine Workout
Pros: Great views. There are a few signature holes that are very enjoyable, including a few downhill blasts. The first place that I have ever played that let you borrow, free of charge, as many discs as you wanted. You just wrote down how many you took, how many you returned, and where you lost any along the way. Oh... and aspen is chalk full of beautiful people.
Cons: $23 lift ticket to the top, where you discover this dirt road that comes from somewhere. It'd be nice if someone who knew how to use it would post it on here. Back nine has a lot of steep, steep, uphill shots. This course lacks a little creativity. All the hiking uphill will work you hard.
Other Thoughts: I didn't have any problems with kids running around. Course was clear the entire time. Everyone failed to mention before that this is the Highest Disc Golf Course in the WORLD!
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Great view at the top. A couple insane downhill blasts that you can sit down and read while you wait for your shot to drop. You can also say you played Aspen...
Cons: Those kids really pissed me off. I wanted to take a Wraith upside a couple temples. Between the rigorous landscape, the thin air, and the heat, I was plenty worked, I didn't need some 10 year old asshole running around in front of me playing imaginary moving target. Also, the great downhill shots are followed by 500 footers that are right back up the hill you came down. You get so tired from hiking you're willing to throw ten 50 foot sidearmers just to get up the bullshit hill.
Other Thoughts: Good call on the Gondola. Nice view but 20 bucks? The locals were trying to draw us up a way to drive up there which would be the way to go if you regularly played the course but it seemed too much a hassle for a one-time shot.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 1 Not
seems hard to resist
Pros: If you are playing Aspen you are experiencing quite a view as you are on top of a mountain. The gondola ride to the top is long, and full of wonder. The ride down is long and relaxing after a grueling round. There are a few signature holes, one next to a cliff, and one that has a monster drop and is over 1500 feet long. You get massive exercise playing this course. Your friends will love the pictures you get. There are maps available at the top and there are signs throughout the course.
Cons: When I played there were kids running all over the place unaware of the course. What goes down must come back up, on foot. Hiking up a ski slope beats you up a little. If you think walking up a steep but wide open jeep trail would make a good back nine than this is the place for you. Make sure you bring water, maybe even a lunch and an Asprin for the elevation. The gondola fee of $20+ is a little steep considering that there is really nothing up there in the summer time. Its even expensive to park your car in Aspen. The astonishing scenery does not equate to a disc golf round with a high fun factor. I did loose a disc on the "kiss it goodbye" hole and I just climbed down like 70 feet and retrieved it. The tee areas are dirt, uneven and sometimes rocky, most of the fairways are wide open in the middle of the slopes. I know the whole idea seems hard to resist, and I know you're going anyways, but you will feel suckered, and you can't say I didn't warn you.
Other Thoughts: Aspen should scrap the course on top of the mountain thing and be more like Steamboat who put their course on the base of a side mountain. Both Aspen and Steamboat are a lot of work, but the payoff in Aspen just didn't feel worth it. Aspen might also be improved by getting into the woods a little bit more. I get the feeling that people want to remember a breath taking trip to the top of a mountain, which is ok because that is what you will get here. The vistas fall short of making up for a disc golf round that has a relatively low fun-factor. The local area disc golfers I met the day before tried to draw me a map to the top, and didn't have much praise for the course. I should have taken that as a hint.
If you need to stock up on discs before heading up, there is some selection at the Miners Building (a hardware store) on Main St. You might even be able to get the 411 about driving up the road instead of having to take the gondola.
14 of 15 people found this review helpful.
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