Florissant, MO

Sioux Passage - Briscoe Woods

3.075(based on 14 reviews)
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14 0
Tyler V
Gold level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 16.9 years 147 played 98 reviews
3.00 star(s)

A Technical Course With Woods, Hills, and Fields For Intermediate And Advanced Players To Enjoy

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:Feb 27, 2024 Played the course:once

Pros:

Sioux Passage – Briscoe Woods is a technical, recreational 18-hole course that has a mix of woods, fields, and hills. This 2014 installation is the scrappy little brother to the original Sioux Passage course across the park's main road and makes for a shorter but more technical round than the long, open OG course.

Location of Sioux Passage Park is at the northern most point of Florissant, Missouri, right up against the Missouri River. The park is located on Old Jamestown Road, and you'll be directed to the park via Vaile Ave from the south or Old Jamestown Road if you're coming from Illinois. Once you enter the park, take the first right turn, and then you'll see parking next to hole 1 and the black practice basket. If you want to make a day out of golfing, the original course is just located further up the main road. Other than that, Yu can go south for north county courses like Dunegant, Hudson, or White Birch, or cross the river for the collection in Alton and Godfrey. There's nothing but rural feeling subdivisions around the park, so get your snacks ahead of time.

Park Amenities are pretty robust in this expansive park. In addition to the two disc golf courses, you can find two playgrounds, trails, horseback riding, tennis courts by hole one, fishing, basketball, cross country courses, and a boat ramp. There are also some camp sites, and the park is also designated for winter outdoor sports. There' also fishing along the river in the back of the park. The closest bathroom is across the street from hole 15, though there's a year-round bathroom at the shelter across from the start of the original 18-hole course.

Course Equipment is coming along nicely and is a continuing project this year for Briscoe Woods. Most tee pads are concrete, with just a couple that still need to be upgraded. The baskets on both Sioux Passage courses have been upgraded as of last year to Black Hole Portal Version 2 baskets, with Briscoe's being Orange and the OG course being Yellow. Each course also has a black practice basket, both of which have plenty of space to practice approaches and longer putts. The signage is due to be upgraded soon at Briscoe, but what's in place as of this review's writing is alright, with pars, hole graphics, pin placements, and next tee directions. Overall, this course should be up to par with the original course hopefully by the end of 2024.

Course Design at Briscoe gives you a bit of everything, with the start of the course having tight wooded lines, and the back half being primarily more open shots along the hills and fields in the front half of the park. While the original course is very open and long, Briscoe will require more technical ability, and will also challenge you to throw both right and left turning shots. Overall, this is a course that will require multiple shot shapes and will punish you a bit if you aren't on your game with putting your disc where you want it.

Elevation is prominent on this course, with plenty of hills being present throughout the park. Holes 1 and 8 come to mind as hole that have open fairways but play downhill, with both greens having some elevation around that can result in rollaways. Holes like 3 and 7 also play uphill in addition to having wonky fairway shapes, and 11 is a steep but open uphill shot. Holes 12 and 14, while vastly different in distance, have similar feels wit downhill elevation, which can be tricky when gauging how hard to throw your approach. Hole 9 is a very abrupt uphill shot, and can leave you with a tough upshot if you don't make the hill or hit a tree in the fairway.

Shot-Shaping is also crucial at Briscoe, with more fairways requiring a particular shot shape than not. Holes 2, 3, 5, arguably 7, and 13 all turn to the right and will favor RH forehand shots off the tee. Meanwhile, holes 4 (depending on the pin position), and 17 both require RH backhand or similar shot shapes off the tee. The rest of the holes are either straight or leave you options, but many will require straight shots or good accuracy off the tee, such as 1, 7, and 15. Overall, I think this is definitely one of the more RH forehand friendly courses in St. Louis, and it was fun to practice playing with that shot more as someone who throws forehands about as much as James Conrad.

Distances are pretty attainable for a variety of plyers, with this course being around 6,500 feet long across 18 holes, playing 1,000 feet or shorter than the original 18-hole course. Most holes are between 225 and 400 feet, with holes 13 (555ft), 14 (562), and 16 (560) being outliers, though all three are par 4s. The first half of the course is very short relative to par, with hole 5 being only around 210ft long. The back half of the course is more open except for 17, and will play longer as well, a nice change from the more intricate front 9 once your arm is warmed up.

Difficulty Level is towards intermediate and advanced, as anyone who can't reliably hit a line with their drive is going to really struggle through the front 9. Even when you get through the first half of the course, you still have prairie grass, hills, and longer shots, all of which can give newer players trouble. While easier in some ways to the original course, this course has it's own unique challenges to its older brother, and newer players should probably get experience on easier nearby courses like White Birch and Gordon Moore before giving the Sioux Passage courses a go.

Highlights – Hole 8 is a very fun open shot that plays downhill to a relatively open green, being a nice opportunity to rip a fairway with less risk involved. Similarly, hole 12 is downhill and has multiple fun lines to the basket, with anything from a straight putter shot to a stalling hyzer over the trees to the right being viable options. Hole 16 might be the most complete hole n terms of challenges, with a long open field shot to a gap in the woods, followed by a technical upshot to the green.

Cons:

Bugs – Time for ol' Tyler to be a little vulnerable. I hate wasps with a seething passion, as well as large bugs that continuously buzz your head without you being able to tell what it is. This was my third attempt playing this course, as I had too much trouble the first two times with bugs to make it through more than 4 holes. Is this a me problem? Absolutely. That being said, I have played a lot of rounds since start disc golf and have been on 147 courses so far, and I have never had this issue until I tried play Briscoe. This is a course I plan to primarily play in the winter or with a thunder-buddy in the future. If you don't like bugs, be weary across the first third of this course.

Navigation is pretty rough at multiple points of this course. I'd argue the transition from one to two isn't the most obvious, but a few others are much worse. The route from hole 8 to hole 9 is not intuitive in the slightest, and an old out-of-use tee pad may only further confuse folks playing here for the first time. Holes 9 to 10 is also not clear, requiring you to walk along the fence and then up a service road to find it. Hole 11 is not visible from hole 11, and You could easily find yourself at hole 14 after 11 if you look the wrong way. The worse part is the last four hole, which are separated from the rest of the course. After 14, walk down the road to the next parking lot on the left, and you'll find 15. This also makes for a Fellowship-Of-The-Ring-Like walk from 18 to your car. Honestly, my friends and I drove to that other lot after playing 14, and it made for a nicer experience playing Briscoe; I recommend you do the same. This layout is actually miles better than the original layout you'll find on DGCR in some ways. That being said, it still sucks from a navigation standpoint. Additional directional signs would make a world of difference, and I hope that's included in the upcoming sign upgrades.

Safety comes to mind as well on a couple of holes. Hole 12 is one where you could end up on the street, so make sure you look before you throw. 14 is also a hole that can take you along a couple of streets depending on your first shot, and the main road is kind of blind from the fairway as well. The biggest problem point for me is actually hole 18, which plays entirely along the main road. They added a tall mando post for you to respect, but any errant shot to the right can and will end up over or on the road. This can be a very blind shot from much of the fairway as well, and the road gets plenty of traffic during the day, so please be careful if you play 18, especially if you're solo and don't have a spotter.

Prairie Grass is far from a favorite for many folks, so if you aren't a fan of it, you'll be in for a treat on holes 8, 10, 11, and 12. The height and thickness really vary over the year, and the parks department does a great job from a conservation standpoint. Unfortunately, that sometimes means bad news for disc golfers when its fully grown, and much of it can have thorns or prickly spots. I was picking stuff off my pants and hoodie from hole 10 to 18 after looking for friend's disc in the cabbage, so be careful of errant shots on those holes.

Other Thoughts:

This is really the last course in the St. Louis metro area I have to review that was installed before 2020, and I have to say I enjoyed I more than I thought I would. It's not a course I have seen get a lot of love specifically on local social pages, and it is universally rated lower than its older brother. That being said it has some nice variety to it, and makes for a pretty complete 36 hole complex within Sioux Passage. This was the first park in St. Louis to receive a second course, and fast forward a decade and we are now lucky enough to have two more parks with multiple 18s at Creve Coeur Lake and Jefferson Barracks.

This course has really been a long-term project to get where it is today, and has seems like it has perpetually been under construction or improvement. While there is more than enough land in Sioux Passage for two parks, the front part of the park where Briscoe lies is awkward as a whole, so I understand that the folks behind the design did what they could. With concrete tees in, the current layout looks like it's pretty set now, but navigational signs would do a lot to overcome the multiple awkward transitions throughout this course. The concrete tees are a real plus from what seems to be a course that formerly had turf, which probably didn't do great on this terrain, and the baskets are really top notch in both quality and color, coming from a red-green colorblind disc golfer.

Sioux Passage might be the more remote disc golf spot in St. Louis, and it's a complex that would definitely get more play if it was just a little closer to civilization. It's a shame too, because I think this park can really compete with most of the other courses and 36-hole complexes in St. Louis as a complete product. The original Sioux Passage course was one of the first courses in the area and for a while was also its highest rated. Briscoe makes for a great sequel, with additional technicality, shorter holes, and an overall experience that compliments the OG well.

It's not the easiest to get to, but if you have time for a bit of an adventure, give Briscoe Woods and Sioux Passage a visit.
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12 0
wolfhaley
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 20 years 977 played 545 reviews
3.00 star(s)

2+ years

Reviewed: Played on:Jul 14, 2020 Played the course:once

Pros:

Sioux Passage's Briscoe Woods is the shorter, more technical of the two 18's here. Located in the Southwest corner of the park, It does it pretty decent job of playing away from other park activities, besides being right along the road for the front 9.

It says there's DGA baskets on the course info page, luckily that wasn't the case. DISCatcher's on this course, which are all in OK shape but caught just fine. They're showing some age but work good enough. The yellow bands, as usual, make spotting them easy in the woods.

There's a mix of tee pads, though most are concrete. Pretty narrow and not the longest but they're better than natural or rubber mats. A hole (5 I think it was) or 2 use the park road as the tee. Hole 2 had a turf mat and 3 was concrete stones. Each were plenty servicable. All the rest are concrete if I remember correctly.

The signs here are pretty much worthless. The are 4x4's with a laminated placard with the hole #. No distances, pars or any other pertinent info. Kind of disappointing for an out of towner like myself. At least there were posts I guess.

The course starts and ends near the parking lot, which is a plus. Actually the front nine ends by the lot too. Even better. The course is free to play and permanent. The park itself was well mowed and maintained when I was there. No complaints in that regard.

The front 9 plays like a mini version of the original, in every way. Mini pads, hills and distances. It's good, albeit a little bland, but good enough. The back 9 is where it really shines. Holes 10 thru 16 wind through the woods and offer good challenge. Holes 17 and 18 play along some of the prairie grass. Meh. But those 7 hole in the middle are really good. I wish the whole course was like those. And by the name of the course that's kind of what I envisioned in my head.

A good mix of shots are required here. You can do alright with just a backhand (me usually). But if you can throw a sidearm too you'll do OK. Pretty well balanced in that regard.

Cons:

The flow of this course is horrendous. I used the map on Udisc, which was pretty accurate, and still had a few confusing transitions. You cross the road after 2, 3,5, and 9. No next tee signs to be found. It's straightforward on the back half but the front is ridiculous.

You have to walk down the same park road to get to 6 and 10. Not the safest design as it's a kind of blind turn and I seen a few cars flying through there.

The tee signs as mentioned earlier are essentially useless. Even a basic hole map would go a long way. Hell, even a distance. I'd settle for that. Nope, you get the hole #. The one thing you're likely to know.

The prairie grass on 17 and 18 is awful to look through if you go off the fairway. Tons of different varieties of plants to dig through. It's also THICK, and really tall in spots. Good chance you'll not find your disc if it's too far off the fairway.

Other Thoughts:

I enjoyed this course about the same as the original. I'm a woods golf guy and this has some of that. I enjoyed my round here despite the many cons, but it's just a slightly above average course. I wouldn't go out of my way to play this course again, but it's not a bad course. I understand that they did what they could with the available land and made a solid course. It's just...OK.
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9 1
disco40
Experience: 4.6 years 20 played 7 reviews
2.50 star(s)

Mostly good holes, but oh the flow 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Feb 3, 2020 Played the course:once

Pros:

See below for the course flow in "other thoughts," so that people won't tromp around so much looking for holes, like I had to do.
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The holes themselves are mostly interesting and cool in and of themselves. 17 and 18 are stinkers mowed into the grass. Not sure what could have been done about this, but they are a sore thumb as it stands today.

Some challenging tree gaps from #7 thru #16.

Quite a pretty area for a walk.

Steps, where needed, are in place in the steep areas, almost cart-friendly (I got mine through fine). Thank you to whoever did this work.

It's disc golf! And the terrain is good.

Cons:

The flow is unfriendly for your first time, to the point that you might not find all the holes.

The tight tree gaps are more of a 'con' for me, but that's because I'm not very good. #7 thru #16 (except for #9) can be very frustrating.

For #9, you will probably throw a hyzer over a road with a blind hill. It would be very easy to brick a vehicle here through no fault of anyone. Please consider using a spotter for this tee shot.

Walking from #5-#6, and then back from #9-#10 is on a narrow road and is not necessarily safe.

Chains are getting a bit old and rusty, though the baskets seem to catch fine still.

Other Thoughts:

Okay, the flow. As of 3 February 2020.


#1 is up past the kiosk. You tee off by throwing over the service road and straight uphill to a blind basket.

#2 is a short walk to the left and you throw toward the park entrance.

#3 is across the park road and the tee will be to your left soon.

#4 is back across the park road on the huge 'island' made by the access/parking road. You're just uphill from the parking lot, teeing from in front of the access road down the long island.

#5 is also on the 'island' and you tee from the road in the parking lot. There is a small wooden sign with a '5' and a mark on the road.

#6 is a hike, down the main road for a few hundred yards and then turn right and walk to the end of a parking lot. Wooden sign and tee area is marked. You tee through a tree gap into a more open area.

#7 is uphill left from #6. It's near the pad for #9. It's a par 4, stay right, on the high ground.

#8 is close to #7s basket, down into the thicker woods to the right. Tee pad was visible from #7 basket.

#9 walk back up the hill, it's near #7s tee but throwing the other way.

#10 is back in the parking lot. Throws down into the woods from the parking area and is easy to find.

#11-#16 through the tight woods should be navigable without directions.

#17 is NOT THE FIRST TEE PAD YOU SEE. Walk well past that to the road and go left. Throw up to a mowed island.

#18 is close by and obvious.


I really recommend printing these directions out or finding somebody who has played it before. The PDGA map is not correct, at all. Appears to have been majorly redesigned. If you try to follow that map, as I did, you will get very confused.

It feels bad only giving this 2.5 stars, as the holes themselves are mostly worthy of a 3+. But the navigation and the finishing duds hurt this course.


btw if anybody can figure out how the heck you're supposed to get close on #16 through the wall of trees, let us know.
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6 2
MrFrosty
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Experience: 31.1 years 764 played 387 reviews
2.50 star(s)

Great compliment to Original if you can find the flow 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:May 26, 2019 Played the course:once

Pros:

Sioux Passage features 2 courses in this large park , this being the technical shorter of the 2 . This course does not have quite as tall grass as the Original , except for #s 17 and 18 . Briscoe Woods has nice but kind of short cement tees , baskets are in good condition , and plenty of parking available either at the tennis courts or up next to the #10 tee . This is a more technical course with more than half the course in the woods . The course will test your nerve . Not as much elevation on this course as the other , but the course designers did as much with it as they could which is okay . The basket placements were good enough . My favorite hole would have been 17 if there was some type of fairway to the green , so I counted it as #10 , where you start your drive out of the bushed on your right and left , downhill to the guarded green .

Cons:

Truthfully , I gave this course a 2.5 instead of a 2 only because the park has 2 courses within walking distance of one another . My list of problems with this course starts with #1. Kiosk at the course does NOT update you nor show you the layout of this course . If you are an out of town disc golf enthusiast like me , you need this if the course flow is not obvious . I never could find baskets or tees for 6-9 so I gave up on them . The tee signs are basically a long piece of wood with a paper with a number sealed in plastic . I found out that this course was redesigned over again . There is NO course flow here . If you didn't print a map off and are not a local , you are going on a safari to find many of these holes . Especially going from 16 to 17 . You pop out of the woods and you will encounter a tee pad without a number on your left . Steps lead from the tee pad down to the ground where in front of you very high grass and vegetation exists . DO NOT THROW FROM THIS TEE PAD . A small sign about 200' + in front of the pad states it is a growth project . Why someone didn't just write in chalk to not tee there and point to the real tee pad , I don't know . Up a little farther past this tee pad is the tee pad for 17 . Your drive will go to a makeshilft island which is just grass mowed lower about 20' around the pin . It was hard to see where this island was because the grass was so high , even in the fairway , I had to wander out in the high grass to make sure it existed . There is a drop zone off to your left if you miss the island . You walk up the hill after finishing 17 to 18's tee pad . where you throw slightly downhill ( more of a fairway ) to the final basket . I figured out where #1's tee pad was from there , was not sure that was it because the wind had blown the flapping tee sign closed . #1 tee pad is next to the road upwards from where you tee off for #10 . It is a straight shot uphill , where unless you walk up the fairway , as with all of the blind baskets on this course , you will not know that it is almost straight in front of you about 300' . #2 goes down towards the entrance to the park , where you will cross the street to find #3 . After throwing up the left side of the street ( only hole on this side ) , you come back over to #4 , which is visible from #1 and #10's tees . a straight shot . Then I wasn't sure where #5's tee pad was so I had to safari to the basket down the hill . NEXT TEE signs would work wonders for this course , or even colored tape on the rungs of the bottom of the basket pointing you toward the tee ( Most of the courses in the St Louis area lack this ) . Did I mention that the navigation was terrible on this course . I gave up after looking and not finding #6's tee . Bugs are terrible in this park . Bring spray . The only bathroom I saw on the course was a large one to the left and down the road from the #5 basket .

Other Thoughts:

Being a decent drive northwest of St Louis and away from I-70 , you have to have a product worth the effort to come here . You already boast 2 courses in one park , and can link White Birch, Dunegant and Hudson in with it since it there are on the way or are close to it .. If you want your park to be a feature in this area , you have to take care of it and bring it up a couple of standards . Some real signage , mowing and general trimming would take care of most of it . I am glad I came to see what Sioux Passage Park was all about , but left a bit unfulfilled . My recommendation : If you have lots of time to play a lot of the courses in St Louis and want to travel the extra 5 miles from Dunegant , go ahead and give it a try , but don't build up great expectations .
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12 1
Three Putt
Staff member
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 29.3 years 152 played 127 reviews
3.00 star(s)

Many times I've been alone and many times I've cried. Any way you'll never know the many ways I've tried 2+ years

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:Oct 27, 2018 Played the course:2-4 times

Pros:

Briscoe Woods is the second course in Sioux Passage Park, and it's very different from the original. The original course features long, park-style shots with dramatic elevation changes, but Briscoe Woods has eight wooded shots and features shorter distances. There is still some good elevation changes on Briscoe Woods, but not as extreme and the original course. It creates a significantly different playing experience from one course to the other. You have to have quite a bit more accuracy with your shot placement on Briscoe Woods than you need on the original course across the street.

The shots are fairly solid, although none of them stood out to me as exceptional. A lot of the wooded holes are cleaned out very wide, which creates some nice visual effects. It's a pleasant park to spend a day in. The course has been re-designed slightly since it opened, old hole 2 has been broken up into two shots and new holes 2-3 have been added at the start of the course, while original holes 14-16 have been removed. This has required the renumbering of all of the shots in-between.

The holes from the original layout have concrete tees and are marked with posts. The three new tees were marked with a stake sign and hole 3 had a paved tee. The tee markings had numbers but no maps or distances. Hole 12 has a bench that looks like the stairs from a building, which was odd but cool at the same time.

Cons:

In a reoccurring St. Louis theme, the major knock on Briscoe Woods is the flow. You play holes 1-2 and are at the entrance to the park with no indication of where to go. You have to walk over the entry road to find hole 3. Hole 3 is the only hole on Briscoe Woods on that side of the road. You have to cross the road and another road to find hole 4 (which used to be hole 2.) You play holes 4-5 and then you are stuck. The only other tee you can see is the tee for hole 10. You have to walk down the main park road around a creek culvert and across a parking lot to find the tee for hole 6 (which used to be hole 3.) Holes 6-9 are in this section of the park, but once you are done with hole 9 you repeat the long walk across the parking lot and down the main park road around the creek culvert and back up a hill to the tee for 10. Holes 10-16 wind through the woods, but once you finish hole 16 there is an overgrown section of the park where three holes used to be. Hole 16 used to be hole 13, old holes 14/15/16 are gone and there is no indication where hole 17 is in relation to where you are. You have to wander up the hill and hope you find it.

IF there were adequate signage to get you around the park it would be no big deal, but Briscoe Woods has inadequate signage for a course with good flow. The tee posts have no distance information, no hole map, just a number. There needs to be a major investment in tee signs and directional signs to keep playing this course from being a frustrating experience for first-time players. The fact that it's not even the worst flow of a St. Louis-area course and none of the courses with flow issues have directional signs makes me think it's a problem that's not going to be fixed anytime soon.

The other design issue Briscoe Woods has is the use of plinko trees. On hole 7 (used to be 4) there is a gap that is littered with skinny trees. Some players say there is a gap there, I'm just not good enough to hit it. That I can't hit the gap isn't the issue, I can't SEE the gap. Most of the wooded holes also have a scattering of skinny trees in the fairway. The design is on that edge of "challenging to hit the gap" and "poke and pray." I'm not 100% sure which way it goes, but I feel like I need to mention it.

A couple of the holes are not very good. Hole 9 (used to be 6) is I guess ok, it's just weird that the basket is set down so low under the playing surface. It seems like a putt-putt shot. Hole 14 (used to be 11) is just bad. The fairway is narrow with deep, disc-eating shule on a blind turnover line, but even if you get your shot down the fairway there are plinko trees just around the turn. It's a poke and pray shot at best.

The ending holes are odd. Hole 17 is a tall grass island shot that you can't see from the tee because it's uphill; you pretty much have to have a spotter to play the hole. There isn't a "fairway" and there is no hole map on the tee sign, so there is no real indication of what you are supposed to do from the tee as throwing blindly into tall grass doesn't seem like a thing you should do. Hole 18 is another tall grass shot; there is a generous island around the basket but the fairway to that island is too narrow and the shot is too long. There needs to be a mowed-out landing zone for weenie-arms to aim for since not everyone can reach the island and the fairway is unrealistically narrow. Both holes seem like tournament-type holes where you try to create challenge out of what otherwise is a wide-open throw to a wide-open basket, and in a tournament setting they probably are OK. Set up like that for everyday use by casual golfers is just an invitation to spend several minutes tromping around in tall grass looking for discs and makes an annoying ending to your round.

After you play hole 8 (used to be hole 5) you pop out into the open pretty close to the pin for hole 6, you have to watch out when you walk up to the tee for 9. You cross park roads quite a bit and twice you have quite a long walk down the side of a park road, so you need to be observant of other park users.

Other Thoughts:

Briscoe Woods would be a nice intermediate course and a good compliment to the advanced/pro layout across the street IF there were directional signs to help you find your way. I get that in multi-use parks that sometimes the land you have available is split up and requires some walking, but when that happens you have to help players find the next hole. Briscoe Woods doesn't even have a course map in the kiosk by the parking area. It's like no one cares that they have a course that is next to impossible to navigate. The park is well maintained and the course is well cared for, so the lack of signs/maps is very confusing.

In the 90's when Albert Oakland Back and Rosedale Down Under were installed, we wanted a park in St. Louis with two courses and Sioux Passage was the park big enough for that to happen in. We went to the park and got permission to use a temp course for tournaments and I helped design the setup for that. Briscoe Woods uses a lot of the same land as that course but starts in a different spot and when it opened it had no hint of the old tournament course in the design. In the most recent redesign the new holes 2 and 3 are shots from that tournament course, which makes me personally like the new design. Pretty much no one else on the planet is going to have that bias, though

Sioux Passage is in the middle of nowhere; it's a haul just to get out there. Generally when I've trekked all the way up there I have time to play one course, and the big course at Sioux Passage is such a better course IMO that I almost never play Briscoe Woods even though it suits my skill level and playing style 1,000X better than the bomber shots across the street. If you are planning a trip, make sure you play the original Sioux Passage course. Briscoe Woods makes a nice round if you have time for a second 18.
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6 1
Jacobpaul81
Experience: 25.1 years 101 played 7 reviews
3.00 star(s)

Technical Course, Long Walks 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Mar 18, 2018 Played the course:once

Pros:

Lots of wooded technical holes. Mostly a Mid-Range / Putter course with only a few holes requiring a driver. I actually like that, but others will hate it.

There are some real stand out holes - #7, #8, #10, #13, #15, #17, #18. 7 of 18 ain't bad.


Cons:

Course has serious flow issues. 2 very long walks, several less than quality holes. It's currently being reworked but what I saw wasn't particularly inspiring.

Some holes are overly-technical venturing on pure dumb luck to get a decent approach. I'm not a fan of the 4 par impassable wooded dogleg hole. This course has several.

Other Thoughts:

Course was in flux. I passed at least one pad that was out of commission and 2 which were replacing others. It's too bad neither helped with the flow issues between 5 & 6 and 9 & 10. I witnessed other players parking at 6 playing the 6-9, then driving to 10 to play holes 10-5.
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2 5
Rokdawg
Experience: 5 played 5 reviews
2.00 star(s)

Numbers Mean Nothing 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Oct 6, 2017 Played the course:once

Pros:

It has baskets

Cons:

Maps out at the course i did not find. Hole numbering did not make sense. I am not a great player I should not be here. Not sure about most holes or pins gave up after 5 holes. Not numbered ones as the flow of the ones I was on did not make sense 1 2 7 huh? Decent maps and direction signs would be a great improvement
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5 2
OldGolfer
Experience: 19 played 19 reviews
3.50 star(s)

Briscoe Woods 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Feb 24, 2017 Played the course:2-4 times

Pros:

The Old Golfer says this is a challenging course for geezers ...

First, it's a "winter only" course, as once the growth season arrives, the discs get lost.

Second, drive placement here is just as important as distance. It's fun, really, it's fun. But it's a challenge.

Tee pads are all good -- concrete and long enough to be a real help.

A variety of holes - doglegs, long drives (none are short), and no shortage of trees make this course a fun workout -- and it's a workout. Several uphill shots make for a real workout.

Cons:

No real cons. I suspect poison ivy in the summer, although I have yet to play in summer, and rather than play Briscoe Woods in summer I think I'll play Sioux Passage, which is right next door.

Other Thoughts:

Like all courses, it is what you make it.

Have fun.
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4 5
jvbh792
Experience: 8.1 years 16 played 12 reviews
4.50 star(s)

Top 10 in st louis 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Nov 7, 2016 Played the course:once

Pros:

Easily a top 10 course in St Louis
Beautiful course
Challenging holes
Varied lines and often multiple lines to an individual pin
Concrete pads
multiple pin locations
a second course in the same park

Cons:

Not as long or well put together as it's bigger brother
meanders and is easy to get lost without a course map.

Other Thoughts:

This course gets WAY more hate than it deserves. I think mostly because it's so close to such an excellent course (Big Sioux, highest rated in St Louis). So when compared directly to that course it looks shabby, however it's very easily a top 10 course in St. Louis.
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5 1
mrbro855
Gold level trusted reviewer
Experience: 10.5 years 363 played 105 reviews
3.00 star(s)

Could be so much more!! 2+ years

Reviewed: Played on:Oct 29, 2016 Played the course:once

Pros:

Scenic course that is a second 18 to the Original Sioux Passage right next to it on the park grounds.
Predominately a wooded course with a few baskets that are more open throws.
4x4's and concrete pads made the tee areas easy enough to find if you had the map from this site.
Couple of memorable holes:
#1 Blind uphill throw to a basket on down side of hill.
#6 Somewhat short throw to a basket in a moat structure (flag on top to mark the spot)
#11 Moderate big S throw through a fairway cut through the trees.
All in all, most of the holes were pretty fun.

Cons:

The flow!! Seemed like they wanted to use the whole acreage so they made several of the walks from basket to basket very long!! From #2 to #3 and #6 to #7 were the longest of the lot.
After playing and relooking at the map, the course order could easily be rearranged to compensate for that.

Other Thoughts:

After looking at other reviews and the date established, I expected much more.
Looks like very little has been done with this course to take it to the next level. In fact, I'm guessing it has regressed since it's opening.
The alternate pin placement is only effective if you have good signage and the thrower can discern which placement it is.
All in all, I probably could have written more cons than I did..... but the bottom line was that the sum of the basket play was actually very fun. For that reason, it merited the 3 rating from me..... BUT, add legit signage, rearrange the flow (which looks possible), take out a couple more trees on the impossible holes (#13 comes to mind) and this could get a "4" rating....
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3 5
mikepizza
Experience: 1 played 1 reviews
3.00 star(s)

Good course, bring OFF and guide 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Jul 10, 2015 Played the course:2-4 times

Pros:

Beautiful scenery
Good shot combos
Good for skilled players

Cons:

Buffet for mosquitoes
Layout isn't very fluid
Needs better pin cards on tee posts - Distances written in sharpie, no hole maps

Other Thoughts:

One of the best in the area
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8 1
parbuster54
Experience: 2 played 2 reviews
2.00 star(s)

Disappointed 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:May 25, 2015 Played the course:once

Pros:

Concrete tee pads were level and smooth. A few bomber holes with mostly wooded tight holes. Good land for a course. In the same park with Souix Passages original course.

Cons:

Where do I start. No tee signs. No directional signs and it definitely needs this. Very poor flow. Huge walks from hole 2 to hole 3 then from hole 6 to hole 7. You better study the course map or you will be lost and may never find hole 3. It is just 1 year old so it is not beat in yet but that doesn't cover for all of the trees left in the middle of many fairways. Way too much luck is involved here when making your throws. The back nine has several holes layed out in the middle of 3-4 foot tall weeds with an extremely narrow fairway. Most drives will land in the high grass and it takes a long time to find the disc.

Other Thoughts:

Having played over 200 courses around the country it is easy to see this course has a lot of potential. There has been a lot of work done to put this course in but it has a long way to go yet. Give it a few years, some hole changes to improve flow, remove some trees, add tee signs and directional signs then it could be very good.
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13 0
Golden Tuna
Bronze level trusted reviewer
Experience: 23.1 years 185 played 31 reviews
4.00 star(s)

Another great addition to St. Louis 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:Jun 8, 2014 Played the course:2-4 times

Pros:

Part of a 36-hole complex, restrooms within the park, multiple pin placements that can really up the difficulty, concrete tee pads, nice baskets, elevation changes, tight and technical, flows pretty well, easy to navigate (except for 2 areas), very creative use of open spaces, lots of character

This course is pretty good as a stand-alone, but the fact that it is located in Sioux Passage Park right next to the original 18 really bumps up the allure. This is the first location in St. Louis to have 36 holes. The maintenance staff at Sioux Passage has always done an extremely good job maintaining the "big" course and I have similar hopes for Briscoe. The designer really leveraged the elevation changes to add difficulty to the fairways and make some longer placements more scenic and difficult. There are some fast greens around a couple of the harder placements, so there is a lot of risk/reward, especially with the (currently) narrow fairways. You should definitely scout the fairways before throwing your drive because the thick brush hides some big drop offs and a creek along a good number of holes. Smart golf will result in scoring well out here. In addition to some very unique holes, such as the hole 17 island green, this course already has a lot of character just by doing some little things like re-purposing down trees as benches, creatively using rocks to combat erosion around tee pads, and the little bird house roof on hole 16's tee post. These are little thing, but things that will make this course more memorable. You can really get a sense of the designer's personality from these little add-ons. Lastly, the course is named for the person that donated the land, so I like that they paid homage that way.

Cons:

Broken flow in 2 places on the front 9, limited parking, really tight in some areas (for now), no trash cans yet

I honestly don't have anything to complain about with this course. I will point out, as other have, that the walk between 2 & 3 and 6 & 7 are not great. Without proper signage, someone playing this course for the first time on their own could get lost. Luckily, there is already a kiosk near hole 1 with a course map. I anticipate better signage sometime soon. Other than that, there is limited parking for this course, there are a lot more spaces at the original course, but the park rangers were very friendly and didn't hassle me for parking half on the grass. Some of the fairways are poke and hope, but I think of this as more of a positive. Had the designer cut all the trees/brush back the course/fairways would continue to erode even more quickly. By leaving the fairways a little raw, the natural erosion that comes from heavy traffic will open up the fairways just enough to be a little more fair, while maintaining a good challenge.

Other Thoughts:

This course offers a great challenge, especially when played on the same day as the original course. Now that there are 36 holes in 1 place, I'd say this is the #1 top visit if you're coming to St. Louis for a weekend. There are some tricky shots so bring an assortment of discs. Briscoe contrasts the original course beautifully. Since there isn't much shade on the original course, play Sioux Passage in the morning and the more shaded Briscoe in the afternoon. As I mentioned, there aren't a ton of trash cans, so if you pack it in, please pack it out.

Traveler's Tip: The park is somewhat secluded so bring anything you need, drinks, snacks, etc. The closest place to get a snack/drink is probably about 10 minutes drive from hole 1. Again, if you pack it in, please pack it out. Enjoy!
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17 2
stubborn puppet
Silver level trusted reviewer
Experience: 13.2 years 48 played 27 reviews
4.00 star(s)

Welcome to Briscoe Woods 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:May 30, 2014 Played the course:2-4 times

Pros:

Let me just start by saying that this course is just so darn scenic and unique. Beautiful landscapes, real woodsy woods and stunning challenges. It took years to plan and over a year to install... and it was worth the wait.
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>The first pro: Two courses in one park! And Briscoe Woods is a total contrast, in just about every way, from it's bigger, older brother, Sioux Passage.
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> A ton of variety. It sounds like a cliche' but, "it used every disc in my bag." It also forced me to think of some brand new ways to use the discs in my bag - like decisions to pull out an overstable distance driver on a 150' approach (which worked, by the way).
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> It's a tough course, but not nearly as mean as it first seems. If you relax and think instinctively and creatively about your throws, you will be rewarded.
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> There are so many holes which play in ways I've never seen elsewhere. I was impressed, challenged and inspired.
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> No real repetition on this course. From one hole to the next, it really felt like something new to do. That's not to say that there weren't times to throw the same drive as on other holes, but that either the slope of the terrain changed drastically from a downhill to an uphill or that one time it's a more open field and another time it's about making the gap in the trees.
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> The overall length of the course is a good deal shorter than the "big-arm" courses that have become the standard for new disc golf courses... and that's a great thing. Course designer, Francis Albanese, took a very unique piece of land and forged opportunities to really explore the two most important parts of disc golf, ones that often get lost in the modern obsession with longer drives - accuracy and strategy.
This, in no way, means that it's a "short course" or an old-school course. What it means is that players shouldn't expect to step up to every tee pad with their favorite distance driver in hand, looking to park their drive as close to the basket as possible - it'd be a poor strategy for a good score at Briscoe. Many times today, I rediscovered the lost art of the intentional lay-up or how loft can be better than power. This course is going to make me a better player.
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> Hey, being a guy who can't spend much time in the sun without loads of sunscreen, I loved that most of this course has plenty of available shade. There are still several sunny holes, but they are even spaced and big old trees were still there to hide under while waiting for others. :) Nice.
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> I also like that this course punishes arrogance, quite severely sometimes. Like many others, I often get cocky about "just going for it"... but Briscoe kept whispering words of reason to me and gave me purpose to think twice.
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> I kind of said it already, but the beauty and scenery at Briscoe Woods is just as varied and unique to the St. Louis area as the creative shots. It's not even just the natural spectacle that caught my eye, but the wonderfully artistic things that the designer and the volunteer workers did - creative, unique and lovely foundations for tee pads, the arrow shaped foundation for a particular tee sign (see if you can find it), some surprisingly awesome tee locations and all kinds of thoughtful and organic looking finishing touches. Bravo!
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> I found that there were a lot of great choices on where to start playing your round. You could start at 1, you could start at 10, you could start at 7, or 3... and still end up right by your car.

Cons:

> Getting the obvious con right out there, the walk from 2 to 3 and the walk from 6 to 7 (if you play the holes in the right order ;) ) is pretty darn long and kind of awkward. That said, "I get it." With restrictions on where you can build in an established park bordered by neighborhoods... sacrifices have to be made.
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> Some of the tee boxes felt unfortunately short to me. I have long legs and like a long, striding, wind up run... and I often felt limited and forced to scale back to keep from stepping off the pad. Sometimes I think this could have been done differently quite easily. Other times, I realized, "this is the best place/only place for the pad... I'll just deal with it."
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> I really hate the "prarie restoration" areas. The do a fine job of defining four of the fairways and provide needed punishment for reckless throws... but it still sucks. I hate nothing more than being forced to trample through this junk to spend forever looking for a disc, all the while being scratched to shreds by multiple varieties of evil weeds... and the inevitable poison ivy. I didn't get off in them more than once today, but I was playing well.
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> Speaking of the "prarie restoration" areas, the parks dept is mowing them too darn narrow. Even the pros aren't always going to be able to land in a 12' narrow fairway every time. Originally the tall "grasses" were going to be O.B., but the current over-narrowness (I think I just made that word up) has led the course rules to drop the OB on all but hole 17 (which is intentionally an island shot with a drop-zone).
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> There are still many spots where more of the great flagstone steps are going to be needed. The mud out here is fresh and very slippery, so watch your step and look for something to hold on to. I imagine this will be corrected as time goes, the course installation time-frame did get pretty rushed in the last 30 days.
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> Bugs, bugs, bugs. Bring the deep woods spray. Watch for the mosquitoes in the low areas and check for ticks. Not that this is really abnormal for St. Louis in the summer, but I'd say it's a little bit more prevalent here (but not nearly as bad as Blue Bird or Indian Camp Creek).
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> One or two minor safety concerns with roadways or players emerging from the woods by another playable area... but they are indeed "minor" and will become almost a non-issue as the course becomes familiar and broken in.
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> It could use more trashcans in many places and fewer in others. That sounds silly, but when you see no trashcans for several holes and then suddenly you see two trashcans at the next two holes...
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> Parking can be an issue at events. There's not much parking near the head of the course at all, so be early or be prepared to walk.

Other Thoughts:

I've walked the course four times now, played all of the holes three times - a few several more times and I'm pretty confident about my above pros and cons. I have another buddy who has now played it and agrees with me on this review.
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Don't forget to take a map with you the first time. The navigation isn't hard at all after you've played (or walked) it, but you'll be a little confused in a few spots until you know. The map will also certainly help locating baskets and planning shots as many of them aren't visible from the pad.
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St. Louis really, really needed this course. The only local courses that even explore some of what Briscoe Woods does are relatively crappy, poorly maintained 9 holes.
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Thank you very, very much to Francis and all of the folks who volunteered their blood, sweat and tears over the last 14+months of laborious installation. You are all disc golf heroes.
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