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Old 10-01-2010, 11:03 AM
TinHornDan TinHornDan is offline
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Default Ball Golf Course Design Principles vs. DG course Design

What opinions do any if you have in regard what there is to learn from ball golf course design principles that could be applied to disc golf course design?

Also, what do you think the disc golf equivalent to the bunker or sand trap in ball golf is? At first, I thought that trees are our bunkers. However, the more I learn about golf course design the less this seems to be the case.

Finally, what principles of course design are unique to disc golf alone? The fact that ball golf is played about equally on the ground and in the air, as opposed to disc golf which is played nearly 99% in the air, must make the design of the courses quite different. How so?
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:12 AM
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Queue Professor Kennedy .......

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Old 10-01-2010, 11:32 AM
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I think the bunkers for Disc Golf change by the course or the region.

Cedar Trees in parts of the South are excellent hazards. Long, 3-5' tall, grass is also a hazard. There was a course I played one time that had Sumac patches planted. The Sumac grew to about 10-12' high and if you ended up in those patches you had a difficult shot to get out.

I think one of the challenges some course offer is having a basket on the side of a hill where a missed putt can roll forever a way.
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:56 AM
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Roll away greens are one of the most prominent elements becoming more and more the norm on good courses. Elevated pins are also a good option...you can be within a few feet of the pin and be putting over your head. Same feature can be used oppositely; i.e. down hill pin placement with hill fall off behind the pin; thus challenging you to decide whether to make a real run or lay up.

Things like Sumac are not used as often as they could be. I love the look of sumac. Trouble with this particular plant is that it is a very aggressive grower. I know of a private course, not listed here, that has an entire fairway of sumac trees. Very interesting hole; but kind of plinko. I simply use a tomahawk to go over it all. Were the hole longer, this would not be as viable an option.

Tall grass/bushes, just off the fairways was a design element that was used well on Madison, Wisconsin, courses (i.e. Elver primarily). Many reviewers; including our second diamond reviewer hate this sort of rough though. Monster course in Kensington, MI is another extreme example of allowing bushes/trees to dominate parts of the fairway. I'm not sure how fond I am of this style. Seems to me, it negates quality of drives and brings a lot of luck into play in regards to stances on second and third shots.

Stone pile roughs would make for difficult footing on an upshot or putt; but this seems to be considered too dangerous for public courses. Flip City would be an example of this type of bunker. Though, those are played as o.b. and your shot is played from behind the o.b. This perhaps alleviates the danger issues.

Some courses these days, are placing pins in spots where pin access in limited on one side or more, by thick bushes/trees, or even artificial obstacles; which forces decisions on which direction to lay up; much like good ball golf holes. I've played another private where this was used extensively and interestingly. This is another example of being within 30 foot of a pin and only having a lay up shot; or, some sort of overhead shot for a deuce. Great option for short courses....Unfortunately, many vandal style players will break a couple of these trees or bushes every time they play; and before long, there will be a path to pin.

Extreme dog legs, with a very small landing zone to reach the corner, is another up and coming design feature that I like and think will be a prominent design feature in the near future, on many more courses.

Water near the pin, or near landing zone for level designed for, is of course an option.
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Old 10-03-2010, 01:08 PM
Steve West Steve West is offline
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When I was designing two disc golf courses in on ball golf courses, I often found myself using the same features in the same way as they were intended for ball golf.

The difference was that these features were designed to come into play for ball golfers only as punishment for a bad shot. For disc golfers, they were just about the right about of challenge for the tee shot.
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Old 10-03-2010, 01:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tallpaul View Post
Roll away greens are one of the most prominent elements becoming more and more the norm on good courses. Elevated pins are also a good option...you can be within a few feet of the pin and be putting over your head. Same feature can be used oppositely; i.e. down hill pin placement with hill fall off behind the pin; thus challenging you to decide whether to make a real run or lay up.

Things like Sumac are not used as often as they could be. I love the look of sumac. Trouble with this particular plant is that it is a very aggressive grower. I know of a private course, not listed here, that has an entire fairway of sumac trees. Very interesting hole; but kind of plinko. I simply use a tomahawk to go over it all. Were the hole longer, this would not be as viable an option.

Tall grass/bushes, just off the fairways was a design element that was used well on Madison, Wisconsin, courses (i.e. Elver primarily). Many reviewers; including our second diamond reviewer hate this sort of rough though. Monster course in Kensington, MI is another extreme example of allowing bushes/trees to dominate parts of the fairway. I'm not sure how fond I am of this style. Seems to me, it negates quality of drives and brings a lot of luck into play in regards to stances on second and third shots.

Stone pile roughs would make for difficult footing on an upshot or putt; but this seems to be considered too dangerous for public courses. Flip City would be an example of this type of bunker. Though, those are played as o.b. and your shot is played from behind the o.b. This perhaps alleviates the danger issues.

Some courses these days, are placing pins in spots where pin access in limited on one side or more, by thick bushes/trees, or even artificial obstacles; which forces decisions on which direction to lay up; much like good ball golf holes. I've played another private where this was used extensively and interestingly. This is another example of being within 30 foot of a pin and only having a lay up shot; or, some sort of overhead shot for a deuce. Great option for short courses....Unfortunately, many vandal style players will break a couple of these trees or bushes every time they play; and before long, there will be a path to pin.

Extreme dog legs, with a very small landing zone to reach the corner, is another up and coming design feature that I like and think will be a prominent design feature in the near future, on many more courses.

Water near the pin, or near landing zone for level designed for, is of course an option.
Words of wisdom!

I know mashnut and I have had a brief discussion on the viability and the pros/cons of tall grass/bushes off the fairway as a risk on more open holes. I'm in favor, and I believe he dislikes it. Personally, I feel it is better than wide open and completely grassy.

90degree doglegs are something I've run into, and I have to say, I really like them if they actually force taking the fairway, i.e., no up-n-over route and/or mandos to keep peeps honest. Red #6 (I think?) at Lemon Lake is a good example of this.

Another option I enjoy (if used sparingly and correctly) is the artificial island green, with a roadway or other markers providing the out of bounds. Easier on the pocketbook and plastic, with the same risk of strokes as real water.
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Old 10-05-2010, 07:53 AM
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One feature comparable to bunkers is a patch of trees, without underbrush. Not so thick that it can't be penetrated, but thick enough to force the thrower to make a creative shot, such as a slow S-turn. An area that you don't want to be in, but where it's possible to recover with a great shot.

One significant difference between the games is the ratio of driving distance to putting distance. Compared to ball golf, we drive half as far but putt well from twice as far out. Or more.

Another is the degree to which we can curve shots, in both directions. Hence, the more severe doglegs.

The principle of ball golf design we could use more is the requirement for fairway management, where landing in the fairway is not enough---there's a sweet spot in the fairway that you really want to land in, to set up the next shot.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:35 AM
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I like obstacles that challenge you on your next shot if you end up in them. Tall grass rarely does that, it just eats discs and breeds chiggers. Bushes are a totally different story for me, I've never complained about thick brush/bushes off the fairway and I think they're a good way to punish errant throws.
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Old 10-05-2010, 09:33 AM
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Grass is stupid does absolutley nothing to alter your shot and only creates a headache....in ball golf the rough changes your shot from a clean fairway drive to a bushwacking pitch....in DG it only backs up play and often costs you plastic
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Old 10-05-2010, 12:25 PM
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The optimist course in fort morgan CO uses (or used to) use stacks of downed trees (about 10'x6' and 2-3' tall) as fairway bunkers on the easier holes. You are forced to throw from a stand still when you have your leg between tree trunks.

Shrubs/bushes ect are similar to bunkers as well as they cause you to throw from a stand still. Pine trees near greens as well are common here. Forcing straddle, forehand and overhand putts on the green can make a easier hole tough.
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