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Old 10-16-2016, 02:11 PM
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PBokor PBokor is offline
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Default Question for the Designers

I am very new to disc golf and have only played two courses since returning, so I have absolutely no useful personal experience. Watching videos is great for seeing how others play, but it is difficult to determine course layout from youtube.

That said, how many of you design your courses so that the front or back nine can easily be played separately (i.e. Tee 1 and Tee 10 share a parking lot)?

The reason I ask is because it seems to me that designing for an independent front and back would encourage older folks, parents with young kids, folks with limited time, etc. to play and would provide all of the benefits of a nine holer, while still accommodating those who want to play a full 18.

Thoughts? Comments?
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Old 10-16-2016, 03:31 PM
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DavidSauls DavidSauls is offline
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It's very handy, but designers deal with the land they're given. It doesn't always yield itself to a front-9/back-9 setup.

There's also the question of what compromises are made to have such a setup. Does the designer lose the best possible holes, to ensure two loops?

That said, there are some two-loop courses, and it's a nice feature. Not just for people who want to play 9 holes, but for stopping by the car or restroom mid-round or---if the course isn't crowded---for sometimes starting elsewhere from hole 1, just for variety.

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Old 10-16-2016, 03:49 PM
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@iDiscGolf @iDiscGolf is offline
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I agree it's nice if it works. Not if it's forced and there is too much compromise. I'd rather play a nice 18 vs. being able to return to the parking lot after 9 holes.

Also a issue that arises is on courses that have multiple parking locations people will start their rounds at various holes. In your case hole 1 or 10. This can be good and bad for flow and people playing the whole 18.

My old home course was a 27. We would all skip the front nine most of the time as that was were the rec players and people just throwing random directions played. And they would stop after 9 holes and leave. These were also more of the birdieable holes. So we would play the back 18 and swing around and then hit the front 9. At that course there was virtually no traffic ever, ever. So it lent itself well.

I am not a course designer. Just some input.
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Old 10-16-2016, 04:08 PM
biscoe biscoe is offline
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I start out trying to have 2 loops of 9- that often works out, sometimes it doesn't. As David said, you have to work with the land you've got.
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Old 10-16-2016, 04:34 PM
Gblambert Gblambert is offline
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Nine hole loops are the way to go, if the land allows it. In our case, the property we bought a couple of years ago is in the shape of a square. This made it easy to locate the pro shop, bathrooms, and event pavilion in the middle of the property with two nine hole loops starting and ending there. The front nine plays in a counter clockwise loop and the back nine plays clockwise to help provide a variety of shots.

From a course owner's perspective, this helps moderate backups on hole 1 as players have the option of starting on the back nine. It's also nice when players take a break after nine holes and visit the pro shop to pick up a replacement disc or grab a bottle of water and a snack.
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Old 10-16-2016, 06:32 PM
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I think the two 9-hole loops has a higher priority on longer courses over 6000 feet. Rather than always being locked into two 9s that loop back, I'll try to loop near the parking lot area within the first 6-7 holes so players have a chance to get back to their car if they forgot something, need more discs, drop a jacket, drier socks, etc. And, if I know it's property that doesn't lend itself to looping back in 9 or possibly not at all, then I'll look for a crossover point where players can play some sequential holes on the front and back to play a full 9 such as 1 thru 4 then crossover to 14 thru 18.

My best example of these two ideas is the Steady Ed course at the IDGC where the hole 10 tee is almost as far from the start as possible. However, you get back near the start after holes 2 & 4. Then, many who have played this course may not have realized you could play 1 thru 5 then 15 thru 18 for what we call the Roller Coaster 9 which includes some of the most elevated and scenic holes on the course. We now have a 27-hole scorecard there for this special 9 plus 9 holes each on the other two courses so those on a tight travel schedule can play 9 on each of the three courses.
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Old 10-16-2016, 09:49 PM
John Rock John Rock is offline
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The course here works kind of like the 2-loop layout. After Hole 7 you can cross over to #15 then do #18. Good if you only want to do 9 holes but not so good for 2 separate loops starting from the same parking lot.
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Old 10-17-2016, 10:36 AM
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esdubya esdubya is offline
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About to drop baskets in to a new course that is specifically designed to have two 9 hole loops. I even got to do a clockwise front and a counter-clockwise back for symmetry. This is on a former ball golf course, so the loop back is also a slight homage to that legacy.

I think the general public is used to this layout because of golf courses, but does it always need to apply to disc golf? Not necessarily.

But, it all depends on what you have to work with as far as the land. Bottlenecks in the property will make it difficult to loop back.
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Old 10-18-2016, 09:31 AM
BuzzSharpe BuzzSharpe is offline
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I know that it's redundant to just agree with David and Biscoe, but they are correct. A designer has to take what the land gives him or her. The two nine hole loops concept is optimum and should always be considered in laying out a new course. We were able to implement it to a decent degree with Springwood, though some maintain that it wasn't good or close enough. But as PDGA member #1576 says, every disc golf course has its detractors.
We did accomplish it pretty brilliantly with Johnson Street.
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Old 10-18-2016, 11:20 AM
Dana Dana is offline
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[QUOTE]I think the two 9-hole loops has a higher priority on longer courses over 6000 feet. Rather than always being locked into two 9s that loop back, I'll try to loop near the parking lot area within the first 6-7 holes so players have a chance to get back to their car if they forgot something, need more discs, drop a jacket, drier socks, etc. And, if I know it's property that doesn't lend itself to looping back in 9 or possibly not at all, then I'll look for a crossover point where players can play some sequential holes on the front and back to play a full 9 such as 1 thru 4 then crossover to 14 thru 18. /QUOTE]

I've got a course that will be opening up in the next 2-3 weeks (6200 ft.) in which 9 hole loops couldn't happen, but you can "crossover" after hole 7, 10 or 11.
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