I attempt to write my reviews with the goal of helping other players determine the opportunity cost of playing that course versus other ones in the area. "If I have one afternoon to play a course in this city or town, which one should I play that's right for my skill level and preferences in a course?" That's the question I seek an answer to when reading others' reviews and that's what I attempt to answer in the reviews I write.
I believe that the average course rating across the thousands of courses in DGCR should be 2.50. I also believe that there should be more 2.5-rated courses than any other rating, followed by 2.0's and 3.0's, followed by 1.5's and 3.5's, then 1.0's and 4.0's, and then 0.5's and 4.5's. 5.0's and 0.0's should be exceedingly rare. (It should be a bell curve.) The average course rating for the courses I've played is 2.88, while *my* average rating for those courses is 2.47. In other words, I think there is some rating inflation in DGCR, but not much. Most of the rating inflation, in my opinion, is in the 2.0 to 3.5 range. There's not enough differentiation here. Some of the 2.0's should really be 1.5's. Some of the 3.0's are really 2.5's. But overall, as long as lots of DGCR reviewers continue to review, the ratings -- and especially the rankings -- tend to work themselves out. There is wisdom in crowds.
The factors I weigh when reviewing a course:
- Fun factor
- Variety (in distance, types of shots, hole design)
- Use of elevation
- Aesthetics of the course
- Safety (for other players, pedestrians, nearby cars, property, etc.)
- Course navigation and signage
- Bathrooms and other amenities
- Wow factor and memorable signature holes
My Favorite Courses = 4.0 or higher
Of my many DG course-bagging goals, a few are to bag as many top 25 national (none so far) and state courses as I can. So far, I've played 13 top 25 tracks in NC and 7 top 25 courses in other states (SC, TN, TX).
1. Buncombe Sports Complex #1, 101 feet, 2010
2. Isle of Palms #1, 94 feet, 1/1/16
3. Marcom Woods #9, 130 feet, 3/12/16
4. Eager Beaver #1, 197 feet, 10/6/17
5. Downtown Urban Open #4 ("The Gap"), 42 feet, 11/25/17