Nothing but Plain Pleasantries
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: An unobjectionable, sparsely wooded course with decent elevation and lots of views of the Tennessee River.
-Amenities: Turf over gravel tees are okay if a little uneven, grey Chainstars (what is Chattanooga's obsession with these baskets?), good tee signs with maps and distances, course map at the kiosk. Enough benches, I think.
-Views: The water will only come into play on a terrible shot, but it sure makes for a scenic backdrop. This is a course that is actually literally on an island--enjoy almost constant views of this spacious section of the river.
-Beginner Friendly: The length is enough that they won't shoot even, but this would be a nice place to introduce newer players. It's pleasant and you can recover from an early tree without being totally dull fields.
-Shot Shaping/Gameplay: A very typical shaping course that receives a boost from gentle elevation throughout. Every hole is basically the same environment--sparse large trees that suggest a wide fairway but allow for a lot of flexibility. With the exception of (9), every hole here is entirely scramble-able due to this spaciousness. Some easier ace runs under 250' are balanced with longer par-3s needing a touch more juice and forcing you to consider the OB walking path that winds throughout the island. Two par-4s are out here, with (9) being the star hole for its tricky approach to a small, wooded green near a steep dropoff. (15) is also a memorable hole, a gentle 350' downhill towards the water, and (10) is the quirky hole, a steep downhill and sharp right that's deceptively difficult.
-"Friendly": My label for the combination of easy-to-play, navigable without a map, well kept up, and hard-to-lose-discs.
Cons: Though Dallas Island is a pleasant park, it lacks any unique features or compelling variety.
-Length: Only one hole tops 400'. This prevents anything particularly interesting from happening on the fairways.
-One Environment: The foliage/biome doesn't change throughout. Again, combined with the length, this makes one hole feel like the other and doesn't leave you impressed or with a feeling of accomplishment.
-Multi-Use Hazards: The first is the omnipresent walking path. Expect to pause several times during a round for walkers and joggers to pass. The second is RV plots. There weren't very many vehicles when I played, but during busier months I could imagine quite a few RVs out here that you'd have to be really careful to avoid.
Other Thoughts: Dallas Island is a solidly Typical course with the added pros of a little elevation and constant views. It's right on my border of 2.5 and 3.0, and for now I've followed my rule of rounding towards the middle when I can't decide. It's exceedingly pleasant to play, not a destination course, but one that should get a lot of good use from locals.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Scenic and Fun 18
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course at Dallas Island is perched on the central portion of the island and though you can see water on about 10 of the holes in the winter, it never really comes into play.
This is a semi wooded park style course with a lot of road OB and good amount of elevation.
The tees are turf and mainly pretty nice, and the tee signs are accurate and descriptive for the most part. There are benches on every hole and navigation is pretty easy even the first time through.
Baskets are chainstars, which aren't my favorite but are in good shape and I only had one cut through.
Course requires some shot shaping and and good ground management as the greens often have Some slope.
Only two longer holes, 9 that is an iffy par 4 and 15 that is a legit long booming downhill shot.
Great course for your average groups and it's not a slayer. I shot -8 first time out and could probably get a few more now that I know the lines
Cons: Cons are not plentiful but they do exist. The amount of road OB means there are a lot of pedestrians and some cars, and in nice weather I bet it is very crowded. There are also camper hookups along the back 9, often very close to some baskets so I bet it leaves a few holes unplayable when there is a crowd.
Some lines are not as interesting as they could possibly be, could be tweaked to make it a 3.5 IMO.
Other Thoughts: Overall a very fun course and worth the play, and in many ways even better than the more popular and difficult Sinks.
It's natural beauty and terrain give it points as well as the fact that it was clean and well kept.
I was lucky enough to acquire a local guide after a few holes and he was most helpful in learning the course.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Views from the Island
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Aesthetic: This course and the surrounding lake offer some very pretty views. Many holes are central throughout the island, providing just views of the trees and campgrounds, but the holes on the edges of the island overlooking water are beautiful!
- Tee Boxes: Although tees are controversial in disc golf today, personally I'm a fan of nice and clean tee boxes regardless of the material used. Dallas Island has one tee box per hole made of short artificial grass.
- Signage: Best tee signs in the Chattanooga area! The signs here at each hole are colorful and informative, plus there is a small, red arrow sign on each basket pointing to the next hole's tee box which is tremendously helpful.
- Shot Selection: Decent mix between forehand and backhand drives throughout the course. I do wish there was more variety in hole design and terrain, though.
- Terrain: Little to no brush and low-lying terrain on most holes. Other than the leaves you'll find on the ground, there's very little for a disc to skip behind and get lost.
- Flow: It's very easy to find each hole's basket and the tee box that follows. It can sometimes be a small headache when you cap off a couple great throws with wandering around trying to find the next tee, and fortunately that doesn't happen here at Dallas Island.
- Crowd: I played during the middle of the afternoon on a holiday with great weather and I only saw a couple other golfers, so I can imagine that crowds stay relatively light or nonexistent which is a big plus!
Cons: - Baskets: Dallas Island uses somewhat old Chainstar baskets, which will lead to some untimely spit-outs. The lucky catches that you get with the nicer Prodigy baskets at other area courses won't happen often here.
- Hole Length: As you can find on the Hole Details page, most holes at the park are between 200 ft. and 350 ft. with all par 3's excluding two holes. One general critique of many area courses is too much consistency with hole length, which is worsened with less variety to terrain and landscape.
- Challenge: Dallas Island will offer some moderate challenge to beginner and intermediate players, but for more advanced golfers this course may be nothing more than a walk in the park (literally).
- One Tee & One Basket: One improvement that could be made to this course would be adding an additional tee box or basket to each hole. I'm not sure which would be ideal given the amount of space at the park, but only one tee box and one basket can become rather routine.
- Campers: As you'll read on most every tee sign, be weary of nearby campers, walkers, and runners. A concrete path lines almost every hole, so depending on the amount of campers at the site, you may have to wait a minute or two to tee off.
Other Thoughts: Thus far, Dallas Island and The Sinks are my favorite 18-hole courses in the Chattanooga Area. If you're looking for a fun round in a beautiful area, look no further than this course at Chester Frost Park. All in all this course is above average, and the improvements that could be made include adding an extra tee box or basket and moving the baskets around to add a little more variety. I look forward to coming back to Dallas Island in the future, especially during warmer months. Highly recommended for all disc golfers in the area, a must-try if you haven't given is a shot yet.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Beautiful location and setting for this park-style 18 hole course. The park (Chester Frost) and island (Dallas Island itself are super scenic and the drive just to get to the course is worth something with water (Chickamauga Lake) on both sides.
The course itself is a good intermediate parks course. Challenges include trees to weave around, decent elevation variance, and a moderate range of distances. Designers achieved a nice amount of non-repetitiveness. And there are a few holes that really stood out- #9 long uphill with basket protected by a huge fallen tree, #10- short downhill sharp dogleg right, #12 with its length, and #15 playing downhill.
Tees, signs, navigation all up to standard expectations. Plenty of parking.
Park looks like a pretty fun place featuring all kinds of activities: disc golf, swimming, camping, boating, fishing.
Cons: Most obvious con is that parts of some of the fairways are literally bordering camp sites with no buffer. It seemed that these sites maybe were not used as much, but still a chance to be a little crowded and weird during peak camping times.
My first time here I was challenged by the posted distances feeling "wrong" due to the elevation, and I left several shots on the course. However, if I played here a few more times, I would quickly make adjustments and I feel the course would become relatively easy after awhile. (don't get me wrong, I love playing this style, but it is the primary reason for my rating of 2.5 average)
There is road winding through the course bordering many holes so you have to be on the lookout for cars and walkers.
Though surrounded by water, it is not in play at all.
#1 tee location is not immediately obvious. The first thing I saw after parking was #4's basket. But walk down the narrow road (look at map on this site) to find the kiosk with map and first tee.
Other Thoughts: This is a really nice addition to the Chattanooga disc golf scene (where 9-holers outnumber 18-holers). It is a nice contrast to the more heavily wooded The Sinks, and is just a short drive from there making for a nice 36-hole day pairing. I would rank Dallas Island 2nd in the area behind The Sinks and I would definitely play here again when in the area.
I think every city should have a course like this that is playable by all. The fairways are generous and most holes aren't too long, not difficult but not boring, so good for new players to intermediate players. Families camping here could enjoy playing a casual round, so the course is well-suited for the location.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Beautiful park setting on an island, a few deer came out to watch us play. Nice quiet setting where you can have a great walk during your round. Very well maintained, great setting.
Ample ace runs.
Cons: Depending on where the RVs park you could be playing around some folks who are camping.
Holes are generally short and not extremely challenging.
Other Thoughts: Great place to go to work on your mid-range and controlled drive game.
0 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Dallas Walker Island Ranger
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course is located on a little island in Chattanooga with a little slope to it. There were only 16 holes available when I played, but I still very much enjoyed my round.
The holes were all just pleasantly designed with nice lines that make you shape some short lines and long lines. There are enough trees to dictate a fair shot but punish you lightly if you miss it. Only a couple holes flirt with some denser underbrush. The distances were all short to reasonable, even the long ones were great distances to be reachable for a birdie, or par-save when dinked off a tree. Variety was also great on this course. I had to use most of the discs in my bag on just the 16 holes I did play
Tee signs and tee boxes were DiscGolfPark style. I don't think it was an official brand, but the signs were great and the turf pads I can't imagine being slippery ever. Baskets were Old school Chainstars, and caught pretty well.
The course is very easy to follow, i only had to use a map when I got a little mixed up at a few tees being close together, but definitely just a first-time player problem.
Cons: Not much. There just wasn't a lot of room to really spread out without putting some of the campgrounds in danger (they are already a little close on a couple holes, within bounce-off-tree range, or massive griplock range).
The tees are a little lumpy now as the ground has shifted underneath the turf.
Other Thoughts: This course seemed pretty popular with the locals for obvious reasons. It's beautiful, it's well manicured, and it's challenging but fair. I was driving through, and this course was more out of my way than I thought, but it was definitely worth the drive.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Great little course
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Great lightly wooded course nested inside the campgrounds. Great use of the available terrain and refreshingly challenging.
The basket on the 9th hole is nested behind a large fallen tree, but still an easy par 4. I was impressed with gravel tee pads covered with astroturf. I am curious how they will last.
Cons: Hole 11 was closed due to construction, we used 13s basket for and ace run alternate.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
I'd suggest a few changes...
Pros: - A variety of shots available for RHBH/RHFH
- Respectable hole distances (average around 250', some holes around 400')
- A new 18 hole course in Chattanooga!
- Pretty easy course layout to follow with very adequate signage and parking available
Cons: - I think hole #6 was missing?
- Hole #9 being behind a downed tree (and in front of a drop-off) is questionable layout decision and it was difficult to find. It's a long hole uphill, move the basket 15' closer to the tee for a more rewarding experience
- Hole #10 had a fenced off area around a building under construction, which was seemingly in the middle of the fairway. So I didn't bother throwing this hole.......
- .......which resulted in me skipping #11 because #12 tee was near the #10 tee
- Busy with non-golfers
Other Thoughts: I appreciated the new course, but I'd prefer to play disc golf courses that FEEL like disc golf courses. This course is a part of the campground, and it feels exactly like that. A number of non-natural obstacles like tents and cars and buildings were impeding the area of play, even it it was considered OB. Perhaps in the cooler months when less people are visiting the campground, I'd play it again, but it's also about a 35 minute drive from where I live in town, so I don't think it's worth the trek more than once or twice a year or for a special occasion. Perhaps if it was a 20 minute drive, I'd want to play it more often, but there are a few other courses in the area (The Sinks, Camp Jordan, Jack Mattox) that offer better disc golf experience.
I'm hoping the issues in the Cons section are considered in the future, along with a re-leveling of the tees.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 0 Not
The Chick-fil-A Of Disc Golf Courses.
Pros: (2.846 Rating) A light to moderately wooded park style course with some good elevation movement.
- FUN FACTOR - I have a feeling that Dallas Island is going to be local utility favorite. There are ample opportunities for birdies. Errant throws are rarely further punished. The odds of losing a disc is near zero and for the most part, no searching in overgrowth areas. The course flows pretty smooth as well.
- RECREATIONAL FRIENDLY - This course is perfect for players learning the game and no doubt will produce some new disc golf addicts. At 5,000 feet, this course will definitely please recreational players offering just the right amount of length and mild technical challenge.
- CHARACTER - The basics are sufficient. Adequate Chainstar baskets and bumpy but passable turf tees. Word is that they are going to re-level the tees after the current grade below them settles. There are benches at every tee too. Dallas Island also has a bunch of typical park facility amenities. Shelters, restrooms, vending machines and even camping is available. Also a kids playground, which is how I talked my wife and daughter into making the trip here. Missing items include no multiple tees, no alternate basket placements and no practice basket.
- ELEVATION - Could have been awesome, but still really good. Hole (10) is a wonderful downhill right hooking shot. (15) is another nice down play where a Recreational player will feel like the Hulk when their mid range eclipses the 300 foot mark off the tee. From studying the topography maps, the elevation hits about 35 to 40 feet down on those two holes. I'd stay another 5 or 6 tee shots play up or down around 20 feet in grade.
- NAVIGATION - There are arrows tied below every basket which made this course a breeze to navigate. The only drawback being their flimsy nature, and a few likely won't make the end of the year. Fingers crosses that the park staff or a kind volunteer maintains them. Also note, hole signage does not indicate next tee direction and there was no posted course map on site as of April 2019. The course map link on DGCR appears to be accurate as of this review. Despite the moderate elevation, this course is very cart friendly.
- NATURAL BEAUTY - On an island between the Tennessee River and Dallas Bay. The backdrop views on this course are impressive and constant. The grounds are very well maintained and mowed. Holes (8) and (9) were my favorite in terms of beauty because they overlooked the steepest slope and they had the fewest man-made objects in view. In addition, hole (9) is punctuated with huge downed tree guarding the basket. Overall I scored the course roughly 65 percentile. Drawbacks being the numerous buildings and RVs in view. There's an eyesore on (14) with the basket adjacent to a chained link fence housing utility equipment. Finally, I personally don't find park style courses as beautiful as heavily wooded courses.
Cons: A solid Recreational course that should please a majority of the locals. My cons are either preferential issues or extreme ticky tack stuff.
- SPACING - About average. A couple fairways edges feel partially shared. Discs will occasionally end up in other fairways. Lots of fairways parallel walking paths, and during my round I waited 4 or 5 times to tee off. Overall a very minor issue.
- HOLE (6) - Walking up from a 100 feet away and seeing the tee on the bluff edge, my mind started playing Rocky montage music. "This is going to be awesome" I thought as I could start to tell the direction was down the steep slope and along the water. When I got to the tee there was no cut fairway down this epic landscape. I had to play the hole 180 degrees in a different direction. Total bummer.
- LACK OF CHALLENGE - This course is set up perfect for lower end Recreational players. I personally felt underwhelmed by the challenge as an Intermediate level player. Several Advanced players I know would be displeased by the challenges presented as well. Way too many light obstacle holes in the 200 to 300 foot range. Substantial shot planning and shot shaping is only a requirement on one or two moderately wooded holes. Throwing long isn't a requirement either. The longest par 3 is 363 feet and its way down hill. I could see a 950 rated Advanced player averaging 10 down or more out here. A second set of tees on a few holes where space is available should be considered.
Other Thoughts: Busy... A common misconception is that if a course is busy it must then be a great course. McDonald's is busy, Subway is busy, Wal-Mart is busy. Courses, and places in general, that are busy are often so out of convenience and ease of use. Not because they are a can't miss. If I were to give Dallas Island a 5, it would be a slap in the face to numerous amazing courses in Tennessee that I've played, such as Harmon Hills, Cedar Hill, Panther Creek and Bud Hill. Dallas Island is the Chick-fil-A of disc golf courses, not a Ruth Chris. This is not the place you send an out of towner traveling to the area to experience the best the area has to offer. I have a feeling that a lot of players in the Nashville, Atlanta and Huntsville areas have recently put this course on their wishlist, as the course is getting a glowing review start on several apps and websites. I finished my round up with 5 other players, (four from Dalton GA and one from Hixson TN) and I was sure to ask them their thoughts as we finished up the last six holes. Their answers to the best course in town? The Sinks, Sinks, Sinks, Sinks, Sinks. A couple even said their second favorite was Camp Jordan when dry. Again, nice course with great utility and perfect for local leagues. IMO, not a regional destination course like the Sinks. Reminded me of courses like Winchester City Park and Woodland Park in Tennessee.
- TIME PLAY - This is already a popular local course, so despite the short length and easy navigation, foursomes are still going to average close to two hours.
- UNIQUENESS - About average for an 18 hole course. As stated above, this is a park style course with a mix of lightly wooded to moderately wooded holes. Only a couple holes have a modest technical aspect to them. There are a couple nice blind basket plays on (9) and (10). As noted in the pros, a good mix of elevation. Despite seeing a lot of water, it never comes into play. There are two short par 4's on the layout that the big armed Advanced players could deuce.
21 of 21 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 4 Not
The course Chattanooga needed
Pros: Top notch course for the amount of land provided by the county.
A course close to Chattanooga that has elevation.
Good variation of shots required throughout.
Mature trees throughout which will provide a good amount of shade in the summer.
Cons: Super busy usually (although that isn't technically a bad thing)
It will have to be pulled out for roughly three weeks every year due to the Hamilton County using the grounds for the County Fair.
2 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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