Already Best in Newark
16 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Licking Valley Church of Christ has done itself proud with the relatively recent installation of this safe, fun, scenic, and sometimes challenging course at the back of its property, on the slopes and woods adjacent to, and incorporating the creek ravine that runs all the way across the lot. A bold yellow banded practice basket sits behind the large, gravel, back parking area, and between the two nine-hole loops (front baskets have red bands, back nine are blue). In any condition but the frosty morning I visited, the large, level red paver stone tee pads look to grip well. The signage is excellent, with course flow being very intuitive with the exception of the need to turn immediately left up the hill after hole 1.
Well-suited to recreational to intermediate skill levels, the hole distances cleverly intersperse shortie ace runs (I counted four very aceable holes for my elderly arm) with five holes in the 400-500 foot range. No two consecutive holes seemed alike. There is a beautiful corral-fenced island hole, a basket raised on a pedestal (stump), a basket with an approach that makes you decide whether to risk the OB creek just beyond, and even the beautiful hole ten. Even with it missing a sign, the shot across the creek and up the hill is best aimed between the V trunks of a pretty tree (hmmm, as a Cincinnati area player, it made me think of a local legend…)
The folks who are landscaping this course continue to add upgrades including stairs and bridges, and appear to be working hard at ‘playing it in’ (meaning the way a well-designed course leaves as much healthy obstacles as possible, then clearing the ones that may turn out to make a shot ‘unfair, thus creating ‘fair’ways over time).
Cons: As mentioned, pavers do get frosty (muddy, mossy) a little easier than some other tee materials, so I hope they keep them clean over time. The course is new, meaning there are still some areas where stumps need a bit more cleanup, and some of the rustic log bridges appear to be destined for either future upgrades or will get a little slick underfoot. The only other concern I have would be the rough being really rough and thorny, such that the baskets that are tucked in tight can be pretty unforgiving for even an otherwise decent shot. Finally, I’m not comfortable with the big bomber finishing hole 18 having to throw across the baseball / softball field, but at least they ‘ribboned’ a branch above the ‘hidden’ creekside basket so you know where to aim your drive.
Other Thoughts: I had a very enjoyable time, and have now played all the 18-hole courses in this town, with this being my favorite. I’ll bring my buddy to check it out next time we’re in the area!
16 of 16 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Full 18 with Open, Wooded, Flat, moderate to Wooded Hilly & Stream. Prodigy T-2? Targets. Catch better then the T-1.
Challenging course for a beginner and the Intermediate. Guessing avg. Hole length 300'. Plays in a loop. Each loop has open and wooded.
Cons: As with all new wooded courses there more work continues. General cleanup and footbridges need attention and 13 to 14? Needs one. Maybe even steps?
Especially on going maintenance with old growth and spring storms.
Not all tees have signs. I believe all but 3 tees are made of pavers. Seemed solid and level. But will need edging to be kept in place
Other Thoughts: 20/30 minutes from I-70 & Hwy 13. As you pull in go straight back to the gravel parking lot. Behind the Single story white house is the green practice target.
Since it's on church property I'm sure everything is being done with donations and volunteers. Solid job!
If I'm in the area again in a few years I'll play again. Will bump rating a full disc when finished.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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