10,000 ft of evil
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: you have to play this thing from the longs to really understand how messed up nasty it is. I for one just can't get enough of this torture when Im in the area. plus the longs give you all the hills . Hole one is mellow ,two is a really cool down hill . its when you get to hole 4 that it starts to get mean . Its narrow and 800 ft long with a drop off into woods after the basket . Hole 10 is off a cliff full of trees n bushes that look thick .it all opens up to a field but it does not look that way from up top by the teepad. after a couple hundred feet of field there is a gap going slightly up hill to a basket gaurded by three trees . till the end the course rarely lets up.
Cons: no complaints on this one
Other Thoughts: probably the most challenging wooded course in Michigan
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Baskets and Tee pads are excellent. Cement at the blacks tees and nice rubber mats at the blue and reds.
Talk about a variety of shots! great elevation changes, good mix between short and long holes, forehand, backhand throws.
You are able to get the drivers out and really hammer them on some holes. Pretty much get to throw every kind of shot at this course.
The setting is amazing and the park is beautiful.
Cons: Signage was a little lacking in my opinion. Had a very hard time finding the #10 tee because the sign for it was extremely faded.
Also it would be helpful if the tee yardage markers had a picture or layout of the basket location on the hole. Being a new player to the course I had to walk down a lot of the fairways to see the basket location before I could comfortably drive.
Other Thoughts: Played the from 9 from the Black tees. Needless to say my arm is feeling it today! The black tees are NOT for beginners. This is the type of course that can make a decent thrower look mediocre in a hurry. Very tight tunnel shots on most holes and strategically placed obstacles make this course one of the hardest I have played.
Worth making the trip up to Ludington to play.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Excellent hole variety featuring plenty of doglegs, tunnel shots, and a nice mix of short and long holes. Very well manicured fairways and great basket positions. Good signage made finding the next hole simple.
Cons: The back is much more difficult than the front, and a lot more "wild", so it can almost feel like you're playing two different courses.
Other Thoughts: The rough is a little beastly on a few holes, and can make finding discs challenging if you leave the fairway, particularly on the back 9. Spotters can be necessary, especially if it's your first time through.
We played from the cement "pro" tees, although we typically use the middle tees at other courses. I'd recommend starting from those, as they provide a substantially greater challenge and are obviously the tees that the course was built around. You may change your mind once you see some of the lines on the back, though!
3 of 5 people found this review helpful.
23 Helpful / 1 Not
Other Thoughts: This one feels the most like a northern Lake Michigan course, more so than the BBG combo at the Mason County Campgrounds. Everything here had an aged feel to it, which gave it a ton of character. Mismatched baskets are littered throughout, and sand is underfoot almost the entire time. The amenities are decent, and the signage is superb. Everything about this rustic, rugged course lived up to the mystique and has a charm that is unmatched in the area, right down the tilted, rusted practice basket.
Leviathan offers three sets of tees for the am, pros, and legally insane. I'm kidding, although the longest tees are truly some epic blasts. Concrete is only offered on these (black) tees, while the blues and reds are left to porous, rubber mats. And that's OK. Leviathan laughs at your puny arm. If you aren't man enough to play the blacks, then you don't deserve a concrete tee! The whole course really plays this way, and I felt like I didn't get the full experience by playing from the blues. The reds are for children/newbies, honestly, but it is nice that they have a tee the designers put them in so everyone can play. The best part about the multi-tee set up is that each one offers a drastically different look at the pin (for the most part). I dislike courses that have two sets of tees, where one sits 100 feet closer but in the same line of sight. I would say this three-tee layout is present on 90% of the holes, something that is very rare indeed.
The course layout is fine, offering 27 holes (18+6 bonus) that have exit lanes if you can't play the whole thing in one outing. (The course begins and ends at the parking lot; always a plus.) But the real treat here is the design of the holes themselves. I have never played a course that demands such precise and constant control. While there are some lengthy holes here, I found out about midway through that quality of placement far outweighs raw power here. You need to be on your "A-game" all the way through. There is just great risk-reward potential, but one false move will surely damn your round. While you might be able to come back from one hole playing like this, if you string a few together you might as well pack it in, because Leviathan offers no sympathies whatsoever. It is hole after hole of tough going and not for the casual player.
The course starts innocently enough, with some wide open fairways lined sparsely by wooded lines. My favorite series is Hole #5 through tight woods, #6 tunnel shot out into a big clearing that contains the pin, and then #7 back into the woods with a blind approach to the basket. Around #10 it begins to get hairy in a hurry. Tight fairways flanked by towering trees and brush make you feel that everything is closing in on you. It becomes tougher and tougher to hold the lines as you throw, as this optical illusion truly messes with how you gauge the shot. This really doesn't let up until the last two or three holes, and overall Leviathan left me with a feeling of unworthiness. It certainly didn't help that this was the last course I played on a three-day binge of Mason County, but I have a feeling my score would've been just as bad if we had played it first.
Leviathan may not be the "best" course in the Ludington area, but it is definitely the most professional. Serious golfers only, please.
23 of 24 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: Wow! Stop and look around! Michigan is cool! Really, really long holes! Tight tunnels shots. If you have a big arm or are looking for a headache this is the place! It's a cool place because it pushes you no matter your skill level.
+3 sets of tees so you can play the longs or shorts for a quick day
+I think it's hole 10? Awesome! Great elevation change over a sort-of cliff
+Great wooded tees that make you really
have to plan it out
+Risk vs. Reward here is awesome!
+Pretty good concrete tees on the longs
+Always have had scorecards available
+It really is one of the best coruse I have played for a mix of elevation changes, wooded shots and tunnel shots.
+Great course to play a lot of different discs
+One of those course where its really fun to watch other people throw because of the terrain and simply the possibilities!
+Easy to get to from the highway
+Lots of local places to eat / refuel
+I highly recommend playing here more than once!
Cons: Some of the holes are hard to figure out where to go if its your first time. I recommend playing with someone who has played here.
Other Thoughts: This is a course that the more I play it, the more I like it!
^Shoes with good grip,
^ bug spray,
^ don't forget to pay!
^ watch out for snakes!
6 of 14 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 4 Not
Mostly the same punishing terrain and topography - great challenge though
Pros: Lots of great wooded holes with excellent balance of right, left, straight, s-curve, long, short, etc. A few holes had some fairly wide open areas to really let it rip before punching back into the woods. Memorable holes do exist , and an example is #10 with a beautiful ridge to ridge throw across a picturesque valley. The elevation was gentle rolling wooded ridges, nothing too extreme or well placed risky greens with pins perched on sharp ridges. Overall I'd call it a long moderately wooded course, but the design and layout was very well done and stressed accuracy and control at both long and short ranges. Large trees generally limited flight routes, and despite being sporadic, the need to stay out of the rough meant you needed to keep careful control of your landing zone. The holes all had 3 tees for varying skill levels (some were shared at times). I think the recreational tees were appropriate for newcomers and those with much less skill and power, and the middle tees presented a slightly above average course for a blue level player. I believe the long tees would have been a great challenge for a blue player, stressing the need for accurate distance on almost every hole - a demanding round of golf (I regret not playing them).
Cons: Poor tees. So highly touted as a monster of a course and it has some crappy rubber mats 6' long for tees?! And they have bent rebar tripping hazards used for staking them in place?? So, in other words, the tees here suck. I'm not even the kind of person that complains about pads, and I don't even prefer concrete. Give me a big level patch of dirt and I'll be fine, and I won't complain that the dirt is slippery when it rains because rounds in the rain have all sorts of other drawbacks anyway. But these pads were an awful eyesore to such an overhyped course. They were not even level, and with a 6' pad, how could you expect anyone to stay on it, thus the runup and follow through areas were horribly eroded and that meant stepping up onto the pad and worrying about rolling an ankle off the front. Sure the course is tough. It's long, it's mostly wooded, it has some well protected greens, but maybe it's the horrible footing from the tees that make it seem so tough. The course is right in the middle of the city near a busy road and doesn't initially offer you a feeling of seclusion, but once you get into the park it's fairly secluded. The terrain felt monotonous with gently rolling holes scattered with large trees and fairway/rough defined by thick brush making up just about every hole on the course. The area of #2 was tricky to navigate - making your way from #1 pin and trying to figure out where to throw from and to for hole 2 was tough. Holes 2, A, and B are all holes that parallel one another across an open flat field area with a high potential for crossing fairways. Holes A and B are throwaway holes that offer nothing to the course. The small tee signs present little to no info, and the map poorly depicts intended flight paths on the holes so neither help much for navigation or throwing blind without any scouting. There was no water hazard, no huge downhill bomber, and no use of OB or mandos to force particular throws. Trash was visible all over the course despite garbage cans, I suspect this is because it is a well-used popular course. The baskets all seemed well beaten and abused, but still performed fine. I don't remember seeing alternate pin locations.
Other Thoughts: I played the "middle" tees here and heard afterward that they are actually the most haphazardly throw together, and that the long tees would have presented a much better hole design off the tee. I wish I had known that, and using standard color coding for the tees would have made it easier to decide. I probably screwed up by playing these, but oh well, it is what it is, and longer tees may have presented more challenge but not much more in terms of complete natural terrain variety and balance. I have heard tons of hype about Leviathan, but it fell short by a long shot. The terrain was mostly repetitive and the course was essentially all moderately wooded with a few heaviliy wooded holes scattered around. The property itself had some neat rolling ridges, but everything looked and felt the same. There was no balance or variety. You basically threw from the corner of a wooded or brushy area, out across a little less wooded area with just a few large trees, and up to an elevated or lowered green area with some dense rough surrounding it. I was less than impressed overall, but the design and appearance of the holes was indeed impressive. It is a very challenging course and requires some very accurate and precise play, both in terms of avoiding trees and rough, but also placing controlled distance drives in good locations for your upshots. But, I'm beginning to realize more what variety and balance mean to me and what makes a course stand out. I like to step up to a hole and be presented one particular route, not the ability to throw just about anything from my bag. Leviathan's design was mainly such that a large tree split the fairway (sometimes multiple trees split the fairway multiple times), but overall I was faced with being able to throw any disc from my bag in a number of ways, no holes required an absolute sharp short hyzer, or long drawn out annhyzer. With a fairly wide fairway, it really doesn't matter if you throw a rhbh hyzer or anhyzer as long as it stays generally toward the middle. I like holes that force you to maintain a flight line and if you don't, there is no reward (easy upshot), or you're in horrible rough on either side. I like courses that force multiple types of these throws (long hyzer, short hyzer, long anny, short anny). I just didn't feel forced to execute any specific shot, then I didn't feel rewarded for a good shot, and that's why it all seemed monotonous to me. You know, I want to step up to a short hyzer hole and pray I put my Gator in my bag. I threw the same gentle straight long range driver on most holes, because that's all I really had to do. Don't get me wrong, there were some narrow forced shots here, but not enough considering the number of holes. The area presents a variety of high level courses and for this alone Leviathan is worth a trip. Would I recommend someone go out of their way to play it, yes. Would I go back to play it again, only if I had extra time or was playing with a group of my closest discin friends on a trip. It scored a 3.7 in my sheet, but I'm going to round up. It's inline with the other 4-disc courses I've reviewed.
13 of 17 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Called Leviathan for a reason
Pros: This course is big and there are plenty of technical holes here. Plenty of the holes are long and not only long, but tight fairways. Believe the other reviews - this course is huge.
The Black/Blue/Red tee pads are well marked as well as signs to the next tee pads, with one caveat - listed below as a Con. Hole 2 was probably the only hole that I had an issue with - from the Pro tee, there could have been two pin positions and the map didn't help much. I ended up walking the hole to find which of the two openings had the pin placement.
Read a review after I had played that said not to start with the Pro tees. Wish I would have read that before I played. The black tees are monsters - 805, 792, 673 foot holes and plenty of 400-600 foot holes to fill in.
Threw from some of the Short tees in addition to the Pro tees. The Pro, Mid and Short tees all have completely different lines on some of the holes making this a much larger feeling course. I probably couldn't play this course twice in a day, but when I go back I would try a different combination of tees just to change things up. (And make it easier)
Lots of trees around, most of the holes have well protected baskets but good lines though the trees was able to nail some nice birdies from a long ways out. A few of the holes in the back of the front nine and most of the back 9 have tight fairways - only the long bomb holes are really open.
Cons: Being a big course there are some holes that are 'hikes' to get to the next hole.
In the 'mailbox' there were Pro and Mid scorecards. I wish those were combined. I grabbed a Pro one and completely missed ABC and DEF holes. Those are not on the Pro scorecard. The standard 'Next Tee' signs don't seem to take into account the 'extra' holes at all. I believe we followed the all the 'Next Tee' signs and never once ended up at any of the lettered holes.
Bag hooks and benches - no hooks present, but there were some benches around.
Have grown to like hole layout signs at the tees. This probably wouldn't work out too well they way they have this course laid out with the black/blue/red tees - but missed them here. The hand drawn maps are lacking in any detail besides general direction.
The Pro pads are concrete, but the blues and reds are mats. Played after the rain today and while the mats were not slick, having the benefit of concrete would have alleviated some concern of slipping.The mats are much shorter than the concrete pads too.
Other Thoughts: This was the first time playing - the Pro tee's were way too much for me.
When you first enter the parking lot - the lot looks kind of junky, almost was afraid to leave the car there. Being used for, it seems like only Cross Country and Disc Golf - it's probably pretty safe.
Fairly clean - a couple beer cans around that we picked up. Condom wrappers laying around the course, so something other than disc golf must be popular here.
Played 24 holes at Flip before this and wish I would have played the other way around. Loved this course though - wasn't expecting much after pulling into the parking lot, it was really deceiving. If the ratings weren't as high as they were, we probably wouldn't have even stopped. Well worth it.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 5 Not
put on your big girl panties...
Pros: Aesthetic--this is a beautiful course set in northern michigan old growth woods. That said, there is tons of scrub here that punish you for errant shots dearly. for gods sakes take the safety back onto the fairway!
Challenge--the challenge factor here is pretty high. not only is the course physically and mentally demanding, it makes you plan your next move before you make your first throw. Distinct landing zones on several holes add to the challenge factor. Think; severe dogleg 200ft down the fairway challenging.
Signage and routing--phenomenal. with three color signs leading to the three teepads (black, blue, red) routing is a breeze on this course. I will say however, the transition from hole #2 to ABC and #12 to DEF is a bit confusing. signs point you to the next blue and red tee (letters only have mids and shorts) and the black tee, but that is the black tee on the next numbered hole.
Distinct looks--not only does the course offer two to three tees on every hole, every tee has a distinct look at the basket. When I played, I played the mids (I was told I was crazy to do that the first time) but I found the mids to be fair par 3's or 4's most of the time. Distinct fairways (for different tees) on certain holes are a plus!
teepads--cement on the longs, rubber mats on the mids and shorts. all in decent condition with minimal tripping hazard. These could get slick when wet though.
Practice Basket--homemade but with a ton of ludington area history!!
Cons: Listed in the pros as caveats to the positives. Possibly the stink of the foundry on the back 9?
Other Thoughts: thanks to aikoadam and jim for guiding me, I will be back!!
7 of 12 people found this review helpful.
27 Helpful / 2 Not
Godzilla Hates Ice in his Cola
Pros: I'm often asked what the favorite course that I have played is. I usually answer with a vague "It's so hard to say, with so many great courses that I've played, but some courses that stick out are..." and Leviathan is usually near the beginning of that list.
This course has an awe factor that left my jaw down as I walked through nearly every fairway. Multiple lines to multiple landing areas. Fairways and lines that will challenge even the most advanced player while being fair enough to be enjoyable to most intermediate players.
Variety. Access to a variety of different types of shots with many different discs will help navigate each hole, none that feels like a repeat of another. Tight tunnels, doglegs, double doglegs, bomber holes, placement shots, ace runs. This course will challenge your all around game, physically and mentally.
Beautiful. Not only are the hole designs a thing of beauty, the area this course is set is a very enjoyable place to spend the day.
Mason County. Several worthwhile courses in the area can keep a traveler very happy for a long weekend, or give locals something to brag about.
Local Scene. Locals I came across were all friendly and helpful.
Tees. Pro/Am tees were all in relatively good shape for a "rugged" course like this, there is room for improvement on especially the lettered holes, but they all worked well for me. I only played the long tees, but the short tees looked great, when I return I will schedule more time to play both sets of tees.
Re-playability. As a traveler, this course goes right back on my list of courses I want to hit, I will go back again soon. I can only imagine how often I could play this course if I was a local.
Baskets. All in good usable condition, if in a little disrepair.
Navigation. Mostly intuitive, if slightly confusing in a few areas I was never frustrated and was able to find my way with a little detective work.
Only Disc Golf. Tucked away in a secluded forest, other users should rarely come into play.
Only $1. Really?! I'd pay more, especially if I could see the funds go towards some aesthetic/functional improvements.
If I could list 100 more "pros" I would, the biggest thing you have to know if you're reading my review wondering whether or not this course is worth playing, I personally cannot recommend it enough.
Cons: Rough. Though relatively well maintained, this isn't like going to the country club - expect a hike, bring a snack, bring some water, enjoy the experience.
Not for beginners. A beginner on this course could easily get discouraged. Or, if this was the course I learned on, I'd probably be disappointed by every other course I'd play.
Signage. Suffice this course well enough, but is an area for improvement. More next tee signs could help navigation.
Thick Rough. Use spotters if you can, especially on blind shots.
Other Thoughts: One of my favorite courses out of 500-some, this one is worth going out of your way for. Put it on your wishlist. Plan a road trip. Go play it. You will not regret it.
27 of 29 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 1 Not
Western Michiganís Supreme Disc Golf Challenge
Pros: Built on land that's particularly well suited to disc golf, Leviathan is set in a densely wooded forest on terrain that varies from flat to rolling, with significant elevation changes, and a few areas that play relatively open.
Great disc play and shot variety abounds here; wonderful balance of elevation changes and flat fairways, tight holes and some relatively open, as well as, left, right, and straight, holes with interesting lines and lots of aesthetic appeal. Clever hole design makes splendid use of this wonderfully wooded piece of property to force specific lines on some holes, while making you think twice about what line to take on others. Nice mix of distances as well.
Never have I seen Pro and Am tee pads which provide such COMPLETELY different disc golfing challenges. They genuinely serve to distinguish between those who those who have pro caliber games and those whose game is merely "pretty good." The longs genuinely provide a true challenge for top notch players, and are guaranteed to shred those whose game is merely "fair to middling."
The longs offer major risk/reward opportunities, requiring ample amounts of both distance and control. Leviathan rewards those who have controlled distance and can hit the landing zone. Uncontrolled distance will be will punished, as in "kiss your driver good-bye." Your first shot can really set your 2nd shot up nicely, or make the next shot tough indeed.
If you don't have a big arm (like me) or can't hit a landing area from 300-400 feet, stick to the short tees. They do a great job of providing significant challenge while keeping things fun, and even have a few ace runs to help you score well and get your heart pounding.
Can't overlook the fact that Leviathan is located near other exceptional courses; for DG Road Trippers, western MI is a must. But for sheer challenge Leviathan is definitely the crown jewel in the area...if you have the game for it.
24 holes provide lots of great disc golf with nice flow (for the most part), and a layout that's solid and balanced: supplemental holes A,B,C were plugged in with the front 9, with the flow bringing you back through the parking lot, before heading out to the back 9, where D,E,F are also located. Except for a few spots, (particularly around 1, 2, A, B, C) navigation was pretty intuitive... just follow the well-worn path.
Easy to spot from the main road with decent parking and a porta-potty equipped with hand sanitizer right in the lot.
Cons: Not many cons to mention, and those listed are almost certainly the result of budgetary constraints. Nonetheless, they are tangible, and can impact the overall experience of an outing here.
- Tee pads were inconsistent, and quite short for some of the longer drives.
- Tee signs are rudimentary and barely more than functional.
- Could have used "Next Tee" markers on the first several holes. Had to walk around quite a bit to hit them all and probably played them out of sequence.
- Risk of disc loss is high on some holes, but if you haven't figured it out yet; this isn't a course for beginners or the faint of heart.
Other Thoughts: To be honest, Leviathan's pro tees are simply more than I can handle. I found the shots required from a few of them to be simply jaw-dropping. However, I found the short pads to be a ton of fun while still providing ample challenge. In my opinion, this course really is not suitable for beginners, even from the shorts. It's likely to prove too frustrating for beginners to have fun.
Maybe it was just an exceptional day when I visited but I was surprised by the amount of the wind that came into play for such a wooded and secluded course. Had to disc up or down to compensate for wind on several holes during my round.
Thick brush on many holes virtually ensures you will need your "get out of trouble shot," so bring it with you. I refuse to call this a con, because it's part of the game and this course is obviously intended to reward good placement and punish poor placement accordingly.
This entire region, from Flip, north to the Mason County triplets, and up to Leviathan is the literal embodiment of "If you build it, they will come." Hats off to those who made this course happen and keep it maintained. I love the fact that the local DG community worked with local agencies to put this course in and maintain it. If ever there were courses where pay to play is worth it, it has to be this area. If not for donations, these places could never exist, so please; care for this place as if YOU were the one who had to keep it clean and maintain it. Any round here is worth far more than the $1 they ask, and all the upkeep, gas for mowers and trimmer cord costs real $$ (not to mention real work). I have no problem paying double... that's what a round at my local Metro Park courses costs, and I feel it's money well spent.
CAMPERS: check out Ludington State Park - 8 mi (15 min) NW of the course. Nice grounds with clean, private showers and good ammenities.
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
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