8 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: After reading several reviews on here I only played this course because I was in Gatlinburg, TN over the Christmas holidays and it was the only course within reason that didn't take away time from my other activities. HOWEVER, once I got to the course I enjoyed myself. Sure, it is only 9 holes. Sure, it is packed tightly into a mixed use park. But it has a great mix of elevation that makes it an enjoyable quick play.
Hole #1 says 240 on the site and I think 255 on the tee sign. It is an open uphill shot with a little hyzer at the end with OB to the right. I throw a Buzzz about 275. Knowing that it was an uphill shot I laid into with about 90% power...I was still 15 feet short.
Hole #2 reminds me of some of the shots around here in Northern Kentucky. A hilly wooded shot that forces you to hit your lines. I threw a forehand for accuracy but I know the shot is a turn over thrown with a stable disc down the middle with that late fade right under the basket. My shot landed beside a poorly placed pic-nic table that could pose a safety issue but a strategically placed bush/tree made me miss my deuce putt and take a 3.
After I found #3 with the help of some nice ladies walking on the track I liked what I saw. Slightly uphill turnover with some OB to the left. Trees overhanging up the middle can snare your disc and cause you to hyzer out OB so I went with a forehand approach and made for an easy putt.
#4 was a great little hole. You have OB path right, left, and behind the basket. You have two nice trees making a choke point down the middle. I soft tossed a comet down the middle...still hit a few leaves on the right but not enough to slow me down. A few feet short but an easy putt.
I get to #5 and walk up the fairway to see where the basket is. 175 feet but the base of the basket is well above my head. I pull out a predator and go for a wide hyzer looking for a skip finish. I let loose and hear some talking...I accidently buzzed #6 teepad but I was parked on #5 basket...sorry guys on #6 tee...didn't see ya.
#6 is a downhill hyzer to a basket slightly out of view behind some trees. I looked for a point to throw a Drone with touch since this hole is only 195ft downhill. There was a piece of farm equipment and I aimed right for it...it hyzered just before and parked. There is some OB paved walkway behind the basket.
#7 was another uphill turnover shot with OB left starting early and OB right later on with OB behind the basket as well. Another case of if you hit something early to mid you are going to hyzer OB. I went with a forehand Predator to make sure I got to the 265 ft uphill basket and remained inbounds. I missed a 30 footer right into the cage with a BOINK!
#8 is a great hole. The tee sign shows it as being a relatively straight shot with a hyzer finish. At 270 feet...starting in as an open shot then going way downhill then back uphill and ending in the woods...I pulled out a Buzzz and threw a straight shot to the left of the center pine with a slight hyzer finish. When I get to my disc I notice the basket is still another 50 feet to my left and even further uphill. Next time I'll throw an overstable driver on a skip shot to help get it the rest of the way to the basket.
#9 was an insanely fun shot. Here you are standing on a 4x4 wooden platform staring straight down a hill to a basket that is a mere 165 ft away. It probably plays 90 feet away. This forces most players to do a shot they stink at...a putter off the tee shot with a 'firm touch'. If they baby it..it will hyzer way left. If they don't throw down hill...it will be in the road behind the basket. If their accuracy is off...it is smacking a large tree on either side of the fairway. If you come up a few feet short...you are in tiny little creek that is played as OB. I carry 6 putters and threw all six with every one of them being a deuce. I really enjoyed this teeshot.
Cons: I played on a 54F day on Christmas day a few days after a pretty large snow storm...followed by a rain storm. This course was very muddy and the steep banks were slippery as hell. This caused a few unsafe condition for most casual players. I saw more than one or two hit the ground...I tried not the laugh...but seeing they were ok...it's hard not to atleast giggle inwards. To be fair...I think the soils handled this much water better than most courses I've played would have.
Eventhough I read the warnings here and looked at the course map on the big board by #1...I still got temporarily lost going from holes #2 to #3 and from #6 to #7. A simple Next Tee sign would help. The walk back from #9 really isn't that long...I've seen worse..but it is long enough not to want to play round 2 when you get back to your car...so it doesn't flow well if you want to get in 18.
I thought the placement of #6 tee was a dangerous location when you got guys like me throwing big hyzer skips not knowing where the next tee is.
Picnic table placement on #2 is scary when you are throwing a 300ft+ wooded hole blind.
Other Thoughts: I really enjoyed myself and I don't think any of the holes were 'bad holes'. Usually I go to a place and atleast one hole is a 'stupid'. If you are in Gatlinburg and you need some alone time away from family and/or friends...drop by this park and enjoy a quick round. I'd much rather be here than holding the girls purse while she is dragging me around the outlet malls in Pigeon Forge.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Mills Park is a nice little park that offers a fun 9-hole disc golf course, as well as many other recreational activities for both locals and travelers.
The course uses MachV baskets that all look brand new and are in great shape, including a practice basket near the first tee. There are concrete tee pads on holes 1-8, and a small, wooden tee pad on hole 9. The concrete pads were a little small, but given the length of the holes, they were adequate. Each hole had a nice tee sign that gave both hole distance and an accurate layout. A large sign with course map was located at the first tee with a box that contained course maps and scorecard (I highly recommend grabbing the course map to take with you during your round).
Course Design and Layout:
The course offers a fun layout and some really nice holes, despite the fact that the park itself is so small, but course design/layout was heavily impacted by the size of the park, and all the other activities and usages of the park. Hole length is a little short, averaging around 230ft, and a couple of holes have a decent hike from the basket to the next tee (2-3, and 6-7), so it interupts the flow a little. No underbrush or excess foliage to deal with, maintenance on the course is good. Lastly, hole 9 finishes a long way from the parking lot near hole 1, there wasn't room in the park to loop back to the start.
Moderate elevations are present throughout the course, and utilized effectively. There is a great mix of uphill/downhill shots, and nice variety in right to left/left to right fairways. The course offers both open holes with little to no obstacles to clear and a couple more technical shots through the woods on 2, 8, & 9. Navigation was easy with the map, but would have been pretty difficult without it due to the spacing between some of the holes.
Some Fun Holes Worth Mentioning:
Hole 2: A very challenging fairway that sweeps continuously left to right along a right to left slope through a 25ft gap the entire length of the hole. The basket sits just outside a clearing in the trees at the end of the fairway. Hole 2 is by far the hardest hole on the course.
Hole 9: A neat little 165ft hole straight down a steep incline with a 20ft wide fairway and a small creek just in front of the basket.
Cons: Be aware of other people in the park with walking tracks and picnic tables near some of the golf holes, a few areas of the course could be a potential safety hazard to others in the park. The course is pretty short, and will not provide much challenge to the more experienced players. The fairway up to 8's basket and down to 9's basket is pretty steep with little to no grass. These 2 areas in particular were pretty slick, and made for some slippery conditions, a little difficult to walk here when wet.
Other Thoughts: This is the only course near Gatlinburg, so if you are in the area, this is the one to play. Otherwise, you are going to be driving roughly 45 minutes (with traffic) to the next course. This is a nice little park that has a playground with nearby pavilion, baseball fields, track, basketball courts, tennis courts, skatepark. A fun little course located just outside downtown Gatlinburg, check it out.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice recreational course in the hills
*Being in the foothills of the Smokeys, on the outskirts of town, there's lots of natural beauty. There's also lots of elevation changes with every hole going up or down.
*There's good fairway shape variety with 4 St/ 3 Lt/ 2 Rt.
*Some side sloping fairways (on 2, 5, 7) are a subtle feature that enhance the challenge of your shots.
*They've got the Basics covered well with excellent tee signs with maps, good concrete tees, and good Mach V baskets.
*There are several Amenities including score cards with a map, a good Mach V practice basket, and a large sigh with a map of the course.
*Hole 9 is a fun, tempting little ace run of 165 ft with a 40 ft elevation drop! I emptied my bag trying to hit one.
-Be careful of other park users on holes 2, 4, 6, 7, 9! Potential safety issues abound with many picnic tables too close to baskets and walking trails.
-Hole 9 ends far away from hole 1, so if you park close to hole 1 then you have a long walk back to your car. It's best to split the walk up by parking in between 1 and 9.
-There's a pretty long walk from basket 2 to tee 3, and tee 7 was a bit hard to find, so make sure to have a map.
Course Level = A tweener between harder Red or easier White. I'll call it White (most suited for Intermediate players rated 875-925), but holes 4-6 and 9 play as Red level It's a shorter recreational course where you could take the wife and kids for a quick round. (Hole lengths: 3<199/ 5 of 200-299/ 1 of 305)
Holes 2, 8, & 9 were cool enough all by themselves to make it worth another trip. I hope to be able to get in a round here every time I'm in Gatlinburg.
NOTE: Look in the "Links/Files" section for my files with Hole-by-hole evaluations, and a more detailed Overall review. You can also read more of my reviews and rating notes at the Yahoo Group, DG Course Reviews
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice Course to Play While on Vacation
Pros: My GPS took me right to the entrance of the parking lot using the coordinates off of the course main page on dgcoursereview. The course was about 5 miles outside of the main part of Gatlinburg. There was decent restroom facilities near hole 1, in the pavilion next to the practice basket. But beware, you will never be near this restroom facility until you are done playing and have hiked back to your car. The course featured very nice concrete tee pads and signs. I found most of the holes to be challenging and different enough to keep it fun. A few were pretty challenging to me, especially 2, an anhyzer in pretty thick woods on the side of a hill. The disc golf gods can be brutal on this hole if you hit a tree and roll down the hill. Finding errant discs shouldn't be a problem on the wooded holes as the undergrowth was minimal. Elevation was a factor on pretty much every hole. The park was well maintained.
Cons: The course is woven around football practice fields and there were tons of people and kids out there conducting practice when I played. There are a few holes where you have to be wary of people on the walking path. There was one hole though, I think hole 4, where we did throw towards the crowd, but as long as the distance of your throw is under control, it wasn't an issue. The layout of the course is my biggest complaint (although I hate to complain as I don't see how it could have been avoided. I think they did the best with what they had, and I'm always just thankful for a course that plays well since no course at all sucks the most), but in a perfect world, the walk between 2 and 3 and from 9 back to the parking lot is cumbersome, but if you play a lot of disc golf walking shouldn't be an issue, but DO grab a map at hole 1. Otherwise I don't see how you could possibly find all the tees/baskets.
Other Thoughts: I found holes 8 and 9 to be pretty unique and fun to play. I have never faced down (literally a hundred feet or so) a hole like 9. I would have loved to play the course again, but did not have time. I wouldn't advise driving from the interstate for the sole purpose of playing this course, but if you are in the area, definitely play this course as I found it to be very fun. It was a nice complement to all the other stuff we did while in the area.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is a fun 9 hole course that is well maintained in a nice park about 5 miles outside of downtown Gatlinburg. There is a good a variety of holes- each hole is unique from the other eight holes. And hole #9 is an especially memorable finishing hole. There is some elevation involved, but it is well used and not noticeable when walking.
The teepads, baskets, and signs are all in excellent shape. There is a big course map on the kiosk by hole 1. There are nice restrooms and a picnic pavilion near hole #1.
This course would be excellent for beginners and/or families. Experienced players can enjoy working on the short game and should have several opportunities for birdies and aces.
The course is very scenic as it is located in the Smoky Mountains. Views of the mountains can be seen behind tee #1. It is nice to have a course nearby if you happen to be vacationing in Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, or in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as the course is just a short drive from all these places.
Cons: The holes are spread throughout the park making a little extra walk between #2 and #3 and from #9 back to #1. This course is pretty short and not too challenging for experienced players.
Other Thoughts: Overall this a decent, fun little 9-hole course. The only water is a ditch on #9, not a disc eating hazard. Be sure to print off a copy of the map or really study the one on the kiosk to navigate the long walks between holes.
It is great to have a course nearby if you are vacationing in the area (which is a popular spot for people of ages to come all year round.) Definitely check it out if you are in the area. However, I would not drive out of the way to play it. It is a good ways off the interstate and the drive through all the traffic lights of Sevierville/Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg can take a long time. (It will take you much longer to get here than it will to play it one time!)
Be sure to follow the directions on this site (my GPS took me to wrong spot.) The course is a few miles out of town past all the touristy stuff.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 3 Not
Only if your in the area
Pros: Only disc course in the general area so its what you will have to play if you're near there.
The signs were well made and very clear. The park sign at the entrance contains the map of the course, which you'll need in order to find a few holes.
For what they had to work with, the park utilizes the available shots well. You won't have an awful time when you play.
The tee pads are concrete and were in great shape.
Hole number 9 is actually pretty cool, with a 45ft elevation drop down the hill and over a small creek. This is my only real takeaway from my round at Mills Park.
Cons: Only two wooded holes and most are wide open with a couple of trees around. All holes are pretty short (too short) however a couple of shots are pretty technical. You won't really be challenged to make shots.
Some navigation issues partly due to my lack of acknowledgement of the signs. Too much distance between holes 2 and 3. Be sure you have a map.
Other Thoughts: Don't get me wrong, the scenery is great and the park utilizes the space well, however it just felt lacking. Too many putter/midrange holes to be taken seriously.
I'd recommend playing it only as something to do while in the area (As if you needed anything else). Don't drive too far to play Mills Park.
4 of 7 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Short. Fun. Not too Shabby.
Pros: Given the available space, this is an amazing course. I'm impressed with the the quality of the holes the designers managed to cram into an already tightly packed park. #8 is one of my favorite holes ever: over a valley into the woods via an uphill dogleg. #9 I actually went back and played a few extra times. #'s 1,2,6 - really all the holes except 7 - are very nicely designed.
This course makes excellent use of elevation changes and has some good risk/reward options. Clean restrooms, water, and trashcans are readily available. The signs and scorecards are excellent, and the park in general is well kept.
Cons: However, as nice as the hole designs and ammenities are, the course has abysmal flow, and the cramped space means that you will be throwing around buildings, drives, and other park facilities. It feels at times like you are throwing through strangers' back yards. The walk between #2 and #3 is around 300 yards. The walk back to your car from #9 is probably twice that.
Other Thoughts: Leave some extra time to get to the park. It isn't in the heart of Gatlinburg and took a little while to find.
This is a recreational, 9-hole course. It's not run-and-shoot, but pars come pretty easily. If you have a big arm, you'll probably find Mills Park confining. But, given that most folks are in Gatlinburg for vacation, most visitors to this course will be pleased with a fun round of disc golf that has just the right level of challenge. I'll play again when I return.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Very Well Maintained. Very well Mapped. They have course program with map and score card on it. Hole #9 is one of the funnest holes I've ever thrown a disc on.
Cons: The walk between basket of #2 and tee pad of #3 is brutal. Then again, the walk from basket of #9 back to parking lot is almost 1/2 mile.
Other Thoughts: If in the area you must play it.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Really fun course to play.
The locals are nice
Good views of the mountains
Cons: Only 9 holes
Some of the holes are a good piece apart.
The course ends a little far away from the parking area.
Other Thoughts: Nice course to check out if you're in the area, but not worth travelling too far for.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: As mentioned, great view of the Smokies. Excellent use of trees, hills and ob's. Good mix of easy and challenging shots for both left and right handed players. Hole 8 and 9 definitely make the course.
Large course map near the practice basket was really helpful for a first timer. Each tee pad had detailed hole information. There were also flyers at the map which had basic DG knowledge, score card for four players, map, and rule for recreation play.
Cons: The walk from basket two to three is longer than normal on a DG course. Once you finish the last basket you have another long walk back to the parking lot.
I used a GPS to locate the course and it sent me to city hall. I asked for directions at city hall and they gave me country directions (big grocery store wasn't a big city grocery store it was a newer and nicer corner market). There were no signs on the main road to let you know the park was ahead on the left or right. My wife just happened to see a sign, similar to a historical sign, and we had to turn around to get to it.
Other Thoughts: My wife and I really enjoyed the course. It was her first time playing DG and was a very entertaining course to play on. The locals are friendly. If I'm in Gatlinburg again, I'll play the course a few more times.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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