Nature is Winning
10 Helpful / 0 Not
+ Very pretty course combining open and wooded holes
+ Three tees on every hole. Although the Blues aren't particularly long (6000') they offer some variety from the Whites - like sharper angles on doglegs. The Reds are very short (3500') suitable for newbies and families
+ Old Mach 2's that still catch, signage on every hole
- Playing it in late June, the course suffered from lack of upkeep. A few fairways were mowed but others were covered in almost knee-high grass. The throwing lines felt crowded by trees that have grown in the 20 years since the course was opened; thick underbrush borders most fairways. A lot of the holes are doglegs, so you're throwing blind and will likely spend a lot of time looking for your disc
- Tee surfaces are inconsistent: there are a lot of dirt tees, but then you reach a hole like #7 to find three poured concrete tees all in a neat row. Concrete tees scattered across other holes, but most often I was teeing from the dirt
- Hole #4 is in bad enough shape to merit being called out: Trees have grown in to completely obscure the basket, so much that I was sure it was a basket for a different hole. From the looks of it, the hole was originally designed with a "buttonhook:" throw past the basket, then turn around and chip back toward the tee up a narrow fairway
~ Layout is split into three sections divided by park roads. There's a fair amount of extra walking as you transition between the sections. You cross over later holes several times to get to your next hole, although none of the holes interfere with one another. The navigation includes arrows affixed to the baskets, and a good number of signs leading to the next hole, with additional signs if the tees are in different directions
~ No elevation to speak of; a lake is near several holes but doesn't come into play
~ Somebody put effort in to get this course laid out twenty years ago, and to try to improve it later with some poured tees. But Nature is winning. Ninigret might be better to bag in the winter when the growth is down, but there's still a lot of thorny rough to fight through. There's a decent course in a very pretty setting here, but it feels like its been left to fend for itself
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice Course Along the Coast
Pros: -3 Tee Pads on every hole, good for a wide variety of skill levels
-Good Signage, excellent next tee signage (on basket and other signage as well)
-Good mix of long/short, a few mandos to keep the longer tees interesting
-Long Bamboo Poles left near several disc eating trees
-Some really nice tee boxes in concrete and color coded
-Plenty of benches, even color coded with tee
Cons: -Red (Rec) Tees are really short on many holes (Including 99 feet on 18)
-Some natural or gravel tee boxes, still color coded well
-17 is oddly long, mando in the middle, and a huge hook to the right
Other Thoughts: Ninigret Park DGC is located in the sprawling park along the ocean near Charlestown, RI. The course is set up for almost any level of player with 3 tees per hole, all at the same basket. There is a good mix of left/right, long/short, but really no open holes to boom one out. You do get near a pond, but it doesn't come into play. The red tees run really short with several under 200' and the last at 99'.#17 runs really long (over 800 from the blue, over 500 from the red) with an odd mando in the middle and a long 180 degree hook to the right at the end. Overall this course is in good shape, especially with its age. The course sits in a mostly disc golf only part of the park. A walking/biking train runs near the middle of the course, but really only comes into play on #11. I enjoyed my round while on vacation half a country away from home. Worth a play if you're in the area, but I will probably not get a chance to play again.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
No Ticks On Me!
Pros: 3 tee pads per hole, I played mix of Blue/White. Signs were simple but informative. I generally like to navigate by link map, but hole #s are mislabeled. If this was the original layout, whoever redesigned it did the course a great service! Map was not needed as there are many signs showing you the right way to go. Many blind holes, which added a challenge. Some holes had no discernible lines, which added frustration. (A 400+ft hole should at least give you something other than close your eyes pray?) Mandos come into on several holes & are clearly marked. Baskets caught well & some had tall flag on top to make location easier to spot. Good mix of lengths.
Cons: Some of the multiple pads add nothing to the hole. Signs say ticks & skeeters are a problem but not on this cool fall day. Didn't really care for the multiple hard left & right turns. More luck than skill. The same can be said on some of the holes with no discernible lines.
Other Thoughts: With a few key trees removed on some holes I would rate this higher. Liked #17 with Green Monster Mando. Tough, long but fair hole. Don't think I would go out of my way to play it during the buggy season, but it was nice diversion in October.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Threw a few rounds here on Saturday morning 7/25/2019. Found the course to be well maintained and the layout very challenging but not impossible. Played the 1st round from the Blue tees and the 2nd from the Red tees. Both rounds were enjoyable and most holes really challenge your shot selection to stay in the mostly tight fairways. I have not played here in 8 years and I found the course in excellent shape with mowed fairways, better signage and improved tee boxes. Much nicer than I remembered and if the amount of players when I was there is any indication, the course is much more popular because in the past I would be the only person on the course.
Cons: There are the usual tick and mosquito issues but it wasn't a dealbreaker for me and the reason I carry bug spray. Not too much you can do in a public park about that. The signs warning of tick and mosquitos were a nice touch. The poison ivy and sumac in the fairways noted in past reviews was noticed but it wasn't the issue I thought it was going to be.
Other Thoughts: I enjoyed the rounds that I threw (not the scores so much lol) and if you are on the fence about playing here don't be, go there and throw! It is a tight course for the most part but short enough that most will like it.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Great area and well groomed
Pros: The layout of the holes and the three levels of play are very good. Holes that are not in the thick woods are very playable. From white and blue tees.
Cons: Holes 1-5 and 17 are completely hit or miss. With most of the time tree density too high to pick lines. Very frustrating.
Other Thoughts: Great job on the grounds crew.... takes a lot of effort to keep this looking great.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
I didn't have fun.
Pros: -18 holes of free disc golf in an accessible park with lots of other great amenities (playground, swimming, etc.)
-Three tees per hole
-Some concrete tee pads
-Some nice flora and fauna in the park
Cons: -The fairways are extremely tight and the rough is very unforgiving with thorns and poison ivy. Heck, there's even some poison ivy in the fairways. And ticks are a problem on the course according to the signs, although I didn't see any.
-Most of the holes are heavily wooded. My home course is a wooded course, but Ninigret was so wooded, the disc golf wasn't fun. On a good wooded course, the trees pose a challenge, but you can spot a line and go for it. That's not the case at Ninigret. There are so many trees that you can't do anything but throw and pray. Even on 250-500 foot holes, the best tactic is to throw a putter 150 feet off the tee and try to land at the foot of a tree. If you throw a driver, you're going to inevitably ricochet off of something and end up deep in the rough, which probably means poison ivy. I'm an intermediate player and perhaps better players would enjoy the challenge, but I am highly skeptical.
-Most of the wooded holes have fairways that turn very sharply to the right or left, so you cannot see the pin from the tee. Given the narrow fairways and bad rough, this makes for a round with too much disc-hunting. Plus, it's nice to be able to see the pin on most of the holes, so you can plan your approach and watch your disc soar. That's definitely not how the golf works at Ninigret.
-The few open shots are too open, making them boring and without challenge.
-No topographical changes.
-Some of the holes are just sad. Hole 17 is a par 5 with a very narrow fairway where you play around an ugly fence/wall, throwing 150 foot shots again and again around a sharp curve. If you throw a driver, your disc will be gone in the rough. This is not what enjoyable disc golf feels like.
Other Thoughts: I played about 7 holes on this course 3 years ago and was unimpressed. I read on this site that the course was "new and improved" since 2016 so I went back feeling excited.
I found that while more signs have been added to enhance navigation and a few concrete tee pads have been put in, the course had not changed in a meaningful way. If I were giving a rating to each hole, there are a couple I would give a 3.0. But the vast majority would get a 1.0 or 1.5. I suppose course regulars who have memorized where the pins are might not be bothered as much by all of the blind pin placements, but they would probably lose a lot of plastic regardless.
I'm sorry I don't have something more positive to say, especially because I visit the area regularly. It's clear people are devoted to the course's upkeep, but the shapes of the fairways greatly limits the potential for this course to be fun. For those of you looking to play in the area, the South Kingstown course is 15 minutes away and a much more enjoyably experience.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
The New and Improved Ninigret
Pros: 1. Defined fairways - The fairways here are really great. They are obvious varying from mildly wooded to quite open. The course has been really cleaned up in the past few years and is tended to religiously.
2. Great use of space - The holes aren't forced. Holes make sense. Mandos and OB places are not silly and use mostly pre-existing marks to be the mandos and OBs.
3. Tees - Every hole has three different tee locations with about half of them being concrete pads.
4. Signage - Walking this course is quite easy with signs on trees, on baskets, and on trails. Only one awkward transition from hole 3's basket to the tee of hole 4.
Cons: 1. Tees - Also as a con, only half of the tees have concrete and the other half are dirt. The designer, TM, is slowly but surely converting every tee to concrete.
2. Placement of holes 4 through 6 - These three holes are separated from the course by a thirty second walk going from 3's basket to 4's tee and 6's basket to 7's tee. It makes sense once you do it but can be awkward the first time.
3. Potential wind - Since this course is in Charlestown somewhat near a beach, the wind can pick up and potentially play a role in your shot.
Other Thoughts: The reviews from past years were deserved at the time but the course as a whole has been cleaned up so much since 2014. Fairways are mowed, weeds and trees cut way back, wonderful baskets, and a good flow of the course. Many complaints of course design are correct because of holes 4-6 being awkward but to me it didn't take much away from the course and understandably, the designer only had so much room to use. This course was designed to make the player achieve par, not play birdie golf, but there are definitely holes that are easily birdied if the line is hit well. There is not a favoring of RH or LH and the course requires all throws from all players. Hole 17 is a monster, literally, it has a funny Green Monster inspired mando and is a crazy long par 5 but definitely one of the signature holes on the course. This course overall is challenging, fun, and easy to walk. I definitely recommend it to everyone!!!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
The Only 18er in Rhode Island
Pros: Ninigret Park is one of only two (as of the time of this review) disc golf courses in the state of Rhode Island, and the only one with 18 holes at that! The course is located conveniently off the "Post Road" (US-1, the old postal route between Boston and New York before the Interstate Highway system was built). It was an easy pitstop on my way from New Haven to Newport. Each hole sports 3 different tees and they're color coded with red, white, and blue. The Red Tees make a short pitch & putt layout for beginners and kids. The White Tees make a good recreational layout and the Blue Tees will likely give many top pros a run for their money. Many of the multiple tees give a different perspective on a hole instead of making a longer version of the same hole. The baskets are in decent condition and detailed signage at each hole gives hole number, par, distance for each tee, and a color map. navigating the course is mostly easy and signage does help in trickier spots. The pacing of the course is well thought-out. A couple long holes at the start give way to shorter holes for most the rest of the front 9, while distances gradually increase to the climax at the mammoth hole 17. The style of golf here is very different from many other places I've played. The curves are much sharper on many holes and the fairways are tight. There is a lot of variety in in the types of shots here with a wide mix of left, right, and straight shots. Increased challenge comes from well protected baskets, bunkers, out of bounds, and mandatories. While there is little elevation here (Rhode Island is pretty flat) the designer has used the terrain very effectively for a challenging course.There is plenty of parking here and the locals are quite friendly.
Cons: The tees are not ideal. Several are constructed of sheet metal which does not have the same amount of give as traditional tee materials. The layout is wonky, as an be seen from looking at a map. Navigation between holes 11 and 12 is especially tough. Some walks between holes also put the player in the path of other player's discs. The course could greatly benefit from more tree trimming and probably a few trees could make the fairways a little fairer. Word on the street is that the course gets buggy and overgrown in the summer, but late fall early winter is probably an ideal time to play here. Many other nice amenities are lacking here (restrooms, running water, benches, trash bins, etc). Additionally the course is pretty tricky to find. The part of the Post Road where this course is is a weird stretch of divided highway without exits on both sides.
Other Thoughts: My sense is that this course has improved immensely over the years. Additionally, time of year can make a big difference in the playing experience here. Don't believe the negative reviews; this course is worth seeking out. Plus it's a good way to check the union's smallest state off your list. Hopefully, the state of Rhode Island will continue to grow the sport and develop more courses. I like the style of golf on this course and it would be great to see more courses like it with sharp curves, tight fairways. and low ceilings.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -3 tee locations (blues, whites, reds)
-Course has been much improved over the previous year.
-Unique scenery with low oddly branched trees and large boulders.
-Great diversity from hole to hole.
-Tight yet open fairways, trees and foliage are heavy on each side, but down the center is generally open field. Makes for a challenging yet fun route to the basket.
Cons: -A few teepads are still unfinished and have small boulders / roots that make it difficult to get a solid approach when driving.
-From the blues, several holes are nearly impossible to birdie. Makes for a pretty frustrating round. Whites are much more enjoyable.
-Chains are a little soft, they don't quite catch as good as they should.
Other Thoughts: I am very happy with the work that has been put into the course. Many of the tee pads for blues, whites, and reds alike have been redone with cement. Granted it is currently winter, I could still tell there has been work put in to thin out some of the fairways. I look forward to seeing how well it is maintained throughout this coming summer.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 2 Not
Poor Rhode Island
Pros: Nice baskets. 16 chain DGA baskets caught better than I thought they would.
There are some interesting shots on this course, for sure. The first 2 holes are very nice.
Decent navigational tools on the course, which is good. More about this below.
Cons: Where to start.
The tee pads on the course are a mess, outside of a couple holes. You'll find tee pads that are painted on roads, natural tee pads with large rocks and roots in them, a few concrete pads (which were nice, to be fair, with one huge trapezoid that felt completely out of place), and even large chunks of sheet metal for tee pads, which is quite possibly the worst idea in the history of tee pads.
Calling this course scruffy would be a slap in the face to all dirty hippies that pride themselves on being scruffy. Seriously, this course has potential, but a boatload of work needs to be done. Even on the "signature hole" (#17 with its craptastic Green Monster remake), it feels slapped together. I wonder if somebody wasn't just wandering around a junkyard looking for stuff to stick in a disc golf course.
The layout of this course is below average, to be generous about it. Holes seem to be just slapped in wherever they could possibly find any space. Several hole transitions lead you directly across other fairways. It's just a mess, especially since there seems to be ton of unused space in this park.
Several holes have ridiculously low canopies. Several other offer no line, even from the short tees. Cleanup and pruning would go a LONG way towards helping this.
Other Thoughts: The first thing I noticed when I walked up to the course was the course designer's name scratched off the information sign. That should have been a red flag...either somebody else was that mad, or the guy felt that bad about having designed this course.
If I lived in Rhode Island, and this was my only option to play, I'd probably quit. I genuinely feel bad for the locals that have to call this place their home course.
I'm rating this as a 2.0 solely on it having the novelty of being the only course in a state, and the untapped potential...although it would take a ton of work.
If you're like me, and HAVE to bag a state when the option affords itself, then go play it. Just remember, it's also at the southern end of the state...so you'll have to drive a bit to get there.
11 of 13 people found this review helpful.
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