6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Rugged course with a real "out in nature" feel to it. Plenty of elevation gives you plenty of love-it & hate-it moments.
- Golden Hills is a true wooded course. Hole #1, 2 & 18 are the only open/grass holes. From 3 - 17, you are in the forest.
- Some solid hole layouts. Elevated holes? Check. Doglegs? Check. Tight holes? Check. Risk/reward holes? Check. Holes that you'll score too high on due to disc rolling down hills or taking crazy bounces off trees? Check.
- Elevation changes is definitely the course's identity. There are some crazy up & downhill shots, highlighted by #3's 63 foot drop from tee to basket. You're essentially throwing straight down from the tee, and you better be accurate or your shot will sail away. A couple other holes have good elevation changes, all of which feel more extreme than they really are because the holes are so short. There's also plenty of walking up & down hills between holes, so you're going to get a good workout. The elevation also leads to the rolling disc factor. It's pretty frustrating watching a disc roll down a hill right back at you.
- This a technical course with premium on accuracy over distance. Average hole length is only 230 feet, with only 3 holes at 300 feet - and 2 of those are the open holes. 10 holes are 215 or less, but if you can't throw straight, you're still going to be scrambling for pars.
- Three layouts, with the shortest at under 2500 feet - less than 140 feet a hole. From the short tees, it could be one of the most enjoyable ace race/skins matches you could play. Plus, it's great for beginners.
- Course gets plenty of play. Playing on a Sunday afternoon, saw plenty of large groups (4+ people), mostly college students. Judging by other reviews, seems to be crowded almost all of the time.
- You're definitely in nature here. If it weren't for the constant sounds of traffic, you'd really think you've drive way out into the mountains, away from any cities.
Cons: Would have liked to see a little more length on the wooded holes. With the exception of several holes, the average player is only going to need a mid-range disc and/or putter for most throws. Having a longer, par 4 or 5-type hole forcing people to throw 1 or 2 long shots would have presented an added challenge.
- Luck factor comes into play a little too much compared to most courses, even other wooded courses. Playing with a buddy, there were times we'd throw what'd was pretty close to a perfect shot, only to have it take a crazy bounce off a tree or roll down a hill. Then there were other times we'd throw a poor shot, have it hit a tree and land in birdie range.
- Overcrowding can be a problem. And from what I saw, the people playing were casual players at best. Expect some slow rounds, and/or having to ask to play through during busy times. If the course is this crowded, and that popular among students, seems to me the obvious solution would be to build another course in the area.
- Some basic maintenance could be in order. Some of the stairs needed to be fixed/improved on a couple of hills. Walking down the hill on #6, the steps were too narrow and/ much higher than the ground around them. You were more likely to trip trying to step on them, instead of stepping over them. Seemed to be an erosion problem more than anything else, but still, it's a possible risk. Also, didn't notice many, if any trash cans on the wooded holes. Tee signs were fading.
- There were no amenities at the park. No bathrooms, only one port-a-jon, or water fountains at all.
- And the obvious disclaimer. If you don't like wooded courses and/or are out of shape, this is not the course for you. Unless you just want to play the open holes - #1, 2 & 18 - then you'll enjoy yourself.
Other Thoughts: This was a solid course. It just seemed to be missing one or 2 truly great/longer holes to give it a solid punch. It reminded me of one of those scrappy teams in football, basketball, baseball, etc. that was just missing that 1 or 2 key pieces/superstars to go from a good team to a great team. Compared to other wooded/hilly courses (Hilton in Hickory, NC & Timmons in Greenville, SC) it was just behind them in overall challenge, but right up there in the fun factor.
- There could have been a little more use of elevation, instead of wasting a lot of it on walks between holes. A few too many flat holes, with the elevation behind, or to the side, of the basket/fairway. Now I did enjoy the flat holes that had the elevation drops between the tee and basket - as perfected on 17.
- It's definitely a risk/reward course. It'll let you know real quick just how on your game/accurate you are that day. If you're aggressive, throwing straight, and a little lucky, you will see a ton of 2s, or better, on your scorecard. If you're playing conservatively, or if you're off your game, except to see a lot of 3s & 4s on your card.
- A few holes stood out to me - #4, 13, 14 & 17. All four are tight fairways, #4 is uphill, the others are relatively flat with drop-offs between the tee and basket. The tight, but fair, fairways present you a chance to go for the basket. #17 reminded me of #18 at Hilton, with the big drop-off being woods compared to Hilton's ravine drop-off, and both having a bigger bites than barks.
- Anyone in the area, or driving down I-81 needs to play this at least once. This will give you plenty of practice on the mid-range game.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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