The Front 9 Rocks! Back 9 Not So Much!
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Robert Morris Park is a large lakeside park on the east side of Kalamazoo. As you drive in, you'll see baskets on both sides of the road. There is a $5 entrance fee that you place in the envelope and deposit in their little lockbox. This morning, I was the only person in the park. The park, besides the lake, has bathrooms, picnic area and a nice playground.
The disc golf course starts on the left side of the large parking lot. A sign points you toward the first hole. There is a practice basket here, a kiosk, garbage cans and a picnic table. The tee pads are rough, as in old and kinda worn or roughed, as in made with a roughed in, more textured surface for added traction. The tee signs are nice green/white ones showing the route.
The course starts out with a bang with hole 1 being a very cool, very rugged 370' drive up through this washed out, rugged valley. The basket is not visible from the tee pad but sits up just past the top of this hill.
# 2 is a 262' hole through a gauntlet of small trees. I call it my Batman hole as in Pow! Smack! Thump! and Bam! I hit every tree on my way to the basket.
# 3. After playing 1100 courses, I'm still seeing stuff I've never encountered anywhere else. The # 3 and # 6 holes share a bench here and this bench is 16' long! Nice idea.
# 4 is a 371' uphill so it plays more like 450'.
# 5 is just a nice normal, 189' Hyser Ace Run.
8 & 9 are both amazing short Ace Runs. 8 is just a short little (149') anhyser shot. # 9 is awesome. It's a short 170' downhill with a nasty little drop off behind. It's quite easy to fly past the basket and land up against the fence. That can turn a possible Ace into a 3 or 4 quickly. The epitome of risk/reward.
Now you're back at he parking lot.
# 10 is a long, difficult uphill hole that is listed at 486'. It has play more like a 600' hole when the uphill is factored in. Weiny arms like me are in trouble here. # 11 is 470' to a basket tucked over a small hill and sitting close to the park entrance road. Next # 12 plays along a steeply banked fairway to the visible basket 411' away.
# 14 requires a big arm to throw over the treetops to a basket 465' away but also goes up a small hill towards the end.
15 is just boring, straight and open 352' out.
# 17 is a difficult 560' slight uphill with a tight fairway.
But then # 18 is worth the price of a ticket by itself. It's kind of a cross between diabolical and wonderful. It's 327' downhill, very straight and very narrow and way down there at the bottom is the basket. And me, who can't keep a disc on a line for 50' fires away my disc flies perfectly straight, all the time just skimming the plants and bushes on the right side.........only to barely catch one of the last bushes. So much fun!
Robert Morris plays at an intermediate level but is a total blast for an aging, recreational player like myself. And yes, it's a nice workout, as well. Not one of those courses that is so long and grueling that you're totally done when you finish. This is more like, I finished 18, do I have enough in the tank for another round. I think if I were a local, I'd play a lot of 27 hole rounds thus getting to play the yummy front 9 two times.
Cons: The front 9 wowed me. The back 9 did not. I found it pretty average except for # 18.
A pet peeve of mine (and others as well) is the # 4 tee pad is slanted slightly uphill with the contour of the land. When you are already cursed with a weiny arm, throwing from a upwards leaning pad only magnifies the dire situation that you find yourself in.
I don't care for fairways carved out of tall grass. The tall grass isn't really a rough, it's more of a nuisance than anything that forces you to spend time hunting for your disc.
# 15 hole is boring and out of place on this course.
I have to agree with reviewer davetherocketguy regarding # 10. When I finally summited the hill after 3-4 throws, I looked around and around trying to locate the basket. The sign wasn't exactly accurate as to the location.
$5 park entry fee isn't that much but for some players it could add up if you played here often. There was nobody home so I couldn't inquire about a yearly pass. A previous reviewer said $30.
Other Thoughts: As I came up the hill on # 10' there were a flock of turkeys eyeballing me. I think they were sizing me up as their food source for the entire winter. I guess they decided I wasn't worthy the danger or perhaps they had watched me throwing with pin point accuracy and terrific velocity and realized, that I was not to be taken lightly.
I would rate the front 9 a strong 4.0. The back 9 including 18, I rate a 3.0. Don't count 18 and I give it an average 2.5. Together, I'll go with a 3.5. There are some terrific, really memorable holes here at Robert Morris.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Best Course in Kalamazoo County
Pros: - Truly an intermediate course. One of those courses that strikes the perfect balance of not too hard and too easy. The kind of course for those who love disc golf are going to love this course regardless of skill level.
- Elevation changes abound here making shot selection very interesting. The use of the hills and landscape are really what makes this course great.
- The wooded holes of 1 through 9 will challenge anyone with the super tight lines needed to make any semblance of progess down the fairway. Big arms will love ripping it on the back 9 where everything is more open
- The baskets are definitely aging well and for the most part have been kept up.
- Benches are all over this course which is really nice after wandering up and down the hills.
- Maybe I played at a good time but this course had little to no trash anywhere.
- Very nice multiuse park setting on a small lake with nice bathrooms on site.
- Tee signs are definitely informative and for the most part in good shape. All the distances seemed to be correct.
- There are white flags on most of the baskets...WOW! Those are so handy especially on hole 1.
- Great use of risk/reward in many areas especially with some super duper fast greens like #11. #9 was really fast too but that's borderline absurd.
- #18 is a hoot. You make the narrow alley downhill a bird for your average noodle-arm is a very real possibility.
Cons: - The biggest con for me is the lack of next tee signs in key areas. For example, 9 to 10, 5 to 6, 10 to 11 and 16 to 17. Most of the time just following the path seems to work okay but some next tee signs would be nice.
- I'm all for a fast green but #9 is almost over the top.
- Navigating #10 fairway was confusing. You throw up a gigantic hill and then walking up to the top...where's the basket? I think this is one of the few spots I've seen on a disc golf course where a sign pointing to the basket would do wonders.
- Speaking of #10 fairway...I think the one of two design flaws on the course is how close the #11 fairway comes to #10. It's a little too close. The second flaw IMHO is how close #13 comes to the fence adjacent to H Ave. Huckers beware...that is a busy county road and letting one fly onto that pavement means only bad things will happen.
- Some of the wooded holes are just a little too narrow. #2 is a great example. This hole requires a 200' laser beam straight shot down a 8' gap is kinda silly.
- Hate to admit this but there is a bit of a frustrating theme with some of these tees. Throwing your first shot up and over a hill is...aggravating.
- On the back nine there is a bit of proliferation of tall prairie grass which can make finding discs in the height of summer nightmarish at best.
Other Thoughts: While this is a pay to play course I was so happy with the disc golf experience I would happily pay the $5 without hesitation everytime I come here. Even though I picked on the navigation issues pretty hard after going through the course once the layout does make sense. This course is worth driving a ways to get here. I would argue that its the best course in the Kalamazoo County.
It's almost too bad that the water never comes into play on any of this course with such a nice lake nearby.
And a special message to those that have decided to add their bit of phalic artwork to many of the really nice tee signs: There is a special place in hell for the likes of you right between the child molesters and those that talk during movies.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Shot Variation. This place has pretty much all you can ask for besides the water being in play. Tight Wooded, Bombers, Up and Downhill.
- Place is pretty good of a work out with lots of elevation variation.
- Signs makes it pretty easy to find your way around and know where to go.
-Tee pads Pretty nice Tee Pads here, minus hole 10(it's all rough looking)
-Grass is managed pretty well (as it should be with pay to play)
Cons: - For a pay to play, there isn't nearly as many trash cans and benches as there should be.
-The staff seems to be pretty unfriendly
-On a Sunny or Windy day the Back 9 can be pretty rough as a lot of it's open without shade or trees.
-It used to have a water hole but they took this out(atleast I have been told this)
-They run out of Score Cards(for a pay to play it should have them)
Other Thoughts: First hole was kind of hard to find, it's starts in the woods right by the water, but the sign is hard to see from the parking lot.
This place is pretty good and has a lot of fun holes. I think for the pay to play factor makes this a place that I don't really want to come back to. Cold Brook is about the same in distance and more enjoyable. However if I lived in the Kzoo area and there was a small annual fee it may be worth it as there is swimming here too.
Also from what I saw if you walk in its free, but I didn't think there was parking anywhere by it and it's a walk to the first hole.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Nice cement tees, they've got a nice mix of everything out here, 18 is a nice downhill tunnel shot nice way to end the round, some open holes with nice distance and then some tight ones through the woods.
Cons: Signs, most are missing some spots got confusing to navigate, they could fix the signs if i pay to play.
Other Thoughts: I would recommend using spotters out here if you get off the fairway it can get a little thick and make finding discs hard. Fun course worth the trip I can't wait to come back out.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 5 Not
Do we really need to walk up that hill?
Pros: Fun and challanging course with some length, woods, and elevation changes.
Cons: Thick grass in summer, sometimes busy, pay to play in summer, some waiting on nice days
Other Thoughts: Fun course with all around apeal, bring bug spray
2 of 7 people found this review helpful.
16 Helpful / 0 Not
Good Ole Romo
-Awesome course with elevation, water, and wooded holes.
-Cement tee pads throughout.
-Scenic holes you won't soon forget.
-Not very busy.
-Excellent challenge that will test your distance and accuracy.
-Supberb layout of course. You won't be running into any other holes.
-Course is well marked.
-Course is well maintained.
-Not DOG friendly, the staff will give you grief if you come between Memorial day and Labor day. Don't bring your dog during this period you will be disappointed as you get turned away. (Goto Coldbrook not far away).
-Long prairie grass easy to lose your disk in the summer.
-Cost's money to play
-During the months after Labor day until Memorial day you have to park outside the park in a small little area that fills up rapidly.
Other Thoughts: -
My favorite course in the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek area. This course is a must play, it has all the ingredients of a top course. If you are playing between Sept-May start at hole #13 which is right next to the parking spaces (when the park is closed)---sometimes they do open in the off season but rarely. If you do this you will end up finishing on #12 right next to your car.
Hole #9 a monster drive is needed to clear the water on this hole!
--Warning for hole #9---
do not go into the water it looks shallow but it is not! It is full of goose and duck droppings and you will be up to your neck in it. Also don't be a jerk and throw picnic tables are other items to try to retrieve your disk, it won't work and the Township board that runs the course will or might end up closing it off or putting in more intrusive rules.
This course is truly a gem, play it if your looking for an excellent course to play in the area.
Update for March 2009.
Vandals and disc golfers have been treating the course poorly and as a result they removed some garbage bins and benches. Thanks guys!
***Update July 31st 2009***
Hole 9 has a new pin placement, just as challenging as before.
The Course itself has gone through some renovation, many trees have been cleared and it looks and plays even better!!!!
Update May 2010
They changed the course layout again. The magnificent hole number 9 got changed to what it was before and it is not as good as it could be.
UPDATE AUGUST 2010
--They still don't allow dogs in the course, although a few reviews claimed you could this is not the case. .
----New signs and more benches really improved this course.
16 of 16 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Great cement tee pads on all holes, with new signs. Better-than-average maintenance.
Holes 3 through 9 offer varied layouts with both crush opportunities and tech holes.
Back nine is fairly wide open for distance drives and has nicely detailed fairways.
Hole 18 has a long downhill drive with a narrow opening and fairway that demands skill.
Generally easy to navigate.
Cons: Accessability and parking in fall/winter.
Holes 1 and 2 are a little too tightly-wooded and seem like they belong at a different course.
Tall grass outside of fairways on the back nine eats discs, especially in mid-summer.
Other Thoughts: Where to go if you're sick of hitting trees at Oshtemo or Coldbrook, and typically less crowded than either.
One of southwest Michigan's most under-appreciated courses.
3/24/10 Update: Holes 7-9 have been changed back to the pre-2008 layout, with 9 being a short downhill hole instead of the former water hole.
5 of 9 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: really fun and easy to get to. has a wide variety of holes with elevation changes and long and short holes and left and right hooking holes. easy to navigate and wasn't too crowded. also one of the cleaner courses i've played.
Cons: a couple of the holes are kinda crazy but add to the overall experience. holes #2 and the new #9 come to mind. can be a pain in the butt to find your disc on some of the back 9 holes with the long prairie type grass. also you have to pay to play, but it's worth it.
Other Thoughts: fun and recommended
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Well designed course with plenty of variety. Some technical 'woods' holes, some wide open grasslands, elevation (up and down), trees, doglegs right and left, wind, some blind holes. A good place to use every shot in your repetoire. Well marked for the most part, and each nine returns you back to the parking lot allowing you to play either nine or eighteen. The park entrance fee keeps traffic and trash to a minimum.
Cons: While this is a 'pay to play' course, the five dollar park entrance fee could be split by four players squeezed into the same car, which makes it pretty affordable for a day's outing. Play it twice to stretch your five dollars even further (yearly pass also available). A couple of the holes were a bit 'tree heavy' and could use a chainsaw to open things up a little bit more (hole 8 was just plain ridiculous).
Other Thoughts: Bring plenty of water, the elevation changes can be quite strenuous in the heat of the day. Bring your swimsuit and take a dip in the lake when you are finished (wish we had).
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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