5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Located in a very large, seemingly nice park with many other activities.
-There are two 18 hole courses on site. I only had enough daylight for one, as there is no indication of two courses online, and tried the newer course, which seems to be quite new based on the other reviews so far. My review is based solely on this new course.
-There is a kiosk with course maps. While not very high quality, this is still more than many courses offer, and is absolutely necessary to have any chance of navigating this course.
-There is significant elevation as far as Florida goes.
-Lots of potential. Unfortunately that's about it for pros here, as there is a lot of unmet potential. While I appreciate any disc golf course, this was disappointing to the point of inspiring my first ever review, despite being my 100th course played. Thus the focus on the cons, which if seriously addressed could help turn this into a great course.
Cons: -Tee pads. They are just rubber mats which become very slick with any amount water, which happens to pool in the bumpy low spots of several tees. Honestly it is better to just throw from the dirt next to the pads to avoid any serious mishaps.
-Signage. Or lack there of. Other than next tee directors hanging from most baskets, which is definitely necessary for navigation here although far from sufficient, there is none.
-The map. While better than nothing, this thing is barebones, and not entirely accurate. It is a grainy satellite image of basically just a forest with very few distinguishable landmarks. On top of that are rough tee and basket locations connected by straight lines and labeled with the straight line distance from tee to basket. No indication of fairway shape or golf distance, both of which vary immensely from the map. For the most part next tees are fairly close to previous basket, but there are some points where the map indicates this but the next tee is actually 100+ feet away and not visible due to their flat mat status.
-Fairways. It's almost a joke to call them that. Holes 1-5 were short and manageable, and you could actually see the basket from the tee despite zero effort to help them stand out from their surroundings. Pretty much what you would expect for technical woods holes. Hole 6 is where it goes south. A 622' straight line through the forest is what the map indicates. Reality: a winding hiking trail with no more than 100' before the next sharp bend. I think I got there in 7. Hole 7: the map says 334' straight line. After walking at least 400' down the double dogleg fairway and not finding the hole, I went back to the tee to see if the intersecting walking trail was actually the fairway before double checking the map and pulling up google satellite to check my orientation, then deciding to skip it and head back down the fairway to eventually find the basket 100' past where I first stopped. I think I ended up skipping 7-9 because I don't like teeing off if I don't know which way the basket is, and if I have to walk 400' around a bend to even see the "300" ft basket, I'm not inclined to walk back and play it. Moral of the story: hiking trails are not fairways, and gps distance is not golf distance. I have to agree with another reviewer in that it seems like this course was not designed by someone with much understanding of disc golf or the flight mechanics of discs. The only way to play these narrow twists and turns is to either spray and pray but 100% hit trees, or throw mids down the fairway 100' at a time and still probably hit trees. Neither of these options are enjoyable or good disc golf.
-All of these cons culminate in what is arguably the worst problem: navigation. It's hard to find the courses in the park. It's hard to find the baskets from the tees due to lack of signage, numerous blind corners, inaccurate distances and paths, and multiple crisscrossing walking trails sprinkled on top. It's sometimes hard to find the next tee due to their low profile. It's something that can put a stain on an otherwise good course, but here it's piled on top of an overall frustrating and disappointing experience. And all it takes is a little bit of effort to make it a lot better.
Other Thoughts: A park with this amount of resources and the rare blessing of elevation in Florida could really be spectacular. Unfortunately, it is more than disappointing. I'm sure it was conceived when someone hiking along the trails thought "Hey! What if we put some of those frolf doohickeys in here??" I have to agree that the second course should not have been considered until the first one got maintenance, tee signs and real tee pads, along with possibly some redesign help. The only reason I might return would be to play the original course which I didn't have time for, because it seems like it might be not as bad as the new one, but it still doesn't sound like too much fun. Or to help redesign if requested. Here's to hoping!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Lots Of Woods ,,, And More Woods
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Once Inside Whispering Pines , I had trouble finding this course . I had to ask the lifeguard at the pool where it started . She pointed me to the far end right side of the pool area opposite where you parked . There is an old kiosk there with a map and some course results flyers . The course itself has your basic Chainstar baskets with basket numbers ion the middle pole , + some next tee signs on the bottoms of some of the baskets . , no signage , but the hold number and the distance is marked on large rubber black pads that are used for the tees . Print The Map ! These pads are hard to see on the ground and will cost you time looking for them . The front 9 is behind the pool and the back 9 is kind of on the left side of the parking lot and back away from the pool .Don't let the 4500' total of this course fool you . This course packs a bite . The whole course sits in the woods and many of the fairways are on existing or old walking/hiking/biking trails .Whispering Pines is one of the few courses in Florida with real elevation . The whole of the course is very technical and narrow fairways .The front and back 9 start and finish near the parking lot , which is nice if you just have enough time to get in a quick 9 . There is a good range in distance , with hole 12 being 166 , an uphill shot on top of a ridge , to #11 , a 408' drive down 2 paths with the basket protected on the right by a number of trees . I swear that when I looked up to throw , 2 more trees jumped out from the previous fairway into my present one . The holes here aren't unforgettable , but some ARE good . #1 starts you off with an uphill 280' drive that will feel more like 315 . #9 is a tight little downhill shot with a shrinking fairway . #13 is a window shot from an elevated tee over a ravine to the basket on the next hill . 15 is a fading 253' midrange shot that ends on a low plateau . 16 is another downhill window shot 191' . #18 is a good finishing hole , 313' , fairly level drive that will eventually break left to right . This course is not a fast one . It took me 65 minutes to complete my 18 . Figure that 4 will take around twice that long or more . The course might not get a lot of play , so you might have it to yourself . The only noises outside of the woods that you might hear you hear are the swim club . Signature Hole : Also the toughest . #10 . A 383' hole , with a path that is 10-12' in width , with trees on either side and also a steep dropoff on both sides . I forgot to mention that about 225' down the middle of the fairway that there are a row of a couple of small trees . If you go down the sides of these hills , it will be hard to ascend and hold the fairway . Still ,there is some fun factor with some challenge here . Since some of the fairways of this course are loaded with pine needles , you can actually skip your discs off of them for an extra 20-30' sometimes . You will also be in the shade the whole time
Cons: #1 Danger . Not necessarily from path walkers , but to you . This is NOT a course for basic gym shoes or sandals . Hiking boots would be smart here . Since the course is woods and some of these grades are steep and the tee pads are rubber , a good rain might make for a good fall . #2 Navigation . Print the Map . Since the tee is black and barely over the ground , you can be confused on several spots , notably 9-10 , where you have to look for a spot near the parking lot , and 10-11 where you have to slowly decend the steep embankment , walk across the path to a little higher ground where the #11 tee pad is . You also have to backtrack from 15 basket to 16 tee on your right and up the hill . Bring bug spray , as the bugs can eat you alive here . #3 The Rough . Disc Risk : at least medium if not higher . There are some overgrowth here , and a good ricochet off a tree , and it will happen , can cause your prized disc to get caught in it . #4 . Unforgiving fairways . Some of these fairways are damn near impossible to negotiate . If your drive isn't perfect , you are going to have a terrible shot coming back . I would say that the variety that this course offers , is what type of tree you will bounce off of after you tee off .
Other Thoughts: The course is a tough technical . I would personally like to see a few of these trees exit the existing fairways and have some of the rough cleaned up . The park itself is nice and well taken care of A pool with a reasonable cost to swim , . tennis and basketball courts .. Lots of extra land already gives me ideas on spreading this course out a little .Plenty of woods here . Thank You Whispering Pines for letting me try your course out . My Recommendation : Newbies , 2 disc locals , and families should avoid this course . The avid local , intermediate , and even pros might enjoy the challenge here . As for travelers , coupling this with nearby Floral or Okahumpka would give you several courses to try nearby from I-75 . I might say to give this course a try , if not just for the sake of some hills .
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Fun with some challenge
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Fun course. Isn't a quick course, so good for a morning of fun.
It's typical Florida woods, so lots of pine trees and brush.
Next basket direction is marked well enough. Tees are rubber pads with hole number and distance marked on most.
Some challenging holes which will test your ability, and definitely some holes where a bad throw will lead to a search through the woods.
I had a good time, and will play there again.
Cons: As mentioned, it is pretty thick. So not many opportunities for big throws to air it out.
Kind of hard to tell where the basket is on a few holes unless you get a map.
Other Thoughts: There are two 18 hole courses here. The main one starts just behind the pool, and is likely the one everyone has reviewed. It is a decent course, and worth checking out.
The second 18-hole course starts to the left of the basket ball courts in the woods. That course (or at least the front 6-8 holes) is bad. It seems like a 2 foot wide running trail in the middle of over growth, with trees blocking the way. The margin of error is zero. Your disc will end up in the thick woods on more than one occasion. Whether it's because you didn't throw it perfect or because you hit one of the many trees blocking the path. The location of the basket is a guess on more than one occasion.
We played 5-6 holes, then just walked out. Feels like either someone who doesn't play DG built the course, or someone who throws a certain way built the course around their self.
Instead of building another 18 holes, they should of invested the time/money into the first 18 hole course and made it even better.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 18 holes, secluded, heavily wooded and technical compared to other Florida courses, elevation changes.
Cons: Rubber tee pads are not in the greatest shape but since most holes are short, its not that big of a deal.
Signage is non existent. There's arrows on the baskets and hole numbers and distances on the pads. Course is not terrible to navigate but not the easiest. Baskets blend in very well.
Fairways, Ughhh yeah more like unfairways for at least half of the holes.
Other Thoughts: This could be a real nice tight wooded technical and clean course but for no reason it seems like it is unfinished or abandoned.
Even being short holes, the fairways themselves are still not fairways yet walk paths with trees in between. Holes 1, 10, 11 are fine examples of what's wrong with this course as well as a handful of other holes that have an unnecessary tree or three down the "paths".
Out of 100 or so courses I have played, this is one of the most disappointing for being such a great and unique piece of land especially in Florida. I feel like a weekends worth of work making true fairways would benefit this course greatly. Adding tee signs and concrete pads would make this course close to 4 stars YET another course was recently installed and I think they will both suffer due to not focusing on perfecting each.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Calling Daniel Boone!
Pros: Whispering Pines is one difficult course to locate. We drove from one end of this large park to the other end trying to find the course. It's amazing that you never see any trace of this course from the park's road. We finally located a kiosk that had something about disc golf on it and a poor excuse for a map. Finally, a maintenance man drove by and we asked him where the course was. He was hesitant but finally told us it started out behind the pool. And thus I started my adventure.
The brush in this park is very thick but the course did have some legitimate fairways although they were often very tight and technical. Throwing straight for about 200' is a prerequisite on this course.
The DGA baskets have an orange # on the inner pole. It makes them easier to spot in the thick forest here. Most have the next arrow signs hanging below the baskets. The pads are rubber mats. Most of them have the hole # and distance stenciled on them. That serves as the tee signs and makes them difficult to locate because there is nothing sticking up to see. The front nine is better signed and easier to navigate than the back nine.
# 10 gets my vote as the most difficult hole here. It's 358' down a raised road bed about 15-20' wide. This raised road is anywhere from 6' to 15' above the surrounding land. Without resorting to just throwing my putter about 50' at a time, I would never, ever get to the basket without tailing off into the rough below. Definitely not my personal favorite type of hole.
Actually, my round went into a deep funk here. The next arrow sign pointed the way to # 11. I never located it. I found 17 and 18 right below #10. I stumbled around and located a few other unmarked tee pads and baskets but was never able to get on track. Finally, lost hungry, thirsty and scared, a jogger passing by pointed escorted me back to the parking lot and my patient, waiting wife.
Cons: Poorly signed. # 1 says nothing so you have to walk up and read the # on the basket.
I hated # 10. IMO, that's a horrible, unrealistic hole.
The back nine is poorly signed.
I hate courses that play over walking/jogging trails, BMX trails, cross country ski trails, horse trails, snowmobile trails, nature trails or any other kind of marked trails. The back nine here played around three separate walking trails that were all signed (confusingly signed I'd say) making navigation a nightmare to me. After playing almost 1200 course, I like to think I can find my way around a course.
Good luck locating the course. Hint, hint! It starts behind the swimming pool.
Other Thoughts: The front nine was a decent, technical course with challenge. The back nine was a total waste of my time. # 10 was an ugly hole. Climbing down from the # 10 basket was a slippery slope with leaf covered hills.
Thus is one course that I wouldn't care to call my home course. I prefer to call it the 1191st course I've played and leave with almost 100% certainty that I shall not ever be returning and won't be left huddling in the woods trying to rub two sticks together to start a fire, Tim Hanks style.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: (2.712 Rating) The most heavily wooded course I've ever played as of this review (108 courses)
- RAW BEAUTY - Bay far the most redeeming quality of Whispering Pines is its natural beauty. Wonderful terrain changes for a Florida course this far south. Fully wooded with vibrant vegetation and superb natural fauna. I spotted a Pileated Woodpecker on the back 9. (Woody the Woodpecker for those that know the old cartoon)
- CHALLENGING - Despite the short length, this course is tough. League postings at the community board showed not one of the 25 course regulars with a sub-par handicap. Advanced players will probably struggle to crack par. Having a good mid range recovery game will be key to shoot low.
- SHOT SHAPING - Your discs will need to work some magic. There is typically only one angle of attack on every hole. You will have to release at the right speed and angle, and make sure the ending curves correctly to avoid the thousands of trees in play. Good luck.
- ELEVATION FOR FLORIDA - Great elevation changes for a south Florida course. There's probably more elevation here than at the nearby Floral and Quarry courses combined. A nice 25 foot up shot on (12) followed by a nice down shot. However, several regions of the country would consider this course flat. No more than 30 foot of change on any one hole.
- CHILL AREAS - The entire course is entirely secluded and has an overall Zen feel. There are a few tee areas with seating and there's shade at all of the tees as well.
- SPACING - Well spaced out holes with no chance of running one into another fairway. The drawback however is that a few of the holes have longer walks between basket and next tee.
Cons: This course is beyond heavily wooded. Note, the DGCR photos only represent about half of the current course layout. It's been partially redesigned and is even more constricting than the photos represent.
- DESIGN - I'm not sure of the design constraints, (For example, not being allowed to cut trees down) but as it sits, I would say several holes are poorly executed and are flawed holes. It's almost as if the baskets and tees randomly fell from the sky and you have to figure out how to get from point A to point B. Several holes have their widest lane at around 4 feet. A few holes don't have a discernible angle to the basket. A couple wider holes, with 6 and 8 foot lanes, have a tree left in the middle of the lane, way down fairway. I like to refer to this type of hole as the "Middle Finger." Hole (10) "Three Middle Fingers" looks seemingly awesome from tee. It's a straight 350 foot hole along a 15 foot high ridge with a 12 foot wide lane. Scores of trees, left, right and top form a tunnel. In addition, there are three 4 inch diameter trees mid fairway, making four 3 foot gaps in the 12 foot lane. The random statistics to make this gap, and that's if you keep it low while staying in the 12 foot wide lane, is 44%. If you fail to hit the lottery on your shot, you will be greatly punished. Your upshot will have to get back on top of the ridge but it's almost entirely blocked off from the fairway lining trees. Hole (11) is another poorly designed hole called "The Beast." From tee it looks like a 400 foot poke and hope shot. But there is a lane there. It just makes 4 solid turns and is 6 to 8 feet wide. After (11), I actually began to like a bunch of holes.
- FORGIVENESS - One of least forgiving layouts I've ever played. I may have scored a few birdies here, but I still hit a tree on every freaking hole.
- OVERGROWTH - I played in early March and the overgrowth was already coming back with a vengeance. If you play here during the summer peak overgrowth, it's probably because you hate fun.
- NAVIGATION - Passable, but I've experienced much better on other similar type courses. To start. printing or downloading the map to your phone is a must, and I repeatedly checked mine. There are a bunch of directional ques along the layout, but it's not enough for this wooded course. I got lost for a few minutes between (10) and (11) as the map is a little bit off. The tee is farther south, or that is if down on the map is south. There's no north arrow on the map.
- SKILL LEVEL FRIENDLY - Way too difficult for beginners and many recreational players. I could also see higher skill lever players also not liking this course if they don't like heavily wooded technical courses. Floral Park, farther south, will draw a much wider swath of skill levels.
- CHARACTER - Probably about average as a whole but lacking in some aspects. The teeing experience was not the greatest. Although shaded, the tees themselves are rubber mats. Several were lumpy and uneven. Hole number and distance were on the mats and it appears some were beginning to fade. In addition, there are other things lacking, like no extra tees or extra basket placements and no practice basket. There was a little bit of seating, but there could have been a few more benches.
- UNIQUENESS - 18 very technical wooded shots. Just about every shot has to be played from just one angle. There is no water along the course to force a line. Not that there's a need for another hazard. No par 5 or dogleg holes either. There is however a bit of elevation, as mentioned above in the PRO comments.
Other Thoughts: Whispering Pines needs a serious redesign, as the land it graces is stunning. The course feels like a polar opposite to nearby Floral Park. I applaud the locals who brave to play this course day in and day out. I'm sure by now all these players are precision masters.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Not For The Faint Of Heart
Pros: Tight and heavily wooded and featuring hills, ridges, cliffs, bumps and a hole in a hole (15)! Challenging. Some of the narrowest fairways that I have ever seen (And my home course is the technical Preserve course at NPC). Fun. If you don't let it wear you down or get in your head. Scenic. Very pretty course with a good variety of tree and plant types.
Cons: Unfortunately, there are some cons.
No tee signs at all. There are hole #'s and distances on the passable mat tees, although some of the distances seem off.
There are some hikes between holes, and blind/hard to see pins that require first timers to walk down some fairways. Navigation can be tricky. Use the map!
There are apparently baskets and tees still in the ground from extinct courses or future ones perhaps that make navigation even tougher if you stray from the main course.
The course can have some harsh roll-aways if you don't land flat. Not really a con as that is the price to pay for playing a hilly bumpy course, but it can become frustrating.
The terrain can be harsh with steep difficult climbs in places. I would wear sturdy hiking type shoes and recommend that weak constitution types avoid this course. Also, I would recommend that beginners stay far away as this course would discourage most new players.
The course intersects with several popular hiking trails. There were way more hikers than disc golfers on a nice Saturday morning.
Other Thoughts: I like rustic disc golfing, and this course has that in spades. It is not for everyone (DGCR user R2sandman described this course as "whack" after playing it). All of the local dgers that we ran into on the other nearby course said that they played this course once and were done with it. So I guess it never gets too busy either. If you go bring your big-boy game and bring durable discs as tree hits are inevitable.
I believe that this course needs to be modernized. Put in some concrete tees, tee signs, better navigation aids and tweak it a little bit and this course will rival the best in the state.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Great park with great potential for improvement
Pros: The land is beautiful and heavily treed. Nice changes in elevation. 27 holes available to play. First 9 are supposed to be the easiest and the new last 9 are supposed to be the hardest.
Cons: Course lacks proper signage. It's not obvious where the first T is located. Pads are in need of leveling. Steep paths on some holes are dangerous and not cart friendly. My biggest issue is with the lack of proper lanes. Too many scrub trees in the flight path. Unless you are a pro or extremely lucky you are going to hit trees on most holes. A couple weekends with a crew and chainsaws and this place could be really be cool to play.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Midranges and Putters
Pros: This is a tight wooded course that really gives you a chance to work on your tunnel shots with midranges and putters.
Start at the large parking area for the swimming pool at the north end of the park, and walk around the pool fence until you find the first tee. Tee pads are rubber mats that are decent, though there are some lumps and bumps in them. Hole number and distance are stenciled on the pads, and there are no other signs. All baskets did have useful "next tee" arrows.
This course is mostly short, tight holes in the 190 - 250' range. In addition to the tree-lined fairways many have one or more tree in the middle that introduces an element of luck into the holes.
The front nine is made up of very similar holes, with the only variety being the basket placement a bit right, a bit left, or straight ahead.
Hole 10 is quite different with both the tee pad and the basket up on top of a levee type ridge, with big drop-offs on either side. The top is quite narrow and it is a real trick to keep your drive on top.
Hole 11 is labelled as "The Beast" and that is a good name for it. It is the only par 4 hole and the only hole over 400'. The drive is blind and requires a right turn then a left fade to position yourself for the second shot. Miss it by even a little and you're in the thick stuff and probably working on a bogie or worse.
While the front nine is pretty flat the back nine offers some good elevation changes, which add another challenging element.
Hole 18 seems like a gift as you drive down a dirt road that seem positively wide open compared to the other 17 holes.
Cons: There is a good bit of similarity to the holes on this course. Holes 10, 11, and 18 introduce some variety, but for the most part this is a short, tight, woods course.
If you like to air out your drives, this is not the course for you.
There are no tee signs and you will find yourself walking forward on a number of holes to spot the basket.
The rubber teepads are pretty good, but on one hole I did catch on a bad spot and stumbled off of the front.
Other Thoughts: This is a great course for working on precise drives down narrow fairways. I enjoyed the course as I don't often get a chance to play one this tight.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Skip front 9 and play back 9
Pros: Back 9 is interesting golf. Holes 10-13 are really fun and different than most courses in Florida. Shade for the whole course is nice. Gorgeous walk in the woods. Nice elevation changes (for Florida).
Cons: Front 9 is a series of tunnel shots through ridiculously tight fairways with thick underbrush and trees on the side. It is frustrating golf. Imagine Charlotte Disc Golf with "fairways" that are as narrow as 5 feet. Many reviewers describe this as challenging, technical, etc. I don't mean to offend, but I think these holes are poorly designed. It is poke and pray golf at it's worst. This is old school disc golf course design that should be fixed with wider, "fair" fairways.
Other Thoughts: With the quality and amount of land available, this could be one of the best courses in Florida. Perhaps the designer was told he couldn't cut down a single tree. If this is the case, it explains a lot about the design and would make the situation more understandable.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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