10 Helpful / 0 Not
One of Iowa's top courses
Pros: -2 sets of tee's
-Concrete Boxes, Excellent signs w/maps. *fyi Whether it's from this site, or the course website, get a map. This will help with navigation issues.
-The course navigates nicely around the park, with the exception of a couple of holes. (Map recommended. See Links/Files tab)
-Great use of the terrain and the Dam:
-Steep hills, up and down, that play in and around the woods. As well as having a spectacular drive off the side of the Dam. (#5 see picture)
-Bathrooms located throughout the course, as well as trash cans
-Shelters, which will offer a nice place to take a break. Don't underestimate the fact that you will probably need one.
-Designed for regular players to professionals. West Lake could be very rough on the beginning player, it's not beginner friendly. ...or even beginner accommodating! Since there are a number of beginner friendly courses in the Quad City area, I am fine with this being a tougher course. Bring on the challenge!
-Plenty of hazards that will require a lengthy carry over water. (Bring discs that you are willing to part with. Note the plural)
-Three of the advance tee's have a distance of 800+ feet and one that is 780ft.
-The rec tee's should not to be confused for amateur tee's. They require hefty distance drives, and strategic approaches. They also carry a risk on the water shots.
-West Lake is an endurance course that will have you traversing up and down some big hills. You will want to bring plenty of liquid, and possibly an energy snack of some kind.
-West Lake is a destination course and will take 3-4 hours to complete. If you plan on playing other courses, consider the time and energy it will take to play here. You will be tired after playing here.
-The scenery here is spectacular. You will be playing around the lake, and along hillsides. You may want to bring a camera.
Cons: I know I'm repeating what has already been said, but one downside is that the course is not segregated from the other park goers. It plays near shelters, a ball field and common areas where gatherings are being held. You could find yourself playing a mando around a family reunion. The flip side to this, is that West Lake is in an area where Disc Golf is well recognized. So the people here know what's going on. ...for the most part.
This downside may not seem like much, and it's really circumstantial. The Tee Markers are only located near the long tee's. I played here during the winter and the short tee's were hidden under the snow and nearly impossible to locate. That meant we had to play from the long tee's in winter apparel. Needless to say, it was a rough game.
Other Thoughts: UPDATE REGARDING RATING BUMP: After playing Idlewild, I realized that there are similarities in the cons. Albeit West Lake has more interactions with Park Goers, Idlewild is not exempt from this interaction either. This course is a top notch course. The layout here is immense, and the challenge is extreme. This course is worthy of a 5 disc rating.
What a phenomenal course! You will want to be adequately prepared for this course. You may want to break out some hiking shoes, because you will be trekking up and down steep hills. ...quite frequently! You will also want to bring some food and plenty of liquids. It took me and a friend just over 4 hours to play here. So you may want to plan accordingly, if you are planning on hitting multiple courses in the QC area. West Lake is out of town aways, and I didn't pass many places to "grab a bite" on the way in.
At West Lake you will be required to throw a variety of shots, with various approaches. Water is also a factor on many a hole, so approach with care. West Lake has a wide variety of shots, from narrow timber shots to wide open hillside. The last 6 holes will absolutely push your stamina, as you will walk up a steep hill, and right back down, then back up again, and so on. I was physically exhausted when I finished West Lake.
Do not discount the recreational tee. It's doesn't mean beginner, it still carries a hefty challenge. Both tee's, advanced and recreational, have lengthy drives and require a strategic approach. In some cases validating the old saying "It's all about the second shot". West Lake will not disappoint, but it will challenge you physically and mentally. There are a few hillside drives, that will give you the opportunity to "Air it out, and let it fly".
FWIW to those that will play from the rec tee's: Take a disc you don't care about, and drive from the #5 Pro tee, which throws off the top of the dam. (again, see the pics) There is a chance you will lose the disc, but it is worth risking a disc to watch it fly like that!
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Sick, sick course
Pros: What a ridiculous course - literally the hardest course I have ever played (which includes Idlewild, Highbridge Gold, etc). The course has so much variety, and extreme water and elevation. There's no question about it - this course is only for excellent players. If you are an amateur then this course will spit you out. Holes 5 and 13 go across the damn and offer some of the most challenging and daunting disc golf shots imaginable. The second shots to both 5 and 13 (from the pro tees, which I would advise only playing if you can afford to lose plastic - but if you can afford it, then do it) are so awesome. 350 to 400 foot shots to a small sliver land guarded by water. Hole 18 is just sick - 800 feet dogleg left through a tight tunnel. If it was a hundred feet farther I would rate it a par 6. Hole 19 is one of the signature holes, as you have to throw over a lake to a 15 foot wide island. Holes 20 and 21 are two of the hardest back to back holes I have ever played - hole 20 is an uphill 550 feet dagger through the woods, and hole 21 is a 650 foot downhill dogleg right, with a scary second shot. The green is 90 degrees to the right at the bottom of the hill, bordered by the lake. I have only discussed a few of the holes at this course - if not for a few cons which I will address, this course would be a top five course.
Cons: It wasn't a con for me, but this course isn't even hard - it's impossible. You will lose discs. I played with a friend of mine and we lost five discs in the water and 2 more were thrown into the water and retrieved (beautiful Hydra). The only con I have is that two of the holes were completely unplayable when we were there. The fairways on two of the holes went right through picnic areas with grills, tables, etc, and made the holes basically unplayable. Also, holes 9-11 seemed to be just tossed into the design. They seeme to be easy filler holes - however, that wasn't such a bad thing because the rest of the course was so epically awesome.
Other Thoughts: Having 24 holes is a definite plus, but there were a few holes that seemed to be out of place with the rest of the course. The only thing keeping this course from a 5 rating are the two holes that were unplayable because the fairways went straight through picnic areas. Besides that issue, this course is simply epic.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
probably will end up top 10
Pros: This course has everything except a bunch of technical wooded holes.
Extreme elevation everywhere. (But, not used like many ski hill courses where this is the only consideration; and becomes boring after a while).
Extreme water everywhere. (On some holes; this comes into play on the first shot; on some holes, the second shot; and some holes; three or more shots.)
Great signage; good tees; scorecards almost always present.
This is the highest review I have given to a course; and it deserves it.
In conjunction with Camden 2 (the other side), Devil's Glen (pins in long position), Middle Park, and Butterworth (a good nine); this makes for one of the best disc golfing meccas I have ever had the pleasure of playing. (And Eastern Park is probably the most played course in the area!)
Cons: The only downside to this course is it's multiuseness. Quite a few holes play near picnic tables or a pavilion. (A couple of holes involve going over large picnic table areas; which adds an obstacle feel to these holes). Fisherman have actually been the folks you need to play around during my trips here. Though the design plays near the picnic areas and pavilion or two; these areas seem to me to have been designed in such a way that the two coexist well.
You will lose plastic on this course....bring discs you don't mind losing; or, be prepared to part with a favorite or two.
Other Thoughts: So, I have waited until my third trip here to review. The last one; we used this course as a site for a 35 person/four team tourney (representing three states). There was not a bad word said about this course from 35 players of all ability levels. Pros enjoyed it; ams enjoyed it; older age players enjoyed it; our women even enjoyed it. We allowed lesser seeded players to play some or all short tees. The difference of tees allows good opportunity for skill level differences. Water still comes into play on many holes from short tees.
This area is known/unknown. The ladies recently played their U.S. championships here. But, only 51 showed up. This seems to be the case here. The area is highly respected in some circles and yet not played heavily. This is a bonus!!!! You can come to these absolutely wonderful courses and not be overwelmed by numbers of players.
You will have never played a course with so much water in play!! This course will drag you around for a minimum of four hours; you will lose one to five discs and you WILL WANT TO COME BACK TO PLAY IT AGAIN.
The camp ground here is excellent. Plan a four day weekend to play here as well as the others mentioned and you will not be disappointed. Also, add Eagle River course in Clinton, IA, and you will be playing 6 championship level courses in one area!
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
A beautiful, tough, frustrating course that deserves top status
The setting for this course is a beautiful, expansive county park with multiple lakes, hiking trails, picnicing facilities, swim beach and many other amenities.
The dg course has many pros including:
-Good facilities (bathrooms (except in winter), water, shelters, ample parking, practice basket, and scorecards at kiosk by hole 16 (you drive past it on the way to the parking lot), at campsite, and online at http://www.qcdiscgolfclub.com.../westlake.php
-2 teeboxes per hole with good signage
-Course utilizes landscape really well: many uphill holes, downhill holes, flat holes, tunnel, wide open, and sculpted, tree lined fairways.
-LOTS of OB: 9 water holes, and a few road OB holes.
-Many multishot, true par 4 and par 5 holes. Especially 5, 13 (dam holes), 15, and 18, 21, 22. These are all holes where at least 2 big drives are needed. Many other holes are tough 3s from the longs especially.
-Hard to figure out which hole is the signature hole.
-Not crowded at all (averages like 2 groups a day probably)
-Easy to navigate except in noted spots (see cons)
-Fairways are well maintained
Cons: -Park is definitely multiuse and some holes will be unplayable in the afternoon. Especially 6, 10 and 11, also watch for fishermen on all water holes
-A lot of thick rough that eats discs, stay out of the rough if at all possible.
-A round from the longs here is extremely grueling as you will be throwing anywhere from 70-120 shots depending on your skill level.
-Navigation from 19-20 sucks, after you play 19 you have to walk back down 19's fairway, to the red tees and hang a sharp right and head up the hill.
Other Thoughts: This course is great, if it were played by more reviewers, I have no doubt that it would be in the top 20 in the nation. It is extremely brutal though and if you don't like taking 6s, 7s , 8s without OB on holes, you will hate this course. Be prepared to shoot in the 90's or over here, unless you're really good. I also would not play this course by yourself, it helps to have a spotter. Play in the morning before the picnicers come if you want to play all 24 holes.
The back 12 is absolutely brutal from the blues
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Really, really hard...maybe too hard.
Pros: 24 brutally challenging holes. All the length you'll ever want and then some. A ton of water coming in to play. This course will work every facet of your game. From super tight fairway shots and brutal rough to more open 'let-it-rip' par 4's where OB comes into play.
Cons: This thing is just too much to bite off in 1 round of golf. The water shots are so perilous that its tough to get in a round without losing a disc. Not to mention the brutal rough on some blind shots where you can lose one. Then you've got the incredible distance of the holes combined with the fact that there are 24 of them. Its a tiring day throwing your disc 80+ times in 1 round here. And the shots demand your absolute focus or you may be looking.
Other Thoughts: Some of the shots on this course are really alot of fun, I just wish it was an 18 holer. This course will really work every part of your game. Its a fantastic championship 24 hole layout, just probably not something you'll play casually on a daily basis. Expect to spend a few hours out here and a few discs if you want to take on the beast!
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 7 Not
one of the best
Pros: very hard with multiple tees. this course will test every aspect of your game. two large lakes come into play on most holes. two shots play over a water dam. lots of elevation change. some wooded.
Cons: not for beginners
Other Thoughts: this is one of the best courses I've played. play smart and don't let the water get to you and you'll have a great round. i didn't go into the water once or loose any discs.
2 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 10 Not
I'm not good enough to play this.
Pros: Very hard course. Lots and Lots of water. Very well laid out.
Cons: I'm not nearly good enough to play this course consistenty.
Other Thoughts: Make sure you bring extra discs to this course. This may be the toughest course in the Quad Cities.
1 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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