Disc-Over New Hanover
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: + The course plays primarily in a quiet wooded section off from a sleepy neighborhood park. The player won't be bothered here.
+ The fairways, short as they are, contain a different kind of challenge for each hole.
+ This course will force you to learn/relearn power control and angle control.
+ There are two tee pads per hole for the beginner and advanced beginner, but...
Cons: - ...Those tee pads are nothing more than tiny squares of concrete in the ground. Some are slanted, damaged or both.
- Some baskets are slanted, old or both.
- Tee signs, while at all tee pads (+), are bare-bones basic. Some don't even have the par and distance- just the shape of the optimal throw and nothing else.
- Why is the practice basket in the middle of hole 1's fairway?
- No 'next hole' indicators anywhere.
- Some of the most unforgiving rough and undergrowth I've ever encountered at a disc golf course exists here.
Other Thoughts: My favorite hole here to look at was hole4 because 4 clearly resembles the end of the more open holes and the beginning of the forested ones. My favorite hole here to play was hole6 because 6 caught me off guard with its challenging fairway. My least favorite was hole1 because it gave me the wrong idea about this course.
I'll be honest here, folks. When I first set eyes on New Hanover DGC-9, with its miniature tee pads, slanted signs and strangely-placed practice basket, my first thoughts were what you might expect, "Oh, great. This already looks like a slap dash and slipshod kind of a course. Good thing I'm using my beta bag of discs!" The tee signs are woefully inadequate. The baskets are a disjointed mix of old and new. And first-time navigation requires some guess work.
But a strange thing happened by the time I finished hole2. I started having fun. Yes, this course has much to be desired in terms of infrastructure. I've played at many 9-hole courses that have perfect tee signs, long and wide tee pads, pristine baskets and highly visible 'next tee' signs. However, stuff like that, important as it is, is not the main focus of a disc golf course. How does it play? How accommodating are the fairways and their challenges? Despite the many shortcomings of New Hanover, the throw by throw moments kept me engaged.
I always forget that wooded 9-hole disc golf courses tend to focus more on short tactics and piecemeal approaches to their fairways. During my first round, I threw with the intent to cover as much distance as possible and ended up in the thorny, twiggy, branchy and nasty woods for most of my tee-offs because I always ricocheted off of trees. Once I realized that the proper thing to do was to craft my throws around the narrow corners and somewhat constricted tunnels instead of powering past it all, I had a better time and landed closer to the basket without trying hard. New Hanover is here to remind new and old players alike that there is more to disc golf than crushing every drive.
It might be a suitable training ground because few other courses have undergrowth this clingy and fairways this narrow. And I do think that it's worth at least one visit if you are interested in reacquainting yourself with what it feels like to focus more on finesse over ferocity.
But the bottom line is that New Hanover is still just a brief disc golf diversion. It could very well surprise you with its layout, and its short distances might tempt you to play multiple times to go for as many birdies as you can. However, I don't imagine that it will have much impact on too many people.
Give it a try if you live nearby or if you really gotta have a short and tactic-heavy round in a secluded setting.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Short, Tight and Overgrown
A short, narrow 9 holer through dense woods; almost all holes incorporate the hillside
+ Plenty of parking, in a pleasant neighborhood park with other activities. It's doubtful you'll have to contend with other golfers on the course at the same time as you
+ It's wooded and narrow - even more so because its overgrown. The fairways were probably never much wider than 15'-20', but the woods have encroached so much that some of them are half that wide now
+ Hole #1 is a nice starter - it's only a little over 200 with a slight turn to the left. You have to thread your throw between a hillside up on the left, and thick woods along the right
+ You'll notice that much of the course is on a pretty steep hillside, adding to the challenge. For example, hole #5 is a nice right dogleg, but the terrain is slanted down to your left. If you hang a RHFH shot out too straight, you'll be downhill, and in the woods
+ The thick overgrown woods make for genuine challenge and obstacles. Offline shots can end up in jail
- Two sets of tiny concrete teepads on most holes. They're so small that two of them wouldn't have enough surface area to make a single standard pad. So, be ready to throw standstill
- The "Advanced" and "Novice" tee locations are sometimes within about 10' of one another, and don't provide much difference in angles
- Hole #6 is a mess. It's VERY narrow, a bit downhill, and turns left-then-right in the space of about 250 feet. The overgrowth of trees eliminates realistic shapes: I think the only way to play this hole is along the ground, in 100' bites
- Hole #8 is so short: about 100 feet downhill through a window of trees. It's a fun ace run, but feels like a gimmick: you aim for the window and let gravity do the rest. It reminded me a little of Hole #12 up at Covered Bridge Park in Allentown. That hole is a bit more open, but it's sort of like throwing off a cliff: you flick your wrist and pray
~ When you get out of your car, you'll know you're in the right place when you see a basket marked #10. There is no Hole #10. I treated it as a practice basket
~ Even though it's short, it's not for beginners. Even though there are "Novice" tees, you don't want to bring newbies here. The lanes are too tight and the woods are too thick with prickers
~ There's a nice (if unremarkable) course here, underneath all the vines, thorns and branches. It's nice that it's here, but wish it were maintained
~ Bring your mids and your putters. Enjoy the challenge of threading tight shots, trading distance for accuracy. It's a fun 30 minutes
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Slightly Better Than Advertised!
Pros: Wow, talk about a popular park on a lovely sunny spring day. New Hanover Community Park had a steady stream of walkers and joggers all out enjoy the unseasonable warm weather. The disc golf course, however, was empty. I had it all to myself.
This little technical course starts just below the parking lot and weaves it's way through mostly a thick wooded area. It's a technically recreation course. Accuracy and hitting your lines will prove successful here.
The course has the very simple old fiberglass tee signs. Surprisingly, I don't remember any of them being trashed. There are two sets of small concrete pads cleverly called the Pro (Blue) and Am (Red) tees. They are small, probably 2' x 3'. Not much room for a run up but with these short holes you really don't need one. The designer did not get real creative when adding the Am tees. Often they are right in line with each other maybe just 25' apart. Seven baskets are Mach III's and there are two Discatchers.
The holes are all pretty similar. Usually you're throwing down a narrow path while trying to thread the needle through a narrow gap along the way. The rough is thick and filled with stickers. It's enviable that you're going to be spending some time surgically removing your disc from some entanglement.
My favorite hole was actually # 8, the shortie at just 115'. If you can hit this small window, you are definitely thinking Ace. If not, it's like wrestling with an unhappy tom cat. Bleeding is a real possibility.
Cons: Small concrete tees.
Constant thick underbrush to contend with. You will get tired of dealing with the clinging plants and nasty little stickery bushes. Course would be better in winter than in summer.
Certainly no where to throw any distance.
Not much separation between Reds and Blues tees. There's not enough that would make you want to play the course again because the different tees give you a totally different look.
Too much of a one trick pony.
Other Thoughts: There is a reason this course has such a abysmal rating. It's appeal is very limited. The occasional technical hole is acceptable but dealing with it hole after hole gets old. The course just lacks the enjoyment factor for me. I think New Hanover could use a good trimming, maybe open things up some. If nothing else, try to clean up the rough some. Give my scratched up legs a break.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Rewarding Shots but Punishing Gaps
7 Helpful / 1 Not
This used to be an outright lousy community course, with extremely narrow fairways in forest and tons of brush, but since the summer of 2018 it has improved to a short and technical 9er.
Still, it's more for intermediate or advanced players looking to improve to bullseye accuracy and throw challenging trajectories, the only thing beginner here are distances. But those who want to get a feel of how to scramble through woods and ravines should try it.
For locals, it's definitely worth a round and it fills an untended niche, but it's unlikely to become someone's regular haunt with much better courses nearby.
#1 is a cool curved shot, shaped by embankment, bit of a disc loss trap with vegetation growth come summer.
+I make an unofficial #10 out of the practice basket by teeing off across the street hockey rink.
+There are left and right curves to navigate and it has replay value.
+It will be mostly empty of other golfers, although the park itself is popular enough in summer.
The worst part of this course probably are the tees. Tiny concrete about the size of several large paver stones that allow for standing shots only. They had the audacity to originally place two per most holes a dozen feet apart, maybe, instead of making providing one decent tee. In the meantime, some went missing and some are in bad condition, broken in half, and hard to stand on.
Some tees are also badly positioned for no particular reason other than to make the tee shot awkward. #9, I'm looking at you. For years garbage tee shots, then I stepped off the tee two feet to the right and regularly park it by the basket now. Ignore them if it don't feel right, non-DGers must have placed them.
The fairways are advanced and are less than narrow. Many of the winding alley shots and thread the needles starts are extremely tight fits and are rather unforgiving. Those who miss or simply have bad luck will be forced to climb down valleys, ravines, stream gullies, or even the river chasing errant throws from #3, 4 & 5 and in the rough otherwise.
It feels like not enough space was given to the course and I'm not sure exactly why? There's ample unused light forest going down to the river around #3&4 that would have greatly uncramped the design. There need not be four narrow fairways (#1, 5, 6, 7) running side by side by side by side.
#4 is especially treacherous, with a narrow gap of trees shortly after the tee pads, just far away enough to be challenging. A deep ravine stream runs through that off-target disc can easily be kicked into more often than not. Even if that is made, a disc with deep fade can end up near the basket but then rolling downhill into the river. All is retrievable in several feet of clear water if you're prepared to get wet.
#5 gets a runner's up as an bigger anhyzer fairway the width of a path, with a valley to the left.
#8 is a jump putt masquerading as a hole.
-The fiberglass signs are also older than the crypt keeper, tired and spartan in detail.
-Field practice is constrained to about 300' length by the basketball court.
Out of OOOOO discs or XXXXX strikes:
Terrain: OOO - Good. Banks, ravines, elevation, river. Interesting features.
Execution: O - Poor. Course footprint too small. Tiny Tees. Some interesting holes.
Upkeep: OO - Passable. The last few years it seems somebody has cared.
Difficulty: OOO - More difficult than expected of a Community Course but not always in a good way.
Fun Factor: Oo - Passable. My second-least played course around here but still miles ahead of Earl Township on the other side of Boyertown area.
Crowd: x - Park has followers but almost none for DG.
Overall: Oo - Passable. Execution drags down course but is worth a try.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Baskets are okay. First couple of holes are okay.
Cons: Tee pads are useless - better to have natural tees then these little blocks. Heavy shule off most "fairways" - several holes were very hard to even know which direction you should be throwing. Lots of poison ivy everywhere. Ridiculously narrow fairways on many holes. Basket 9 is literally in the weeds with tall weeds growing up through the basket.
Other Thoughts: Hole 1 was fine - a 295-footer down a small gully where the hillside lets your errant throws roll right down to the basket. I thought "why is this course so maligned?". Then I played the rest of it. Ridiculously narrow fairways with nastiness off both sides. The only other long hole is #7 which "winds" through the woods - yeah it's about a 5 foot fairway that makes 3 turns as it snakes out its 328 feet. Unless you can throw a pineapple like Moe Howard, you have no chance to have any fun on this hole. One of the tees was completely surrounded by 3 foot weeds and woods and we had no idea which direction to throw. We found the short tee and used it instead. Hole #8 or #9 just has a solid wall of vegetation in front of the short tee. One of those courses where I wanted to walk off halfway through (and on every hole after that) but was convinced to persevere - it wasn't worth it. A real waste of decent baskets.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Stand and Deliver
Other Thoughts: A list of pros and cons for this course would be pretty one sided. In stead, I'm just going to tell you what you're going to get here.
The "Concrete tee pads" are big enough to put both of your feet on... At the same time!! No, really, they are, I swear. Seriously though, who needs a run-up when you're throwing 115'? Ok, from the "Advanced" tee the longest throw is actually 328' but other than perhaps that one, you're only throwing a putter or a mid all day. There are some interesting throws to try to make through the woods here. Even hole 8's 115' throw is kindof cool, you have to put it through a tiny window in the trees about half way to the basket but if you get through the hole, you're right on target for the ace. I almost put mine in but even the split second it looked good was long enough for me to think, "Oh no, I don't want to get my first ace on a little 115' phony baloney hole!" Or is it just gimmicky having to thread the needle on such a short throw? The rest of the holes aren't quite that short nor as tight. You're basically throwing along small walking paths in the woods. The rough didn't look too thick, but it's early in the year and things haven't grown in yet. There are a couple of slightly elevated baskets. I guess the OB sign behind one of them is to make the hole more challenging? Like the sign says, "Better luck next time." Did I mention 2 tee squares on almost every hole? If you feel like you need to throw from the shorter tees though, the tight throwing lanes are probably not going to make you very happy either. In other words, this in not a beginner friendly course in any way.
The whole course seems kinda gimmicky and to be honest, so much so that I'd have a hard time calling this a real course. If I lived in the neighborhood I'd probably come here for a quick practice round once in a while. If you're driving by, add another course to your played list and make a run at a 115' ace, but don't go out of your way to play here. Where else are you going to find a 9 hole course that doesn't have matching baskets? It takes longer to weave your way through the neighborhood streets to get here than it takes to play the 9 holes, and trust me, it's only 9 holes... You're not going to go around a second time to get in a full 18.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Could have been worse...
Pros: Clean, short, easy course. If you are a novice, like me, you might actually enjoy this course. I found it to be quite a relaxed stroll through the woods without having to worry too much about throwing my arm out just to have a chance at making par.
The holes are all pretty short, the longest being hole #7 I believe and the shortest being hole #8.
Small cement tees are all pretty nice except a few broken ones.
Cons: I was a bit confused my first time playing as to where to go since the signage for the course is either missing, vandalized, or misleading. But once I learned the flow of the course, it wasn't so bad.
I'm glad it was hot out the day I went, because I had to go swimming for a disc on hole #4, watch that one.
Some broken tee pads, missing signs, and over all course maintenance is needed.
Other Thoughts: All be it a pretty decent course for beginners. I may just play here again since it's so close to my home.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Short and Rough
Pros: -Baskets were all there. Most were Mach IIIs except 7 & 8 were brand new DISCatchers.
-Navigation was pretty straight forward. Most tees were visible from the previous basket and there were 2 tees for almost every hole.
The course played in a circle with hole 10 ending back at the parking lot.
Cons: -No room to air it out at all. Every hole was short and tight.
-Most holes had lines that were nearly impossible to hit or really had no line at all.
-VERY easy to lose a disc. The rough was rough.
-These were literally the shortest tee pads I have ever seen. They were all standstill room only unless you started behind.
-There was no tee for the basket labeled "10" we just played from the picnic table.
Other Thoughts: This course is definitely not worth going out of your way to play. If you're in the area and in the mood for looking for discs then this is the course for you. Otherwise, there are lots of other great courses in the vicinity.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Never Been So Happy To Finish A Course
Didn't lose a disc. Never have to play it again.
Number-8 was the best hole of the last four - and that's because it was missing.
Course plays on the ever-narrowing paths through the trees/brush along the side of a small neighbourhood park. The first indication the course has some problems are the extremely tiny pair of concrete tee "pads" at #1, continued throughout the course. Long tee-2 backs up into a tree and bushes, so you essentially have to stand and throw without too much back-swing. The simple-but-effective signs begin to worsen at hole-4. Basket-5 is 6' high (hmm, okay for something different, I guess), but inexplicable out-of-bounds just a few feet away.
Hole-6, long, is where things become sadistic Basket is maybe 250' away, at the end of a brush/tree-lined, 8'-wide path. The shape of your shot needs to be straight about 25', 60-degree left-turn, straight about 175', then a mini left-right S-shape at the end. Hole-7 lengthens things by 50', narrows the width by a couple of feet, makes the final 75' be right-then-left, and doubles the thickness of the brush and undergrowth - you will be searching for your drive, and probably your approach, too, 99% of the time on this hole. You're relieved that basket-8 no longer exists, and at least #9, a blind, right-turner, around a 4'-wide path lined with loads of thick brush, is under 200', and also means you're done with the torture!
This course came ever so close to being my first zero, but the first five holes were actually, although short, decent enough - #4, from open into woods, narrow entry, slight left, major slope behind basket, was actually a good hole.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The baskets are in excellent condition except for #8 which is currently missing. It is a good course for improving your short game. There are 2 tees for each hole. Just about every basket is visible from the tee. Next tees are not far away from basket, almost impossible to get lost.
Cons: Very small concrete tee pads. Some lettering on the tee signs is falling off. Some tee pads are starting to fall apart.
Other Thoughts: There is a hole with a 6 ft. high basket. Adds something different to the course. Disc loss in fall and winter should not be a problem but i'm sure in summer the brush is very thick.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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