The Perfect Start To Any Epic Road Trip
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: (3.716 Rating) A private paradise that will please a wide swath of players.
- CHARACTER - I had a tough time deciding on how to start off the pros for Bud Hill. All of key attributable qualities I've assigned for this course came in at around 70 to 80 percentile. So, to start, I'll mention the club house I saw driving up. Amen. It's a 300 square foot chill area complete with comfy chairs, a TV, a poker table, a guest book and memorabilia. On the course, there's seating on every hole and most are shaded very well. There's a small shelter on tee (2). The signage and navigation, I'd say is above average, although not nearly to the level of all these new public courses with the $30,000 plus budgets. Multi tees occur on numerous holes and I think there were a couple alternate basket placements as well. Also bag hangers and a porta-potty.
- CHALLENGING - A low end intermediate level course I think from the original tees and probably a tweener between intermediate and advanced level from the back tees. As an intermediate player myself, I shot a 54 playing mostly the original tees, but I mixed in a couple back tees as well. I think the challenge and multi tees will appeal to players between 800 and 950 which is vast majority of the player population. Players above the 950 range will slay this course.
- UNIQUENESS - Constant elevation movement but manageable. A great mixture of relatively open thru heavily wooded holes. Four water clears, a few bombers and some nice shot shaping opportunities. What's missing the most however is the multi-play hole. This is par 54 course and other than hole (4) there really isn't much in the way hole management. Very few significant benders unlike the adjacent "The Ridge" layout. (17) I thought was the only substantial sweeping RHBH hyzer play. I don't recall anything breaking much to the right.
- RAW BEAUTY - A lot better than most courses. The tee shots on (6) and (7) are both signature looks using elevation and water. (11) and (12) are also a pair of appealing wooded valley plays. (14) and (18) are both nice looking water plays. I could see someone arguing that the airport gate benches at the tees look dumpy, but then others saying its part of the rustic nature feel of the course. There are also handful of average looking lightly wooded holes. In totality I scored Bud Hill about 40th out of 270 courses played as of this review.
- DONATIONS WELCOMED - Bud Hill is not a pay to play private course. However, anyone that plays here and doesn't throw a few bucks into the donation bucket is not a person I'd want to throw with. It's remarkable what the owner has done here without a park's department budget to work with. Please do what you can to support and thank him for his efforts.
Cons: I have to get epic picky to find issues with Bud Hill. A few of the below listed cons are provided for information only and play little to no impact on my ratings.
- LOOSE DISC OPPS - A pond comes into play 4 times. So I advise bringing a couple junkers for those that are deafly afraid to lose a favorite disc. I carry a floater but only threw it once on (14). Had I lost one on the other 3 water holes, I deserved it. There are also a few big thicket areas that could take a substantial search to find a disc that's playing hind and seek.
- LOCATION - Way out in the middle of nowhere Memphis. My GPS did not take me to the right place at first. My advise would be is to keep on a lookout for the metal Bud Hill entrance sign with words "closed" below it.
- TEES - Mostly 4 by 10 concrete tees. 270 courses in the bag for me and this size and surface type grades out as average. I wished I had more surface to work with several tee shots.
- CHAINS - Like many private courses I've played, that baskets are not always top of the line models. I believe they were MachVs but a couple may have been something else.
- BEGINNER FRIENDLY - Bringing a beginning player here is doable, but probably not ideal with the hoards of hazard free rec courses out there to choose from. As stated above, there are water hazards and also some of the tighter lines are just not good for players not adjusted to releasing at a consistent point. Be prepared to lose a disc when bringing a first timer out here.
- TERRAIN - IMO I thought the course was somewhat cart friendly. There some interesting transitions along (6-7) and also (11-12) which play through a wooded area with elevation changes.
- PARKING - Not the greatest driveway leading to the course parking area. Its gravel and there's some pitting. 95% of the cars should be fine, but for anyone with a low riding vehicle or one that doesn't do well with shifting gravel, it would be best to find another option to travel here. The parking lot is also gravel.
Other Thoughts: Bud Hill was my first targeted course on a 5-day road trip to hit destination courses. It's truly a gem of a course that has aged well over time. I only met the owner briefly on the way out, and in that short time I could tell that he is great steward for the disc golf community. A big thanks to him for his contributions to the sport. As for the course, I have a feeling that this is likely a big favorite in Memphis. IMO The vibe is amazing, which is obviously a subjective feeling, and it contributes only a very small fraction in my ratings. Currently I have Bud Hill as my personal 5th highest rated TN course. Significantly behind Harmon Hills and Panther Creek, a touch behind both Cedar Hills and Seven Oaks, but a touch better than both Cane Ridge and The Sinks. I played all of these courses in a 6-month time frame, so I'm confident in my personal rankings for these 7 courses. There are two main reason for this placement, the hole variety and the challenge. It's not that Bud Hill doesn't excel in these two attributes, cause it does. It's just that the before mentioned courses that I've rated higher just go a bit further. I really enjoy the multi-play +500 foot holes and Bud Hill only has one of these. The elevation usage at Bud Hill is great, but again, all of the before mentioned courses that I've rated higher have holes that go more epic. As for challenge, I think it needs to be dialed up a bit more to appease the +950s. In all, I think Bud Hill is a "Great" course, which is how classify the courses that I have scored at around the 3.75 mark. My 3.75s are the tweener courses I've rated between 3.5 "very good" and the 4.0 "excellent", thus the term "Great."
- TIME PLAY - Average. figure two hours for a 4 some.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: Great owners. Beautiful property!! There are 2- 18 hole courses to play. Long and short! They kind of describe then as the guys and girls course because of the length of the courses. Mostly wooded with water here and there. Some good field shots. Just all around fun!!
Cons: Only thing I can think of is that it is way off the beaten path, but still worth the drive.
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Very well maintained
Great signs and easy to navigate
Owner is super friendly
Too many to name
I live 5 hours away.
Other Thoughts: A great mix of open holes, technical holes. Baskets are in great shape. If passing nearby I would highly recommend playing.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
This Bud's for All of Us
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Original course at Bud Hill makes excellent use of its inherently diverse terrain. Elevation comes into play in a variety of ways from rolling hills to gradually changing fairways to steep inclines. These elevation changes combine with the wide-ranging levels of tree cover in many ways; you'll never see the same shot twice. Wooded holes are often thinned enough and laid out smartly enough to encourage multiple strategies: the most obvious line - if one can be found - isn't always the best line. The mental game here is quite engaging without being fatiguing.
Wooded holes are intermixed smartly with more open ones, and several holes merge these two basic environments in varied ways. Distances are equally mixed, and water hazards come into play a few times in fair but relevant ways. The overall result is a course rich in shot variety that won't be fully solved in a single play through. There's a lot to keep you coming back.
Although plenty of holes involve moderate to heavy tree cover, there's an equal share of more open holes here that often remain technical if more lightly so. This lends Bud Hill with a more casual sense than many of the top-tier courses I've played. You won't get bored, but you also won't get beat down. The short tees further enhance this sense: my wife, a disc golf newbie, enjoyed playing through many holes here.
The course is mowed weekly which is no small feat. Navigation is a breeze thanks to excellent signage. Club house is available to recoup between rounds and there's a portajohn on site. The owners could not be more warm and hospitable.
Cons: There's a bit too much openness for my general taste; a little more technicality by means of tree cover would make an already great course exceptional. At the same time however this openness seems part of Bud Hill's particular character, so I chalk some of this up to personal preference.
The course could perhaps use a bit more distance at times. At 5922 ft from the long tees and par 3s across the board it feels as though there's a bit of untapped potential. A little more stretching out would go a long way. But again, this could be due to personal preference.
The concrete tees were on the short side. And being raised off the ground often made starting your run up from behind them impossible. These tees also got very slippery when wet.
Other Thoughts: Playing Bud Hill was a delight for me. Lots of times such regionally-loved courses can disappoint to the outsider who doesn't have a horse in the race. But in the case of Bud Hill this was thankfully not so; I had a blast here and really loved my round, rain be darned. Definitely a must-visit if you're in the area.
Special thanks to Danny and Barbara for their abundant hospitality.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: It's an excellent course. It was my first time playing on a private course and had some confusion as to what I needed to do.
When you get there, there's a rule sheet that indicates you need to call Danny. I emailed him before I got there to make sure it would be okay to play. When I got there, I tried to call but couldn't reach him. However, a nice guy named Riley introduced himself and gave me the lay of the land. All you need to do is sign the release form and then head into the woods right next to the donation box (yeah, make sure you make a small donation) and you're off.
The course was easy to navigate. I was actually playing behind a group of 4-5 and had a guide to help but definitely could have figured out the flow w/o them... except for 17. As others have noted 17 is tricky to find... to be honest... I still don't know where it is! While they were teeing off at 17, I was trying to get a disc out of a tree on 16 so I totally missed the pad. I'll need to ask next time I'm out where this is.
This course really does have a mix of everything... from woods, to open throws, to tricky left/right hand shots, and water. Yes... water. I hate water hazards. 14 can especially be tricky if you're a LHBH thrower as the water hazard is a large pond on the right of the basket. 6 and 7 can also be a little intimidating for a beginner/rec player as myself. I just played these from the drop zone just to feel a little bit safer throwing discs for these two holes. Oh and 18. You have throw across a pond. This one isn't as intimidating but still can be. I threw a floating disc on this one just in case though I do believe that this pond wasn't that deep.
All in all, it was a great experience and hope to go back and play it again as well as the more technical ridge.
Cons: Not a super friendly course for beginners/rec players. Water hazards can be intimidating.
Other Thoughts: Bring bug spray/mosquito repellent. I got eaten alive. It was my own fault for forgetting.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Man.. what a fun, wonderful place
Pros: This is a fantastic spot just north of Memphis with about 80 acres devoted to Disc Golf lovers. The course consists of 38 holes (a short, tight wooded 18 and a championship-quality 18 with 2 alternates). The course has a full-time ambassador/maintenance-guy/caretaker/concierge, DooRagg. You'll definitely want to meet him there (will be hard not to) and hopefully get a round in with him. I was in Memphis for work all last week and ended up playing Libertyland Monday night and Bud Hill every other night for he rest of the week. I couldn't stop coming here! If you're anywhere near southwest Tennessee, contact the gracious owner Danny and get yourself a teetime. Here're my thoughts on the Original (long) course
-Easy navigation. The course flows back to the clubhouse (yes, there's a clubhouse) between 8 and 9
-Don't miss the 2 alternate holes between 2 and 3. Hop into the woods by the 2nd basket and you'll go up the tight hill for the first alternate and back down for an absolutely beautiful 350 ft tunnel shot.
-teepads are excellent and vary in length depending on the hole
-water comes smartly into play on 5 holes. on 14, you'll squeamishly throw downhill 320 ft with water to the right of the basket and trees to the left.
-18 ends with an ace run over water right down from a tent-covered gathering area to relax after a round.
-Great locals who clearly play there weekly and are very hospitable to the out-of-towners
-EXCELLENT MAINTENANCE. grass was short, probably cut weekly. woods were cleared, clever placement of shrubs, great tee signs
-Porto-pot onsite by the clubhouse because Danny and DooRagg love you
-Clubhouse is rustic but looks well equipped to BBQ, get out of the weather, and relax after rounds
Cons: -not an extremely difficult course, for those who were looking to get beat up. It's a strong par 3 course with 2 or 3 par 4 holes
-I almost stepped on about 50 toads hopping across the wooded fairways. watch out, they're everywhere
-that's all I got, this place is wonderful
Other Thoughts: This is a DGCR top 10 destination course for a reason. The land is perfectly suited and the people who run it are fully committed! With Danny's blessing of course, camping here for a few days would be well worth your time. Donation box next to the first tee (be sure to show them your love in return). Thanks!
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Best Course in the Area
Pros: -Very well maintained
-Friendly and inviting atmosphere
-Good course variation between open and wooded. Offers tee shots that have what I would describe as "fairways" with woods lining the sides.
-Challenging, but rewards good shots
Cons: -Difficult to find
-Located out of the way
Other Thoughts: I originally read about this course on this website and decided to visit it with a couple of friends. The first time we played it we nearly gave up looking for the course because we could not find the entrance. Right before we gave up, we realized how to get in. I am glad that we found the course that time, because it may be my favorite course that I have ever played. It is very well maintained and such a great experience. If it was located in a better area and was easier to find, I would probably make the trip to play it more. It is definitely worth coming and playing if you aren't local. If I lived in the area, I would probably play this all the time.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Great course! Excellent hole variation with some left to right, some right to left and some dead straight tunnel shots. Also an excellent variety of wooded holes and more open fairways. This course has it all, and presents an awesome day of disc golf to any who decide to come and play it. Not only is the variety a great plus for this course but the difficulty is perfect as well. There are a few holes that are very birdie friendly, and some that are more difficult. Great for beginners and more experienced players as well.
Cons: There were a few times navigation was tricky (finding hole 17 in particular), and I've lost a couple of discs here, which is always unfortunate. Several tees are short which on the longer holes can be annoying. Usually though, the tee length is adequate for the hole in question.
Other Thoughts: All things considered a great disc golf location. A big thanks to Danny and Barbara for making Bud Hill disc golf all that it is. This course is one of the best in Memphis, and one of the most well known in the South for good reason. I highly recommend it to anyone visiting looking to play a round or two.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Unbelievable Experience. Disneyland for disc golfers
Pros: I can't say enough about the entire experience of playing this course. First, the local crew there is amazing. I played the course as I was coming through town on business, and they let me jump right in on doubles night. Very welcoming, very cool group. The entire course is so private and well manicured, it feels like you are at a disc golf resort. There is so much variation over the course of 18 holes. Elevation, tunnel, water, long bombs, short throws, hyzers, anhyzer, everything. In my opinion, this course is one of the standards for all others to be compared against. It is worth any amount of traveling to be able to play Bud Hill.
Cons: It seems like it can get a little muddy at times. Keep in mind this is not some weak-sauce city park that is maintained by the government with a playground for little kids. This is a golf retreat for real men that are not afraid to go on a golf safari. Be prepared to walk, hike, crawl, whatever it takes to beat your friends. In my opinion this is not a "con". This is what makes it great, but I notice lots of people complaining on here about courses not being perfectly landscaped and trimmed with wet wipes available whenever they need them.
Other Thoughts: Did I mention this course is amazing. Cause it is.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Disc Golf Heaven
Pros: Just a beautiful place to play. Not just challenging, but INTERESTING, which is a much higher standard.
Cons: Not much. Maybe some par fours but this is a labor of love and I really don't want to start nit-picking.
Other Thoughts: As with my 'Ridge' review, I'm keepin it short because 'Mr. Mirth' gets it right. See his review. A BIG thank you though to Teddy, Danny, and all the guys for a real down welcome at this most excellent destination Disc Golf Heaven. Bring Danny some money to pay for all this. It takes a lot of love and lucre to make things this good and it shows.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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