I Have No Problem Calling This A Destination Course!
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Lion's Park is not in Temple, Texas. I must have taken a wrong turn and ended up in Pennsylvania or somewhere else that has some elevation. Lion's Park is a big, beautiful park with lovely, sweeping views every time you turn around. Driving in, I could see that wasn't going to be the typical, flat golf course type course that I have been playing in Texas for the last week.
I was shocked that when you enter the park there is a sign that reads, "Disc Golf-Throw 1." Did the director let his 8 year daughter design that sign? Is there actually someone working for a parks & recreation department who is that clueless? And how about the supervisory staff who approved it?
At the start of the yummy 1st hole, there is a kiosk, garbage cans and a big concrete barrier that acts as a bench. Well, at least, no one is going to walk off with this bench. I've never seen one of these used as a bench on any course before and now, I think this is the 3rd Texas course that has had them. The concrete tee pads are good and the signs are small metal ones that have the route and the next tee on them. The baskets are Discatchers with many miles on them. There are two sets of pads. The longs can add as much as 360' to a hole (# 2 ) or greatly add to the difficulty like on # 5 or 12.
Back to # 1. The course starts you off in grand style with 1 & 2. # 1 is just a fun 289' downhill with a little hyser needed. Then # 2 from the long tee is 871'. The long tee is uphill a ways so you can watch your disc fly forever. That little speck of yellow you glimpse sitting in the far corner of the field is the basket. You can shorten the hole by about 350' by throwing from the short pad but it's not nearly as fun as the tee is almost to the base of the hill.
I think the course designers did a masterful job of mixing the distances such as the stretch of holes 9-10-11-12 which measure 185'-692'-450 and then my personal favorite hole, # 12, which plays 283' up a beautiful, little hillside to the basket set back in this pretty section.
Cons: For all that I love about this Lion's Park DGC, I do have a few cons.
The navigation is a little tricky at times. It just doesn't flow naturally like some courses. I did appreciate the next tee sign after # 4. I did manage to get semi-lost after # 5 and tried playing to some old basket (# 10) set in the corner and then # 11 playing back to the horseshoe pits before finding # 5, the over the swamp throw.
Then after playing # 21, I went over a played a couple basket across the park road including one with this amazing, really plush green carpeting. It had a # 15 on the side and I know I had already played # 15, a big sweeping 300' anhyser playing hole.
One of my personal course pet peeves are pads that are not level. Lion's Park has a couple. # 1 slants down and the # 8 pad is tilted up.
Players waiting or teeing off on # 20 could possibly be hit with a drive thrown by a player teeing off on 19. Yes, I know it shouldn't happen if the player teeing on # 19 just opens his eyes and players sitting at # 20 will probably should be aware. But here are some really clueless people around. A small fence/wall should be built by the # 20 tee pad. I just saw a safety wall like this, that incorporated a bench and bag holders in it's design. It was very well done.
Other Thoughts: Although not perfect, Lion's Park DGC is a top course. I'd call it a destination course, especially for those who haven't had the opportunity to play with elevation. It's beautiful. It has the elements that players are looking for such as water carries, risk/reward throws, long bomber holes, Ace Runs, technical throws through the trees, greater challenge playing from the longs and some lovely views at the surrounding country. And yes, this is Texas, not Pennsylvania.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Seemed like the front had dried out very nicely, so no flooding to report.
The course is very challenging. Long holes, short holes with hazards like water and woods. Good Variety of shots. Backhands/Forehands. Great use of the hillside on the front for a nice scenic and elevation changes. Baskets are in great shape. Everything was very well marked in my eyes. I am not from Temple area and I had no problem navigating the course. It was very pleasant and I would DEF play again.
Cons: Having to cross the paths in a couple of places meant I had to wait for the other people to enjoy their walking/running/etc. I hope that anyone reading this knows that we SHARE most parks and that disc golf is just one of the MULTI uses of most parks. So be patient and let the doggers dog and the joggers jog before you huck. Some of the holes just seem to be dropped into some open areas with no real reason. Just huge open areas that could have been more thought out, but if you have a huge arm, you might enjoy chucking down an open field for 900', but I thought with all the open space a more thought out couple of holes would be nice.
Other Thoughts: I loved this place. A beautiful setting. Goregeous and well maintained. Thanks for all the efforts in getting this course set up and for taking such good care of it.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: This course was great, it had alot of challenge. There is a good mix of open holes as well as wooded and water holes.
Cons: A few very long holes with low pars. Some other events going on at the same time, however they were not set up in the way of the course.
Other Thoughts: We will be back to play here again!
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Great Course, All Around
Pros: Temple really does have it pretty good: two really fun courses right in town, and Lion's Park is the superior of the two. This course offers tests to just about every part of your game, with just about as pretty a course as you could hope to play in Central TX.
The course is really two parts, Holes 1-11 and then 12-21. Holes 1 through 11 will stretch out your power game, but demands little technicality in your shots, with a couple of exceptions (#3 is an example, with water surrounding the basket on three sides). The course does make good use of the moderate elevation chanes, with 8 and 9 as notable examples. A chain out on either hole usually turns into a three-put, as these misses have a nasty habit of rolling 25-35 feet down the hill. 10 and 11 present two good scoring opportunities before the second half starts.
The more technically demanding second half of the course features trees on every single hole, and elevation changes on others that offer a challenge for even very skilled players. You will use nearly every shot on these holes, from power throws, hyzers, anhyzers, tomahawks and even rollers. #17 is the showpiece of the course, with a basket tucked high on a the side of a hill, protected by trees on all sides except for a small window in the very front. The hole is especially picturesque in the spring, when Bluebonnets frame the foreground of the wooded area where the basket sits. 18 is a short but wicket par 4 that almost requires a well-placed roller off the tee, and a 2nd shot (and maybe a 3rd) through very tight windows framed by trees. Even the last three holes are tricky. They appear short and accessible at first glance, but a drive that misses even by a few inches can turn even these shorter holes into trouble in a hurry. The designer did a great job with the last half of the course, where great shots are almost always rewarded, but good shots rarely so.
The facilities at the park are good, with concrete tee pads on all holes except one, and well-maintaned, two-layer chain baskets. The open section of the park offers more in the way of paths and facilities (i.e. bathrooms) than the latter half. The course is mowed regularly. Signs at the tee pads are accurate, and tees are generally easy to find, but, as always, it never hurts to ask a local where to go if you're confused. Other patrons are typically very friendly and more than happy to help out.
Cons: The first eleven holes are a little dull for some, especially juxtaposed to the last ten. I talk to many who skip the first eleven for this reason, but I also talk to some who say they skip much of the last ten because they're too hard, so skill level may come into play. South Temple may be a better place to learn the game for most beginners.
The park has soccer and baseball fields, and people often go out to exercise or just relax in the sun. This is typical for a well-kept park, obviously, but some of the non-golfing patrons seem oblivious to players on the tee sometimes. Almost every time I play at Lion's, I end up waiting for a mother and child(ren) to look at some grass between me and the basket, though this is never a problem once you get away from the high traffic areas after 11.
Another problem the course suffers from is poor drainage on the lowest holes. Holes 2-7 may be unpleasant to play after a good rain. I've seen 6 require over 2 weeks to dry out.
Other Thoughts: Overall, Lion's Park is a very fun round of disc golf, and the best experience between Waco and Austin. Bring your favority playing partners and get ready for a great round that will likely test your entire game.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 8 Not
my 1st birdie!
Pros: accurate map. good combination of long and shorts. got my 1st birdie on hole #5
Cons: watch out for walkers along path. very wet after several days of rain. lost a great disc on hole #6.
Other Thoughts: i would definitely play this course again.... after dries up.
1 of 9 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I played this course for the first time on Dec 10, 2011. We are playing this course again for our League round on Sunday, December 18th, 2011.
#12-21 are the best part about this course for my particular style which favors technicality over distance.
Nice baskets and teepads, and some water comes into play which I always appreciate. I think every course should have a water hole or 2 to be considered excellent or better.
Has a decent variety of shots: big bombs, placement drives, thumbers, over the water throws, downhill/uphill, a few technical throws. I mainly throw RHBH and don't think I used a sidearm once?
21 holes that are all very fun to play using contrasting styles.
This is a great course to play doubles from the longs.
Cons: Perhaps unfairly, I had a friend tell me that this course was better than Circle C, which is generally considered to be the top course in Austin. It's easy to get spoiled by such courses.
I would say East Metro Park in Manor and Circle C in Austin are more worthy of a 4.5 rating as many people are giving Lion's in these reviews. Lion's had a couple of minor flow issues in comparison and holes that were long for the sake of distance. Which makes this a solid 3.5-4.0 instead.
Let me also say that I truly prefer technical woods courses since I don't throw 450'+. If you are like me, then you may want to play #12-21 twice and just skip the entire front part of the course thru Hole 11, although there are a few cool holes that are worth checking out there, too.
#9 could be improved by adding a teepad in the section of grass behind the normal tee, maybe 100' straight back or more just across the little road.
#12 could stand to have at least one good anny line towards the basket. Right now it's setup for a placement shot to the rear of the upper fairway, but would be more fun if there was a better chance to break through the line of trees and get closer to the basket for a birdie op. Maybe I don't know the secret line, yet.
The first eleven remind me a bit of Old Settlers Park, mostly wide open and mostly long holes with no need for pinpoint accuracy. You can throw almost any line and even on a yank or grip-lock you can still do about the same as if you executed your throw to perfection. I had a few really bad turnovers that left me ~100' to one side of everybody else and we still tied the holes. So if you throw ~350' on flat ground like me, then Pars are no problem here (not a con).
Other Thoughts: I did not review this to rail on Lion's, it IS a solid course. I was a bit miffed by the 4.5 ratings and wanted to give a fair clarification of my reasons why it is just a notch below that. But hey, such ratings are really arbitrary based on each reviewers frame of reference, so it's better to read the actual review than judge by # stars.
We also played the South course off 5th, which was like a baby Old Settler's Park, but actually better than OSP. It's dead flat and mostly open with a few really fun holes. It's kinda like a burger with mayo and cheese only, one that would be better with some bacon and avocado, but the restaurant just doesn't have those ingredients available. Lion's is better than that one easily. However, they are both worth checking out if you are going thru Temple. The Sin Tex Club from Austin had a great time at both places!
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This place has an awesome mix of shots. From open driving-based holes(#2,7,10,11,14) to technical 90 degree turns through heavy woods(#12,13,18), to holes with hills that seem to be able to send your disc rolling very far away from your intended lie (#8,9,12,17), to shots that go over a water hazard which will gladly take your disc forever(#3,5); this course has everything. Through all 21 holes, the scenery keeps changing and changing. It is a very big course. If you go out with a few friends, prepare to spend about two hours there if you intend to play all 21 holes. The first half of the course is mostly open. So if that's your thing, it's there for you. The last half is mostly heavily wooded areas for all you technical people. Either way, the shot balance that is set up in this course makes it a well-rounded experience for any player. The upkeep here is very nice. Taking into account the size of the park, the fact that they're able to keep the grass at a decent level is amazing. There are bathrooms in reasonable locations, (one by the parking lot by Hole #1 and another by Hole #5). My personal favorite hole is #13: it's a cool little par 3 where the basket is uphill, to the left, across a creek, and surrounded by trees. Hole #12 is also a nice one. The basket for that one is set blindly up a steep hill, which itself is surrounded by relatively tall trees, and the basket is to the right. If you don't have a good shot that will fade right, (which I don't), this hole will make you wish you did. Also, the baskets for holes #12,13,15,18 are all blind baskets.
Cons: Some fairways have mud that takes a long time to dry out. There is a walking track that runs the entire length of the fairway of Hole #6. That same walking track comes into play on a good number of other holes as well, but hole #6 is the worst in that regard. The navigation can be confusing in a couple of spots. Namely, going from the basket for #2 to the box for #3, (alot of people mistake the box for #7 for #3 because it is way closer to #2 than #3 is), and going from #9 to #10 (if you don't notice #10 and #11, which are in a field by themselves, you might accidentally continue to #12 since it is closer to #9 than #10 is). Also, there isn't anything overly special about Hole #7 and #10. #7 is just a straight ahead and open par 3. #10 and #11 are both straight ahead par 4s that are located right next to each other in the same open field, but at least Hole #11 plays across a creek, whereas #10 has nothing that is really distinguishing.
Other Thoughts: Watch out for pedestrians! First time = Bring a map. Don't lose a disc in the pond by Holes #3,4,5. I've been in there twice and neither time was enjoyable. Unless, of course, you like standing in calf-deep mud and chest-deep murky water while constantly regretting your decision to enter the pond and retrieve the special disc that you just couldn't let go of. Overall, I am very glad that I have the chance to play this course as often as I do. It is definitely the nicest and most well-rounded course between Waco and Austin.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: To someone that knows how to play it is a very challenging and long course. It allows all skill levels to play. It is fun on a bad day.
Cons: If you throw high on the back 9 of this course tou are more likely to lose your disc. No trash cans so people leave trash ( pack it in pack it out! ) Construction between 3-6 for soccer field changes course.
Other Thoughts: I will play every chance i get. Will suggest this course to anyone.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
An Unexpected Gem
This course is surprisingly diverse. Holes lengths range from 185' to 800' over flat to hilly terrain. I loved the fact that start throwing over open terrain, then suddenly moving through that "hill country" type hole, and finally ending in some tight wooded golf that reminded me of Colorado. Four holes play water, and I'm sure hole #3 has eaten many discs, but good conservative play should keep experienced golfers dry.
There are adequate concrete tees, and some holes have fantastic signs with numbers and distances while others are severely lacking. Eight holes have alternate tee boxes for the big arms, and more experienced players. There are also other things to do in the park, so feel free to bring the family, but the course itself is not stroller friendly. Navigation was pretty easy, but I still recommend bringing a map to help guide your way. This especially comes handy in blind shots like #15 or #17.
The bread and butter of this course IMO is definitely holes #12 through #21. Some holes had a back nine Harry Myers DGC
feel to it, coupled with fantastic tight wooded holes that I might play at Sundance Trail Ranch DGC
, in Colorado. If you're a sucker for hilly short shots that force you to be accurate - you'll love this run. But, if you're into big open drives there are four to five good holes for you too.
BEST HOLE/S: #12
Cons: Holes #10 and #11 are filler, and I almost wish they would make it a 19-hole course and just forget about them. However, some people argue this provide that additional length many players want - so you can decide when you play it. Reviewers argue that part of the front nine is repetitive, but only #6, #10, and #11 are boring. Out of 21 holes - that's not bad. As previously mentioned - you may just want to skip #10 and #11 and move on to a very cool #12.
There is a walk between holes after #2, #4, and #6, and unfortunately after the big rains - it's a soggy mess. This isn't normally an issue however in the dryer climate. Also, hole #7 is the only tee without a concrete tee and it's only marked by a small temporary sign, so watch for it. Bottom line however is that more of these cons are nit-picky at best, but surely things to consider for improvement.
WORST HOLE/S: #6; #7
I think the best part of Lion's Park was how unexpectedly good it was, and it borders on having a 4.5 rating. I mean, I knew it was a well rated course, and read a lot of reviews, but this is a great example of how you truly have to experience a course for yourself to understand.
Granted, it's not polished like many courses you'd find in the Austin area, but besides my round at Rivery Park
, this was by far the best disc golf experience I had in my Waco, Temple, and north Austin tour. I highly recommend this place to anyone in the area or even in the Austin and Waco area. There are always things to critique about courses, but ultimately it's about the overall experience, and this was certainly a surprising gem.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Sweet course and by far the best in town. This course has great elevation and uses every bit of it, not only on the tee but on many of the greens. The shots range from open boomers shots and then you get some great tunnel shots as well. You must have all types of shots to score well. The teepads and the baskets are all sweet and in good shape. The tee signs are nice too and having dual tees is a bonus also. Plenty of areas that can get you into trouble if your not careful making the round exciting. Navigation wont be an issue even for the newcomers and there isnt too many people there so you can throw multiple shots and not worry about messing with anyone else. Almost every hole out here is sweet and makes this a sure stop for anyone!
Cons: This course is usually always windy and there isnt much shade if at all. Some of the holes are open and boring but sometimes thats what happens so not that big of a deal.
Other Thoughts: Mix both of these courses in town for a great time and a mix of 2 courses.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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