9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: NOTE: This review is for the old layout. Construction forced some holes to be redesigned, and the newest (2014) layout has not been reviewed yet.
Gary Rains was the mad scientist who cooked this one up in his laboratory and he did a great job. He deserves a great deal of praise. But Carl Shumacher was Gary's tireless henchman who has put in countless hundreds of hours and an incredible amount of work building this course; without him the course wouldn't be where it is today! Please make sure to thank Gary and Carl for all of their very hard work!
*Variety and more variety! By my count there are 12 different layouts. The Advanced course has 2 sets of tees and 4 layouts for each tee (baskets in A, B, A&B, or B&A positions). Then the Rec course has 4 more layouts. If you want to frequently play something different then Leigh Farms is the place to go!
*2 basket positions on all holes!
*2 sets of tees- White and Gold. 11 holes have 2 tees while the rest have one shared tee.
*Length variety is excellent. For example, in the White-Short layout: 3<199/ 8 of 200-299/ 5 of 300-399/ 2 of 500-510. In the Gold-Long layout: 3 of 255-295/ 10 of 300-399/ and 425, 455, 525, 735, 800. By contrast, the Rec-Short course has 14<199/ 3 of 200-265/ 1 of 335.
*Elevation changes on most holes, but most are moderate
*Fairway shape variety is quite good
*Terrain variety is pretty good. Most layouts have about 9-10 wooded holes, 6-7 mixed foliage, and 2 open grassy holes.
*The Rec course would be a good place to bring beginners (if you help them navigate it).
*Tee signs are top quality! They may be the best in the Triangle.
-For first timers the course takes a lot of mental effort (and some time) to fully grok how all of the Rec and Adv holes fit together and how to navigate your way on the two courses.
-You can't see 9 baskets from the tee, so first timers will need to do some scouting, but there are excellent maps on every tee sign.
-Map: The Rec course map has a few holes that are inaccurate and need to be redone. The Advanced course needs a better map. Both maps need to have both basket placements marked.
While the course was being built I heard some grumbling (but many disc golfers grumble anyway). I think the problem was that the designers had a vision for the finished course that they could see in their minds, but most others couldn't look at the current state of construction and see or understand where they were going. Then the work to produce the vision proceeded in an unusual way that appeared haphazard, so some people got frustrated trying to figure out what was going on, and they gave the course a bad rap. Now that the course is finished I think we can all see more clearly what the designers were envisioning. The course has turned out very nicely especially as it has gotten more amenities and navigational aids. I only hope that some of the bad vibes don't linger because I really like this course.
~My favorite hole- Advanced 14. A straight slightly downhill wooded hole that requires you to hit your line. The basket is guarded by a small creek bed in front.
~Course beauty is above average overall. Some holes are very scenic while others are merely average.
~Tee material: concrete is not allowed so they have large rubber mats. They work well, but may not be everyone's favorite.
~Location: the course is 3 minutes off of I-40 so it's very easy to get to if you're in that area.
Overall this is a really good, solid course that offers tons of variety. Pros and Advanced players will enjoy the long tees, Intermediate players will enjoy the white tees, and beginners will like the Rec layout. Leigh Farms is well worth a visit to play!
A note about my rating:
My rating is a subjective measure of my enjoyment
of the course, on the day I played it, and it is NOT intended to be a measure of the quality
of the course. My Enjoyment Ratings are given "on the curve" in relation to all other courses I've played.
Look in the "Links/Files" section for my files with Hole-by-hole ratings and a more detailed Overall review. You can also read more of my review philosophy and rating notes at Disc Golf Course Reviews
I'm always trying to improve my reviews, so if you mark this review unhelpful or you find a mistake, please send me a Personal Message to tell me what is wrong with it. I'll be grateful for the feedback.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Lost in 'Leighs Lair'
Pros: Starting off I like to let everyone know what Im personally looking for in a course. I love the scenic aspect of disc golf (this includes boulders, lakes, wildlife, and plantlife- I do study horticulture). With that being stated, I rate a course based on a combination of the scenic factor and the overall course aspects (this includes layout, fairway lines, divesity of holes, and amenities)
Diversity, diversity, diversity! I found myself throwing every shot in my bag the two rounds I endured on the lair. This includes flicks through super tight lines, backhands throughout several open bomber holes, and some overhanded shots trying to scramble to save par.
Super challenging fairways lined with all sorts of native shrubs, grasses, and geophytes.
Several elevated baskets that most certainly provides for the risk/reward shot.
Cons: I am not a fan of the rubber tee pads, I feel like they get slick with just the slighest amount of moisture and mud/dirt/particles. On many of the holes when it has been raining a day before you should stand and deliver, or risk busting your bottoms.
I enjoy woods golf, and will not complain or view tight fairways as a con.. There were just a few scraggly trees that I may cut down if it were my course, it is good to keep a course tough tho.. Eventually some of the fairways may open up and if it does look for some high calibur tournaments here..
Me and my buddy played first day of April and the inchworms/silkworms(not sure of the species of lepidoptera) were really bad. Like we played singles first round and then doubles the second round and by the time we came back through the main fairways were once agian covered in these larvae
Other Thoughts: Overall I really enjoyed my experience at Leigh Farm. Personally I think some of the other reviewers were to harsh on this place, and their review probably reflected on hitting many trees and becoming frustrating with tight line after tight line. It seems I am running into alot of courses that stack up in between the numbers, I would call this one a 3.75 in its current state. Trying to be optimistic I will vote up and give it a 4
My Score first round +5 course par and I'll take it and run
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 8 Not
Hidden change of pace
Pros: Challenging and well laid out. Two courses in one, with beginner and adv tees.
Cons: Can be confusing first time through, heavily wooded. Little parking.
Other Thoughts: Pay attention to the board at the front as to what configuration the holes are in. The maps show two holes but there are only one set of baskets out there... if you've not played a course that moves baskets around this will confuse you.
0 of 8 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Teaches you to Play Smart Golf
Pros: The Leigh Farm disc golf course is located on City, County, State, and private land. Parts of the course border US Corp of Engineer property and other fairways border Historical property. Because of the many issues with putting a course in this park, the design had to be carefully planned with regards to tree removal, erosion, and the protected wildlife. The result is a very technical and challenging course.
Leigh Farm is not for the technically challenged player. This course will demand an ability to throw any and all types of shots. You cannot simply throw as far as you want to from the tee. Stay in control of your discs and manage the fairway.
My suggestion to new visitors to the Farm is that you just walk the course on your first trip and take some notes. Document the following: Where are the landing zones?, How much risk is involved with getting to the landing areas? , and Is it worth trying to throw further?
Fact 1- Leigh Farm was designed so that the long tees would be played for the long baskets and the short tees for the short baskets.
Fact 2- There are many elevated baskets and one is in the side of a manmade hill.
Fact3- Leigh Farm has blind shots.
Remember this quote- A fairway is only a blind-shot the first time you play it. Play Leigh Farm at least twice and you will see what I mean. You might even improve your game.
Notes for the Advanced Course- white tee pads to short baskets. Par 61 (my best score on this layout is 54, my average is around 59, and my worst round is 65. I have played the different layouts at Leigh Farm around 200 times)
Hole 1- Good hole for learning to throw low. Remember that hyzer shots are easier to keep low and to control. I would just throw a putter.
Hole 2- Safest shot is to throw 225 to 250 to the area near the rec 4 tee pad. Use your putter for an approach shot through the gauntlet of trees for your birdie on this Par4 hole. Green rolls to the left.
Hole 3-Three narrow fairways. Take your pick for this 250 foot par 3. Drop off behind basket.
Hole 4- Keep your wits for this tough par 5. Unless you are lefty or can throw a sidearm with control for 250 feet, I would throw a putter 150 to 200 feet to play it safe. You can make up some distance on your second shot. Do not try to overthrow this 600 foot hole.
Hole 5- Open par 4 hole that allows you to throw 400 plus feet off of the tee but remember that your second shot may be easier if you can keep your first one in the road.
Hole 6- Keep your drive to the right on this par 4 to a good landing zone at 250 feet. Now you will need to throw your Roc or putter to a basket that sits on top of a little mound.
Hole 7- Open ace run. You may want to check the wind conditions at the top of the big mound. Often there is a head wind. If so then I recommend throwing a TL. Major drop offs on left and right of basket.
Hole 8- Another ace run. Wind is always a factor and always different. This is a great hole for practicing your shots in the wind. There are two baskets on this hole with the long shot being to a pyramid.
Hole 9- Wide open or is it. Don't just throw it as far as you can. Think about where you want to be for your next shot. Where are my strengths? Do I want to be on the left, right, or middle? Elevated basket.
Hole 10- Short technical hole so take your time and get a birdie. If you go for the ace then there is a good chance that your disc will fly far past the basket. The alternative is to go for the area just in front of the basket. I said it earlier but don't forget the drop off behind basket.
Hole 11. Par 4 L-shot. Placement is more important on this hole than any of the others. Right-handed sidearm or lefty is easier so learn these throws or throw a putter to the top of the hill.
Hole 12. Challenges Hole 1 for toughest par 3's on course. This one is a bit easier because you do not have a low ceiling to work with off the tee. Drop off behind basket.
Hole 13. Right handed player has a chance to work on that 300 foot sidearm shot. There is plenty of room to just throw a straight shot for a 20 to 25 foot putt.
Hole 14. Trees break this hole into two fairway options. Watch out for the creek/ditch that runs in front and behind the basket.
Hole 15. Throw a tight short-shot for 200 feet and you will be rewarded with a chance to make a challenging putt to a basket on top of mound. I suggest leaving your drive on the left side of the mound because it is easier to putt from there.
Hole 16. Teaches players how to get height on your drive. Another elevated basket.
Hole 17. There are two fairways but the left one is the best one for the short basket. (Fairway on the right is an old historic road used in the 1700's by Cornwallis) Statistics show that this hole is the easiest par 4 on the course. I recommend walking down the fairway to test the wind. If you are with someone just pretend that you cannot remember where the basket is located.
Hole 18. Keep your shot low because there are some unfriendly trees. You can still make your birdie with a bad kick if your drive is low. A low skip shot is good.
The farm house and the property around is on the National Register of Historic Places. Enjoy the fact that you can play another challenging disc golf course while touring an historic piece of property.
Cons: The blind trees on Hole 18 are too close together thus making it more of a guess and crapshoot from the tee. I believe that a couple of smaller trees should be removed.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 10 Not
Weak Sauce!! In need of chainsaws.
Pros: Excellent private setting in a beautiful wooded park. The course has tons of land available including some interesting terrain featuring a hardwood forest, several big hills, a few streams and a good mix of open and wooded area. Ambitious design with Par 4's and Par 5's. Course is made to accommodate a wide range of skill levels as they have attempted the dual pads / dual baskets. The course plays near a couple of historic barns on #17/#18, which kept me going the last few holes when I was ready to quit.
Cons: This course has some serious design flaws, namely invalid fairways and a high confusion factor.
Fairway trees make invalid fairways. There are LOTS of fairway trees on nearly every hole. Too much "throw and hope" where a good shot gets treed and a bad shot gets rewarded. You need luck to score here, not skill. It literally needs hundreds of trees removed to create real fairways. In addition to the fairway trees, many of the fairways are strange/awkward angles, not conducive to a discs possible flight path. Nearly every hole is blind, like so blind you still can't see the basket from halfway down the fairway.
I think the dual pads and tees can work, but in this instance they were poorly executed and confusing as hell. I attempted to play the longest pads and longest pins (not recommended at this course, the short ones seemed better designed). The holes are only signed at the short pads (need another set of signs if having two tees) ... and it seemed like the baskets weren't all there and that one of the holes played to the same baskets. In several instances I could not even find the long basket.
Lastly and maybe most importantly, due to all of the above, the course is not at all fun to play. There is no risk/reward and the entire time you are playing you think about how good this course could/should be ... and that it is not in its current state. I wanted to quit halfway through but too far from my car, and only played the last two holes that are near the parking lot to see the old barns.
Other Thoughts: I was advised this was a "polarizing course" before playing and I'm certainly polarized in my view of it. I'm rating this a 2.5 and could go lower ... but it could easily become a 4.
It's like that brilliant guy you went to high school with that got into drugs, failed out of school and now works at McDonalds. You know he's got a ton of potential, but it's frustratingly not realized right now.
This course has some serious potential with the terrain and amount of land available, and it's awesome to see a longer course with Par 4's and 5's. Beginners or non-advanced level players might enjoy this more as it seemed like the shorter pads were designed better, speaking from the experience of playing the last 6 holes from the shorter pads. The long pads have a few good holes, but were mostly invalid shots and not enjoyable at all.
This reminds me of a course near home (JP Moseley in Atlanta) that was initially terrible and has recently been entirely redesigned to be one of the best courses in the area.
This place needs a redesign or needs a bunch of guys with chainsaws to cut out valid fairways from the existing layout. I was the only car in the parking lot @ 3pm on a Friday ... and was still the only car when I left. There's a reason the parking lot is empty ...
6 of 16 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
On the farm
Pros: It's a very technical course that has a great mix of holes. There's basically two completely different courses interweaved on the grounds (rec and advanced) and the advanced course has two levels which are both challenging.
Layout - The advanced courses force you to use a lot of different shots. You'll need to not only hit tight gaps throughout but place your disc in a good position as well on the longer wooded holes.
There's a great mix of long/short holes as well as wooded/open holes. One thing I always like about the layout of a course is a mixture of hole types and this place has it all covered.
There's elevation changes that weave in and out of the woods. Some big throws off of mounds and one up on to a mound. The course uses elevation exceptionally well, especially with the basket locations. More than a few are perched on a hill or drop off.
Tons of risk/reward placement shots on this course, especially on the dog legs. If you try to get ahead of yourself you can get punished. The basket locations can be tricky to, go for a long putt and you can be looking at 3 putting easily.
Multiple routes and the ability to try different shots is another huge plus here. Some times the more direct route is much tighter and makes you think twice.
Two basket locations on the advanced course holes, one short / one long, that switches based on the season.
Atmosphere - The parts where you get in to the woods are nice and secluded. The course is built on an old farm and that comes out in a few places. The two mound holes look great when you're throwing off of them, a highlight of the course.
The landscaping has improved vastly since it has opened. A lot of the trash has been cleaned up and some tall grass areas have been chopped down.
The course is never crowded. That's a huge plus considering how busy UNC is right down the road.
Equipment - There's signs up now which are great, they show hole info and a great map. Following the course has become much easier now that it got some wear on it along with next tee markers. There's a map and info at #1.
The tee pads are large and the baskets are in great shape.
****The Rec course is mostly pitch and putt but is good for less experience players and kids. In my opinion it's better than most beginner style courses because it's not a bunch of baskets in a field, you still get to go out and throw through the woods.
Cons: Layout - The Rec and Adv courses being interweaved causes problems because in a few places the Rec baskets are halfway up the Adv fairways. It's not usually a problem of people from the other course being in the way but has obviously been a problem with people getting confused.
The fairway for #5 is partly on a gravel road, the road comes in to play on #3 as well but my main gripe with #3 is the B pin position, it's just ridiculous.
#18 isn't the best finishing hole in the world, kind of forced in at the end. A lot of people rectify that by parking next to the buildings at the entrance and starting on #5, which lets you finish on the monster #4.
There's a couple of places where I wish the immediate rough was cleaned up a bit more, you can lose a disc easy out here if you land in the wrong spot.
Atmosphere - There is some glass and trash on some fairways from before the course was built, it's getting a lot better though. The course is still a bit rough around the edges but again, it's getting better.
An office building and parking lot comes in to view on a few holes and you hear traffic from the interstate on a couple.
Eqiupment - There's not many benches and no trashcans on the course.
Other Thoughts: This is one of the most underrated courses in the area because so many people got confused on their first trips. So if possible play with a guide your first time. If you do go alone remember, Blue band baskets = Rec course, Yellow band baskets = Adv course.
Personally I really like this course, it's very rough around the edges but it's a technically sound course that will challenge you.
Update (12/12) I still like this course, way more than most people in the area. However after more than a year since my original review there are still some areas where I think fairways need to be cleared out more (especially a few landing zones) and there is a lot of small vegetation and vines that imo create un-fairways and should be trimmed.
Other than that I still believe the course has come a long way and you can tell some hard work has gone in to it to for better. Another possible improvement would be to possibly make it less confusing for new/out of town players who so often get lost and frustrated. Not sure how to do it, perhaps make a better map or more signs on the course.
UPDATE (2/15) : They switched around the layout some due to construction and long story short they screwed it up even more than it used to be.
On top of that it's now even twice as confusing because of the flow and due to the fact some of the old tee signs are sitting next to new holes that only match in #, all the info is wrong.
On top of that this course is in worst shape than it used to be, some of the pads are awful.
On top of that they took out my favorite hole.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Course keeps getting better
Pros: The New Tee signs for the advanced course are a great improvement. It is clear that someone is showing this course some LOVE. The first couple times I played this course it was confusing and hard to follow but over the last year it has really come into shape. The advanced course offers a real challenge to any disc golfer regardless of experience. The course plays through the forest on most holes demanding distance and accuracy on most holes. It is awesome to have some real par 5 holes in the triangle.
This course is actually 2 courses in one location, so if it is your first time out pay attention to the map that is posted at the first hole and remember the tee signs mark the advanced course and include a nice mapping of the hole. There are usually locals playing the course and you can ask them for directions if you get confused (although this course is never crowded - yet).
Cons: It is a new course and as indicated below, parts of this area used to be a dump. There are some areas of the course where broken glass and debris can be found on the fairway - be careful not to cut your hand when picking up discs.
Other Thoughts: This course keeps getting better. I used to play UNC all the time but Leigh Farm is quickly becoming an equally challenging (if not more challenging) option.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 10 Not
Pros: Great technical course! This course offers a great mix of open and tight shots, elevation changes, hole distance, and placement shots. This is really what Disc Golf is about!!!
Multi pin placement, multi tee pads, Pins alternate on a monthly basis.
Cons: Ticks, Ticks, Ticks.
Course can get overgrown during summer months and eats discs if not kept in the fairways.
Can be hard to follow for the first time players, I would suggest contacting a member of the local club DORDA to get a course tour.
Other Thoughts: This is a must play for any disc golfer who thinks they are ready for pro level play!
3 of 13 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Nice singage , for what it is worth.
Cons: Signage didn't match the tees. Muilt tee's on each hole didn't match the sign. Also found the coure very hard to follow. Nothing really when together. This course was not set-up for visits more for the regular players.
Other Thoughts: Should mark the pad better, for each color used. More signs should be used to showing the next tee. Benches would be nice , even if it every other hole.
2 of 11 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Confusing layout, but Great course (plus potential) - UPDATED
Pros: - This has the potential to be the best course in Durham.
- Super convenient to interstate 40, and new paved parking lot has tons of parking (although I would park on the left so you don't catch an errant drive from advanced 16).
- There is a lot of variation. You have the short Rec course - which has two basket positions. Then you can play the advanced course, which has the two positions, and at least half of those holes have Pro tees. I am probably slightly off, but there are probably almost 100 potential hole layouts (half of which you can play in one set-up when you hit the 3 tees). The A & B pin positions actually make the holes quite different most of the time.
- There are some unique pin positions - on little bluffs, elevated baskets (RIP #7 on the pyramid -it is now a "death putt" from the top of the hill), letting the streams make island greens, etc.
- There are benches at most tees.
- When playing the long set-up (and/or the pro pads) this has some of the longest golf in the triangles.
- This is a tight challenging course. You could play a putter only round on the recs (as an advanced player), and you will be forced to hit your lines. Not necessarily a beginner course.
Cons: - The course is confusing. The actual map (on this site) is for Rec and is accurate. You will throw to both yellow and blue bands. The sketched map was accurate (will see what they are going to do with the construction). You will only throw to yellow bands. The signs are on the advanced pads and are accurate. With the construction, several holes have been modified, and those signs are not up (they are laying on the ground). I am assuming that once construction is finished, the signs will be updated.
- It's still early spring, so the rough hasn't started to grow, but the rough can be really rough. Hopefully, with the re-opening after the two year hiatus, traffic will beat it back a little. I am a little concerned though.
- There is still a lot of trash (I sort of can't believe that they do kids camps here - is your tetanus shot up to date?).
- I'm concerned that some of the improvements to the Farm will bring more summer camp traffic. On 12, I would have decapitated someone sitting in the circle of benches. Some of the hiking trails are fairways.
- It's a little soft after precipitation.
Other Thoughts: OK - so I was super pumped to get back out and play this course as it was closed for almost two years. My game has changed and improved, and I wanted to see what this course really was like (as I was a novice when I wrote the original review).
Verdict - there are some changes, but I still think this course has some of the best DG in the Triangle.
I actually lowered my rating to 3.5. With the re-layout I'm confused a little bit, some of the teepads aren't permanent and I'm not sure if there will be two pin positions - or how they will layout without crossing fairways. I'm assuming it will be awesome, then my rating goes back up to 4 (or 4.5). I'm confused about the basket on 5 - it's a blue band - do I play it in rec? I still see the old "short" pin at ~700'.
I see issues with foot traffic from the summer camps - don't know if holes will be modified to work around. I'm sure that with no disc golf, the campers now have squatting rights.
With the changes to hole layouts (advanced) - the new 6 becomes harder, as the basket isn't on the top of the hill - it's right on the edge. I like 7s placement, but it is close to potential camp activities and the basket for 10. I'm sad about 16 - it used to be a tunnel, with a sharp turn at the end - now if you don't hyzer, you're going to catch a windshield (and they cleared a ton of trees).
- My favorite holes are 14 (great tunnel with some strategically placed trees you have to snake to an "island" green across a creek), 15 (short hole, tight tunnel to elevated pin) and 17 (pin position B plays over/around a historic log cabin).
I know this isn't a Charlotte course, but, to me, it's the closest thing to it in the Triangle. I hope they complete the work and are able to coexist with the camps.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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