14 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: -DeLaveaga. Where to start. This magnificent property has to be the St. Andrews of disc golf, being home to one of the oldest courses and one of the oldest tournaments in the game. I would venture to say that this has to be the most well-known course in the sport of disc golf.
-The Scenery. DeLaveaga Park, at first glance, seems better suited for a nature hike than for a disc golf course. The thick woods, steep canyons, and panoramic views are incredible but it must have taken a lot of creativity and imagination to envision and then carry out the construction of a disc golf course on this property. Enter Tom Schot.
-I'm not too well-versed regarding the history of DeLaveaga and which holes remain from Schot's original routing, but nevertheless the present routing is world-class. Every single hole has a unique character. Particularly well known holes include Gravity, The Refrigerator Hole, I-5, and of course the Top of the World. It's the sign of a fantastic course when multiple of its holes are imitated by designers at dozens of other courses.
-It's needless to describe any hole in detail as Youtube can take care of that, but my personal favorites were #3, #6, #8, #11, #12, #13, #16, #17, #19, #25, and #27. Wow. That's a lot.
-The incredible variety of holes requires a player to use their entire arsenal of shots. It's not a wide open course that only requires a few overstable discs. It's also not a heavily wooded course that only requires your straightest fliers. DeLaveaga includes both of these types as well as a handful of "Type Z" one-of-a-kind holes that will leave you drawing a blank deciding what is the most effective shot. These types of holes are what elevate courses from excellent to outstanding.
-Putting is a challenge. Most greens are ridden with obstacles: large trees, downed logs, roots, low hanging tree branches, and of course, steep canyons that are more than willing to make you exclaim "I just got DeLa'd!" Being comfortable manipulating your style of putt is a certain stroke-saver.
-The course strikes an unmatched balance between challenge and forgiveness. A score of Even par with all long baskets is traditionally rated 995-1000 in the Masters Cup. It's the only par three course on the professional tour, but remains a player favorite. Ricky Wysocki, Matt Bell, Sarah Hokom, and Madison Walker are among the touring professionals that have named DeLa their favorite course. In addition, the fact that it is a par three course makes it a favorite of players all over the skill spectrum. Even a novice player can have fun making a few pars in a row.
-Large concrete tees, Mach X baskets, excellent tee signs, and super size benches adjacent to every tee box are just a token of evidence of the hours and hours of hard work put into this course by the local community. A small pro shop with discs for sale is on-site as well.
Cons: -Chance of lost discs. A slight mis-release or a bad kick off of a tree can easily send you down into a canyon. Holes #8a, #9, #12, #15, and especially #26a pose the greatest risks.
-Poison oak. Stay on the fairway, and you should be A-OK, but send one down a ravine, and, well, best of luck.
-Crossing fairways - Holes #5 & #6 and holes #13 and #16 share fairways. In addition, errant drives from #27 pose a risk for several holes and the parking lot.
-These things can and do make for a miserable round at many courses. However, they add to the charm and experience of DeLaveaga.
Other Thoughts: -This course has lost a lot of trees in the last five years. In fact, a large portion of one of the huge oaks guarding the #15 basket has just fallen (as of Jul 2019). It's nice to see that new trees have been planted in several spots. I don't know how many trees have failed due to environmental factors as opposed to contact from discs, but I'd like to see some of the trees in high-impact areas be protected with wraps or screens.
-Almost every hole has an alternate basket position, which helps ease the wear and tear on parts of the course. While it's a bit disappointing to come to an iconic hole and find the basket in the secondary position, the lines are fun and well thought-out.
-The elevation change is not as extreme as it is made out to be. The only large hill on the course is climbed on #1 - #2, and #25 - #26. The rest of the layout is of only moderate elevation change unless you find yourself at the bottom of a canyon searching for a disc.
-This is an incredible course. Very few courses can boast being on public park property, having land used exclusively for disc golf, and being among the world's finest. DeLaveaga checks all three boxes.
14 of 15 people found this review helpful.
Absolutely Amazing Views and Course!!
11 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Delaveaga in Santa Cruz, California is one of California's best disc golf courses. This course offers amazing views from the iconic top of the world hole. This course is challenging for all players as well as myself.
This course is maintained pretty well but many holes play in hard compacted dirt like Morley Field in San Diego, California. There are quite a lot of fun holes at Dela such as the refrigerator.
Some of the first holes play in the woods.
One of the holes I especially liked is called Gravity. This hole is on the side of a steep hill. They call it gravity because it is the shortest hole on the course and you can float your disc right down to the hole. Tee signs I believe were added quite some time ago but are very nice in many ways because of blind shots and other reasons.
- There is a pro shop in the parking lot near the back side of the course. They sell quite a few discs, bags and Rovic Disc Golf carts.
The Masters Cup is held at this course. They play 24 out of the 27 holes there are at Dela.
- One of my favorite holes is the refrigerator. Apparently someone dumped a old fridge down in the ravine and the name kind of stuck. If you go to the course they give you the full description of why they called it that.
- They do not water this course so you will get enormous skips, especially on the top of the world hole.
- The top of the world hole is around a 500 foot down hill shot that has amazing views of Santa Cruz.
There is poison oak now I don't mean that it is bad but man it is there. Just stay away from it and you will be good. Overall the some of the wooded holes are just amazing. Just like in all the videos I have seen of Dela there is nothing like just playing there in the morning. Although it does get crowded this course is definitely worth playing. The Delaveaga Golf course is a nice change and I would like to come up to Santa Cruz again to play it.
Overall this course is spectacular I really wished it was much more close to me. The variety of the shots is amazing. What a Great Pro shop and other spectacular holes. This course is one of my favorite courses by far. I do not live close but I really want to play the other Dela course on the golf course. But that course is much harder and admission is so much more. Delaveaga park is free though.
There are no maps to this course. I thought it was really fun to walk in-between the holes just because you don't see that on the videos on youtube. When I played the refrigerator hole the pin was in a different spot. Just about every hole has a second pin location. At the fridge the hole was off to the side which was a little annoying. I was hoping to go over the trees like you would see on youtube.
Hole 25's top basket has been removed this hole plays as a short par 3. I believe due to mud slides and stuff like that they removed it.
Cons: There are not very many cons on this course because of how amazing this course really is.
-One concern is that on the top of the world hole there is a road that runs on the back of the basket. Quite a few cars come threw there which makes it hard if you throw long.
- This course is not a very beginner friendly if you are one. Very steep cliffs and lots of hills make it very easy to loose your disc.
Other Thoughts: Overall the course is very nice and I would definitely want to play it again. This is one of a couple courses in Santa Cruz. One of the other ones was on a campus. I could not access that course.
There are many wooded holes where it is hard to loose your disc which can be nice because previous holes have very steep cliffs.
One thing to know is to go early in the morning because it will get very hot and dry in the afternoon. Dela tends to be kind of open on a few holes.
One of my favortie holes is gravity which I already mentioned. But there is nothing like it. it is the shortest hole on the course and it looks just like it does in the CCDG videos. Just let your disc float down and you are parked. Although this hole is on a steep hill your disc will definitely sit when it hits the hill.
There is also another course there that plays through the golf course. In the Masters Cup they play this course on their final day. Nothing Like playing here for a change this course is spectacular.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
Favorite course of all time
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: It's regarded as one of the best courses in the whole world, and for good reason. Signature hole after signature hole. Park is strictly used for disc golf and nothing else. You'll never forget throwing off the top of the world.
Cons: I can't say I'd recommend this course to a beginner. There are a couple blind shots and scary fairways with canyons so you must be careful not to lose your disc. That said, off the fairway doesn't have a lot of brush so you're usually fine as long as you don't shank one off a cliff. As an intermediate player, the last couple times I went I didn't lose any, so I think that if you are comfortable with your shots you'll be fine. Pay for parking but hey, it's so worth it! Imagine how much a premiere course like this would cost if it was ball golf.
Other Thoughts: My favorite course, ever. The pinnacle of the sport for me. Get ready to test every shot in your arsenal. Uphill, downhill, sidehill, gaps, trees, bombers, technical shots, you name it. Unlike some pro courses, this course offers a lot for your average player who takes the sport semi-seriously. You just need to be extra careful on ~3 holes, the rest won't be an issue, just be mindful of the steep drop-offs. There aren't any 400' water gaps or anything too ridiculous, but still has incredibly challenging holes in their own, very unique way. Would recommend to anyone intermediate skill and above. You'll need a good right turn shot for one of the holes that has a canyon on the left. It's a long course so pack water and snacks and make sure you're physically capable.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Lived up to expectations
2 Helpful / 13 Not
Pros: Great layout and use of terrain
Just the right amount of trees so you don't have to worry about constantly scrambling.
Pro shop on the property with super friendly staff.
Cons: Occasional trash
Other Thoughts: This course is a monster! The hike is worth it though. It lived up to my expectations after watching so many pros play here. I loved the change in elevation on almost every hole which constantly challenges your skills. Good spread of open and wooded holes and wooded holes did not have heavy underbrush which is always nice when you get off the fairway. Definitely loved throwing from the top of the world!! An experience like no other.
2 of 15 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: This course is beyond incredible, coming from Colorado this course was so much fun to play. The course made you hit your lines without feeling like every shot was down a tunnel. It felt fair to where getting dela'd was confusing. The rough was rough and the elevation was fun without being too extreme. Overall everything was incredible and it felt like how a disc golf course should play.
Cons: Nothing to speak of, holes on the hill were closed which was a letdown but the course still played amazingly.
3 of 12 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 7 Not
Worth every minute, perfect course
Pros: Very challenging layouts, iconic holes, amazing views. This place is legendary. I have been wanting to come here since I started playing, about 2 years ago. For our 1 year anniversary we made this one stop on our road trip, and it was well worth the drive. Baskets were all in A position, I ended up -7 which i was very happy with. Course conditions were perfect.
Cons: A little out of the way, somewhat crowded, patrons didn't have the cleanest of language.
Other Thoughts: I am so glad I played this course, and will again if I get the chance. Maybe next time the course will be in a tougher layout.
2 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: What more can be said? An icon. Challenging holes, mixed elevations, striking views, long holes, technical holes, legendary holes.
If it's not on your bucket list, it ought to be.
Cons: Crowded on the weekends. Alternately, if you're a first timer and arrive on a quiet weekday morning, it can be hard to spot some of the baskets from your tee (Such as 2, 7, 12, 14, 15.)
1 of 8 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 3 Not
Home Sweet Home!
Pros: Lots of varied holes and shots.
Not overly punitive for a beginner.
Super affordable (only $2 per car to park)
Sweet views and ocean breeze
Pace of play even when crowded is good
Cons: A couple of holes criss cross each other
#13 should really be a par 4
Other Thoughts: DeLa is the mecca, the original! and the best!
4 of 7 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: -Amazing, iconic course.
-Variety of shots
Cons: Really dusty at times, but really no complaints.
Other Thoughts: Go there and play the course. One of the best courses in the country. It's easy to see why so many pro's grew up in the Santa Cruz area playing DeLa all the time.
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 1 Not
Whole New Respect for Disc Golf!
Pros: I have seen this course played many times on Youtube but actually playing it was humbling. I couldn't believe how much harder the holes were than they looked with the pros playing them. So many of the lines are pretty tight that the pros make look more open as they so easily hit the gaps that are hard to hit if you aren't of their skill level. Just take hole 1, that looks pretty flat online with the pros getting up into the tree line...it takes a pretty long throw to get it "up" there...way harder than it looks.
This course provides a lot of variety to the holes with plenty of length to make birdies hard enough to get and plenty of times you are going to need to shore up your "getting out of trouble shots." I think I had 2-3 birdie looks the whole round and only got one on the "gravity" hole. The kitchen hole played a lot shorter than I thought it would and was easily birdiable.
I really liked that there weren't too many mandos or too many OB lines as the holes had plenty of space between them. The only real overlap/danger was how the top of the world shot (which is spectacular) played over a few fairways and into the parking lot, even to the proshop if you threw too far off course. We were standing in the parking lot and someone skipped one of the parking lot to within one foot of black acing the portable basket the proshop had out at the corner of the parking lot. That would have been an amazing shot if it had gone in!
The elevation was quite a challenge, especially if you aren't use to it. You really have to plan your shot to keep from getting rollaways as best you can. You also had to watch out for poison oak in the rough...main thing is keep it in the fairway as best you can! Hard to manage if you hit a tree but just playing conservative, throwing straight and keeping it on the fairway is a good way to go.
Cons: - The poison oak was a problem
- Blind shots - while these are fun and would be fantastic if you played this course a lot...it got a bit old having to walk a few hundred feet to see the pin on a good number of the holes.
- Top of the world proved a bit dangerous to a few fairways and the parking lot.
- A bit busy but that was a good thing as we had people in front of us to follow.
All of that is VERY minor...still a 5 star, top rated, must play course!
Other Thoughts: Definitely play this course! I cannot say enough good about this course and would love to play it again. This course would only get more fun the more you play it as one would be more familiar with the pin placements and where the drop offs and OB's come into play. Also thankful that the park is spacious with plenty of room to fit in all the holes without posing a danger to other players or park users. Too many courses try to jam holes in too tight...this is NOT the case here. Each hold pretty much stands alone which is not usually the case.
12 of 13 people found this review helpful.
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