Austin Bible Ridge
Pros: ABR is a great course- it could be the most challenging in the area for me. It has a medly of technical shots, tight windows and some elevation changes that really challenge your repertoire. You'll probably need both BH+FH shots, I needed both for sure. Errant shots will be brutal on most holes, so eat your breakfast with a side of Scambles (bad joke time, sorry)
The variety for the holes themselves is really good! There area many different shapes on holes- not only with doglegs but in elevation changes. Length-wise this course boasts many shorter holes but a ton of long bombers as well. The technicality is the most divisive factor for this course, as accuracy is ridiculously important if you want to stay competitive here. However, the design is truly exceptional.
It's more than worth a visit if you are a very skilled player or if you're down for a major challenge.
Cons: It's pretty unkempt overall, so even some fairway shots can be hard to find in the tall grass. With elevation comes errant shot hell, so one slip-up and it can be awful trying to find your discs. Also, the signage is somewhat lacking, so I had a really difficult time not only finding the course but also where to start.
Despite calm days, there are a few holes in the hills that somehow are always windy for me. It happens, just be aware.
There are some hikers that walk the trails as well as the course. It isn't frequent enough to sway your opinion of visiting for the first time, but it can get annoying.
Other Thoughts: Bring snacks/water. This is a pretty difficult course not only to play but to navigate. The challenge is well worth it for competitive players
one of Austin's best
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -excellent terrain on a beautiful property with lots of hills, trees, a creek, a pond, etc
-concrete tees with dual tees on most holes (13)
-excellent course design with lots of challenging holes
-makes great use of the natural obstacles
-the rough is punishing for your score but disc retrieval is not too bad
-several picturesque holes and memorable shots
-two wild bonus holes at the top of the hill
Cons: -some places tend to get a little overgrown, even more so from the long tees
-the rocky ground and hills make for dangerous conditions after the rain
-the walk from hole 9 to hole 10 crosses hole 12 which is a blind, downhill bomb so watch your head
-hole 13 must have some kind of spring underground nearby, it's been wet every time i've played
-the pars are a bit generous for the short tees
-course map is now missing from the kiosk
-definitely not a beginner-friendly course, expect to struggle if you can't throw at least 200' with high accuracy
Other Thoughts: Austin Ridge Bible Church has matured into a great course. This almost entirely wooded track is exactly what you would expect from a John Houck design and the course is getting to be pretty well worn so the lines are fair and the trails are mostly pretty easy to follow. In classic Houck fashion there are tight lines and many holes that require accurate placement off the tee to set up the following shot, plus a plinko hole or two (this course has two, 7 & 15).
The course makes great use of the natural features of this gorgeous hill country terrain. There are small ravines and a creek in the area around hole 1-3 & 6-7, the middle holes 8-12 plus the bonus holes play across a scrubby wooded hillside, the backside features some longer fairways, and the final two holes make use of a small pond. Some of my favorite spots are hole 3 with its picture perfect green next to the creek, hole 17 the green nestled next to the pond, the short but demanding uphill hole 11, and the downhill bomb on hole 12.
The holes are challenging and require accuracy and a good game plan. There are 8 par 4 holes (9 if you count the bonus holes) and each of them requires a well-placed shot off the tee to have a look at a birdie. An eagle doesn't seem likely on any of them either. The short tees have the same par as the long tees but at least half of the par 4 holes should probably be par 3 on the shorts.
I really like this course; it is easily one of my favorites in Austin. It seems like a lot of the early reviews don't reflect the current condition of the course. The tees and signs are great and the lines are fair but tight. It is typical Houck in that regard so if you live in Texas and have played many Houck courses you know what that means and what to expect, although it is perhaps a little shorter and more wooded than other Houck courses. A must play for serious golfers.
**Like this review? Hate it? Message me and let me know why! I want to make them better!**
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
One of Austin's Best
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: One of the most amazing courses in all of the Austin Metro Area. (4.25 stars)
- The thing I find best about Bible Ridge is the layout, the uniqueness of the holes and the raw beauty. All levels of players will definitely be amazed with this course as every hole and shot will require the players mental focus. Precision, not length, will be at a premium and every shot style and launch angle will have to be perfected for a player to slay this course.
- As for the holes themselves, there are true doglegs, pocket shots, window shots, blind angles, overhead plays, water elements (creeks and ponds) a bunch of par 4s, a gimme hole, and a "I cant make that gap" hole. The course is among the most diverse set of holes I've ever played (60 courses played as of this review) Really the only thing that's missing is an wide open hole and a par 5.
- In addition, there are a lot of elevation changes, probably among the most in all of Texas. Some holes probably have an elevation change of about a 100 feet (#11a 100' up and #11b 100' down). Players that are not fans of elevation, should stay clear of this course.
- There are 3 holes that specifically stand out as just plain amazing. #3 and #11B and #12. Hole #3 is a dog leg left par 4 that starts off pretty straight and mundane. after the drive, the fairway then dives 30 foot down a ridge and to the left. the 2nd shot will have to clear a creek at the bottom of the valley to where a basket lies no more 30 past the creek. Players don't have to worry too much about throwing it far as a cliff beyond will stop most long throws.
- The second standout hole is the unquestioned signature hole of the course. Hole #11B, which many unaware players may skip. After hole #11, players have a choice to continue onto #12 or play #11A. Hole #11A looks extremely daunting as it plays up a 30 degree ridge incline with about 100 foot of rise. This is probably why many players skip it. Players that have the physical ability to handle this climb and the time permitting, should play this hole. After finishing the climb and play of 11A has finished, players will approach the next tee, players will then see gap in trees. As they approach further they no doubt will stop in their tracks and pull out their phone to take a picture. Here lies the vista of the ridge looking out and over the central Texas Hill Country. I unfortunately don't have a large enough vocabulary to truly represent the sheer beauty of this hole. To add the cherry on top, they placed a basket at the bottom of this view. Happy Shooting. I personally rate this hole as Greater Austin's Signature hole. Just overtaking my previous personal favorite hole, #15 at Mary Moore Searight.
- Hole #12 is another great down-hill shot. Which actually reminds me a bit of the before mentioned hole at Searight. Be sure to keep your drive low. Players won't realize it teeing from within the trees, but there is more than likely brisk winds above the tree line. Our group of 6 lost a disk on this hole. Plus we spent significant time trying to find 2 other disks. Although listed at over 400 feet, a mid-ridge disc might be all that's needed. I personally babied a low speed driver over the hole.
Cons: - Perhaps the biggest complaint you will hear about this course is the upkeep and overgrowth. Considering all the undulations and elevation changes along the course, I'm not surprised that they only beat back the overgrowth a few times a year. My group was very fortunate to play when fairways had just been cut. My advice is to play during the winter, like my group did, so all the rough vegetation will be dead. Playing this course in the springtime during the late part of the rainy season, is a recipe for disaster.
- Furthermore, the overgrowth was still bad in a bunch of spots during my visit. Our group of 6 probably spent an hour searching with most time spent searching on #12 and #15. Players that are inaccurate throwers or those that prefer to bomb away, will not like this course. Please consider the Met Center or Old Settlers instead.
- The course suffers from some navigation issues. The group of 6 I played with had 2 past players and we still found ourselves lost a few times. I highly suggest printing the map on DGCR. There is suppose to be map out at the course, but I never saw it. In addition, the hole signage is about average for the Austin area.
- The course takes a long to time to play, over 4 hours for our 6 pack. In addition, I feel it is the most body stressing of all the Austin courses. There is no water available on site so please be well equipped with drinks and energy bars.
- Although the course has a few of you typically character items like some seating, holes signage and shaded tees, that's about it. There are no bag holders or practice baskets or trash cans or picnic tables, etc. Players that like to be wine and dined with course pampering items, will find Circle C to be a better fit.
Other Thoughts: Players that find course layout, hole uniqueness or beauty as the most important aspects need to check this place out. Bible Ridge will deliver these aspects like no other disc golf course in Austin. Players looking for a laid back round should check out Zilker Park instead. Beginning players be warned, this course will eat you alive.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Great Technical Course
7 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: This is a short, technical course that rewards precision over distance. Built in the Texas Hill Country through thick "cedar" trees, the fairways are tight and the rough is punishing.
Two tee positions on most holes, and the ability to choose the shorter tee was very welcome. The short tees are plenty challenging, with the long tees bordering on "too" challenging for this 850 rated DG'er!
Half of the holes from the short tees are 250' or less. This would usually indicate a "Pitch and Putt" course, but not this time. These little holes are tight and require that you shape your drive well.
There are five 400'+ holes, and all but one are par 4's. These require a careful drive to a landing area, with a second accurate approach to the pin. Miss either of the shots and you're scrambling for bogie.
Concrete tees and excellent tee signs, along with a few benches and trash cans offer all that you can ask for in a course. Porta Potties near the first tee are welcome.
Cons: Navigation was a little tricky, as there are numerous trails winding through the area. Some lead to the next tee, others do not. Make sure to look at the "next tee" arrow on the tee signs and carry a copy of the map.
The terrain is rough and rocky. This is not a course for base plastic discs, and even your premium discs will get nicked and scuffed.
If you love bombing drives over open ground, this is not the course for you.
Other Thoughts: I think it is remarkable that a church has incorporated this excellent disc golf course into their property and opened it up to the general public. I hope that we will respect the wishes of the church by not littering, watching our language, etc.
7 of 10 people found this review helpful.
One of Austin's best
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Good teesigns
Concrete teepads on all holes.
Two teepads on most holes.
Good variety of shots required.
Good variety of hole shapes and lengths.
Pretty isolated, nice scenery.
Houck design, meaning clearly defined lines and landing zones on all holes, even if they are hard to hit sometimes.
Benches and trashcans on some holes (~1/3 or 1/4)
Creek in play on 4 or 5 holes makes a fun challenge with little chance of losing a disc.
Pond throwover on 18, the long tee is a good challenge and the short tee is reachable for most players. Also, easy to bail out to the right if you don't want to risk the water at all.
Good elevation changes, especially for Texas.
Cons: No water (for drinking)
Limited restroom facilities.
Difficult terrain, rocky and uneven.
Difficult to navigate the first few times.
Discs can be surprisingly difficult to find in the "cedar forest."
Bonus holes 11A and 11B are both blind landings, I don't play either by myself (see above con).
Discs lost in the pond on 17 or 18 are usually difficult to retrieve due to cattails.
Could use more benches and trashcans.
No long open holes (not really a con for me, but I know some people love to bomb).
Other Thoughts: This is generally agreed to be one of the top 3 or 4 courses in the Austin area, and is many people's #1. The level of play is not necessarily too hard for beginners, but due to the lack of water and the difficult terrain this is a course that one needs to be prepared for, whether beginner or pro. Navigation can be a bit tough, so it would certainly help to have a map or guide the first few times. The Houck design means it is often tough but fair. Short and long teepads let you choose the level of challenge, although I have been told the course was "meant to be played" from the longs, and the longs are certainly more epic shots or more strategic shots on many holes.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 8 Not
Pros: WAY BETTER THAN CIRCLE C
This course is amazing. Great elevation changes with a great mix of long and shorts and up and down shots. This course will challenge every phase of your game. Recent work has been put into this course and is in amazing condition
Cons: Not for beginners but thats what I love about this course
Other Thoughts: This course should be rated better than it is
4 of 12 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This course has great holes. It is very challenging with technical shots. It has great variety with its long and short tees. It is a very scenic layout, and it is fairly easy to find you way around. It isn't that busy so you will not get backed up on it. It is one of the best courses in Austin. I think that it is one of the most underrated courses in Austin
Cons: -No restrooms
-No water facilities
Other Thoughts: This course should be up there with some of the best courses in Austin. Lets get it there!
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Challenge Accepted - This Course Will Provide You With It
Pros: - tight tunnels
- challenging lines
- changing elevation
- accuracy/consistency is rewarded
- beautiful layout and serene setting
- Hole 11A/11B provides great rewards with scenic views
Cons: - limited restroom facilities at location
- no water outlets on site
- people leave their trash (Pack In/Pack Out)
- better signage to direct from holes 11B towards hole 13+ across the road (follow the paths downhill)
- Basket 11B markings (tall pole no longer visible near basket)
- do not play this course alone unless you have played it before (you can get lost or it simply takes a long time to find your discs in the rough)
Other Thoughts: This is one of the original and challenging John Houck designs, so if you are expecting a "casual" round, you should honestly look elsewhere.
The "Backyard" as it is known is a GREAT course for almost all levels of players; only because I think beginners should avoid these challenges unless they are paying a penance for previous disc golf transgressions.
**Most people put "Cons" noting the long course, the difficulty level, the rocky ground, etc. To me that is not a "Con" it is a "Pro" so that you will know what to expect. After you play here, you will learn what level of disc golf you enjoy most and what you need to improve on or sustain in your DG game.**
The course is challenging with tight fairways, significant elevation changes, rocky walks, uneven ground, and water/OB/rough locations that can sometimes be unforgivable.
Al holes offer there own unique challenges to individual throwers.
Hole 11A/11B are always a challenge since you are throwing up/down a sharp angle.
Hole 17/18 have challenging OB's with the water
Disc golf is not always about the casual round and if you want to strengthen your game while enjoying the serenity of the Austin outdoors, come here and give it a try.
Notes: Bring lots of water and energy snacks because the course is long. RESPECT the area and the course since the church graciously allows players on their property (this is PRIVATE land). Lastly, have fun since this is a true gem of a course that allows you some great disc golf opportunities and fun.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Lots of shot variation. Good amount of right to left, and left to right shots. Most holes have rather tight fairways which is in most circumstances a plus. I really enjoyed the overall play of the course and the hole variety. The structure of the course itself is great. The par is also fair on nearly every hole and risk/reward comes into play constantly when deciding what shots to throw.
Cons: Flow and navigation. Some of the tees for the next hole can be tough to find if you haven't played here before. Took me a lot longer to play the course the first time simply because I would spend a few minutes after most holes looking for the next tee box. If a few more signs were added around the course that would be great. Also, I'm really not a fan of holes 11A, 11B and 12. The elevation on these holes is really extreme with tons of trees, which is a recipe for losing discs.
Other Thoughts: This course is not a beginners course! Much more difficult than other nearby courses such as Zilker. This course asks for many difficult shots and requires solid all around disc golf game in order to post a good round.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Good degree of elevation change and moderately to heavily wooded depending on the hole.
Pro and amateur tees.
Mostly well maintained, only missing a few hole maps.
Cons: Missing a few tee markers/hole maps, but all baskets currently in place.
Other Thoughts: Review based on experience of other Austin courses, don't know how those compare to other areas of the country.
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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