Another Houck Gem
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Large Concrete tee pads
-Decent signage (see cons)
-Good mix of open / technical, flat / elevation
-Quiet park, plays away from other activities
-Short, only 2 holes over 300'
-#14 over the gully is a gem
Cons: -Signs missing on #16, #17, Sign for #6 needs re-attached
-Pars a little generous
-Short, only 2 holes over 300'
Other Thoughts: Chautauqua City Parks hosts a very good DGC on the east edge of Fairfield, IA. Re-designed in 2010, the course utilizes the SW half of the park that includes walking trails, shelters, playgrounds, and is home to the local parks department. The course does a good job of working around most of it with the road in play on #4, #5 and #8. #5 being the only one you throw over the road. Some good elevation as well as many old growth trees make you work for some of the lines. A few guarded baskets (#3, #7 come to mind) and a steep uphill on #9. The gem of the course is #14. Short (at 198'), but over a gully with a fairly tight window and a nice pedestrian bridge. Pars are generous, although some appear to play the course as all par 3s. This will boost confidence in the novice or noodle arms. At just over 4500', it's a little on the short side, but I think that opens it up to more skill levels. Advanced players will find it a little pedestrian. Replacing the 2 missing signs and fixing #6 would help. Alternate basket placements would also raise the rating for me. I have enjoyed my rounds very much here and would play again if in the area.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
A dynamic course, in a wooded old city park.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has something for everyone, making it my all time favorite. I have some great memories from playing this course over the years.
You can do a quick round here as it doesn't have the super long holes of "modern" courses. It's easy enough that new players will still leave smiling, but very dynamic and challenging for experienced players. Hole 14 through the wooded gully is the greatest.
This is an old city park with beautiful old trees, but tree hazards aren't much of a problem. This reminds me of a smaller version of Grandview (Des Moines).
The roughs and the wooded edges can be challenging, as I regularly found abandoned discs here. I only had to buy one disc to get started initially and found the rest to build my collection.
This course never seems crowded and other players were always friendly.
Cons: This is a smaller course, which is great for me. If you're a pro player, you might be bored with the short holes.
Other Thoughts: This beautiful park is unique. If you enjoy disc golf, you need to try it.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Extremely gorgeous, old community park with lots to do. Connected bike trails, playground equipment, shelters, etc. Lots of little tucked away, secluded areas. A surprising amount of elevation for a park like this.
- The Houck-designed maps are fantastic. Kiosk right at #1 with a big map of the whole course and park.
- The original 9 of this course (1,2, 12-18) is definitely old school. I mean, those holes have been around for a long time in the same layout. When the course was expanded, they used what they had, and kept a very similar feel. I'll bet some people don't notice it wasn't all installed at the same time.
- Equipment is in decent shape. Teepads and baskets on the original 9 holes have been well loved, but function just fine. Original 9 baskets are single chain.
- Plenty of shot shaping to be had on this course. Some holes are very open, but in general each hole has 'something.' Lots of L to R holes where a RHBH flick is really useful and really the best play - a good amount for a park course like this, to be honest. (4, 15, 17)
- #9 - You just don't see holes like this very often. It's short...but 20 foot of elevation straight uphill. Don't hit a tree and roll away!
- #12 - Longest hole at 379, slowly downhill on top of a ridge, with plenty of lines to choose from. Biggest risk is all of the timber on either side, particularly as the fairway narrows down to the pin.
- #14 - While short, this is the most memorable hole on the course to me. Drive over a walking bridge spanning a decently deep gully, to a pin that's kind of obscured. Plenty to think about, and not quite the ace run you would expect from a hole this short.
Cons: - Really, the biggest knock on this course is its length. Average hole length of 250 ft, and just 2 over 300 ft. That said, they're not super easy and open short holes - it's just a 1980s-era length course.
- There are a handful of safety concerns. The park gets a fair amount of use from non-disc golfers, and there's a fair amount of potential for issues with benches and picnic tables. Also, the road comes into play in a good handful of places, and is literally in play on #5. Also, some fairway/tee overlap, which is obvious on the map.
- Saw a good handful of drink cans on the course, which looked likely be from one inconsiderate pairing. A 6 pack of tallboys each is impressive though. But, it DID highlight the lack of trash cans on the course. The park has plenty, but none are purposefully near teepads.
- Underbrush along the edges of this course is a bit thick. Some poison ivy. And, from past experience, the edges of this course can eat discs in the fall. Lots of big mature trees here, and all of the leaves get blown or raked to the edges of the woods.
- Obvious recreational pars on this course. Probably correct for beginners, but nothing on this course that isn't a par 3, in reality.
Other Thoughts: - Fun park history note: the trail by basket #8 and the connecting, northernmost road of the park, is actually a very old railroad bed from the 1870s. Makes complete sense once you're looking at it.
- I mentioned the continuity of this course as a pro - the course really does feel like one continuous thought. But, there definitely is room for expansion and added length here, if you wished. Some longer blue tees could be installed on a handful of holes to add length, and there's lots of potential for alternate pins to be tucked away in currently unused timber and gully areas.
- In the end, it's just a fun play. Even if it's easy for more talented players, this is just a fun play, with holes that make you pick a line and execute. Fun factor and approachableness for many skill levels gets a 4.5/5 on this course. True MidwestZest rating = extremely solid 3.5.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
This is an old favorite of mine! I've loved coming here since it was a 9 hole course!
Pros: • Moderately wooded course, that plays along the outer perimeter of Chautauqua Park
• Chautauqua is a very nice and scenic park! It is well maintained and offers a lot of activities
• Kiosk with map at the 1st Tee. Fairly Easy to navigate and the course flows nicely throughout the park
• Great use of varying terrain. Plenty of hills to throw up, down and over.
• Wooded tree line backdrops most of the fairways. (Can be dense)
• Most Fairways offer multiple lines and has a nice balance for RH/LH throwers
• Good Fun factor
• Beginner Friendly, yet still fun and challenging for advanced players
• Most of the holes range between 200-300ft, with a couple ace runs.
• Most of the Fairways have lines that you must weave through trees. Though its shorter, doesn't mean it's less of a challenge
• Nice Walking Trails
• Play Equipment
• Shelter Houses
• Pop Machine between the 1st basket and the 2nd tee
Cons: • A very busy Multi-use park, it's not uncommon to see pedestrians and children on the fairways
• Plays near, but not into, play areas and shelter houses, so be mindful while throwing!
• Two fairways (7&8) criss-cross. (Although it is easy to spot the other tee, just be sure to look first)
• A park road comes into play on 2 holes, it can be hard to see down the hill you are throwing next to
Other Thoughts: Chautauqua has always been a course I've enjoyed playing! I looked forward to a round whenever I would travel home. Now that I am living back in Iowa, I still enjoy driving over and playing. It has a charm and a tranquility with in the park itself. It may not be the most difficult course out there, but there is a reason people still come here to play. It is an old school course that was upgraded to an 18 hole course. You'll see a lot of straight forward shots, but you'll need to be able to finesse your way through the standing trees that fill the fairways. You'll want to stay out of the tree line, due to the dense nature of the brush. There can also be steep ravines just beyond those tree lines as well
Chautauqua is a fun course and has always been among my favorites! It's definitely worth a 30 minute drive from the surrounding areas. It also makes a great addition if you are road tripping across southeastern Iowa. No special footwear is needed here; however it is highly probable that you will be doing some hill climbing and walking in the woods. Your call! Just try to play here at an off-peak time of day. A Saturday afternoon in the summertime will be a busy time.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
One of my favorites of all time
Pros: Very nice tee pads, layout, the baskets are some of the nicest of any course I've played, nice mix of shot types, shady, very fun overall and now that it has expanded to 18 it is one of my favorite courses to play
Cons: Sometimes the signs are missing but that only really matter if you want to know the distance b/c the layout is pretty easy to follow, tends to be a lot of litter and beer cans a long the way despite numerous trash cans
Other Thoughts: I grew up on this course and have probably played it a couple hundred times, still one of my favorites, it wasn't until I got out and played other courses did I realize how well we had it, I continue to play this any chance I get if I'm "back home" for any reason
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Pretty Good Course
Pros: -Nice new signs
-Pretty long concrete tees
-Lots of trees. (makes it a fun course)
-Couple long holes so you can let loose.
Cons: -Most holes are under 275'
-Mainly Right Hand Forehand for throwing. (good for me but not for everyone)
-Couple of holes pretty easy to loose a disc if thrown into the woods.
Other Thoughts: Overall this course is nice. Even though the holes are short they play longer cause of how many trees there are. Plus hole 12 is always a challenge.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
A Forehand's Dream
Pros: This course may be short, but it plays longer than the signs say. The trees seem to laugh at you as you throw down the fairways and some almost seem to jump out in front of you as you throw. The tee signs are beautiful and informative. The teepads are large, even for the shorter holes. The use of elevation makes some of the holes look easy but looks can be deceiving.
Cons: The course is indeed a forehand dominate's dream. I recently played a tournament here and on all but a handful of hole, I threw a forehand short off the tees. Some may like this but for me it is a con. The fairways for 7 and 8 cross each other, which cause some delays and a little confusion on whose discs were whose.
Other Thoughts: This is a nice course that forces you to learn a different throwing style. It may have it's faults, but it is still a fun course to play.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Chautauqua City Park
Pros: * Nice new course sighn at begining of course to show the layout of the course.
* All tees have new sighns (Very Nice)
* some of the Sighs have Bag holders (Nice)
* Concrete tee pads flat and level.
* Course flows nicely end near start.
* Bathrooms and shelter houses are avilibale for use.
* Great use of whole park.
* Multi use park means fun for whole family.
* Great use of elavation
* most holes use trees to make for tougher angels on your shots.
* Not a lot of danger of lost disc( lot of fall folage left could hid a disc)
* Hole 13 listed as a water shot is mainly a large ditch may have water after a rain.
* hole 9 is a great up hill shot.
* 3 Golfers can play the course in under 90 min. not rushing (took us 75min)
Cons: * Course crosses walking and bike paths
* Hole 3 pases a shelter and playground so becarful of non players.
* hole 7 and 8 criss cross wich can cause a delay
Other Thoughts: I realy like the new course it is a fun course, maybe not the most challanging course but plays very fun. It flows very nice with the next tee pad right by the basket you finish at. This is a course that i will defintly return to play at.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
a little R & R
Pros: Multi-use park. Restrooms available during warm months. Picnic tables throughout. Benches around park. Two or three pavilions for cover throughout course. Many playgrounds through the course for the little kids: big plus for me, as I have youngsters. Seemed like on almost every hole of the course, there was a small playground within sight of where I was throwing. Paved trails - roads throughout park for walkers - runners - bikers.
Good sized, level concrete tee pads, nice surface texture on them for a good footing. Elevation was used quite creatively within layout, nothing extreme, but there are some small rolling hills and ravines that make the course interesting. Enough trees on almost every hole, to force you to pick your lines, rather than just gripping and ripping. A few blind pins - a couple just around corner just out of sight, a couple due to trees blocking the view from the tee pad.
Beginner friendly course due to most of the holes being short. Course can be played with only 1 - 4 discs easily (great for newbies just learning or not many discs). This course would be a great course for a One & Done or One Disc Challenge tourney. Fantastic layout to really focus on your technical short game. Not a lot of areas to lose a disc. Course layout was pretty much intuitive and easy to follow, as most tees were located closely to the previous basket (also a con, see below).
Cons: A kiosk would be helpful for those not familiar to the course, or newbies, especially to point them towards hole # 1, which is between the parking lot and the street.
Tee signs not up yet (I know they are coming as the new poles are up). What I didn't pay attention too, is if they are also redoing older signs and their respective locations. My previous review of the 9 hole layout at this course, noted that the signs were in locations that could be hit by your follow through off the tee.
Shorter course (if you're looking to air it out, this isn't where to do it). Only two holes longer than 300ft.
I could see the closeness of the baskets and tee boxes becoming an issue on a busy day, as an errand throw or an overthrow could get close to others on the next tee.
Holes 7 and 8 crisscross each other. Some holes have you throwing across a path so beware of other non-disc golfers. Neither of these are a big deal, but worth noting, but they both have potential to become problems during busy times.
Other Thoughts: A couple of holes to note. I liked the new hole # 4, left to right shot, sloping down from the tee to the basket; too far to the right you're in the ditch next to the road, too far left you're on or across the path. Still like hole # 12 (old # 3), nice long slight downhill hole, with drop offs and rough behind and on each side of the pin and lots of fully grown trees to deal with on the way. I normally can't throw that far, but because this hole is downhill, your disc can really fly far, each time I have played this hole, I have driven it but landed just short and to the left (near edge of rough) just outside of my current putting range.
I really like the new addition to the existing course. I was really impressed with the course the first time I played it with the other layout, and the addition just adds to the fun level. So many holes that are ace-able, I think that's why the course is so fun to play. On a couple holes, I basically just emptied all my putters and mids from my bag, in an attempt to hit chains, but I'm not that good (don't worry, nobody was behind me).
Multiple lines to the hole, maybe this time I throw a hyzer, next it will probably be an anny. Great short course to really focus on control; learning, and developing your short game.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice 9 hole addition!
Pros: A great mix of shots, lots of trees without feeling like you are on the way to grandma's house. The addition takes off after existing hole 2 and returns obviously to the original 3rd hole. It flows very well and plays rather quickly as all the holes are relatively short. It is fairly technical with lots of mature trees throughout and a steep uphill at hole 9. The only confusion (as signs on the new part are not up yet) was going from hole 6 to 7. Cross the road! The closest tee is for 9 (look behind up the hill). The tee just across the road is for 7 and the basket is northeast from it. The rest of the course was pretty easy to navigate. There is some good use of available elevation, but no real mondo downhills or any chance to really let one rip for that matter (hole 12 is it) but overall a great new 18 hole course for SE Iowa. Fun with very little disc loss potential and some fairly challenging holes. Good for beginners, but still fun for more advanced players.
Cons: Lots of leaves in the fall could make it tough to find your disc.
Holes 7 & 8 criss cross, can be quite busy at times causing a bottleneck here.
Needs signs on the new 9 which I'm sure are coming.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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