Fun, a good challenge, but room for improvement
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has plenty to offer. A sprawling layout takes you through the rolling pine hills and hardwoods and makes great use of throwing over, through, up and down the available terrain. A very fun course layout.
Some challenging tight fairways through the woods, some open shots, and plenty of tough mando shots that really force some interesting lines.
The back 9 gets a bit tougher than the front, and the terrain really comes in to play. A throw over a gulley, a tough uphill shot right off the tee, and a few throws downhill with some fast greens to boot. There are no challenging distances really, but the tight fairways, tempting basket locations and uphill/downhill shots can really add strokes to your score here.
Cons: As much as I like this course, it does leave something to be desired.
The tee pads are pavers. Although it could be worse, there are still a few gripes here. They aren't quite long enough for a big run up, and after rain they can certainly be slick. Hole #9's pad was underwater at the time I played. Bummer
Some of the old tee signs are still in tact, and are actually pretty neat. Old wood planks on the ground with some paint and engraving add to the charm of the course, but...there are several that aren't in great shape anymore, and don't do any good.
Navigation. Although most of the next tee pads are in close proximity to the prior basket, the tee pads that aren't don't have any directional help. I would recommend playing with a guide, or being patient in finding the next tee pad in a few holes.
The forced difficulty on some holes from the use of mandos is a bit cheesy. Some U-turn holes (#3) and awkward J shape holes can be annoying.
Other Thoughts: I really did enjoy playing this course. It is a fun layout through the woods that isn't overly difficult. The advanced player should breeze through this course, the intermediate should shoot around par, and the beginner will be tested.
If you're in the area, I'd definitely stop by and play a quick round. The close proximity to Rankin Lake can make for a great half day trip from Charlotte.
Would recommend this course, as I think it has a lot to offer, and could be even better with just a bit of work.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
I want to play it again
Pros: I played this in a tournament for the first time, so I was playing a bit tight. I can't wait to play this one for fun with some friends. It has a great variety of shots with some tough lines to hit. Mostly wooded with a few open shots to hit. The regulars all seemed nice and helpful with the layout. There wasn't any water to worry about. Good elevation change and some really cool pin placement.
Cons: As with most courses, signage could be better with a map and score card. Probably best to follow people who have played this course before.
Other Thoughts: I want to play this one again for sure
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Bradley Center has a lot of character that you don't always find on a disc golf course. It's really not your typical '18-hole course in a public park' there are lots of little things that give this course personality like the steps up to 9's basket, the beautiful, unique tee signs consisting of wooden slats on concrete blocks, and the tee pads constructed from large pavers some which contain the hole number made into the tee pad. But, the real beauty here is in the line shaping required on so many holes. This is not a course where you can get away with missing your gap. You have to have pinpoint accurate shots that put you in perfect position to approach the pin or the next turn. There is also a heavy dose of elevation change (especially on the back 9) which brings a whole other element into play.
Navigation here is a breeze, even for a first timer and the design is a figure-8 with the center by the parking lot and community center.
Cons: Bradley has a strange obsession with J-shaped/U-shaped holes more than any course that I've seen. When you have to put a mando right by the tee-pad to prevent people from throwing around the woods (I'm looking at you hole 3) that tells you that maybe you're trying to hard to make a hole difficult and you're creating a line that no one can hit. I also don't know how I feel about the little short cuts built in to reward the lucky individual who happens to drop by the opening and then makes the 3ft wide 50ft long gap.
Other Thoughts: Bradley center is a very solid course in close proximity to Rankin that is really worth your time. This course forces you to navigate wooded fairways with, at times, huge changes in elevation. You end up using every shot in your arsenal in order to score well.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 2 Not
Like what then alright
Pros: Layout - It's a tale of two nines here at Bradley Center. You start off on the front side of the park and the holes weave near/beside the park entrance road up towards the entrance then back to the parking lot.
There's a few good holes on that front nine which gives you mostly shorter wooded holes in what I consider mostly park style; getting off the fairway isn't very punished.
There's a bit of elevation change on the front nine but not a lot. There's also a par 4 thrown in to mix things up which is pretty much two short placement shots.
Then you hit the back 9 and you're finally playing some solid golf. The final 9 weaves through the back of the park which is a much more secluded wooded setting.
The lines are way more interesting and they make you work the disc a bit. Bigger and sudden elevation changes come in to play and give this nine a lot more character than the front.
The par 4's in the back are still shorter placement shots but require more thought and accuracy.
Overall the course is mostly a good place to work on your mid/putter game. I think it finishes really well with the final few holes being some of the best.
Equipment - Tees are paver blocks and decent. The holes are marked by colored 4x4 posts. Baskets seemed in good shape. There's a community center right there at the parking lot with amenities.
Atmosphere - I like the back 9 in terms of atmosphere, it's more secluded and a nice walk through with quirky elevation changes.
Cons: Layout - Most of my problems with the course are with the front 9. First of all it's just ho hum boring and secondly you're playing most of it near the park road.
Some of the fairways were trying to hard and some didn't try hard enough. There's just nothing redeeming about it.
The second 9 was much better but it still lacked any real length or challenge to make the course more balanced.
Equipment - Not a huge fan of paver stone tees. No real tee signs. No other little extras.
Atmosphere - The front 9 is not where I like to disc golf, it's to close to the park road too many times.
Other Thoughts: After the front 9 I would of given this course a 2.5 maybe even a 2. The back 9 saves it and kicks it up to a 3 for me.
I think it's a good course to play if you're local but definitely not something worth going out of your way for. It's just average.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: R-Intermediate
Thanks for the review, appreciate the comments. I think on average the back nine is more liked than the front nine, and a lot of this stems from the land restrictions. Almost all of the available land is in use, and what isn't could not be incorporated without flow issues. So, we were stuck with making the best out of less than optimal land area. In addition to the restrictions on available land, the city further restricted our ability to cut down trees on the front nine. This forced us to make the best out of the "fairways" that were there. There was probably more thought put into the 3 holes (4,5,6) in that area than any other holes on the course. Also, there was a lot of thought put into keeping the road as much out of play as possible, but again with land issues there was no way around it. Even though there are only 3 holes (6,7,9) were the road should be in play, it's 3 more than we like having...We considered adding distance to the holes on the back nine to "balance" the front, but we worried that adding distance would have the opposite effect by unbalancing the skill level (a solid white level course) we were looking to hit. A lot of effort was put into making sure every hole asked no more or no less, skill level wise, than the previous or next hole. I know this doesn't change how you feel about the play of the course but at least (maybe) you understand how and why it got that way. Thanks
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Bradley Center Essentials
Pros: Bradley Center DGC is well worth paying a visit if you have a mind to do so. Not a monster, but enough trees to keep you honest, and some fun elevation change here and there. The tees are marked with numbered 4x4 posts, and pads are small but level, paved with block, and laminated signs posted at each tee with hole map, distance, and +/- elevation change. Occasionally there will be notes posted mid-fairway noting distance to the pin. I liked the converging nines, with hole 1 and hole 10 both next to the practice basket and pavilion. There are many chances to put birdies on the scorecard with several short holes, and several manageable par 4's. Woods are prevalent on most holes, 2, 7, 8, and 9 being the most grassy open park style holes. I birdied the first hole, and had a hard time almost every hole after. 3 was a crazy boomerang dogleg left. Drivers are too much off the tee. I bogeyed 3, 4, and 5, all because of bonking into the numerous trees. After 6, you cross the road, and finish the front nine. I birdied 7, an uphill low line drive shot. 8 and 9 are both nice holes, also reachable with a good drive. Back 9 is all woods. 10 is a birdie hole where I managed to miss the putt. 11 is a good par 4 with a dogleg right. 12 is short, but across a fairly deep ravine with trees. I took a bogey on another birdie hole. 14 and 15 are par 4's, and not too long to make a 3. 16 is a downhill through the trees, and 17 is back uphill shorter and steeper. Missed birdie putts on both. Both can be birdied. 18 is another par 4 that turns hard left with a mando, and is uphill before the turn, downhill after.
Cons: Really no complaints. Tee pads could be larger. Some blind holes. 3 was especially tough to judge. Funky smell next to first hole. Maybe from the small creek along side it. Water was around a few places, but low and very avoidable. There may be one or two places where the course is close to roads, picnic spots or trails.
Other Thoughts: This is a solid course, and a nice compliment to nearby Rankin Lake. I might give a 4 disc rating if the tees were larger and concrete. Really nice design for the park space available. The long holes aren't too long, and if you can stay off the trees and make putts, you might get way under par. I did not. Would definitely play this course again.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Tee-pads have been completed!!!! Challenging course with a unique layout. Easy to navigate, well defined walkways, and well maintained.
Cons: Tee-signs are not always present.
Other Thoughts: GtownDGC is working very hard to further improve this course.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Other Thoughts: Course is set in a multi-use community level park of about 50 acres on rolling piedmont terrain. Park as a whole is nearly completely developed and so future additions or expansions to the course should be limited at best, although there is some decent undeveloped acreage across one of the creek's forks which bisects the property on the east side.
Course, in the main, is sequestered from other park activities and features returning 9's. Equipment is above average as are park amenities, but only when the park is open. Otherwise, come prepared with water and proper footwear. Tees are natural and could be an issue depending on weather conditions. Signage, benches and markers are inconsistent, but every tee is marked well enough; way finding is not an issue. The mandatories, 3 by my count, are all well marked and the course also features several 'distance to the pin' markers that are quite helpful. Course conditions overall are somewhat rough (or maybe I'm just spoiled), consisting mainly of tree litter and work day cullings. Should you visit, bear in mind that the stewards of this course request all refuse be packed out.
In general, the course's atmosphere exemplifies the type of east coast technical course that was standard fare in the early-mid 80's. As I played, I had some strong nostalgic flashbacks to the days of my youth when I was just learning the game. Bradley has that intimate old school scale and feel, but does offer some improvements on that model, not the least of which is more length overall. Back nine is several strokes tougher than the front via length and more extreme elevation changes encountered. One of the issues for courses of this type is the buffering between parallel fairways; as foot traffic increases, these areas tend to get 'wallered out'. Negative effects on play result, especially on crowded days. The designers at Bradley Center DGC seem to have foreseen this problem, and their routing largely minimizes this potential issue.
For the 18, average hole length is about 285'. 4 of the 5 longest holes (all >350') are on the back nine. Scoring chances for most players abound as 9 holes are 250' or less. Regarding balance, Bradley is decidedly clock spin centric from the tee and approach, as half the holes favor this spin's stable shot shape from the tee and nearly as many from the approach. Flat, uphill, downhill, 'cross-the-valley', 'over-the-hump' and cross-hill holes are all represented. Greens are largely neutral with regard to spin receptivity, although there are frequent drop-offs and crenellations that strongly encourage prudence around the greens, especially so on the back nine. Generous scrambling and recovery chances also abound, as it seems one must WANT (via reckless play) to find the really tough penal rough or ob areas. Of note thematically are holes # 6, 9, 10, 12, & 14. All to a certain degree all exhibit what I'd call the 'button-hook' shape. Button-hooks are largely straight holes but terminate in a very sharp turn at or near the green. Faster discs with a high fade rating might take easy advantage of this type of hole.
For such a relatively short, tight course, Bradley has several holes of particular note.
#4 - This hole exhibits superior 'geometry'; it is a very laterally compressed 'S' shape. From the tee, the line of play sits slightly offset from the main line of the fairway which consists of a narrow parallel row of pines. The green is similarly offset from the fairway, but at the opposing angle, quite the brain-buster.
#12 - At 190', a very compelling tough short hole - left to right, slightly downhill over a 15' deep gorge with a very tight low ceiling fairway.
#15 - a very unusual fairway shape for a disc golf hole - the question mark.
#18 - A very tough finishing hole, a right to left dogleg with a mandatory right about 125' out. Although this mandatory protects a ramada from errant shots, I feel this particular contrivance unnecessary, as the layout of hole encourages this natural shot shape from the tee. Moreover, this mandatory nearly eliminates the possibility of the 'heroic' play to finish the round. I suggest an adjustment.
Bradley Center DGC, according to the DGCR page has 7 designers, who are most likely the fellows personally responsible for all the work there. In general, I am not a fan of design by committee, mainly due to the dilution of vision and design unity that normally occurs in this situation. I am edified that, in this case, the designers have transcended this pitfall to arrive at a solid offering. The main issue going forward would be polish and refinement, that I'm sure will come in time.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice and Fun Course
Pros: Good course that's challenging. Good tee placement, with good basket locations. Easy to navigate from hole to hole. I like the stairs they built to help in walking up and down the steep hills and cliffs. Very little brush, making it very easy to find your disc if you have a bad shot. Overall fun to play and will be looking forward to playing it again.
Cons: Needs permanent signs. Tee pads need more work.
Other Thoughts: I see a lot of people saying they need concrete tee pads. I like concrete tee pads, but I like for them to be longer and wider. Natural tee pads give you plenty of room to throw and different looks for when you shoot. I feel like concrete tee pads limit your shot. I think maybe some more work to the natural tee pads would be a great idea. A lot of the tee pads had roots and were slick when muddy.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: R-Intermediate
Thanks for the review! I am glad you liked the course. The up keep of the natural tee pads are a constant battle, and this is why we are raising funds for concrete pads. We also have one of our club members currently working on some very unique permanent tee signs, look for these to start being installed within the next couple weeks.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: A combination of open land, lightly wooded, and heavily wooded play.
Out of bounds woods is light, making it easy to find lost discs.
Practice Putting Basket.
Cons: No maps or signs to designate pars on a majority of the holes.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: Bradley provides really good practice for anyone. Narrow fairways help your improve your game and the baskets are in excellent shape.
Cons: Some drop offs at holes are dangerous. There are no tee pads and some tee markers are nonexistent.
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
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