Armfield . Get Ready To Test Your Mettle .
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Driving into the Civic Center road , and finding the smallish parking lot for Disc Golf , I was already wondering how overrated this course would be ( 3.28 at the time ) . Next to the lot was a flimsy , terrible putting basket . Uh , Oh . I started reading up on the course while parked and decided to take the middle tees on all of the holes ( blue ) . There are 2 other tees to this 18 hole course . White , the shortest and Gold , the longest ( mostly dirt ) but level . The tee pads for the blues at least were the crushed rock , level and smooth . . The baskets are the Lightnings , which are good .There are Next Tee signs on most of the baskets to help navigate . The signage was intriguing . kind of a satellite look with elevation change with it , hole# , par , distance . The blues are the logical choice to throw from , but up on the hill behind you on #1 , you can throw downhill 529' to the basket . The course was pretty well taken care of when I played . Nice bridges , some steps , more than enough elevation here .At the #9 tee pad , there is a shelter with a picnic table and bench to rest and grab a drink . Beautiful mountain and woods views . #2 is a nice hole from an elevated tee that bends a little right to the basket in front of the woods . Plenty of varying shots here . Flat holes like 3 , 4, 5 ( 444' ) and 11 , Big downhill tosses like 1 , 8 , 12 , 15 and 16 . Uphill drives like 6 , 9 and 18 . Even a gully shot or 2 . There is some water in play , being a creek in the front and on your way back . You throw over the creek on 2 and 17 . i think there is challenge galore here , with some fun factor added in .Hole #13 is a uphill S shot to the basket . Hole #15 is a narrow cleared out fairway that descends downward ( 744' blues and 861' golds ) eventually opening up to the basket placed to the right . The elevated tee box on it was nicely done . Some of my favorite holes , besides #2 were #7 , a downhill putter run of a cliff ( 150' straight down )through a narrow section of trees , #8 a station to station tight fairway 330' dogleg right to an opening green , #9 a uphill right to left shot between trees , to the basket sitting next to the side of the hill , #11 letting you open up a drive from the woods . and 17 tightening fairway . crossing the creek . #18 is a great finishing hole ascending uphill into a tightening fairway . Signature Hole : I liked #2 and #9 for different reasons . This course is not a fast play . It took me at least an hour and 25 minutes to play . It might take close to 3 hours ( counting looking for errant drives ) for a foursome .
Cons: With the good also come the bad .
#1 Safety . the holes on 3 & 4 , maybe out on 7 might catch you with trail walkers or joggers . I never saw any , but the 3-4 fairways are smack in the middle of it . Also , several blind shot holes or spots where a disc may have went into the rough might catch a player or walker by surprise . Be aware before you throw.
#2 the Rough The rough can be really terrible in spots . You can get in a lot of trouble with a drive , even if it's not too of course . #8 has station to station approaches with a tight heavy roughed fairway , as does the downhill 800 footer #15 , with heavy rough on both sides . Take a look at the rough on
the right side of 3-4 , with the creek on the left . You can easily get into trouble in over half these holes .
#3 Disc Risk . Can be high . So many shots where errant drives or ricochets can cost you strokes or your favorite midrange . If you have more than a solo , take turns spotting .
#4 Equipment . Signage was only on the Blue tee , and both the white tees and gold were hard to locate a lot of the time ( I liked the painted rocks , though ) , besides them being natural . I do realize that carting cement or gravel up these inclines would take a great effort .
#5 Adverse weather . because of the elevation and the dirt fairways, tee pads on some , this course would be a joke to walk . For example : #7 . How are you going to get down off the cliff if it's slick ?
Other than that , maybe some ho-hum holes like 3-4 and maybe 16 could be reshaped or moved . Also , I just want to mention that the course was trimmed well when I was here , but if it ever loses it's interest , the woods could easily reclaim it . Just Sayin' .
Other Thoughts: This is yet another solid course on the Rt. 52 corridor . Evidently , this course keep improving every year . It gives you much of everything you want . Downhill racers , tight fairways , ridiculous elevation , water , woods , A very good start and finish hole , some distance . There is an abundance of variety for this course . I have to agree with previous reviewers , though . Who is this course catering to ? Other than #1 , playing from the blues makes the best sense , but you might scare away the locals that are constantly looking for their discs and the better players might think the course is not suited for the challenge . That said , there were several groups out on the course when I left .
I was pleasantly surprised by both the strength And the beauty of the course . I graded it between a 3 and a 3.5 , but I had to give it the benefit of the doubt . Course designer Steve Hopkins did a great job here . Thank You , Armfield Civic Center , for making this course a reality and allowing me to play here .
My Recommendation : A little off the highway , but still close to Winston-Salem . This is not a destination course , but a great course to couple with others to make a full day of play . Since the whites are hard to spot , this might not make a good course for the newbies , families or dates ( unless you are dating a Julianna Bower or Val Jenkins ) , but okay for casuals , good for intermediates or course junkies/collectors , and really not bad for the pros to work on game aspects . Take some time out of your drive and Play IT !!!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
It's like the disc golf Gods and Devils collaborated
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -This was it when this course came to life. When this course was designed, that was the day we disc golfers thought would never exist. The disc golf Gods and Devils decided to design a course together and see how it ends up. I played here and I felt like I was in Heaven and then felt like I was in hell. I'll explain in the pros what the Gods did.
-First hole there were angels singing on the gold pad at the gates of disc golf Heaven (a 529' downhill bomb). It was beautiful and they saved my drive from being in the rough. I threw a culverin and it navigated through the woods and somehow went past the basket. The blue pad is marked more clearly but the long pad is a joy to play. It's further up the clear marked by a gold rock. Awesome starter hole.
-Then we get to hole 2 and it's really disc golf Heaven. You have to love this hole! The disc golf Gods are divine making a beautiful downhill midrange toss down a beautiful pasture. My favorite hole here. I threw a slammer and parked this hole, but the view alone makes this hole great, and the fact that you throw off an elevated tee-pad makes it greater. Hole 3 is another cool hole down a trail and the basket is perched slightly in the woods. This hole is harder but it's still a great one.
-You get to play a 150' drop shot off of a bunch of rocks and over rhododendrons. How awesome is that? Some people may think it's a filler to play a hole like that, but it looks awesome and it's very aceable.
-It's a very pretty course. Everywhere you walk here, you enjoy the walk through the woods. The drive over was nice too. The mountains in Pilot Mountain may be the most beautiful mountains I've ever seen. They were like giant rocky crystals with mature trees around them.
-Since this place has mountains, this course is hilly. I said that earlier, but this place has some serious elevation changes. Scenery and elevation is what I love. #15 is off a pretty huge hill and continues to decline a little for the rest of the way. #9 was a gem of an uphill backhand shot as well. This hole is a real monster for RHFH or LHBH throwers. This was a compromise for the Gods and Devils (see cons below, there was a LOT of compromising).
-Tee signs with hole info that seems mostly correct. The diagrams are accurate and have you trusting the Gods on where to throw. Know who to trust. I walked some of the fairways to see where to throw and saw that there was no deceit on the diagrams.
-You're mostly in the country here, but there's gas and food nearby.
Cons: -Now lets talk about disc golf hell. Unfortunately, when opposing sides collaborate (if they do) they have to do one thing. Compromise. There was so much of it that it's unreal. I have no idea who this course was designed for (I guess they tried to please everybody). You have long bomber par 3s that are 500+ and sub 200' par 3s that are steep downhill. I've never seen that kind of variety when it comes to par 3s. Shape is more important than distance I guess.
-Who knew disc golf Heaven has a pitfall that you fall under to get to hole 4 and are damned to disc golf hell. The gold pad I never found, but from what I saw on the tee sign I had a good feeling and it's a terrible hole. The blue pad is another buzzkill. You throw down a trail that cuts right but you shall not dare go right cause you'd be in the underbelly of disc golf hell. #5 is a long bomb and the long pad is like 530' and it's a par 3? It's brutal enough as a 3 from the blue pad because the rough is hell. #14 is bad too, all around bad and the turn is confusing. There should be devil horns on a few of the baskets here.
-Lots of compromising between the Gods and Devils. There are many dumb holes here where the scenery makes them a little less excruciating. Most of the gold pads are dumb and turn a great hole from the blue pad into a bad one. I started from the golds on hole 1, couldn't find the gold on hole 2, and the gold on 3 is fun, but once you get to hole 4 the golds get terrible. It's like the Gods said to the Devils "Here, go ahead and take over. It's cool. We are compromising right?" Hole 8 is a prime example. Gorgeous hole. Nice green perched on a hill giving a gorgeous view, but the hole is a SEVERE DISAPPOINTMENT UP THE REAR. So much that pepto bismol won't do the trick. It's a 330' dogleg right par 3. Good luck getting a 2 here. The landing zone is like 150' ahead and turns 180' right. Same with #17. Gorgeous hole, but don't see how to get within 20' here from the gold pad. It's a 411' "C shaped" par 3. The blue pad is a little more manageable but I don't think this hole is as good as it can be. At least its pretty.
-Hole 16 is basically hole 7 in hell. The devils were probably jealous of how great of an idea the Gods had and wanted to fight back and make a drop shot that's more irritating. The gold pad is a miserable 183' slight hyzer through a very small gap. The blue pad is 141' and is better off jump putting down the hill going right to left rather than going straight through the wee little gap at the basket. Nice use of the creek but that's it for this hole. Not unfair (I parked it), but gimmicky. I just think this hole would be better if it were lengthened and had a couple less trees.
-This is more of a nitpick. The tee-pads give the elevation changes on every hole and I don't believe many of them. I am a hardcore number person, don't tell me it's weird we all have our perks. Live and let live. There's NO way hole 8 has a 17 foot loss in elevation. This hole goes down a few feet and then back up that few feet. I really doubt that #15's long pin loses 93 feet. It has a major drop, but I don't think that much. Many others that seemed too high. The devil is full of deceit. You look at the sign and expect that great of a change and it's not as much as it says it is.
-Some holes have pads, and others do not. The only tees with pads are the blues. The whites and golds are incredibly hard to find. I couldn't find most of the golds or whites. Course isn't very well marked. Now I do think that some of the golds and whites are not needed and that the blue pads make the hole all it should be, but the gold tee for hole 1 (EPIC hole) I would never have found if the locals didn't tell me where it was. I never saw the white.
Other Thoughts: -The Civic Center starts off incredible and would be perfect if it continued with how it started. There's a lot of good and bad that comes along with it and there are a lot of gimmicks that you see the good and bad in. For instance, 7 and 16 both gimmicks. But 7 is a fun one. #16 is a filler that tries to overcompensate by being so gimmicky. 141' steep downhill through a <5' gap. I love extreme disc golf more than old fashioned frisbee golf. This place is definitely not old fashioned, but some of the extremes are liabilities rather than assets to the course. But the assets are nothing light. They are huge and almost appear to be inflated from a fraud cause on a balance sheet. The first two holes are what every disc golfer loves and dreams to see.
-I would recommend you play the blues since they are more visible, except for hole 1. Play the long on that one too and rip some drivers down that hill and try to reach it. It's over 500, but plays way less. The long pad on #18 was pretty good too.
-This course is definitely aimed for casual play rather than tournament play. If you are serious about your courses, I don't know how you'd feel about this course, I would recommend you play Yadkin County instead. If you like to kick back and play a loose round with friends, I'd give this course a shot. You might like it more than I did.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Big Arm is a hidden gem!
Pros: Great variety of holes. From straight forward ace runs to placement shots to make the best attack on a monster par 5. Great use of elevation. This course makes you play smart or the strokes add up. I love the challenge this course provides while being best to play from late fall through spring.
Cons: Summer play can be disappointing as the fairways get choked up by vegetation. HARD.
Be mindful of hikers who don't always know what we are doing there, as a few holes are beside or share a trail.
Other Thoughts: Some teepads are natural or gravel dust but that doesn't bother me. This is a great course that doesn't get played as much as it deserves.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course has a great mix of open and wooded holes with plenty of elevation to satisfy the discerning woods player, or the mountain course lover. The local club has made many improvements and continue to do so. Be warned, there are some challenging holes and as most North Carolina courses, playing this course can be hazardous when it's very wet. I used a cart and the course was fine for it.
Transitions aren't long and the course has a very good flow. This course was thoroughly enjoyable and I'll play again!
Cons: Tee pads aren't all done yet so if natural isn't your thing , be warned.
That being said, the tees are ample and level. No worries for me.
Other Thoughts: Make the drive, it's beautiful and well worth your time.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Good elevation change,love concrete pads but the stablegrid and granite dust works great there! Alot of varaity on all the holes,almost all the holes are a challenge! Nice tee signs and markers on each basket pointing you to the next!
Cons: Could have better baskets but what they have works! Some of the holes don't drain well but no big deal. Would love to someday see concrete tees!
Other Thoughts: Awesome course that is well worth the drive from anywhere in NC! Every one should come give BIGARM a try!!
0 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This was both a fun and also a fairly challenging course. Had a good mix of distances, elevation changes, and the par 5 on the back 9 was pretty sweet.
Cons: Though the fairways are well cleared, the rough is often tall grass or pretty thick woods so it can be difficult to find your disc after an errant throw.
Other Thoughts: This course reminded me a lot of UNC's course!
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Very scenic and natural course that is a much improved redesign from what I hear. This course is a bit of a mixed bag but overall it's definitely worth a visit.
You can tell they're trying hard. Tee signs are great and navigation isn't a problem is if you study the tee sign a little and behoove the little arrows on the baskets. Hole 1 is flush with amenities: Bag hanger, scorecard holder, bench, nicely maintained tee. After that it gets au naturale really quick.
Outdoorsmen will enjoy rounds here as the course undulates along a variety of terrain and elevation. Up and down along creeks and hills, all the while surrounded by lush vegetation. Nature doesn't suck (at least when it's pretty to look at it doesn't).
The golf is solid and occasionally spectacular. None of the holes suck outright, although a couple are certainly nothing to write home about. The best feature of the design is that elevation is used well and there's a terrific mix of wooded and open, short and long. Downhill holes are always fun and there are plenty. Uphill holes (especially steep and/or long ones) are almost never fun and thankfully you don't run into those much here. Overall the course flows well and intuitively with some minor confusion due to intertwining trails (more on that later) but heed the signs and you're good.
I played the Blue tees as they existed and I'm a sucker for playing tees that exist. They're gravel over rubber hexagon mats and they're easy to find. The flat ones worked great. The Golds and to lesser extent the Whites seemed to be afterthoughts, as if the course was designed around the Blues first, fairly common. The Blues are a good round though and seem to call upon many tools of my bag, sometimes unconventionally so (a flippy midrange for a 744' long hole!? Inconceivable!).
Cons: Biggest determining factor for disc selection? Visibility. The rough is rough. Like "Smokey and the Bandit 3" rough. That's the one where Snowman plays the Bandit b/c Burt Reynolds was like "I'm too good for this movie." Every exit from the fairway turns into an Easter egg hunt with our friends the briers and poison ivy. Then there are those picturesque, serene creeks running in numerous directions; they're always keen on acquiring more plastic.
There are a lot of holes where you really want to let'er rip but feel restrained to thanks to a variety of factors, like the aforementioned jungles of Nam bordering many fairways. Even the Blue tees are more often than not rutted out badly and making footing treacherous. Some tees were completely filled with water (to be fair, we've had A LOT of rain lately). The tees are super wide except they're mostly gravel with the actual rubber mat being much narrower. Can be quite awkward if the tees aren't level.
Huge RHBH bias. I hate those miserable left-handed SOB's like the good Lord intended but this course has to be rough on them. If a hole isn't straight it's a hyzer with the exception of some doglegs (which I don't count as lefty friendly since they're generally just 2 straight holes combined). Hole 13 is probably the lefty friendliest dogleg and a super solid hole. Other than that, hole 4 is basically the only feather a southpaw will have in his cap here.
I'm a big safety guy so here's my obligatory "Oh noes, fairways and walking paths/trails too close to each other" rant. As mentioned in other reviews, there are some sharing of real estate on a handful of holes. Best I can tell, these trails aren't being used much and 99% of the time the frolf and hiking community will coexist peacefully. Would be better to avoid this if possible but I think it's alright.
I'm not a fan of hole 16, it's a crazy short and luck rewarding and easy to throw into a creek. It gets the course's "Filler hole" award. Hole 7 would've but it has cool boulders on the tee! I got a thing for rocks, don't judge.
The baskets are not, how you say, championship caliber. They do function but they are a bit shoddy. The chains are really light (thank God someone added another set, these must've been bounce-out city before) and the tops are usually sitting at rakish angles. Some of the trays look like they've worked over by a heavyweight (maybe the longhorn steer I saw by hole 14 got loose and decided to bang the chains?). They look like crap but I'd vote for them as President before Hillary or Trump; at least I know they work somewhat.
The mobility impaired may want to play elsewhere, especially if there's been rain recently. There are some nice steps cut into the really steep sections but there are plenty more walks where I was sweating an ass busting.
Other Thoughts: Rating explanation: I'm a self-admitted tee snob. This course is a bit rough but it's still oodles of fun, even in an adventure golf kind of way. You can't hate on the variety of fairways (unless you're a lefty) and it sure is purdy up this way. But the tees are still janky and the rough is, you know. It's a reasonable course that can grow easily into the "good" category but 4 disc ratings? C'mon guys.
Still though it's definitely worth a visit. It reminds me of a sort of hybrid of Highland Hills, Rockness and UNC. All of those are fun and this one is too.
Hole 15 is superb (as is the tee, hint, hint). Get over the "must throw a driver on a long hole" mindset and float your flippy slow plastic down that bad boy, it's fun. I like the doglegs; they're pulled off well I think. Hole 8's par might be generous and could be more deserving if the 2nd leg was longer. Hole 9 is neat but gonna take some routine limbing to preserve the gap. 18's not the greatest finishing hole and kind of bottle necks hard at the green but eh.
Beer pairing: Foothills Brewing Co.'s Pilot Mountain Pale Ale. The crisp, hoppy flavor really invigorates the round and keeps you bounding along. Also a great beer to cry into after you've spent considerable time searching in the brush for your disc, ha ha.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
I Wish It Were Closer To Home
Pros: As one of the state's newest courses, I just played this gem in conjunction with playing the nearby oldest course in the state. Most every recently built course I've played raises the thought, at least once along the way, that "This coulda/shoulda been done differently." Such is not the case with BIG ARMfield, which does indeed call for a big arm, if you're playing the Golds, or even the Blues. But the White layout is very conducive to enjoyable, challenging play for recreational and intermediate level discers. If you're careful and thoughtful about disc and shot selection, you should do well, as I feel that I did with a four under round. If you mess up, you might double, or even quadruple bogey, as my playing partner and I did on #4. This course is an eighteen hole joyous journey through fields and forests, offering expansive green grass meadows and well defined fairways through the trees. Par 5 #15, running along a wide utility run through the woods, with its beautifully landscaped brick Gold/Blue tee is perhaps the best and most beautiful hole I've ever thrown. If I could putt with any consistency, I would've eagled the hole. Hell, I almost got an albatross with a near perfect fairway drive.
Benches, trash cans, picnic tables, some of which are in little shelters are scattered throughout the course, along with the occasional pet poop station. There's even a little grill located beside one of the back nine holes. Not sure if those little shelters were placed for the course, or for general usage, but we imagined that they would be very appreciated if you were caught in a sudden rain storm.
Overall, I would rate the overall design of Armfield at 4.5, as no design is perfect. I'll spot it an additional half point for the aforementioned amenities, including its very good signage, scenery and maintenance.
Cons: Natural tees marked by white painted rocks. However, we understand that this issue is about to be addressed with a fund raising tournament and by a dedicated, hard working local players' association. Short, downhill #7, where White, Blue and Gold share the same tee spot is probably the most glaring example. Though some previous reviewers cited the proximity to walking trails as a con, we did see some trail walkers, but did not perceive it as a real problem.
For the present state of tee existence, or non-existence, I must subtract a couple of points.
Other Thoughts: Though Armfiled is a bit out of the way in a wild and wonderful wilderness, it is worth the trip and an additional half point. We will be returning.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Empty your bag of shots here!
Pros: This course has a wide variety of holes in which will require players of all skill levels to really test their game. There are easy, normal and long tee positions on most holes with good solid tee boxes built for the normal tee positions and some easy tee positions as well. Word is that eventually the course will have permanent tee pads for all positins on all holes. There are many good voulenteers that have worked hard to improve the quality of the coirse and the overall disc golfing experience that we all love!
There are many elevation changes throughout the course as it was built in low land with beautiful creeks on many holes and plenty of shade trees along the entire course. Every hole has it's own unique challenge and anyone who plays Big Armfield will find a new favorite hole somewhere out there. Every tee has adequate signage to indicate direction distance and elevation. Many holes now have seating for resting between holes. Another great thing about the course is that hole #1 starts at the parking lot and hole
#18 ends merely 300ft away.
Cons: There are walking trails that share space with the course.
Watch out for walkers and loose dogs.
After a good rain you may want to wait a day to let the course dry up as some areas may be soggy and some tee boxes hold water.
Some areas in the rough have thick underbrush and briars.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Very nice layout. Good mix of wooded and open holes
Cons: Still needs some cleaning out of the fairways on several holes.Course is mixed in with walking trail.
Other Thoughts: New course layout that is less than a year old. Will be a very nice place to play after some more minor work to some of the fairways.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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