8 Helpful / 0 Not
Poor Design, But a Perk Nonetheless
Pros: 1. Seclusion. This 9-hole course is set in a dedicated area of the campground with no interference from the numerous other activities available. Even when I played on a really busy weekend, I rarely saw anyone using the course, so you're even secluded from other disc golfers.
2. Location. Baraboo is a great vacation spot, being very close to Wisconsin Dells (and notably, Baraboo itself is a good destination with a casino, museums and other attractions, and of course the very fun Baraboo Lions DGC, which is only 3.8 miles from the campground--although currently, nearly half of that course is pulled due to campus construction).
3. Navigation. Getting around this course is a piece of cake. From the obvious sign marking the start of the course, one only needs to follow the mowed paths in the prairie grass, which loop around conveniently and finish right near the entrance. Makes for a good quick round with no extra unnecessary walking or getting lost. Each hole is marked with a numbered post.
4. Baskets. The baskets are odd; I had never seen a model like these and assume they were made in some local's metal shop. I list them as a Pro because most campgrounds I've heard of with DG on site have only target golf or very shoddy/plastic baskets. These will hold up for a while it seems, but I will address them further in the Cons section.
Cons: 1. Design. This course suffers immensely from very poor design. Every hole is your basic RHBH hyzer or a wide open straight shot, which gets very boring, very quickly. With the amount of land set aside JUST for disc golf, it was obvious that the land could have been much better utilized. The absolute worst gimmick on the course was the basket for #4 (see course photos)--the basket, instead of being a strategic distance BEHIND the shrub, is literally IN the shrub, making the entire tee-facing side of the basket inaccessible (you can only deuce this hole by overshooting it and then approaching it from the back or sides). There is a sparsity of mature trees including some well-placed conifers, but the majority of "things to avoid" is the highly annoying tall prairie grass; while the fairways were well mowed, the untouched knee-high grass bordering these narrow swaths of landing areas is discouraging to new/beginning players, and serious players will be frustrated at having to look for discs longer without anybody picking up extra strokes from poorly placed shots. The dogleg fairway on #7 is completely unnecessary since it's a wide open hole and you can just throw straight at the pin from the tee.
2. Tees. While finding the tees is easy with the numbered posts, the posts DO NOT point in the direction of the hole, but rather face back up the path from the last basket you just finished to aid in navigation. The tees have no designated pads, not even flags, rocks, or any kind of markers, so you basically step up, locate the pin, and decide where you want to throw from. Since usage here is obviously minimal, there weren't even worn-down patches of grass to figure out where people usually play from.
3. Baskets. These locally made (??) metal baskets are a step up from target golf and obviously saved the campground some money when putting the course in, but they are crap; a single layer of heavy/stiff chains with a deep basket that narrows the catching area resulted in a lot of spit-outs and unfair bounces off the chains.
Other Thoughts: The only memorable hole for me here was #8, a blind shot over a hump that (of course!) finishes slightly to the left. I played it into a headwind both times, so really had to think about my release angle to avoid flipping over and winding up somewhere in the tall grass. Hole #9 is probably the longest hole out here, but fails to incorporate any of the surrounding natural features into its design, so you finish up with a really boring hole.
As stated in my review title, it's definitely a perk to have a course with baskets at a campground. Families who play DG together and find themselves wanting to take a vacation to WI Dells should consider this campground, as the activities are plentiful and the course here is short enough that kids would probably enjoy it if they know how to throw your basic RHBH hyzer. The course could really benefit from a total redesign, which I realize probably won't happen since DG isn't a moneymaking feature of the campground, but with the trees and sloping land, as well as a few boulders (which were surprisingly not factored into the design, either), there could be some challenge and real beauty put into this course--at least as much as would be possible for this little chunk of land with just barely room for these 9 short holes.
The "pay-to-play" on the Course Info page means that you have to be staying at the campground (and hence paying) in order to play here. There is, however, no per-round or per-day fee for the course.
The Ho-Chunk Casino is a few blocks away. Wisconsin Dells and Madison are under an hour away.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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