Daily Dose of Doglegs
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: (For my overall thoughts about Paradise Pointe as a whole, and the strengths and weaknesses of all three courses, see the bottom of this review).
Woodhenge offers the longest holes, some of the tightest lines, several low ceilings, and overall the most challenge of all three course at Paradise Pointe. With trapezoidal tees, bright baskets, a practice basket (albeit a small practice "green"), drinking fountains and bathrooms, a parking lot that will never fill up unless it's with boaters around the 4th of July, and good signage, your round is sure to get off to a good start.
A good start, that is, until you throw your first shot. Hole 1 sets the pace for an epic round with an intense double dogleg that after three rounds I haven't figured out. It's easy to see how to birdie it, but it will require two very precise, very different shots to get to the green. The other dogleg par 4's here are nearly as good - hole 7 is a sharp turn to the right, and 13 is shaped like a giant S with the approach near water. Some of the others (8, 18) can't be reached with a straight shot either, meaning you'll have to get at least a little creative on those holes.
Many holes have multiple distinct options available to them. Some have a specifically placed tree or clump of bushes in the fairway that you can go to either side of, but you will certainly be punished if you hit them. Holes 1, 3, 5, and 13 are all examples of this, and hole 1 has about four of these, making for an abundance of options. Hole 2 has two completely different routes you can take, each of which are roughly equally accessible.
Several holes, especially the par 4's, play into or out of the woods, or have an initial gap to hit. Hole 3 has a tight gap which I think is rather fair but opens up after. Hole 7 has the first half of the fairway in the open, but the second half playing downhill through a tunnel. Hole 13 plays through, then out of, then near, some woods.
On a few holes that don't have a whole lot of trees, they're used well to produce some good holes. I like the basket placement on 10, which is surrounded by a handful of trees that aren't too close to the basket, and if the tall grass is OB it'll be really interesting. Hole 17 uses a tree on the left side and its overhanging limb to force shots closer to the path, but the tee pad is placed in such a way that it's hard to throw under the tree, but even harder to go over. This course clearly had the best design of the three on the property.
The "filter holes", namely, holes 9-12, manage to provide some challenge and distance while not being utterly dumb. Unlike many other courses, they don't exist simply to produce 18 holes, they exist to get you from one epic part of the course to another. It's unfortunate there's no way for better holes to be put here without having a literal half mile between holes, but I'm just glad they're at least okay.
Cons: Because this course seems to be designed for the upper level of players, there are some gripes here that won't apply to some other courses. Namely, a lot of holes won't provide much challenge to even advanced players. Holes 6, 8, 9, 12, and 14 should be easy birdies once you've practiced them once or twice, or at least if you have the right shot in your bag (for example, a right-fading shot for 12). Holes 11 and 18 will probably be tweener par 3/4 holes, which means without editing them somehow, even they won't be much of score separators for some players.
This course really needs some longer pin placements, on holes like 6, 9, 11, and 12, or those holes need to be redesigned to be a little fairer to all players while still providing the most challenge for the top level. Even hole 4 might be on the easier side for an ordinary midrange shot, though I haven't mastered it yet, and its hills are used well to make the shot tricky. I would also like to see hole 3's tee be pushed back a bit; I think the current position makes it too easy to make the gap, giving you a fairly easy upshot, but a tee shot that's 50 feet longer would put more people scrambling for par.
Hole 8 is total garbage. If you have something that goes straight, then finishes left, it's an easy birdie, but there's an enormous dropoff on the right side that punishes errant shots without making the hole any harder. It's sad that some of the woods in this area had to be wasted on this hole.
There's rather a lot of walking, from 18 back to the northwest side of the parking lot, and getting to the tees of 6, 13, and 15. Given how much woods there is in the area of holes 5 and 6, a redesign of the holes in that area would help out this course quite a bit.
Other Thoughts: Parts of this course can get flooded, especially the walk from 3 to 4. I'll admit that I didn't want wet shoes, and I also didn't want to bust through the woods, so I took a half-mile detour through the fairway of 7 to backtrack to hole 4's tee.
I have mixed feelings about hole 15, the Woodhenge hole. It's the only par 5 on the property but will really play as a par 4 for professionals. You also cross the path twice on it, which is not ideal. However, it is a good example of a good, long hole with a lot of risk-reward potential, especially if the path, tall grass, and/or Woodhenge are OB. Feel free to pay homage to the disc gods on the summer solstice there, though, as long as you don't intentionally chuck plastic into the lake.
This is clearly the best course on the property, and I wish a little more attention could be given to it to make it even better, to make sure the lousy holes here are improved a bit. But it's still a lot of fun to play and has some really fantastic holes, namely the par 4's I mentioned multiple times in the pros. If paths or tall grass is OB, some more challenge will be added, though it will make holes like 11 and 17 a little too oppressive. That said, while this course has room to grow and improve, it is close to its theoretical best, and that shows how well it was designed. I may have been a little critical on this course's ability to challenge the higher level of players, but while those cons are valid, they still allow a pretty good rating for this course.
My thoughts on all three Paradise Pointe courses together:
Overall, Paradise Pointe is a great place to come play some Disc Golf. All three courses fell into some of the same pitfalls (potential flooding, narrow fairways with tall grass that were obviously filler holes, walking paths nearby, some holes feeling a little same-y), but in all honesty, Dick Parker managed to design three really solid courses on land that was only sometimes excellent for Disc Golf, and that's rather difficult. I also know things like the narrow fairways between tall prairie grass was unavoidable. And the courses share some of the same strengths (risky water shots, dogleg par 4's, good signage, drinking fountains and bathrooms). Even with only a little elevation change to work with, I managed to not miss it much, which I normally would on other courses. Also, if you like seeing deer while you play, this is the perfect place to be. The $6 per car entry fee is well worth it, especially if you're playing multiple of the courses (at least, it was $6 when I was there - I think the cost sometimes fluctuates). You can even jump from BC 5 to BT 1, and from BT 10 to WH 11, to make an epic 54-hole course, filling up on water around hole 1 at WH and BT. There are some improvements I would like to see made, namely, some new pin placements, especially at WH, which has the potential be a world-class course. I may have been a little harsh on the three courses because there were some flooding issues when I was there most recently, but I know that won't be the case most of the time. Anyway, I highly recommend coming here if you get a chance.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
A Lakeside Gem!
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Tons of parking near the practice basket and the first tee. The practice basket has a nice sized area on a slope to practice coming from above and below the basket.
The course sign has all the information you need. Take a picture of it if you need help with navigation... but you shouldn't need help with that since each tee has an 8 foot high pvc pole with yellow on top, and the basket locks point roughly to the next tee. The only tough spots are 3 to 4 and 12 to 13.
There's so much variety on this course. In the woods and out of them, so many of these holes are exceptional. I try not to go hole-by-hole in my reviews... but I have to here.
- Hole 1 starts off with a true 2-shot hole with a hard dogleg left in the woods, then the pin is tucked outside the trees to the right.
- Holes 4, 5, and 6 are thin wooded holes.
- Hole 7 is one of the 3 best holes on the course. 275 to the mouth of the hallway, then another 250 to the pin. it's a very well done par 4.
- Hole 8 hides a hard drop behind the pin.
- Hole 10 has a backhand and forehand line.
- Hole 13 is my personal favorite. Par 4, off the tee you want to get far enough left to have a chance at getting around the trees on your next shot, but you'll have to watch out for the water on your second shot. The green is tucked into the trees about 100 feet past the corner of the tree wall... there's so much going into this hole... I can't recommend it highly enough.
- Hole 15 is a tweener par 5. If you get the drive right you have an easy chance at birdie, and pros could definitely come away with an eagle, but if you get on the hill to the left or caught in the logs it's a tough 5.
- Hole 18 is a nice finish. A nice tree gap to hit off the tee, and running for the green in 2 has the danger of going in the water behind it.
The tee signs are very nice. They have been updated since the 2014 pictures and have more accurate distances. The tees themselves are fine size-wise, but I'm sure some people with big x-steps might need more room.
The Chainstar baskets are still in pretty good condition.
I appreciate the mix of wooded to open. They're put together very well and don't have too many of one or the other in a row.
Cons: It's unfortunate that there's only one pin spot per hole. There could be some really tough pins added.
The fairway of 5 is almost unfairly thin.
The end of the course is a long way from where you likely parked (by the practice basket)
Some of the trees need their low branches thinned out, on holes 3 and 10 especially.
Flooding can become an issue during rainy season. Hole 13's pin is the low point on the course, and the path from 3 to 4 can disappear underwater quickly too. The baskets of 3, 15, and 16 are the other testy spots, but they are a little higher up.
Other Thoughts: I have practically nothing to complain about. This is one of the best courses in the midwest. Holes 7, 13, and 15 are the highlights but they're backed up by a solid set of 15 other holes. There's plenty of distances, shot shapes, and trouble to make this an absolutely fantastic and challenging course. Completely worth the 6 bucks on it's own, but hey, you get two more courses for that price, too! I recommend playing this course first out of the three since it is the toughest.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: If you go to Paradise Pointe there are 3 full, 18 hole courses onsite. Woodhenge is the longest, and it has a bit of everything. Elevation is nothing extreme, but it is present on in small amounts on many holes. Water will be in the vicinity on a few shots. There are a handful of very woodsy lines that range from a tunnel shot, to a narrow window. There are several holes that are open and very long, with six par 4's and a par 5 on hole 15. The front nine has most of the wooded holes, with 2, 3 and 9 being the exceptions. The back 9 consists of more open looks with distance, hole 14 being the one wooded fairway.
Tees are concrete, tee signs are good quality, and the baskets are yellow and easy to spot. Look for the gold practice basket near the parking lot and you know you are close. The first hole is behind the restrooms, in the woods. The link to the course map can be very helpful if you are playing there for the first time. It has all three courses plotted.
My favorite holes were 5-8 and 13. Hole 5 gave me a birdie, with one of those great drives that rides the line perfectly. It is slightly uphill and has a few trees up the middle that must be avoided. Both sides of the fairway and behind the basket have heavy brush and trees. 6 is a similar look to the previous hole. Hole 7 is an open drive with a hard dogleg right into a tunnel. I nailed the drive, but dinked and dunked my way to a bogey. 8 is a short throw, but a deep ravine runs behind and to the right of the basket. I rolled into the deep end after a nice tee shot, and was able to save par.
13 is a narrow window, then crossing an open area toward the water, before turning back into a nook that is surrounded by woods. A tough par 4, but I saw my boy sink the birdie putt following a soaring approach. It is possible. 15 is the namesake hole, and it is a very long one, the only par 5. A signature hole with the many wooded poles standing in the grass as you near the basket. I put two nice shots to start, but overshot the pin and wound up underwater, taking a penalty and a bogey as a result.
Cons: The open holes are a bit similar and lined up several in a row. Using the property that is available, I think that the slight slopes and trees are utilized perfectly to make the best of it. Layout is a little choppy, but it isn't super difficult to follow. First time visitors should probably get the map or find a guide.
The park fee is $6 per vehicle per day. A reasonable rate, especially considering the 3 courses if you want to play all day. Bring cash, exact change preferably, the toll booth has been empty each time I have visited.
Winds can be a big challenge as they are at many courses around the midwest. The distance might detour beginners over to the white Beaver Creek course.
Beware of the locust trees! They have long, sharp thorns that puncture skin or shoe soles fairly easily. Luckily the small branch my girlfriend accidentally stepped on didn't stick too deep into her foot. Any branches on trees or on the ground should be looked over twice if you're anywhere near them. Vines with thorns lurk in the rough as well.
Other Thoughts: This is a really fun course. I played it for the first time recently, after playing the blue Black Thorn layout a few years ago. I think the gold is my favorite but both are pretty good. Advanced players will definitely want to stick to one of these.
The park is very well kept, with bathroom facilities open to the public and lots of parking. All of the disc golf gear is in nice working order.
I finished at 5 over par (67) on the gold Woodhenge course the first time through. Made birdies on 5 and 9, and probably should have had two or three more. I did have some trouble gaging the distance on my approach shots. Several baskets stand in the middle of grassy, open areas and I was underestimating the power to put into these mid range throws that I needed to get close to the pins. Then I overcompensated on the 15th and put it in the water, blowing a great birdie opportunity. Next time I am going to clean up a few of the mistakes and be around par, hopefully. I will be open to revisiting the park for sure, and recommend it to others.
14 of 15 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: dickparker
I'm glad you enjoyed the course. Great review with a lot of reasonable criticism. Thank you.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
If you like long holes then you're in luck!!
Pros: This course is well maintained and it has good signage. The tee pads are excellent and the baskets are painted yellow which make them easier to spot.
The wooded holes 4-8 were great and hole 7 was my favorite. You throw slightly uphill for a third of the hole then you must make a 90 degree turn to the right to a tunnel shot to get to the basket...sweet.
This course uses elevation well and all shots are represented from dog leg left/right, uphill/downhill wooded/open etc.
Has tall grass rough on a few holes as well as water threat on a few holes too.
Directional arrows to keep you pointed in the right direction.
Cons: The walk between some holes were longer than some of the holes themselves.(see the the transition from 12's basket to 13's tee) This will slow the flow of the round down a bit.
Holes 10,11, and 15 were very long and some players won't dig this.
The wind will factor in on the open holes and this is especially true on 10, 11, 15 and 16.
You have to cross some roads on this course to get to the next hole, so watch out for cars.
The draw that you cross to get to 4's tee could be wet at times.
Other Thoughts: This is a solid course and a good test of your short game on the wooded holes and your cannon on the long and open holes. My main beef is the walk between the holes themselves. With the course being 8200+ feet long you are getting in plenty of walking as it is. I like a long hole here or there but when they are back to back and then you have to walk 500+ feet to get to the next tee it just got old after a while. In my opinion this knocks this course down a bit. Again I wished I could give this course a 3.75 because its a bit better than a 3.5. I just can't give it a 4.0 because of the distance between holes, and personally I would like to see more wooded holes on Woodhenge.
Now don't let that keep you from playing this course. It is a good course. Just be prepared to get in your mileage on this course.
If you like to grip and rip then this course will be to your liking. As I said in my Beaver Creek and Black Thron reviews this disc golf complex is well worth the visit and the $5 entry fee. Load up the car and bring your friends and plan on spending the day playing disc golf in this 3 course complex. There is a bit of everything out here for every disc golfer.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: not crowded. Baskets yellow. Most inportant You X-step from wide to narrow off tee pad. well signed. Clean & well maintained.Front 9 technical. Back 9 requires long arm
Cons: I have a short arm and do not belong on Woodhenge. Who cares I had fun. Stay on fairway. We lost two in woods one in lake
Other Thoughts: If you live in KC metro put Smithville on your list. Carpool and make it a day trip playing each course. Smithville is beautiful and not crowded
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: dickparker
Thanks JP3, I appreciate your comments.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Worth the $5
Pros: -Great use of land
-I'm not all that good, I believe that even if I was, I would have to stop and think on almost every hole. Definitely challenging from hole to hole.
-Great start on hole one with an uphill hyzer shot followed by a slight anni fade into the basket. Horrible way to start a round, but the 4 is nice when you get it.
-Pretty view of the lake
-not played often, so the only delay you might have from hole to hole is having to look for your disc.
-Great combo of tough, technical shots, along with chances to air it out.
-Big fairways. Sure, the grass is long, but it's your own fault for throwing it in there.
-Great layout with good signage to show you exactly where the next hole is.
Cons: -Long/Natural Grass (holes 10 & 11 especially)
-Wish it were closer, and not so much of a destination course
-TICKS! (can be said for all three courses at Paradise Pointe).
-Hole 13. It's a great hole, but I have never been able to beat it, so I hate it until later.
Other Thoughts: Okay, so you pay $5 to play, but you gotta figure that it is for the development of the course. It's well worth it. Challenging, well maintained and something for everybody. I would like to say that it is a champion style course, but not being great at this sport, many courses are champion style. Go play it for yourself. I know I take people there often, and their reaction is the same as mine the first time; WOW!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
One of the Best
Pros: Woodhenge has it all! Long, short, open, wooded, water, wind. This course will challenge every part of your game. It is easy to follow with the great signs and the scenery is spectacular. The fairways are almost always well mowed. There is a seasonal convenience store near hole one and you can jump in the lake to cool down on a hot day.
Cons: Not enough trash cans.
Other Thoughts: One of the best in the KC area, and if you want something a little shorter there are two more courses in the same complex. This is a big course, but even as a 300 ft thrower it is one of my favorites anywhere. I purchase a yearly pass because of the disc golf complex.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Diverse mix of holes, lot of tough shots, mix of long and short, perfectly maintained fairways, extrememly clean, beautiful setting
Cons: Chest high rough and some of the most dense undergrowth in the wooded areas I've ever seen. We spent a ton of time looking for discs.
Other Thoughts: We'll play this again in the future but probably stick with early spring, late fall or winter. It would probably be better in the summer after they cut down the rough for hay.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Mixture of different types of scenery and shots> some wide open holes, some tight tunnels.
-Parking lot sits perfectly between 18th basket and 1st tee.
-Well kept, grass is mowed, trees aren't laying all over the place, trashcans aren't overflowing.
-Trashcans on almost every hole.
-Covers a lot of area making no chance of flying your disc in front of other golfers.
-Forces you to think out the hole in its entirety before making your tee shot.
Cons: -Some holes have some trees in somewhat suspect locations making some shots too pinpoint.
-A couple holes run parallel with the street which shouldn't be a problem but may want to keep your eyes open anyway.
Other Thoughts: -The native grasses are brutal. My buddy lost a disc in the grasses and we looked for thirty minutes for it with no luck. In fact, while we were looking, I was walking and about two feet in front of me, a massive doe jumped up and ran away. Crazy deep stuff.
-When I got to the car, I had to pull off about 25 ticks, which is expected when you're in nature.
-Though its closeness to the lake ensures cooler temps, it also ensures humidity>>Bring water to drink.
-Hole 15 is a great photo-op. I took a pretty nice panoramic shot from mid fairway.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: dickparker
0 Helpful / 4 Not
I'm glad you enjoyed the course. As for your suspect trees, I'm sure you are referring to hole 5 in particular. At some point I will be modifying this hole to take some of the luck out. The fact is, Smithville sees a lot of high winds and extreme weather. I left many trees in place due to the fact that if I started taking out trees, one day mother nature might take a few more and be left with a lackluster hole. But I get what you are saying.
As far as the grass is concerned, Smithville Lake has a hay lease with farmers. So that tall grass needs to grow for them to turn into hay bales at the end of the season. I look at the tall grass as OB. Make it a lynx style course if you will. But in all honesty... I hate the ticks and sorry your buddy lost his disc.
Thank you for the review.
Pros: + Top notch piece of land
+ Brand new baskets
+ Navigation is super easy because of all the signs
+ Good balance of short/wooded/long holes
+ everything is new and it's not one of the workhorse KC courses, so it should stay nice
Cons: - windy
- somewhat repetitive
Other Thoughts: lots of wildlife running around. Saw 4 deers when I played. Worth 5 dollars just to play this course.
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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