4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Kilborne is one of the oldest disc golf courses in Charlotte. Despite many tweaks over the year, including a bunch within the past decade, it is still a blast to play - and retains the same Kilborne feel! Every hole is equipped with concrete tee pads, colorful tee signs, baskets (18 new Veteran Baskets by Dynamic Discs recently installed), benches, and garbage cans. Kilborne is a multipurpose park, with restrooms, water fountains, and plenty of parking.
There are multiple layouts at Kilborne, that allow for a wide array of golfers to play here and be adequately challenged. The hardest of which, Skillborne, will surely test even the most advanced golfers. Despite being carved out of the woods, like Reedy Creek the fairways are generally pretty forgiving (Skillborne not so much). However if you manage to take a bad skip or ricochet off into the woods, you may find yourself in dire straights. This course is still going to reward accurate, technical golf - and will require you to play multiple style of shots to score well. There are plenty of looks at Birdie though, as long as you have a good shot off the tee!
It is pretty astounding how secluded this course can feel at times, given it is located in a fairly busy section of the city. There are times when you are playing through the beautiful woods, that you might actually forget you are near the heart of the Queen City altogether.
After park construction forced the course to be tweaked, Kilborne has seen many variations. I think the new Hole 1 (which combines aspects of old Holes 1 and 2) is one of the best opening holes, and in its current form - I think it is perfect. A long open shot that slightly hyzers into the woods, with a detention pond near the turn acting as OB. This also allows old Hole 2's tee to be utilized as a drop zone, and no longer be a weird remnant of a past course.
Most holes have two tee pads and two baskets, each one pertaining to one layout. This does offer an incredibly amount of variety, with 4 different potential layouts. This increases the replay value of this course dramatically if you live in the area.
Cons: As I said before, this course seems to have been tweaked a lot over the years and that means that I have almost never played the course when the tee signage was actually accurate. While this is not necessarily the end of the world, it is annoying for someone who likes to track their scores on a course. I haven't yet played Skillborne, it wasn't quite finished when I used to play here, and some of the tees were covered in leaves the last time I went.
Currently, the new Veteran Baskets are all set out for the 2018 Am Worlds Layout, which is probably a Red course, which is both less challenging and less interesting than the White layout I played when I first made my way to Kilborne. At that time, Holes 3, 6, 12, 15, and 17 were all Par 4. Now, with the exception of 17, they feel generic. Which is a shame because the Par 4s were like my favorite holes on this course! Of these holes, I really don't understand why you would want to turn Hole 15 into a short Par 3. From its usual pin position, the peninsula green makes it the signature hole on the course, and one of the best in the area. Right now there baskets on that hole, which means you get to play the normal position, hopefully after Worlds all of the Veteran Baskets will be placed in the normal positions.
Kilborne Park is not located in the worst area of town, but it is also not the nicest either. This is not really unusually when you look at some of the nearby courses. However, Kilborne generally attracts more non-disc golfers to the course: loitering around the benches. I've never had any problem with anyone here, some will even be interested in the game, but I can find them or their smoking to be distracting at times.
There's really not any elevation within the park to be used. You might see some slight uphills/downhills, but nothing to write home about. The biggest elevation change in a hole occurs on Hole 15.
Other Thoughts: I am going to rate Kilborne as a 3.5 - but I don't believe that rating truly does the course enough justice. However, I can't justify giving it a higher rating because it really does need a bit of a facelift. I think Kilborne/Skillborne is one of those parks that could make really good use of painted bands on the baskets - the way Renaissance is done. If this is done, Tee Signs are made more accurate (with painted bands this course could utilize four generic layouts), and Hole 15 is returned to its peninsula placement to regain its signature status, this course would easily warrant a higher rating.
*I understand the course is being primed for the 2018 Am Worlds, so I plan to re-evaluate this review after that tournament.
Favorite Kilborne Holes: 3, 6, 12,15 (Par 4 Versions)
Favorite Skillborne Holes: N/A
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Good, Not Great
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Nice tee boxes and signs on each hole.
-Practice basket right beside first teepad.
-Parking lot is easily accessible.
-Navigation is pretty easy. I did get lost at one point the first time I played here, but it was my own fault.
-1-4 are nice starting holes, each asking for a different type tee shot - I like that 4 gives two routes.
-15 is my favorite - uphill tee shot then you have a choice to go for a semi-island green or lay up for par. I think it's a cool layout.
Cons: -Baskets can be hard to see if you're not pretty close - no bright yellow/white bands.
-Multiple fairways were more dust/dirt than grass, which was kind of annoying - I know this may not seem like that big of a deal, but I remember it happening a lot.
-Not quite sure what happened with the Skillborne layout, but the baskets look completely abandoned now - kind of an eyesore.
-8 has been mentioned as a filler hole, but I think the stretch of 7-9 is a bit too simplistic.
Other Thoughts: I like Kilborne, but it is not as great as the other options in Charlotte. I prefer Angry Beaver, Winget, Renaissance, Nevin, Hornet's Nest, RL, Robbins, and Bradford. That being said, there is nothing terrible about Kilborne. I just don't think it is as great as the aforementioned courses that I would choose over Kilborne.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Has concrete tee pads for all tees
Has tee signs
Has many benches throughout course
Course navigation without a map is fairly straightforward
More wooded than open fairways with doglegs and slight elevations - which will be challenging to the casual player
Almost all of the holes are under shade where this can be really appreciated in the hot and humid summers
Baskets are hard to locate on some holes - need flags or bright paint
Course design and flow could use improvement as there is an awkward transition between holes 8 & 9
Multiple baskets on some holes can be confusing for the first timer
Course can get crowded at times as it's popular with parkgoers and players
This a nice, fun multi-use 18 hole course in Charlotte that I enjoyed playing on a Saturday afternoon while vacationing out here. After playing Hornet's Nest and Nevin parks, I found it hard to be impressed with this course. Course is mostly wooded and flat with plenty of shade. Course has that vintage feel with it being broken in and the old Mach 3 baskets. Most baskets were difficult to locate from the tees. Some holes had two baskets - which was a little confusing at first. Hole 9 has that filler hole vibe and could have been designed better to avoid that awkward transition from hole 8. The park seems to be popular with parkgoers as some were scattered sporadically throughout the course. This is a very good course but the course's quality does pale in comparison to some of the higher caliber courses in the area and may be worth skipping if your playing time is limited.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Worth the drive in the Charlotte metro!
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: There are so many positive attributes to this course that it's tough to know where to begin, and I'll try not to regurgitate what's already been reviewed.
- It's worth the half hour drive from LKN and Davidson where I live.
- The variety of holes and terrain you'll see on this course is as well done as possible for a course so close to downtown CLT and in such an urban area.
- The fairways are truly outstanding, clear, but also challenging enough where you'd better be fairly accurate.
- The balance in left to right handed throws, hooks, curves, etc is very fair, and you get to use every type of shot, from forehand, to sidearm, to a tomahawk.
- Great signage, tee pads, pathways, etc.
- Hole 15 is one of the most challenging and scenic holes you could get for a city park, almost worth going to.
Cons: - There can be many runners/walkers/hikers interfering with the layout, but nothing too interrupting.
- Hole 8 is extremely short and lacking a challenge.
- Holes 11 and 14 are almost the same exact hole.
That's really it, and this is nitpicking.
Other Thoughts: Find a way to play here if you love to play, a great layout and it can be a pretty quick play, never seems to be too crowded somehow. If it's too far to be in your regular rotation, at least get here once to experience an outstanding urban course.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Great and Challenging course
Pros: I love Kilborne. This course is a great challenge and offers a great variety for all levels of player. Shooting a good score will take every disc in your bag and every shot in your arsenal. The fairways are mulched and well maintained. A lot of the holes have fairways wide enough to let you really rip off a big shot, but control is essential if you want to bring your score down. It's been a while since I've played it, but I have some of the fondest memories playing here and the other courses around Charlotte.
Cons: Getting into the woods is dangerous. The first time I played this course, I was still only an amateur level player and it ate me alive. As my game progressed and I became more familiar with the course, I was able to bring the score down, but I attribute a lot of my growth in the sport to this course. Beginners will be very frustrated, but if they stick to it, they will find it improves their game drastically.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I am so jealous of the Charlotte disc golf scene! I live in Raleigh. We have a lot of good courses and more are going in every year. But the concentration of solid courses in Charlotte is truly impressive--Kilborne being a great example. I was in town for a short business trip, so I had my list of courses, sorted by rating. I got to play one at the top of my list, RL Smith, and had time for one close to downtown, so I played Kilborne. I guess I was expecting an "average" course since it doesn't get the hype of some of the high-profile tracks. Boy, was that assumption wrong! This is a very good course (borderline excellent) that has aged amazingly well. It reminds me of my home course, Cedar Hills, but in my opinion, it's a superior course (better tees, fairer fairways, nicer).
+ Nice, wide fairways that fit the length of the holes nicely.
+ No problems with the tees.
+ Good navigation and tee signs.
+ I can't believe this course is so close to downtown Charlotte. At times, I felt like I was in a secluded forest. I didn't hear traffic, just birds. You can tell the course is up there in age, but it's still very aesthetically pleasing and peaceful.
+ Great layout. I really liked the par 4's. Good mix of hyzer, anhyzer, and straight throughout the course. Good mix of distances too. It's perfect for intermediate to advanced players.
+ Not much of a risk of disc loss.
Cons: I have a few nit-picks, but not much at all:
- I forget the hole numbers, but right around the turn, several baskets are close together and you have to backtrack on a fairway (either #8 or #9) to get to the next tee.
- Some of the baskets are wearing down and they're hard to spot with the wooded backdrops. It'd be nice to get some new baskets with big yellow bands.
- I didn't see anything shady myself, but others have noted that there can be issues in the park itself. Probably best to be alert and aware of other people in the park.
Other Thoughts: If you're visiting Charlotte, don't overlook Kilborne--especially if you're an intermediate player. I played RL Smith, RenSke, and Kilborne this week. RL Smith was the top course, but extremely demanding (physically and in terms of shots needed). The fun factor on Kilborne was right up there with RL Smith, for me. (RenSke was pretty good too, but closer to average.)
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Classic Charlotte course. Fun, pretty, challenging
Pros: Where to start? This course is a prime example of Charlotte disc golf, and has no doubt been played and loved by tons of players.
The course is mostly wooded, and well worn in. The fairways are worn in and leave no doubt where you need to throw. You can really tell this course has been around quite some time. For good reason
The tee signs are almost all new and up to date (thanks to the recent Masters tournament I assume) and really help a first timer on the course navigate each fairway as some baskets are not in view from the tee pad.
Challenging design! Not one hole is the same and it's awesome. Each new hole is a new challenge, and the course as a whole requires all kinds of tee shots.
There are Hyzer and Anhyzer holes. Holes with multiple lines, and holes with long winding lines to the basket. Bring your A game as a off line tee shot can make for a difficult par save.
The park itself is quiet, and the course wanders through most of the available real estate, making for a nice walk through some beautiful woods. A great place for DG
Along with the great mix of hole layouts, there is also a nice mix of hole lengths. Even though most of the course plays in the woods, you can, and need to power a few drives down the fairway for some of the longer holes. Then the next may be a shorter, tighter under 300ft hole where a mid range may be all you need.
Mostly adequate signage leading from one basket to the next tee.
Cons: The older baskets don't seem to grab as well as the newer versions. Although not a major con as it adds to the challenge, but you'd better be dead center or not far off from it for it to stick.
There are several baskets near the turn that are all near each other. I don't remember the exact numbers of these baskets, but on a crowded day I can see this being a potential hazard, or distraction on those crucial putts!
Even though the tee signs have the direction from the basket to the next tee, and as mentioned in the Pros section most holes have some directional signage, there are still several holes with out any direction to the next tee pad. Just a minor Con as it's generally an obvious path leading to the next pad
Other Thoughts: A great example of Charlotte disc golf, and one of the originals. Fun to play and full of challenging and rewarding golf shots.
The course requires accuracy, power and patience.
Bring your A game and enjoy one of Charlotte's prime courses. Highly recommended
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 17 Not
Needed Midrange and pitter
Pros: They had baskets and tee pads. Short course and can be played quick. Good lines. I would play this course again
Cons: Not anything more than a Midrange and Putter is really needed, only holes 1,6, 15, 16,& 17 needed anything more than a Midrange, think throwing a midrange could have the same score or close to it. I have been told that I only played the shorts with no longs.
Other Thoughts: Lock up you car, a lot of homeless looking people are in the park. I counted at least 4 when I got there in the morning to play. Not saying they would take anything but better safe than sorry
1 of 18 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: All of the Killborne holes are in great shape. Baskets are all in proper working order. There is very little foliage you can't walk through so losing a disk is very unlikely. The course has a great mix of distances and left and right shots making you throw a good mix of shots to score well here. The fairways are far but if you miss the line it's a challenge on most of the holes to up and down for par which I like. Signage on all but 1 of the holes (11 I think). Clear indicators on most of the holes where to go next. No real chance of killing walkers or other golfers either one any of the holes.
Cons: The Skillborne course is in rough shape. It must not get played much because some of the tee pads are almost overrun with underbrush and so too are some of the extra walks to the baskets that are in a difference location then the Killborne basket. No signage on any, and I mean any, of the Skillborne course either.
Back to Killborne. Only real con I have is the tee pads on 1 and 2 are way to short, to the point of unfair, on 1 especially, for the length of the hole. My other con is kind of a cheesy one in that I don't like the drop zone for the water hazard on 15. Just seams kinda silly to walk over to Gilligan's Island just to put to the basket then walk back around.
Other Thoughts: I will be playing this course a lot as it is one of the best ones in the Charlotte area. Just wish Skillborne got a little TLC because I would love to try that course too.
I would love to see the basket on 15 moved from behind Gilligan's Island to on it! Think that would be a fun challenge.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Great layout. The course was in perfect condition when I went yesterday and I loved the long tee shots where I could let the disc fly.
Cons: Hard for Novices. Some of the holes I was like "How am I supposed to get a birdie on this 400 foot Par 3.
1 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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