There once was a course on Nantucket
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: You're on Nantucket, so there's a good chance it's summer and your rode a bike here. So you're in a good mood.
This is a course in a forest, but it doesn't feel like any forest I've seen in the Northeast. The trees are predominantly coastal pines. They are hearty trees twisted by the wind, and they smell great. If you dropped me into this course blindfolded, I would have guessed from the scent that I was in the Black Hills of South Dakota or maybe the Rockies somewhere.
Every hole (with one or two exceptions) has two tee rubber pads. It's a course designed by John Houck, so there are multiple lines to the baskets with realistic landing zones. The variety of length is pretty dramatic, ranging from 178' to 868'. They're all good. The short ones did include a few ace runs, and the long ones are multi-shot tests that keep you from blasting your drive willy nilly. You need to give yourself a second shot.
I can't tell how this course came to be, because the fairways are beautifully carved out of dense forest. While the rough is really rough, the fairways are pristine. There are clumps of trees that define the throwing lanes, but otherwise the fairways are wide and grassy (the ground looked *nothing* like the brown pictures on this site; it was very lush).
Oh, and the flat, grassy fairways give us in the Northwest a chance at a shot we really don't get to throw much: the roller. I tried to resurrect my roller game with disastrous results. Fortunately those shots didn't count. Ahem.
Navigation was good. I consulted the map only once or twice and would have survived without it.
Cons: There is no elevation here at all.
The rough is about as bad as it gets. The fairways are wide, but it's windy here. Watch where your disc goes. If you throw a bomb and can't narrow your landing area to within 20', you might never find your disc.
It felt like the short holes got clumped into groups, so you played a few of them consecutively. I'm guessing this was a necessity given course constrains, but I do wish they were spread out a bit.
While all of the holes are good, there isn't any that stick out in my mind as mouth watering. The best courses have a few holes that you'd love another crack at. I'm always up for a second round, but I can't say after my first round I was dying to play this one again.
Other Thoughts: The CDC looks at Lyme disease diagnoses and likely cases, and Nantucket County came in #1. In the country. I wore pants and sprayed a lot of Off Deep Woods, and I didn't find any ticks. But take precautions. It's not hard to prevent, but don't be cavalier about it.
I had been told by a few people that this was the second best course in Massachusetts, so my expectations might have been a little high. It's not, and the rating on this course is a little high. Still, this is a great course that absolutely maximized the terrain.
I spent the day riding around the island here and at Cisco Brewery, and it was a memorable day. Bringing a car over is preposterously expensive, but getting here by foot, renting a bike, and making up island limericks is pretty reasonable. It makes for a great summer day.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Layout is incredibly fair while at the same time incredibly challenging.
Multiple lines on every tee pad to attack the course.
If you hit the fairway you have a look.
2 layouts to accommodate different levels of players .
Pads are mint.
Seating on every hole.
Baskets in great shape.
Excellent tee signs and next tee directions.
Practice basket to warm up.
Port o potty on site.
Groomed course. Lots of maintenance going on and it shows.
Incredible unique design that mixes New England style tight woods disc golf with long fairways and big par 4 and 5s.
Inviting, awesome community of players feeding and growing the sport on a remote island in the Atlantic Ocean.
Cons: Nothing critical to say about the course it self.
Could use some trash cans, but I am ok with carry in carry out here. You should be too.
Didn't experience this first hand during my late winter rounds , but the word from the locals is ticks are a problem and you should take great caution regarding these tiny blood sucking bastards.
Very remote location. Accessible only by plane ferry, or private boat. This con can be converted into a positive by planning a weekend visit or overnight stay. If you plan on making a day trip, be sure to plan your ferry rides, transportation to course and anything else you may like while on the island.
Other Thoughts: This is a destination course that any disc golfer should have on their bucket list.
You will need patience if you plan to play here.
It takes patience and time to get on the island and it takes even more to go from pad to pin on the long par 4s and 5s in this layout.
I would suggest planning a weekend to play the course and experience the island of Nantucket. Arriving during the off season months will make your trip less expensive, and will eliminate the congestion that the summer months bring.
Playing this course during the late fall, winter, or early spring, will eliminate the overpowering rough that lines the fairways of this masterpiece.
I can see this course becoming a disc golf cult classic. The near future will see dozens of players waiting in line to board ferries with bags of plastic on their backs and enormous grins on their faces. Grab your crew. Make a plan. Play this course over one of the 52 weekends you get during a year. No chance you regret it. At all!
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
AmazingNo Course and Worth the Trip
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is one of the prettiest, most fun, and most challenging courses I've ever played. You need a great game, and assortment of shots, and a fantastic mental game to even come close to taking par here.
Fairways are clear, with the room to go big but also the need to really hit your lines. Two very well thought out sets of tees. No, "Oh, well I guess we can just drop a tee here to make it shorter." Each tee has its own looks and set of challenges.
Its set up very much like a ball golf course. Lots of par 4s. A few BIG par 5s to really test you. Some 3s that offer birdie opportunities.
The course forces you to plan out your next shot very carefully. Very few of these holes are the "run the basket for birdie," kind. Its much more, "Shoot to here, shoot to here, shoot to here, putt for the par."
Cons: For a course that needs some really big throws, the tee pads are oddly small. The tees themselves are perfect size. But for some reason the flypads are cut really small. It makes for tricky run ups, and collected a LOT of water when we were playing in the rain. Even the next day when it was completely clear, there were moats around the fly pads.
No garbage cans on any of the holes, which resulted in a bunch of spots where people have just left their trash on the ground/in the woods.
None in December, but one of the locals I played with mentioned that the Poison Ivy is nasty there in spring & summer, and that the ticks are pretty intense. So, definitely long pants & spray when you play during the season.
No bathrooms. That's not a factor that really bothers me that much, and I try not to judge courses too harshly on that. Putting a bathroom or maintaining a Port-a-John at a course is tough. But I know its useful to a lot of people.
Other Thoughts: I didn't want to list it under the Cons, because its not really one. If you're in the rough, that's on you. Not the course. But the rough here is ROUGH. Stay. On. The. Fairway.
I had an absolute blast playing this course. My only real regret about it is that its on an Island, and I'll likely only get to play it 1x or 2x a year, if that. But I will absolutely be making the effort to go back and play. The course is incredible. The local DG community is incredibly warm & welcoming.
I cannot wait to play here again.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Just a beautiful, well-maintained, state forest, artistic, challenging, tree-filled (with some nice alleys), course. So worth the journey to the island. And free. Played w my college buddies and founder Todd Rainwater joined us for a few holes, great guy who has helped build something terrific.
Cons: No fun water hazards, but there is an ocean .5 mile away with one of the best beaches in the world, Nobadeer Beach!
Other Thoughts: Keep your eyes on discs, the island brush eats em up.
0 of 4 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 2 Not
The future of Disc Golf
Pros: The nicest course I have ever played. The fairways are 100% clear of stumps, fallen sticks and rocks: A roller's paradise. Grass is mowed and there is a plethora of equipment that is available to make the course outstanding. This is a work of art by the one and only John Houck. Lots of placement shots are required to shoot well here. It is a legit par 68. While it might favor lefty's just a little bit if you can`t throw straight you are doomed. The defined fairways are generous and the canopy is very scenic. Distance varies from 178` to 868` on the long tees and challenges your golf game as well as your mental game.
The tee pads are nice and flat and oversized (7` x 10`). There is an alternate tee with pads just as nice on every hole, except 7, where they share one. Tee Signs on every hole show you multiple lines to the basket and the ideal landing zones. There is no OB here but the rough is very unforgiving.
Benches on every hole (some really large) and a great kiosk near hole 1 with scorecards.
Lots of walking trails in the state forest make you forget you are on an island.
Cons: There is no bathroom at the course. Lots of poison ivy in the rough. Somewhat easy to get turned around between some holes with multiple paths (bricks would be helpful).
Other Thoughts: It is expensive to get out here to just play disc golf but it is definitely worth the trip if you can. Rent a bike instead of taking the cabs (super expensive).
14 of 16 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
From the Rec Player Perspective
Pros: -Inviting kiosk with good scorecard/map at the sand parking lot.
-I loved this course because the experience for a recreation level player wasn't an afterthought; it's baked in to the design. From the "normal" aka "short" (don't call them "novice" tees), this will provide an interesting challenge to players who drive under 300'. For the big arms, you can back up to the "Pro/Long" tees. From the short tees a good rec player can make pars and have several birdie opportunities if you are on your game... but let your concentration slip and your disc can sail off into the dense Nantucket Island forest. Used my entire bag and every type of throw I have at least once... though I'll have to admit the successful roller was accidental.
-Nearly every hole has at least one and usually two reasonable lines to the basket... but miss those lines and you'll be struggling with bogie or worse likely.
-Both the normal and long tee boxes are big, level, and grippy, even when slightly damp. They are wood framed rubber pads with on stone dust. Fully accommodates left handers, right handers, flicks, and backhands, whatever you throw.
-Wooden benches on every tee box, both short and long
-Informative signs (accurate yardage, plus pay attention to the lines) on both short and long tees.
-Nice new Innova Pro baskets with a distinct Maroon color band. The greens are fair, many have wood chips.
-Friendly and passionate group of locals looking out for the course and keeping it nice. We got invited to play league doubles, too bad I couldn't make it, would have been fun.
-Great practice basket near first tee.
-Occasionally some interesting wood structures in the fairways that make for some photo ops
Cons: -Lack of amenities keeps this from getting a five star from me. No bathrooms, no trash cans, but we did find running water after #16. My wife always reminds me that no bathrooms is a bigger burden on women than men "since you have about 40 acres of urinals" on an average wooded New England course.
-As everyone mentions, the island is remote and an expensive destination, though this isn't a fault of the course. If you are looking to mix some history and disc golf into a nice beach/island vacation, this isn't a con at all. Without a car from town you can bike part of the way on a safe bike path, but watch out for frustrated drivers at the rotary's (traffic circles of confusion if you are not a New Englander). This small island can have big traffic all summer.
-Ticks and poison ivy (and the whole island is a beach, wear your sunscreen), plus the rough will scratch you up when looking for those mis-throws.
-Was hoping for an ocean view somewhere on the course, but the best you can do is smell the sea breeze and walk the sandy fairways.
Other Thoughts: If you can't throw 300' with accuracy, you (and everyone playing behind you) are much better off playing the front tees.
The island is just an overgrown sandbar, there is no elevation to speak of, but the designer has mixed in some tunnel holes where you must keep a drive low, and a few spots were a high hyzer spike over the scruff can be the easiest path to birdie, so the elevation changes come in shot shape.
As one novice player in our group said, "this is a pleasant walk in the woods". Melville said of Nantucket: "Some gamesome wights will tell you that they have to plant weeds there, they don't grow naturally; that they import Canada thistles", but I can tell you that if you get off fairway you will encounter the dense beach scrub that anchors the island and will eat discs. Be prepared to spend some time looking for errant throws, and if you are lucky enough to find your disc forget about par and hope you get back to the fairway.
Although this course is "rec level" player friendly, it's not really a beginner friendly course. A lot of time might be spent looking for lost discs.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Sweet Destination Course
Pros: Located on the island of Nantucket about two miles east of the town, the Nantucket Disc Golf Course is a must play. The grounds are absolutely pristine and well maintained. The rubber tee pads are totally level and quite large. The baskets are in great condition and have red paint to make them easy to spot from a distance. The signage here is excellent. Tee signs show distance, par, hole number, and a fairway map and navigational signs make getting around the course very easy. There are two sets of tees on most holes and both are quite long and challenging. There are actually more par 4's and 5's here than par 3's. The woods make things challenging, but the fairways are well defined and wide enough to give you room to throw hard. This course will probably challenge the best of the best. There are rustic log benches at every tee. There is plenty of parking here, though if you don't live on the island, you probably won't have a car with you. The forest here is also beautiful.
Cons: This course is flat. The terrain doesn't allow for any elevation, but I really love having some up and down to play with. Since many of the fairways are so long, the flat terrain gets a touch boring for me. The course also lacks a signature hole that stands out among other holes I've played. The course also lacks amenities like restrooms and running water. Additionally, it's great that this course is a destination, but that also is a con as well. The island is tough and expensive to get to and unless you are staying on the Cape, it would be a tough day trip. Once you're on the island, everything is expensive, and to get to the course you've either got a significant hike on foot or $25-$30 in taxi fare round trip. Not that this is a real detriment to the course, but it's good info to know that this is not a "drop-by" course.
Other Thoughts: This course is definitely worth playing if you will be coming to the island at all. It's definitely out of the way, but that is part of its appeal at some level. It's definitely worth playing as a disc golf vacation. Bring your long bombs and enjoy the island!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 2 Not
Worth the Trip!
Pros: Course was designed by John Houck. The club on the island of Nantucket has put in a tremendous amount of work to make this course as beautiful as the houses on this historic island. Plenty of long holes, with fairways that have been diligently groomed plus all stumps had been remove on the first 3 holes with more to come! Perfect balance of Par 3's,4's and 5's to make a great modern disc golf course.
Cons: No many to mention. I would say the only Con is the high ferry fee to get to the island but if you make a whole day of it or even and weekend I think you would be pleasantly surprised.
Other Thoughts: I had the honor to spend a few days with Todd(Co-Designer) and the entire crew from the island and had a great time! Everyone was very friendly. They have all gone to great lengths to clear this course. I look forward to coming back and playing the course the next time I am in the area.
8 of 10 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
There once was a course on Nantucket
Pros: Long fairways that are exceptionally laid out. This course is challenging and fun. The long tees require big and technical shots, which is not common on many new england courses. Playing the short tees is just as good!
Cons: Must watch out for poison ivy off of the fairways.
Other Thoughts: I was lucky enough to play this course multiple times over the course of a weeks vacation. I left that week feeling better about my game and a little more in touch with my forehand. The course was clean and well maintained. Grounds crews were working the whole time. Natives were extremely helpful and friendly. MUST PLAY!
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Sick - Houck Design
Pros: Incredible course and design. This course calls for golf shots, not just hucking and praying. The course offfers great reward for well placed shots, but can be somewhat forgiving for errant shots that require a very skilled shot to get back on track. Holes range from huge monsters to small corridor shots. While the terrain is mostly flat, the winding design and layout make up for it. Signage is good, although the mandated color scheme can make directional arrows a little tough to see. Course upkeep and cleanliness is huge, you can tell that the NDG crew takes great care of their home course. I will make any excuse to play this when I can.
Cons: You have to take a ferry or plane to get there, but that can be exciting too :-) Lack of elevation.
Other Thoughts: Cant wait for the Island Trifecta to start between clubs and the first Nantucket Tournament!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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