The Story of the Knoxville Open: Part 2
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: -Once I'm done with my round at Tommy Schumpert, I'm thinking "Hrrrrr. I better shoot better at Morningside." Cause I was in like 21st out of 40 in MA1. That does not cut it! Anyway, I drive up here just to make sure my GPS gave me the right directions (it did.) So I drive to McDonald's and have the slowest wait of my life, without getting food. The drive thru line is pretty long but it's taking the people forever to get their food. What does Benny do? He simply stomps on the gas and swerves on outta there and goes to a gas station.
-I'm two miles away from Morningside and I'm in the middle of the city. So if you are hungry, then you'll have no problem some place (unless you are some sort of a hypochondriac.) I find a gas station and it's quite crowded and I'm thinking to myself "I better not be late. I already have one bad round and I'm not getting a frickin' 7 on a hole that I should have no trouble getting a 3 on."
-Finally get back and I park in the small parking lot because I hate parallel parking. I REALLY hate it. Anyways, I see the first hole and it's a neat starter hole that has a fair challenge to it. Turns out I'm not late at all but probably too early. I see the woods and see 18's basket. The hole is really steep uphill. It's a frickin' wall and I walk down that wall just to play the hole. It's a fun finisher! 170' and straight uphill. Very hard on rollers so it's not a sidearm shot at all. It's a great backhand putter shot that'll lead you to a death putt unless you park the heck out of it.
-After I practice on #18, I simply walk up the fairway and walk back down to the pavilion a safer way, cause there's no way I'm backtracking THAT hole again. I see more good looking holes and see that this course offers a nine hole loop. You could play #1-6, #16-18.
-After I figure some stuff out and warm up, the round starts and my card is on hole 6. And we all screw up our drives on this easy 360' footer. I start off quite dreadful with a couple ho-hum pars and a bogey on #8 because I miss a 12' footer. I continue to screw it up on hole 9. Usually on holes such as that one, I do well on. Because it's a standout downhill hole. It's a neat right to left open hole around some growing trees. It was in the short pin when we played it, and it looks funner in the long pin. Still a great one in the short. I'm one over after four holes and I'm just trying to cling to hope that I'll shoot better here because it's more forgiving than Tommy Schumpert.
-I make a couple birdies but I don't get my you know what together until hole 15. I'm playing pretty bad until I get to what would be a tie for my favorite hole. This hole was in the long pin (330') and it's flat for maybe 150' and goes STRAIGHT down a long way. STRAIGHT down. I throw a putter and hit a couple of the limbs in a tree off the pad, and I'm over the sidewalk past the basket. Which we played casual. I sink a large birdie putt, and part of that may have been the fact that I really love this hole. The final four stretch is great.
-#16 through 18 are mostly wooded. #16 is a relatively easy ace run, but the basket is in a rather dangerous position. I par this and no one on the card birdies this one, so we are all pretty bummed by that. #17 is my other favorite hole. It's a super fun 290' wooded hole along a sloping green. The pin position on this hole is probably arguably the most intimidating, with the other being #18's which I already mentioned. Instead of playing the original #18, we played an alternate hole. Once we get to that hole, I'm still shooting badly. I make a good 20' birdie putt on the alt. hole and we go to the first hole. I almost ace it, and Justin Carter on my card DOES ace it! So we are all shouting and celebrating that.....
-We end on hole 5. Which is a super cool shot that seemed like a mirror version of #5 at Glenn Hilton in Hickory, NC. The hole is tight, yet manageable. It's about 320' feet, so I throw a truth and it goes dead straight and slides left on the sloping fairway. The round ends with me shooting a decent six under.
-More onto the course itself, it's very hilly. There are a few steep uphills and straight downhills. A few had to have been more than 40'. The variety is also great. It's mostly forgiving but a couple of the wooded holes are real separators.
Cons: -Few filler holes here and there. Not very many, as there are dual pin positions on some holes. I wasn't all that fond of #13. It's a flick shot along a sloping hill, but all in all is kinda bland. Some people may disagree with my opinion here, like what you like.
-Course plays along a cart path and a sidewalk. I know that there are many pedestrians that hang around here. Most sidewalks were played casually. Which I doubt they were supposed to but it really doesn't matter, since it helped our scores anyhow.
-This course is sketchy. There's no convenient bathroom, and there's a good bit of litter.
-Because of some sloping fairways and dangerous greens, it can be dangerous after a rainfall. We didn't play 18 and it wasn't even that wet. If it was when I practiced on it, I would've fallen down, covered in mud and dirt, and looked like Pigpen from Charlie Brown.
Other Thoughts: -I ended up getting in a four way tie for 11th out of 40. Justin on my card ended up getting the hot round in advanced. Me and this guy named Jordan shot 51's, which would've put us in fourth if only that round counted. The last six holes, I shot five under on. If only I started the way I ended. Anyway, I loved this course and I loved the variety here. For the most part, it's not AMAZING but it's better than average.
-I kinda wish I started here. Tommy Schumpert is not an easy course to start your day on. Morningside is forgiving, and it's easy to shoot under par on. So if you screw up on a hole, it's easy to move on from it. I bogeyed #14 because of a roller down the hill, and made up for it on #15. I think I would've shot the same thing if I played here first, and would've shot slightly better if I played Tommy S later on.
-I recommend this course. It's a great one!
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Nice and large, mostly flat tee pads with good grip even after rain. Elevation change on every hole, some significant at 30+ feet. Good variety of shots and various routes to take which adds to the fun. Some easy twos and ace runs but also a few you can air out your fastest drivers if you're playing longs. Two baskets on some holes with talks of getting more sleeves and baskets in the ground soon with hopes of getting two baskets on all 18. Three cement picnic tables with covers, a small pavilion with roof, and a large covered pavilion that is great for hosting events or getting out of the rain. Water spigot near the pavilion with a clean porta-potty that has appeared recently. Recycling and trash cans at the park. Grass height is maintained frequently enough. Practice basket with elevation change. DisCatchers are showing wear and a little rust but not enough to make it any type of issue.
Cons: The paved trails are littered with fallen branches. The drainage ditch on holes 7 and 10 is so eroded it could swallow a disc golfer. Lots of non-disc golfers use this park. Lots of broken glass so forget rubbing your hand in the dirt for grip.
This is not a cart-friendly course whatsoever. The walking paths are steep, slanted, and can be slippery due to high clay content in the soil. Benches are few and far between so bring a seat. Not the best course to play alone cause of all the riffraff.
Other Thoughts: This place is somewhat of a haven for the city's drunks, prostitutes, and drug users. That being said, it's a great course for beer and such as cops and the city kind of ignore the everyday craziness at Morningside, for whatever reason.
This course will really wear you out on a hot/humid day. The hikes on holes 10-15 will even cause the physically fit to huff and puff. Rollaways can be very frustrating here, but I don't see it as a con, rather it just adds to the challenge and forces you to learn how to recover. Locals often say "Morningside" or the like, following a rollaway, even when at nearby courses, lol. The fun factor is high, especially on league dubs nights. I'd estimate 25-35% of locals would call Morningside their favorite Knoxville Course.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Tons o' Fun if you have a map!
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Others here stated that this course would be better if it was in a different setting. I think that's way overblown. Yes, you'll find some broken glass here and there but it's not in an area to worry about your safety. Morningside is a classic city park course with lots of creative lines and elevation. Several holes have MULTIPLE perfectly fine Innova baskets just for fun. I especially enjoyed the boulder-guarded 5, the mound-topped 7, the long 555ft downhill 9, tough-windowed 11, Idlewild-style tight wooded 14, and the deceptively difficult super-uphill 18. Tee pads are fantastic. Maintenance is strong. You'll have some great views of downtown at 12's basket. Each hole had plenty of character and I'd be proud to have this course in my hometown.
Cons: Navigation is the biggest issue here. I had the DGCR map ready to go from the start but I still wasn't ready to find the transition from 13 to 14 (you'll have to walk up the 11 fairway to get there, bummer). Clearly, the designers went with ideal hole design at the expense of goofy navigation. Signs need a major upgrade too.
Other Thoughts: If Morningside had great signs and better navigation aides, this would be a 4 star course! Definitely play here if you can. I'm very impressed with the Knoxville disc golf scene and the investment they make in their courses. Make sure to play The Claytons and Tommy Shumpert while you're in the area.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Great Course in the hood
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is a terrific disc golf course, lots of fun to play and makes you use side arm throws, rollers, turnovers, giant hyzers, all of it. It's challenging but you can still go low. Lots of pin placements give a chance to roll back down so it teaches you to play smart. Good baskets and great big concrete pads. Course really makes good use of the space it has. Basket locations move around pretty regularly.
Cons: It's in the hood. Signs get beat up there is broken glass, litter and nastiness all about. If this course was on a farm in the mountains, all else being the same, it would be legendary. As is, the neighborhood takes away a point+ off the rating, it's a factor. There are walking paths through the course and sometimes you have to warn people you are throwing. Watch out for dog poop.
Other Thoughts: This is my home course, I play it once a week at least and was tempted to give it a higher score just because I've grown to love it. Play it, see what you think.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Diamond in the rough.
Pros: 1. Tees: level, large, well marked for the most part.
2. Variety: Short, Long, Uphill, Downhill, Left, Right, Rollers, Risk/Reward.
3. The course itself is great. It challenged me and it was downright hard for my girlfriend who had 9 holes under her belt prior to us playing this course.
Cons: Locale: I wouldn't go near this course after 4pm. I'm not an alarmist, thats just common sense. Broken glass, other debris around the course. If it had more garbage cans I would have been inclined to pick up alot of trash. Theres a dangerous piece of something like re-bar about a foot and a half long sticking out of the ground on the back nine. Sorry I can't be more specific, it was last week. Interesting characters walking the park and it was before noon. Walking paths, roads, fitness stations, drainage ditches, apartment complexes, picnic tables, there are extra considerations all over this course.
Other Thoughts: I am no pro. Intermediate who throws about 400-450 RHBH. Flat n level alot less. I've been playing off and on for about ten years. Picked up the game in Montana. Go Griz!
The course itself is great. The neighborhood might be considered dangerous by some. Be aware of your surroundings at all times, general rule.
Great course all around
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Morningside Park is a beautiful eighteen hole course very close to downtown Knoxville. Baskets are mostly in great condition. The concrete tee pads are level, large, and seem relatively new. A sign at the head of the course makes it easy to find where the course starts. Tee signs on every hole have a map of the hole, distance, and par information. When I played, the grass was recently mowed, foliage was well kept and there were few places where one was susceptible to losing a disc. Some tees have benches. Elevation is used very effectively with lots of holes playing up and down rolling hills and elevated basket placement. Great variety of hole distances ranging from 170 to 555 feet as well as straight, right, left, uphill, downhill, and flat shots. Hole 9 is the longest and a real standout hole. Many holes have two pin positions. The park has many mature trees that provide challenge through low ceilings and tight windows especially in the summer time. Wasn't crowded when I played and it didn't seem that disc golfers had much interference with other people using the park. Plenty of parking is provided.
Cons: No map at the front of the course. Some signage was in rough condition. One or two baskets weren't quite put in level. Navigation could be tricky for a first timer; I had a local to show me through the course. A few holes sit close to the road and one or two are close to the highway. There's no danger of throwing on the highway, but the noise could be distracting or undesirable for some players. Not much to complain about frankly
Other Thoughts: This course is well designed, well kept, and a lot of fun. Aside from a few minor setbacks, this is a really solid course. It has plenty of challenge for experienced players to work on their chops without being too frustrating for beginners. Easily accessible from downtown for a round after work. Knovillites are spoiled to have Morningside Park as their home course.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Solid Intermediate Course
Pros: Intermediate level course set just outside of downtown Knoxville.
Baskets - 18 grippy discatchers. They were easy to see. There is a practice basket as well at the bottom of the hill near the pavilion.
Tees - 1 large concrete tee per hole. They are shaped like a trapezoid with the wider end towards the end of the tee pad to allow you to throw in different angles if needed.
Signs - Billboard had info on disc golf but did not have a map. The signs for the holes were great. Showed distances, par, and a map. A few signs pointed you towards the next tee (7, 14, 16).
Variety - Course was very spread out and had some sort of elevation on every hole except 5 and 17. A few of the baskets were placed on hills to add elevation to the holes. Every hole had mature trees to shape the line. 2 and 14 had a thread the needle type of shot. A few holes had a small creek run through it but it was literally a few inches deep. No two holes were the same. A few blind shots due to elevation. 11 and 18 had extreme elevation.
Nice scenic park that had a view of the skyline from hole 12.
A port o potty and some trash cans after hole 4.
Playground on site.
Benches after hole 1 and 4 as well at the tee for 7.
Trash can after hole 4.
Peaceful park with some cool features (statue, paths, etc).
Cons: Course needs signs pointing you towards the next tee. Navigation can be tricky for a first timer, especially after the following holes (2, 4, 6, 10, 13, and 17).
Broken glass throughout the course on the ground.
Ground can be very soggy and muddy after rain. Leaves the tees to be slick as well as the walk uphill on 11 and 18.
Needs a course map at the billboard showing the course as well as the location of the practice basket.
Could use a few trash cans. Trash throughout course.
Walking path can cause delays if course is busy.
Other Thoughts: This is a great course. Most holes were reachable within 2 shots with the right throw. Plenty of obstacles to shape lines that can make or break your day. It was slick, soggy, and muddy when I played but I still enjoyed myself.
The elevation and the variety helped me to enjoy this course.
Would definitely recommend if in the area or passing through like I was. It is right off the highway.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
My Favorite Course in Knoxville
Pros: *Excellent course design with lots of opportunities for power drives and challenging elevation shots
*A tournament favorite, so the course itself gets lots of love from the city and from KDGA.
* Convenient to most parts of inner-city Knoxville, so its possible to hop over for a couple of quick holes on a lunch break at work.
*One of the most challenging courses in the area
*Peaceful and relatively quiet during off season/off hours
Cons: *Most shots are situated facing to the West, so there is significant glare playing in the afternoons.
*High traffic on weekends and afternoons with good weather, so lots of waiting to play through.
*Not in the best part of town, so playing there alone or in small groups requires some situational awareness - particularly towards dusk (never had any problems personally, however).
* The divided layout requires lots of walking and adds time waiting for other groups to play through, and since its a multi-use park, you have to be cognizant of pedestrians walking through.
Other Thoughts: Love this course! Its convenient and fun to play - quite challenging. Its definitely in a more urban environment, and you'll see some grit, but nothing that isn't prevalent in other inner-city disc golf parks around the country. For both traffic and lighting reasons, I prefer to play here in the mornings when there aren't many other people out. Though the park itself can be somewhat trashy, KDGA does an excellent job maintaining the course. Its a tournament-favorite, so you will notice a marked up-tick in traffic as tournament dates approach as folks practice. Bring shades if you play in the afternoon, as the sun can blind you on several shots. It can also be quite crowded on nice days, but I still think its less trafficked than Victor Ashe.
6 Helpful / 3 Not
An amazing course, ruined by the terrible layout
Pros: I am sure that I am going to get "this review isn't helpful" because people disagree with my take on this course. But was it helpful? Did I actually review the course? Yes.
Right off the bat, let me tell you that COULD be one of the best courses that I have ever played. Have as anyone ever dated a super crazy, super attractive person? Morningside is that person. Yes, it's great to look at and it's fun to touch...but it's going to snap for some reason that you can't explain, and someone is going to end with a knife in their face. So...let's bust out the details -
Baskets- Great catching baskets from Innova. No graffiti on any of the chastity belts, no missing chain and all of them caught like a young Carlton Fisk. Props. +1
Tee pads - Every hole had a tee pad that flaired out to give you plenty of room to throw off of. Everything was nice and level, in spite of the incredible elevation changes.
Shot types - Every shot type was represented out there. Long, sweeping anny shots. GIGANTIC down hill bomber throws. Huge uphill shots, both super short, as well as incredibly long. Truly, the variety on this course is astounding. The holes themselves were laid out to make maximum use of the elevation changes. Along those lines, NO BASKET sits on level ground, outside of one or two of them. Everything is a risky up shot and will destroy you if you miss the putt. This was one of my favorite parts of the course. Lots and lots and risk/reward.
Intangibles - The park itself, if you don't look outside of the confines of the course, is very pretty. It's set within a lot of mature trees. I also love that there are a couple of signature holes. 18 goes uphill about 200 feet, on what I think is close to a 60 degree angle. Unreal!
Cons: And this is where I have a feeling that some people are going to not like this review...Sorry guys.
Layout - This is the single WORST course design that I have ever played. It just is. OK, 1-2-3-4 makes sense. Got it. Then...where's five? Ah yes, cross the entire park and then throw down hill. Then you play 6 and walk WAY down the road, and cross a street.
From there, the rest of the course is a mess. fairways are criss crossing. you are throwing on top of other baskets. you are throwing over streets. I do not think that there is ONE hole on this course that doesn't throw over a walking path. Other holes throw across a busy pavilion area, an ultimate Frisbee field, and exercise equipment. Truly, I can't see going back here to play unless it as for a tournament and the rest of the park as shut down. Even then, you are crossing over other holes. Between the walking paths and other sports being played, it was a tough course to play with any sort of tempo.
Also, this course is in not a great neighborhood. There are apartments right on top of a couple of holes, and there are shady characters all over this course. PS, I LOVE hood golf...but this is not a disc friendly place. I would not be there after dark by myself.
Other Thoughts: If I could take this course and put it out in the middle of nowhere, it will literally be one of my favorite courses of all time. But everything counts in a review. And for me, the layout MURDERS this course's review. I hate it when I have to wait to throw on every hole. I hate it when holes are right on top of one another. I hate it when navigation doesn't make sense, and this course has all of those.
Personally, wanted to love this course. But at the end day, it's not a good playing experience. The holes are SO INTERESTING! But there are so many other things going on in the park, and there are so many other people in the way, and the layout is SO terribly bad...Sorry guys.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Plenty of holes where you can let your drive rip. The hilly terrain makes for a nice workout. Intuitive layout and I really enjoyed myself. Would make a great everyday course.
Cons: All the yardage measures were exaggerated. Made for a challenging first round. The advertised views of the river were also exaggerated. Still pretty scenic though.
Other Thoughts: Rewards driving accuracy and caution in the putt/approach game. Most of the course is very uneven terrain and there are major risks of losing strokes when your disc rolls down a hill. I'm not that used to this kind of hazard and I could see it getting frustrating if you get victimized by too many bad rolls.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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