a beauty in the prairie and oak savannah
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Among courses that lack water hazards, this is one of the finest I've played. The high prairie vegetation bordering the fairways serves the role of hazard pretty well. The variety is excellent, with every elevation change (and there are many) contributing differently to the hole design. The course maintenance and mowing was awesome (the pics here on DGCR don't do it justice, it is manicured). If you're in the area, this is a must-play.
The first few holes are sparsely wooded with a few trees creating a well-defined line to hit, and challenging. These are fun par 3 holes reachable with a solid drive for most intermediate or advanced players, a great way to start the round, not requiring max D straight out of the car.
Then the course moves to some open bomber holes that have some excellent use of elevation change, a long downhill run from the tee, then gradually climbing again to the basket. The design of holes 6 (665ft par 4) and 7 (935ft par 5) really rewards 450ft driving distance in order to get partway up the hill. A good 380ft drive still leaves you in the low area of the hole, making that 2nd drive up the hill so much more challenging.
Next is a series of par 3 holes with very significant elevation changes. It's a nice workout climbing up and down. Hole 9 was especially interesting, sharply uphill, then sharply downhill on the approach, not sure I've ever played a hole with both uphill and downhill quite this dramatic on the same hole.
Finally there are several holes that are long par 3s or short par 4s set in beautiful oak savannah as noted in the course description. Oak savannah is an ancient native Iowa ecosystem that has mostly disappeared due to agriculture and development, and I really enjoyed seeing this nice preserve. The elevation changes here are not quite as severe as the previous set of holes, but the elevation is used differently and complements the rest of the course well.
Cons: You're playing across a well-traveled biking/walking path on two holes. One of them has poor visibility and it's good to have a spotter check for bikes. I was afraid one might appear just as I threw.
Hole 2 needs a wider mow near the basket, the only hole where I had any complaint about the mowing. The landing zone is really narrow, which would be OK if you can see it from the tee, but its blind -- better send a spotter on this one.
Other Thoughts: Some sign distances seemed off, as if newer tee pads had been added later, after the original design: From the gold tee, hole 3 is about 380 ft, and hole 5 is about 260. Also, elevation change of 6 and 7 are incorrectly listed here, they are downhill off the tee and uphill to the basket. These are minor issues, doesn't detract from my rating.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
+ Lots of variety in distances.
+ Surprising amount of elevation.
+ Multiple tees for most holes.
+ Variety in holes, 900+ feet to 150 feet technical holes.
+ Course map at the parking lot.
+ Restrooms in a central spot where many holes come together.
+ Well maintained.
+ Big teepads.
- Lots of trees but getting off the fairway is not punishing enough.
- Distance markers but no graphics on the tee signs.
- Not really any risk/reward type holes.
- Layout is mildly confusing if you didn't check the map!
Other Thoughts: This is a classic disc golf course. Long par 5s with some potential trouble. Par 4s that take 2 good shots to get to the green. Par 3s that can be trouble and "should get" par3s as well. Holes have multiple routes for drives. Course also lacks a signature hole. Maybe hole 6 is this after a slew of par 3s and stepping up to a 665 footer with a drop in elevation followed by back up a hill with some guardian bushes.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: This is a challenging course with varying shots. You have a nice mix of very long open holes and shorter wooded holes. White and Gold tees for different skill levels. Well maintained.
Cons: Only con is the lack of tee signs. Which I know is in the works.
Other Thoughts: If you are in the area. This is a must play.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Fun, challenging course!
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: -Nice baskets!
-fun for players of all skill levels
-requires a wide range of shots
-grass well kept and fairways are very nice!
-provides closed in technical holes as well as open bomb shots
-very friendly environment
-challenging but not too terribly hard
-two tee pads for nearly every hole
-pads are painted with par and distance
-lots of fun holes with elevation changes, hyzer shots, trees, tunnel shots and many many more
-overall a very fun and well kept course!
Cons: -easy to lose discs.
-signs could use some updating
-awfully open on the west side of course allowing for heavy amounts of wind
-QR code on course map seems to be broken or not working anymore
Other Thoughts: Overall, it's a very very nice course. Very well kept and the design had a lot of thought put into it. If you're in the area, definitely worth a stop to play a round or two. Or three. Maybe four....
Also, if anyone's in the area, hole six has a lost tie dye champion Valkyrie in the grass to the right about 250 feet down the fairway. If you find it, I'm offering an award. Thanks!
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: I have been waiting for a true disc golf course at the lakes for many years. Okoboji Gold was worth the long wait. If is fantastic! It provides the locals are friendly and helpful. There are good facilities there and easy parking . The locals are friendly and helpful.As an advanced player I found the course challenging and visually Beautiful. A young fawn followed me around my first day there. I have been vacationing or living at the lakes all of my life and now I will get here more often. I will definitely bring more discs in the future. Congratulations Dickinson County, you now have a world class disc golf course to enjoy.
Big shout out to the designer, the maintenance guys, and those responsible for getting this fantastic course installed here in Northern Iowa.
Cons: The only con I can think of is the tall grass flanking most of the fairways. I would list the lack of cement pads as a con however local sources informed me that new pads are going in very soon.
Other Thoughts: There is no doubt that this is a destination course. Local sources told me that the installation of Okoboji Gold has caused a sudden boom in the number of disc golfers in this area. And that my friends is what it is all about. Okoboji Gold is truly an exceptional disc golf course.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Absolutely beautiful course. I love the Oak Savanna with lush grass underneath. Plenty of length for top players, and at the same time a very fair length for beginning players. There are a couple quirky yet unique holes, but some really good straight forward ones as well. I thought it was easy to follow. I think this is easily the best course in NW Iowa and would recommend it even if it was out of the way. This course is exactly why you hire a qualified designer.
Cons: Natural tee pads made for a couple off balance shots, but when concrete goes in this will be one of my favorite courses.
Other Thoughts: ***This course looks much better now than it does in the pictures provided***
Hole 7 is too long for most players, recommend the short tee. Before you tee off on hole 8, walk north on the ridge line and peak at hole 9. It's blind and quite a trek up the hill to see where you are throwing, however the grass was mowed right where you need to throw!
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Best Course in the Area!
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Nice and big sign at the beginning of the course with a general course map
-Concrete tees are excellent
-Tee signs have an interesting look, give distance
-The baskets are new and in good condition.
-Dual tee pads for most holes
-The park is very well maintained. Never had an issue with garbage
-Incredible variety of shots. Some very fun tactical shots in the wooded area, and some incredible open bombers
-Nice elevation in the park
-Challenging course overall, but not unbearable
-The land here was put to really nice use
-You can put all of your discs to good use here
-Holes 6, 7, 8, and 14 are all very fun shots in my opinion
Cons: -Course flow is a bit tricky in some spots. Have to walk a bit to get from one hole to another. It can be challenging to find the next hole sometimes
-Really easy to lose a disc here. Lots of really high grass in the open areas. Helps to have someone spot you
-This course has always been just slightly overgrown for my taste, even in the fairway. Not a huge issue, just nitpicking a bit
-Can get really buggy close to nighttime
Other Thoughts: It never takes that long for me to realize how legitimate this course is each time I play. Just an incredible course in my opinion. A very wide variety of shots and a high amount of fun factor for me. In order for this course to be truly elite, I think it could use some slightly improved signage (which would help with course flow) and just a touch more TLC. With that said, it is still a destination type course that is worth traveling to. I've noticed improvements each of the past few years I've been here, and I hope that trend continues.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Finally, Okoboji discovers our sport
Pros: • Okoboji is a mecca for recreation but it took the region far too long to discover our sport. I have been going to family reunions there for 29 years and for the past seven I have wished there was a legitimate course nearby. When the people there finally put one in, boy, did they ever come through. Nice work.
• Challenging, enjoyable design with many legitimate par-4s, quality par-3s and a titanic-but-reachable par-5.
• This course will make you get your daily exercise.
• Plenty of variation among shots. Hole 9 (up, over, then down into woods) is a kind of hole I have never encountered before.
Cons: • Needs concrete tee pads.
• Could you extra mowing (particularly on right of Hole 7) or a good dose of trampling down the grass.
Other Thoughts: When this course is all done, it ought to be a destination course. Good work, Dickinson County Conservation Board.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Decent Lake Course
Pros: +Nice baskets that are easy to see and catch well.
+Great variety of hole length. There are some pretty long open holes, medium length holes under the oak savannah canopy, and short but tight holes up and down the hill.
+Decent elevation. Some rolling hills in the open and some steep tight holes on the main hill.
+Well maintained park. No garbage anywhere.
+A few ace runs if you hit the right line. Nothing too open or easy though.
+Chuck used all of this park to put these nice 18 holes in. The park isn't as big as I initially thought.
+Disc golf only park- there might be walkers and nature lovers here too but there isn't any infrastructure set up for anyone but disc golfers.
+Nice, serene setting outside of town.
Cons: -Natural pads
-Course flow is weird and signage is needed to correct this. I kept going to the wrong tee. There are mowed paths throughout the course and they often lead in the wrong direction. They might be mowed out for other park users but are very confusing to disc golfers.
-Erosion will be an issue on some of the hill holes with any use.
-Open holes weren't that fun for me.
-Pretty windy, the west side is very open.
Other Thoughts: +Will probably be bumped up to 3.5 with cement pads and better navigation. I think this course will age well.
+This course will probably be slightly higher rated by those with big arms who liked open bomber holes.
+Some holes had a high fun factor for me. They were the medium length lightly wooded holes and the short ones on the hill. The long ones were open and windy and not as enjoyable for me.
+This is the only course worth playing in the lakes area. Stop here for sure if you are in the area.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Nice layout
Trees and grass
Nice hill shots
Great use of multi throwing styles
Cons: Long course
Have to walk around parking lot to play holes in order
Relocating a few holes this would be a great course.
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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