4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This new-in-2013 course makes creative and full use of the space available around Rainy River Community College. It has a nice variety of wooded and moderately open holes, and a good mixture of distances with 4 holes over 420 feet (including the 671-foot eighth hole). This is definitely not a pitch-and-putt course. This course requires a fair number of technical shots, particularly in the latter holes. Water comes into play on 3 holes from the advanced tees, but should be easily traversed by most players under normal conditions.
The baskets are excellent (new Discraft Chainstars).
There is a kiosk at the edge of the parking lot by the first tee with a map of the course layout (newcomers to the course can take a picture with their phone in case they need reference). The signage at both sets of tees is excellent; they show hole maps and distances and seem like they will be very durable.
Though they are natural (grass), the tee pads on the first 8 holes are good, and all 24 pads are well-marked.
The condition of the fairways on the first 8 holes is excellent, and there is no garbage on the course.
Potential for expansion: This course has 12 holes. Most courses in the northern half of Minnesota seem to have 9 holes, and there are yet wooded tracts on this property from which another 6 holes could be carved.
Parking is ample and traffic on the course is fairly low.
Cons: Holes 9-12, though very playable, are still pretty rough; there are a lot of stumps yet to be removed from the fairways and they need to be brought more to grade in places. The tee pads on these final holes need to have some material added and be leveled, too.
There are yet trees in the fairways on the wooded holes (some are pretty big) that should be thinned somewhat. This is especially true on #10 where the red and white fairways intersect.
Some "next tee" signage is needed in a couple of spots on the course.
Should have trash cans at the tees and at least a few benches.
Other Thoughts: There are above average practice facilities here, with a practice football field and a soccer field adjacent to the 6th basket (east parking lot), and a wooded many-laned "challenge hole" to hone your putting skills (under construction as of October 2013).
The eastern and northern edges of this property are shared year-round by dog-walkers who are very friendly (the dogs, too). Also, during the winter the red tee on #9 is out of play as it would interfere with cross-country skiiers' usage of the Manka Trail . Be courteous to them and the dog-walkers--and the dogs, too! They have been utilizing this area for decades.
This is Chris Beyer's first attempt as a designer, and I believe he has done an excellent job with the material with which he has had to work. He continues to be very creative and progressive-minded on this project, and development of a permanent on-site mini-disc course and "Challenge 13" are in the works for the near future.
The combination of the newness of this course and the desire for it to be challenging for players of all abilities may cause holes 9-12 to play a bit tough right now, but it is part of an ongoing process. After all, it is very easy to remove a mature tree, but exceedingly difficult to put it back again.
I've given some allowance to the fact that this course has only been under construction since mid-summer in my rating of the course. I would expect the issues I had with it to be addressed in the next year or so.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Nice baskets, good mix of easier shots and technical shots.
Cons: Last couple holes are a bit rough.
Other Thoughts: The course designer, Chris, did a nice job mixing up the holes making them fun for recreational players, yet quite challenging on other holes. I would have given this a lesser score had it not been such a new course. In the next few years I'd expect holes 10-12 to be well groomed and hopefully a little wider fairways. I will also be looking for some concrete tees. With a little more work this course will be very nice.
3 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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