Niles, MI 
Madeline Bertrand Park Share
Uploaded By: DiscChick Hole #16 (Taken 4/2008)
3 / 224ft. Par / Distance:
Hole #16 Tee: The pin is ever so slightly to the right (you can see it) but watch out for those trees.

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That Really Sticks In My Craw!

1    9/6/2017   9/7/2017
Review By: The Valkyrie Kid
Played: 1167  Reviewed: 1115  Exp: 39.4 Years
This review was updated on 9/10/2017
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I remember my mom, aunts, uncles and grandparents using this phrase. I know it means that it pisses you off. I think the craw is part of a chicken's neck. Madeline Bertrand Park made a horrid first impression on me. As I drove up to the little, guard gate, no-one was there. Yeah, free round, right? I found the parking and the start area and I was overwhelmed with all the signs and rules. $100 for having alcohol on the course. Now I would love to have TSA agents stationed at the start of every course telling you have to empty your bottles and cans and think how much cleaner our courses would be. There' a rule for dog walkers. There are notices telling you how big your group can be and to let smaller groups pass. Wow, this place has more rules than Singapore. No spitting on the course! $25 fine for not flushing!

Back to Madeline Bertrand and it's rules. As I was jotting down some course notes, a ranger lady came bounding over and in a not very pleasant way, informed me that I would have to come over to the Ranger Station across the street and pay. Now I had to walk over to my car and get my wallet. Inside the station, lady ranger informed that it would be $3 to park and $4 to play. I felt like I was being gouged here. And then she puts this hospital bracelet thing on me showing I've paid. By now, I'm more than annoyed with this park and their rules. There looks to be a well stocked pro shop here but I wasn't about to give them another dime.

So I start my round ready to hate this course to it's core. The start has a practice basket, kiosk, benches and picnic tables. The first holes are just nice little recreational holes in the 200' range. There are benches and garbage cans at each hole. Nice concrete pads. The baskets are great. My resolve is starting to weaken. I'm OK with the course. Then I get go # 6. It's 305' and the basket is down these wooden steps. OK, nice engineering work here. There are wooden steps all over the place leading down. Wow, I'm impressed. Keep playing and I reach # 12. Very cool 165' but very tight shot to the basket over this gorge. Excellent hole! The next hole has a nice elevated tee pad. I like this course a lot.
Cons: There aren't many but they start with $7 to play. I still think they're gouging the golfers here.

Recreational distances and challenge.

The # 15 pad is not safe from the drives coming from 14. This would be the perfect place to put up a protective screen or build a small wall to protect the tee area.

Too many rules and regulations.
Other Thoughts: After my round was finished, I started talking to the three guys playing behind me when they finished their round. They said they play here all the time and buy a year's pass for play and parking for $60. So it seems much better now knowing that they only gouge us visiting players.

Also in talking to these three players, they had:

1. Never heard of Flip City.
2. Never heard of DGCR.

I'm not sure which of these things amazed me more but by the time I had finished talking to them, they were all three going to join DGCR and they were talking about taking a road trip up to play Flip.

And old Madeline Bertrand got me out of my funk and forced me to join those who are in her corner. I count myself as one of those players now.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

 Stands the test of time.

1    7/3/2015   7/5/2015
Review By: prerube
Played: 250  Reviewed: 222  Exp: 10.4 Years
8 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: I went into this course expecting a lame flat pitch and putt, but was impressed by how much the course has been able to stay relevant with new disc technology. It is still a mostly putter course, but the holes are as good as you can get under 200 feet.

This is a Steady Ed course, play it just for the history.

The fairways are very fair for the distance and the holes are scenic.

Nice tee pads, good flow, and navigation.

Pro shop had a good selection of discs.

They read Apdryva's review and you now get a score card with a map when you pay.

Area around the course was flooded, but the course had no flooding or drainage issues.
Cons: There are 7 holes shorter than 200 feet, which limits the level of challenge.

This is not a tournament caliber course. I saw a doubles tournament sign and thought, "How in the world would that work if I as a mediocre player can get a 2 on half of the holes"

COST. The cost ($4) sounds semi-reasonable, but for a course that is so short $5 to park and $4 to play was a lot for less than an hour of playing. plus my wife and daughter were not allowed to walk the course with me unless they paid an additional $8.

No signage other than distance
Other Thoughts: This course was a blast to play.
One thing I think about after leaving a course. Were there holes exciting enough where I wanted to throw more than one disc, YES
Would I return to this course if I were local? Absolutely, even for $7 (local cost) per round.

Hole Notes:
1. Straight and easy at 180'
2. Right turn with blind basket
3. Right turn near 90 degrees only 202'
4. Right then left S curve 345 feet. Legit par 3
5. Plinko shot 182' slight right.
6. looks longer, but the correct basket is down hill. 303'
7. 189' uphill slight right.
8. 2 or die hole. 152' simple putter hole
9. Narrow 191.
Front 9 as a 900 rated player I shot a 22 with one bogey
10. scenic hole over slight valley 193'.
11. Blind anny shot (RHBH) or RHFH over a hill. 300' Easy 3, but very hard 2.
12. Closest to signature hole. Easy 2 165' over "valley"
13. Long and narrow over valley. Only 376 feet, but it is a legitimate Par 4.
14. Straight, narrow and short 232'
15. 292' narrow dog leg left. quality Par 3
16. 224' multiple fairways for any style of shot.
17. 231' easy birdie
18. 239' Subtle S curve with slight down hill. Easy to end up in brush behind basket. requiring an amazing putt ofr 2 or a simple drop in 3.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful.


5+    6/9/2014   6/9/2014
Review By: Indiana574
Played: 7  Reviewed: 6
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Nice teepads pretty clean. A garbage can at almost every hole. Nice pro shop with a good selection of innova disc
Cons: Some hole are pretty short. Pay to play some ppl don't like this but I have never cared
Other Thoughts: Very nice park threw the woods hole 12 is pretty cool

0 of 3 people found this review helpful.

 a little slice of history

1    3/29/2013   3/29/2013
Review By: apdrvya
Played: 305  Reviewed: 288  Exp: 7.5 Years
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Aesthetic- Course winds through a moderately dense wood and intertwines with a hiking trail. no other activities take place around/near the dg course. Beautiful park.

Teepads- Big, level and pointed in the general direction of the basket. helpful for when signage is missing.

Baskets- mach v and in good repair. grippy, they catch discs nicely.

Routing/Nav- easy easy, the paths are pretty easy to follow and have been followed for years so they are super worn in.
100% signage would help though.

elevation/uniqueness- there are some very unique holes here. #11 comes to mind where it follows the culvert left then right, immediately followed by the little "ravine" shot. Elevation is used fairly well where it is available.

Upkeep/Staff- the upkeep is reasonably nice and the staff is super friendly in the proshop/visitor center.

It's a steady ed course!- nice to play a course designed by the godfather.
Pay to play- I have to agree on this one. if I am paying $11 for two people to throw here, I expect 100% signage or a score card or something to help with navigation

Variety/length- most holes are sub 250' and don't offer a ton of challenge. putter/ mid off of the tee and putt (putt) done.
Other Thoughts: as a piece of history from a different era this is a definite stop for anyone in the area (south bend area) but a destination course, it certainly is not. a very quick play and fun but not much challenge.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.

 Fun for a power lunch

5+    8/8/2012   8/8/2012
Review By: stoltzjl77
Played: 116  Reviewed: 12  Exp: 23.6 Years
This review was updated on 7/25/2013
Pros: Beginner-friendly but requires a variety of shots. Fairways nicely-shaped by woods that can be thick in places to penalize errant tee shots. Course is clean and in decent condition, and while it is missing signs the layout is intuitive for the most part with a nice map on the scorecard in case you get turned around.
Gullies add fun potential elevation changes on some holes.
Decent selection in pro shop - watch for sales as you can get essentially dealer pricing when they are clearing out inventory.
***Updated 2013*** Adding a half-star because somebody did a fantastic job sprucing up the course over the winter - erosion control and new signage added, course looks fantastic!
Cons: Short. Very short. And it is too compact to allow for alternate tees or pin positions to be installed.
Pay to play and park, though the combined annual pass is reasonably-priced - get your money back after 8 or 9 rounds.
Other Thoughts: If I didn't live/work close enough to the park to make the season pass worth it I'd be more upset about paying to play. It really is a nice course and the baskets are in great shape, as are the tee pads.
It is a fun course to play if you can get away for an hour at lunch and sneak in a quick round - no danger of spending more than 30-35 minutes here!

 Get Technical

1    7/26/2012   8/2/2012
Review By: alexjensen
Played: 42  Reviewed: 11  Exp: 9.2 Years
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course was a blast to play and a must play if you are in the area. Though fairly short, this course is very technical and offers a variety of shots. Every hole is fairly tight and offers a variety of lines to get to the hole. Anytime I am wrestling in my bag with what disc to throw I know I'm on an excellent course.

Tons of tree obstacles, but not impossible ones. Clear but challenging lines to just about every pin.

Good pro shop, which I replaced a disc I had lost a few weeks prior at, very reasonable prices. I always enjoy getting a scorecard and course map as well, which they had in the shop for free.

I elected to bring the majority of my bag out on this course, which I was glad for. You will literally need to throw every midrange and putter you have in your bag to play this course. As stated before, a driver is not incredibly necessary if you can bomb a midrange over 300, but I used every disc in my bag on this course.

It is very well trimmed so there isn't too much worries about loosing a disc. Everything off the main lines is pretty clear, and there is enough traffic to pack all the thick brush down.

I play with my girlfriend who throws around 200. This course was awesome for the two of us to play because we could stay competitive without the length giving me an unfair advantage.
Cons: It costs $4 to play, but it's totally worth it. I wouldn't say the length is a con because I'm a fan of the shorter more technical courses.

Don't bring a new player here as it's way too technical for someone that is just starting to have fun at.

You're not allowed to drink on the course, but I did and didn't get in any trouble for it. There are plenty of garbage cans too toss the empties.

The course wasn't super well marked, but the trails are clear enough to understand where to go. I had to run up multiple holes to find out where the pin was. This was slightly annoying as I really appreciate a good hole map at the beginning of every hole.This is my biggest con of the course.
Other Thoughts: Way too fun not to play if you're in the area. As long as you're with a group of players willing to throw the technical courses you will have a blast.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.

 Decent short course

1    7/15/2012   7/15/2012
Review By: cmchavis
Played: 25  Reviewed: 12  Exp: 35.7 Years
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course was put in in 1985 and it shows. The course and the hole lengths in general are, by today's standards, short. The longest hole is 376' and the entire course length is 4240' but despite the length, the course is fun to play. Lending to this - the course has a nice variety of tree obstacles, hole variety and is well maintained.

The standard amenities are present - concrete tees, a practice basket, benches, etc. An Eagle Scout's project was to add benches and there is a bench available at each hole which is nice and they get used because this course gets busy.

The pro shop has pencils and scorecards available. back of the scorecard has a course map, but the course is well laid out and doesn't really need a map. There were only two navigational issues we had. First was hole 6 - the basket is offset and if you look straight ahead on the 6 fairway, you see the basket for 7. The basket for 6 is obviously though if you are looking around.The other item was the steps leading up to the 12 tee - at the basket for 11 there are other paths leading away from the basket, so be sure to take the steps up to the next tee and not the path. Simple enough though.

Holes 12 and 13 are pretty cool 'throws over a ravine' type shot. For beginners, the thrill of having to throw over the ravine is pretty cool - although 12 is short, having the elevated tee is cool. Most of the other holes are straight shots - but offer some mid line shaping opportunities.

Saw a few groups of, what I guessed were dads out with their kids playing was pretty cool. My 7 year old threw on a couple holes and did well on a few holes.

Regular restrooms at 1 & 18 by the visitors center.

Cons: I did notice a few missing tee signs, but having the scorecard map available and for most of the holes, you can see the basket from the tee made the tee signs unnecessary.

This is a short course, so it's not a very big con, but the course starts at the parking lot and doesn't return again till 18. The entire course is tree covered, but on a hot one - bring a drink.

As stated above and just about every other review - length. There are 7 holes under 200' for the majority of holes the basket is a straight shot from the tee.

With today's players being able to throw well over the hole length here. There were a couple holes where people were teeing off and throwing into a group that was teeing off on the next hole.
Other Thoughts: The pro shop has a great selection of discs for a decent price which is a nice surprise for a county park. Pay for disc golf at the visitor center - they do take debit with a $5 minimum.

There is a sign posted that no walk-alongs are allowed on the course and that all people on the course must have wrist bands. I took the family and they walked with me without a problem. $4.00 for a wrist band - that allows unlimited play, so play a couple times.

Holes 3, 5 and 18 are the only real right handed hooks on the course - RHBH. So having a highly overstable utility disc helps here for a sidearm throw. As stated in other reviews though - you don't need any high speed distance drivers here. In fact, there isn't any need, at all, for long bombs - the longest hole (376') has a fairly narrow gap straight out from the tee, so having a good straight driver is about all you need here. A stable mid or even a putter will get you through most of the other holes.

Overall a decent little course. Being out of state and only having time to play a single round - I probably wouldn't go back for $9. ($5 parking - $4 DG) but if I had time to play a couple rounds I would stop in and play. If I lived close I'd get the pass to work on my short game.

This is probably a 2.5 course, but it's fun and quick, so it gets the bump up.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.

 Fun course

1    8/28/2011   8/29/2011
Review By: jimmie51
Played: 49  Reviewed: 5  Exp: 7.4 Years
This review was updated on 9/30/2011
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This course is in a nice park and pretty close to town so getting there is simple. The course is well taken care of and was easy to navigate. Short but challenging holes. The course is just plain old fun. Not the most challenging, not too easy, just fun.
Cons: None really. It is a pay to play course but I never have issues paying for a course if you can see the money going back into the park and course and it is here. I would like to see them dropping the pay to play for the younger kids though. Say under 16 or 18 play for free. The price was fair, but alot of kids don't have the funds to be paying every time they want to play a course that is so local to town.
Other Thoughts: Some of the holes have fairly high par ratings. There was a par 5 that I hit a 3 on, and some par 4's that honestly arn't needed for a solid experienced disc golfer. I am no pro by any means, I consider my self to be average and I shot two under and this was the first and only time I've played this course. I would reccommend playing the course if your in the area for no other reason its just fun

0 of 2 people found this review helpful.


1    4/30/2011   5/1/2011
Review By: notapro
Played: 465  Reviewed: 280  Exp: 14.2 Years
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Course is set in a lightly forested area, with some sandy fairways and gentle hills. The disc golf seemed to be well separated from the rest of the park.
- Majority of the holes are in the forest to some extent, with a wide variety of lines present. A lot of them are pretty simple, and open, but the shots vary from hyzer to anhyzer, with a ton of straightish in between. Having a wide variety of shots, especially approach shots, can be extremely useful here (FH, BH, various OH can be handy). Eight holes are at or under 200', but they are pretty diverse. Some medium length holes help to mix things up, which are of similar superclass design.
- Four of the holes are over 300', which so it's not a complete putter course. A few of the shots are pretty tricky, and definitely need a particular line off the tee. There is some rougher terrain/hazards present as well, where saving par isn't a given. Even balance of lefts and rights overall.
- Some protected baskets, which are usually hazards off the tees as well. Most of the greens are pretty fair, but failing to get there can lead to a very tight or blocked approach/putt.
- Some slight elevation changes, with a small ravine to get over on one hole, and a down and left sloped green at the end of a longer one.
- Good tees and baskets. Old school tee signs including random Out of Bounds signs in some rough (I doubt anyone pays attention to these). Navigation is easy with available map and scorecard.
Cons: - Biggest con here, for most players, is the old-school set-up. Hole lengths are extremely short overall, and usually have a free and clear line to the basket. Layout is also smushed together, so today's high speed discs can easily find other fairways and teepads.
- Course can get a little repetitive inside the forest, as the scenery doesn't change that much. There are some gnarly spots, and some sloped areas, but overall it is flat with trees.
Other Thoughts: - I always have a soft spot for some good old-fashioned superclass courses, and this doesn't disappoint. Some longer holes are present as well, which add some real difficulty here and there. Fantastic course for beginners, and a good place to shoot low for developing players. Experienced players know what's in store at a course like this, maybe worth a visit to see some of the tougher holes.
- Pro shop has a decent selection of Innova, and some odds and ends. Take a look when paying.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.

 Nice and Wooded!

5+    11/24/2008   2/16/2009
Review By: mmyersdisc
Played: 14  Reviewed: 14  Exp: 9.2 Years
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Good pro shop, very friendly people! Well groomed course and taken care of. Short holes with trees all around except for a few that have some distance past 300'. Hole #16 has a fun tree obstacle right in front of the teepad that everyone hits at least once! :-) Also a nice place for biking, hiking, and having famly events due to a big outdoor shelter area.
Cons: I find it expensive to play here, 3 dollars to park, 4 to play I think it was? So pile in all of your discing buddies! In the discing season it tends to get kinda crowded with families and such trying to play so takes a little while to complete
Other Thoughts: First tournament was played here and I placed 6th and only had been playing for about 1 month :-). Was about 10 strokes behind someone that had been playing for years! Very good tournament around november I think it was if anyone around the area wants to check it out!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

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