4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Excellent shot variety for FL. Up, down, left, right, wide open, partially obstructed, and tight.
Well-manicured. Impossible to lose discs on land. Many discs in water are retrievable.
Plenty of challenge and open air for big throwers.
Plenty of parking in huge lots. Course circles back to the start at 13th tee so you can grab something from the car mid-round if you want.
Cons: Multi-use park with people all over the course in some places. Families with strollers setting up shop near some baskets making holes unplayable and slow dog-walkers creeping along in the fairways.
The gap in difficulty between red and blue is enormous. As an 880-900 rated player who can throw 275 feet, I cruised through the red course in -2 on my first round and -6 on my second round, but I couldn't play a full round of the next level up due to several water carries beyond my range. Red, Blue, and Gold are all appropriately difficult per PDGA guidelines, but the course is missing a true White-level option.
Hard to find your way a few tees on the back 9, though with U-Disc this is not a problem.
Other Thoughts: Well worth the 30-minute drive and I would play here again!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Most elevated shot in South Florida
Pros: (3.767 Rating) The anchor course for the Naples/Fort Myers area. South Floridians need to add Estero to their wish list if they haven't played it yet.
- UNIQUENESS - Far and away my favorite thing with Estero is the variety of the holes. Open and wooded. Up, down and flat. Pocket shots, window shots, moderate tunnel plays, blind baskets, a couple par 4's, very long water clears and bomb-it opportunities. Among the most diverse set of holes I've seen on a south Florida course. It is however missing a par 5 and a true dog-leg.
- ELEVATION - This course is truly blessed to have a 30 foot mound in the heart of the course, and it's used well on 4 holes. Holes (16) and (18), are far and away the most elevated tee shots that I've seen on a permanent South Florida course.
- RAW BEAUTY - A lovely park setting with several picturesque water views. IMO among the top 10 most beautiful courses I've played in Florida (68 Florida courses played as of this review)
- MAINTENANCE - The grounds appeared to be constantly mowed, trimmed and manicured. I don't recall seeing any trash on my visit.
- NAVIGATION - Being blind and solo on my first visit, I had no issues. I took a picture of the course map at hole (1) and it cleared up the few times I questioned my next step.
- CHALLENGING - This is one of those courses that clearly establishes what tees you're going to throw at hole (1). Gold tee (1) is insane, and it clearly signals if you think you're a pro or not. Blue tee (1) is no joke either, and rec players will be wise to travel to the red stakes. The gold tees at Estero are really going the separate the playing field. If you can't throw 400, you'd be best served, sticking to the blues.
- SKILL LEVEL FRIENDLY - Despite the challenge from the gold's, this course is very much skill level friendly to everyone but beginners. The 3 sets of tees really helps in these terms.
- CHARACTER - In addition to the 3 sets of tees, there are a bunch of other nice disc golf amenities. There's a course map and community board. There are concrete tees for blues and gold tee (unfortunately just natural tees with stakes for the red tees. There's also a bunch of tee shading and hole (1/18) hosts a shelter with picnic table. The course however could definitely use a bunch of benches, a practice basket and multiple basket placements.
Cons: There really nothing of substance wrong with Estero other than leaving disc donations.
- DISC LOST OPPORTUNITY - If you decide to play tees above your skill level, you're going to leave behind some plastic. There are a few 300 - 400 foot water clears from the gold tees and the blues requires at least one clear at around 300 feet.
- GATORS - Do not go into the water. The water here is prime gator habitat. This obviously acerbates the disc losing possibilities.
- PROPERTY DAMAGE - There are a couple opportunities here to put one into roads and/or parking lots. Holes (11) and (13) especially put both the parking and the road partially into play with an errant throw.
- WIND - All the elevation shots are mostly void of trees in play. The wind will be a big issue on these holes and wind can also affect a few adjacent holes as well.
Other Thoughts: I promptly favorited this course after playing. It rated right at the border line of a 3.5/4, and it was probably the unexpected elevation that put it over the top. Pun intended. Estero is a solid course top to bottom and it also excels in a few areas as well. Play this course, you'll probably love it.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Not a day at the beach
Pros: It's in Florida and not too far from Ft Myers. Of the four courses in the area it is the best (and I gave it a 2.00. ). For the space they have it is very well designed, meaning they managed to find paths for 18 baskets with minimal intrusion on the rest of the community park. It is maintained properly. Two concrete tees on every basket.
Cons: Unless you have a line of credit with Dick's Sporting goods you will leave Florida with few discs left in your bag. Even the short tees force you into the water. No problem, it is claimed, if you like a challenge. So, the challenge is as follows: make throws 300 feet (almost every time, the baskets NOT near the water are 400 to 500 feet long), perfectly straight (there are baskets with chain link fences, and highways in place of water hazards).
I applaud them for having a course . . . . but I would not go back, and I would discourage anyone who likes to hang on to their favorite discs to skip it (particularly when the rest of the multi use park is being used (they tell me that is always).
Other Thoughts: The reviews here, for higher level players are accurate.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Estero was a surprisingly good course tucked into southwestern Florida. It provides variety, challenge and a whole lot of water. More holes feature lurking lakes than don't and even a conservative estimate would consider four of them to be true carries of real difficulty. Two sets of tees mean that discers can opt to tee off from the water's edge on most carries while thrill seekers can back up to the long tees which distance, obstacles, or both to the drive before the disc even reaches the water. This is definitely a course every experienced player passing through the area should not pass up.
The course is mostly open so bombers will definitely find their chances to let rip, whether over water or land but several of the holes are what I would refer to as semi-wooded, with clumps of trees providing gaps or alleys that force the payer to bend to the course. The long tees sometimes used a well-placed tree to remove a specific line that would be attainable from the short tee. I particularly like the use of short palms to create early gaps off of either tee. But make no mistake, this is a mostly open course and water will be the most formidable obstacle throughout. Those who can make the carries will love the natural flights of their discs over the beauty of the ponds and palms. Those who can't should probably skip this one.
Cons: The course is not for everyone as the long hole-lengths and heavy use of water would not be appropriate for lower level players. Some of the carries are over 250 feet even from the shorts. There are also several points at which non-disc golfers may cross or use parts of the course. A few of the holes are very sketchy in this regard and I would hope that specific points of the trail are not used by non discers.
It appears that the course does not hold water well as there several points where casual water had flooded fairways even when it hadn't rained much recently. You should probably be prepared to walk through some muck and for an occasional disc to disappear in unmarked water.
Other Thoughts: Solid variety. Solid challenge. Easily the best course in this section of the state.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 4 Not
Lots of water!
Pros: Challenging, picturesque, concrete tee pads, baskets in good shape. A little bit of elevation.
Cons: Signage could be greatly improved. Easy to lose a disc if your a beginner or have a wild shot due to proximity of water.
Other Thoughts: Fun course but demands attention to shot placement, very nice park.
2 of 6 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Prepare to Sacrifice a Disc (or two...)
Pros: The designers did a great job of installing 18 challenging holes within this large, multi-use park. More water in play and water carries than any other course I've played, and that adds a real element of interest/risk to the course.
Two very nice concrete tee pads for each hole. I usually play the more advanced tees when I try a course, but I opted for the short tees and am glad that I did. Some of the water carries from the longs are beyond my comfort range, so I'd be bailing out on those.
Though the course is mostly open and flat, the basket placements require careful ranging and shaping of your drive to score well.
From the shorts, holes are mostly in the 250' to 350' range, with two par 4's that run 447' and 546 feet. The long tee jump the "typical" range up to 350' to 450', with the par 4's running 518' and 715'. So if you love to crank out long drives, the "pro" tees will be right up your alley!!
Hole 1 is one of the most intimidating starting holes that I've encountered. The basket is in a narrow strip of land with trees and a fence line on the right and a large pond on the left. I thought I had thrown my drive perfectly, only to have it fade just a bit more than expected and splash right into the pond.
Four ponds are in play on various holes, either with the basket placed near enough to a pond to require care with placement of the drive, or by requiring a water carry on your drive.
Holes 16, 17 and 18 make good use of the one significant hill in the park, giving you one uphill drive and two downhill holes. The finishing hole is a drive from the hilltop to a basket placed right next to a pond. Another hole where too much fade will cost you a disc.
Huge parking lots available, along with restrooms, water, benches, etc.
Cons: The odds are good that you are going to lose a disc here. On the very first hole I threw my drive exactly as I intended, only to see it fade a bit extra and splash into the pond. The water is deep and murky enough that I didn't recover the disc. So bring a couple of discs that you don't mind donating.
No signage, though it sounds like it is in the works. With the excellent map and scorecard available the lack of tee signs wasn't much of an issue for me. But without the map navigation would be challenging for a first time player.
This is a large, heavily utilized public park, and there are plenty of chances for conflicts with park users. On a Monday afternoon I was surprised at how busy the park was. WIth lots of folks walking and jogging the trails and a few family groups kicking soccer balls around I had to wait several times to play holes. The hill with the 16th and 18th tees and the 17th basket was a particularly popular place for kids to be playing around.
Other Thoughts: This was my 87th course played, and had by far the most water in play. The water carries and baskets placed adjacent to ponds are what made this course interesting and different that any other.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Course lay out is fairly easy to follow the first time out. I liked the how some holes were very challenging and some were moderate to easy. The park the course is in is very nice.
Cons: Lost a disc in the water on hole one. I was poking around in the long grass on the edge of the water and I surprised a small alligator. Scared the you know what out of me.
Other Thoughts: I will definitely play the course again when I am back in the area.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Scenic Fun And Challenging
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: A natural beauty, this course plays through a large multi-use park, featuring several lakes, light to moderately wooded fairways, and a large (by SW FL standards) hill with one really fun top of the hill hole to unload your bag on and a scenic downhill hole 18 with water dangerously close on the left.
The course is somewhat easy to navigate, with good pacing and flow.
The holes range from medium length to long and offer up plenty of challenges. (Red tees shorten up the holes considerably and make the water holes more manageable). You probably will use every disc in your bag here.
Most holes have two sets of large size concrete tee pads, that are super grippy, and a red set of tees that are well made with pavers. Tees are marked by wooden posts that have hole #s and distances. Some of the distances seemed off and might not represent new/alt pin placements yet.
Map/scorecards available in the rec center and on the board by hole 1.
Some pavilions with picnic tables provide a few nice places to take a rest.
The park was very clean and well maintained. They were mowing the park on the morning of July 4th on one of our visits.
The course has a huge fun factor.
Cons: There are a couple of longer walks between some holes.
Multi-use park. Care must be taken to avoid throwing at other park users as some of the course is near sidewalks and other park activities.
Other Thoughts: This is by far the best course in the greater Ft Myers area, IMO. The league and parks dept have done a lot of work on this course lately and it shows. The course is in the best shape ever with new basket placements. finished red tees, lots of underbrush cleanout, and other tweaks. This course is hugely popular and can fill up quickly with avid disc golfers!
Warning: Alcohol consumption is strictly forbidden in this park and the park is heavily patrolled.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 4 Not
New and improved
Pros: playing from Pro tees are 7200+ feet Fun long difficult course that focuses on shot shaping and disc placement. Course was designed to use all types of shots forehand and backhand Lots of dangerous water hazards but with executable safe options if player opts to avoid big water shots from the pro tees. With OB's and the few mandos included in the design this course is head and shoulders over any other local course.
Long holes, placement drives and steady up shots this course will make you work for a good score , and the winds change dramatically from morning to afternoon so it plays different from morning to afternoon rounds. all new tee pads are in place.
REDS are marked and are currently grass tees but in process of getting a permanent solution once layout is finalized reds is a fun round not as much water. Hole one red is pro tee to red basket on left Mando still in play.
Cons: If you are a novice or can't throw consistently 300'+ play the RED pads. Hearing people that lose their plastic because they were throwing from pads that are above their skill level is frustrating. The pads are GOLD (pro) Blue (ADV) and Red (Nov). This course will eat your plastic is you throw above your skill level it's really that simple. Know your throw
Other Thoughts: ALL THE PADS ARE POURED! TEE POSTS ARE DONE AND INSTALLED!!!!!
If you lose a disc check with the front desk of the Park office the lakes are raked and ALL plastic found is turned in to the front desk of the park office, bring an ID the person behind the counter will only turn over discs to the person named on the disc. No "I am picking it up for my buddy", allowed
6 of 10 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Demanding of the finest golf shots throughout the course starting with the first throw of the day, over a lake. There are multiple baskets that play over or near the water, giving you that "should I throw it at the basket or play it safe" deliberation when deciding your line. Opportunities to really air one out and a nice mixture of technical lanes moving left to right, right to left, and straight as an arrow. The 'short' tees play much different than the long tees giving this course 36 different looks from the box.
Cons: A lot of chances to lose a disc and once it's gone it's unlikely retrievable, even the 'short' tees play very challenging around the water.
Other Thoughts: The course has recently undergone a renovation by Baxter Frost a local pro/ architect that has obviously put a lot of thought and effort into making this a high standard course.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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