5 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: This course offers what no other course in the area can: elevation changes. Finding itself far enough north to be away from the flatness of the Gulf Coast. I loved the excitement that brought. For this review, I played the white tees.
Holes 1-4 are increasingly challenging and interesting (the increase in challenge continues through 6, but DRAMATICALLY increases after this, more on that later), culminating in a 284ft uphill battle on hole 4.
Hole 9 is also notably pleasant. It is also no coincidence that these are the only holes less than 500'.
Cons: Oh, where to begin... Let's just begin where you start realizing this course has stopped being fun: hole 5. From here on out, you cannot see a basket from the teepad, and will not for several throws, until 9. The length of these holes are absolutely crazy for a wooded course. These holes, 5, 6, 7, and 8, are the sole reason for the low rating. DGCR calls a 2 "Reasonable," and these holes frankly are not. Those holes are the worst designed holes I have ever seen, and in this area I had to think very hard before being able to say that.
I played this course a couple a times before reviewing it to see if it was just me, but even after playing it, I still threw up the wrong fairway on at least one hole.
The rough on this course is no joke. I spent more time looking for discs than I did playing, and ended up just leaving two discs there. On a course where you are being asked to throw 1000+' through the woods, and the fairway takes a bend, you may lose track of a disc's flight. Even if you miraculously manage to not hit any trees. Wear long pants, because you could be 5 feet away from your disc, but unable to reach it without wounding yourself.
Navigation after hole 4 is also a nightmare. DO NOT accept the course map from the park entrance. It does not seem to be for this course. the distances are completely inaccurate, and the tee locations are not where they are on the map.
The tee pads are dirt/mud, signs have no map and minimum info, and the throwing area is full of roots.
Even on the good holes, the fairways are full of trees. At this point, I think you can imagine what that's like. (I love technical courses, and spent my first 3 years playing with only one driver because all the courses I played were short technical wooded courses, and this is not that- this course is just throw and pray, even on the good holes)
Other Thoughts: It is quite frustrating to have such a great first 4 holes which are fun and you can go through pretty quick, to be suddenly crushed by hole 5, and learn that was just the beginning of a gauntlet that makes this 9 hole course take as long to play as an 18er.
If they broke up the holes that are far too long, and used the same space to make smaller holes around 200-350', it may be a 3.5 to 4 rating. it may even be 4.5 if they cleared out a tree here and there, and cleared the all the damn thorny blackberry vines out. I would love to play 15 fun holes instead of 5 fun holes and 4 hell holes.
This was the most difficult review I have ever written, because of how quickly you fall in love with this course on the first few holes. I played this course a few times just to make sure I was being fair, but after spending hours out on this course, I really feel like the unreasonable holes far outweigh the good ones. If you play this course, just play the red tees, they're not AS bad, and some are even pretty good. Have a buddy to spot for you. But unless you're just checking it off your list, or it's the closest thing to you, I wouldn't bother.
EDIT: When you're wondering why the reviews on this course start out at 3.5 and higher, and then go down to 2.5 or lower, there was a course design change and the newer, worse reviews are for the current layout. I don't know why they changed it, and never made a new map, but it seems to be a much worse course now than when it was first built, judging by the reviews (Qikly is usually a spot-on reviewer, and this explains why he rated it a 4 - he is talking about holes that are no longer there)
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Not much fun for newbies
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Beautiful state park, nice employees, lovely walk through the woods to play. Before you read the cons, may I say the design of the course is really nice, but the briars and brambles will force anyone not wanting to lose a disc or two, or three, into not taking any chances with shots, thereby decreasing distance considerably. For those who have a zillions discs, that's probably not an issue, but how will you know where you'll play from?
Cons: For those of us who are, well... accuracy challenged, there is a constant worry of losing discs. The briars and brambles are well-known by those who've already reviewed the course. The distances listed on the T-markers are vastly different from those on the map given to us by the ranger. We couldn't even find the #6 basket, but a couple of the park maintenance people actually went out on their Gator and searched for a while before they found it. Nice people.
Other Thoughts: I guess there's not much that can be done with the briars. I suspect they will still have plenty of teeth in the dead of winter. Someone mentioned a control burn, but as a camper, I sure don't want to be in the adjacent campground during a burn. I doubt that will happen. I think a little better signage would really help on #6 and others. I would love to watch even a par player on this course to see how they do it. This is the only course we've played so far that we really doubt we'll ever get much better, even with plenty of practice. Update 11/1/17: Went back and played two rounds this morning. My opinion (as a newbie) still stands. It's really hard to have fun playing this course. In fact, if this was the first course I'd ever played, I wouldn't have continued playing. That said, I think the more skilled player, who might stay out of the briars, could have a good time. Update 11/2/17 Played once more before packing up, same results: Really nice course, but the briars and brambles will absolutely eat you alive. 1/15/19 update: This course is much more fun during the winter after the vegetation dies out. That said, the briar and brambles will still eat you alive, but losing a disc is much less of a problem. Several baskets only have one T pad, and it seems like the amateur marker is always the one missing. Hole 6 is a killer. I'd love to watch anyone make this one in 4 throws. Update 3/20/19 Well, the winter actually killed off most of the briars and brambles, but it's still really easy to lose a disc. We've found that the only reliable way to play and keep our discs is for one of us to be a spotter and keep a line on discs in the brambles. Otherwise, you'll be looking for a while. So- if you're golfing alone, either be super accurate, or bring a friend.
Update 12/31/19: Well, we went to play today and very quickly realized the course had not only been modified, it has doubled from a 9 basket course to an 18 basket. Good news: 18 baskets. Bad news: still a very rough terrain course and even in the winter, the briars will eat you alive. I played it twice, and it certainly gets better. Whoever did the work- thanks.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
. . . where a rabbit wouldn't go.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: A couple holes on this course have some pretty cool layouts while retaining good difficulty, specifically 4 and 9 from the red tees. Hole 7 is also an interesting and fun hole from both tees, a right turning hole that starts downhill and finishes with a slight uphill approach (depending on drive placement).
The park is very nice with plenty of camping, only $2 to play all day, beaches on the Bogue Chitto River, a splash pad and horse trails.
Cons: Much of the "rough" is actually thick briar or bramble (depending on where you are from) and is largely impassable. When you go off the super long, narrow fairways, you are going to lose discs that you won't want to even look for if you aren't wearing thick pants. This course might be acceptable to play after a control burn (where the forest manager sets fire to all the undergrowth) but the rough kills the fun factor. I kept thinking of a certain Johnny Horton song that was already old when I was a kid about where the British soldiers ran during the Battle of New Orleans. This course is full of that kind of vegetation.
Navigational issues. For example, when you finish 8, you're screwed. There is no clear path to nine and you'd better have decent rough country hiking skills because there are no navigational aids. There is also a conglomeration of holes around a small clearing that are very confusing. And again, there are no navigational aids on the course.
Other typical cons: no permanent tee signs, can't see baskets from tees, no good indication of basket location on tee signs that were present, natural and uneven tees (this will probably get better with more play because there hadn't been enough play to completely wear down vegetation on some tees), long and in some cases unmarked walks between holes (got briefly lost three times).
It's only nine holes but some of the holes are stupid long and several holes are plinko luckfests. You're going to hit trees (and shoot out into impassable rough) because not only are there no defined paths to the basket in some cases (it looks as if very little if any trees were removed for this course), the gaps are very small and the hole might be 800+ feet from the pro tees (and >500 from the red tees). To be fair, the rough isn't that bad on all the holes, just most of them.
There is copious, underutilized elevation surrounding this course that you will have to navigate but don't get to play (it's not severe elevation, after all, this is Louisiana). Elevation, when present is only a minor factor. There appears to have been an attempt to follow some existing trails, so it's difficult to fault layout decisions with the undergrowth issues that were clearly worth avoiding whenever possible.
It's too far away from New Orleans, or even I-12 to make it a worthwhile side trip when Pelican Park is so much easier to get to and so much better and 18 holes, etc.
Other Thoughts: On the day that I visited the course, the course conditions were listed at "Bad" by the course designer due to the condition of the rough. The problem is, I would have called the conditions "Perfect." It was mowed, the course was dry, what more can you ask for? Well, you could ask for a control burn (see above) but the unbelievably miserable rough is a feature of this course and a "condition" that will probably last from mid-May until the first freeze kills the briars (likely to be in late November or December that far south).
It's not easy to find the course in the park so make sure and get directions from the park personnel at the gate. They will give you a map and directions to the course, but it wouldn't be difficult to miss. Frankly, given the part of Louisiana that this course is in, you are probably very unlikely to find any locals playing it.
This is one of four courses that I have played that I just cannot recommend to traveling players. But if you want to bag this course, go in the dead of winter, hope the briars have died back, wear thick pants and play from the short tees. Otherwise just play an extra round at the excellent course at Pelican Park in Mandeville.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Bogue Chitto State Park's DGC had me grinning at first sight. The course's terrain is perfect for disc golf, with rolling hills and dense stretches of pines, and thankfully this potential has been maximized.
Although only 9 holes at present, Bogue Chitto packs a big punch, with ample challenge and wow factor for both your game and your eyes. The land it sits on is just beautiful, and welcomely isolated. The variety is impressive especially given the reduced hole count. There's a great rhythm of alternately manageable and punishing par 4s and 5s and more restrained par 3s with birdie potential, although even the latter can bite you given the woods and the hills. Elevation is significant, and used in a variety of ways, with downhill, uphill, and cross hill shots along with some pin places that capitalize on it. Precision is paramount: course management is key to shooting well here. At the same time, lines are generally fair enough to not discourage you from going for it. Birdie opportunities are often realistic, so aggressive play can reap rewards, keeping things from getting too conservative. This is a challenging course for sure, but not a beat down for intermediate and advanced players (though if you're off that day you'll surely feel it).
There are very few textbook shots here: wrinkles are quite common. Hole 4 is a perfect example of this. A subtle hyzer through thick woods, the descending slope and pin placement (in the right edge of the landing zone, opposite the hyzer's direction) conspire against you. From the long tees, you have to first worry about making it to the window in the woods before you consider the other challenges. All holes have such multiple factors in play, leading to unique, satisfying shots again and again. Shot variety is excellent, and many holes feature multiple lanes, allowing for a variety of approaches to tackling them. There are tangible differences between short tees and longs beyond simply distance: the design for both is well-conceived and well-integrated.
There are some real signature-quality holes. 6 combines an open clearing (from the longs) with some dense pines and a sloping hill to make a birdieable par 4 that is visually arresting. 8 is meant to be the piece de resistance, especially from the longs, which measure in at 925'. It features a challenging series of tight lanes and must-hit landing zones, and a gorgeous approach to a basket set in a clearing. Shots like these - and there are plenty of them - really stick in your mind's eye.
Cons: I find it hard to critique the design itself, probably in part because I'm biased in favor of long, wooded courses. Bogue Chitto's style is in my wheelhouse and I'm thrilled to have such a course in the region, so I'm probably still a bit in the honeymoon phase. But, I like to offer criticism in all my reviews.
I think an argument could be made that some lines could be better defined here, for fear of being too pinbally or too unclear. I'm thinking namely 8 long ,although 6 has some of this as well. The landing zones can be tough to find on such holes, meaning it can take a playthrough or two for the course to start to open up. This is likely in part a product of the course being so new, and associatedly rough around the edges. Still, there are a few shots that seemed less than fully clear to me in how to approach them, due to blind lanes or landing zones, even after having played them a few times. It's not a prevalent issue, but does crop up occasionally.
The course is definitely rough at present. Tees are natural and footing isn't always great. A *ton* of work has gone into clearing the area to be sure, and work is ongoing; it seems like it'll get there. But for the time being it plays rough around the edges.
As stated, I felt like the course's tightness was fair, but it doesn't really relent much. Those who need to air a disc out will need to look elsewhere.
If it isn't already obvious, the course makes for a very poor beginner course. If you can't throw 300' with accuracy (hardly spectacular, but nonetheless requiring some experience) you can't appreciate much of Bogue Chitto's design.
Other Thoughts: There isn't another course like Bogue Chitto in the greater area, both in terms of terrain and play style. Flanacher has the woods but not the hills, and is a bit more brutal in its execution without allowing for the variety of approaches that Bogue Chitto does. I've been pining for a long, challenging, hilly and wooded course that is comfortably drivable from my home in New Orleans, and I'm pumped to find just that in Bogue Chitto. I will definitely make visiting a habit.
There's word that expanding the course to 18 holes is in the cards; I sure do hope it happens. An 18 hole version of Bogue Chitto would be among the best courses in the Gulf region if not the very top, and amongst the best courses I've played, period. If you like wooded environments, higher pars, and a challenging mental game, then this course is for you.
I'd rate par on the short tees at roughly 900-925, and ~1000 on the longs. You'll certainly earn a good score!
10 of 13 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Every hole has elevation change
Pros: Bogue Chitto's disc golf course is contained in an excellent state park that features nice campgrounds, great hiking and horse trails, and a wonderful beach along the Bogue Chitto River.
The course itself is hilly and has nice views of rolling hills covered with pine trees. For those who like longer holes with pars higher than three, this course delivers, with three legitimate par 5s from the long tees and multiple par 4s on both the red and white tees.
I always have a blast playing this course and really appreciate its difficulty and challenge. The course forces players to use shots they usually don't have to use on most of south Louisiana's open and flat courses. I enjoy the isolation and quiet of the course which is only disturbed by the occasional riders on horseback on the trail that winds through the course's footprint, and an occasional car driving along the road that borders holes 1-3.
Cons: Soft dirt tee boxes, while in relatively sandy soil that drain decently, are still dirt. The baskets are DGA Mach 1s that were manufactured in 1983 and originally were installed in Lafreniere Park in Metairie. The rough is quite thorny in many places, and will scratch unprotected skin, although it's a lot more likely to encounter the thorns when playing the long white tees. Only 9 baskets. No bathrooms within walking distance of the course---closest ones that are always open are in the campground between the park entrance and the course.
Other Thoughts: As the designer of this course I can give a brief history of its development and future. The park staff did a great job over the summer of 2014 clearing out the land for the course. While the course still has some thorn bushes now, when the park began clearing it was wall-to-wall thorn bushes in between the tall pine trees. In fact as I flagged the fairways for the course I was so cut up by the end of the day that I had to throw away the clothes I was wearing they were that shredded. As the course gets more play, the thorns will be trampled down. The park loans me their lawnmower and the grass is cut at least once a month. The park would also like to see players camp overnight in the park. So if you make it out, tell the rangers at the entrance you are there to play disc golf!
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 2 Not
Ready To Be Broken In!
Pros: NOTE: This review is written to give other golfers an idea of the current state of this course. This course is still being developed, but is completely playable from start to finish from the Pro Tees. Am Tees were not yet installed on 2 of the 9 holes. I rated this course with that in mind.
This is going to be a beautiful course with tight wooded fairways and plenty of elevation changes. There is tons of shade and protection from the wind with all of the trees. Most holes are freshly cleared providing clean fairways.
This is a very long 9 hole course coming in at 3314 ft. - 4866 ft. depending on tee format totaling up (according to my scorecard) to 2.8 miles. I loved the exercise with the elevation changes.
Hole 2 left me in the brush almost the entire 800'. I couldn't get out of it. I loved this challenge. I spent more time thinking about my shots and studying the layout to try and find my line. I don't always get that with Southeastern Louisiana courses. As a grip it and rip it player, this hole will put you in your place and sets the pace for the rest of the course.
Hole 6 is a little misleading. I drove into the woods from a clearing about 150' from the tree line. Once in the trees I realized I needed to almost turn 75° to the right to start my run at the basket. I didn't grab my Roc until my 3rd throw. There are so many routes to take, but at the same time so many trees to hit. This felt super long, but is dwarfed by holes 2 & 8.
Hole 8 is this course's BEAST. 925' par 5 from the pro tees. None of us parred this hole. This was the most fun. It is great seeing golfers challenged. I recommend this course just for this hole.
Holes you can birdy or CTP:
Really, you could birdy all of them if you can clear the trees. But, the most obvious of holes are 3 & 4.
Hole 3 is uphill and relatively open compared to the rest. This hole is straight uphill, so a nice hyzer can park you within the circle.
Hole 4 is a tunnel shot with a dogleg left before the basket. The hardest part of hole 4 is driving from the pro tees. The tunnel starts about 100' from the tee which can play with your head.
Both of these holes were perfect for making you feel better about yourself after hole 2's 800'.
There are temporary signs with footages and pars at all pro & AM tees. The permanent signs aren't ready yet. Pro tee pads are marked with white bricks and AM pads with red. All baskets are freshly painted with bold black numbers on yellow plates.
Bogue Chitto State Park has a $2 entrance fee. This helps keep the grounds clean and safe. There is ample parking around the meeting center with the first hole viewable from the parking lot. Hole 9's basket is located just 100' from the parking lot allowing you to end your round from where you started.
Cons: There are ruts in some fairways from the machines doing clearing so watch your step and be mindful on your walk up. This should clear up in about a year with steady play. For that reason I couldn't really throw any rollers, yet.
The tee pad on hole 7 is pretty short. Maybe the brush behind it can be taken out so we can get a good walk up.
There aren't any trash cans besides outside of the meeting rooms. Please keep trash with you until your round is complete, so we can keep this course nice. I didn't see any bathrooms either. If the meeting center building is left open, which I doubt, there may be some in there.
Be mindful of the horse trails and of the people on the trails. Some fairways are near the trails, so a disc that gets away from you could land in or near the trail. I didn't have any issues and I was throwing all over the place. It was nice to see people on horses while playing too. Just a reminder to be courteous as their trail was there first.
With this course being so new, there will be a breaking in time. Brush will grow back and some changes may occur to layout after it has been played a few times. One concern I have is that the state park will not upkeep the course. Trash could build up or brush with thorns can over run the fairways.
It is highly recommended to wear good pants and long sleeves, even in the summer months, due to the thorns and brush off the fairway. We had a fun time trying to find discs or even throw out of the brush. the guys with pants and sleeves seemed to manage a lot better than us in shorts and a t-shirt.
For some the Mach I baskets are a con, but I found them to be pretty fair. They spit some discs out but overall for their age they are in great shape!
I really didn't have too many cons for the course itself. Mainly just with amenities.
Other Thoughts: Currently, the course is being sculpted and some clearing is still needed. I think this is going to be a players' course, meaning that the players will be the ones taking care of it more than the park will.
Overall, it was a great workout playing here and I can't wait to get back out there to teach those trees a lesson for getting in the way of 75% of my throws!!!
I have a feeling I will be editing this review when the course gets broken in. I see my cons section getting a lot smaller!
Please be respectful to the course, the sport, and happy throwing!
ALL TEE PADS (PRO & AM) AND TEMPORARY SIGNS HAVE BEEN INSTALLED!
I MENTIONED THAT SOME FAIRWAYS CROSS THE HORSE TRAIL. THEY DO NOT. IT WAS JUST A DIRT ROAD FOR GETTING MACHINERY IN AND OUT. DESIGNATED HORSE TRAILS DO NOT CROSS FAIRWAYS.
6 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.