Bryan Park DGC
12 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: -easy access, well-designed 18 hole course in a multi-use park
-decent flow & navigation, which was nice for a first timer
-tee pads & baskets were clearly marked & in good shape
-great use of the natural features (elevation, trees, water) in the design
Cons: -some of the holes were quite short...#16, in particular, was only @80 feet long
-course layout requires a few janky trips to the next tee, but the course map helped a lot
Other Thoughts: Got out to play Bryan Pk DGC this morning and I'm glad I finally got to play a Virginia course! I really enjoyed my round- nice mix of holes that require virtually every shot in the arsenal, some challenging approaches, and an overall nice course set in a park right in Richmond. Definitely worth a look if you're in the area- and I got to meet one of the course designers as I was finishing my round!
12 of 13 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: "Played from Paver Tee's."
-A combination of tee shots that are downhill, downslope, upslope, open, lightly wooded, large trees, and water holes.
-Approach shots downhill, downslope, upslope, and uphill.
-Some tee shots keep low due to overhanging branches.
-Holes 4, 9, and 11 are some of the highest elevated tee shots I have played. Do not find those around Virginia Beach. No punishing uphill tee shots.
-3 sets of tees, 2 natural, and middle tees paver. I highly recommend playing paver tees, do not worry about distance, most tees are downhill or sloped that should help you with distance. The skip bounce will also help, considering that the grass needed to be mowed, I was surprised how much skip I was getting.
-Arrows on basket pointing to direction of next tee.
-Challenging for Advanced and Intermediated. Beginners and Recreational will have fun.
-From tee 14 to basket 18 very scenic around creek/pond with roar of water over a dam. I rank this stretch 3rd behind Munden Point 7 thru 14 North Landing River, and Waller Mill 5 thru 10 and 18 a lake.
-Hole 9 picturesque with creek and dam in the background ranked 3rd behind Munden Point number 8, and Waller Mill number 18.
Cons: -No tee signs also mean no map and navigation can be difficult. Forward and back tees have hole number stamped on wooden markers. Some Pavers have hole number, distance, and par, but most do not. Those that do the paint has faded that reading them is difficult.
-Even with arrows on basket, navigation is difficult no signs to help. For a first timer on course, you may not see the tee pad until you walk up on it. Number 3 basket arrow was pointed in the wrong direction. Took a few moments to realize it, and from that point on I used a course app for the majority of a round for the first time.
-Forward tees are rutted out, some so deep they could provide ground cover for an infantryman. Back tees not too bad. I will not play the forward tees the way they are now, again highly recommend the pavers.
-4 and 11 share the same hill for downhill tee shots and have a blind Criss cross. Need to keep your eyes peeled as you get ready to walk down the hill.
-With out some type of map or app you're going to have a lot of distance guessing and blind shots to basket. May find yourself out of position.
Other Thoughts: Bryan Park was my first stage of the Greater Richmond Tour De Disc Course. Exchanging course information with those from Richmond visiting a course in my rotation, and those I know local when I asked what course should be my first in the Richmond area, Bryan Park was the first mentioned and it did not disappoint.
For a flat lander course dweller, the elevated tee shots were just epic for me, I could just launch it landing the disc about 75-100 feet past my normal landing area on flat ground. No long punishing uphill holes that I've experience at other courses with elevated tees, but some straight uphill approaches. A few tee shots with campy oak trees to keep the disc low, the elevated and down slope tee shots, and the scenic 14 to 18 part of the course elevated the fun factor to anchor my overall rating at 5. My adjusted rating is based on paver tees, those that play the forward tees may have a different experience.
Having to use a course app for navigation, and the mishap on 3's basket arrow my round took 95 minutes. Bryan Park will be at least a once or twice a year visit and is now in my top 5 for courses.
Notable Basket Placement:
No. 13 Par 3 at 290 feet down slope until about 220 feet, then drops straight to the basket. With short grass can be a roller to the street below. My drive skipped down the hill and out of sight, but ended up in a good position.
No.1 Par 3 at 300 feet elevated tee shot to a basket wedge between two thick oak trees. Fairway slopes right to left into the water. Trees on both sides of fairway. Basket about 60 feet from water including slope.
No. 4 Par 4 at 595 feet the first of an epic tee shot to let it loose. Fairway is lazy dogleg right with an up slope for the approach. Large tree on left about 300 out, on the right smaller trees. Best to keep it to the right and swing back in with the dogleg for approach.
No. 14 Par 3 at 445 feet downhill lazy left and then back up to the right. Heavy large trees all the way down the right and some canopy. Straight ahead about 320 feet are trees, heavy brush and then the creek. Slightly up hill slope to the basket.
No. 16 Par 3 at 245 feet across a pond level flight. C1 is on the edge of water, so you need at least 215 feet. Land behind basket, you have a slight roller into the water putting back to basket.
No. 18 Par 3 at 230 feet back across the water. Only need about 170 to make it across. At that point its straight uphill to the basket on a very hard pack dirt surface. Elevation up is about 20-25 feet. Some canopy to deal with if attacking the basket. Can be a roller back down to the water, the hill is about 55 degrees up. I watched my drive slide back down the hill about 30 feet giving me a putt just outside C1. My putt missed, and did a tabletop coin dance, thankfully it settles down next to the basket and not back down the hill and into the water. There was a man in the water who had already fished out more than a dozen disc.
No. 9 Par 3 at 505 feet. Straight down hill a lazy dogleg right nothing in the fairway except a tree on the left about 230 out, and trees lining the fairway on right. Very scenic background behind 9's basket with the creek and water running over the dam. The basket sits under an oak with canopy and the surface is hard pan dirt and past the green slopes across number 1 fairway and into the water beyond. A hot running disc could make the water. Gazing down from the tee was my first thought this could be a course favorite. I was thrilled to be able to putt for a par from C2 at that distance, I missed.
No. 11 Par 4 at 740 feet is a straight down hill shot with a creek across the fairway about halfway out. From that point a lazy dogleg right straight back up hill. Large tree on the left side of fairway at about 220 feet. The creek is about 30 feet wide, and after crossing it there's heavy large trees all the way up to the basket on the right. Some large trees left center. Some large oaks protect the basket. Need to stay on left side of fairway with tee shot and find a line for the approach. Only big arms are likely to make C1. On the right side of fairway, you will block yourself out to the basket. I blocked myself out on the right and found my way to a double bogey. From the tee is when I knew that Bryan Park would be a course favorite and I still had 7 holes to play.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Beautiful park with large old growth trees, good challenging lay out with what they had to work with
Cons: Lack of tee signs made it hard to navigate and some fairways cross each other
Other Thoughts: This is a fun beautiful course. With 2 tee pads you can make it what you want it to be.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
A mostly open, fun course.
Pros: The course is overall fun. The players that go there are typically pretty friendly. Most holes have multiple choices of shots, never too pigeonholed by tree density, which could be a downside if you really favor forested courses (which I do, but I also really like this course). There are some long, open shots, and some that are more narrow and creative. A couple of fast greens by the water will test your accuracy and approach strategies.
Cons: There are a few water hazards to consider, and on windy days they are just drooling at the mouth to take your favorite discs. They are easy to avoid if you want to play it safe, but if you're feeling brazen just realize it's a likelihood that it will go in the drink with a rogue gust. Hole 15 is kind of short and random, like they just needed to put any hole at that spot, but it's not that bad.
This is kind of a silly one, but when you're driving your car in/out of the park watch out for beginner players who tend to throw a hyzer into the road off of tee 12. I see a disc in the road there every other time.
Just being nit-picky, there aren't posts at the tees and some tees are hard to see, so try to figure out where the hole is. Hole 4 and 11's fairways cross, so be mindful of that.
Other Thoughts: This course is pretty fun. Hole one has a water hazard directly to the left, so if you're throwing RHBH be sure you're warmed up or play it safe. A friend of mine actually starts on hole 2 to make sure he is warmed up before trying hole 1, which is a good call. I've thrown a disc in there by hastily shooting, and the water is a big pond that gets up to 7' deep, so it's not easy to go get your disc. I went in once with trunks to find a disc I lost and couldn't, but found multiple of others' who had the same thing happen to them. So just be mindful. On hole 16 there is a gold tee pad where you don't have to toss over the pond but is hard to find. It's in the corner on the other side of the pond by the road.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 5 Not
Best in Richmond
Pros: I have played here many times over the years in my opinion it's the best course in Richmond..open course with obstacles in a well-maintained park.
Looking at the other reviews there's not much I can say that hasn't already been said so I will focus on the cons a little bit
The blue tees are fantastic
Cons: The yellow tees are just dirt pits.
Mandatory on Hole 2 doesn't really make sense.
Hole 8 is a tweener
Hole 17 is a tweener
3 of 8 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: Nice park setting, pavers on blue tees,it was freshly mowed , overall decent course, would play again when in Richmond,
Cons: Needs better signage directing to next tee,several paint marks on baskets led me astray
Other Thoughts: Water shots were fun play not too much disc loss danger
1 of 8 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Ah Bryan park
Pros: Nice middle (blue) tee pads
Baskets are well kept
Good water from the bathroom sink for water bottles
Big arm shot shaping
Quite a few well maintained soccer fields to warm up or practice on (one of the better places to practice in Richmond)
Map of course posted at hole #1 kiosk.
Washout areas get mulched to help with erosion
Cons: Natural and sometimes not so great long (white) and short (yellow) tee pads.
Occasional person or persons that don't know a disc golf course runs through the park
Navigation can be a little confusing for first time players
Park starting to show some neglect with brier patches and overgrown areas getting larger each year, particularly around 5,6,8,9 and the lake.
Other Thoughts: Not much more to say about Bryan that already hasn't been said. Bryan is a mostly open course and almost all the baskets can be accessed from many angles
If you have consistent 400' power then there are a lot of birdies to be had if you can shape your shots, that power lever is where I really see the course becoming attractive.
300' throwers really don't have to worry too much about a lot of shaping, it's more of an open upshot course for pars, many holes will allow you to have really poor drives and still card a par with a decent upshot. It's not really the type of course that's going to hold you to good accuracy off the tee.
For newer players the openness can be nice and keep the frustration level down but even from the short tees it's going to be long for a beginner.
Unfortunately over the past 8 or so years it looks like some of the upkeep has fallen off. I know a lot of city parks have gone through this so it's not just Bryan but be aware that there are going to be some weed/brier/poison ivy islands and areas around trees that may swallow a disc. Also the left side of hole #17 is a black hole for discs, if in doubt stay right.
I'm happy to have it as a home course and place to go practice on the soccer fields. The course is right off 95 (couple holes even visible from the interstate) so if you're passing through the area it's definitely worth a stop, afterwards get yourself a good old greasy spoon burger from Roys Big Burger, about a 1/3mi north of the park entrance.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Nice use of elevation
Some length, which is needed because it is very open, so if you have distance on your throws, it becomes pretty easy.
Nice tee pads on the blue tees.
Cons: Marking is terrible... you definitely need a map to navigate. Anything would be good but there really is nothing. Even just paint the spokes on the baskets would help! Fortunately our UDisk map worked well for finding tees.
No signage so you have no idea of distance and par, and even when standing on the tee it is tough to find what you are shooting at on some holes.
A couple of fairways cross over which is not great.
Other Thoughts: It's a nice park and the course is probably fun if you play it a lot... be we just didn't like it that much after the first time.
We played the yellow tees which eliminate most of the water hazards. Really except for 18 there is little water from the yellow/gold pads except a few shots over creeks. for most holes, there is not that much difference between the pads.
4 of 7 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Good Variety of Challenges. Typical Mixed Use Issues
Pros: Good variety, with a lot of wide open fairways, some slightly more technical holes, and water in play on several holes. The paver tee boxes (usually only on one distance/hole) are nicely done.
Cons: You have to be very aware of the mixed-use nature of the park, because often the non-DG crowd is completely unaware. Hole 9 can be a real circus in this respect.
The two holes that go across water (16 and 18) are often left unplayable because someone is fishing.
For the front nine especially. if you don't have a big arm, some of the holes are tough to reach(hole 2 and especially 3 come to mind as par 3s, and hole 4 as a par 4). I don't consider this a negative; I just keep it in mind and try to manage the course and have patience.
Signage leaves a little to be desired. I played three rounds there before I had it completely figured out.
Other Thoughts: A "nice to have" would be more than one paved tee box per hole.
I like to warm up by throwing in the field next to the tennis courts before playing. It's usually pretty empty, with the rare exception of Saturday afternoons when the Greater Richmond Cricket club is there.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: -Takes advantage of elevation on almost every hole
-Takes advantage of some great over water shots, but won't lose your disc if you can easily throw over 150.
-Beautiful clean course with great scenery
-Fairly well marked and easy to navigate
-Tee pads were solid
-Great distance open shots
-My favorite course I've ever played
-Free and easy parking
Cons: -If anything it doesn't challege all of your shots off the tee. Most of the time you can throw whatever you want as long as it goes really far.
-I only had to throw one or maybe two forehand shots the entire round
-Distance wasn't marked on some holes
Other Thoughts: You will not be disappointed if you go play this course. It is awesome.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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