3 Helpful / 1 Not
Prairie Open '12 Intermediate
Pros: - Some open shots over grassland that lets you actually use some of your fairway or distance drivers
- Some tight wooded holes that require finesse and touch
- Elevated tee pads and baskets add a little more difficulty but makes it more challenging for some players
- Well manicured course and good signage
- Course designed for all types of throws from the tee pads which plays for a versatile round
Cons: - Shorter holes may discourage those looking to dig a little deeper in their bag for distance throws
- Some holes are pretty muddy and have potential for bad mosquitoes once the spring/summer roll around
- Some of the signs appear to be inaccurate in their distance readings
- No mando's- some holes you could enforce them to make it a little bit harder
Other Thoughts: Loved the Prairie Open '12 on March 31st and April 1st this year- great sponsors and coordinators for the event. Both days had a great turn out including many Women and Junior Division players! Some holes had out of bounds but no mando's. I had a great time and look forward to playing this course when I'm in the area!
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Course is set on the large grounds of this college campus, plenty of space for all the holes. Some of the course is a little close to a few roads, and the last few are near a sidewalk by a building. Shouldn't be any interference though.
- Holes are split between prairie and forest, with a few in between. Tall grass and scraggly trees are used to shape fairways in the front portion; some are pretty simple like #1 and #4. Others are tighter like #7 and #16. Wooded holes include some very tight shots, like #6, and more open ones like #14 and #15. A very good range of length and difficulty overall, there are short and long holes both in and out of the woods, tight and open. #10 is a nice 440' bomber from the longs.
- All in all, a good range of hole lengths. Most of the holes in the woods are par 3 design, from either set of tees, ranging from low to high 200'. Bombers out in the open with four over 350', with hazards to worry about.
- Hazards include some water on the right of #10, some nasty jail on #6 and #7, and dense woods in the forest. A very elevated basket on #4 demands an accurate upshot/drive to avoid racking up the putts.
- A few holes have noticeable elevation changes, like a good, long downhill on #10, a super elevated tee on #5, and some slight ups and downs here and there. Helps to add some fun to the course.
- Great signs, tees, and baskets. Navigation is pretty easy, especially with a map. Biggest key is walking across the road to #12.
Cons: - Some holes out in the prairie are pretty straightforward, and don't need a whole lot of line shaping - especially from the shorts. The longs do a good job of forcing some lines, but nothing too crazy overall. Staying out of the grass or avoiding some trees here or there is the key.
- As a whole, the course itself is pretty flat, with a few exceptions. A few holes have a good change, but the majority are slight if anything. Just the flat terrain, can't be helped really.
Other Thoughts: - A very well balanced course, with holes in, out, and next to the woods. Good mix of lines inside the forest, with some pretty tricky ones. Some nice, longer holes out in the open that need some basic lines. While nothing here is extremely exciting, and a lot of it is mostly flat, it is a good challenge with fun. More advanced players will be able to carve it up, everyone else should have to work for good scores.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Rethinking my college choice
Pros: -This course has sweet diversity in its types of hole. With the beginning starting out more open in fields of tall grass with some trees, it progresses into shorter, more wooded holes. Tons of variety in this course.
-It has some sweet special holes. Hole 4's basket is elevated on a small hill of rocks (which make a painful noise when you smack them off the tee or longer upshot!) Hole 5 has an awesome elevated pro tee about 14' up on a raised wooden deck. Of the courses I've played I haven't seen anything like this.
-Almost all the holes have pro tees that serve in not only adding length, but difficulty. Several holes give the illusion of a route, only to punish shots slightly off the intended line.
-Good risk/reward for this whole course.
-I didn't get to play the alternate pin positions, but several showed different feels for the holes.
-The flow of this course is great, super easy to follow. And the signs here are also very good.
Cons: -Some of the beginning holes only have tall grass as the rough, which really isn't too punishing. More experienced players probably won't have too many challenges throughout.
-This course can feel repetitive, straight shots off the tee will get you by on most holes.
Other Thoughts: All in all, a fun course, nothing too exceptional, but it does everything well. It's a good time, well worth the stop if you're in the area.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
attempt to convince myself failed
Pros: Hole #4 pin placement quite nice. Raised bucket surrounded by large boulders makes for nice aesthetic and interesting putt. Nice stairs up one side of this placement.
Hole #5 tee off raised deck. 10' walk up stairs and throw from deck. Also forces high release because of railing you must release over...interesting....
Hole #16 is 277 ft. Interesting thing, is early in the hole you go through a cut out portion of bushes/viney growth. This has been trimmed nicely each and every time I've been here. Makes for another quite unique view.
First four or so holes are somewhat prairie feel. After that, this becomes a fun, technical woods layout.
Two sets of tees.
Two pin placements.
39 holes total between the two courses here!
I am a tomahawk thrower; and this layout does offer opportunities to put this into practice for good result....especially short pins.
Cons: I end up wandering around to find hole #1 every time i come here. Stupid old hippy! But, it is a pain in the a$$.
In the short pin placements, this course borders on a deuce or die track. (Should be noted that the newer Orchid course has attempted to balance this).
As with the Orchid course, the prairie holes here; have the long grass to deal with. Even some of the more wooded portion, forces some play in this type of rough; as some pins end up just outside woods.
Other Thoughts: Paid the $2 parking fee for the first time; this trip. Didn't get a ticket the other times; but, probably a good idea to pay. Then, you don't have to worry.
I have played the original five times now; over a span of years. It's been raining a couple of times; and, even on this journey; it was overcast and pretty windy. So, perhaps this is part of my experience here. Mostly....
I JUST HAVE A HARD TIME BEING VERY EXCITED HERE.
Both courses seem somewhat repetitious to me. I really should enjoy the wooded section of the original. It fits a style I usually like, and the different pin placement possibilities offer a nice challenge. But, I always leave here wondering what I'm not getting; that others seem to enjoy?
The wandering around looking for #1 (though my own fault) bugs the crap out of me.
The shots are pretty interesting; but, if you don't tear it up, score wise, you end up feeling like you left too many shots on the course. A lot of tweener holes I guess. Narrow lanes are difficult on many of them; so, they're not easy; but, at the same time, you feel let down if you don't hit a bunch of them.
There are three unique areas of disc here; from prairie, to wooded, to manicured campus finish; but none are all that spectacular.
There are the three unique holes; and two of these three, I have not seen anywhere else. But, they aren't THAT special.
......I keep trying; but, can't convince myself that UW Parkside original deserves more than a 3 rating.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is a very good course set on some beautiful prairie land with several holes playing through wooded areas. Tight fairways and punishing OB add significant challenge and punishment on most shots.
The course's strongest aspect is the gorgeous land it plays through. The grass fairways were well manicured, and the tall grass OB adds a scenic touch (until you have to dig through it on a bad drive). Most holes have trees at various points on or along the fairway that require some line shaping to avoid.
This course had three really unique holes: #4 throws at an elevated basket surrounded by large rocks, #5 throws from an elevated tee, something I've never seen before, that felt like throwing off a balcony... this adds tree branches as obstacles. Don't even bother with the short tee on this hole, even if you're a beginner. The tee shot from the long tee on #16 was probably my favorite of the course. The shot basically requires you to drive through a window cut out of a large bush.
The signs here are very good... both tees had a sign with the distance for each pin location. The baskets are all in good shape, and the tees pads are excellent. Several holes had benches as well.
Cons: While consistently challenging, the course started to feel repetitive. Many of the prairie shots are straight, or have only slight angles to account for. Those who can keep it straight off the tee may get bored, and those who can't will get frustrated. Because of that, this isn't an ideal course for new players. There is also a lot of potential for lost discs here. Additionally, due to the open nature of the course and area as a whole, it seems like wind will usually be a factor here.
The wooded holes were alright, but nothing memorable. Especially compared to some of the great shots in the open, prairie areas. Due to the rotating pins, we had to walk the fairway on a couple of these wooded shots to find the basket. It would've been helpful if there had been some orange paint/tape, or a flag on these baskets so they were easier to see through all the trees.
For big arms who like to rip it off the tee, there isn't much room here. This is a course that favors accuracy over power
Other Thoughts: This course was a great challenge for me, and my personal experience was fantastic, but for the sake of writing a helpful review for everybody, the length, difficulty, and variety may not appeal to all. I think beginners will find it too difficult and advanced players will find it too easy.
Despite that, I would highly recommend checking out this course regardless of your skill level. The scenery is great, and this course is very well taken care of. For those in the Chicago area, this course is worth a drive up to.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Thick, but Fun
Pros: - Gorgeous half-wooded, half-open course with incredibly thick shule throughout. The natural beauty of the course itself was fairly stunning in places, although that beauty often came with the added risk of losing a disc or two in the sometimes impenetrable rough.
- Outstanding long/short concrete tee placements, including an elevated wooden "deck" style tee on #4.
- Outstanding use of elevation including raised baskets perched atop rocks.
- Outstanding risk/reward. The thickness of the rough greatly encourages taking a conservative approach, and severly but fairly punishes wayward shots.
- Several "thread-the-needle" style holes. Long tee placements increase the difficulty on such holes.
- Alternative pin placements add variety.
- Accurate signs prevent any issues with getting lost. Great flow.
- Free, clean, upkept very well. Trashcans (albeit small) at every hole.
Cons: - Although not incredibly difficult for most experienced players, this course might be intimidating for some beginners due to the rough.
- Insects, poison ivy, and a bit of mud.
Other Thoughts: -I played this course mid-transit between Milwaukee and Chicago. I was pleasantly surprised at not only the stunning mid-Western half-prairie/ half-wooded natural beauty, but also the great variety this course challenges you with. The long tees are outstanding.
- Seriously. In the summer, this course is THICK. Groups of roving disc golfers united in the common purpose of finding wayward discs in the impossibly thick vegetation during my round.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 11 Not
B = Be a little too short
Pros: I am only reviewing the 18 main holes since IMO, the new 9 holes are a completely different course (and are not developed to a point to really be playable).
What I personally like and how this course stacks up in my list of 18 (and more) hole courses:
1) Holes with good risk/reward. Fair, but harsh punishment for bad decisions or execution. == B
(Over half the holes will dole out punishment enough where recovery for par after an errant drive is a real challenge.)
2) Holes that have rewarding birdie opportunities for me. I throw 300' accurately, 360' max. == B-
(Most of the holes are too short to be rewarding. Almost all of the long tees that are over 300' are pushed back to outside of my max D. This makes them not even worth playing as all I can possibly get is a par 3.....or downside bogeys. No added fun or challenge added for me on those.)
3) More wooded than open - lots of variety of shots required caused by hole shape and topography == A-
(Several of the new holes are tight wooded holes....but are too short. There seems to be a good balance of right and left turns a few of which are pretty severe turns that push the limits of disc flight....in a good way!)
4) Natural beauty (Appalachian beauty preferred) and seclusion. == B
(There is a nice mix of prairie feel, wooded feel and the last 3 holes even offer a manicured campus lawn and tree fairways. Only one or two beautiful spots.....and the rest is just ho-hum in the beauty department. Seclusion is surprisingly good for a course on campus. Around 2/3's of the course does allow you to feel like you are getting away from it all for a bit.)
5) Bonus points for multi-throw holes with defined landing zones, good risk/reward and multiple options to play them. == N/A
Other Thoughts: It's all about feeding the addiction, so I ranked this course subjectively based on my own "personal addiction factor". The grades above tell how well the course will draw me back to itself again and again and again. Since I have played a decent number of courses (149 18-hole, 91 9-hole as of late 2009), my hope is that players/explorers who have similar addiction tastes will find my ratings list helpful as they choose courses to play and explore.
I fully expect others with different tastes/philosophies to disagree with me....that's the fun of things here. See my profile for my rating philosophy.
7 of 18 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Great Blend of Holes
Pros: This course is extremely well kept and clean right by a small university. There are two sets of concrete teepads for the majority of the first 18 holes. Just this year there were an extra 9 holes added (no concrete teepads, but at 27 holes what more can you want).
Great signage is present everywhere on this course and if it is your first time playing it is almost impossible to get lost (unless of course you head into the thick rough looking for your beloved disc).
The first few holes on the course are very open but with some heavy rough off to the side that you want to navigate around, or you may very well be searching for your disc a long time. It would be very helpful to send out a spotter in certain holes like these. Due to the more openness of these holes they provided very reachable deuces and some very exciting ace runs.
Hole #4 has to be one of the coolest holes on the course. The basket is placed on top of this mound of boulders/rocks a little over 300 ft straight out from the tee. After your drive, you get to make the decision if you want to go for the birdie putt and risk having your disc roll all the way down the borders, and be left for a tough par to save, or just lay up and easily get par.
Hole #5s long tee is also very interesting. The tee is elevated 10-15ft above the ground with rails along the side so you don't fall off of it after your release. This makes for a very tough drive as you are throwing from about the exact height of a bunch of trees leaves and if you try to go around them to much you will end up in the woods that runs along hole #5s right side. The shorter tee has no elevation and make for a much easier shot.
Many of the wooded holes in this course are not that long, but are very tough because they have extremely narrow fairways. Many people like to tomahawk their drives for these holes. The good tomahawkers usually get somewhere close to the basket and the basket and the ones who aren't so good will be spending some time looking for there discs. I recommend just throwing what you are comfortable with on these types of holes and always making sure you know where the basket is before you throw.
Hole #10 is one of the longest holes from the long tees on the course. The long tee starts out elevated on this hill and the basket plays to a slight right that you have to navigate you drive around some bushes scattered throughout the fairway without getting it lost in the thick rough on the right side of this hole. The short tee is located at the bottom of this hill, still around 300ft from the basket.
After Hole #10 the tougher woods holes come in to play with lots of trees engulfing many of the holes.
Hole #14 produces lots of ace runs from either of the tees as it goes straight through a medium-narrow sized farrow and takes a slight left into the open.Many of these ace runs com for RHBH players. In my 3 rounds I have played at this course. I have seen someone hit the chains and out in 2 of my 3 rounds. Very deuce-able.
Hole #16 plays of a tee that is placed right behind this hedge that makes driving very interesting as it force people to throw much higher than normal or over think some of their drives. Is a relatively short hole only somewhere around 250ft that doglegs to the right.
Hole #17 is also a pretty short hole, but much higher scores are seen on this hole as rolling hills and a tree canopy knock many drives down. I have found that the best approach for this hole is the release a very huge hyzer around everything and it will get somewhere around the basket if it doesn't get knocked down by a tree as it hyzering back.
Cons: There are very few cons on this course. Whenever I have played here the bugs have not been too bad.
You can lose a lot of discs in the rough if your the type of person that stops watching their disc as soon as they realize it's a bad drive.
Other Thoughts: This course is well suited for players of all ages and skill levels. The shorter tees make it still a very exciting course for the younger player, and produce tons of exciting ace runs for the more experienced. The long tees make this course an extremely challenging, while the distance might not seem too far the placement of the long tees and the areas you have to navigate around are key to the toughness of the longer tees.
This course is currently 27 holes. The disc golf club in this area already has plans to add an extra nine, they have the baskets just sitting inside waiting! The only problem is they need to get approval first. Once it is approved look to see UW Parkside as 36 hole course and cement itself as definitely one of the best in Wisconsin, and maybe even in the Midwest region.
If you are in the area you HAVE TO COME AND TRY OUT THIS COURSE. You will not be disappointed, I guarantee it.
There are also nice, clean bathrooms inside the school for use, and they sell new disc golf discs in the student bookstore(although the price is pretty expensive, ($18 for star plus tax is an additional fee).Mostly Innova brand, with all lines of plastic.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
Lots of variety
Pros: The course plays in an area of a college campus that is almost completely devoted to disc golf. The course occasionally comes close to roads and paths, but for the most part feels pretty isolated. There isn't a lot of elevation, but the variety of types of holes mostly makes up for this. There's a great mix of open holes where the wind is the main challenge, and tight wooded holes where accuracy counts.
There are various different lengths of holes, from ace runs to some where if you brave the wind you can air it out a little, especially from the back pads. Depending on the pin settings, there is a great variety of left and right turning shots that force you to use many different shots to score well. Many holes offer different lines that all offer different types of risk/reward decisions, and I like this kind of mental challenge on a course.
There are multiple pin positions on just about every hole on the main 18, and it looked like they often completely changed the hole. There were also dual pads on most of the holes, both nice concrete, and with their own tee signs. The signs were nice, with all the distances and layouts to the various alternate placements.
The area was very well taken care of, with no trash around, and nicely mowed fairways through the prairie grass areas of the course. A lot of work has obviously gone into this course, and it shows. The elevated pin and tee were some really cool added features that gave this course a little something special.
Cons: I'm not a huge fan of prairie grass rough, and there are some holes here where the main risk is losing your disc in tall grass. It doesn't really punish bad shots by costing you strokes, just time and possibly plastic. At least the course isn't all made up of the prairie type holes, but the hole design of just throwing straight ahead and working to stay out of the tall grass doesn't appeal to me.
The last time I played, there were some navigation issues, but apparently that has been resolved with better signage now. Some of the long or super-long tees were overgrown and didn't feel as well maintained, or perhaps just not as well used.
Other Thoughts: This course is a lot of fun to play, and offers something for every kind of player. It's worth the drive to play if you get the chance, though it seems like your best bet is to go on a weekend when parking is easier and classes won't be in session. I think it's awesome that a college campus has such a fantastic course exposing so many people to the sport.
Newer players will likely be frustrated by the difficulty of the course, though the distances are pretty reasonable from the short tees. More experienced players will have fun shooting for birdies from the short tees, and will find some fun challenges from the longs.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 4 Not
Ok at best
-Good Accuracy challenge on some holes
-Well kept signs, pads and baskets
-Nature friendly course playing through tallgrass prairie and large woods
-Alternate tee pads at most holes
-Most holes were extremely easy to lose a disc on, either in tall grass or weeds
-There were Holes with no good path to the basket
-VERY THIN fairways cut out of prairie will make it very hard to find your disc if you don't keep it in
-A lot of short (low 200's) shots through a tunnel of woods which was not that amusing to me.
-I got lost many times trying to figure out where the next tee was.
-I had to feed a parking meter because I could not find any free public parking
Other Thoughts: Playing through a prairie is more frustrating than fun. Still I would say that this course right now is worth the drive within 10 miles
Ways this course could be improved
-Widen prairie fairways, in some cases by a factor of 2
-Control the growth of weedy vegetation
-Make sure every hole has at least one delineated path to the basket
5 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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