Titles Are Hard, So This Is What You Get
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: UWF has an excellent, recently redesigned 21-hole disc golf course in and around some of the unused zones on campus. The main features of the course are rolling hills and OB. Lots of OB.
A large course map can be found at the tees of holes 1 and 6.
All pars seem fair for the level of course that this is.
More shade than normal for a course of this magnitude. Those who play here in the summer will be grateful.
Three distinct layouts are available. Blue (the shortest), White (middle) and Red (longest). Thirteen holes have three separate tees, four holes all tee from the same spot, and the remaining four holes have two tees. The three tee holes are plenty different for the most part, they don't change the line much, but the distance can vary greatly. All white tees are concrete, most red tees are as well, while most of the blue tees are either a rubber mat or just dirt.
Holes 6-14 can be played as a quick loop, or play them twice, once to the shorts and once to the longs. Yes, eight of these nine holes have two DisCatchers available for play. The shorts are blue banded, while the longs are yellow like the rest of the course.
Now onto the course itself, it has three distinct sections. Holes 1-5, 6-14, and 15-21. Elevation is more prevalent on the first and last sections, while the middle 9 are the more position-based holes with lots more OB.
The density of woods varies throughout the course, moderate woods on 1-5, a bit heavier on 7-11, almost nonexistent on 12-14, then very thick woods forcing specific shots on 15-21. It's not just a roller coaster of hills, the multitude of shots required for the final 7 holes will be the difference between breaking par or not.
Teeing from the first hole, you're greeted by a 300ft uphill followed by a tough to access green. I like the long pin best since you must hit a gap in the right side of a clump of trees since the left side is blocked off. Hole 1 is probably my personal favorite. After that massive elevation challenge, next up is Hole 5, a thread the needle shot off the tee which has OB to the left of the green. The next major elevation shift is at Hole 16 which is a 12ft wide tunnel with an open green at the bottom of the hill. 17, 20, and 21 are on major downslopes where your shot needs to land softly or risk skipping far away from the pin.
OB looms on the middle section, starting right off the bat at Hole 6. The long pin is on an island which is no more than 15ft in depth. Holes 7 through 11 all have one entire side of the fairway that's OB, while 13 and 14 have it behind the pins. Holes 1, 15, and 21 are the only other ones to feature major OB.
Mandos are used well for the most part. Keeping the flight of discs away from parking lots and other fairways.
Several greens are difficult. Hole 13 has thick bushes about 10ft to the left of the yellow pin (perfect landing zone for a backhand, not). Hole 20's basket is mounted on a downslope, so if you go past it at all, you've got a long uphill run to come back. Hole 21 is the same way.
Due to the sandy soil, rain dries out quickly. Played the day after a moderate rain and had one wet spot, which was added dirt for the intramural field. Zero naturally occurring wet spots one day after a rain, that's something I don't get in Kansas City...
Cons: The main con is the long walk from 5 to 6, and from 14 to 15. It's a natural part of being on a college campus and the limited space that comes with that, but the 750+ foot walks both ways are a huge blemish.
The mandos on hole 11 make no sense. There are two stakes forcing you to stay to the left, but A: the short pin is only 180ft long, and B: it would make sense if they were trying to keep the course out of the intramural field... but Hole 12 literally throws across self-same field. Maybe they were trying to make the long pin more difficult?
Not a wide variety of distances. The Red course boasts only one 500+ pin, three 400+ pins, and only two others that scare the 400 mark. Everything else is safely in the 175-350 range.
A few of the signs are missing pin spots. Holes 10 and 11 have long pins that aren't on the signs, while 12 doesn't have its short basket listed.
Holes 18 and 19... ergh. Both sides of the fairway are covered in thick, thorny underbrush that is extremely unpleasant to fish a disc out of. It would be less noticeable except these are the only two holes on the course that have these thick bushes.
Other Thoughts: This course has been through a lot. From Eddie's original design, to the redesign because of the football field, to the newest redesign and upscaling to 21 holes, the course has had plenty of improvement and is definitely worthy of a stop if you're in the Pensacola area.
You'll have to stop by either the Visitors Center or the Campus Police building to get a parking pass. Campus Police are right next to the lot you'll want to park in, so I suggest there.
This is a great course with a lot of multiple tees/baskets to make every round unique if you so desire. With a little more distance variation and those long walks being eliminated (in a fantasy world) this would be an incredibly solid course, but it's still far above the average for a college course. Hats off to the UWF Disc Golf Club for their stellar work. Be sure you have plenty of time and water to fully enjoy this north Florida gem.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Pleasantly Surprising Redesign
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: +redesigned by someone who wanted to create a challenging course, and it's a tough one
+new Innova Pro 28 Discatcher baskets
+3 sets of tees on most of the holes
+medium set of tees is all concrete
+alternate pin placements on several holes
+next tee signs hanging from the baskets
Cons: -biggest con for this course is that holes 6-11 are separated from the rest of the holes by about 2 tenths of a mile. 6-11 are the weaker-designed holes held over from the original design, and might not be worth the long walk there & back to play (we actually played 1-5, walked about 150 feet to hole 12 from there, played through 18, then got in the car and drove to 6's tee--11's basket is close to 6's tee so you can do that to avoid the long walks). When I go back to play here, I'll most likely play the 1-5 then 12-18 loop from the medium tees then play those 12 holes from the long, as these 12 holes are much more fun than 6-11.
-holes 6 through 11 also play through a part of campus with a lot of pedestrian traffic. Hole 9 plays across a soccer field, so be patient in this area or even be prepared to skip a hole or two.
Other Thoughts: I think this course is rated lower than it should be due to it being way way tougher than the average college campus course, and the average college student is a beginner who isn't ready for a challenge yet. It could even be classified on DGCR as "heavily wooded" rather than "moderately wooded" perhaps, as the trees force players to use shots other than the lazy hyzer. The new design is much more challenging and interesting than the original design, and I would rate holes 1-5 and 12-18 as 4 stars if they were their own course--they're that good, with tricky basket placements, some elevation changes, even a nice panoramic view on #14. It's a shame that the course is split though. Holes 6-11 aren't really "bad" holes, but being so far from the bulk of the course and having to deal with the other activities in that area is a let-down compared to the rest of this course. This course is definitely best played on weekends or during breaks in between semesters.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
New Concrete Tees
Pros: (2.452 Rating) (RE-EVALUATED) UWF has had some greatly needed upgrades since my initial review so I took a second look at the numbers based on the information I received March 2018.
- ELEVATION FOR FLORIDA - Compared to the 102 Florida course that I've played as of this review, UWF is well above average for Florida in elevation usage. Hole (1) right out of the gates is at least 30 feet up and the finishing hole is about 25 feet down. A good 3 or 4 more holes introduce as least a 15 feet grade difference. Still however, many parts of the country will consider this course flat.
- SHOT SHAPING - Several holes on the back offer some really challenging lines. The stretch of holes (13-17) is by far the best grouping in these terms. (15) is an up and down blind shot threw a fully wooded tunnel, twisting down and right at the end of the fairway.
- CHALLENGING - About average for what I've played thus far as the red tees on this course will very much challenge intermediate players to break par. So far, for this area, only Gator Links provides a greater challenge IMO. (Note, I haven't played any of the Blue Angel Park courses as of this re-evaluation)
- YELLOW TEES - Newly poured 5 foot by 10 foot concrete tees for the yellow tee layout. These were not there for my initial review.
- SKILL LEVEL FRIENDLY - Twelve holes have three sets of tees and it will very much allow beginners thru intermediate skill levels to enjoy a fair challenge.
- RAW BEAUTY - A touch above average. Several holes are duds out here but starting at about (13) there's a run a very appealing tee shots ending with a nice wooded down shot on (18)
- CHAINS - All the baskets are brand spanking new.
- PARKING - During the summer or weekends I'll suggest parking in lot 'Y'. Lot 'Y' is located right by tee (1) and basket (18).
Cons: In its young state, there are a few issues with this course.
- SAFETY ISSUES - Several holes bring other university amenities, roads and paths into play. I'll mention (10) specifically with plays across a soccer field and has the basket adjacent to a stairway. In addition, lots of paths between buildings in play. This will make playing during school hours very difficult. Probably best played during winter or summer breaks, or on weekends.
- OVERGROWTH - Six or seven holes will be pretty bad during the summer, especially (14-17). Coupled with uneven terrain on these holes making mowing difficult, you can also expect some tall grass in the fairways. The rest of the course is well cut with little overgrowth.
- BITTING FLYS - I must have showed up on the wrong day. Swarms of large biting flies made it unplayable for me on several of the woods holes. I would stand at the tee, disc in hand, swat the first couple, then give up and run down fairway. "S**t, I forgot my bag." This did not affect my score of the course, just don't show up in late July if that's when this awful bug swarms.
- NAVIGATION - Improving, but not there yet. As of January 2018 there's an updated course map on DGCR for the full 18. I have been notified that hole signage is in the works but as it sits as of this re-evaluation the green and red tees are going to be tough to locate as these tees are marked only with a 6 inch high circular cast stone. Second, it will need more directional arrows from the basket to the next tee. I spotted a few at ground level, but why not some at eye level? Baskets are numbered and correct.
- DISCONTINUITY - Major gaps along this layout. The walk between (5) and (6) is 850 feet and the pathway is far from straight. The walk between (11) and (12) is even longer at 1150 feet. Again, be sure and download the updated map.
- CHARACTER - Improved, but still a newer course that lacks most of the character items you'd find at an older established course. No community board, no trash cans, no alternate pin placements or practice basket. There are a couple of benches, and tees are generally shaded. As stated in the Pro comments, great concrete tees for the yellow layout, but the red and green tees are natural and uneven with roots in several instances. Red tee on hole (1) is concrete.
- TIME PLAY - Improved but still not the quickest play for a first timer without a guide. Figure 90 for a solo first timer and 2 1/2 to 3 hours for a four sum to complete a round here.
Other Thoughts: First thought, "Wow! what a great first hole." To only then see a slow deterioration in the quality of the holes. It finishes well in the end however. If your reading this a year from now, it's very likely that this course has improved even more. The course has a bunch of stuff going well for it, but it still needs more capital improvements and volunteer hours to challenge the top area course. A big thanks to UWFOutdoorAdventures for PM'g me the updates for this course. I originally had this course rated at 2.234. Improved navigation and tees added 0.218 points.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times
- multiple tees
- bright numbered baskets
- plenty of elevation variations
- a healthy variety of distances throughout
- some benches
- recently upgraded to 18 holes
- ace runs
- natural tees with unnumbered markers, no distances provided
- missing tees
- not playable when school is in session, too dangerous
- layout is hard to follow, segmented course that lacks directional signs between many holes
- no multiple pin placements
UWF is a mixed bag of sorts. Let me first start off by saying I came here on Sunday of Memorial Day weekend. The campus was a ghost town, not even the visitor center was open. I parked my car at a soccer field parking lot behind and to the left if you're facing basket #1 from the first tee. This is probably a course best left unplayed on weekdays. There's far too much combining of campus pedestrians, buildings and parking lots for this place to be deemed safe if school is in session. Now that that is out of the way, I thought this was quite an interesting course.
Hole #1 starts at the bottom of a hill and has short concrete cylinders marking 3 different natural tee locations. Red tees are longest, then gold, and greens are the shortest. Sometimes green and red markings were missing as I made my way through the course, no colors were numbered and no distances were indicated. This, combined with an outdated map and poor directional signs between holes, made navigation tedious and time consuming. Navigating between #11 & #12 was where I almost gave up and left. Hole #12 is at least a quarter mile away from #11. After finishing hole #11, keep walking to the right, walk along the sidewalk of a major road (Campus Drive?) until you see a basket for #12 in the woods to your left. The rest should be fairly intuitive. The basket for hole #18 finishes near tee #1.
The course itself had a decent mix of distances, elevation, and fairways orientations. Tees were mostly configured in a linear pattern. The last 6 holes redeemed a forgettable safari feel of the middle holes. Luckily, all the baskets were easily visible from the tees and were numerically labeled. I couldn't find any tees for 9 through 11. It would appear that this part of the course is still in flux. Players visiting UWF DGC will defiantly need a lot of time to navigate between holes here. Bring lots of water.
Rating this course if difficult. There's a lot to like about UWF if you can overlook the obvious restrictions, hazards, and poor navigation. It starts off great, then turns into a turd, then got great again before finishing. Clearly, there's a lot more developement that needs to happen here. Players could easliy justify a rating anywhere from .5 to 3 depending on their grading criteria.
Most tees have high quality tee signs, concrete pads from white tees, and 3 holes have been added on the far side of the recreation field.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Busy busy busy
Pros: - it's a course, of course!
- tees marked consistently
- fine variety of shots needed
- challenging holes, for a few reasons
Cons: - it's a college course, of course.
- no bathrooms for visitors that i know of
- no benches/trash cans/signage
- crammed into much of the area
- lots of traffic, be it vehicular or pedestrian.
Other Thoughts: UWF is a great introduction to the sport for students I suppose, but that being said, it's crammed into the campus in such a way that unless you have absolute control of your discs, one needs to be positive that there are no cars or pedestrians nearby for many holes. I'm sure that on certain days of the week/time of year it's a nice, quiet course ,however, on the random Thursday in October that I played it was BUSY.
PRINT THE MAP before you come. It proved critical to navigation.
There are a couple of holes out here that are sweet to look at, but even w/o the inherent hazards of cars/people, they would require surgical precision. My overall impression was that while there are a few holes here that are challenging as hell- maybe even fun- the course is crammed in here. This is especially apparent near Campus Dr. where an errant throw is doomed into potential traffic. On a few other holes the pedestrian traffic can be enough for a smoke break.
While challenging, I found UWF nerve-wracking, and I wouldn't call it a destination course while Gulf Breeze is relatively nearby. If you do come, make sure to find your way to the visitor center for a pass lest you get a ticket/towed.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
First time review from a newbie
Pros: Nice and scenic course
Fun and easy for beginners
Few hazards and mostly clear fairways
Most holes had markers for 3 levels of difficulty
Cons: Some holes are close to the street
One hole (7 I think) was next a drainage ditch. May only be an issue after rain.
Other Thoughts: My first real attempt at a round of dg. My girlfriend, also a first timer, joined me to play. While the first hole or two seemed a bit of a challenge for newbies like us, we improved along the way and the nice weather and course made it feel like a fun hike around the campus while playing.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Good variety
Challenging but not too hard
Great course to learn the game in
Cons: Small concrete tee pads
Couple holes are a little close to the street
Other Thoughts: It's a short course with not too much length but a nice course to learn how to play or begin on. Still a fun course like most.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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