14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Leister Park is located in the middle of the town of Hampstead, Maryland, only a few minutes drive outside of Westminster. The park hosts runners and walkers as well as a small playground for children near the parking lot. Though it initially doesn't look ideal for an interesting disc golf course, the woods on the property provide a surprisingly enjoyable experience.
The course boasts expected characteristics of high-grade courses: cement teepads, colorful tee signs with small maps showing the expected lines, and yellow DISCatcher baskets. Though the course does play near walking paths, they rarely interfere with the disc flight, so walkers shouldn't be in danger.
Though the first two holes begin just beyond the playground area and are quite open, providing an accessible start, holes 3-9 are played mainly in the woods with some challenging but fair lines zig-zagging through the trees. Probably the signature hole, hole #3 starts in the open and throws through a large gap down 430 feet to a sloped green. The line is specific, but quite accessible and a fun challenge after the first two open holes.
After this, the course weaves through the trees before finishing back near the #3 tee. Though you could probably throw BHRH for most of the course, there are plenty of opportunities for FHRH plays. Hole #4 goes up a hill and to the right, so I chose a turnover, but hole #7's ace run was a soft forehand hyzer. I would have loved it more had I not hit the tree in the middle of the fairway! Still, was fairly easy to get up and down for a par.
Navigation is pretty easy on the course as the tees are easy to find (in the winter) and the tee signs are quite visible. I usually enjoy the experience more when I don't have to think much about the layout and can focus on just playing golf.
Cons: Though I enjoyed the course, there are some things that could improve the experience. First, par was a bit daunting for a number of the holes. Holes #2 and #3 are over 400 feet, something that most rec players cannot throw (me included), and hole six was 375, through trees and slightly up hill. Yet still, these holes were listed as par 3's. This is a mistake, especially for newer players. As a general rule, I believe anything over 400 feet should be a par 4 (and over 800 feet a par 5). This is challenging for rec players, but not discouragingly so.
Though the maintenance of the course was not much of an issue for me, there were many thorns throughout the woods. Stay on the fairway or wear long pants. Some are to be expected, but too many and the experience is detrimentally affected. Going through and cleaning up some of the underbrush would be quite helpful.
Lastly, though the navigation was easy, the finish was near hole #3's tee and not hole #1. I still had to walk both hole #1's and hole #2's fairway to get back to my car, though I used the walking path most of the way. Still, designers should try a bit harder to plan ahead for where players finish.
Other Thoughts: I am not likely to give a nine-hole course over 3 points mainly because 18-hole courses are demonstrably better. But this course was quite good. If not for the design issue and the par, I think a 3.0 would be possible. Those factors drop my rating a bit. Still, I quite enjoyed the wooded part, and the fun factor bumps this to a 2.5 for me.
One more thing: Despite what other reviewers have noted, I do not see this course as one well-suited for beginners. Many of the holes are quite long and throwing through trees can be frustrating for someone who has little experience. Intermediate players will find this a fun and challenging play.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Good for beginners and intermediates
Pros: -Good variety of holes
-Beginners are not overwhelmed
-Concrete tees and Discatcher baskets
Cons: -2 words: sticker bushes
-A couple holes are near walking path
-the occasional d**khead with an unleashed dog
Other Thoughts: Updated 5-17-2021 I'm still a beginner, and the course is a good introduction to the sport. Beginners are hunting pars, and as you get better, the birdies should come. The holes in the woods have some thick grass and sticker bushes. I don't react to poison ivy, so that may be a thing. The last two holes have a lot of sticker bushes, and I'm tempted to go there with a machete one day. If you want to play it as 18, you can play 1-9, then 3-9, then easily jump to play either 3-4, 6-7, 8-9.
All holes are par 3
The first hole is open except for a single tree on the left to capture poor throws. The second hole is also open, but adds some length and long grass to the right and now also the left
Then you head to the woods for holes 3-9
Hole 3 is a longish hole that makes you thread your way through the trees. RHBH needs to stay left on the drive
Hole 4 is a short uphill dogleg right. The better player is looking for birdie. The hole opens up of you stay right on you drive
Hole 5 is a fun downhill hole with a split fairway. A committed drive can get near the basket, but even a safe play can yield a par
Hole 6 is a long, narrow hole with a slight dogleg right. In my opinion the most fun hole on the course. A long drive down the left leaves you with a tunnel shot for par. A bad drive makes bogey a good score.
Hole 7 is another short uphill hole. If you can navigate the very narrow drive, it should be an easy par. Better players are looking for birdie.
Hole 8 is relatively flat. Not too narrow. There is a sharp dogleg left for the last 40 ft. If you can chuck a slight right to left 300ft, you'll be looking for birdie. The areas off the fairway are a bit dense with some sharp sticker bushes and ticks.
Hole 9 is an slight uphill dogleg left. The grass and sticker bushes are very dense, so a shot that strays even a little off the fairway could be lost.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Solid 9 Hole
Pros: Two open long holes to start and get arm loose.
Wooded holes are nicely challenging but open enough to locate discs kept close to fairway.
Very nice concrete tee boxes and sign posts on everywhere hole.
New disc catcher baskets with flags make seeing pins easy from distance.
Cons: #2 rough is very tall/overgrown: keep it in the fairway!
Foliage/ ground cover in the woods make a it tough to find discs if you go off fairway.
Only 9 holes.
Other Thoughts: This is a nice little course with a good course layout. I really enjoyed the wooded holes. I think if I had wanted to play 18 I could have easily just thrown my way back from the previous pins since I had the course to myself at 6pm on a Friday. Overall, solid and I would play again.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Good layout, needs grounds maintanence
Pros: Every hole layout was different. Holes were interesting and enjoyable. Woods fairways are tight but plausible. Concrete tees were a bit small, but good surfaces. Fairly good signage, did not get lost even on first playthrough.
Cons: Ground maintenance is not good. Holes had high ground cover even in fairways (except for 1 and 2, where fairways were mowed). More players might be sufficient to beat this down, but as is, there was a risk of disc loss on every hole, even in fairways. Hole ( was worse than the rest, and we abandoned playing it. Poison Ivy in hole 3 woods entry made that tee to hazardous to play off of, and in about 10% of the ground cover on 5 seriously detracts from course pleasure. Enough patches in the rest of course that several disc went into bags for later treatment.
Other Thoughts: Poison Ivy thrives in the Mid Atlantic, and all courses need to protect their players by clearing it. This is a nice course, and the problem is manageable. so needs to be dealt with. I live locally, and may come out later with a gallon of Roundup.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Practice basket. Open space to loosen up.
Hard-to-miss tee signs. Concrete tees.
Tee-1, practice basket a bit near kids' play area.
Baskets a bit high.
Tees too short (8') and a bit narrow (4')
Holes 1-2, possibly 8-9.
While initially open (1-2), the bulk of the course plays in a patch of woods, with throwing lanes, windows, and fairways defined by mid-sized hardwoods, grouped together in various degrees of density.
Wide open holes 1-2 merely serve the purpose of leading you to the wooded-loop formed by holes 3-9. Maintenance could prove to be an issue, as these holes are in an open field. In September, this grass was knee-high; In February, it was low.
Holes 3-7 are where the course shines, requiring a blend of turning, fading, flipping, and flexing shots to navigate the twisting fairways, combined with gentle elevation changes. Are some of the windows (4,7) challenging, or unfair? Are some of the shapes (3,5,6) challenging, or unfair? Play/decide for yourself!
Long and left-turning holes 8-9, while in the woods, are located on the edge, so the undergrowth received plenty of sunlight. In September, knee-high undergrowth made #9 unplayable; In February, it was fine.
It's a bit of a walk from basket-9 to tee-1, so I usually multi-throw on holes 1-2, then loop through 3-9 a few times.
While holes 3 and 6 are probably the toughest, my favourite in number 5. As a RHBH player, I need to bend an overstable disc straight downrange, followed by a sweeping right, followed by a sharp finish to the left to curl back to the basket - a very satisfying feeling when accomplished.
Worth a play. Hopefully 1-2, 8-9 will be well-maintained, and the brush/prickers just off fairways 3-9 will be beat down.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Tees are in. The signs are up. Fairways are clear. The mixture of open and wooded baskets are nice. There is a well placed practice basket to the left of basket 1. Easy navigation.
Plenty of parking. Spacious pavilion with picnic tables. Nice playground for the kids. Spot-A-Pot near the pavilion.
Cons: There are a bunch of brier patches off the fairways. Proceed with caution. The walk back from 9 back to 1 is a hike! I'd like to see "next tee" arrows hanging on the baskets.
No running water.
A few more well placed trash cans would be nice.
Other Thoughts: I feel this is a real nice 9 basket course for beginners. I'm hearing rumors of it being 18 one day. I hope that's true.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Appears to still be under installation
Pros: Fairly easy to navigate even with out signage.
6x6 post mark tees and are easy to spot.
Fairways well cleared and defined.
Good variety of hole types and distance.
Cons: No signage at this time.
Tees not numbered.
Long walk back from hole 9 to parking lot.
Briers off the fairways on many of the woods holes could be troublesome during the summer.
Other Thoughts: Looks like they are still installing the course. The concrete tees look newly installed as well as the 6x6 post next to them. I hope the plan to number these posts and hopefully add signage with hole info. The baskets are all numbers now. The course was easy to navigate though signage would help confirm things. The holes were longer than I might have thought which was nice. Might consider adding a set of shorter beginner tees in the future. Over all a fun play.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: New DISCatcher baskets; mostly isolated from other park activities (very large park). Great new tee signs - navigation is now very easy. Cement tees (although small). Wooded holes (#3 - #9) are a lot of fun - plenty of trees but clear lines to every basket. Good variety of uphill, downhill, and flat. Some left turners and some right turners. Port-a-potty in parking lot. Practice basket.
Cons: Small tees - about 6 feet long by 3 feet wide (heard from a local that they were restricted to a small size). First two holes are wide open - not even a tree in sight. Big hill behind tee #3 is not used as part of the course. #9 basket is far from the first tee (and parking lot).
Other Thoughts: This course has vastly improved from my previous visit. The new tee signs make it very easy to navigate. The only throw over the walking path is from a tee about 30 feet off the path so no danger of hitting walkers. Loved holes 3 through 7 through the woods. First two holes are straight and wide open - no obstacles except distance. Hole 3 plays downhill through the woods; hole 4 slightly uphill; hole 5 downhill again; and hole 6 uphill. Plenty of trees to negotiate but wide enough fairways to shape your lines. Holes 7-9 are flat and still in the woods but with fewer trees and straightforward lines. Yes there is poison ivy off the fairway so stay down the middle.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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