A Man Has Got To Know His Limitations
3 Helpful / 0 Not
The most fun I've ever had on a course which is primarily open and offers few shot-shaping opportunities.
A course which is primarily open and offers few shot-shaping opportunities.
Course plays along the fairways of a short 9-hole ball golf course, part of a larger ball golf complex. There are two tees and two baskets per hole, so you have some options. The scorecard included a map, which made navigation fairly easy. A variety of elevation changes - a few ups, a few (major) downs, a few extended valleys, and a few flattish.
So, what is "fun" about "a course which is primarily open and offers few shot-shaping opportunities"? In addition to the elevation changes, the primary challenge comes from the location of the baskets ... or, a better way to say it, the speed of the greens combined with nearby out-of-bounds.
Most of the short baskets are located to the side of the ball golf greens Most of the long baskets are located behind the ball golf greens. The NEARBY ball golf greens, sand traps, and a few other locations are out-of-bounds. Also, many of the baskets are either located on a slope, or have a slope near them. So, the challenge comes from needing to throw a certain distance, with only a small delta, while possibly dealing with elevation change and or a fast green.
Number-6 is a good example. While flat, the long basket is about 320' away. The o.b. green in front of it covers the 230'-290' range, and a downslope jungle starts a mere 10' behind the basket at the 330', so your throw has to be in the 290'-330' window, and fairly straight, too (sandtrap to the left, brush to the right). The short basket on this hole is also challenging - not as far (~270'), but has the o.b. green to its right, and the sandtrap to its left, both about the edge of the putting circle away, so you need to land in a ~60' circle from ~270' away.
And that is just an example - each basket will have the green nearby, other o.b., and possibly a slope, along with elevation change, to deal with.
I enjoyed the challenge of needing to decide when to go for it, i.e. driving over the green to the long basket, or trying to park the short basket, or to layup. My first round I went o.b. (on the ball golf green) twice, as my disc just didn't quite make it out the back, which caused me to evaluate before each drive, and some approaches.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
A Valiant Effort
4 Helpful / 0 Not
• Walking on grass is always nice
• New baskets
• Two baskets and tees per hole making for a varied 18
• A decent mix of fairly wide-open shots
• Restrooms/water nearby
• Easy and free parking
• Practice baskets
• No map and unclear navigation
• Tee boxes aren't always obvious in their location nor particularly flat or desirable to throw off of
• Pay to play (Minor quibble, as I'm pretty sure some of this money goes to the course.)
• Very tight layout making for easy backups and constant head-swiveling on where balls and discs are coming from
• There are markers on the ground signifying the tee 'spot' for the front 9 versus back 9. Generally they are color coordinated to the basket. I think Green is the front 9 and Yellow is the back.
• There's one tee (I believe #3) that's buried in the trees on the right. There's a little white sign on the ground pointing you there but it's quite easy to walk past it unnoticed.
• Also, #2 Green is all the way on the left, on the road.
• Do use the pics on this site to aid navigation.
I get excited about any new course but a new one on a golf course always intrigues me because of the (usually) nice conditions and potential layout opportunities. For Lake Chabot, we had a fairly uneven experience on our first visit. Finding the course isn't too difficult although whatever genius decided to run the road right through the middle of the full course next door should be slapped around something fierce. In any event, when you arrive, drive all the way to the back and you'll eventually see the club house on the left and #1 of the disc course on the right, along with a nice practice area. After you park, you'll need to pay the nice person in the club house (pricing varies depending on if you want a one day ($12) or longer pass (I don't recall the price)) and then you're off. Here's where things immediately get interesting as the tee markers aren't what I'd call 'obvious'. You have to be looking for the little green (or yellow for the back) knobbies or markers on the ground to know where to tee off. It's not necessarily right next to the ball golf tee area. What makes this a further challenge is they aren't paved or rubber mats. They're just spots on the ground. The day we were there the ground was still pretty saturated from all the recent storms so teeing off was a bit hit or miss as to getting good footing. However, once you're ready and glance down the fairway, you'll see these beautiful new baskets which are mostly easy to spot, although a couple do require a walk-up to scope the locations. That's when you'll notice that some thought went into their locations. I found the green locations to be fair and a good way to get warmed up, while the yellow locations will challenge your arm strength and shot making capabilities. Most shots are what most might call 'wide open' with the primary challenges being not getting a stroke penalty on the greens or sand traps, however, if you do go off the fairway here, the rough is ROOOOOOUUUUGGH. It is dense forest all around the course with steep drop-offs in several spots. Punishing, if your shot goes astray. We joined with another foursome and they lost three discs and I almost lost one (miraculous that it didn't end up at the bottom of a ravine). So I would say, on the surface, it looks beginner friendly, but that's if you can throw fairly straight with decent distance control. If you spray a bit, I would advise using discs you don't mind losing. With that said, it is a very pleasant place to play a round. Really nice views in a few locations and #4 is a gorgeous 'top of the world' shot that I'd highly advise an overstable disc for. The major rub is that because it's an executive course you get a higher number of beginner golfers which caused major backups all over the place. They also don't quite know the courtesy rules so it was a bit of a mess trying to play through. Really slowed things down, but everyone had good attitudes about it, so that helps. With all that said, we had a fun time out here. The locals were quite friendly. I hear the wind can blow a bit but it was calm the day we were there. You can definitely see the potential in this course but it's definitely rough around the edges currently.
Lake Chabot has some decent potential to really be something special. I don't know that you can solve every issue out here but I would love to see the effort made and would support that effort by returning on a regular basis.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Really Enjoyed the Course!
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: -To make the disc golf course 18 holes, they permanently installed 2 baskets per hole, one Green (short) and one Yellow (long). There are also 2 Tee Pads per hole, also one Green (short) and one Yellow (long). So there are 36 different playable positions ALWAYS when at the course. I played the Green T-Pads to the Green Baskets the first 9 and Green T-Pads to the Yellow baskets the second 9 to make my 18 holes. This is perfect layout for AM arms. I really like that aspect of the course. Every time you go, you know the course will be set up for AM's (or a Pro if desired). I am tired of some clubs setting up courses at ALL Pro Long Distances too often.
-The elevation is mixed, making great lines.
-Tons of trees making it a scenic course.
- Nice practice basket area.
Cons: -It is a bummer they don't allow Golf Carts on the course. I like using golf carts when playing disc golf (like Lava Creek) as a change of pace.
-The T-Pads are dirt. And as most are in the middle of the Ball Golf T-Pads, I don't ever seeing them putting in concrete or rubber either. But the dirt ones were not bad.
-It is the most expensive course I have played at $12 for 18 holes on the weekend. If I lived there, it would be annoying. But as I will only get down there a few times a year, I don't mind at all.
-You do have to get a Tee Time. Calling ahead on weekends is recommended.
-No Tee Signs. Bring their Score Card along if you want to know the distances.
-No driving / warm up field on site or close by.
Other Thoughts: Even though there are only 9 fairways, shooting to the Green baskets one round and the Yellow baskets the second round did provide a "different" feel for each position.
I can't wait to go back.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Nice Addition to the East Bay
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - clean, beautiful and "civilized" setting
- new baskets and good quality teepads
- hilly and requires different types of shots
- tricky putts that could trigger rolling
- easy navigation
- lots of room to air out some big drives
- thoughtfully designed
Cons: - You play the same 9 holes twice but throw at different pins the second time through. Some holes didn't change much on the second pass.
Suffers from the typical problems of playing disc golf on a ball golf course:
- most holes follow the format of: bomb a big drive off the teepad into a big open field. Then approach a lightly guarded basket perched on a hillside at the edge of the fairway. No tunnel shots. Limited number of shots through wooded terrain.
- lots of random OB sprinkled around to attempt to make holes more interesting. I guess that's cool? I'd prefer actual obstacles and hazards
Other Thoughts: Lovely course. Nice baskets, nice earth teepads. Great if you want to air out your big arm. More limited options for those who throw under 275'.
I don't feel like many holes hit that sweet spot where anyone between beginner and advanced would find some fun challenges. The beginner configurations were often plain and easy. Simply throw to a basket ~300ft away across a big open field with a little OB. The advanced configurations tended to be super long and involve long tricky approach shots and death putts. Not the best for an experienced but less advanced player like myself. Good quality but uneven
In summary, this course isn't at the top of my list but it will be added to my regular course rotation. It's worth playing at least a few times.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Wooohooohooo...I Enjoyed This
Pros: What a blast! This is a beautiful course with a lot of exciting play.
First, having two tees and two baskets in each fairway really makes it feel close to a true 18 hole course. It's a nine fairway loop course and you play nine on the green tees/baskets then the same nine on the yellow tees/baskets. The different lengths (usually longer for yellow) and placements (usually more difficult for yellow) mean different strategies and play the second time around.
It is a nice change of pace to play on a groomed course with trim grass. The fairways are clear as you would expect with a ball golf course, but there are still plenty of challenges: doglegs, baskets on slopes, blind shots, baskets in front of drop offs and PLENTY of up and down terrain.
About that terrain...number 4/13 is a gorgeous, top of the world shot with a bird's nest tee and a steep drop to the baskets. The green tee invites big sweeping RHBH hyzers to glide your shot to the basket. And the yellow tee hugs some bushes to the right that take away the hyzer. Was this on purpose? I'd like to think so.
Seems like the whole course is set up by folks that took the time to create challenges like the one mentioned above.
The course is up the hill in southern Oakland so the views are fabulous. Fantastic vistas of Lake Chabot, the bay and the cities that line it. It's beautiful land and it has a little bit of that old country club feel to it.
There is a snack bar and a bar bar. The food is OK, the vibe is pretty relaxed, the buildings are out of the past - in a good way.
This was a huge hit for our whole party.
Cons: You have to pay to play - but not that much, really. If it was my local, the cost would really add up. But this is a course that I'll probably play a few times a year. At that rate, it's REALLY worth the expense.
OB is really dense in some spots. Be prepared to navigate some difficult terrain if you end up in the trees.
Other Thoughts: The course is new and we didn't see many people playing. I suspect it will get busier. I know I'll spread the word because this course is an asset to Bay Area DG.
Tee times are required, which is actually OK. Again, if it was my local, my feeling about this would be different.
It's been an unusually wet winter but the ground was really sloppy/muddy/saturated in spots. I'm sure it will dry up. Until then, be prepared to get muddy.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Pumpin Good Fun!
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 2 basket, 2 tee on an executive 9 hole golf course, a format which it shares with its sister course Emerald Hills across the bay. It allows for 36 unique golf shots if one so desires and a lot of flexibility on how a tourney director chooses to set up for a weekly or pdga sanctioned event.
Some great shots here, but by far my favorite is hole 16, a long dogleg right that is a serious drive for any player. I took a 4 the first time I played it since I went OB on my drive.
Hole 4/13 is going to get a lot of play, as it rightly should, being a severe drop off from the tee.
Lake Chabot is a challenge with some of the pure golf lines, extensive OB, and some good distances on the back 9. The front 9 is a lot easier and many holes are deuce or die.
Great pro shop already selling plastic, but by far the star is the bar and grill set up: nothing like having a cold one after a round AND something decent to eat. I had a burger. It was $8 and came with fries and was perfect. What a huge amenity!
Pricing is also excellent, and certainly a lot cheaper than Emerald as of this writing. Really like the membership offering and this makes it so palatable for the average disc golfer, that I could envision this pricing being copied by dualie courses everywhere.
Serenity: most fairways are separated by a thick row of trees and it feels private and secluded. A really nice setup that is rare in disc golf.
Cons: um, no carts?
Too much OB?
No real tees yet?
Nitpicking here. Basically this course is really fun and clearly worthy of 4 stars out of the gun
Other Thoughts: Scott and Leonard and company did a fine job with the design here and making everyone feel welcome. I can see that there will be many great rounds here, many great events. Lots to look forward to...well done!
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - A good mix of birdie holes and long-bombs, especially with all the different tee/basket combos available.
- Many holes require you to play "golf": aka play smart positional shots instead of throwing for the green every time.
- Food/Bar at the clubhouse.
- OB makes you play smart risk/reward shots.
- Views are spectacular.
Cons: - A few too many open hyzer shots on the Green-to-Green layout.
- Lies close to OB can be hard to call, as stakes marking the the line are spaced out pretty far and it's not clear what the OB line is between stakes.
- Grass tee pads can get muddy and torn up pretty easily. We will see how they hold up long-term, as it's still just opening weekend.
Other Thoughts: - Sharing with golfers was no problem. The serious golfers will be playing the championship level course. There was only 2 golf groups I saw on the par 3 course (where DG is), and there was no issues as they let us play through and were cordial.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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