It's All Nice at the Nest!
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Hornets Nest is a course that I have been hearing about since I started browsing this site, and I knew it would be a must play during my trip to Charlotte, even if I only had time to play a few courses.
I'm glad I did. This course is a fan-favorite for many years, and for good reason. With two distinct layouts, this course has stuff for everyone. The Nest layout is the perfect park course, at 6534 feet and a par of 58, the holes average at just around 362 feet. This is a perfect layout for a newer player looking for a challenge or an experienced player looking for a fun round in the park.
Charlotte's Web is another beast. 9015 feet, Par 70. Holes average a touch over 500 feet, and these aren't your open hyzer holes either. These are the S-shaped fairway, double bogey maker holes. The holes that make local pros quiver with fear. This layout is a beast's beast.
This course has excellent tee signs, those shiny yellow discatchers that everybody loves, and some of the best concrete tee pads I've played on. Navigational signs help on the longer walks, and everything here was super well-manicured. Somebody is putting a lot of care into this course and the park as a whole.
While this course isn't set in the mountainous regions of North Carolina, the designer(s) used every hill and valley to create dangerous greens and rolling fairways.
Other than the pond on hole 2, there isn't much opportunity to lose a disc here. The rough is well-groomed, and there aren't many places where the disc will get too far out of sight. This is very helpful when you don't have a spotter, or are having an off-day at the course.
There is a great mix of the tight wooded holes, and the more open ones, something that I picked up on as rare in the Charlotte area. I threw most of my discs in my bag in order to navigate this course, and I still didn't score as well as I would have hoped!
Cons: I think Hornets Nest is one of the best park-style courses to have ever been done. A park course should have the ability to serve every type of player, and this course fits the bill. However, making the perfect park course comes with some cons.
There isn't a hole that would make my dream 18 here. No real downhill bomber holes, the water shot is a putter or midrange, and it's only playable during tournaments for unfortunate, but reasonable, circumstances. For a course this long in total distance, the longest hole is only 727 feet. There wasn't a 1000 footer that a lot of courses at this length have. Just a lot of middle distances.
The wooded shots were a lot of fun, and there were quite a few that I really liked, but some of them were a tad repetitive, forcing a single line down the middle of the fairway. Not that this is a bad thing necessarily, but sometimes I like to think about what line to take when standing on the tee, not just grab the straightest disc in my bag.
Some of the walks from hole to hole were longer than I would usually prefer, but when the walk is to get to another fantastic hole, I really don't mind. Navigation was well-marked, but with this being my third course of the day, I got a little tired.
Some of the holes played close to other park activities, mostly a parking lot or a park road, where cars aren't going over 20 miles an hour. In most places, I don't think this could have been avoided, but I wanted it to be noted. I can also see this place being very busy on a nice day, so backups may happen.
Other Thoughts: I think the course at Hornets Nest Park is one of the best home courses that anybody could have. It's not the most grueling, even if it's super long, it has multiple layouts to create a myriad of courses for a local to play, and allows out-of-towners to pick and choose their favorite shots.
There were a lot of fine holes, and it was a fantastic way to end my day of disc golf. While I didn't think this course was the most challenging, or breathtaking, it was one of the more relaxing and fun rounds I have played in a long while!
To get an experience of both Hornets Nest and Charlotte's Web, I played the 2018 Amateur Worlds layout. I would recommend this to all players who can only play here once.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is a solid course and a local favorite for many reasons. This is a course that will test your accuracy for sure.
The tee pads are more than ample and the signage is very nice giving the player all the needed information.
The flow is logical and the quality of golf lines here are very tasty.
Elevation change is present on several of the holes but not to the point that you feel like you are hiking up the side of a cliff.
Good mix of short, moderate, and longer holes as well as holes that are dog leg right and left.
There are a couple of open holes but pretty technical for the most part. You will need a good solid overall game in order to score well here. Multiple pins locations to keep things from getting stale.
The elevated basket on hole 9 is pretty sweet and from the pad you want to run at it for the ACE but hope it doesn't leave you with the death putt.
Hole 2's pond shot adds a nice pucker factor and you will want to go for it and stick the island.
This course has the IT factor and the quality of golf is here.
Cons: There aren't many and these are a tad nit picky.
Some of the holes might be a bit sloppy after a good solid rain. Hole 8 sits in a bit of low spot and might have some standing water when it rains heavily.
There is a bit of a long walk from 9's basket to 10's tee and from 18 to the parking lot is a tad long as well. Overall not much to complain about.
Other Thoughts: I was lucky enough to finally make it to the Charlotte area for 2018 Am Worlds this summer. I've known that the Charlotte area has many stellar courses to play and Hornets Nest didn't disappoint. This course has a bit of everything and I love the fact that you had to be accurate in order to score well. There are a few holes that you will pull a driver out on like hole 4 and 14 but for the most part using mids and putter to set up the next shot might be the better and smarter play. I played this course on a Sunday afternoon for in a practice round for Worlds and it was busy but not overly crowded.
The course was in phenomenal shape for Worlds and this is a course that I would highly recommend to anyone while there were in the Charlotte area. I really like this course and hope to return and get the chance to play here again. There is a little bit of something for everyone on this awesome course.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Incredible 1-2 punch: Nest + Nevin
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I'm trying to wrap my head about what an amazing 2-course combo Hornets Nest and Nevin are in North Charlotte. Two 4.5-rated courses (in my book), both top 5 in North Carolina on DGCR...and only 5 minutes apart. Incredible.
+ Tremendous course design and hole layouts. Great mix of par 3's, 4's, and 5's. Every shot in your game will be required.
+ I think my favorite distinguishing feature of this track are the greens. They did a fantastic job using elevated baskets, but not in a gimmicky way. You have baskets on hills, elevated on pedestals, stumps. Roll-aways are a great part of the game, in my opinion, as it forces risk/reward decisions and makes putting more difficult (good and necessary components of today's game, in my view).
+ This is a mostly wooded course, I would say, but there are some more open holes. All of the fairways are "fair" -- appropriate fairway widths for their lengths.
+ I love the true par 4's and 5's. You have to throw a good drive to a landing zone, mouth of a fairway, or elbow of a dogleg to have a good chance at an upshot that can reach the great. Great design.
+ The front 9 is more open in the park area of the course. They do a great job using roads as OB on holes that would otherwise be easier than tight, wooded ones. The roads are just interior park roads and not busy, so not a problem for course design. Just make sure the road is clear before throwing.
+ There's not tremendous elevation here, but they use what they have...and create elevation where they can (see comment above about greens and baskets). There are some ridge holes (uphill over a hill and then downhill to the basket), and a couple of slight uphill and slight downhill holes.
+ Good tees, tee signs (with accurate yardage and hole layouts), and baskets.
+ The park and the course are well maintained and clean. It's also a very pretty course, especially the more wooded back 9.
+ This is one of the best short tee / long tee combo courses you will find. "Nest" is the shorter red tees. "Web" is the longer gold tees. I didn't have time to play Web, but it's significantly longer and more difficult than Nest. I'm not sure that it's worthy of the gold label or not. I'll leave that to Advanced and Pro players to decide. It's at least a blue-level course though. I think Nest would be better categorized as a white-level course (intermediate).
Cons: There aren't many, but here are my nit-picks:
- I wouldn't say navigation is a full con. They have lots of helpful red and gold arrows and markers on the course to signify Nest and Web, respectively. But it's still not simple for a first timer. There are some long walks between holes (and a long walk after 18). I was confused by the "W-18" spray-painted on many of the concrete tees before I realized that it signified the Am Worlds '18 layout (which I assume was a hybrid of the Nest and Web layouts). Again, not a major issue, and I'm not really sure how to improve it. Maybe new course map signs at hole 1?
- This also isn't a major con for me, but hole 2 seemed out of place. I think if the island basket could be used all the time, it would be the signature hole. Unfortunately, as it stands now, the concrete tee is suited to the island pin location and there's not a concrete tee for the short, tightly wooded hole location.
Other Thoughts: I've been waiting for a few years for the right time to play Hornets Nest after the redesign (and not living in Charlotte). I finally got my chance and it did not disappoint. I put in Nevin on my GPS, another one of my all-time favorite courses, and it's only 5 minutes away. Amazing. I can believe the density of great courses in Charlotte, overall, but especially these two gems right next to each other. Without a doubt, if you have one afternoon in Charlotte, your plan should be to play these two courses. Period.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
One of the Area's Best
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Beautiful and challenging 18 hole course located in a well-maintained town park. Ample parking in multiple locations and a nice indoor pavilion with clean bathrooms await visitors, along with a wonderfully crafted wooden sign at the entrance to the course itself. An excellent balance of wooded and more open holes. Features two different basic layouts that accommodate most skill levels: the Web (more difficult) and the Nest (shorter, though far from easy). Nice signs and ample sized tee pads at each hole, with good quality Innova Disc Catcher baskets. Navigation is generally very easy from hole to hole with "next tee" arrows spaced throughout the course. Many outstanding holes, including hole 2 (an island green which is as cool as any hole anywhere), hole 9 (a super-high elevated basket) hole 4 (Basket enclosed by a retaining wall above an OB parking lot) hole 5 (featuring a basket perched on a 4x4-enclosed platform above OB entrance road), hole 16 (tee on a rubber fly pad secured to an oversized deck) and hole 17 (a monstrous par 5 from the Web position). Benches and trash cans are plentiful throughout the course.
Cons: Cons are of the nit-picking variety. Some of the walks, specifically from holes 1 to 2 and from holes 9-10, are overly long. Two elevated baskets in a row (three in total) are gimmicks which aren't needed on a course of this quality. Players must be aware of pedestrians and nearby roads/parking lots near some of the holes. No significant elevation to speak of. I'm told the hole 2 island is only used for tournaments, which if true is an absolute shame, such is it's appeal.
Other Thoughts: If Hornets' Nest were located in 95% of the rest of the country, it would be given a 5 star rating by many. It is absolutely as good as Warwick, Nockamixon and Iron Hill- three phenomenal courses here in the Northeast- and comparable to other 5 star venues. But when you're near places like Renaissance and Winthrop, the bar gets raised and the inevitable comparisons get made. Hornets Nest is a wonderfully constructed course; difficult, yet very fair throughout. Despite the challenge of the course, one never feels restricted or overwhelmed here. There is plenty of opportunity for scoring separation- always a plus during tournaments The Web and Nest layouts provide very different looks at many of the holes, avoiding repetition and adding to the overall playing experience.
As with the other courses I was privileged to play during Am Worlds, tremendous care and work have gone into Hornets Nest. The retaining walls, elevated platforms and baskets, and hole 16 tee off deck are just a few of the features not seen at the average course and helps set Hornets Nest apart from other disc golf venues. A must play if in the Charlotte area.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The current incarnation of Hornets Nest pairs an impressive variety of terrain and tree cover with a design that maximizes this variety's impact in creative and just plain fun ways while at the same time providing a heck of a challenge.
The layout is split between thick woods and tree-dotted park lawn, favoring the former but often using the latter as an effective change of pace from one hole to the next or during the course of one hole. Movement between wooded and more open environments is excellently done, lending the course a unique character that constantly rotates the particular brand of challenge it's throwing at you. Transitions into and out of the woods within a single hole are some of the very best I've seen. All this changing of pace helps the strictly wooded holes - which are generally tight with not a lot of shot choice - from feeling overly restrictive.
Hornets Nest sports the full range of technical play with tight lanes, wooded landing zones, must-hit windows, mid-fairway obstacles, varied shot choice, and OB. There are a fantastic mix of hole lengths, pars, and shots.
The more open holes are an effective, well-conceived complement to the more iconic wooded ones. Hole 5 for example sports a mando and tight-ish window off the Web (long) tee, some mid-fairway trees to negotiate, road OB to consider, and a hillside basket to liven up your approach a bit. Being able to uncork a bit of distance on a hole like this while still maintaining an array of technical considerations helps balance out the wooded confines of other holes while not letting up on the challenge and intrigue. Such tempo changes are strategically placed throughout the layout to great effect.
Wooded holes range from short tunnel shots to daunting par 4s and 5s. They favor single-lane holes that dictate particular lines.
The signage here is easily the best I've ever seen and turns what could have been a navigation nightmare into a demonstration of care. Next tee direction is clearly indicated after each hole, and the transition path is marked throughout so that you always know you're on the right track. This takes the guesswork out of what otherwise would have been some dodgy transitions. Hornet's Nest sets the gold standard for course signage.
Parking is plentiful and there is restroom access throughout.
Cons: The wooded lanes in Hornets Nest largely lack options, forcing you on particular lines. Normally I would criticize such wooded holes for not offering a lot of shot choice. At HN however there's so much dynamic movement into and out of the woods that this restrictiveness is quite balanced out. Still worth being aware that you'll be throwing a lot of tight lanes, though, even though I found them to be quite fair.
The course seems to lose a good bit of character from the short tees, especially in the woods, where many of the shots become dead straight. I feel like many of the qualities that make Hornets Nest distinctive are only really experienced when playing the longs. As such it's got a somewhat narrower appeal than many other top-tier courses I've played.
To my outsider eye there seems to be some capacity for conflict with other park goers given the proximity to roads and walkways at several points. Elsewhere I had to tee off cautiously to avoid spooking some park goers relaxing on a bench. It's hard to judge for certain as a one-time visitor just how much interference takes place, but I'd keep an eye out for park goers on busy days.
There's little elevation to be found here.
I don't inherently hate raised baskets, but the one on nine seemed a bit gimmicky, perhaps because it was the only defining feature of an otherwise standard short tunnel shot. It felt a bit cheap on a course with as much character as Hornets Nest.
Other Thoughts: I came to Hornets Nest slightly skeptical that it would live up to its reputation, but I found that reputation to be well-earned. It's got loads of character, with a healthy and thoughtful balance between tight and more open environments while always remaining technical. There's the opportunity to both test your game and let your hair down a bit, a fantastic combination. I had a blast playing here.
Of the "Big Three" Charlotte courses I played I would rank them Renaissance Gold > Hornets Nest > Nevin. That being said, Hornets Nest is the course I'd play the most often if I lived in the area, given that it remains quite interesting without being the more-consistently tight technicality of Nevin or the one-of-a-kind-but-kind-of-a-beatdown epic experience that is Renny Gold. All are fantastic courses in their own right, and with each having different styles there's something for everyone in Charlotte. Despite the bias of my western Pennsylvania roots, it's hard to argue with anyone who claims that Charlotte is as good a city as disc golfers get.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful.
Absolutely a blast!
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 18 Innova Discatchers
Concrete tees, with most holes having two tees. Bonus: most of the tees don't just shorten the hole, but make the tee shot very different.
There are plenty of benches scattered throughout the course, providing a moment to catch your breath if you need it.
Excellent navigation signage throughout the course, with explanations of the two layouts and coded arrows to point you to the proper tee
Two baskets on hole 6, always love seeing this on holes shaped like hole 6.
Good mix of throws; wide open, wooded, short, long, two-shot holes, birdie or die holes, right, left, and straight holes. You really get a chance to throw a lot of different shots, and while challenging, they're all super fun to throw.
Gorgeous sign to walk through to get to the first fairway, really adds a little bit of gravitas to starting your round.
Water fountains and restrooms are sprinkled in the park throughout the course, super convenient.
There are some unique basket placements throughout the course: holes 4 and 5 have baskets on flattened platforms on hillsides, holes 8 and 9 have raised baskets on platforms built entirely over the hillsides, and 17 is on a raised ridge.
Cons: Holes play next to and around some walking paths and roads, so you may need to wait for vehicles or walkers to clear before throwing.
Several of the walks between holes are long. Hole 1 to 2 is particularly bad, as is 9 to 10 and 12 to the Web tee on hole 13. Hole 2 to 3 is also somewhat confusing even with the arrows.
There is a mando on hole 3, but I have no idea what tree it actually is as none of them are marked, at least as far as I can tell.
With all the leaves down and blind shots, it can be difficult to find your disc and it is possible to lose a disc.
The raised basket on hole 9 is a little too tall for my taste, and makes putting more annoying than challenging. Lowering it by 3 or 4 feet would make it still challenging, but not annoyingly so. It's also annoying to have two raised baskets back to back (hole 8's is raised as well). I would remove the raised basket on 8 and instead build one more structure on the green, with the basket mounted normally. I know this is mostly just personal preference though.
Several of the Charlotte's Web tees are right next to each other (holes 10 and 12, 14 and 18), which would be kind of annoying for tournaments.
The easiest way to get to the Web tee on hole 16 is to backtrack along 15's fairway (and even when they cut a path it will be in the first cut of 15's rough), which is something I don't like to see on courses, but in this case is pretty much necessary. If you are playing the course, keep alert while walking to the tee and you'll be fine.
Some of the first cut of rough is really rough and makes it almost impossible to do anything other than pitch out. If the first 3 to 5 feet off the fairway on all the wooded holes were cleared of vines, it would make the course even more fun to play.
Actually finding the first hole is difficult, as there is no sign telling you which parking lot it is. You need to drive through most of the park, and then when you have a restroom building and the tennis courts on your left, it is the parking lot on the right. My girlfriend and I went all the way back to the caretaker's house before turning back and finally spotting the practice basket.
Some of the holes can interfere with each other, particularly 15/16 (as mentioned previously) and 17's green and 18 Web's fairway. Just be aware and it shouldn't be a problem, but still not the most ideal setup.
If you play the Web layout (as I did), groups playing the Nest layout will probably catch up to you.
Other Thoughts: Hornet's Nest is the first disc golf course I have played in Charlotte, and it certainly lived up to the Charlotte area hype. With a good balance of wooded and open holes which flow nicely together, and a nice mix of dealer's choice versus more constrained fairways, and a great variety which ensures you don't throw the same shot twice in a row, this course certainly does not disappoint. With two layouts which are significantly different, this course has excellent replay value. While I never was able to play the original layout, the redesign with the pipeline easement is a super fun course. Here are some of my thoughts on the most memorable holes:
Hole 0: I really love the sign you enter through for the course; it's gorgeous and really sets the tone for the rest of the round.
Hole 3: a fantastic wooded hole, with a shorter initial fairway that calls for a RHFH/LHBH hyzer to get into position. The fairway then plays down a wooded stretch to a slightly sloped green.
Hole 5: really fun and long park hole, with the trees and basket on the hillside making the hole challenging but fun.
Hole 8: I really like the platform for the basket, it makes any putt from a position other than parked that much more challenging. I feel like the raised basket is slightly overkill; positioning the pin closer to the edge of the platform would have achieved much of the same effect.
Hole 10/11/12: really great sequence of wooded park holes, with elevation and tight lines coming into play.
Hole 14 - 16: Having played a course built along pipelines before (Pipeline DGC in Spartanburg, SC), I know how fun they can be. However, Hornet's Nest sets this to another level with the finishing holes. Hole 14 is a position shot off the tee along the pipeline, which then plays down and along a wooded fairway with lots of elevation change. Hole 15 then plays along a wooded fairway to a basket set on the side of a hill in the easement with new trees planted around it. As the trees mature this will probably become the signature green on the course. The Web tee plays down a somewhat tight but still fair tunnel fairway to the main fairway from the Nest tee, which is more open and leads to the aforementioned green. Hole 16's Nest tee is a must play, even when playing Web. Right now the Web fairway is still rough (although it will definitely be a fun hole), so your best bet is to play the Nest tee. And what a fun tee it is; you tee from a deck built on the side of the hill down one of two fairways, which drop significantly in height to a well-guarded pin. Overall, an extremely fun sequence of holes.
Hole 17: An absolutely monstrous par 5, not due to its length, but due to the technical nature of the fairway. There's plenty of room to bomb a drive off the Web tee, but hit on the trees along the fairway and par is going to be your best bet. The pin is set along a slight ridge and is slightly elevated, which makes longer putts more risky to run and puts a premium on placing the upshot well.
Hole 18: Extremely fun finishing hole. From the Web tee, the initial fairway is a heavily wooded left to right turning tunnel which plays back into the pipeline RoW in front of the Nest tee. The Nest tee is a must throw, as it tees from beside the woods and lets you really rip on a driver one last time. If you got into the fairway off the Web tee, it's basically the same shot. The designers used the woods on either side to really frame the shot, with the pin tucked far to the right. From the right woods side, it's a huge turnover, while going across the fairway to the left woods will make it more of a straighter approach.
Overall, Hornet's Nest is an absolutely gorgeous and fun course, with a healthy mix of shots and situations to test anyone's golf game. With two tees on nearly every hole, and two baskets on 6, everyone from beginners to pros will be able to test and improve their game.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Nice signs and tee pads
-Different distance tee pads
-Good combo of wooded and wide open holes
-Good combo of long and short holes - 17 killed me, but there a couple shorter par 3's that I had birdie putts on
-Very accessible parking lot directly beside where the course begins and ends
Cons: -Odd transition between 1 and 2
-If you get off the fairway on some of the wooded holes you're score is done - took an 8 on 17 and I didn't even think I played it that poorly
-I remember being worried about hitting cars and people on 5-7 because they are so close to the road and a few picnic shelters
Other Thoughts: I played this one in my first tournament ever last weekend. I really enjoyed the course, but I wouldn't say it is my favorite ever. I had super high expectations coming in because of things I'd read about it. It does have a nice balance of varied hole types, it is well kept, it isn't too hard to navigate, but it didn't amaze me. I would definitely play it again, but I think I'd rather play RL Smith.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: (This is primarily a Nest layout critique)
One of my very favorite courses has been resurrected, this will not suck. Oh, the warm and fuzzies of Nest's yesteryear washed over me like an alcoholic relapse. If you're looking for classic, technical, balanced park-style disc golf than you have found it here on this holy ground.
The Nest is basically the shorter, kinder version of the Web but there's no shortage of venom in its stinger. For the most part, you're going to have to earn your deuces, either with good distance on the 300'+ wooded bad boys, putting prowess on the short holes with those fiendishly tall elevated baskets or by setting up your shots on the exquisitely designed Par 4's. Elevation change isn't substantial but it slopes enough to roll away putts on many and bother footing on others. Nest is more balanced than a tight-rope walker with low blood pressure with literally almost everything you could ask for save mountain holes or water carries. Holes entirely in the woods, holes in and out of woods, and open holes all challenge in their own ways.
The tee signs tell you all you need to know and next tee signs are everywhere to direct you and differentiate from the Web and Nest layouts. New tees are perfectly placed and poured and the old tees are holding up fine. Not a bench at every tee yet but at most.
Cons: In its day Hornet's Nest was a destination course but despite the phoenix rising from the ashes it still shows some signs of age. I'm a tough critic, especially regarding safety, so this is where Nest is bittersweet for me. Hole 2 is pretty close to a walking path. Hole 4 is near a ball field and a path and you could easily spill into a parking lot if you overshoot the hole. Hole 5 now has a blind corner with that new pavilion thing on the right, plus the old road along the left and the basket is just in front of a sidewalk and pond. Hole 6 and 7 have the same road issues. The back 9 has no such issues though as you get away from the shared spaces of the park and more into the DG exclusive woods.
Navigation can be rough at times. Decent hike to hole 2 which at the date of this writing has no discernible tee except the tee for tourneys only. Another long walk to the back 9 and if you're playing Nest you'll pass two Web tees before you get to your #10 tee. Flow is intuitive after that but worth mentioning, the red/yellow color scheme of next tee arrows that differentiates Web and Nest layouts flip-flops on hole 11 or so.
Design-wise I can't complain about much. Par seems very accurate and most holes seem strong. All the par 4's seem legitimate and not the dreaded 'tweener Par 3.5s that plague so many courses. The Par 3's are stout, only the elevated basket holes on the front 9, hole 4 and maybe hole 11, 13, and maybe 15 could suffer some Par 2 scoring (I savor the birdie opportunities though). Hole 2 smacks of filler hole for sure but I get the impression it's the best lemonade they could make with lemons. Hole 16 is the only hole I don't really like. I don't think the fairways are quite wide enough to reward skill as much as luck.
Other Thoughts: So my rating seems fairly harsh considering my obvious man-crush on this course. I tried to rate it on the totality of the course in relation with modern standards and the competition nearby in the Queen City as well as beyond, so as not to fall into the homeboy bias trap. I'd give this course a 3.75 in a heartbeat and my arm could be twisted into a 4, indubitably. But this is what I'm giving it, for now.
Ignore my rating though. This course is a master craft of design and squeezes out every fathomable drop of quality the park and terrain offers. It's no longer the airbrushed super model pinup course associated in the top 10 or so but it's easily the course you wife up in a heartbeat with nary a regret.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: 1978
Thanks for the review. Color coding did not switch. The metal signs are correct. I just messed up the laminated signs, these will be fixed when the lunch trays are available so we can have permanent/removeable next tee signs. Hope we get that 4.00 when casual 2 is poured and teesigns fixed.
Hornets Nest Park
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Has concrete tee pads for all tees except for hole #16 Nest having a deck
Has excellent tee signs
Has many benches throughout course
Has some elevated baskets
Good mix of open/wooded fairways with doglegs and elevations
Has next tee signs posted throughout - easy to navigate
Challenging, long course with variety of pars
Has two loops of the front and back nines
Some holes play across the road or very close to it (one can expect some delays)
Some holes have fairly long walks in between such as #1 & #2 and #9 & #10 - not really a con in my book but some may not like the additional walking on top of it being a long course
Course can get crowded at times as it's popular with parkgoers and players
This a nice, challenging multi-use 19 hole course in Charlotte that I enjoyed playing on a Friday evening while vacationing out here. I have heard in the past that this course is a must-play and a gem of a course to play if you're ever in the Queen City. I didn't play the old layout and can't make a comparison but this course didn't disappoint and is phenomenal. From the tee signs looking fantastic, the labor involved in creating the wooden deck on hole 16, elevated baskets on holes 8, 9, and 17, and the retaining walls for the baskets of holes 4 & 5 - lots of TLC is evident throughout the course. Innova DISCatcher Pros with the yellow crown are visible from most tees. The course has a few holes such as holes 5, 6, 7, and 19 that play across the road or very close to it and therefore one can expect some delays if the park is busy. Some holes have fairly long walks in between such as #1 & #2 and #9 & #10 but they were not that bad. I can see how the repositioning of hole #2 basket from a peninsula is a bummer but it's not any easier with a tunnel shot now. Lots of action was happening that Friday evening so I can't imagine how busy it is on the weekends. This is definitely a destination course in a destination city that you shouldn't skip out on but you might want to be mindful on when to play as to beat the crowds.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Hornets Nest. New look. Same great taste.
16 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The new Hornets Nest course. It's the old friend you haven't seen in years, but can immediately pick things up without missing a beat.
- I'll try to keep from referring to the old layout. That's irrelevant to anyone who didn't play it before. Plus, the course was always undergoing slight tweaks, so there wasn't ever one true 'old' layout.
- Course feels pretty much the same. The biggest difference is that the back 9 isn't as wooded as it was before. The front 9 is now more wooded, so it's a wash.
- My review is based on the Nest layout, so distances will be listed as such. #1 makes you be on your game immediately. It's a tight, wooded fairway at 270 feet. If you miss your line, have fun scrambling for a bogey right away. I hate starting my round on a down note!
- #3 is the best addition to the course. A long, wooded, multi-shot dogleg at 486 feet. The landing area looks small from the tee pad, but it's much wider once you're in the fairway. That begs you to be aggressive on your tee shot. The hole is going to reward shot making with solid birdie 3s.
- Hole #7 is unchanged. It's fantastically simple, yet great. After all these years, why do my tee shots still always end up behind one of the small trees on the left side of the fairway along the road?
- Hole #10 is another classic, a shortened version of classic Web #1 (current Web #10). Between this hole, #11 & 13, you've got a Bradford vibe going on.
- Putting the tee pad on a deck on #16 somehow makes this hole suddenly much better. It's a better play to chill, a better view, and a slightly easier line to hit the gap.
- Tee signs are awesome. The best in Charlotte. With their blue borders, they do however, look a lot like Blu-ray movie cases. Also, there are lots of benches on most, if not, all the holes.
- Park is solid altogether with tons of amenities. I was also impressed that on the Saturday morning I was playing, I saw park rangers and a police car driving through the park at least 4 times. If that's a regular occurrence, that much security presence is a huge plus.
Cons: Navigation is overly complicated at times. After finishing #9, the directions tell you to walk along the edge of the woods rather than following the path. The path is faster, more direct, and, the same path that's always led from #9 back towards #10. Sometimes, less IS more.
- I'm not a fan of #17. My only gripe about the transition from the old to the new Nest is that the old #16 and/or #17 should still be in existence. Granted, I think the old, old # along the creek should still be there, but that's now part of natural preserve land.
- Some of the benches are rather...far...from the actual tee pads. If you notice the tee pad and the bench are far apart, then they must be far apart.
- I do hope this course doesn't get tinkered with any more. Obviously a permanent #2 must be established. The 'temporary' #2 is the worst hole on the course, so I hope a final layout is established. Other than that, leave the course as is. Why was a tee pad poured for the island #2 hole when it was never going to be a long-term layout?
- The weirdest quirk on the course? When you walk from #9 to the back 9, the first tee pad you see is not for your next hole. No. That's #12. You must walk past it to get to #10. If you're playing the Web, it's not because the tee sign for #10 Web is right there. Just be aware if you are playing the Nest.
- As you can tell, there's really nothing wrong with the course. If you spend your entire round comparing it to an old, no-longer-existing layout, you're missing out on what this course offers.
Other Thoughts: Hornets Nest has changed; but, really, it's still just as exceptional as ever. This was my home course for essentially the first decade I played disc golf. And it's still the course I feel most at home with, even though it's now 30 minutes away. I'm glad it still feels like the Nest.
- Honestly, this is the most complete new course I've played in Charlotte ever. We like opening our courses while they're a work in progress. So, playing a 'new' course with everything completed - tee pads, signs, arrows, etc. - was surprising.
- I always loved the unofficial 19th hole. Having it now listed as an official hole (and one you must play to get an online round rating), it's not as fun. Now I must care about the risk/reward element of the hole.
- Yes, gaunlets and short, birdie/ace-run par 3s are gone (#11). In their place are new classic layouts. Shoot, with the work done around the baskets on #8 & 9, the holes suddenly became much better.
- I like how the course breaks up the 4 long, challenging holes evenly throughout the round. There's essentially one every quarter of the round - hole #3, #7, #14 & 17. You'll have a tough hole, then a cooldown, before another mountain climb.
- You can easily argue that #3 is the best on the course. It's slightly odd having the best layout so early in the round.
- IMO, I think the front 9 is now more enjoyable than the back 9. What's not an opinion is that the two 9s have a better mix of open and wooded holes. Previously, the front was essentially all open and the back was mainly wooded holes.
- Course is getting a 4.5 from me. This is the only course, of the 240+ I've played, that I'll give a rating bump to because of a bias. It's probably only a 4.0 rating. Being 'my' course, you're getting that half-point bump.
- This is still as much of a must-play as ever. And with the new layout, I think returning players have even more reason to play it.
16 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Designer Response by: 1978
Thank you for your review. I'll just note 2 things. 1. Benches are sometime away from the short tee's because the short tees are in the landing zones for the Web Layout and we wanted as little interference as possible. 2. Hole 2 teepad was poured because the intention was to have it be a permanent location. Park decided the actual literal swimming was more than they bargained for, they were ok with brief wading. The new 2 will be the permanent #2, however, the basket will be moved to the island for tournaments. New 2 is basically the guantlet back ;-) but now with 3 lines and it will get a teepad soon. It's what we have to work with, for now.
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