Crusty and Unsettled
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -A technical wooded course with a few open holes, and a crash the basket hole. Dorey Park in my opinion is "teaching" course for hitting lines very much like my first course Bayville in Virginia Beach, but Dorey Park more difficult.
-I loved the terrain of the course hilly and sloping, sparse grass and rough, cluttered with pine trees, fallen trees, and several holes with tree damage from termites and other critters. Some trees having been whittled down to just a few feet. The feeling of a crusty old course that could have been there for a hundred years. First time having that feeling.
-Beginners and Recreational players will likely find themselves overwhelmed, but fun. Intermediate and Advanced from the long tees will likely find the course challenging.
-No. 1 hole from the long tees ranks as the hardest out of all the first holes I have played.
-Holes 1-4 from the long tees ranks No. 2 behind Casey Logan in Kill Devil Hills, NC for difficulty for the first 4 holes on the courses I have played. It will likely determine the flow for the rest of your round.
-No. 1 long tee pad is field turf and a teaser. I had read Pmay5's review which prepared me for the rest of the pads.
-If you like bomber holes, you will get three cracks at it on 5, 16-17.
-Hole numbers are posted on trees next to tee pads.
-The course has either completed a realignment or in the middle of one? Which means there correcting something, and that should be good.
-Navigation is good and the course marked to the next hole with a sign, navigation is counterclockwise.
-Little disc lost potential, with sparse grass but tall it gives the appearance of "rut oh", but when you walk up on your disc you'll see it.
-Might as well get warmed up from the parking lot to the first tee, play it as 550-foot par 5 uphill. On the way back to the parking lot from 18 a straight downhill throw of about 700 feet, and enjoy the flight of your disc.
Cons: -The course realignment is it complete, still in the middle of it? No way to know playing the course for the first time. Mshelton in his review states there was a realignment a few years prior to his review in 2018, but there are a few tee signs lying next to tee pads with a different hole number than the one you are playing. There are post with different hole numbers and faded out. Some long and short tees have been combined, and some short tees have orange flags to mark tee moved up the fairway. To me, the course is very unsettled.
-There is no par, distance, or map at each tee. Some baskets are blind from the tee.
-Some tee pads are uneven, some are eroding away, and some tee markers are missing. After playing the long tee No. 1 turf pad, it can be a letdown.
-Per local members on a course app, heavy or sustained rain can turn the course into mud pit.
-It is a little bit of a walk from 1st basket to 2nd tee and a horse trail interacts with the course trail. Wander off track and had to pull up a course app. Used the app just a few other times.
-There are hiking, biking trails thru the course, and was a little busy on a morning round starting at 8am. So, keep your eyes peeled.
Other Thoughts: I enjoyed the round at Dorey Park, wooded courses are my favorite. It is a solid teaching course for beginners to hit lines, and for others to improve their game. The crusty terrain was scenic in a different way, and some unique holes that I have not played on other courses. Tight lines, a teacher, and terrain I anchor my overall rating on a 4.5. But the unsettledness of what is going on with the course is the alignment complete or another alignment, and what is up with the short tee pads drops the rating down. I think the 2.5 is a good rating for now, and I will keep an eye out on the course, and if the course changes are completed, I will come back for another visit and update my review. Regardless, if I lived in the Richmond area, I would play the course often.
From the short tees the round took 60 minutes, and from long 70 minutes.
Notable Basket Placement:
No. 11 is placed on a blind down hill slope and can be a roller.
Notable Tee Pad:
No. 18 short there are a hand full of trees about 20 feet in front of the tee with thin gaps. The angle is awkward for a lefty and likely for a righty. My angle had me aiming for the left rough.
No. 4 long Par 3 at 291 feet with the fairway cluttered with pine trees. There is a knoll right in front of the basket, so the basket is sitting behind the knoll with the lower 1/3rd of basket hidden. Behind the basket is a drop off and roller to a ditch about 50 feet down.
No. 6 long Par 3 at 305 feet is a heavy tree line lazy dogleg left. The hole starts slowly up a rise, and at the dogleg about 200 out drops down hill to the basket. A log bunkers on the left at the rise, and canopy around the basket. It can be a roller, but heavy brush to help stop it. Its scenic. When I played the shorts, I walked up fairway to find the basket, glad I did.
No. 16 short at 219 feet, and long at 304 feet both Par 3. "Crash that Basket"! There is heavy pines and brush within C2 protecting the basket. Long tee sits in the open and you need to throw it at least 240 on a right to left to hit those trees. Short tee throws across the open from trees and just go for it. It is a poke and hope, but a fun throw. Cost me a stroke both rounds.
No. 8 both tees at 219 feet Par 3 with foliage is very scenic and very narrow. The tee is elevated above the fairway about 15 feet sloping downhill and halfway rising back up to the basket. Cluttered with trees, but doable. The narrowest gap is about 12 feet. At the lowest point is a small brook and a foot bridge. Fun hole to play, and a favorite at that distance.
No. 1 long tee at 361 feet Par 3 enjoy the turf tee pad, it's the only one you'll play. The tee is elevated about 15 feet and straight away to a narrow gap of about 20 feet and 150 feet away. Tall pines line the fairway all the way down to C2. I have not played a tee shot like that, let alone on a first hole, and it was awkward. The basket is protected by more pines in C1. A heck of a way to start the round with a bogey and could have been worse.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Maybe my favorite in the area
Pros: If you're into forested courses (they're my favorite), or maybe don't have the arm for the bigger, more open courses, then I would give this place a try. It's a good little exercise too, up and down and all around the trail. Good elevation changes combined with tighter lines via many trees make for some technical and creative plays. The next tee markers exist, which is more than I can say about the other courses I've played in the area (Gillie's, Bryan and Dunncroft), although getting to hole 2 is kind of iffy, the path is not obvious. The course didn't seem that busy either, at least before noon. I played with two other people and only had one behind us that we let play through.
Cons: My only real con would be the fairways could be a little wider. I'd rather have it rely so much on luck if you're going to smack a tree or not, but it makes for good practice on accuracy (?). Most of the holes had obvious lines, but a lot could use some grooming.
Other Thoughts: Overall it was a fun time with interesting holes, under the canopy protecting us from the summer sun, and I'm looking forward to going back. Finding it was a bit tricky, it's in a big park complex, but if you follow the signs you can figure it out. It's in the very back left, just park by the playground and walk into the field. You should be able to see a practice basket in the open field, and the first tee is just beyond that.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Great Course in a Beautiful Park
Pros: Great course in a beautiful park. Plenty of variations throughout the course. One of the nicer courses in Richmond, VA. The place was CLEAN. We saw a snake, turtle and deer during the day while we were there, so lots of wildlife.
Cons: Long walk to tee one and then back to the car after 18. Not a big issue since it's a great park. Wish the tees were had boxes, everything is natural.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Beautiful park, challenging wooded course
Pros: Good Mach 3 baskets, good tee signs and very helpful next tee signs.
Heavily wooded holes for most of the course, with only three open, or partially open holes.
The White tees are not a real long course, but the tightness makes this challenging. Playing from the Blues would really up the challenge.
Good mix of left and right holes, with several straight holes also.
Not a ton of elevation in this part of the park, but what there is, was used on several holes.
Beautiful park, with many large activity areas you pass on the way in. The course is at the very back of park, mostly secluded holes in this DG only area, except for several crossings of a busy, paved greenway trail, part of the 52 mile long Virginia Capital Trail. I even answered a few DG questions from passing cyclists.
Oh, and several flyovers on final approach to Richmond Intl on the day I was there, very cool!
Cons: I stepped up to the First tee and discovered a turf teepad, I was very excited. Until a local standing there informed me this was the only one. The rest of the course has natural tees which are level and in pretty good shape, but a few were a little muddy.
There is about a 500' walk from the parking lot to the first tee, then an even longer walk back to the parking lot after 18. Oh yea, both walks were across beautiful grass with no other activities leading to #1 and a fishing pond and paved trail bordering the walk after #18.
Don't recall any benches on the course, a couple of long walks between holes means you are walking a lot more than the posted distance of the course.
The park needs to install a sign at the end of the parking lot pointing toward the first tee. As I was playing #16, I came across two guys obviously lost on the course. After parking, they had headed down the paved path and were looking for the first tee. Since there were several holes in that area, I told them their best bet was to play #10 and the back 9, then after #18, head towards #1 and play the front 9.
Other Thoughts: As I mentioned above, Dorey Park is a very large, beautiful park with Football/Soccer fields, baseball diamonds, equestrian area, large playground, tennis courts, dog park and fishing pond. There appears to be open areas near those activities as well as woods, yet this course was placed in a heavily wooded area, with very little access to any of the open areas. There are restrooms near the parking lot, but in the opposite direction from the course, I understand a water fountain is available at the nearby dog park.
The only two (and one partial) open holes use a pipeline ROW clearing, #5 is uphill, #17 is down, then uphill, finishing on a rocky slope, then #16 tees and plays in the ROW, with a sharp left turn into the treeline to get to a mostly hidden basket.
The most significant elevation changes are served up in pairs, #6 is straight and downhill, steep at the bottom and #7 is uphill with couple of different lines. #11 goes down and a long turn to the left, followed by #12 which is uphill and a sharp right at the top.
Some other interesting holes were:
#8 - short downhill shot down a very tight chute, very thick on both sides will leave you scrambling for par if you miss the fairway.
#15 - mostly flat and wide, through scattered trees, with multiple paths to the basket, kind of reminds me of a Houck design I have seen on courses.
#18 - if you are looking for scoring separation on the final hole, you should get it here. 347' from the whites, on a straight narrow fairway, but about 100-150' from the tee, there are a picket line of hardwood trees diagonally across the fairway. You have to flex something through there and hope it continues to the large green.
Even if the designer was allowed to add a couple of open holes on the walks from and to the Parking lot, they wouldn't fit in with the character of this course. It challenges you with wooded fairways and a variety of shots needed to score well. Beginners and intermediates should have a challenge from the Whites and the Blues (at 6000' +) should be enough to challenge anyone. It is a fun course to play, not overwhelming tight, but putting accuracy at a premium.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 2 Not
Nice little course
Pros: Nice layout through the woods, long tees ad some nice challenges. Just about every shot is covered. Really nice course to take a starting player and throw from the whites, emphasis is put on line and shot shaping not distance, good shots are rewarded.
Cons: A couple of the open holes are lack luster but not bad when taken in with the whole course.
18, the course was redesigned and changed when the Capital bike trail went in a few years ago, 5 holes had to be redone. While 18 is fine hole it just doesn't belong on this course. It doesn't just fit with the theme. I'm not saying it's a bad hole it just doesn't belong on the course. The tee shot from the whites is some odd maybe flipup s-turn hope or a hyzer that may not get through to a tough approach. Long tees is just a tunnel shot to the white tee.
I love this course but would just like to see 18 redone so that it fits in with the rest of the course. 18 could actually be split in 2, put a basket before the current white tees, make the blue tees the white tees for it and back the blues up into the woods. 19 could then use the existing white tees as the blues and the whites could be moved up and to the left a bit.
Other Thoughts: Nice quiet and peaceful course, good walk through the woods, and another one that would be good from the short tees with just a putter or mid.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Richmond's Original Woods Course v2
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Quiet setting, varied elevation
Other Thoughts: Dorey Park is typical of several of the older disc golf courses in Virginia; from the white tees, it's a relatively short course in a big, nice park but is set away from the main park in a set of woods that otherwise probably wouldn't see much use. But that said, Dorey Park is another of my hometown courses that perhaps doesn't stand out at first, but may grow on you.
Except for three holes set out along a pipeline easement, this course plays entirely in the woods, and features a bit of up and down on some holes. A lot of players, I think, can get easily frustrated with a woods setting, but I always recommend this course for several reasons: 1) the hills make it actually a bit of exercise; 2) I find the quiet setting most appealing; 3) this course makes you get good at throwing accurately, which has helped me immeasurably on more open courses; and 4) throwing a good drive here that skims high among the trees but doesn't hit any of them is a great feeling.
The tees at Dorey Park are marked but not even graded, and the slope or rocks or roots can make teeing off a challenge sometimes, especially if you're not used to courses with "natural" tee pads. Dorey does feature both am and pro tees, however, and many of the holes are made considerably more challenging by the blue pro tees. Tee pads and basket placements never change.
While woods courses like Dorey Park can be an acquired taste, I always relish a round there. The game is all about distance AND accuracy, and Dorey makes you use both, but is not unreasonable in its demands. Learning the skills necessary to throw a good round at Dorey Park has improved my game more than any number of rounds at a more scenic but open course would. And the serene playing environment is always a good thing.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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