7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: (2.333 Rating) A prototypical city park course with some short par 4s
- SKILL LEVEL FRIENDLY - H.A Alexander Park reads as recreational skills course that can be fun for some higher skilled players and forgiving enough for beginning players. There are a couple longer holes, to test and encourage the development of a bigger arm. There are a few short technical plays to test and encourage the development of greater accuracy. The hazards are minimal with a small creek and pond coming into fringe play on a shot or two and a couple of areas with moderate overgrowth.
- TEES - Adequate. They are rubber maps, and were very grippy in the cold dry air for my play. They were in great shape and are composed of two 4 foot by 6 foot sections. A few are starting to show a one inch separation between segments, but it made no impact on my throws.
- CHARACTER - About average. The basic staples are well done, baskets and tees. However, there are some other typical amenities that are sub-par or omitted. The signage is ineffective (see cons navigation), there is no seating and the tee shading is very light. There is also no finishing shelter with picnic tables or a community board. There is a nice practice basket behind tee (1) and there are restrooms in the park.
- MAINTENANCE - H.A Alexander Park appears to be a well keep up and it was in great shape for my visit. Very few branches or twigs littered about, cut grass and little overgrowth.
Cons: A typical city park course that seemingly evades all the best thought provoking elements.
- PAR 4S - There are six listed par 4s out here and they among the easiest I've ever played. The distances on these holes are between 345 and 500 feet and five out of six of them are open. I was able to three them all on first play. Holes (9) and (18) are the shortest and should be relisted as par 3s outright. They don't even meet the suggested length for a par 4 for recreational players per the PDGA guidelines.
- LACK OF CHALLENGE - A few too many featureless holes out here to appeal to veteran travelers. Players at the intermediate level should consider playing them all 3s. Shop shaping is limited. Holes (7) and (8) were the only holes that had me ponder my options.
- UNIQUENESS - About average but it could have been so much more. A decent hole length variation. low two hundreds to five hundred feet. A few holes require a little bend and one wooded hole has multiple needle lines. There are a few short par 4s as stated above. Water comes into play in fringe situations but sadly it made no impact on my thought process. There are a couple tunnel shots and a bit too many completely open and obstacle free holes. The design could have been a whole lot more engaging. There are missed opportunities in not incorporating the creek or pond more. Perhaps the direction from the park was to stay away from these elements. There also could have been more shots through the woods.
- ELEVATION - Not one hole out here has a grade difference above 10 feet.
- NAVIGATION - This one would have been a bit of a challenge had I not had a guide first go around. There's a course map near hole (1). Even though it looks like some coin was dropped on it, it's not the most effective example. Why lines weren't drawn between baskets and tees was an error of omission. No north arrow on the map and all the trees are represented by 33 identical profile clip art trees seemingly randomly thrown about (yes I counted them.) Beyond the map, navigation on the course can get tricky as there are some transitions over two hundred feet. There are no navigational cues between holes and hole signage is just a number, distance and par.
Other Thoughts: Somehow I was able talk fellow DGCR reviewer wericsson to join me on my first visit. A 7am round in 25 degree temps. Now that's a couple of crazy fools. It was actually a good time to throw as by the time we finished the warming temps were starting to turn the ground into mud. As for the course itself, it's a nice introductory course with perhaps some room to grow. The one thing that's nice about the rubber tee is that it makes modification a bit less costly. Is the course worth checking out, yes for those that live within an hour, but its definitely not a destination. The best course I can recommend within 30 minutes of here is Flying Dragon in Decatur.
- TIME PLAY - Expect a typical four sum to play a round in about two hours, give or take.
- NATURAL BEAUTY - Neither a con or pro as I scored the beauty right in the middle. H.A Alexander Park has some nice parts to it. Some of layouts best natural features are unfortunately only seen and not used. There are several buildings and ball fields in view along the layout but it was evenly balanced with the pros to make a typical looking course in terms of beauty.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: New Mach baskets, tee signs (number, distance, and par only, but that works at this kind of course), and a detailed course map tick most of the basics boxes, and in warm, dry weather, the rubber tees are awesome.
Layout flows well, and features a variety of distances and a decent mixture of open and lightly wooded holes throughout, though not many that I would call tight.
Park seems well-kept, and the course plays reasonably well with other facilities: close at times, but never blind or otherwise very hazardous.
Hole 15 was probably my favorite, and struck me as a good example of the open park golf feel: water right, late trees to constrict the second shot, but nothing too tight or hilly.
Cons: The rubber tees are absurdly slick in cold, damp weather, which is a shame, considering how awesome they seemed when it was yet summer. I couldn't even keep my feet strictly where I put them on a two-step walk-up. (NB: if you can get a whole round in before the frost melts, they go back to decent in the absence of liquid water)
A majority of holes are very permissive and open. Par seems rather soft, for not unrelated reasons, and a few of the more open holes felt kinda repetitive. Course is also very flat.
Other Thoughts: Overall, this was an enjoyable course, but not all that challenging (though against an adjusted par (56 or 57?), it might have seemed a mite tougher). I will be back, but maybe not until it warms back up again.
Pet peeve: the DGA number plates are actually really hard to read from a distance in my opinion, because the background of a basket/logo breaks up the outline of the numbers. That said, with the tee signs in place now, this doesn't count as a hard con in my opinion.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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