Charming Elevation Course With Innovative Features
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Gorgeous course with healthy elevation changes, short to medium length wooded technical holes and a couple of water hazards. Nice elevated turf tees with specific sizes to force a stand and deliver drive on some holes. (I talked with the course designer to confirm that the tee sizes were intentionally designed to force different types of driving styles. I think this is the first time that I have seen this, and I kind of like it.) Tee signs have hole # and distance. Super easy navigation with basket mounted next tee arrows and innovative chain direction cues.
Hole four. Up a hill with the basket sitting in front of a cave!
Cons: One tee pad and one basket per hole. Not necessarily a con, but could limit the course to Int-Adv level players. The course may be a little hard on rec and new throwers and might be a little easy for pros, but I think most would enjoy a round here.
There is a bit of a walk from 12's basket to 13's tee. keep going down the road.
Other Thoughts: Beautiful course with giant rock formations and boulders. A joy to play. Makes for a good leg stretching round if driving by on I-75.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
An instant favorite
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Turf tees are awesome! Good grip and ample run up space.
-Baskets are great quality DISCatchers that are as good as new. They are also highly visible in the dense forest.
-Rough was in good condition, arguably as good as the fairway, but with more trees, which I think a rough should be: semi-easy footing, but difficult lines.
-This course has some really high quality elevation, and it is used PERFECTLY! The best holes for elevation are 4, 9, and 11.
-This course is very wooded, so that makes trees very important. This course used the trees well. The trees and the elevation together define the holes for most of this course.
-This course is difficult to traverse with paths, that being said, it would be unimaginable without them.
-This course is easy to navigate if you look for the pretty obvious tee areas, and follow the arrows on the baskets, the map is very nice, even though I didn't have to use it.
-This course has a nice vibe, it feels very professional, even though it is a relatively short course.
-Creeks and other water come into play on around 4 of the holes, they are always and obstacle that is either right next to the hole, or running across it.
-Benches by every tee, very nice, especially in the summer heat.
-Driving up to this course, I was afraid it wouldn't be very good because it seemed like we were headed into the middle of nowhere, but the woods this course plays through are really amazing.
-A wide variety of shots to throw, most holes had an obvious line, and a non obvious more daring line. Which most good woods course have, the nice thing about this course in particular is the more obvious lines can be thrown either forehand or backhand.
-I have played a fair amount of courses, and my least favorite thing with most of them is when they have garbage everywhere, I am pleased to say that there was absolutely no garbage at this course.
Cons: -Tee signs, while high quality, only have hole # and distance, it would be nice to have par and a map.
-The fairway was a little worse for wear, this isn't a huge con, but it is annoying on some holes (namely 3 and 18) to look through little bushes, weeds, etc for discs.
-One of the bigger problems I have with this course is the distance. most holes are under 300', which is typical for a woods course, but the only thing I feel really holds this course back from being a really nice professional course, it the short distances.
Other Thoughts: -This course gets a 2/4 on the new shoe index
-Favorite holes: 1, 3, 4, 9, 13, 14
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: (3.562 Rating) A moderate to heavily wooded course of intermediate difficulty.
- RAW BEAUTY - One of the more beautiful courses I've ever played and currently in my personal top 15 (268 courses played as of this review) Etowah plays threw the Red Top Mountain area, specifically Vineyard Mountain, and has holes that play threw valleys and small ridges. On hole (13), one can get partial view of Allatoona Dam and full views of the Etowah river. The course is two thirds heavily wooded and manmade structures are limited to park buildings and parks roads.
- HOLE 4 - Wow! I'm at +4,000 unique holes played now and this one would make my personal top 5 favorites. No spoiler description from me, experience it for yourself.
- UNIQUENESS - The hole variety is better than most courses. For one, this is not a fully heavily wooded course, there are some lightly wooded holes on the back nine. There are also a bunch of elevation changes in the +20 foot range and a one maxes out at around 50 feet down on hole (11). Mostly par 3s but a couple shorter par 4s. Holes twist left and right, although the RHBH hyzer play seemed to be more prevalent. Other missing items include a dogleg par 4s, a par 5s and a register-able water play. Yes (12) has water along the entire right side, but it's already out of bounds with the fence before the water.
- CHALLENGING - This course manages to find the perfect middle ground between too easy and too hard with the one set of tees and basket locations. It reads as an intermediate level course and will have these players averaging even to 4 down. I could see recreational thru advanced level players loving this course. Probably not the best course for beginners. Also not championship difficult for the pros, but then again, how many course are?
- CHARACTER - For a young course, not too bad. For one thing, perfect baskets for a woods course with the yellow bands peaking through the trees. Also two practice baskets with distances marked off in the parking lot. There are also drive markers on both par 4s. Great course map at the community board. Simple tee signs showing number and distance that will need to be upgraded. Benches were already at lots of the tees on my visit and shading is at almost all of them as well.
- NAVIGATION - Pretty good. As stated, great course map near (1). Take a picture or have it printed, as I took a couple peaks. Also nice wooded arrows below every basket and a few other directional cues as well. Nice bridges and a couple wood stairs are now installed. The course is not cart friendly IMO however.
Cons: Very few issues with Etowah.
- TEES - Among the better turf tees I've played on, but still turf. 5.5 feet wide by 10.5 feet long with a yellow foul line. (15's) tee had the turf blown over due to the wind, probably from the windy day before, but I was able to correct it. (9) and (11) were really abbreviated tees being only 4 or 5 feet long, but in all fairness, major kudos to those involved hauling and constructing these in a hard to reach area. A few of the pads were showing a touch of unevenness.
- AFTER HOLE 11 - The course is consistently entertaining threw 11 holes. Starting at hole (12) the hole to hole quality degrades a bit over the beginning's euphoric high. (12) and (14-17) all play along park roads. The early heavily woodsy portion dissolves to become more lightly to moderately wooded. There is also less elevation and it has the look and feel of a typical city park course. I liked the rocks around (17's) basket, but then (18) was an anticlimactic average looking wide tunnel shot hole. In hindsight I kind of wish the course started at (5) and ended at (4). I was very temped to re-throw (4) walking by it after finishing (18).
- HOLE 7 - A poke and hope shot without a realistic line. I predict a widening at some point.
- PAY TO PLAY - A few bucks to enter the park. Worth it for this course.
- TERRAIN - Some steep terrain on a few holes that's probably too raw for many. Those that have bad knees or ankles should stay clear of this course.
Other Thoughts: I wish I lived nearby. Cause I'd definitely have a seasonal pass and would be playing this all the time. What an awesome start for a newer course. Anyone traveling along I75 between Chattanooga and Atlanta needs to take a quick pit stop here and check this gem out. Etowah will be beloved by those that are fans of beautiful courses. As this course continues to get more upgrades, I'm sure it will start to challenge the top DGCR rated Atlanta area courses like Tyus, Mulberry and Perkerson. No doubt Etowah's a top 25 Georgia course and its probably knocking on the door of the top 10.
- DRAINAGE - From reading a previous review, I was a bit worried about standing water and mud as I played two days after a one inch rain event. Hole (1) was flooded pretty good, but other than that, just a couple muddy holes and the remainder of the course was dry.
- TIME PLAY - I finished in just over an hour solo. There are a couple long walks between a few holes. Figure a four sum should play this one in about 2 hours.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Well maintained
Excellent practice area
Lots of benches and well made stairs
The best designed homemade pallets to walk through wet areas I've ever seen
A few really well designed and fun/challenging holes (4, 15, 16, etc)
Cons: No concrete pads
More than a few baskets are too close to other tee pads
A couple of benches are practically on the back of the teepad (hole 3 and 8
come to mind) making them useless or in the way
Two of the teepads are intentionally short in steep areas that are
dangerous. You can easily fall off the front of the unnecessarily short pads (holes 9 and 11)
More stairs/level walking paths still needed in and around steep areas
(leaving 11's green, path to 13's basket)
Tons of standing water around a third of the course. Apparently is a common
Pay to play (not really a con, but will prevent me from coming back as
often as there are better, closer, free courses to play)
Other Thoughts: I enjoyed my round at Etowah and will likely be back
to play in the future when certain friends or family want to go have a
casual outing. I would say the course lends itself to a casual atmosphere
and rates as an intermediate level course.
There were some enjoyable design factors. I like wooded courses
and hole 1 for instance was a great little starter hole. Hole 4 (the cave
hole) put a true disc golf smile on my face. The elevation all over is
fun. I definitely found myself wanting some longer downhill or tougher
uphill holes. Hole 9 is a great little tough hole and would be much
better with a full teepad. The last third of the course really shone with
some great challenging holes on 12 and 14-17 that really added to the overall
enjoyment of the round and left me more likely to come back.
I'd say half the holes on the course are relatively nondescript and don't
deserve much mention other than the fact that it is clear a lot of work
was put into them and it is much appreciated. I do think the road should
be OB on hole 13 not the creek to make it more challenging. Hole
7 is the worst hole on the course with luck playing a factor as
much as skill in getting down the barely-there fairway routes. Hole 13
stood out as the worst of the filler holes as you walk the wrong
direction for a very short easy hole that lacks imagination and then walk
back to get to the next hole.
A quick word on the turf pads. I know plenty of people like them. I do not.
Concrete is the gold standard and will always be my preference. Turf will
also require maintenance over the years and it will be interesting to see
how that goes. That said they are probably some of the best non-concrete
pads I've played on but I still found myself slipping or holding back out
of fear of slipping throughout the round.
I'd love to come back and play the course in the summer and see how it
plays. Big thanks to all those who put the hard work into this little course
especially Sam and keep it up!
6 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Strong design in a BEAUTIFUL park
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This was a really fun round. Etowah is a picturesque wooded course complete with plenty of elevation and fair-but-challenging lines. The majority of holes will tempt you with a few lines to get to the basket, usually with a wider primary route and a more tricky secondary option. With some smart city park-ish holes towards the end, Etowah offers good variety and let's you get a few open rips before your round ends.
The landscape adds to the fun as you'll have low-lying groundcover and ferns throughout instead of the bushy/thorny messes common to this part of the country. Straying off the fairway doesn't instantly put you in jail here. Amenities were strong. The attention to detail with tees, trails, steps, bridges, etc was greatly appreciated! The turf-on-wood tees (although sometimes a little lumpy) are a nice touch. The tee signs were lacking but I actually liked the minimalist aesthetic here. Most holes were around 300ft or less and it usually wasn't tough to spot the sparkling new discatcher baskets from the tee. On the 2 400ft+ holes, there are distance markers every 100ft!
Hole 4 is a fantastic uphill ace run with a basket sitting at the mouth of a shallow cave. Feel free to get aggressive on this as you have a nice backstop. Landing in the back of this "cave" should still allow a 25 ft or less birdie putt. 8-11 take you on an extreme elevation tour. 12-18 get out of the thick woods and into some longer and more open shots.
Cons: It would have been nice to have a few legit multi-stage par 4 holes. All but hole #3 are reachable from the tee for an advanced player.
Noobs may gripe about the short tee length on 9 and 11 (they force a nearly standstill drive).
Compared to the epic woods fun on the first 11, the last 7 holes could be a slight let-down.
Other Thoughts: This was a no-brainer stop along I75 for me. Etowah is maybe 5 minutes off the highway and offers a top-notch experience. I'd rate the first 11 holes as a 4.0-4.5 and the last 7 as a 3.5. Nonetheless, this is a must-play in the ATL area!
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Great location with balanced mix of holes on both flat and hilly terrain. Additionally, a very family friendly location with park amenities, group shelters, clean restrooms all set along the scenic Etowah river.
Excellent location for the traveling player. Course is located only a few miles off of I-75.
Cons: No major cons worth mentioning. It's mainly a wooded course, so keep an eye on where you disc lands.
Other Thoughts: Let's get a league formed here soon!
The must-see signature #4 hole with the basket located up a steep hill in front of a cave, has got to be one of the coolest holes in the Southeast!
4 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Long time coming, but worth the wait
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Wow, what a great wooded course right here in a criminally underserved disc golf area.
The park has been here for years and boasts some good fishing in the river, as well as ample picnic areas and playgrounds for the kids. Really good place for a day out with the family. Great hiking trails behind the course too. Many paved parking areas and the first hole is by the last large parking lot on the right. There is a good map and a practice basket by the left hand corner of the lot, and the first tee is at the right hand corner.
The pads are all turf with a well constructed wooded base. There are also composite benches on every single hole, which on a somewhat hilly course is great.
The course is heavily wooded on the front 9 and the back nine is somewhat more open, with a little water in play(just some feeder creeks the main river is never really a concern). Elevation is huge on several holes 4, 9 and a few others as well.
And cool natural features like the Cave on 4 the tree tunnels and varying teepad lengths based on what the hills allow make it a lot of fun.
It may be in contention for the best course north of Atlanta, with only NGCT looking like it could be better.
Great design and plays really well even though most holes aren't that long.
Cons: It's fresh. Once it gets some more play, some limbs fall and the visibility get a bit broken in, it could be close to a 4.5.
It's not long, but even the short holes are fun so I'm not going to count off for that.
Some tees are a little short, and most are elevated so you could come off the end hard, but most of the time it couldn't be much longer.
Cutting off there though, anything else is just nitpicking.
Other Thoughts: I don't know Sam well, but in all of our conversations over the past three years he's brought up this course. He did a great job.
The carved bridges, and raised bits over the low areas are great, every hole has some unexpected challenge and beauty.
I love it and since it's the closest course to my house now, I may have a new home.
Thanks to Sam, the corps of engineers and all involved.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Situated in the Riverside Park Day Use Area alongside the lovely Etowah River, the Etowah DGC features an assortment of well-designed holes within a peaceful wooded setting. Even though the course is a mile or so from Interstate 75, users will be more likely to hear squirrels, birds and wildlife, in addition to the roar of the dam, than noise from the highway.
Most of the teepads are carpeted with artificial turf and offer excellent footing. The new course sparkles with fantastic amenities, including new signs and benches, and the fairways are groomed and well-maintained. Etowah DGC offers several outstanding touches, including markers in the ground indicating the distance every 100 feet on the longest hole, Next Tee signs under the baskets and nice pathways in between holes.
An excellent practice area offers baskets a couple hundred feet apart, allowing for putting and approach shot preparation.
The course makes fantastic use of elevation during the middle part of the round, providing some superb diversity regarding the course design.
Some well-crafted walking areas and steps make travel between holes a breeze. However, the moderate elevation changes will require some stamina.
Plenty of parking is available. (There is a $5 charge per car to enter the park.)
Cons: The course could be susceptible to mud and slippery footing on several holes after a rainstorm. The footing on the hill of Hole #4 is treacherous when dry and could be nearly unplayable when wet. Several other areas that bring extreme elevation into play could be hazardous too.
The fairways on several holes (especially #5 and #7) are extremely tight and could be considered undefined.
The beautiful wood signs near each teepad offer distance, but they don't indicate where the basket is. Not every basket is visible from the teepad. On several holes, first-timers will have to figure out the basket location.
The several-minute walk after Hole #12 could lead to confusion. To reach Hole #13, follow the road until it almost intersects with the main road - the teepad is painted on the right side of the road.
The design of the back nine is inferior to the front nine. While open holes provide diversity, the most open holes got clumped together at the end of the course. And Hole #18 is a slightly disappointing finish. While the last hole returns to the parking lot, the wide open design is under par compared to the rest of the course (and at 404 feet, the final hole should be listed as a par 3, not a par 4).
Other Thoughts: A hole-by-hole commentary: Hole #1 is an excellent starting hole. Wooded on both sides with an open line down the middle, the fairway narrows near the basket and requires an accurate throw or navigation around a couple trees to land close to the basket. Hole #2 is a slight dogleg left, and at just over 200 feet, it's a potential ace run, but a couple trees two-thirds of the way to the basket provide an obstacle. Hole #3 feels like a golf hole with its straight, open fairway lined well by woods on both sides. The teepad is elevated for the longest hole on the course. Hole #4 is extremely picturesque and likely the signature hole. The basket is atop a steep hill with a stony overhang behind that frames the basket.
Holes #5 through #7 are some of the most technical holes on the course, requiring accurate throws through some tight wooded areas that threaten to pinball your disc. Hole #8 is only 185 feet, but the challenging uphill throw necessitates finding a safe line to arrive near the basket. Hole #9 is one of the coolest holes on the course and features teeing off from one side of a hill and across a valley to the other side of the hill. Hole #10 is a tricky hole, with narrow lines and a downhill slope to the right of the fairway. Hole #11 offers another ace run - a downhill, 185-foot run that might be tougher than it looks. Hole #12 and its "teepad" utilize a dead-end road, which is not out of bounds, but there is an OB area to the right that includes a stream. A short walk is required to find Hole #13, which includes another painted mark on the road to indicate the teepad. The hole features a sharp turn to the right and the basket may be difficult to see from the teepad.
The final five holes are the most open holes on the course. Hole #14 is across the road, next to the lovely river. The basket is situated on a small hill with an OB road behind. Hole #15 is wide open but its borders include a thick wooded area to the left and the road to the right. Holes #16 and #17 feature similar design - throwing from an open area toward a basket in the woods. And Hole #18 mirrors the golf-like third hole, wide open but shorter.
The Etowah DGC is a beautiful addition to the Metro Atlanta courses. The work and care that went into building this course is obvious. A well-earned high-five to all involved in its creation.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Fun and challenging layout with multiple lines...throw straight score great. number 4 is the coolest hole in North Georgia. We have fun every time we play....Tee pads are turf! love them
Other Thoughts: super fun
3 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Etowah Disc Golf Course
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This course is like no other close to Atlanta. It feels like you are playing in Blue Ridge or somewhere much more secluded than its proximity to Highway 41 and I-75 would let you believe. It is a very well thought out course with a lot of tight technical shots through the woods, up and down steep hills, and across ravines. It challenges you to throw both forehand and backhand though many holes offer lines for which ever you prefer. There are many different lines you can take if you are creative and sometimes you have to be if you end up in trouble off the tee. Hole 4 I think my favorite of the many "signature holes" at Etowah, throwing across a ravine, down then back up a steep hill with the basket placed at the mouth of a very shallow cave begging you to give it an ace run. I have yet to play a cooler hole anywhere. Overall it is a great experience playing here on a technical , scenic course surrounded by nature. If you are tired of the routine courses around Atlanta and want something unique, challenging and not too far of a drive I highly recommend you give Etowah Disc Golf Course at Riverside Park a try.
Cons: If you are not coordinated be careful out there. There is a lot of elevation change and sometimes errant throws lead to having to throw from akward positions on steep hills.
Other Thoughts: Be careful out there! Be mindful you are not in a park in the middle of the city or the suburbs and there are hazards that entail with that. Be mindful of wild animals especially snakes. The last round I played we saw a decent sized copperhead on hole 1. We left it alone so it left us alone but be careful out there especially picking up discs. And lastly bring plenty of water. Those hills will wear you out haha.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
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