16 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: 1) Incredible practice area with all of the types of baskets represented as well as plenty of angles and approaches to be thrown. I didn't warm up (because I already played Lake Olmstead and had to make sure I was able to finish all 3 courses) but if I was playing a tourney this would be greatly appreciated.
2) Designed by one of the premier designers in the game John Houck. I played a lot of his courses last year when I was in Texas and thoroughly enjoyed all of them. He has a knack for challenging you with all your shots.
3) Pavillion and picnic tables are available along with a soda machine outside. There are restrooms inside the IDGC and a couch to sit down on too. Check out the pro-shop while you are there and help support the PDGA through other ways than just your annual dues. Check out the history of the sport and our founder Steady Ed Headrick in the Disc Golf Hall of Fame
4) Scorecards and maps available in the pro shop . . .always a bonus on a world class course that you have not played before. There also is a small mailbox on the course map at the entrance to the course) that usually would have maps and scorecards in there too in case the pro shop isn't open.
5) Nice big sign and map along with sponsors and contributors to the course listed on another sign. I love the entrance gate that you walk through to get to the course.
6) Excellent use of distance variation as a design element. There are all sorts of different distances with multiple holes over 700, 800, and even 900' out here so you need all your discs in your bag. You will also never have the same shot twice which is awesome. SO many courses get stuck on the 275-300' shots where you can only have so many hyzer shots before the holes become repetitive. Here the distances vary so much you never have the same shot on two holes.
7) Very clean woods . . . meaning Jason works very hard to keep the peripheral areas free of fallen limbs and debris. It is pretty rare that you see something that is in play off the fairway and that is greatly appreciated and it helps make the course look just that much better.
8) They did an excellent job keeping the trees that frame fairways and cleaning out the ones that do not need to be there. The fairways are very fair but they do still make you make the shot.
9) Excellent variety in shot shaping on this course. There were a lot of different shots off the tee but your recovery shots bring even more shots into play . . . I love throwing different shots all day . . . it keeps things from feeling boring.
10) .Very nice grippy trapezoidal concrete just like on Steady Ed.
11) Excellent place for the Yellow banded Discatchers. Just like the Steady Ed course they have the thee flags on top of the Discatchers too. They are much easier to spot in the dense woods than any other basket.
12) There is a ravine that is roped off as OB on multiple holes on this course. This is a feature that you rarely see because no one wants to spend the time roping off an area that constantly needs tweaking .. . but they do here at the IDGC. This way there is no question whether you are OB or not and this is one rule that can be very confusing unless you really understand the rules.
13) They have the nicest rain shelter that I have ever seen. It was big and it had seating inside. It rivaled the one at Blue Ribbon pines, but this one seemed like it was nicer and newer.
14) This course loops back at the end of 9 holes to the parking area and you might need it in summer. Fortunately for me it was a nice 55 degree day and overcast so it was no big deal, but this is certainly a positive during the Georgia summer.
15) Shot shaping here is a lot of fun because they often times give you plenty of room to work your discs. You might have to hit key spots in the fairway but you can generally work your disc either direction on at least one shot per hole. It just depends on how close to the tee the fairway bends and if you can keep the disc in the fairway initially.
16) This is the most open . . . and I use the word "open" as a relative term . . . because this is the IDGC in the Georgia woods. There are no wide open holes, but the fairways are wider and more "fair" than the other two courses. You do not have to be pinpoint on WR Jackson . . . you just need to hit the gaps and control your disc at the end of the flight to score well. With that said . . . there are still quite a few tight holes on this course . . . but the true fairway line is well defined.
17) (I apologize in advance I was watching this video today) As Timmy Gill says in Clash I (Rennaisance Gold) . . . this is the future of our sport with Par 4's and Par 5's. This is where or sport needs to go . . it needs placement shots and true risk/reward shots where if you want to throw 450' you will have to execute a much tougher shot than someone throwing a two 250' shots.
Cons: 1) The hole maps are very generic here . . .and this is super nitpicky . . .because the fairways are wide enough here on most holes that the simple "outline" of the fairway is just about good enough. There are way less trees on this course (at least in the fairway) so it isn't like on Steady Ed where there are key trees scattered all through the fairways, there are treed areas (rough) and turfed areas (fairways) and rarely do these areas intersect with each other.
2) The distance here is a little demanding for beginners. There is no way any beginner could withstand a round here and even though the course is designed with Advanced and Pros in mind I like courses to be accessible to all. They could easily put in short tees at about half the distance of the long tees so that beginners would have a chance to play and even enjoy what this type of course is like. I still had fun because I knew what I was getting into and I can execute good shots . . . it just might take me 3 or 4 or 5 to get to the basket.
3) The only thing I noticed that could really have more attention paid to it is the OB line along the ravine. While I appreciate that it is there . . . there were a few placed where some erosion may have happened and the rop is actually hanging down at the base of the ravine . . .creating confusion (not really a conflict of the rule but confusion). This is more of an issue because I come from a long history in golf course maintenance where the routine maintenance is taken to another level. If you paint a line that is the line, if there is no line the line is between the posts. And in this instance the intent is to keep the OB line above the ravine so there is no question if you are in bounds or out of bounds. But the intent is also a safety issue where you do not want someone trying to recreate a lie on the banks of a ravine (so in essence the rope should always be above the edge of the ravine, but there were a few places where I noticed the rope hanging down in the ravine making a true "drop" impossible to recreate.
Other Thoughts: I know a lot of this courses pros were basically the same as Steady Ed's review, but there were also a lot of other things I noticed too . . . so if the review sounds familiar it is because I used the same wording to accomplish the same thing for this course, but there should be plenty of other useful info from my review too.
This course is the most unique (as compared to the other two on site) course at the IDGC. It is through the woods but it is LOOOOOONG and the fairways are often time very wide. Sure you need to avoid the peripheral areas but you are more likely to really get your disc out there on this course. There are all sorts of landing areas but depending on what you choose to throw you will have to pick you landing areas. I found it hard to "layup" and chose my favorite driver on most holes . .. sometimes I was rewarded by threading the needle, but often times I was punished and had to throw out to the fairway as opposed to trying for a miraculous recovery.
I would rank this course 3rd of the three courses but only because I do not have distance as a strength in my game. I feel I am accurate but there is no way for me to take my throw to the next level and pump one out there really. I am satisfied throwing my 275' on any given throw. I just have no difference between golf distance and pure throwing distance. I know it is designed for gold level players and I am far from I so it is less enjoyable for me. I can totally see how the advanced and pro level players might enjoy this more than other courses at the IDGC.
16 of 17 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 4 Not
Bring your control to go with that Big D...
Pros: With over half the holes clocking in at 500' or more (and hole 2 at 499), the Jackson course is plenty long, but still manages to squeeze in some variation in hole lengths with 4 holes in the 200-300' range and 2 more between 300-400'. Strikes a good balance between being well wooded and just open enough to air it out and let fly (if only I could), but able to punish the foolhardy or errant shot for straying from the fairway. The holes on the Jackson course are quite well conceived and manage to be challenging enough for pros, yet inviting for intermediate players.
• Truly a gold level course (which kicked my red level butt) with legit par 4's & 5's. Many strategically placed bends really do emphasize placement as much as distance. Staying on the fairway alone isn't enough to score well. Unless you have both, the distance and control to put a tee shot onto the fairway beyond where it bends, you really need to hit the landing zone to set yourself up nicely for the next shot. Landing short, long, or on the wrong side of the fairway, can leave you a tough shot that could easily end up adding a stroke for that hole.
• Nicely groomed, well defined fairways typically offer at least a couple of routes, with some obvious landing spots.
• Wonderful mix of hole shapes to maintain your interest and exercise your entire shot-making portfolio.
• Mostly flat on the front 9, the terrain and stream comes into play on the back 9, especially on some of the shorter holes.
• Navigation is OK with next tee signs, great tee markers and course map to help find your way, but course layout left me wondering where the next tee was a few times. Not as foolproof as the Headrick course, but certainly not bad enough to list as a con.
• The shelter just before 8's tee is a great place to take a break from the sun or rain, and refresh and recharge before setting out again - something I'd recommend before teeing off on that 900'+ monster.
• Bright yellow Innova "chasitity belts" are easily the most visible targets out there, and make things easier for visitors (let's face it, this place is gonna get visitors).
IDGC Bonuses like:
• Great tee pads: spacious and grippy even when wet.
• Best practice putting green you'll find anywhere.
• Benches and wonderful signage at every basket.
• PDGA HoF and Pro Shop, tournament pavilion with drink machines.
• Boot cleaners located just outside the Pro Shop to brush the mud and dirt from your shoes.
• Onsite camping
Cons: Cons: As expected, things were done pretty well here, so there aren't many cons to list.
• Course layout seems a bit strange, resulting in some long walks between some holes that interrupt flow of the course.
• I don't mind pay to play, but that's in addition to the park entrance fee - still worth it to play these courses.
Other Thoughts: Personally, I didn't enjoy the Jackson as much as the Headrick or Warner, there's no doubt this is an excellent course and part of a phenomenal facility. Quite frankly, it's intended to challenge those with more skill than I've got, so I can't knock it because it kicked my ass. I have to rate it based on the fact that it's intended to create score separation among top level players... something I would say it should excel at. A wonderful course that can stand on its own, it comes with all the plusses this location offers. Kind like what Leviathan would be if those guys had these resources.
11 of 15 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Wide with room for Glide
Pros: -Large Tee Pads
-Great tee signs with picture & distances
-Very nice Innova baskets
-Good flow to course(#10 tee is just behing IDGC. So you have a chance to stop at your car half way through the round)
-Fairways are just that Fair, yet very challenging still.
-Next tee signs
-Elevation(Ups & Downs & in between)
-IDGC clubhouse/Pro shop on site
-Pavillion to sit under
-Drink vending machine
-Amazing warm-up area behind clubhouse
-IDGC staff is very welcoming
-DG Hall of Fame on site
-The area is completely dedicated to the courses.
Cons: -This course is a long round of golf. I was dragging towards the last few holes. Be prepared.
-Pay to play
-Raining while I was there
-Pretty out of the way to play on a regular basis.
Other Thoughts: This was my second favorite of the 3 courses located at the IDGC complex. I felt this course was a bit more forgiving on errant drives than Warner & Headrick courses. This added to the width of the majority of the fairways. Don't get me wrong this is still a very challenging course. Just feels a little less dangerous than the others.
Overall, it's another amazing course in a Disc golf only area of the park. Get down here and play on your next vacation!
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Longer than long
Pros: This is the longest of the three IDGC courses, and its length is one of its greatest assets. There are several very long holes, with true par 4s and 5s to challenge you.
Each hole has an informative tee sign, nice sized concrete tee pad, and flag at top of the basket for easier viewing from a distance. Plenty of next tee signs to aid in navigation, but a course map is recommended for first timers. The fairways are well defined and give you multiple ways to reach the basket, to fit your game.
There is a good mix of elevation, and a small creek winding its way through several holes.
The course is well maintained and very clean. Nice touches, like water coolers spread through out, that add to the overall course enjoyment. There are two nine hole loops that start at the HQ building, which has a pro shop, bathrooms and snack bar. The course is part of the IDGC complex, so there are two other courses available, with plenty of parking.
Cons: Single tee and single basket course, limits it's flexibility and can be over whelming to intermediate or lower level players.
A few holes near the creek were maybe a little too close to each other, but nothing to dramatic.
Some of the hole distances on the tee signs and course map didn't match.
Other Thoughts: This is the longest course I've ever played on, and was the first of the three IDGC courses I played. I was expecting a lot from this course, since it is part of the IDGC, and it didn't disappoint.
Like the other two courses on site, it was well designed and had a professional look and feel about it. Definitely worth the beating it will give you while playing it.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
16 Helpful / 1 Not
John Houck: Disc Golf Course Design God!!!
Pros: This is the longest of the three courses on site and also the flattest and has more holes with open lines and less rough. Don't expect to be able to grab your high speed disc and throw some huge distance lines because you are going to need to throw in the fairway or pay the price. John Houck knows his double fairway/double landing zone holes and he has utilized this here. Unlike some of my fellow reviewers I actually like the starting six holes all being par fours of varying length and bend. I also like how some of the middle par fives were sandwiched in with the longer par three holes and followed by the shorter par three holes. This creates a strange flow which I actually like as it kind of keeps you off balance and out of rhythm. This is one of those courses where you start to figure it out over time as to where you need to land and which holes to be aggressive at to score well. Fairways are much more defined on this course than some of the holes on the other two, especially the Jim Warner course and punishment here is swift, strong and fair in my opinion. The variety of distances and doglegs with fair landing zones were all well thought out and more closely resembling Golf (ball) course design ideas.
Cons: Really the only con, as minor as it might be is the 370 feet or so par four hole three. This is a dogleg left with a tight fairway that doesn't really allow elite players to showcase what they can do off of the tee. This is really the only clunker on the course and it is annoying. You can't really do anything other than layup and then throw another short approach to the basket. It is listed as a par four but any advanced player will recognize what kind of hole it is and be able to get a three on this hole very frequently. Either some trimming for another route needs to be done or the basket should be moved in to create a better hole and be a par three as well which would cut the six par fours in a row to start the course in half to alleviate some of the people complaining who aren't fond of the way the course starts. Really I don't have too many more cons really worth mentioning and I'd rather not get extremely nit-picky.
Other Thoughts: This is an amazing course and a must play for any serious golfer looking for challenge. This course is amazing by itself but combined with the other two courses on site it makes for a really fun day or weekend. I think I like this course just slightly better than the Steady Ed course but it is really close for me. Either way you really can't go wrong here unless you can't take the distance or punishment. This course actually makes me want to rate other courses a half a point lower!
16 of 17 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: The course plays through rolling hills in a dense forest. There are enough trees and underbrush that errant shots are definitely punished, but the fairways are reasonable and offer plenty of room to hit your line. The course is long, with lots of multi-shot holes which makes it a different challenge than most other courses. I love having to throw a second drive on a hole, it makes you think a lot more about shot placement and setting up for your approach. There are some shorter holes mixed in for variety, which keeps the course from getting repetitive.
There's a great mix of hole shapes, you'll need every shot in your bag to be successful. Distance is rewarded, but not over accuracy, every hole punishes a missed line. Many holes have multiple fairways, offering very different ways to approach the hole, each with it's own risk/reward to consider. A stream comes into play on several holes, and makes a few pin placements tricky with lurking ob. There are good signs showing alternate pin placements and hole layout and distance, and the concrete pads were in great shape.
Cons: There are some long walks between holes, most were well marked but it definitely breaks up the flow. There were a couple sections of the course where multiple holes in a row were similar lengths making it feel just a little repetitive, especially the three short holes in a row in the middle of the course.
Other Thoughts: This is definitely a tough course, and will wear you out. Beginners will find it long and tough to the point of frustration, I don't know too many new players that would have much fun on this one. Experienced players will find great challenge and variety, you'll need long controlled distance on a variety of lines to score well. Combined with the other great courses and the amenities at the IDGC, this is a wonderful disc golf destination.
10 of 11 people found this review helpful.
WR Jackson and the IDGC
20 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: [The WR Jackson Course]- It is the closest thing to the feel of a ball golf course (not that disc golf needs to, but here it just made disc golf seem perfect). Like ball golf there are pars of 3, 4, and 5. The fairways are long, but pretty wide for a course cut through the woods, and have many giant trees all lining both sides of the fairway. Several holes play along or over a creek that tends to bring discs down to it. The fairways were neatly mowed, and off the fairways was not disc-losing rough, but stroke-losing pitch out rough. I am a huge fan of the flags on top of the baskets to help you find the target, especially at those distances- again like ball golf. (Look at map II on this site and it looks like a ball golf map!)
The first thing you will notice is the total length, but don't be intimidated, treat the holes as par 4's and 5's. It is not just a contest to see who can throw the farthest, but you must place each shot carefully to set up the next one. This prevents the length from becoming mundane and actually makes it very interesting. Long bombers will have no advantage here if they play careless or miss their lines. And there are some shorter holes mixed in to give you a little break. This is the best variety of length on a single course that I know of with holes ranging literally everywhere from 240' - 920' including some in the 200's, 300's, 400's, 500's, 600's, 700's, 800's and 900's!
Every hole is high quality and there are no throw-aways or fillers. It loops back to the clubhouse after 9 holes, which is nice because you will need a little break! When you finish your round you will have feelings of both accomplishment and satisfaction. You will be a little tired, but you will want to play it again because you know you could have done better or at least have tried some different approaches.
[The IDGC Complex]- The IDGC is just a short 30 minute drive north of Augusta. You know you about to have a special experience upon entrance of the large and beautiful park and you see big signs pointing the way to the disc golf area. The courses are in an area of the park that is dedicated solely to disc golf- no other activities come close to interfering. The clubhouse here includes scorecards, maps, merchandise, restrooms, and of course the Museum and Hall of Fame (so plan some time to spend inside as you take a break between the courses). Inside there are places to sit and relax and watch disc golf DVD's if you want, and during certain times there appears to be a snack bar. I recommend bringing a lunch in case the snack bar is closed and relaxing at one of the picnic tables at the tournament pavilion. There are several restaurant options just a few miles back south on the highway to the IDGC as well.
Behind the clubhouse is the largest putting practice area I have ever seen. It had about half a dozen baskets of all types spread out (reminded me of a putting green for ball golf). The 3 amazing courses here all begin and end at the same parking lot, so once you park your car it is literally just a few steps to everything. The start of each course is clearly marked with a decorated entrance way and a large color commemorative sign inviting you to play it. Concrete tees and detailed color tee signs are on every hole. I love that each course here is extremely well-designed and well-maintained, yet each has its own personality. Each course uses a different style/color of basket to differentiate it from the others (and to give some representation to multiple companies.) Every hole was completely fair as the fairways were mature and well-defined (which is amazing and shows how much work has been done here since these courses are not that old.)
Cons: [The Course]- On some of the shorter holes along the creek some of the fairways were a bit steep and it seemed that both luck and skill was needed to avoid the creek. There are a couple of longer than normal walks to the next tee (like 7 to 8), but use the map, and there are more than enough signs pointing you in the right direction.
[The Complex]- You do have to pay to enter park and then pay to play courses, but this is such a nice place and it has so much to offer that it will easily be worth it for most people. In my review in 2011, the hole distances did not seem accurate at all, and there was a lot of discrepancy between the scorecard, tee sign, and course map. However, I felt this had been addressed and improved upon. I didn't pay a whole lot of attention to exact distance this time since few baskets are reachable from the tee anyways.
Other Thoughts: [The Course]- It was not my favorite course at the IDGC (Ed for me was #1), but I objectively think is the best course here. Challenging, demanding but with well-manicured grounds keeping on and off the fairways. I personally do not just hand out ratings of 5.0, but I can see absolutely no reason why this course is not worthy. It is the complete package of excellent design, in a great setting, challenging for the pros but not impossible for us amateurs, plus the amenities and other courses on site push it over the top. As a bonus, it is rare that all this (like Idlewild) comes on a public course, where it seems so many of the better courses emerging now-a-days are privately run.
[The Complex]- I was exhausted when I finished all 3 courses, but I thoroughly enjoyed my day here. You can play them all in one day or plan on spending a couple of days here. The courses are open all day, but the clubhouse is only open certain hours (from 9-5 I think). During off-hours there is place to pay on the honor system. I highly recommend the IDGC as a national disc golf destination. (I liked it better than the complexes at Lemon Lake, Mason County, and yes even Highbridge.)
20 of 20 people found this review helpful.
Favorite course at the IDGC
4 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: i wish more new courses were designed like this one but I understand the terrain and amount of acreage really makes this course spectacular in addition to the vision from the course designer. My favorite course at the IDGC with a great mix of par 3s, 4s and 5s and continues to improve. #8 can be brutal if you do not play it smart and during my visit in May 2013 a shelter has been built on #8 teepad which is a good place for a rest prior to playing this long and sometimes frustrating hole. Also #18 is a beast if you do not get off the teepad. I have watched some of the top players in the world play this hole and they appear to only try to get through the initial treeline in a safe spot to get to the turn at the top of the hill for a chance at a 4. Regardless 5 is a great score for me on this one. Course appears to be for big arms but I feel it is played better by players who understand placement shots instead of throwing 500' on every hole. #14 is my favorite hole and the transistion of short holes with birdie opportunities between #11 - #13 helps with diversity after some previous long holes.
Cons: Note really a con but after rain there are some slick spots which can appear in fairwarys due to the hills so be aware of footing. Also, it appears difficult to get a run up when you are in #18 fairway after the tee shot because the grade of the slope is severe. I am not a course designer but I image there is nothing that can be done to prevent.
Other Thoughts: This is pay to play. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing people who do not check in to play on pay to play courses so please pay the greens fee to ensure courses like this will be around in the future. Also, plan to spend a few days in the area. The campground is great and close by. Worth the daily park fee.
4 of 9 people found this review helpful.
16 Helpful / 1 Not
THIS is what golf should be!
Pros: The quality of the course can pretty much be summed up with the number of times I said to myself: "THIS is what golf should be!". From the start to the finish, almost all of the holes on this course are solid. Solid design, solid distances, and just plain smart design. If you have a slightly easier tee shot on a par 4, be sure that you will need to land in a smaller landing zone or that your approach shot will be a bit more difficult. When you have to hit a super tight window off the tee, rest assured you will reap the rewards when you hit it.
One of the techniques Mr. Houck uses frequently is a moderately narrow, but open fairway with a landing zone between 300 and 350' and then a sporadically treed fairway between 250 and 350' to the pin. This is a really great formula for rewarding those who can A) Keep their drive on the fairway and B) Achieve adequate distance while doing so. I really wish I had multiple rounds on this course so that I could start figuring out where my ideal shots should land and how aggressively I should pursue my tee shots.
This course would easily stand on its own (5.0) but being in the IDGC facility elevates this course amongst the best out there.
Cons: My cons almost entirely rest in the stretch of holes 11-13. My two points about this strech is firstly that having 3 of the total of 6 par 3 holes consecutive just throws you for a loop right in the middle of the course. Similarly, you begin the course with 6 par 4's in a row - while the design might not have accomodated it, more temporal variety of holes would have been ideal.
More importantly, while they are fun to throw, several of the shorter holes (mostly 13) in this strech are on slopes which make safe landing a spin of the roulette wheel. While there are methods for sticking to the steep slope, off the tee, I feel like some of these landing areas are a bit unreasonable.
Pretty few cons for an amazing course!
Other Thoughts: Although I think I prefer the Steady Ed long course, I think a strong case could be made that this course is the best of the bunch. With slightly more forgiving fairways, this may be the least stressful course at the facility.
16 of 17 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: This is the premiere course at the IDGC and is designed for the pros. Yet a patient amateur can play here.
With its mostly long fairways that are lined with big trees it is a beauty. Though they are mostly long and mowed there are obstacles to work around such as single or clumps of tress, doglegs, "s" curves, water,and elevation.
Baskets 11, 12, 13, and 16 are under 300' and provide a chance at an ace run. Albeit a slim one, but a chance.
You will encounter water via a stream that is situated down in a gulch on holes 3, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, and 18. These are some of the best water hazards I have played. Long slopes with the basket often in a spot where the disc can and will roll into the water. A lot of O.B.'s will be had here. The reason I liked them is because they flowed with the course. Many water hazards seem to be just thrown in so the course designer can say there is a water hazard.
Concrete tee pads, plenty of benches , and trash cans make the course workable.
Pin placement was phenomenal. Each pin provided a huge challenge without being a pain in the @!#$% to get too. Again they did not just stick the pin in some trees to make the putt difficult. The placement flowed with the hole but required plenty of work to get you into a good putting position.
Cons: With the fairway on 8 along a road and the tee for 18 below the 16th tee on "Steady Ed" I could not go a 5 here.
Have a map. There are some directional signs to the next tee but some are missing and the next tee is not always in sight.
Other Thoughts: This course achieves its goal. It is a Gold level Pro course.
As a decent amateur player I can play this course but my score will reflect my play level. So be patient and you will enjoy it here.
Bring plenty to drink.
With this being here at the International Disc Golf Center the atmosphere and amenities add to the course.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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