I thought the new course was a very fun and challenging course to play. To me it is definitly way more challenging then the old course. I especially liked the last nine holes. The course can only get better with time. I thought they did a very nice job on it.
The one thing that my buddies and I thought was the park rangers driving around on the cart didn't seem to be very friendly.
other than that I thought the course was great . I wouldn't change a thing. Great Job!
I've been enjoying Black Locust. The longs are championship calibre and the shorts are fun. The redesigned Tunnel holes provide some lefty/righty balance. It has some legitimate par 4s, instead of just a bunch of tough 3s.
The new Kensington course has 27 holes, two practice baskets and a (private) parking lot. The parking lot is private in the sense that it was built for the course and doesn't really service any of the rest of the huge park. So as a practical matter the disc golfers are isolated from the rest of the park. For those of you who played the Tunnel (original) course before, the new parking lot is across the street from the old practice basket.
The practice basket in the trees is superb. It offers a lot of space, shade, obstacles and rolling topography. The practice basket in the trees is the most unique feature of the course. I have never seen the like of it anywhere. It is a very inviting place to practice putting and to work on upshots. As a guy who needs to practice putting, I love it.
The design (by Jim Kenner and irrespective of the rumors, I can take no credit for it) has a loop of 18 which starts and ends at the parking lot. It also has a Championship 9 loop which does the same. The front 18 are mostly precise tunnels. The final 9 holes are long, tough and exacting.
The course is often accused of being a lefty course. Compared to most courses which are righty favorable or highly righty favorable, it is. Which is to say it is mostly balanced but still admittedly lefty favorable.
The lefty holes which exist at Black Locust do not follow the typical trend I see on so many courses. I have found many lefty holes on many courses fall in one of two categories: 1) the short little dink type ('200 to '275 and open) or 2) Poke and Hope (blind, around the corner shot with lots of obstacles and routes which cannot be seen from the tee).
Black Locust has real lefty holes, requiring precision and at times power and precision.
There are 7 holes which are very difficult for one spin but much easier for the other (lefty/righty or counterclockwise/clockwise). 4 benefit the lefties/counterclockwise spins. The other 3 benefit the righties/clockwise spins. The hardest and longest hole on the course is #27 (I don't recall the exact length but it is roughly a '700 tunnel. It winds forward for about '550 then turns 90 degrees left and sharply uphill for the last '150) and is the hardest driving hole I can think of on any course, anywhere, for a lefty. For a lefty the choice is either to pitch it out to the middle '200 (giving up any chance at a 3) or try to throw a cut roller down a narrow, winding fairway with nasty rough on both sides. For a righty it is an exacting, power "S" drive which needs to go well over '400 and land in a tight fairway to set up for a small chance at a 3.
By comparison, the really tough holes for righties (#10, 12, 15, 17) play about '300, except for #12, which is about '350.
There are, btw, 3 holes which give the impression of being lefty favorable but are not (#3, 13, 26). In each case, though the fairway turns to the right, a righty anhyzer works better than a lefty hyzer. This is no complaint, just a description.
As much as the lefty holes will drive some players crazy it is actually what many players need to learn those shots. A long, controlled anhyzer is one of the toughest shots in the game. I predict many fine players will emerge from Kensington over the coming years. Great courses make great players.
Only 5 of the original holes remain but several others use original tee pads and fairways with new basket locations. About half the holes are in totally new areas and the rough is merciless. When the leaves start falling this fall there will be many hours wasted looking for discs which will not be found. Spotters are recommended. On certain holes it may be wise to leave your favorite driver in the bag and pull out a risk disc.
I've only played it a single time, but I found it to be fun and challenging. Nice elevation. And I've with Mark, most courses are designed to accommodate RHBHers with only an occasional hole for LHBHers or RHFHers. This course is much closer to neutral than the average. I look forward to playing it again, if I can find a time when it is not totally crowded.
I don't dislike most of the holes, just found it to be too left-centered. Hurts my elbow to throw it. I can throw those shots, I'd just prefer a mix of all types of shots. I happen to be good at a rhbh hyzer, so it'd be nice to have an opportunity to use it (as equal an opportunity as anyone else's best shot, not more than). I don't feel two wrongs make a right (having a lefty course to balance out all the righty courses). A lot of the rough and seriously blind shots are a problem. I'd must rather see a bathroom than a really expensive police outpost by the first tee.
Overall I don't prefer the course very much, it's not BAD, most of the holes are very sweet. The terrain is excellent. I'd like to see some ivy killed, the old course didn't have any, this one has it unavoidable. Maybe alternate pin placements on some of the altered old ones could solve the only problem here.
Perfect mix of length and difficulty.
The old course had tons of poison ivy. A few players defied the Metropark establishment and carried Round Up for a dozen rounds or so out there in 1999, wiping out most of the poison ivy for 2000 Worlds.
Thanks for the replies... Mark, very good assessment. My first thought on the mixed reviews I saw before was why the heck do RHBH immediately complain about a REAL lefty shot? Try being lefty! I also try not to complain about righty hyzer courses, instead it inspires me to play better and more versatile. I would think rightys would like a challenge too! I love the course, it still has holes that are super hard to par and there are plenty of deuces out there. I am proud to have such a great course my home and I hope to be one of the many that will emerge great.
Nothing wrong with a challenge, nothing wrong with a balanced course offering more of a variety of shot types and an even balance of turns and straight shots. One course could do it all, so you don't have to go play another to test all of your discs out. I knock down an all-rhbh shot course as much in my reviews, too. And I am mostly rhbh.
I wasn't commenting on your post Ben, please do not take offense or defense. There are 4 styles of conventional non overhand throws that differ immensely from one another RHBH, RHBH, LHBH and LHFH. though 2 of each are similar they are not completely the same. I feel Kensington challenges all of them and I am happy that it's conception and design happened the way they did.