Hey guys! Glad to see the talk of the coure at Perry and also to hear other's thoughts on it. I can tell you that when Heddy, Leo and I originally walked through the first time with the ranger, the course seemed near impossible to install (tons of work) and we told him as much. The intent was to get traffic to the campground and we told him that it could be done, but being so far out, would need to be worth the trip (ie- championship level, different style course than usual). After MANY walk throughs with him and design layout, we proceeded to talk about how it would come about. I can tell you the Corps (Kyle the Ranger mainly) spent a ton of money and hours on it. We were told they had a grant to improve the parkh (a lot of money), an if they didn't use it, they would lose it. So... we started. I wish I would have taken pictures of what it looked like before any work was done because it is like night and day now. It still needs a lot of fine tuning to get it to our planned layouint, but I can say compared to what we first walked into... it is CLOSE! By close, I don't mean there isn't a ton of work yet to be done, yet, most of the work has already been done... if that makes any sense. It was so wooded and dense when we started, after about half a dozen work days with good turnout, interest wained and the project stalled (somewhat.... Kyle still dumped tons of hours out there while working). Anyway, over the last year, Kent Bryan spearheaded a revival to get legs under this thing and finally got pins installed. I made it out there for the first time in about a year today and was able to play the front side, and damn, it looks sweet. I have attached pictures of what it looked like after only a couple work days and you an see a plain as day difference compared to those posted by Loomis. There were several placements that we had discussed that were either missing, or in the wrong locations from our original plan, but that could be remedied. At one point, when walking through the placements, keep in mind this was with leaves on the trees, we thought par would be 54 in shorts and around 70 in longs. If several pins are installed in spots that we intended, it could still get there. Concerning the 'safe' greens, I agree. Another plan of ours that will likely happen down the road is to core drill some placements into some of the massive boulders around the course creating some slippery putting. Anyway, as Leo mentioned, when we were putting the design together, we had several thoughts...
1. Placement would be key. Course is long, but wouldn't advantage the monkey arms so much as the guy who can throw a 300' drive on a rope.
2. Course would play more like a ball golf course (don't kill me!) in that there were more par 4s, 5s, etc.. that would require you to hit spots, to be able to have a second, third shot, etc... Strategy is going to be very important out there.
3. Utilize the elevation in every fashionable way. uphill, downhill, tunnels, sidehill, ravines, etc... and also have holes facing in every direction so that you would have to account for different wind on nearly every hole.
4. Cut down the trees we know need to come down, dead trees, obviously unneeded trees, small trees, etc... knowing that after pins were installed and play started out there it would become a little more obvious which others need to come down. A little easier to cut a 50' tree than to wait for one to grow...
5. How could we maintain it? This place was a pasture at the bottom and a dense forest up top when we started. Kyle worked out the mowing and spraying for weeds which was a HUGE help. I wish I would havetaken a picture of the looks on everyones faces on our first work day when we started on hole 3! It was like 'ummm, what are we doing here, and how the hell is this possible?'
6. As a general scope, if we were going to go through the 'gazillion' hours to get this in he ground, it better damn well make people want to play it. Give them something that, quite honestly, I can't even compare it to in this region. Maybe up in michigan? Still a little to early to say if the mission was accomplished both on our end, and the Corps goal of promoting the campsite, but I think it's a damn good start.
Our hope is that by having baskets in the ground, it will light a fire and get more people out to our work days to make this thing a real beauty. DDDC and new club president Kent Bryan is going to have another work day out there this saturday for those that want to help. You can call him at 785-249-0803, or myself (Bren Nordgren) 785-608-8688 for more info. All feedback is appreciated as we want to make this the most enjoyable playing experience possible. Oh, I forgot to metion, there is actually a bar right across the street from the parking lot that I believe is open and running (I haven't been in). The ranger said they had pretty decent food? Other than that, pack a lunch.
Here is the pics I took after a couple work days for reference as to how much has been done since.....http://s674.photobucket.com/user/lsdiscs/library/#/user/lsdiscs/library/Lake%20Perry%20Course?page=1&_suid=1365131449840031520438022555003