North Carolina’s Best Disc Golf Courses: Unveiling the Ultimate Fairways in the Tar Heel State

The best disc golf courses in North Carolina span the entire spectrum of topography, from the Smokey Mountains to the swampy areas around Camp Lejeune and the beautiful beach life in the Outer Banks. You’ll find plenty of variety in the Tar Heel State. 

The Charlotte area is the beating heart of the sport in North Carolina, with a seriously heavy concentration of disc golf courses, many of them elevating the state to the 5th best for disc golf in the U.S., at least according to UDisc. 

Most of my family on my mother’s side settled in the Asheville area centuries ago and remained there ever since. There are eight courses in Asheville alone, and my travels up there for the occasional Thanksgiving or Christmas afford me some serious disc golf time. 

My Picks for the Best Disc Golf Courses in North Carolina

Though I’ve played the courses in Asheville (the 7th largest disc golf destination in North Carolina), the state has nearly 400 disc golf courses. That’s a lot of territory to cover, and many of those courses are outstanding. Unfortunately, we can only list so many. 

While I pay attention to ranked courses, some tend to slip under the radar. That’s why I place an emphasis on how well a course is laid out. Is it a good spot for beginners? Does it feature sensible fairways? In other words, playability is foremost in my analysis, not necessarily popularity. 

  1. Nevin Park, Charlotte (Best Overall)
  2. Leigh Farm Park, Durham (Best Beginner’s Course)
  3. Hornet’s Nest Park, Charlotte (Best Challenge)

This trio of disc golf courses is as close as you can get to disc golfing perfection. It covers the range of the best disc golf courses in North Carolina, with a fantastic course for new players to build their skills and mold the throws they will need on more complicated courses. I also threw in what I felt was one of the most challenging courses in the state. 

Nevin Park, Charlotte (Best Overall)

Features

  • 18 Holes
  • x3 water hazards
  • 7,412’ to 8,419’ course length
  • Concrete tees
  • DISCatcher baskets
  • Signage on all 18 holes
  • Multiple tee and pin locations

Nevin Park is the best disc golf course in North Carolina, and it’s also a complicated one. It’s not the most challenging, but even veterans of the game won’t walk away with an easy game. The majority of the course is wooded, but the fairways are streamlined with innovative designs. 

It’s full of tight lines, dog legs, and trees to contend with, and it will force disc golfers to carefully finesse their throws to stay inbounds. Elevation changes are moderate, but the best part about the course is that no single hole has the same look. Each time you step into the box, you’re confronted with a different throw. 

Places like this necessitate a full range of discs in your bag, including plenty of overstable, stable, and understable midranges and fairway drivers. Though there is a healthy mix of short and long shots, you probably won’t find much use for high-speed drivers at Nevin Park. 

Leigh Farm Park, Durham (Best Beginner’s Course)

Features

  • 18 holes
  • x2 water hazards
  • Multiple tee and pin locations
  • DISCatcher baskets
  • Mixed tees (turf and concrete)
  • 3,450’ to 7,391’ course length
  • Heavily wooded

The best part about Leigh Farm Park is that you can make it as easy or complicated as you want. The amateur and pro tee boxes make a huge difference, as you can see in the above disparity in course length. For beginners, all the amateur shots are short, though each hole presents its own challenge.

The course is heavily wooded, but it doesn’t have that frustrating level of undergrowth that disc golfers always fear. You won’t lose your disc here unless it’s camouflaged. There are 18 holes, but the park contains two courses, with each course sharing 12 fairways from the other. 

The way this course is designed, you can start here as a beginner, progress to the intermediate, and become quite good without ever playing on another course. The expert design takes advantage of the local topography to create unique and increasingly challenging fairways. 

Hornet’s Nest Park, Charlotte

Features

  • 5,615’ to 9,235’ course length
  • 18 holes
  • x2 water hazards
  • DISCatcher baskets
  • Concrete tees
  • Pro and amateur tee pads
  • Half and half woods and open

Hornet’s Nest’s high degree of challenge is the only thing that separates it from the top spot on our list. This is a fantastic course for intermediate and advanced players to test and refine their capabilities. The elevation changes aren’t extreme, but the course makes very good use of them throughout the fairways. 

There’s no such thing as two holes that look alike. Every hole presents its own challenge. This is also one of the better-maintained courses out there, along with plenty of signage and navigation help between baskets. There are several baskets that are elevated or up on the side of a slope, so you have to be very careful as to how you approach them. 

Nest, Web, and DGPT are the three primary layouts, which are nothing more than terms for amateur, intermediate, and advanced tees. You can tell that the design of the course didn’t just feature three tee pads at varying distances. They’re strategically placed, along with tight fairways and a number of highly challenging approaches. 

Ashe County Park, Jefferson

Features

  • 18 holes
  • x3 water hazards
  • High-degree of elevation changes
  • 4,834’ to 6,992’ course length
  • DISCatcher baskets
  • Multiple tee and pin locations
  • Mixed tee types

This is the type of course where you will spend a lot of time moving up and down hills. The elevation changes aren’t extreme, but they are numerous and more than enough to alter the way you approach every shot. Every basket features pro and amateur boxes, and the pin locations are changed with moderate frequency.

Fortunately, there is plenty of signage throughout, showing you where each basket should be located as well as directing you to the next hole. This course requires focus. There’s not a lot of undergrowth, but the trees are numerous enough to slap down a disc, and many of the fairways are narrow, requiring tight, controlled shots. 

If you fear water hazards, hole #5 is actually an island, so good luck with that. Fun stuff. As far as the other water hazards, you’ll have to get creative. For instance, hole #7 has water running down the right side of the fairway and a tree directly in front. 

Rock Ridge Park, Pittsboro

Features

  • 5,246’ to 6,938’ course length
  • Pro and amateur pads
  • DISCatcher baskets
  • Rubber tees
  • 18 holes
  • Quiet and secluded
  • Single pin locations

This is a relatively new course, and though I wouldn’t call it “beginner-friendly,” it has much wider fairways than some of the other courses on this list, and the overall layout is a fantastic design. This course is located in the “Triangle” area, which is huge in the North Carolina disc golf community. 

It’s a wooded course, with heavy underbrush in some areas and cleaner ground cover in others. The fairways are often tight but fair. Some consider it to be a championship layout that also manages to toe the line between advanced and beginner players. 

It’s a quiet, secluded park, so if you need quiet when you’re loading up in the box, you’ll find it out here. There are plenty of signs indicating what hole to go to next, so there’s never a feeling of being lost or getting out of rhythm if you happen to get into a flow. 

Richmond Hill, Asheville

Features

  • 18 holes
  • Professional-level course
  • DISCatcher baskets
  • Mixed tee types
  • 4,957’ to 5,915’ course length
  • Multiple pin locations
  • Heavily wooded and hilly

I had to bring this course up as I consider myself to be a moderately decent recreational player. I have to say; I loved this course despite the fact that it’s brutally punishing for the unprepared. However, it’s so well laid out that even beginners can come out, have a good time, and quickly learn the harder lessons the game has to offer. 

The course’s best feature is its use of elevation. It’s rare to find a course that uses elevation changes throughout the fairways that force disc golfers to mold their throws perfectly. I had to break out my best gliders for some of these throws just to hold that height a little longer, skimming the top of a hill. 

The woods are heavy, but the fairways are tight, well-defined, and fair. The only drawback to the course is some of the boxes were just cleared dirt or rocks. The rocks, especially, can be treacherous if you put a lot of torque into your drives.

Final Putt: Best Disc Golf Courses in North Carolina

The best part about parsing through the best disc golf courses in North Carolina, or any state for that matter, is discovering some of the new and unique features used in other states (as opposed to my own). As the game continues to grow, we’ll continue to get good and bad courses, some more unique and challenging than others. 

North Carolina is a beautiful state, regardless of where you live or visit. With nearly 400 courses throughout the state, it’s highly likely you have a course near you, no matter where you’re at.

Leave a Comment