Totally Friggin' AWESOME!!!
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: 18 Championship caliber holes (36 really) on a private course with some of the most ideal terrain and scenic quality you can imagine to play on. The variety of open and wooded holes combined with the distance and elevation really test a player's mastery of skill through the air and mental toughness. There is rolling on elevation on most holes which always makes shots more interesting. There are big downhill and uphill bombs, as well as some long holes through the tight woods, and shots around the pond. Baskets are well placed with high risk and reward in most cases. Some huge flags on the baskets where they are blind from the huge elevation change. There were decent tee signs.
The Whipping post has a little more elevation and woods than the Woodshed but a little more fair.
The course was immaculately groomed like a 5 star ball golf course when I played on Memorial weekend. There is tall grass off the fairways on the open holes, but the fairways are really generous like 50' wide, and there was little underbrush off the tighter fairways in the woods, so losing a disc is fairly hard unless it's a really bad shot or really unlucky.
Camping is available on site, so you can spend the weekend. Two very clean portapotties by the shed.
Cons: I've never given a 5 disc rating until now and I won't say there aren't things that could be better here, but this course blows every other course I have played out of the park, and can only get better!
Being nitty...A couple of the holes in the woods could use more defined fairways. Navigation can be a little tough for someone playing the first time.
Don't know if it's con but this course maybe too much a beginner or intermediate player, it really wasn't designed as such. It was designed for the best of the best. With that in mind I know some local beginners that do play the course and do ok, but can get frustrated
Other Thoughts: For anyone traveling through Berkley Springs the experience begins with the drive to the course. It is simply breathtaking overlooking the valley of the mountains with the Potomac river below. The roads do get a little scary as you get closer to the course, but it also adds some thrill and anticipation. In some cases you may have to pull off to the side to let vehicles pass from the other direction. I would not want to drive here in the snow, it's scary enough in the dark, or even daylight. If you are arriving from the west side of Paw Paw the drive is even scarier and not as scenic.
Upon arriving I put $20 in the can in the shed where the money to play and camp goes. I was only here to play both courses one day, but just looking at the property and work that has gone into here I felt obligated to pay more, and have payed more for some dinky courses comparatively. Gabby came out almost immediately to greet me with a smile and give me course map. This map is better than the ones on the website here. She also gave some quick pointers about the course and warned to watch for copperheads as one of her dogs was recently bitten. I know there are also bears, bobcats, and coyotes in the area. I was glad I ran into some old hippy pro I know from Bmore hanging out the shed waiting for somebody to play with since I'd never played here before.
Come here prepared not only as far as your golf game goes, but with enough water and food for your stay. There is hardly anything locally, and you really don't want to venture away for a few good reasons.
This is truly the best disc golf experience I know of, and if you consider yourself a disc golfer this is an absolute must play and totally worth the journey from wherever and I will be back hopefully sooner than later! What more can I say other than Paw Paw or as some call it Wap Wap is totally friggin' AWESOME!!!
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
23 Helpful / 2 Not
My Bum is Red!
Pros: The Paw Paw courses in rural West Virginia are without a doubt one of the top disc golf destinations in the US. Not only is the disc golf fantastic but beautiful scenery and wildlife abounds. Both courses, Woodshed and Whippin' Post have extreme variety in the types of shots, both off the tee, and off the fairway. If you haven't thrown a sidearm, flick roller, tomahawk, etc. during your round, you probably weren't paying attention because you likely were in a position where 'X' shot could have saved you a stroke. This course will expose any weakness in your game, skillwise and especially mentally.
Do you have confidence in all of your shots? Can you make them under adverse conditions (footing, intimidating lines)?
How do you deal with a bad kick? Can you shake it, can you recover from it even under pressure?!?
Like the Woodshed, Whippin' Post also demands that you 'learn it' rather than just play it. Many of the holes have subtle scoring differences that aren't immediately apparent upon first glance. A hole that may appear to be a tight hyzer might in fact yield better scoring to a turnover sidearm. Some landing zones might be in unexpected places requiring several rounds to figure out or careful study of the hole. Some might say that this creates a bit of "home-boy" bias, but putting in a few rounds of work to figure out the course is well worth the time. I'd recommend to play with a player who knows it and you will get an idea of where to attack and where to be conservative. The usual knock on this course is that it is all "luck" because of the tight fairways but you will find players who can consistently shred this course. Luck? I would argue that they put in the work, developed the skills, and mindset to succeed where others lose patience. While I prefer the consistency of Whippin' Post to the Woodshed, you'll find better variety of holes on Woodshed along with a few of the most creative ones such as "Circles".
Certainly one of the classic holes at Whippin' Post, Chloe's Run is a fiendishly long but relatively open (for this course anyway!) bomber hole on the front nine of Whippin' Post. Woods line both sides of the hole and several trees near the basket offer a stiff but penetrable defense. There is a narrowing of the fairway right near the ideal landing zone for the drive creating a classic golf-hole feel. All players will need to weigh bonus distance against increasing odds of a bad lie for the second shot. From a well-placed drive there are several routes to reach the pin from a tight, wrapping RHBH hyzer to the ideal bomb left to right finishing route ideal for a LHBH hyzer or big sidearm. This hole really rewards those who can throw 350+ from both sides as a RHBH drive combination with a sidearm or LHBH can frequently card an impressive birdie. But confidence is needed for both shots because a shank will certainly result in 4 or more strokes.
Cons: As with the Woodshed, new disc technology is starting to erode the design of a couple of the field holes. The open par 4's, while still requiring great shots, are becoming more routine birdies and the upshots are looking much easier. A good example of this can be seen in the awesome finishing hole "Ed is Watching". At 402 downhill, this hole used to allow birdies for only the most confident and skilled players (back in the days of <10 speed discs). Now, to huck an Xcalibur far over the pond is an easy three with birdie potential.
Other Thoughts: As other reviewers have stated, these courses really should be experienced at some point during a disc golfers career.
The owners are some of the best folks you'll ever meet, they have put and continue to devote a big piece of their lives to Paw Paw, so feel free to kick in an extra few $$$ if you appreciate the course!
23 of 25 people found this review helpful.
16 Helpful / 4 Not
The Other half of DG MECCA
Pros: Elevation, Water, woods, wind, huge variety, scenic, the hosts, the neighbors, the STARS :)
Together with the Woodshed, the two courses here at Paw Paw are really the ultimate test of your physical and mental DG skills. The Whippin Post has a couple of the all time classic DG holes anywhere.
The course's namesake is hole #2 - off the tee you throw through about an 18' wide gap about 40' in front of you and across a gulley to a landing zone about 20' round (it's about a 220-250' shot). If you hit that spot, you hang a left to an angle at about 9:30 and go another 350' through a very narrow alley and ever slightly uphill. Even when you hit a perfect drive - your second shot has to be absolutely perfect AGAIN to have a chance at 3. This hole has a HUGE scoring spread and can yield anything from a 3 to a 10.
Hole 7 (Cloe's Run) is a big boomin 800+ foot hole that can also be 3'd, but more often yields 5's, 6's & 7's as placemet is absolutley key to advancing across the big field. Hole 9 is another classic - crossing a huge ravine, and requiring 2 perfectly placed shots to card a 3.
It's hard to say enough about this course OR the Woodshed, as both have so many daunting, picturesque shots.
Cons: It's 100 miles from my house.
Other Thoughts: The brother of the original Paw Paw course (The Woodshed), the Whippin' Post was developed after Spence and Gabi acquired the adjacent property, and got access to an additional 30 or so acres in the mountains. This course plays a stroke or two easier than the WOODSHED, but has the ability to play 10 strokes harder. Accuracy is at a premium on this course, as is the requirement to get off the tee well, Hit an early obstacle, and your chances for big numbers go way up, as recovery efforts are significantly hindered by the extreme topography. Three are a few duece opportunities, but only a few, and they rarely offset the MANY oportunities for 4, 5 or more.
This is a must play for anyone who thinks they've seen a tough course. It's almost sad though - because after 36 holes at Paw Paw, everything else you'll ever see seems sort of well...........easy!
16 of 20 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 1 Not
Paradise for Disc Golfers
Pros: PawPaw is a two-course disc golf paradise unlike anything I know of anywhere else in the nation (and I've played ~200 courses in 20+ states). It's my favorite place I know of to spend a disc golf weekend.
Both The Woodshed and The Whipping Post are awesome, but what is even better is having both courses side by side. And having a hill by the house and barn where you can sit, surrounded by WV mountains, looking down over some of the pivotal and most beautiful holes on both courses makes this an unparalleled place to both watch and play disc golf.
Spencer and Gabi are two of the most generous and welcoming people I know of, and it has been a labor of love on their part -- and on the part of many dedicated volunteers -- to make these courses what they are and to keep them maintained for play.
The Whipping Post has an SSA of roughly 63-64 strokes, and when you're playing competitively, pretty much every hole will change the lineup on your card. Every hole will exact a range of scores from almost any level of players, and that's one of the marks of a great course. No matter how many times you play it, you will always have opportunities you missed and places you know you could have played better. But every time through, different holes will take a bite out of you. Not because of luck, but because every hole is a challenge.
Like it's sister course The Woodshed, The Whipping Post is a great mix of open holes and nasty woods holes, with many true par 4s and tons of elevation changes. Overall, I feel that the Whipping Post is more balanced in terms of giving you a tremendous variety of different types of holes with very little repetition (there are a couple of holes on the Woodshed that inspire a touch of dejavu). There are big uphills, downhills, tight fairways, roller holes, huge dropoffs, shots over valleys, places for max-D bombs, places for touch shots, lots of fast greens, risk/reward challenges, beautiful vistas and everything else you could ask for.
One of the perks of both courses is that every hole has a name and every hole has a history. Play through with a local or someone who's been there since the beginning and they'll tell you more stories than your brain can hold.
The camping opportunities at PawPaw are awesome -- lots of barefoot grass and flat places to pitch a tent. A clean pond for swimming. Enclosed areas for fires are provided, and Spencer usually has firewood and ice he'll sell you at a reasonable price if you've forgotten to bring your own.
If you go out for a tournament weekend, expect a late night of live music in the barn and some of the most beautiful stars you'll see anywhere in the country. The Milky Way is blinding out there in those West Virginia mountains.
Cons: The only cons are that PawPaw is out of the way. But that's part of what makes is so wonderful -- the solitude and the true escape from urban/suburban life. So that's not really a con so much as it is the price you have to pay for solitude. Just make sure to bring everything you need with you for a weekend of camping, because you aren't going to want to leave and it's a bit of a drive even to the nearest convenience store.
The biggest con is having to leave the course after a weekend and return back to regular life. At a course like this, you wish you could stay forever.
Other Thoughts: Course fees are $5/person per day, but I encourage anyone who plays to chip in more than that if they can. One of the great things about PawPaw is that it has some of the most beautiful rolling hills imaginable -- all of which are mowed regularly by Spencer or a volunteer -- and mowing all those acres is an unforgiving task (and more and more expensive with gas prices going up). I encourage everyone to find some other place to save money when you're making a trip out to PawPaw and give what you can to support the course and the generous owners, Spencer and Gabi.
I also encourage people to take friends and family out to the course and just enjoy the weekend. Last fall, I was out there with my brother and sister. My brother plays; my sister doesn't. My brother and I had a great time playing, my sister hiked along some and spent most of the time just relaxing in a hammock under the trees, enjoying the beauty and solitude of the place. On tourney weekends, many folks bring wives/girlfriends/children and there are kids running around and extra adults kicking back, swimming in the pond, and just enjoying the views.
PawPaw is one of the best places I know of to camp -- even for friends who don't play disc golf -- so if you can get there for a weekend, DO. And if you can get in to the West Virginia Open tournament (it's Pro only, but I encourage Ams to play up), DO come play -- it will be the best weekend of disc golf you've ever spent. And if you can, do yourself a favor and take off Friday and Monday -- show up early and leave late and just enjoy paradise and the chance to play with some of the best golfers in the country in the most amazing setting imaginable. See you there.
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 4 Not
Private Disc Golf Heaven!
Pros: Every disc golf course designer should be so lucky as to have this piece of land to work with! The host and hostess are good people. This course will challenge the biggest arms and the top pros. # 18 is a long downhill throw across a pond with the basket just on the other side. Do you lay up? Do you go for it and risk going scuba diving? And the added pressure here when we played was???? About 10 players watching from lawn chairs imploring us to go for the gusto. Sadly, I must admit to total wimpiness. And one of the fews pars I earned that day.
Cons: Paw Paw is a million miles from nowhere. As a below average armed, recreational player, I was out of my league here. Long, long drives with sometimes very narrow fairways and scary roughs combined to send my score spiralling upward.
Other Thoughts: The Paw Paw experience is a must for the serious disc golfer, especially one with a big ole arm. The similarities to the Circle Ranch courses in Wimberly, Texas are amazing. Both are privately owned disc golf meccas. Both feature two monsterous 18 hole courses. Both have amazingly wonderful hosts. Both will bring you crashing to your knees. Both must be experienced! I'd rate the Paw Paw courses as more difficult of the two.
13 of 17 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
Welcome to Heaven
Pros: Your host and hostess. 36 incredibly long holes. The golf! The property itself. The camping. The Barn. The people who play here. The Weddings. The seclusion. And most of all... your host, hostess, and their family.
Cons: The pond isn't heated. Spencer won't wash your car while you play. Men play here without wearing clothes.
Other Thoughts: The guidelines for writing a review say, "Remember, 5 is considered the ultimate. There is absolutely nothing that could be done to improve the course. It is perfect in every possible way"
Here you go folks. Here is your five. This is the disc golf property that is perfect in every possible way. Yeah, it's tough to find the first time you try to find it (it's easy, it's four right turns from Berkley Springs). Once you know how to get there, it's heaven on earth.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.