9 Helpful / 1 Not
Evermeans and HARDwoods!
Pros: A unique blend of deep hardwood woods and then fields interspersed with plenty of cedars and occasional deciduous trees. A creek comes in play on some of the holes. This course will refine your game. You have to be able to roll here, line shape, long controlled drives, tricky approaches, and have an arsenal of get out of trouble shots. A very solid course that I am sure develops some excellent players. I particularly enjoyed the hardwood holes, especially hole #3 a long downhill drive through tight woods. Course runs in a series of 9 hole loops back at main lot. Practice basket with plenty of room to practice putts and midrange shots....thats rare so much space around a practice basket. I liked that. 2 tees per hole and appears multiple pin locations. Disc golf only environment with the only traffic being deer herds. I hit a long putt and a doe and fawn were my only witnesses. It's clear a lot of work has been done here.....that cedar field looks like prime multi flora rose territory but I did not get plucked by a thorn all day. I have to tip my cap to whoever clears and maintains the course.
Cons: Tees were rather narrow for my 6'3" frame. (I prefer to X-STEP and not x-step) Course generally lacking any tee signs. (no biggie to me) If you print out a map beforehand your fine here otherwise you can wander a bit at times. The main problem I had with the course was the sense of deja vu I had here. For instance, holes 4,5,13 and 14 are basically long wooded fairways with a creek running to the left. While these are great holes I had a sense of didn't I just do this. Once out of the woods and in the cedar fields the sense of Groundhog Day is ever present.....seems every hole has some cedars some trees and your basically making the same choice...keep it low or roll. All of the holes require a lot of skill but it just seemed to become repetitive after awhile. Outside of hole #3 nothing really jumps out at you on this course. Solid but unspectacular. Kind of like the girl next door.......not really any sexy amazing holes but rather solid nice holes here. I really thought there were plenty of places on this course for some big drives up/down the steep banked valleys. The walk from 14 to 15 comes to mind. Maybe a few more high risk along the ridge type shots with penalty going way down the valley below.Instead most wooded holes creep along the valley floor and your staring at massive unused elevation shifts all around you but never in play. Perhaps just my taste but I wanted more drama out there. I found the cedar filled field to be a good challenge but just not my cup of tea. With half the holes of this nature I was almost bored....reminded me of Codorus Blue. Has that ongoing challenge without enough truly memorable holes. Could the creek be used differently or perhaps it's limited by environmentalist concerns? Basically just a big long professional course. Nothing wrong with that but I wasn't daydreaming of any of the holes here on my way home.
Other Thoughts: Despite the lack of any glamour holes, this course much like Knob Hill and Codorus Blue have to be taken in as a whole to be appreciated. That is nothing really stands out as amazing but in the end playing 27 holes of challenging expert golf with no bad holes is something special. This course and Patapsco Valley makes a fine day of disc golf. I also threw my crystal buzz into a tall cedar on hole 27...looked like a big red Xmas ball 20 feet up, really pissed me off to end my day that way...then to my astonishment I saw the poles that are placed throughout to help in such emergencies. It took me perhaps 20 throws but I became rather adept at the javelin throw and eventually knocked my disc free. You can ask the deer who watched me do it, he was impressed...probably my best throw of the day!
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Seneca Creek Surprise
Pros: -Strong local club & park support
-Beautiful & well maintained course - Pack it in, pack it out rule very well followed.
-Great nature & bird watching / spotting opportunities. Creek comes into play on some holes.
-Two tees & multiple pin positions - Excellent for tournament play.
-Course is challenging but great for players of all levels to work on their game.
-Variety of terrains - Be prepared for a good hike.
-Course pretty easy to follow
-Overall the potential for a relaxing round of DG.
Cons: -DC Metro Traffic!!!! - Can be a pain - Plan & Time of your trip well.
-Little Natty bugs can be a bother in warm weather.
Other Thoughts: The last time I played Seneca Creek DGC it was only an 18 hole course. That's gotta be an easy decade ago. Back in the mid 90s, this course was the best thing going in DC and deservedly so. We all had to play it and play it often. Thanks for the great times back then, Craig!
When I arrived I did find it peculiar that what I remember to be hole 1 was now hole 10. I was both surprised and excited to figure out it was now a 27 hole gem. I remember back in the day Craig saying he had the room to expand. Even with the change, playing it was like hooking up with an old friend.
It took me a while to figure the lay out. Kept an eye on a few locals to figure out where the first hole was. (It needs a marker but it is to the left as you enter the parking lot.) Once I got started, it was pretty easy to follow the course. I was sorry to see that some of the old booming hill holes were gone with the expansion but I was having so much fun I got over that pretty quick.
This course is still one of the gems in the Washington, DC area. If your game isn't treating you well, the scenery will help relax and realign your focus. I had the same little white-tail doe follow me on three holes. Truly a Kodak Golf Spot moment on the DC Beltway. A definite wish list pick. Hope to see you at the Soiree!!
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
I like trees
Well groomed fairways, brand new tee-boxes, short and long, 27 technical fun holes, surrounded by huge trees, and good people.
Risk reward shots on almost every hole, where an average player can work on their throws and a veteran can know they're doing it right.
Good people. If you show up, there's bound to be 1 or a dozen guys/gals (1 in particular is there everyday, you'll know him when you meet him) there to give you a hint or just play a round.
Craig gave a good example of the course layout, but to me it is just a relaxing, fun, getaway that everyone should experience.
Cons: Tee box signs.
Other Thoughts: I said tee-box signs, however I am torn about the idea....too many signs nowadays
Sing it with me...
"D C G
Signs, signs, everywhere signs
F'n up the scenery, messin' my mind
I prefer Peter Frampton....get a friend and sing...
Oh won't youuuu, show me the way.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
good but not great --
Pros: Lots of holes, multiple pin and tee locations, lots of varity of play, well maintained park and course. No poison ivy.
Cons: This course is less parklike than most in the area, with lots of unmanicured rough. The overall look is less pretty.
With the expansion to 27 holes, the quality of the couse dropped. Most of the new holes are tree hacks, with a few where you are wading through a swamp. To fit the new holes in, some previously spectacular holes were eliminated. There are few long downhill or ridgeline holes any more. The long holes have the players throwing out of a hollow, and most of the downhill ones now are tree hacks.
Other Thoughts: Sometimes more isn't better.
I don't want to diss the course, because it is still a good play, with a lot of replayability.
I suspect the course is even more techncially challenging than it was previously -- it is certainly a challenge to play for me. But there are aesthetics to a course and to watching long downhill or ridgeline throws that the course designers seem not to value.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Well kept beauty
Pros: Beautiful course that has obviously been well taken care of. Separated from the rest of a large park, and has the feel of a 1st class course. Clean fairways in woods and on open grassy areas. Every hole plays fair with chances at good scores if you can shoot accurately. Not punished too badly for bad shots. If you want a top notch course that feels like your walking on a pristine nature trail this one's for you.
Cons: Might be picky, but there wasn't any holes that wowed me. Everything is nice, but nothing unique or overly challenging. Solid but kind of boring course. Layout is a little challenging for 1st timer. Could have better signs to direct toward next hole in some areas.
Other Thoughts: I would easily give this course a 4 if there was better signs and 1 or 2 better holes. Definitely worth a drive to play in that nice a setting though.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: 27 holes with multiple pin placements, multiple tee boxes, lots of forest/greenery/rolling hills, improves your game
Cons: not really a con but hard for a righty, seems like a more right turning holes than left. if my buddy wasn't with me, it would have taken a few tries to find some of the next tee boxes.
Other Thoughts: one of the best i've ever played in VA/MD/CO, but i've only played about 10 total courses to date
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Must play but a couple problems
Pros: If it weren't for the couple of minor cons below this course is easily a 5 rating. With just one play it's now in my top 3 with Lincoln Ridge/Banklick in KY and Cedar Hill in Nashville.
I like it so much because it is in such a beautiful park. The scenery is just what I'm looking for: lots of rolling hills and trees and even a small stream on a couple of holes. The woods holes (1-6, 13-18) are probably my favorite of the course because of both the look and the challenge they offer, but even the open holes are not easy due to no completely open field shots. 13 and 14 are the stand out holes of the course for me because of the shots, especially 14's tee shot: a great view which opens out to a clearing only to have the basket nestled in some trees at the end. Some people mention the walk from 14 to 15, but I didn't find it overly long or that strenuous, but if you are not in good shape it definitely could be a strain.
Each hole has two tees and multiple basket locations for variety. One of the best things I can say about this course is I found it challenging but fair. When I had a bad score I felt it was due to my mistakes rather than the course punishing me for my disc being a foot off of where it should have been. In other words, I didn't feel there were any forced pitch 'n pray shots when you stayed on course.
The course is well maintained and I didn't have a problem with any of the baskets. Each standard had a flag on top to assist in locating it. The grass was kept short and the woods are mostly clear of undergrowth.
Cons: I managed to navigate the course without a map or assistance thanks to "next tee" pointers and hole # markers by the pads. However, I can definitely see the navigation being tricky, especially if you're new to disc golf, because there's some crisscrossing going on through the middle of the course area.
Because the pads do not have tee signs that show the hole layout, par, and length, I had to run ahead in a few places to find out where I should be throwing. Combining the map and the scorecard would help fill in the gap here, but two different documents is a bit too much on the player's part in my book. Note that there are a couple of holes with old tee signs; I'm not sure if they are completely accurate anymore. The baskets have orange tape with the hole number in black on the middle pole inside the chains, but a couple have the hole number on top and--I may be remembering this incorrectly so forgive me--I think a couple of these top signs had the wrong number. Only a couple of times are you unsure of which basket to throw at so this isn't too big of a deal, just run up until you can read the tape. The holes I recall having this problem were 9 (I could see 27's basket) and 10 (again, 27's basket).
Finally, as I've mentioned in other reviews, I'm not a fan of parks that pay for entrance. I understand the need, but I don't have to like it. I played on a weekday and fortunately did not have to pay, but a few bucks to play this course is worth it in the end.
Other Thoughts: Seneca Creek is a very large park with lakes, hiking trails, picnic areas, etc. Very beautiful place, I'd like to explore it more if I'm ever in the area again.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Technical and Physical
Pros: I played it for the 1st time after the 27-hole layout was installed, and I was impressed by the transformation from a roller-dominated, cedar-shrouded course to a diverse gem comprising numerous technical holes, several air-it-out long holes, hyzer holes, anhyzer/turnover holes and, yes, even a few roller holes. Accuracy is key on most drives, with trees of various sizes lurking to take your drive out, but the predominance of cedars that defined the old course has been expertly reined in. The course is popular,so there should be a pretty good chance that you could just show up and have someone to play with.
Even with the number of people, the 27-hole layout in 3 loops provides separation: I played the first nine all alone and only saw or heard a few other people on the adjacent loop(s). The course is well-marked, and the paths between basket and next tee are well-worn, so it's pretty easy to find your way-at least on the first loop.
Cons: The older baskets are prone to cut-throughs - I had two in the first 9 holes plus a ring-job bounceout that cost me three strokes. Of course, I could blame it on my putting.
Other Thoughts: I found it handy to carry the course map (on my Blackberry, along with all of the course photos from this website). The 2nd loop has a number of elevation changes, including the honker-of-a-hike from 14 to 15 that reminded me of hiking Yosemite: just look down and keep putting one foot in front of the other until you reach the top! I'm glad I hooked up with some regulars on the middle 9, or I might have been walking around a lot more looking for the next tee. All-in-all, lots of fun and pleasantly challenging.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I'll reluctantly resist the temptation to peg this course as a 5 since that should be reserved for epic tracks like Paw Paw but there's just nothing not to like about this course. Gorgeous setting, challenging layout, multiple tees and pin settings, private feel, elevation changes, active group of volunteers and supportive Park management all make this a must play. Beautiful at any time of year, if you can catch it in late April/early May you'll get to enjoy the native Dogwood trees (even if you hit one or two). Each of the three 9 hole loops have a different character and allow you to work of different parts of your game. My favorite holes are #13 (old #11), #6 (pinball alley), #3 (gravity sucks) and #22 (open, or is it?). Trail is marked nicely in most places and where it isn't obvious there are signs to the next tee. Course is kept very clean.
Cons: Most holes tend to slightly favor the lefthand backhand line, but as mentioned earlier there's plenty of room to shape other shots. You may have to shoo deer out of the fairways. The walk from 12 to 13 isn't intuitive and there's a busy intersection after #7 and #24 but the signage is improving. Long walk from #14 pin to #15 tee (there was to be a hole or two in there that weren't permittted due to environmental concerns), lack of the epic downhill shot (see environmental concerns).
Other Thoughts: UPDATE; alcohol is no longer permitted (as of April 2009) in MD State Parks without a permit. Please help maintain the course's good standing with management by complying.
The old layout favored the roller on on most holes if you didn't have a monster air to take all the trees out of play. The new layout still has roller opportunties but generally offers more chances to fly. Maryland has four gems in Seneca, Patpasco, Rockburn and Druid with Seneca being the crown jewel imo.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 2 Not
Course designer review
Pros: Multiple tees and pins allow for accessibility by all skill levels.
Loops starting and finishing at parking areas makes getting on the course easier for everyone during busy times of the year.
Hard surface teepads (almost finished!) keep maintenance and erosion to a minimum.
Elevation changes on 15/27 holes.
Flags on all the baskets is a great addition - vastly improving visibility.
Dedicated area to disc golf means zero conflicts with other park users. Scorecards and maps are usually available in a box mounted to the course information board, but can also be downloaded and printed from the course website at senecadg.net
New tee signs have just been installed and are some of the nicest tee signs anywhere! Check the course info for an example of what they look like. These should help tremendously in navigating the course - we have plans for additional wayfinding markers to make it even easier.
Cons: A few teepads still need to be built
No permanent shelter or bathrooms
Other Thoughts: This course has been a labor of love for me. I designed and installed the original course in 1990 with John Powell. And did the re-design in 2007 with John Gregory. The course remains one of the highest SSA courses in the world relative to its length. Where most other high SSA courses rely mostly on distance, Seneca relies on a combined distance and accuracy seen in very few places. I've played upwards of 250 or so courses, and there are several I rank above Seneca, but through all my discoveries of other wonderful places to play, Seneca has remained amongst my top 10. I take no greater joy than seeing a players game develop and be influenced by the challenges this course presents. If you are ever in the DC area and are looking for a place to play - don't pass this one up!!
13 of 15 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.