13 Helpful / 1 Not
A Solid, Technically-Oriented Wooded Course
Pros: Boulder Woods at Pinchot State Park is a tightly wooded and technically-oriented course that would serve as a great into to wooded disc golf for newer players or provide seasoned players with a chance to work on accuracy and line shaping over just raw distance.
The layout of the course features holes that aren't extremely long (avg. 235' from the short tees and 265' from the long tees), but includes a nice mix and variety of left-to-right, right-to-left, and S-shaped fairways. Hole 13 is a standout. The hole features a 10-12' double-mando through to a hard left-turning dogleg over/around/through an arch created by several fallen trees.
The fairways on their own were fairly tight, very tree-lined, and bordered with a lot of somewhat dense foliage, though not so thick that you're likely to lose a disc or get cut up on briars. Most of the holes require some thought with regard to shot placement and approaches instead of the "grip 'n rip" technique that could be employed at a longer, more open course. That said, there are several birdie opportunities and possible ace runs at Boulder Woods.
The course features dual tees on several holes. The longer tees are concrete and are in great shape. Some baskets were showing signs of wear but were still in good playable condition.
I was impressed by the signage at the course. Once you've parked, the disc golf course is easily located via a giant sign. An information kiosk is present near the first hole and includes scorecards that feature both a map (including mandos) and distances (for both short and long tees). Each tee featured a very detailed map that included distances, mandos, and expected flight path. One of my favorite features (that I wish more courses had) was the next tee arrows that hung from the bottom of each basket. Although there were well-worn paths leading from most baskets to the next tee, the arrows were a big help.
Cons: Despite having a few holes > 400', I felt that most of the fairways were somewhat short (especially given the amount of land in the surrounding park). Just a single long, fully-powered drive-oriented hole would go a long way in making this course stand out a bit more and add some additional variety. Additionally, some of the fairways seemed to be randomly wood-studded to the point that it was difficult to identify clear throwing lanes. Additional layout issues that I had noted involved the flatness of the course and the lack of water. The course itself has very little elevation changes, adding a bit of monotony to the round. Further, with the exception of an overthrow on hole 7 and despite the fact that the course borders a lake, water isn't factored into the course design. Adding water would definitely add a risk/reward aspect to the course.
Although there were several holes that had mandatory obstacles that needed to be cleared, safety concerns troubled me a bit. On several occasions a drive or approach requires a throw across walking/biking paths. Additionally, there are several baskets, tees, and fairways that are in very close proximity to each other, making an errant throw all the more dangerous.
For technically-oriented courses, tight fairways help push players to focus on accuracy. In this case though, I believe that the fairway brush could be trimmed back 5-6' on most holes and still retain the tight feel without overly-punishing any shot that isn't 100% on the mark.
Other Thoughts: Despite the cons that I noted, Boulder Woods is a fun course that is not overly taxing or strenuous and rewards accuracy and punishes any throw that lacks focus. The course makes a great primer before or a cool down after Quaker's Challenge which is also located at Pinchot State Park. I would definitely go back to Boulder woods, and I'm looking forward to a rematch with this course.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Very good looking course
Pros: Boulder Woods is a good looking course. It is very aesthetically pleasing with the Boulders and grass as well as the numerous older hardwood trees.
The tee's are great. Slightly wider in the back than in the front and in great shape.
There is not a ton of elevation but this course took advantage of what was available.
Bolder Woods is very well maintained. Debris and Trash was at an absolute minimum on what is a pretty heavily used course. The local disc golf club obviously takes great care of this course and it shows.
Even though the course is short there are some tight lines that are needed to be hit to provide birdie oportunities. I really appreciated that on most holes there were multiple shots available from the tee. Both flicks and backhands were an option on most holes. Not that the course is wide open but that there are paths through the trees for both.
I am partial to wooded courses so I am going to list this it as a pro for this course since the nice large hardwoods provided great shade on the really hot day that I played it.
Cons: Really one very all encompassing Con is the design of the course. I really enjoyed the course but the overall design is not really appropriate for Disc Golf as it is played today. Holes 1, 2, and 3 are very close to each other and there were discs intermingling on all three holes, which can be pretty dangerous to the unaware. Also when a course has so many mandatories (I think there are 5 holes with mandos) to protect other Holes tee boxes, I think some redesign is in order. Hole #5's best route to the pin is a RHFH which is directly at a pavilion. I write these as cons but I can see that when this course was originally designed it might not have been to much of a problem but disc technology and the increasing amount of players make so many holes crowded together somewhat dangerous.
Other Thoughts: Boulder Woods is a good course one which I actually enjoyed more than its sister course Quakers Challenge. The Mandos do make some of the holes more difficult which is nice since this course does not offer the distance that other courses offer.
This course is located in a very nice state park that is very close to Harrisburg and has a few other courses within a reasonable distance.
Boulder Woods is obviously an older course and it has some great charm. I would be more apt to bring a recreational friend to play here rather than Quaker.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 2 Not
Fun and Challenging
Pros: Plays through the woods with a variety of shots needed to succeed. Scorecards are provided and the tees are some of the best I have played on. The tee signs are very helpful and they even have bag holders. After playing here that is a luxury I want on every course.
Cons: A few swampy areas on some holes. They did a good job of ways to get around just hope your disc doesnt land in them. Which they are on the middle of fairways so that may happen. There is a nice lake there that is somewhat treacherous if you have a really bad throw.
Other Thoughts: The swampy areas really isnt much you can do about it, but it does suck. If a hole would have went along with lake and really made the lake an obstacle that would have added an amazing hole and best view of the course.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Accuracy is a must here...if you're wild, your score will suffer
Cons: Pedestrians and picnic-ers can be at risk off errant shots
Other Thoughts: Played in a light rain the week after the Keystone State Games were held there. A few treacherous spots when wet, and made sure to check for ticks after
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Aptly Named DG Course
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Very well maintained course in the beautiful Gifford Pinchot State Park. Nice, mostly wooded holes requiring you to use a variety of shots. Large concrete tees a big plus, as are the wooden 4 x 4 poles at each tee with a map of the hole and a place to hang your disc bag. Several mandos keep you honest on about a half dozen holes. Course is easy to navigate and has a shed with scorecards at the 1st tee. Challenging enough for most advanced players yet manageable for the recreational DG'er with plenty of opportunities for success.
Cons: Does not have the elevation or distance of its sister course (the newer Quakers' Challenge) on the other side of the park. Many holes run near one another and pedestrian and picnicker traffic are potential trouble spots. The distance of the holes depicted on each tee map is different from that on the scorecard.
Other Thoughts: Yet another in a long line of very good Pennsylvania disc golf courses. A really nice playing experience here, as this park is wonderful, its many amenities including a huge lake making it a big tourist attraction. Boulder Woods is named for the large gray rocks that are spread throughout the course, although navigation is not difficult. Play this course before taking the challenge of playing the considerably more difficult Quakers' Challenge across the lake.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: For a beginner/amateur/recreational course, this place is impressive! It's 18 holes that make you think about your angle, placement, and shot type -- but is far from frustrating or demanding like its sibling course on the other side of the park.
Holes of interest include:
#4 - An slight uphill blind fairway guarded by super thick brush on both sides.
#5 - The longest hole on the course. Follows a slight S-pattern and will punish straight line drives.
#7 - Hole number seven plays close to the lake. Coupled with an anhyzer mando, this great risk/reward hole is the best one at Boulder Woods IMO.
#12 - Sharp anhyzer mando
#15 - A sharp hyzer that goes slightly downhill; the basket is guarded by several boulders. Bring your whippet or wasp for this hole!
While the lengths of the holes aren't too long, they are redeemed by the clever use of mandos throughout the 18 holes. I don't think I've ever seen so many mandos in one course, nor have I ever seen them marked so well! Most of the mandos require anhyzer shots, but one forces you to split an upright of two trees. Very fun!
The concrete teepads are very grippy and give you plenty of space for running-up and x-steps. Signage is good, too. As far as navigation, I've never seen a course marked so well. You couldn't get lost on that course if you tried, and a map - while handy - will probably not be necessary.
There are several blind shots here. Some people would see this as a con, but I think they add some suspense to a relatively simple course.
Cons: Aside from a few blind shots, the course lacks elevation. Fortunately Quakers Challenge more than makes up for it!
The slightly old DISCatcher baskets are rusting in parts and many lack numbers. Fortunately the intuitive navigation of the course mitigates this issue. The chains also don't grab the discs too well any more (even with an SSS Wizard).
The biggest issue I have with the course is the close proximity of the pin placement near the major hiking trails of the park, especially on holes 7,8,and 18. I mean, the baskets are basically touching the trails! Since the trails are utilized by many park patrons, there's a great chance of hitting them if you don't watch before you throw. This is one of the only bad examples of planning on this course.
Other Thoughts: After playing here, there are few courses I think would be more perfect to take a first-timer to than this one. The entire course was built for people new to the game, but it's definitely not boring! Quite the contrary.
Boulder Woods is arguably the signature mando course in the Commonwealth and serves as a fantastic complement to the other course in he park: Quaker's Challenge.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 2 Not
Decent short technical course.
Pros: Concrete tees. Good signage. Fairly short and technical course with clearly marked mandos. Offers a good variety of shots and should be good practice for beginners or nice warm up for the Quaker's Challenge. Bathrooms on course.
Cons: Crowded area of park, had people roaming the fairway.
Other Thoughts: I was only going to play BW my last day in York, but it didn't quite satisfy my disc golf thirst, so I played Quaker's Challenge right after. BW is a good beginner course, but its not likely going to satisfy most advanced or pro players. Next time I go to Pinchot I'm either using BW as a warm up or playing QC twice.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Extremely nice concrete teepads - long, wide, grooved. Excellent signs, showing the basket location, distance, mandos, alternate rec-tee locations. Poles to hang bags. Mandos clearly marked on course. Next tee arrows on bottom of basket. Bathroom and water fountain nearby. Many views of lake.
Walking paths, pavilions, grilles, and picnic tables near some holes. Single basket position.
Course plays on fairly flat land amidst large trees, large grey rocks, and a thin amount of undergrowth. The lake is in view a good portion of the front #9 - too long on #7 and you'll find water!. Wide ranges of distances, from 165' to 425', six holes 300' or longer. Nice variety of left/right/S-turning shots, of various distance and sharpness, needed to score well.
Favourite hole #11: Up a gentle upward slope with a sweeping right turn about 200', then come back left and down the other side of a slope another 100' to the basket.
Solid course - a good challenge for beginning players ready to take on trees and turns, certainly difficult enough for experienced players to hone a variety of their shots.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
recreational disc golf
Pros: • Good for beginners/recreational disc golfers
• Concrete tee pads on every hole
• Signage excellent at both tees and pins - no getting lost here
• Clean & well maintained
• Very low percentage for losing a disc
• Technical - guaranteed disc/tree collision!
• Short/birdie chances; par easily attainable even after poor drives/approaches
Cons: • Short with little punishment for mistakes
• Lack of significant elevation change & without variety (all wooded - no chance to 'air it out')
• Neither physically or mentally demanding
• Walking paths/pedestrians near tees, fairways, baskets
• Holes too close to one another/intertwine
• Water not really in play although nearby
• For the casual not the masochists
Other Thoughts: PA State Parks do disc golf well for the land they're given and most importantly, the purpose of the course - which in this case appears to be casual and introductory. At the time, I regretted playing this course before 'Quaker's Challenge' (which is also located in the park). However if I had played the two courses in reverse, the likelihood of not finishing 'Boulder Woods' would have been highly probable (take into account the temp. in the low 90's with high humidity, the physically/mentally demanding nature of 'Quaker's Challenge' and the lack of such qualities in this course).
My personal course preferences aside, this course does what it was intended to do and it does it well. A solid three discs.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Good beginners course
Pros: This course is a great beginners or pros course. The holes are not overly long and at most times you can have a decent shot at par. The course is easy to follow and the course is maintained very well. Some of the holes are creative as in there are mandatory shots and a couple of neat doglegs. The course can be easy yet really challenging at the same time. Holes like number 4 are always fun and give great chances for people of all skills to get a possible ace. The more I play this course, the more I want to conquer it. There are always new challenges when playing this course, which is one of the things that makes it so nice. The course is taken care of by a local group who has taken great pride in their courses.
Cons: People can get in the way if the park is really busy. Make sure you keep an eye on your disc during the summer months.
Other Thoughts: This is a fun course to play. I had 3 brand new people to disc golf playing with me and they had an enjoyable time. The more I play this course, the more I enjoy it. There are always different shots that you get into at this course, and you can always try and beat your score on this course as it's not predictable. Tournaments at this course are fun to play.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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