7 Helpful / 0 Not
Whispering Falls Screaming to be Noticed!
Pros: Underrated! I really don't understand why this course is not getting the recognition of similiar courses. This is one of the best courses I have played. It offers challenge and beauty as well as plenty of amenities: benches on every hole, Great Info Kiosk, Informative tee signs, next tee markers, and ample rubber tees. There are a good blend of 2/3 woods and 1/3 more open holes. 2 holes feature water risk and there is plenty of elevation up down and over wooded valleys. What is most remarkable is the piece of land itself, just perfect disc golf property and utilized very well. This is a breakdown of the course as it plays in the long position:
#1 a spectacular 717 ft opening drive from the kiosk/lot area across an open valley to a moderately wooded field tucked into the woods. If your drive falls short your shooting uphill. If your drive is not placed well there are several trees and sloping hillsides on the field to thwart a par 4. Clever guys, 717 feet named after the 717 disc golf club, very cool!
#2 a short hike to this tee...shot is a clear wooded fairway uphill going to the right with a drastic downhill mountainside danger to the left, I mean drastic....basket is at the top of the rise 355 ft uphill with perhaps 500 feet of mountain dropoff to the left. Don'y hyzer here fellas!
#3 a tight fairway that plays straight but slightly uphill then drastically downhill and back up with very steep pitch on this up/down valley...use the rope to negotiate this valley-I am not kidding! 520 feet of up, dooooown! and uppp! to par 4 this one.
#4 Catch your breath 255 ft anhyzer shorty...get the par 3 you will need it to buffer your ego!
#5 Let it rip 360 foot open drive over a thicketed ravine to a basket in a more open field above. Take your 3.
#6 Tight downhill drive 285 to a basket tucked on a wooded hillside...creek/ravine runs to the left. par 3.
#7 Another 285 foot wooded drive but this one requires you to clear a valley...better avoid the woods to get your par 3.
#8 First of 2 obvious logger road holes...this one is a flat but turns consistently in a crescent moon shape to the right almost 180 degrees from becoming a full circle....lefties revenge I call this par 4 610 foot meanie!
#9 A long straight logging road shot 505 feet...keep it on the fairway and your golden par 4.
#10 Roller Coaster like 410 foot shot straight down the mountain...drastic elevation change here..throw your putter and realize you won't play many other similiar holes to this one and hope for a par 3.
#11 A big open 685 ft drive across a flat open grass field with the serene but huge river to your left from tee to basket. Be smart stay dry and take 4 rather than a fruitless swim.
#12 the only super tight cedar hole on the course. No shule here but plenty of tree trouble. Finesse a 3 on this 355 footer.
Now take a little 1/4 mile hike and realize that your playing one hell of a course.
#13 take a break on the bench and then tee off on this 435 par 4 wooded hole.
#14 Interesting hole here, Theres a pond that provides danger early and then its equally tight the entire 390 distance to the basket, frustratingly hard par 4.
#15 The only ace run on the course. Be careful though its a downhill tight punch to an elevated basket on a manmade foundation. A la Tyler State Park. It's an ace run but you could double bogey this par 3 with bad approaches.
#16 A big righty hyzer out of the woods to a basket in the open field. You got the whip to hyzer 405 to the field or will you hyzer 350 or less into the woods and ruin your chance at a par 3?
#17 Tough semi open dogleg to the left. You have to clear an OOB over 300 feet away and then play smart to this 450 foot par 4
#18 An open blast across a valley and wetlands area to a guarded basket 450 feet of open air away.
Cons: Well the course is new so I will not complain about the trouble off the fairways...BTW it really is not that bad here..I have experienced far worse. I am not a fan of courses with short and long pins alternating. Like the prior review states, the long pins make this gem unforgetable. If it was mostly in the shorts, it's still good but not great and the walks between holes becomes more problematic. I like it if there are both long and short baskets or 2 tee pads. I realize that is a lot of work to make tees or a lot of money for extra baskets. Just prefer the long positions to be somehow permanent. The tees are rubber and there is some breakdown...I don't see how anyone could expect there to be concrete tees way out in the forrest though. The biggest problem with this course is the wetlands area on holes 17 and 18. I think it is unrealistic for 80% of disc golfers to consistently clear these areas.....I think the constant disc golfer retrieving discs in these no trespassing and wetland zones will raise some eyebrows and possibly jeopardize the course...Conservationists and nature lovers are a much more powerful lobby group than disc golfers...I hope some common sense prevails and a subtle redesign is implemented that will preserve the wetlands area and this amazing disc golf course before some naturalist gets the entire thing pulled. After the hike I wasn't as impressed with the latter 6 holes. Still quality holes but the best holes are in the front 12 IMO. So the course ends on a bit of a dare I say Whisper.
Other Thoughts: I absolutely love this course. The final 6 holes holes may improve once the construction in that area of the park ceases. This is one of the best and could easily end up being the best in PA if more people would make the trip out here. I would recommend playing this one on your way to or from Paw Paw as it is relatively close. I doubt there are 3 courses of this magnitude so close to one another anywhere else!
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The amount of work put into this course is evident. I have a particular appreciation for recognizing the kind and amount of manpower it takes to put a course in on a piece of property like this. Very few areas can be reached w/ a vehicle, so whatever tools and materials you're hauling in - you're hauling in.
It's a visually appealing piece of property, long sweeping hills, in the PA mountains, but it's a difficult site for a DGC - very spread out.
Lot's of elevation (extreme in places), and a nice mix of Open and wooded holes. There are some pretty scenic/dramatic shots, which leave a good impression after playing, and on the first time through - a general "what's next" sort of anticipation. Generally, the course is long, but with multiple pin placements for most holes, it could obviously be set up in an easier configuration than I played it.
Hole 10 is perhaps the most dramatic, shooting down a steep ravine w/ maybe 50-60' change in elevation - pretty tough with the wind sweeping up in your face.
Cons: There are a couple long walks on the course. between 1&2 is nearly 1/4 mile, and between 12& 13 is at least 1/2 mile - all uphill - woof. This is testament to the difficulty of the property. While separation is a good quality for general course design. Whispering Falls version is a little extreme, and is one of the drawbacks in this instance. Sometimes (and this is one of those times) - you just don't have a choice.
Another CON is the rubber tee mats. Normally these are not a CON but, when you take the mat and just stake it to the ground, they deteriorate quickly, as has already happened to several of the pads. They need to be properly laid on a prepared, compacted stone dust bed. This would improve footing, and the life of the pads significantly.
Be prepared for a hike - its along - bumpy walk through the woods, and you must navigate some extremely steep areas - I can imagine in a couple weeks when is starts to thaw out, it will be a teacherous, muddy mess.
Other Thoughts: Signs aren't bad, but I question some of the posted distances. Plus a few have suffered from local kid vandalism. Lots of evident work, with a few sets of steps in key places, a guide rope for navigating the really steep hill going down to the extended pin on #3, and the nicest raised pin placement I have seen yet on #15.
There are several holes that utilize old logging roads which aren't my favorite kind of holes. While the fairways are ready made - in order to make the road in the first place, the people doing the clearing just shove all the junk off to the side, creating a virtually impossible cleanup job for folks like us that come in and want to use the roads as fairways. Makes for really rough rough - with lots of briars - something that'll take huge amounts of time to overcome.
Overall I like the course. There are some really good qualities here. It's only a year or two old, and is obviously still being broken in. With the distance and variation offered, this course should generate some good players.
One of several courses that has sprung up in south central PA in the last few years - good to see.
If you're doing a tour through the Mid Atlantic - definitely worth a visit.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
Take a hike ... and enjoy!
Pros: This course is a real challenge. While I was groaning at how difficult par is on a few of the holes, I know that if I lived in the area, I would relish playing frequently at this course and improving my game.
The park and surrounding scenery is beautiful. I enjoyed being out in the woods, away from all the noise.
From the elevation changes to the direction of each hole, this course provides lots of variety! Despite a ton of bogeys, I enjoyed the course immensely.
Cons: Hole #17 is ridiculous ... there's really no fairway and unless you can fly the basket, you risk hitting the water or out-of-bounds environmental area. Not wanting to lose a disc, I took the sissy route -- I tossed my disc 100 feet and then aimed for the basket.
Hole #9 is far away from the parking lot, so playing a "quick nine" isn't as viable an option, but seriously, if you're at Whispering Falls, you should be planning to play all 18 anyway.
Other Thoughts: This course provides a great workout -- especially considering the hike down the steep embankment at hole #10 and the quarter-mile jaunt after hole #12.
The tees are rubber.
Wear comfortable hiking shoes.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Nice one 717
Lots of variety and elevation used in the course. No course in this area gives you such a variety of shots in 18 holes.
Great location to build a Disc Golf Course!
Great course map ... get a colored version here:
The Blackberry's were awesome!
Cons: "The walk" - a 1/4 mile hike between 12 & 13 causes some people to bitch ... it's a great hike in the woods "get over it".
Conococheague Creek is more of a river ... I suspect a disc in that river is gone for good!
I played this solo on June 27, and heard that you really need a spotter for most throws. However, I brought all my white or bright discs and had no problems finding all of my plastic.
Other Thoughts: SSA of 58.81 & 56.54 in their first PDGA tournament with mixed pins.
I would love to see a tournament with all pins in their long postion ... image the SSA.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 3 Not
I REALLY want to like this course!!
Pros: This course is on a GREAT piece of property. There is a good variety of holes, elevation changes and natural beauty. VERY challenging and not necessarily a place to take a "first timer" to try to get them hooked on the game.
Cons: With all due respect to their dedication and hard work, it seems that the designers let the existing park structure dictate the course design, instead of using the natural lay of the land to create the most challenging course possible. Too often the holes seem to follow/share the already established trails. This can put other park users unwittingly in harms way, and potentially view the sport as something that is "encroaching on their park experience."
With one caveat, I would say that 1/2 to 2/3 of the holes are well designed - the remainder could use some work. Unfortunately, that might require a radical redesign of the course! (Some new park development might make hole #17 unplayable?)
The "caveat" that I mention is that while there are 2 pin positions on each hole, there is but one tee position. Too many of the "B" pins are just longer, more "strenuous" versions of the "A" pins. I believe pin positions should be scattered in roughly the same general area - each more difficult/challenging than the previous - but not just "a longer shot." The tee pads should be what add length to the holes. Additionally, I'd agree that more signage is necessary to navigate the course.
Also, while the stream is a beautiful part of this course, the death defying descent down #9 fairway, and the confusing trek from #12 - #13 thoroughly detracts from the stream's added benefit.
Lastly, one quick and easy improvement: get a brush hog and/or a couple of scythes and clear a fairway swath 20-30' wide through the ravine on #4. "A good shot should be rewarded, and a bad shot punished." A beginner, or younger player, might have a good shot that doesn't clear the ravine, but goes straight. I believe it's counterproductive to "shorter throwing" players to make them wade through the briers just because they can't throw that far! And, they have no choice but to "go for it." There's no alternate route! Furthermore, it would eliminate the wide walk around just to get up to the basket!
Other Thoughts: I grew up just miles away from this course, and began playing while living in the area. At that time, it was an hour drive in any of 4 different directions just to play a course with baskets!!
Don't get me wrong, I HAVE THE UTMOST RESPECT for the 717 crew, and all that they are doing for Disc Golf in Franklin County and the Cumberland Valley!!! Any criticisms I give here are meant to be constructive! Living in Pittsburgh, and helping to build several of the courses there, has perhaps spoiled me to high-quality course design.
Overall, this course is worth playing, and even going out of your way to play! I would just love to see it live up to the potential of the plot of land that it inhabits.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Disc golf course gem
Pros: Great hole variety, in both length and difficulty. Severe elevation changes that will test you physically and mentally. No two holes looked or played alike. Great mix of wooded and open holes. There are some holes that start out in the woods, and end in the open and vice versa. There are some really long holes, and some shorter holes to mix things up and keep your all around game sharp.
Tee signs at every hole, provide a lot of information. Not only do the included a map of the hole, showing the pin and ob locations, they also include a suggestion on how one might best play the hole. Each tee has nice rubber tee pads. I played the morning after several consecutive days of rain, and the pads were relatively dry and not the least bit slippery.
Plenty of maps and scorecard available at the course sign, as well as a lost disc box. The park had great facilities, plenty of clean bathrooms, picnic areas, tot lot and a good size parking lot. Park is also well maintained.
Cons: I'm nitpicking, because there is so much here to like. One minor issue was the need for more directional signs. Although, I did have a map, I find it easier to just look for next tee signs to negotiate the course. The hike between #12 and #13, as mentioned by users is long, so a sign or two letting you know that you are going in the right direction would be nice. Also, some lumpy tees due to wear, so what your footing. A couple tees where on a declined slope. As the course matures, I see these becoming a non issue.
There are some very steep and precarious declines on this course. You will need to be very cautious traversing these. Stairs and roping like on hole #3 would be tremendously beneficial. Due to the length and elevation changes, I would not recommend this course for children under 12, or first timers. This course will challenge anyone, from intermediates to the top pros. It reminds me of Quaker's Challenge
, because of the elevation changes, difficulty and length. There is a good possibility of losing a disc (or two).
The 717 crew has done a ton of work and are to be commended. The amount of work they have put in to create such tremendous holes is unbelievable.
Finally, the course is located in a small rural town about half way between Chambersburg, PA and Hagerstown MD. So drop your family off at the outlets in Hagerstown and spend a few hours playing this gem.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 1 Not
One of the most
Pros: With pins in the B-pins, this course has among the best hole diversity of any White/Blue-level course I have ever played. This course will challenge any golfer of any skill level, but the place is so beautiful you won't mind the challenge. Tees are clearly marked and the course flow is very good in the B-pins (much more senseless walking in the A-pins), though there is still more walking than on many other courses. Yet the walking is an acceptable trade-off, as it makes for about half the holes being these glorious, memorable shots. Lots of length and elevation, so be careful going out here to bring good shoes, snacks and plenty to drink.
They are still working on adding more pin placements and clearing out a few of the fairways, and the improvements that are being made are only going to make this course better. However, construction is causing some revamping to a couple of holes, and it remains to be seen whether that will help or hinder the course.
I can't wait to see what kind of scores come in at tournaments with everything in longs. This course has the potential to eat you alive and make you beg for more.
Scenic views across fields, a true river (not a usual disc golf stream), down steep hills, through glorious forests, and out over marshes all make this an amazing place to play. You could hike this land and feel you're time was well spent, because it's that beautiful. To get to throw discs here as well is just amazing.
Cons: It takes a long time to play a round (but this is offset because the rounds are so enjoyable). The course is new, so it is still in its break-in period (but just keeps getting better). It definitely needs stairs/bridges/benches, etc several more places, because this course is long and in some places very slippery/steep, depending on how the weather has been.
There are a few places where throwing lanes overlap with walking trails, and you have to be careful of the occasional hiker/jogger/dog-walker. I don't know if warning signs are marked yet, but they need to be for safety, especially around some of the blind shots.
Awful mud in some places due to construction.
You never come back near the car in 18 holes, so when you leave for the round, take everything you will need. No chance to refill midway.
Underbrush can be nasty on parts of the course.
A-pins (short pins) are disappointing on many holes -- significantly decrease the strategy and precision that make this such a great course.
Other Thoughts: I've played about 150 courses across the U.S., and Whispering Falls stands out as one of the most memorable and one of the most purely fun courses imaginable. There are so many shots that will just make you laugh they are such great holes.
The course is helped immensely by having an active and very enthusiastic local club which has done a tremendous amount of work -- and continues to do a tremendous amount of work -- to improve this place. Expect it to be improved every time you visit. But it is worth checking the local boards to see if they post up the latest pin placements, and to check to see if construction is affecting the course.
The course gets a 4.5 from me for the B-pins (the longs). The B-pins are excellent. The A-pins (short) on the other hand are a much less enjoyable course, getting a 3.5. So the middle ground, since the course placements vary, is to give this course a 4.0. If they ever get two permanent baskets in on each hole, and add steps/bridges/etc... to the park, it might keep a 4.5 rating permanently. That will depend on how the course continues to improve, and how construction pans out.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 1 Not
Whispering Falls - A nice course!
Pros: The diversity of holes on this course is excellent. One basket is "raised" 8 feet off of the ground on a series of tiered boxes. This makes the pin visible from the tee, but gives you a nice surprise when you get close! The baskets are in GREAT shape, parking and facilities are nice, and this park is extremely CLEAN! There are maps and scorecards, information on bulletin boards about local clubs, etc., and the views are very nice. It was calming and serene to hear the sound of the "mini-waterfalls". The holes are challenging, and there seemed to be 2 pin placements per hole. Signs were very good. I found this course to have multiple challenges with regards to elevation.
Cons: I could see where this course could be very long. No concrete tee pads, but it has the rubber mats instead. I really prefer concrete tee pads, but the rubber mats were sufficient. I didn't like the half a mile hike up the mountain between #12 and #13, but it was good exercise. With this course just getting established, I can see where some additional clearing could be done. I found many of the wooded holes to have more narrow throwing lanes than I am used to. I could also see some steps being built or more clearly cut out in the future to aid in getting up and down the hill. A couple of holes do seem subject to flooding.
Other Thoughts: This is a very wooded and diverse course. I had the opportunity to play it this week when I visited PA. I enjoyed it, and I would highly recommend it! Thanks to Ian and company for showing me around the course.
7 of 8 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
Beautifully challenging diversity
Pros: From a purely aesthetics standpoint this park is beautiful and worth simply a walkthrough. Everything from tree coverage, to the creek and its covered wooden bridge, to the breath taking views overlooking the backside this really is a treasured piece of land.
From a players perspective this course is a dream. No two holes are alike and make use of every throw you have in your bag. I can't think of a single type of hole that is not covered in one fashion or another as you navigate this course. There are both A and B pins which provide even further diversity.
Cons: Many disc golf courses are crammed together due to limited space. This course is spread out well to make use of all the terrain and as a result the walks are a bit longer in some spots which may or may not be a Con.
There is also plenty or small projects that go along with a new course like clearing trees pushed aside from the initial construction, tee box enhancements, small bridges, etc....all of which I plan to take part in completing.
Other Thoughts: I have played this course many times now as I consider it my home since it opened a little less than a year ago. It provides a throughly enjoyable challenge each and everytime I can make it out. The local group has done an outstanding job in making this course happen and I know that this course will only get better with time.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: Opportunity for a wide range of shots - open field, wooded with wide lanes, wooded with tight lanes, over gullies and even some potential water hazard on #11 - Two pin placements for most holes
Cons: Long course when pins are in "B" position. 3 mile walk in any case. 1/4 mile walk from pin #12 to tee on #13. Lots of brambles and plenty of places to lose your discs - spotters needed on some holes.
Other Thoughts: Had a great time playing this course, but would not have fared so well if I had not chanced to meet some local players who knew the course. (Thanks Glenn and Matt)
2 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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