Walk a Mile in Casey's Shu
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Shu Pond, a private disc golf refuge designed and maintained by owner Casey Shufelt, is located on a 6th generation family farm. An orchard and garden, as well as a small creek and pond, are central to the property. The course wends in and out of several wooded areas, with many holes either playing into the woods from the open or vice versa. Although the course is really probably "moderately wooded" it plays more along the lines of "heavily wooded" in many places. The rough is brutally punishing towards bad shots, but fair on decently executed ones that are only slightly wayward.
- Water comes into play on three holes (#'s 4, 5, and 9). Hole #4's tee sits in the woods, with a RHBH and RHFH route available through tight gaps in the trees out into the open. The pond lurks to the right, pin sitting on the edge. Putts outside the circle force a "layup or risk being wet" decision to be made. Hole #5 shoots over the pond (kinda), a wall of trees with a few gaps to hit, a small creek, and up a slope to an open-area basket. This hole forces either a massive shot through or over the trees, or a strategic layup short of the stream. Although the pond sits to the left, the real risk of getting wet is missing a gap in the tree wall and falling into the creek.
- Elevation is used spectacularly well throughout. While Shu Pond's property does not contain any epic- level elevation, all the good stuff is used to its utmost potential. Hole #4's pin placement near the pond bank creates good risk and reward. #5's sloped green and stream create a nice "down then up" wrinkle. Hole #6 shoots off the high point of the course, past a solitary tree in the middle of the fairway, down into a heavily wooded area, basket tucked into the trees maybe 50-60'. Hole #8 is, to me, the signature hole of the course. Teeing off down a dirt road, the fairway slopes off to the right and left. Left of the road and you're left with a blind up and over out of the rough. Right of the road leaves a low-ceiling, tricky approach (perfect for rollers). Down the road leaves a good approach, but with the basket recently pushed back farther into a green surrounded by tree branches, you'll need a bit of luck to pick up a three. I kept referring to #8 as "The Sidewinder" because of the way it appears like a gigantic snake, twisting it's body back and forth. Hole #9, "The Top of The Pond" shot, shoots from the same pad as #6, only heading in the other direction. The creek is far to the left, but still in play on wayward shots. A downhill shot requires navigation around a few mature trees and good placement to have an open approach to the final basket. A large barn to the right cuts off some of the wider hyzer routes.
- The trees are used very well. Tight gaps out into the open. Tight gaps from the open into a wooded green. "Gates" through which one must execute their approach to reach the green (#'s 5 and 7). Lone guardian trees. Dark fairy tale looking pine forest. Scrubby deciduous woodland. Lots of beauty throughout the course in this regard. Casey seems to have a really good eye for picking out parts of the property with really cool trees, and maximizing the design around them. At one point it feels like a video game transition from an idyllic grassy field into a dark foreboding patch of pine.
- Amenities are scant but sufficient for a guided round. Without signage, a guide that knows the layout is a must. Bridges to cross the stream, mulch in low-laying areas, and other similar treatments make this course easily accessible for most. Tees are mixed, with the country road in front of the house serving as #1's tee. Several tees have some sort of boxed-in mulch or similar tee. A few are natural dirt/grass. They all play decently enough, with #4 and #7 being the only ones where I wish I had a bit more room to work with. The baskets are a mix of random practice baskets and homemade targets. The homemade targets incorporate old tires and actually catch reasonably well.
Cons: - Occasionally the course does not reward good shots. #8's green and right-side of the fairway being the most glaring example. A great drive on that hole would time and time again lead to almost no look at birdie and sometimes wouldn't even result in par, due to the low-hanging branches preventing a clean look at the basket.
- A lack of signage is understandable, but would go a long way to making this course more presentable and professional looking. Not necessarily detailed maps; but something uniform and clean looking.
- The tees, while serviceable, were probably the main drawback to this otherwise fine course. Tee areas could be widened/cleaned-up just a bit more than they were. Large groups would have a tough time squeezing into some of the tee areas.
- Mosquitoes. Ho boy. Bring bug spray. If you're from the immediate area, you already know what's up. If not, this course is basically unplayable without spray. That said, what Midwest course doesn't struggle with skeeters from time-to-time? More of a public service announcement than a true con.
- The course heavily favors a RHFH approach, although there's enough variety to keep it from being every single shot. Hole #'s 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, and 8 all favor RHFH to some degree, with #'s 1, 2, and 6 being the most egregious offenders.
Other Thoughts: - To the right of #8's tee, off the fairway, is what I can only describe as a "dead hooker pile." Old mattresses, ashes, and random rusty junk: that screams "dead hooker pile" to me. Stay out of the dead hooker pile unless you're jonseing for a hybrid case of lockjaw-syphilis.
- I kept circling around and playing again. Every time through I thought, "I can score better than that." Every time I got roughed up again. And I kept wanting more. There's no real "signature" hole out here...in some respects they are ALL signature holes, with #1 perhaps being the weakest of the nine. Hole #'s 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 are all awesomesauces. This is the most epic nine hole course I've played to date. Shu Pond might be a bit rough around the edges, but it's a diamond in the rough.
- Be sure to contact Casey prior to showing up for a round here. He's a good guy and super fun to disc with, so don't be shy! Make a new friend! Say hello to Cooper the disc dog! Enjoy yourself in the small but cozy clubhouse pre- and post-round! Walk a mile in Casey's Shu, I guarantee you'll find a challenging, progressive brand of disc golf that's incredibly fun and addictive!
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: This is my favorite course to play because it gives the feeling of playing at home. You don't have to worry about other players in the front or back of you because it is a private course. You can take your time playing it and just have a good time. Although none of the holes are extremely long they are challenging. The course has some tight tee boxes and difficult pin placements. The water hazard of the pond is nice touch. There are many rest area's on the course if you just want to take a break and relax. The course is constructed so that is can be played a number of ways which makes it fun. It is a nice short course that you could play all day and not get sick of it.
Cons: Watch out for Cooper bombs. The bugs can be a little bad if you play at dawn or dusk. I would not recommend this course if you have a heart condition, are pregnant, or a history of seizures, because it will blow you away!
Other Thoughts: This is a great course for all players. Everyone should play it once.
4 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Semi-Biased Owner Review
12 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Shu pond is a very underplayed and underrated, semi-private course that offers a lot of variety for being just 9 holes. The course is currently in the process of putting in 9 "well loved" Innova DisCathers. While the course mainly plays in and around a semi-wooded area the majority of the course is designed to have either a rather tight gap to hit at the tee pad or mid fairway. On top of that some of the greens are very well protected. So, you really have to think about your shot selection or your in trouble. Several of the greens out there that have only one real way to get at the basket, so being aggressive sometimes can leave you in the rough on the backside, struggling to make your putt. The course boasts some amenities like benches and some recycling can/pails strategically place throughout the course.There is also some elevation in play but it is mainly off the tee. Holes 3 is a RHBH Hyzer through a slow moving 10 foot gap with a stump sticking up about 4 feet in the center of intended fairway.
I also like how the course brings water in play on hole 4 with the basket sitting right on the ponds edge but also have some crazy tight line with RHBH route being more favorable, plus a creek comes into play on hole 5 and 9. The wood-chipped fairways on 6 & 7 have really improved the look of the holes as well as help them drain better and making play much more enjoyable. Hole 7 has turn into quite the up hill battle as you shoot out of a heavily wood area to an openish landing zone and then have another 10 feet or so uphill shot through some heavy woods. Hole 9 480 bomb off a 15 foot hill, really cool to watch your disc just air out and fly on the last hole.
Cons: The course does not have tee signs(I am always guiding) and tee pads are natural with a few carpet ones. Its a hard course to get onto as i am usually off playing disc golf. The course could be seen as slightly rough by some people. The bugs do get pretty bad out here sometime too.
Other Thoughts: All and all this is a well designed course when coupled with Wittkopf, really make for an enjoyable day of scoreable golf that will leave feeling pretty good about the tight lines you had to hit in order to go under par. Future plans are to extend the pond out to 18 holes. Looking to add 3 holes the summer of 2015.
12 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Course getting better and better...
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Update for 2013: Mr. Shuie has been working on this course, when the opportunity presents itself; for the past three years.
The information provided below is still generally valid; but, I've upped the rating to a solid 3; becasue many of the holes now have a "3 level" tee that is longer than the original and forces distance; in addition to shot placement.
I would also suggest that you alot a full day to play here; once you get connected with the owner; as there are really @27 possible holes here and if time allows, Casey will probably show you all possible holes. The finishing holes are especially nice; and offer a number of possible designs; depening on pin placement.
Two shots over the Shu Pond; #5 and #8. Water not really in play (unless you're quite short), but nice view. Edit: One hole has water considerably in play these days....
Good course to practice annies (rhbh) or forehands. Fairways pretty tight and some pins only open on one side; requiring interesting putts.
Casey, the owner/designer is a wonderful young fellow. "I'm only 28, and I've got my own course in the ground." You must call him first; because, A: that's what he desires, and B: you'll need a guide. The reason this is a pro is that you'll enjoy a round with Casey tremendously.
There are alternate tee possibilities for the final three holes that make them longer/ tougher; and one brings the pond into a more dangerous position.
Cons: Dirt tees with no signs. This will probably remain the case. The course is not played enough for tee erosion to become an issue.
Homemade baskets. Edit: Innova baskets have now been purchased and are currently becoming course baskets! Does this mean Shu Pond will now be more than nine holes all the time; with the home made buckets still in use also? I'm not sure; check with Casey! While this is a con because they are not quite up to the level of normal buckets; they hold very well; and this should not be regarded as much of a con.
Two baskets used for more than one hole. Again, this will not be an issue, unless there are quite a number of players at any one time. I don't expect this to happen.
Other Thoughts: See hole info for update; some of this info is still valid; but distances have been updated by owner.
This info in related to rhbh. #1 and #2 short forehand or anheiser. #2 more drastic line. #3 tight straight fairway. #4 slight uphill anheiser. #5 230 ft. straight across pond. #6 dowhill 340 ft. #7 340 ft. back to basket for hole 5. #8 back across pond. #9 320 foot open hole back to hole 1 basket; but, watch out for the wagon loaded with logs off to your right!
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
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