2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Very nice 18-hole course tastefully spread out on beautiful land that is just perfect for disc golf and is only used for disc (no walking trails, playgrounds, etc.) I liked that each hole has its own space and is not crowded with the others, yet there is still only a short walk from hole to hole. The course is very well maintained, and it is evident that much time and effort has been put in to it, to the point of having hidden security cameras throughout the course to ensure it stays that way.
GCS has a little bit of everything with no two holes the same and no repetition on consecutive holes: 1) open and tight woods with lots of degrees in between; 2)flat holes and others with enough elevation to add interest and variety; 3) hole distances from the regular tees range from 180' to 760' and cover just about everything in between , with some legit par 4's ; 4) the wooded fairways contained forced shots going both left and right plus straight, and the more open holes give you options; 5) there is water on a few holes in the form of large creeks.
I like that each hole has something that makes it challenging (shape, distance, elevation, narrow, or water), yet nothing is insanely difficult just for the sake of being cruel.
The fancy and sturdy tee signs are proof of the thought, planning, and work put in here. Hole number, distance, and map are there of course, but also ad space which I am sure helps finance the course. The course has a train theme throughout and each hole has a signature nickname/motto. Navigation was easy with all the "next stop" signs pointing the way to the next hole. It makes two loops of 9's coming back near the parking lot between #9 and #10.
Tees are your usual material, but worked the same as concrete. All baskets in great shape, numbered, and easy to find even if hidden off the tee.
Great setting for tournaments, and not just the course, but with the added amenities of the covered picnic area with the lookout tower on top allowing for a view of about half the course.
Cons: Not a lot of anything major, mostly just some opinion things.
A couple holes had below average hole locations in my opinion of just being in the wide open middle of nowhere and are relatively easy to approach with lots of room for error and easy recovery. I am not saying all baskets need to be tucked tight in a grove somewhere, but maybe beside a single tree on one side or something to add just a bit of thought on the upshot. (it is possible that there are smaller trees planted that will eventually grow bigger and take care of this.) #1 is ok as a starting hole, #7 could have put the creek more into play as a risk/reward vs play-it-safe option, #9 , #10, and #18 all have open area baskets. (Now it was windy when I played, and if it is usually windy here, then that obviously makes these shots tougher.)
I was disappointed with #6 in the lack of the use of the electric towers on what is just a long and mostly wide open hole. Since there is nothing that can be done about the large metal man-made towers being there, and they are kind of an ugly feature on what is an otherwise beautiful course, I like the philosophy of "if you can't move them, then use them." The map and pic on DGCR showed the basket in the tower, but in reality the basket was further down taking the two towers practically out of play.
Hole 2 is great, just a minor unfortunate detail in that it does have to play across the road coming into the course. It is only disc golf traffic, but still you have to be aware of cars coming and going.
Not sure if it is possible here because of having to run plumbing/sewer lines and such, but one amenity bonus would be nice restrooms since this course is not near much of anything, however there was a port-a-potty on site.
What keeps me from rating this higher than a 4.0 is there are about 14 great holes and about 4 that are just average, which is what puts GCS just one notch lower than the best of the best in the country.
Other Thoughts: Overall, a fantastic course that is suitable for just about any level of disc golfer, especially with some of the holes having some shorter alt. tees. I would play here all the time if I lived here. And I totally recommend it to others if traveling to the area. In fact, this part of South Carolina (Clemson, Greenville, Spartanburg) makes for a pretty nice disc golf destination with a good set of very nice courses of all different varieties.
The designers, caretakers, and local players should be proud of this course (I know they are). Well done, and I would like to come back here and give it another shot!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Wide open course for about 10 holes and the other 8 are wooded and technical.
Good number of holes have benches/seating
Will test your long driving ability and short technical game.
Whoever tends to the course does a great job of switching some pin positions every month or so.
Cons: Honestly can't think of many cons for this course. Play this course.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 6 Not
Variety of Holes
Other Thoughts: This is an excellent course. It is maintained by the town of Central. This means the grass is always cut, trash taken out, and the course is clean. The layout rivals that of any professional course. You have to be good at every aspect of the game to have a great score here. The are a few opportunities for Aces but they're few and far in between. Some holes are really long and you'll need distance to par out on these. There are a few short holes but basket layout adds to the challenge. There are some open holes and some wooded holes. Just an all around excellent mixture of hole layouts and settings. Overall this is an excellent course that will challenge every aspect of your game.
2 of 8 people found this review helpful.
A Must Play
5 Helpful / 0 Not
1. A very well designed course. Great use of elevation and land features.
2. Great mix of holes, long and short, tight and open.
3. Exclusive for disc golf. Don't have to share the fairways with trail walkers.
4. Nice tee pads for not being concrete, tee signs and posts in place directing you to next tee.
5. Will challenge all parts of your game. Wind can be a huge factor.
6. Alternate tee pads bring even more variety to this course.
There are very few cons for this course, so,
1. If you are a beginner, this course may not be for you.
2. The No. 18 tee pad needs repair. The pad grid support has buckled.
3. Stray shots are punished severely.
Other Thoughts: Us upstate players have a jewel of a course to play at Central. Coming in at 6,600 feet, you will need a long game and accuracy. There are technical holes and several holes that will give you the opportunity to just air it out. Trouble abounds for errant shots especially on 8, 11, 12 and 13. If you are beginner and you want to play a course that the big boys play, this is the place! It is a tournament grade layout. My game is not quite up to the level it needs to be to play this course well, but I absolutely love playing it. It tests every part of my game and I'm better for it.
If you are not from here, and you are in the upstate SC to play, put this course on your itinerary.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
A sweet spot
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: I finally got to play this course I'd heard so much about, and it was a delight from beginning to end. It's cleverly designed, full of fun and challenging holes, with not a single bad hole among them, and lots of variety. It should provide enough challenge for better players, and at the same time be accessible to newer players, which is quite a trick.
The course covers 3 or 4 types of terrain. An open grassy hilltop, dotted with small trees (destined to become greater hazards in the coming years). A steep wooded hillside. A low, level creekside area with huge, and I mean huge, trees. And long, sloping powerline right-of-way.
Many of the par-4s, or even long par--3s, place an emphasis on shot placement---not just hitting the fairways but hitting the right spot in them to line up the next shot.
With the possible exception of the open area, there's not a bit of redundancy. After 1 round, I could remember every hole; no two seemed alike.
There are multiple tees on some holes, multiple pin placements on others. I played in a tournament, so don't know how often baskets are moved.
And this is a disc-golf-only public park, not sharing the land with other park activities. That's always a pleasure.
Cons: There are a handful of fairly open holes on the grassy hilltop, and how challenging they are depends greatly on your arm. If you've too little arm, they're routine 3s. I would imagine if you've got a big arm, they're routine 2s, at least when it's not windy.
On the wooded holes, the areas off the fairways are pretty dense. "Jail" is the word that comes to mind, and if you don't control your shots, you may be pitching back to the fairway a lot. Sometimes, even that is challenging.
Other Thoughts: The place is beautiful, and a joy to play.
It has a railway theme, with the excellent tee signs and even the "next stop" directions between holes. And railway lines on the hill in the far distance, so that a half-dozen times a day trains come cruising by, whistles blaring. You don't get ambience like that very often!
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 3 Not
Great and challenging course
Pros: Great course because it has a tremendous mix of holes that tests all parts of your game. The first few holes give you a chance at a couple of birdies because you will need them if you mess up on hole 8. After hole 8 there is a great mix of shots that require you to make a distance shot through a tight corridor. Several of the holes on the back 9 are shots that beg for you to "go for it" but if you miss, you are gonna have a hard time getting out of the woods...lay up and play safe and you lose your birdie chance. Great risk/reward holes on the back 9.
0 of 3 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Great front 9
Pros: Excellent, excellent front 9!
Hole 2 is a lot of fun and really begs you to go for it in two, but if you miss right off the tee your going to work for a four. Nice risk / reward.
Hole 4 is a down hill 450ish , id say it plays more like 350 so its also a lot of fun to really let one go.
Hole 6 plays down the power line, Very cool! I've always wanted to do that. 760' that's going down hill a bit, very nice par 4 but Im sure some rocket arms get it in three.
Hole 7 continues down the same lines, but shorter at 500' with a creek to contend with. I did not realize how deep it was before I got to it, Im glad I didnt go in!
Hole 8 was my favorite. First part of the hole before you go back over the creek felt very "park" like, would be a nice spot for a picnic. Then its a nice uphill blast to the pin. Doable it in 3 with 2 well executed shots, but not a easy bird either.
Park was pretty much empty at 530 on a Friday night, was nice to have the run of the place.
Good signage at tees. Cool pavilion with a observation deck, would be really cool during a tournament to hang out up there.
Plenty of benches
Land is just for disc golf, very cool private feel. Wonderful space, pretty clean area, felt safe.
Cons: Holes 14, 15, 16 and 17 did not live up to the rest of the course, and felt like the belonged on a different track. There not "bad" holes, the rest of the course however set the bar much above the difficultly of these 4.
Hole 13 was a great par 4, then coming down to 14 as a gimme was OK, but then backtracking back 15 to play 16 was odd. Would be great to see 15 extended and 16 come back towards 17's box, but play across the creek.
Next tee signs please! I finally realized the next tee info is on the teesigns, but I never got to looking till i was putting out. The transition to 9 was especially difficult to figure out as a first timer and solo. I found the box for 18 so I turned around!
Other Thoughts: I gave this course a 3.5, overall its a great course, and if your in the area, its well worth the time. I will come back for sure!
To make me revisit and raise my rating I would like to see some redesign on 14,15,16. A raised basket on 14 might be something easy to implement to increase the difficultly there, as well as taking another look at the flow from 15/16/17.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
The center of the upstate SC disc golf scene
Pros: Grand Central Station is simply fantastic. The course offers some great holes, lots of challenge, plenty of fun and just enough birdie chances to keep you wanting to come back for more.
- No doubt about it, this is the best course in the entire upstate of South Carolina. There are some other good ones in the region, but Grand Central is a step or two above every other that it's not even close. This course should be on the short list for the best courses in the entire state.
- The course has everything. I all acknowledge courses that have great variety, which this one most sure has, but it's the level of, and type of, variety that really stands out for me. There are tight wooded holes, where if you're on the wrong side of the fairway, you almost have no chance to advance or take direct aim at the basket. The best examples of this are #11 and 13. On #13, I threw what I thought was the perfect tee shot, I thought it was my shot of the round. That perfect tee shot ended up being too long and to the right, (I know, the story of my life), that I couldn't get a good shot around the bend. If my tee shot landed 20 feet to the left, I'd have had an easy up and down for a birdie 3; rather, I have to settle for a frustrating 4.
- On the flip side, I love how the open holes present multiple ways to play the layout. On #6 & 7, the fairways are wide open, meaning you'll have approach shots from wherever your tee shot lands. The biggest hindrances on these holes will be the lack of big arms, plus the surprisingly wider and deeper creek on #7.
- Now to the obligatory push for the course's variety. That said, this course really does give you that feel. Just take a quick stroll through the first five holes. #1 is a 290 foot, open hole; the perfect warm-up for a birdie chance or an easy 3. #2 is 444 feet, with a fairway that narrows in the middle, leading to a dogleg right approach shot for your basket. #3 is a slight downhill, dogleg right, shorter hole at 209. Another potential birdie chance or easy par. #4 is 442 foot hole that starts narrow and opens up near the hole. And #5 starts in the open to dogleg left as the hole enters the trees. It's only 313 feet, but will take a great tee shot for a birdie chance. So, just on the first five holes, you get birdie chances; longer, multi-shot layouts; wooded and open layouts; and a little bit of elevation. That trend goes on for the following 13 holes.
- It can't be understated how awesome it is that this huge piece of land is dedicated solely to disc golf. It takes so much land to be able to have big holes like #7, and the fact disc golfers don't have to worry about other park goers means it one less thing you'll have to worry about. That said, the drive into the park, down an old, narrow, country road makes you wonder if this isn't some cruel joke. But, once you get there, it's just you and the course.
- I thought it was a great move that the course designers didn't try to trick up every hole. There were definitely parts of the course where length could be added simply for making holes longer (I'm thinking of #4 & 16), but I feel that would have taken away from the course. The worst offender for a hole seeming to be overthought is #11 with a long tee shot to an opening into the woods, followed by a narrower fairway to the basket. I hope the designers resist the urge to constantly tinker with the course. Don't mess with a great thing. We get enough of that in Charlotte.
Cons: Very little to complain about here. These are more observations that out and out faults.
- I think the course would flow and/or play better if the front and back 9s were reversed. As it is, the course's best three hole stretch is #6 - 8; whereas the current stretch of #14 - 17 are all shorter, birdie chances. I've always felt you want to end your course with the toughest holes/ending on a high note. You flip the front and back 9s, the tough stretch of holes become #15 - 17, and the birdie stretch becomes holes #5 - 8. You want to get your birdies early on, then hold on for dear life on the back 9. More than anything else, this brings up the debate of hole placement and whether the place in a round holes are placed has any impact on the course's flow and feel.
- Be careful on hole #2 as you're throwing over the entrance road. I didn't realize this until I actually threw. The only people driving here are disc golfers, so they should also be aware of this layout as they either just played the hole or are about to.
- The course has nothing in terms of amenities. There's a porta potty by the parking lot (at least there's lots of privacy and wooded holes throughout the course). No water fountains and also a lack of benches and trash cans throughout the course. That said, there's something enjoyable about the primitive feel. Disc golfers don't need to be pampered with luxuries such as benches.
- On #15, you play the hole, then have to turn around and walk back down the fairway to get to the bridge. This is more important for the group behind you to know, so you don't get thrown upon.
- Better signage is needed in a couple spots on the course. After #8, the closest two holes are #14 & 18. You actually have to walk past #18 to get to #9. Transition from #12 to 13 and better signage to indicate you cross #10's fairway after finishing #18 would also be helpful.
Other Thoughts: It's been a long time since I had so much anticipation for a course. Grand Central Station was everything I was hoping, and then some. One of the best, new courses I've played in a long time.
- Whether you enjoy the idea, or think it's a little overdone, you have to commend the idea that the designers buy into the GCS theme. You see the railroad logo on every course sign. Now, if they really wanted to go the whole 9 yards, we'll need to see the railroad crossing gates and lights set up at the front of the course.
- Also, what's up with the spiral staircase at one of the picnic shelters at the front of the course? What do we need to be looking for that we need a spotter?
- It'll be interesting to see what improvements are made to this course. The best thing that could be done is adding a permanent restroom and water fountains by the parking lot. The problem, I guess, is the issue of having all of that maintained. You're only 5 minutes from gas stations and restaurants, so it's not like you're really roughing it.
- There's just so much to like here. It was a thoroughly enjoyable round from start to (mostly) finish. Maybe I was just worn down by the end, or that the hole really is simple, but #18 felt like a hole that was a mundane, straight ahead 4. The energy wasn't there to try for getting a 3, so maybe I missed the intended challenge.
- I couldn't spot a true doppelganger for this course. I could sense elements of Hornets Nest and Renaissance in Charlotte and New Quarter in Williamsburg, VA. That's a compliment that this course has its own feel, it means you'll have to check it out.
- The course is a solid 4. I easily could go higher, and see why people are giving the course a 5. If a 4.0 rating is on the low end, that's all you need to know. This is a must play for anyone in the region, or driving along I-85. This is now a course I'm looking forward to visiting again in the future.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: -Best course in South Carolina hands down
- Great looking park
- Best signs I have ever seen
- Kept clean nice little viewing area for tournaments
- Great Mix of tight open holes, elevation
- There a few holes that you can really air it out
- Loved the Tee Pads, best I have ever seen.
Cons: - only one porta potty
Other Thoughts: - Will come again
1 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Great course that will only get better
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: In the conversation for best course in SC and part of what I think is the trilogy of great new courses (2011 - present) in SC which includes GCC, Chester State Park and Socastee Recreation Park. Teepads are mats similar to what you would see in a restaurant kitchen and they are very large with sand beneath and framed. I really like these type of teepads ever since seeing them at Kure Beach in early 2011 and several courses in the South now have them as well as they are used at Hampton Park for the Charleston Classic. The signage is also spectacular. There are several holes that could qualify as the signature hole as noted below for rhbh,
#2 - Great tweener hole (par 3 or 4) where 2 is rare for an average player and possible signature hole. Low shot through a tunnel of trees to road and then anhyzer or thumber to basket.
#3 - Very tight downhill to short basket to right or longer basket uphill to left with small green.
#4 - Two basket locations and I prefer the original up the hill to the right. The original plays as an anhyzer downhill and then up hill. A 2 is phenominal.
#5 - Fun open downhill shot to tree guarded tunnel with basket tucked in the back.
#8 - Possibly the signature hole with a tight tunnel shot and low ceiling to a creek then over the creek up a hill in narrow gap.
#11 - Possibly the signature hole with a wide open downhill shot to a very narrow gap in the woods then another 200' downhill around a corner with the basket sitting atop a drop off behind. A 3 is spectacular on this difficult hole but I did see a youtube video of Schweb making a 3 with a fantastic tee shot and then blind thumber to the basket.
#13 - Two difficult teepads and possibly the signature hole with narrow downhill tunnel shot down to basket on right side of small green. Both teepads make it difficult to get close for a 2.
#14 - Fun downhill ace run depending on basket placement with creek behind
#15 - Great hole across the creek and fun hyzer or anhyzer from short tee to a tree guarded green. The long teepad makes this very challenging.
#17 - Frustrating hole for me but very challenging. I have made 2on it and taken a 6 in both tournaments I have played there and seen others take 4 more often than 3. Elevated hyzer uphill on a tight tree lined fairway. Better to be right than left off the fairway for a chance at 3. I have seen several people get in the trees on the left and had no chance at 3.
Cons: #2 playing across the entrance road is a little dangerous unless someone is spotting. #3 long basket placement green needs more attention due to brush impeding on the basket as well as low lying limbs. When I played in Sept 2013, it appeared The course can also get slick in spots such as #8 and #14 - #17 teepad so be careful if rain has been present in the area recently.
Other Thoughts: If you vote less than 4 stars for this course, you need to have a serious argument to back it up. I think it is between GCC and Stoney Hill for best course in SC and both are 4.5 if not 5 star courses. For #2, I think it would be interesting to see another teepad added 50' in front of the current pad or put another basket placement to the left the current basket and a little further back behind the large tree to have the option of playing a variation of the hole like on #3. The only throwaway hole appears to be #1 which is a straight forward shot for a 2 or 3 unless you throw in tree line on the right which is comprised of an old barbwire fence. I also wish great courses with this type of length would not only show the distance from the tee but also the length into the basket when in a fairway like in traditional golf. I only recall seeing this at Nevin on a few holes when you are about 150' from the basket. #6, #8 and #11 are good examples of where this could definitely help with disc selection in tournaments. Also, bring water if you plan to play this course in the heat because it is long and lots walking with some elevation. With it being so close to Clemson, football game weekends may interfere with hotels. I played a tournament there during homecoming weekend and rooms nearby were $350 and sold out immediately. If you plan to play a tournament, check accommodation availability before registering or plan to stay with friends or in Greenville. Also, check the wind if playing out of the woods into open areas.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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