Great Par 64 Layout with Unique Holes
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Ship Rock succeeds in having holes that are fun, strategically interesting, and diverse. The layout features seven well-designed Par 4s and one Par 5 (at a ~950-975 rating?) and winds its way over an old farm and inside a big bend of Mill Creek. Cool and unique shots abound. Wrapping a big hyzer around the remains of a barn (Hole 5) and a tough 150' shot to the edge of a steep drop off with the pin below (Hole 11) stand out as highlights. I really enjoyed the spike hyzer approaches on Holes 7 and 16, and the drive/approach strategic decisions on Holes 1 and 4. A birdie means something on just about every hole, and the designers did a good job creating Par 3s that are both ace-able and bogey-able.
Cons: Holes 13-14 and 17-18 are weak compared to the rest, although Holes 13 and 14 should be able to be improved through pin placements or tree plantings. The course seems susceptible to mud and wind. The open holes didn't bother me too much as it's fun to let a drive rip, but I don't think I'd look forward to those holes on a very windy day.
Other Thoughts: The course is very well-designed, especially when you consider it's the work of a couple talented local high school/college students. They put in the hard work for good tees, signs, and baskets, but also used their imagination to create a couple holes that cannot be found anywhere else. Ship Rock is a great course to play in conjunction with Buchmiller Park and is a fantastic asset for the area. Great job!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Well Done Bomber
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Long, mostly open course that stays interesting throughout.
-Intense elevation changes that the layout takes full advantage of
-OB is in play on almost every long hole which protects neighboring fairways and adds a technical element to the open holes
-New discatchers are some of the best baskets on which i've had the privilege of playing.
-Good signage and flypads
Cons: -Holes 13 and 14 stood out as being a little below the standard set by the rest of the course. 13 is a flat open 300' hole and 14 is a flat open tweener type hole that is too long for a par 3 but a fairly easy par 4. I think both could have greens carves into the rough to the right to bring them closer to the creek and make them more interesting and technical.
Other Thoughts: I wanted to talk about holes 15-17 specifically in my review because i have to admit that my expectations of these holes were colored by reviewers that had come before me. I thought they would be long boring throw-away holes and found that nothing could be further from the truth. 15 is a challenging uphill tee shot with OB on both sides to a big sweeping 2nd shot from hill top to hill top. 16 plays downhill to line of trees that runs across the fairway. A long drive still needs good placement in one of the gaps to give a good look at a 3. 17 is one of my favorite holes on the course. The OB on the right and rough on the left narrow as you proceed up the fairway. The more you try to bite off on the tee the more challenging your 1st shot is but a good tee shot makes a three very reachable.
I have really enjoyed my rounds here and try to make the 45 minute drive as often as possible. Some additional amenities like benches would improve things and i've heard that there will be additional trees planted which will be awesome. There aren't many courses like this on the east coast. I think it can be hard to build an open course that doesn't feel repetitive and chore-like but i think this is one that's done right.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Some Sensational Holes Followed By Some Not So Great!
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: After reading previous reviewer Croow's review, I was tempted to just cut and paste his review in it's entirety. His is a extremely well written review and spot on with the information he's conveying.
Upon arriving at Ship Rock's sign on a busy county road and driving back a few hundred yards, I wasn't sure as to what kind of a course I was arriving at? A small private course? A large county park course? Turns out this is a county park set in the middle of farm country. It's a wonderful, large rolling area with hills, wooded parts, creeks, etc. And it seems to be disc golf exclusive!
The pads are great fly pads. Nice new Discatcher baskets and great signs with all the information including little arrows hanging underneath pointing you to the next hole.
The course starts out with a major "WOW' factor in my opinion. # 1 is either a downhill 870' (tee sign distance) or 704' (on-line map listed) Par 4 curving around a grove of trees. Bigger arms than me could throw over the trees and shortcut the hole. Recreational types still get to start their round with a big downhill and then possibly cut through the trees. Either way it was a really fun way to begin a round.
Then # 2 is about a 225' touch shot to a basket sitting just in front of a small creek. The tee area is very neatly carved into the side of the hillside. Another fun, great hole.
Then I really liked # 3. It was another hole carved into the hillside where a lot of work has gone into building and engineering this hole. Players are throwing uphill with danger on the right.
I don't think I've been so wowed by a course after the first three holes as I was after these the first three here.
Later # 11 absolutely makes my All-Time list of Unique, Clever Holes. From the tee it appears to be just another 230' hyser throw through the trees. But what makes this hole so unique is when you walk up to find the basket, the basket is hidden down an almost a straight vertical drop of a hill (maybe 50-60 feet). And just beyond the basket is the creek. So your simple little 230' annie now becomes a most interesting tee shot. Throw it hard enough and you could blindly get it down the hill to the basket. Or you could have a most interesting putt straight downhill. Too hard of a tee off and you could find yourself in the creek. Loved this hole!
Another clever, fun hole was the one where the old barn was removed and you're now throwing slightly uphill up over the old foundation works. It's a nice change of pace from the wooded and open holes on this course.
Those players with big arms will love this course.
Cons: As previously stated, the last six holes are overly long, sometimes boringly open, sometimes uphill and sometimes brutally hard. By the time I reached this point, I was spent after a long, hot day so I just walked the course with co-founder Travis and his friend. The course is built and designed for a player like Travis, who throws 400' straight drives and is young and strong.
Other Thoughts: I would love to see a set of Rec/Beginner tee pads built here at Ship Rock. I loved playing the front nine plus a couple more but the final six are probably too much for many recreational players to really enjoy. If you're an advanced/pro player, or a young strong rec player wanting to play some great well designed holes, you gotta come and experience Ship Rock DGC.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Great tee pads (fly pads). Great new DISCatcher baskets. Really interesting holes (but see below). Area is dedicated to disc golf so no interference. Nice mix of hole lengths. Mostly open but some wooded holes as well. All the par 3 holes were fun and not ridiculous. Plenty of opportunities to air out your arm. Pretty easy to find your way around.
Cons: Lots of long wide open holes that get boring after a while unless you can accurately throw 450-500 feet (see below). No amenities. Directions here are accurate but the turn-in comes up unexpectedly on a heavily traveled road with fast moving cars.
Other Thoughts: As I played the opening 12 holes, I was thinking "4.5". When I played the last 6, I was thinking "3.5 or lower" so I settled on 4.0 as a compromise. I got par on all par 3s (actually birdied #5) but I don't have a big arm so I bogeyed most of the longer holes (with at least one double bogey).
It starts out great with a par 4 curve around a wooded area and the basket tucked here the hill side which wasn't that hard despite being listed as 704 feet. #2 is a short from the hillside through some woods to a basket on the other side on a clearing. #3 is a short one up a narrow path with a small landing area (big roll away possibility).
#4 is the first long open hole (par 4, 723 feet, gradual downhill) and was fun to air it out. #5 is a picturesque 244-footer around the remains of a stone building to an elevated basket. #6 is an 853-foot uphill par 5 which was fun for the first one of these.
#7 is a 696-foot par 4 slightly downhill with a mando and a tree line that you need to negotiate. #8 is a fun little 358-footer downgrade with the basket protected by a few trees.#9 is a 486-footer that follows a curving fairway that narrows to a basket in the woods up a small incline.
#10 is a fairly easy straightforward hole with a few trees to get your confidence back. #11 is the shortest hole (204 feet) but perilous as you have a sharp left turn with a cliff and the basket at the base of the cliff. If you overshoot, your disc goes into a large creek where you may lose it. For #12, you throw off a wooden deck through some light woods with the basket out in a clearing.
After this is where I got disappointed. #13 is a flat straight 298-footer in a wide open field. #14 is a flat straight 614 footer farther down that same wide open field. #15 is a 579-footer up a big hill but also wide open. #16 is a 640-footer down the same hill with one tree line to negotiate. Then #17 is a 538-footer up the same hill again (just farther down). Then you finish with #18 which is a 325-footer that starts up the hill and then levels out. It is also wide open and not bad except that the previous 5 holes had already bored me as just drudgery.
It seems such a shame that the course ends on such a boring but still difficult set of holes. If/when I return I will probably just play 1-13, then 5-13, and then 5-6 back to my car.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Great Addition to the Lancaster Circuit
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - This course was very easy to follow. The signage was simple and never left you guessing. The progression of the holes felt very natural. Somebody obviously put a lot of thought into the design/layout of this course.
- Holes 3, 10, and 11 added some great variety to the course with tight shots and several obstructions.
- Lots of fun elevation changes and some interesting mandos.
Cons: - As of 4/9/13 a large pile of debris in the middle of hole 5 (looks like they tore down an old barn) made this hole a little dangerous.
- This may seem a little petty, but a bench or two (and maybe a few trash cans along the way) would be great amenities for this course. Right now there's no place to sit and rest (save for on the ground), and you will notice the occasional litter (which hopefully would be solved by the addition of trash cans).
Other Thoughts: - Don't overshoot the baskets for holes 2 and 16 unless you want to go swimming for your disc. These baskets are backed-up by a large creek.
- This course is very open (not much shade) so bring sunscreen and be prepared to fight the wind on holes 1, 4, 6, 7, 8, 15, 16, 17, and 18.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Big Arms Delight
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This area is clearly designated for disc golfers only! You wont find any hikers, or sunbathers, or dog walkers, etc.. This place is a beautiful property with great elevation changes and a winding creek, with overlooking cliffs, well off any road. That said:
The views are great. keep your head up and look around on every hole. It's just beautiful.
The signage is great. Not only the tee signs with distances, but also the arrows under the baskets pointing to the next tee.
All the tee-pads are fly-tees, and were level with plenty of run-up, (save for hole 12).
With holes abundant in 600ft or more, this is a great course to practice throwing hard and getting that big D. If you've a big arm and can throw 350-400+ ft...you'll be ringing in birdies. If you're looking to practice a 700ft downhill dream, it's here. Likewise, a 700ft uphill monster? it's here.
(Update June 2013) Now with a garbage can at the bulletin board!
Cons: It's the little things that separate the good courses from the best courses. it's hard to ding courses for the little things, but little things add up to great things.
With the length of the course, i don't remember any benches to take a rest. I could see older/younger, or disabled persons wanting a break.
(Update June 2013 - With the grass high and fairways mowed, the out of bounds was obvious) In the winter-time, the grass is gone and the out-of-bounds ropes were invisible to my eyes until i literally tripped over one. it's a small gauge white string, and in some places, staked in the ground with tree branches. Thicker gauge yellow rope with low profile (1' x 1" lumber) stakes would be a welcome upgrade.
I don't know if it were my eyes or not, but some of the tee signs included trees that just weren't there which left me looking at the sign, then the fairway, back to the sign, back to the fairway...then confusion.
If you cant throw far (as in greater than 350') you'll look at a 700ft hole with little to no obstacles and become bored. there are many - many long holes with little to no obstacles that will leave you with the feeling, "i guess i'll just throw till i can putt"
Safety. Few holes will put you in harms way. Nothing really bad except for holes 4 and 10. Once you finish the previous holes, you will literally walk up the fairway to the next tee-pad. With such a large amount of land and countless 600+ft holes, i still find myself questioning why am walking 40ft up a fairway into someone's drive with so much land around me.
As of now, the parking was limited (for the stone parking) and the driveway was muddy (on this particular day). it's not a big deal, but i think you could fit 6-10 cars on the stone (i think) I don't think you could get stuck, but beware in muddy conditions if you're parking off the stone in a 2WD car.
Other Thoughts: This course is in serious need of short tees (like a Blue tee long position and a white tee short position and even a red tee - recreational position).
I think this course is a prime example of what a course could be if multiple tees AND multiple pins were utilized. That alone could generate countless and unpredictable layouts accessible to players of all skill levels. I can throw 300ft consistently. i would see a 700ft hole and think - "ok...another 4"
On some of the open field shots, i think a roped off "island" hole would add to the challenge, rather than "Drive. Drive. Putt. Repeat"
Little things disc golfers would LOVE to see: A mailbox stocked with scorecards, and drop box for lost/found discs. Buried/painted bricks on the fairways to gauge distance: Blue 300', White 200', and Red 100'. Likewise, how about a buried marker around the pins indicating 40' for a jump putt? One little amenity i just love, is a vertical 4" x 4" piece of lumber with pegs to hang your disc bag at the tee-pads.
If you're playing in the summer-time BRING WATER! There isn't much cover on the back 9 and if the sun is out and the heat is on...you'll be hurting.
This is a great addition to the local courses, and I'm VERY excited to see the direction the local club takes! kudos to a beautiful course, albeit long!
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Better than expected
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Excellent use of property and a well layed out course with several signature holes. The course played much longer than I expected but several of those longer holes play downhill for some spectacular drives. Mostly open course with about 4 very unique wood holes. Most of the longer open holes have some sort of elevation involved that gives the course its "fun factor" to play and keeps the holes from becoming to similar. Course flow worked out really well bringing you in and out of the woods throughout the course.
A lot of work seems to have gone into the course featuring new signs & tees, platform tee, rope rails, elevated tees in the hill side and good clearing of the wooded holes & paths to next hole. I thought it looked like a well established course even though it's new.
It's a great addition to the Lancaster area courses and a real change of pace by adding this style of course.
Signature holes in my opinion 5, 15 & 16. Most unique hole I ever played - 11
Cons: Hole 4/6/7 - the fairways need a little more work to determine OB. There is a rope fence but it's still a little difficult to determine and see if playing for the first time. Perhaps a low solid construction fence or hang something from the rope. Hole 6 in my opinion should have a mando to keep you from throwing over 7 fairway. I totally missed 7's mando.
I played on a mostly frozen ground but really concerned this course could become very muddy at times on the lower holes.
Needs directional arrow top of hill on 3 pointing to 4 tee.
Hole 9 should have a mando to keep you from throwing into 13 fairway. Needs directional arrow on 9 basket pointing at 10 tee otherwise everyone without map will walk to 13 tee first.
No rec or beginner tees on the longer holes.
Other Thoughts: If you are looking for a longer course which seems to be trending these days, this is the course for you. If you are a beginner you will struggle with length but this course offers an excellent chance to work on longer drives with less concern of lost of disc.
With Buchmiller only 10 min away it makes a great combo day but this course is worth the travel by itself.
Need a couple of long poles (conduit) or branches on holes 2 & 11 to get your disc out of the water.
Would be nice to have a port-a-pot., picnic table & loss disc return area.
Real interested to see what this course is like in the summer. Course is just missing enough minor things to keep me from rating this a 4 but the course is well on its way.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Tough for beginners
Pros: Thanks to the designers for bringing another disc golf course to the Lancaster area. Course uses existing terrain well. Very nice signs at each tee box show you what to expect on each hole. Small wooden signs on the bottom of each basket point you directly to the next tee box and eliminate one of the most frustrating parts of playing an unfamiliar course.
Cons: Having taken up the game this year, this course is extremely difficult for a beginner, especially if you aren't able to throw the disc over 300 ft on a consistent basis. Hole 6 is 850 feet uphill and a dogleg right. It takes me five shots to get close to the basket, virtually taking birdie away. The course gets extremely muddy after a rain due to the creek in the lower part of the course,making play difficult, even dangerous at times. Many holes require two or more bomb shots to start and have no trees along the fairways to at least add more visual appeal to the holes and guide you to the basket. This results in several holes looking too similar to each other, though it is understandable for a newly established course. If trees are planted as I have heard they will be it will be a great help.
Other Thoughts: Be very careful when walking up to look over the cliff to the basket on hole 11. There are several small stumps in the ground from trees that were removed, leaving a trip hazard that could send you over the edge of the cliff. This also exists on other holes on the course. Overall this is a good course for an experienced player who can throw with distance. Buchmiller is a better course for a beginner, but playing here and returning to Buchmiller will make the shorter course seem much easier.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice tee locations, with quality signs, 4'x10' flat, rubber teepads, surrounded by mulch.
New baskets, including a practice basket. Plenty of space to warm-up.
Don't know how often the neighbouring creek floods, but it had recently done so prior to our playing, rending teepads 9, 14, and 17 unusable, and the greens/fairways of 2, 13, 14, and 16 quite mucky.
As others have mentioned, the out-of-bounds is inconsistent, and not always well-marked. Probably best to play all parallel airways as ob, and as the course matures, hopefully there will be a narrow strip of high grass to define the lines.
Considering about half the holes are bombers, the 10' long teepad felt a bit short.
The course is set on former farmland, bordered by a wide creek along 2/3rds, and fields the other 1/3rd. While the land closest to the creek, which holds a portion of the course, is quite flat, the remaining land, containing the bulk of the course, irregularly slopes down towards it. A rim of woods and an abandoned barn provide obstacles, preventing the course from being just a pure grip-n-rip.
That said, approximately half the holes are 500'+, with the length, relatively-distant ob, and, at times, some squeeze-points near the basket providing the challenge. Another ~quarter of holes are similar in openness to these, but at 325'+/- 25', are reachable from the tee by a larger audience. The remaining ~quarter of holes aren't about distance (~225', +/-), but about touch, with trees to avoid and/or specific lines to hit to have the birdy chance.
Navigation: The dirt, single-track path leading to the parking lot is roughly opposite three blue silos. With the map, navigating the course is fairly simple, as long as you remember to back track on #4 (tee to left ~200' after exiting woods, basket ~500' to the right), and #10 (from basket-9, find path through cluster of small trees along right-side of narrowing fairway-9).
Favourite holes: #5 (Touch), requires you to avoid the barn, along with some branches on the left, to find the basket in an elevated position, just off the corner. #16 (Bomb). Steadily downslope at the start, even a good drive will make you think about how to avoid the tall row of trees between you and the wide-open basket, sitting far away on the other side of them.
Bombers should enjoy this course. Technicians will only be able to scratch that particular itch a couple of times. The course is about a 2.74 for me, and I will certainly consider playing it again when passing through the area.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: New Course. New Tees. Well thought out holes. Good Use of Elevation. Excellent signage and navigation. Right off main highway and easy to find. Nice scenery. Great flow and some nice risk/reward with the rough and water coming into play at times. Extremely fun and definitely challenging course.
Cons: Ob's are a little unclear sometimes especially on some of the long open holes. No noticeable restroom facilities or trash cans. (picky, i know, but not a whole lot to place as cons)
Other Thoughts: This is my second run through this new park. I played here in early September and the rough was still pretty unforgiving and the view was totally different due to the cornfields and other foilage being plentiful. As i have mentioned before, I have no real arm and do not drive far at all. However, this was not an issue despite some long holes. I loved the layout and brought a friend who had not played here yet, and he was very impressed with the fun factor of the holes from the get go. Most holes are fairly open but they all add some challenge with obstacles and the ob's. The wooded holes are especially fun and seem placed perfectly to add to the flow. holes 1, 3, 5, 11 and 12 were definitely my personal favorites and each had special touches that made them unique. The first time I played here was early in the morning and the dew made for an extremely wet day due to the open fairways. Today, even though Hurricane Sandy was over a month ago, the holes in the back of the course closer to the creek were just crazy muddy. It made it extremely difficult to walk let alone to tee off, but at the same time does not seem like it will be a regular issue. Overall this course is quickly becoming one of my favorites. It is a good almost two hour drive for me to get to, but it is definitely worth it especially with other courses not too far. It is challenging and could be frustrating for some beginners due to the long holes, but I enjoy a challenge and look forward to playing here again soon.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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