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Salisbury, NC

Catawba College

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1.675(based on 9 reviews)
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13 0
dndelli
Gold level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 16.9 years 138 played 134 reviews
1.00 star(s)

Catawba College 2+ years

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:Aug 14, 2021 Played the course:once

Pros:

Catawba College is a beautiful, albeit small college campus in the middle of Rowan County. It sports a disc golf course of the same name that weaves its way through the middle of the small campus and has nine holes with DISCatcher baskets. The tees are natural, with little stone pavers on the ground to indicate the suggested tee location. I had to use a map to find these, but they were all there.

The course is a great beginners course, and would be a good place for college students who have never played the game to try it out and spend some time between classes. More experienced players will likely be able to create their own safari layouts.

There really isn't much elevation around the course to be used, but Hole 4 was a fun downhill touch shot that was an absolute treat to throw.

The course is a birdie/ace run paradise. Hole 5, in particular, is a short hole with a major backstop behind it - so it is a great place to get aggressive and run that ace.

Cons:

While it features navigational woes, and is a relatively tame layout (both of which I could likely look past), the biggest problem with Catawba College's disc golf are the numerous safety concerns. The course is packed into a pretty small campus, and there is likely to be a lot of foot traffic around the course on any given day. I can't imagine rounds wouldn't last a while as players wait for students to walk by. Many of the holes are also on lawns that I am sure are fairly popular for students to lay a blanket down and study/read on.

I played this course on what apparently was move-in day for the new Fall Semester, so while there wasn't a lot of traffic on the holes, there were a lot of cars parked around the course. Many of the holes play near campus roads and parking lots, so cars are going to be around - an errant shot could hit a car. Hole 6 even plays across the road. Hole 4 throws downhill, with a parking lot shortly behind the basket.

Hole 9 plays right in a packed-in area around one of the residential halls. Multiple sidewalks around the basket and fairway.

Hole 8, at least based on the day I played it, needs to be redesigned or removed. Directly between the tee and the basket is a basketball court with a tall fence. You can't throw around the right side of the basketball court because the volleyball pits are there. You don't want to throw around the left side of the basketball court because there is a parking lot there. When I played, large athletic buses were parked in the spots right beside the court. The play then is to throw a shot over the basketball courts, and then if you have an errant shot, short and to the right is a gazebo, where people were having a nice chat when I played.

I think it is telling that of all the safety concerns this course has, the fact that Holes 4 &5 have crossing fairways is the least noteworthy, says something.

Other Thoughts:

Catawba College is a beautiful campus, and I do think this course is probably a great fun way for students to kill some time between classes. Overall the course was nice to play, and the campus was well kept. But due to the number of safety concerns I have about the course, I don't think I could give it higher than a 1.0 rating. A beginner playing with a cheap store bought frisbee probably isn't much of a concern and honestly, that is probably who the course is designed to accommodate. For most other players though, I'd probably advise only coming out during college breaks when the campus is likely to be mostly empty.

Favorite Holes: 4 & 5
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6 0
pmay5
Gold level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 21 years 484 played 248 reviews
1.50 star(s)

At least the campus is nice! 2+ years

Reviewed: Played on:Jun 26, 2020 Played the course:once

Pros:

Older DISCatchers most are in good shape but a few were leaning.
Most of the holes are in grassy areas between buildings on this pretty campus.
You do get to see most of the campus during your round.
Not too many chances to lose a disc.

Cons:

No tee signs, markers or tee pads that I could consistently find. I used UDISC and guessed at the tee spot.
#3, 4 and 5 baskets are all in the same area, with some criss crossing fairways. If several are playing at the same time, it could get tricky.
#9 plays across the front of a building, parking lot on the left and you have to cross the main sidewalk halfway down the fairway.
The holes are in clusters of two (and one with three) spread across the campus. They all are on grassy areas, but at least 4 of the holes are in areas where I could see students crossing on a regular basis.
#9 does not finish anywhere close to #1, even though there is a similar "front lawn", like #1, on the other side of the main drive. This is the downside to seeing "most of the campus", half of that is on the way back to your vehicle.

Other Thoughts:

Nice little campus course to provide some recreation and exercise for the students. Hopefully, that exercise does not involve jumping out of the way of discs. It looks like #3 has been moved (judging from the map on this site) and looking at the area were it formerly was, that looks like a good idea.
#1 is a fun opening hole, flat, mostly open, right at the front entrance to campus. #2 was a short downhiller, through large, old growth trees, those two were not bad. Most of the other holes did have safety issues. #9 is a long finishing hole, and I caught it at the perfect time, during summer break.
The grass had been mowed and the campus looks nice, but it doesn't look like much has been done to this course (except for moving #3) since it was put in. It would really help the playability if several of the holes could be relocated - to break up 3,4 and 5 - #8 now has a B-ball court in the fairway - finish closer to the the front of campus. But, there is another Niner and an 18 hole course also in this town of 35,000, and it is only about 30 minutes from Charlotte, so I can see why not a lot of time is spent on this course.
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5 0
eric_vdberg
Bronze level trusted reviewer
Experience: 41 years 1610 played 40 reviews
1.50 star(s)

Bring a map! 2+ years

Reviewed: Played on:Aug 24, 2018 Played the course:once

Pros:

9 DISCatcher baskets that are numbered and in good shape.
Fun to play, brings elevation and foliage into play on most holes..
Would be a quick fun round if you knew where the markers were (see below).
Friendly students willing to help with navigation.

Cons:

Navigation - a map is necessary; baskets are in groups isolated from each other, and there are no directional signs to get you from one place to the next. Wrapped or painted spokes pointing to the next tee would be quite helpful, although there are long walks between the groups of baskets.
Many of the small tee markers are almost entirely buried under grass, and have only number and par on them.
#5's fairway crosses #4's fairway, then you have to walk back past the tee to get to #6.
#6 throws over a road by a stadium entrance, so possible safety issues there.
Parking is somewhat limited, especially on the side streets when school is in session.

Other Thoughts:

I was able to eventually find all of the tees with help from several students, but spent twice as much time looking for tees as playing the course. I did try to kick the grass away somewhat from the small tee marker stones to make them more visible.
Painting over "Par #" with hole distance, and next tee arrows would be quite helpful.
The course was really jammed into the areas between the buildings, but that is about all they could have done with the available land.
I enjoyed the course as another one to check off of the list, but certainly not a destination course.
I commend the designers/installers for exposing college students to disc golf and managing to get a course in here.
I would rate it higher if the navigation issues were addressed.
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7 0
KenanFlagler01
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Experience: 14.2 years 198 played 192 reviews
1.00 star(s)

2+ years

Reviewed: Played on:Oct 6, 2017 Played the course:once

Pros:

Catawba College is a very pretty campus in Salisbury, NC and the disc golf course traverses central parts of the campus.

+ Very nice campus, pretty surroundings; manicured grass (park style golf)

+ Nice new baskets

+ Friendly students to point you to the next hole, which is nice because you will likely need help with navigation (see cons)

+ No rough to speak of; no risk of disc loss

+ Ace runs

+ Great course to introduce brand new players to the game

Cons:

I don't want to bash this course because I did have an enjoyable time here, but I want readers to have a clear picture of the course so they can decide if and when to play it.

- While the campus (and hence the course) is very pretty, it's the heart of an active college campus! I played on a school day and there were students and professors walking around everywhere. You have to be aware and wait to throw when no one is in the way.

- Hole 2's basket is right by a parking lot. When I played, a maintenance truck was literally parked 5 feet from the basket. I didn't make a run at the basket because it wasn't worth the risk.

- Hole 3 had to be pulled because (shocker!) it was smack dab the middle of a busy college quad! It looked like the student union (or at least a popular student hang out) is there. A student walking by told me it was pulled and was very helpful with directions.

- Hole 9 is also one that seems somewhat dangerous because of people walking and not being able to see them because of buildings and trees bordering the fairway.

- Navigation is not easy here. Tees are marked with bricks in the grass. There are no next tee signs, so you have to rely on the UDisc map to get you to the approximate area where you can then look for the marked brick.

- This is a very short course and won't be much of a challenge to golfers who have played more than a few times.

Other Thoughts:

If you're in Salisbury, this is an easy course to bag. Just remember that pedestrians have the right of way and be careful throwing here!
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5 0
nevets4433
Silver level trusted reviewer
Experience: 12.4 years 62 played 60 reviews
1.50 star(s)

A Small Campus with a Smaller Course 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Feb 12, 2016 Played the course:once

Pros:

Catawba College has a quaint college campus that is a pretty nice place to walk around. Classic red brick architecture and well manicured small fields make the scenery here a definite plus.

The disc golf course is a series of well kept baskets scattered across the small campus. Taking a walking tour by DG of the campus was fairly interesting. Many college courses tend to be located distant from the main part of campus but that is certainly not the case here.

There is not a whole lot of difficulty to the course as it is currently laid out, and I can definitely see this as a great place to introduce new players to the game. My guess is that is by design. Nestled in the middle of campus, this is clearly a course that could be played in-between classes with very little difficulty and from that perspective would definitely be nice for the target audience - the student body.

Cons:

The layout of the campus here makes creation of a solid DG course very difficult. The resulting course has a few issues.

Navigation is really difficult. I was unable to find may of the tees as they are only single blue brick markers on the ground. Even using the course map I had a terribly difficult time finding many of the tees and gave up on a few.

Many of the holes have opportunity for interference. Holes play in between buildings, near walkways where students are passing by, and 6 seems to play across a paved roadway. In cramped quarters like this, it is imperative that golfers keep a keen eye to avoid accidents with pedestrian, building, and vehicle.

Most of the holes seemed to be very short "pitch-and-putts" and the lack of distance and obstacle prevents the course from being terribly enjoyable.

Navigation is also a bit of trouble from a layout perspective because many of the holes require significant backtracking to get from basket to the next tee, or alternatively involve very long walks forward without any signage or guidance. It seems the ground covered between holes is at times longer than the holes themselves. Given the available terrain, I am not sure there is any way around this. It is imperative to bring the map to have any chance of successful navigation.

Other Thoughts:

I am not really sure how to rate this course. It was difficult to navigate and a bit cumbersome to play. After some initial frustration, I stopped searching for the tees as much when they were not obvious and simply chose to enjoy the surroundings to make the best of things. With some visible tee markers/signs and some navigation clues, this course could be at least salvageable for a practice loop, but as it stands now it is quite confusing.

As I was walking around campus, I did realize that it doesn't seem that this course, even given its location right in the middle of the buildings, gets much play at all. It seems that people probably pass these baskets by on a daily basis while hardly noticing their presence.
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0 18
amccarrison
Experience: 35 played 4 reviews
5.00 star(s)

Perfect Salisbury College Course! 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Mar 3, 2015 Played the course:5+ times

Pros:

No trash on the campus.
Quiet and peaceful campus environment.
Updated baskets for each of the nine holes.

Cons:

Lack of signage between holes.
For first time players ... a map is necessary.
Natural tees ... no concrete.
One of the holes .. you must throw over the road by the stadium.

Other Thoughts:

Overall .. the best nine hole college course in Salisbury and Rowan County.
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8 0
DiscGolfCraig
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 20 years 605 played 549 reviews
1.50 star(s)

Catawba College. The smoke stack says it all. 2+ years

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:Jul 6, 2014 Played the course:once

Pros:

Catawba College's nine hole course is really a campus tour in disguise. With baskets weaving throughout the grounds, you get to see everything the college has to offer.
- This is a very simple, yet somewhat enjoyable course. My round was a relaxing, two-disc carrying walk through this historical college, taking in the sights and sounds of the school. My enjoyment may have had a lot to do with the fact I was playing on a summer Sunday afternoon, when the college was virtually empty.
- The course has a little variety. In terms of length, your basically playing the same shot as there is very variance in length. Holes range from 155 to 265 feet. The only hole that actually played long, relatively speaking, was #8, which is a slight uphill, 260 foot hole. The sight says hole distances are estimates, and I'd venture to guess this hole is closer to 300 feet. Also, because the distances are estimated, I'll point out that #6 felt much longer than 180 feet, and #9 felt much shorter than 265. I'd say each is closer to 225 feet than the listed estimates on this site.
- Perhaps what is most intriguing about this course is the safari golf/'create your own hole' potential. The holes are spaced far apart, with lots of grassy areas throughout the quad. On a quiet day, you could easily turn this into a challenging and fun 9-hole layout.
- As is, the current layout will yield plenty of birdies. As long as you can control a mid-range disc, you'll be seeing birdie putts. During my round, I birdied or had birdie chances on seven of the nine holes. Only hitting a branch on #7 and having the distance on #8 underestimated (didn't have a disc to throw on this hole) kept me from having birdie chances on every hole.
- This is a good course for beginners and casual players. Once the college players master this course, they can head down 52 to Goose Landing and Fox Chase or head down 85 to Charlotte.
- The scenery did make this course more enjoyable than should be. There's something enjoyable and relaxing, and small town, about a small college campus. As great as the views of the classical buildings and the football stadium were, the coolest visual is the tall smoke stack. I haven't seen that on a college campus before.

Cons:

A couple simple cons about this place.
- It's not challenging, especially for better players. There is a lot of pitch-n-putt to this course. If you don't like playing short courses on small town college campus...not for you.
-There's a lot of walking and it's not the easiest course to navigate. The tee markers are small pavers (maybe 6x6) in the ground and aren't the easiest to find. Even with a printed map, I still had to walk around the general areas trying to find the markers. And with that walking, there is a lot of it between some holes. Hole #1 starts right next to the main road (Innes St) and you end near the back of the campus, near the football field. I ended up spending a lot more time walking, and searching for tee markers, than I did actually playing. For a short 9-hole course, it's not the quickest to play.
- Course may be hard to play during the school year. Between students, parking availability and possible privacy, I don't know how accessible this course is at all times.

Other Thoughts:

This is a simple course. If the exact same course was most to a less appealing locale, I'd probably have enjoyed this round a lot less. Having that long of a walk through a small county park would be a bigger negative in my book than having the same walk here. Or, if I played this course more often, the issues might be more obvious.
- That said, appearances and maintenance do matter. I enjoyed this course a lot more than 18-hole Ellis Park 10 minutes away. That course has so many problems, which you can read in my review for that course, but it's a far better course than this. Due to its failures at Ellis, even though I know that's a better course, I found myself enjoying the round at Catawba more. And yes, I chose to completely ignore Kelsey.
- Nothing at this course that you won't see at just about any other 9-holer. This is another one play if you want to add to your course counter. Or if you're really wanting to knock out the Salisbury trio of courses all at once.
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5 0
prerube
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Premium Member
Experience: 17 years 275 played 236 reviews
1.00 star(s)

with Kelsey with in walking distance, why bother? 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Aug 5, 2012 Played the course:once

Pros:

Brand New baskets.

Some interesting lines and attractive landscaping.

Great place to practice putting or for a weekend round if you live near by.

Cons:

Navigational and safety nightmare:
Tee markers are flat on the grown and hidden by the grass making them very hard to find. I never found 2 of them.
Flow is not very good. You must have the map to find the tee areas. Hole 3 you walk back to hole 1, after 7 you walk the length of the hole plus another 100 feet back past the tee to get to 8.
Throws over roads, walkways, at buildings and parking lots.
Hole 3's basket is between benches and a parking area, both only 20 feet away. 5 throws at parking lot and sidewalk, 6 throws across road at stadium, 7's tee is just 20 feet from basket 6, 9 is the are you F'ing serious hole, it throws over the walkway and stairs to Ketner Hall towards giant glass windows and doors.

Other Thoughts:

Colored bricks or something sticking up from the grass at the tee areas is 100% necessary. Safety is an issue, hopefully no one gets hit by a disc and gets the course closed down.
I agree with New013, 5 is the best hole and the layout jumps around. The only difference is I found tee 6, but I did not find tee's 1 and 3.
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13 0
New013
Diamond level trusted reviewer
Experience: 13.9 years 179 played 120 reviews
1.00 star(s)

First to review it 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Jun 3, 2012 Played the course:once

Pros:

Layout - The course is built right on a small congested campus, i'm talking right next to buildings, roads and sidewalks. So for a course that is weaving through all of it it's done pretty well.

There's actually two or three decent disc golf shots that will require you to hit a gap, get close and avoid pavement.

The greens were designed quite well for what they had to work with; several are right next to OB and one with a drop off behind it, which will force you to be accurate on your 200' shot.

I don't know if it was on purpose but there was a couple holes where on the tee you don't feel the wind because buildings are blocking it; then when your disc gets close to the hole it gets hit with a gust.. made me not birdie one hole.

It's a cool course to be right on campus in that space, not sure how it works out when there's people in the way. It's good for beginners or just killing some time between classes for the students there.

Equipment - The baskets are new.

Atmosphere - It's a beautiful small campus, very quaint. The grass is lush and the grounds are very well landscaped. I played this course on a Sunday during the summer. I literally only saw one other person on campus and he was playing tennis with himself. It was kind of weird in a ghost town sort of way but great because nobody was in my way.

Cons:

Layout - There's maybe two holes over 200'. It's a pitch and putt. It's not like they could of made it any grander. It literally is right through campus next to sidewalks, buildings and roads. Yeah I'm making that a pro and a con. Those boundaries create OB but also tons of danger. I'm not sure what the deal is when school is in session but even with short holes I could see some issues arising. Best to play on the weekend.

Over half of the holes have hardly anything in the way, just wide open short distances. I threw a hyzer on most of the holes.

The layout kind of jumps around a bit as it goes through campus, several times I had to kinda use intuition to find the next hole and then search for the teesign. I never found 6's tee so I made my own from the basketball court.

Equipment - No teepads but they're not needed and would just look ridiculous.. maybe it's a pro?

There are signs to mark where the tee is but they're black with dark red lettering sitting in lush grass and a bit hard to find just walking around, so bring a map... oh wait there isn't one.

Atmosphere - Again, I played with nobody on campus. It could be a pain to play this when there's people moving about but I have no idea how much traffic is on campus.

Other Thoughts:

It's a neat little addition to the college I'm sure. If I was a student there I'd enjoy it but there's not much reason to go out of your way to play there.

After throwing most of shots off the tee I went and found a much longer and harder shot and played it. That's definitely not possible unless the campus is dead, but when it is that was a lot of fun.

I gave the course a 1 just because it was fun and a nice campus to have it on. I'd like to be able to justify a higher rating but there's just not much to it and it's great for what it is. I'm sure if somebody shows up to play this with commotion about their rating will be lower.

Best Holes -

#5 - It's a short downhiller with some guardian trees, fun and great looking hole.

#7 - Probably the hardest shot you'll encounter, you'll actually need to be accurate to deuce.

I'm going to make a crude map using Google Earth to help the rest of you out.
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