4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: My first experience with IUP College Lodge was a tournament round in 2016. I was playing the course blind, and as I pulled into the parking lot at 8 o clock AM, I knew the course was something special.
Walking up to the tournament headquarters (a building next to hole 10) I saw a large open valley with rolling ski hills pouring grass into the center. With the sun rising up over the hills providing a beautiful landscape, only one could dream of such a wonderful scene.
Golf wise, the course does not disappoint. It has a mixture of uphill shots and downhill shots, shots that go right and shots that go left, shots through trees and shots in the open fields. Hole 18 is one of the best holes I have ever played. You are throwing downhill, hopefully a crush that will give you a clean upshot towards the basket, with dangers of OB.
Every time that I have played the course it has been in immaculate shape. Mowed fairways, well kept rough, among other things.
Almost every hole is great. Most courses that I personally enjoy have all good holes, but nothing that makes you want to take a picture of it every time you play. However, IUP has those holes.
Cons: Every course has faults. Often on great courses such as IUP, these faults are not that major.
First, the baskets are somewhat outdated. I know, I know, Mach IIIs are fine baskets. However, I feel when you have a course as well designed as IUP, you could have more updated and colorful baskets that would be more visible and catch better than the current baskets.
Second, the teepads and tee signs could be updated. The tee signs do not give enough information as to what I would prefer. Updated tee signs are a huge plus on these types of courses. The white tees are rubber and the blue tees are natural. They are well kept, but concrete tees could go a long way. During a rainy week, the tees will be slippery and with testy footing.
Next, the course is missing hazards that aren't the road. There is a nice pond by hole one, but it does not come in to play. There could easily be an added challenge somewhere on the course that would make it even more special than it already is.
Finally, there are some holes that are subpar. For example one hole on the back nine does not have a true line to the basket. Basically, you throw and pray that you don't hit one of the many trees in the middle of the fairway. Hole 10, is also the same way. Not much of a visible line. I am a huge fan of woods golf, but this seems too extreme.
Other Thoughts: I love the course at IUP. IT has a great atmosphere, and some great holes. With a few tweaks, it could definitely be one of the best in the state of Pennsylvania. It is a hidden gem an hour and a half outside of Pittsburgh, but it is well worth the drive!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is overall an amazing course. An old ski hill provides a ton of elevation, the course moves and flows in and out of woods and along what I assume is an exercise trail (though when I was out at 8am in the summer, I was alone).
Specifics things to praise this course for:
- Nice baskets that catch well
- Two tees on every hole
- Multiple pin placements (though only playing it once I can't speak to how good the other pins are...)
- This is the first course I have played that has a legitimate rough. On most holes, there is a beautiful fairway, and if we get off, you are in trees. Unlike many courses I play with trees filled with thorny undergrowth, there is another stretch of trees with no undergrowth. Makes finding discs a snap. If you really have a bad throw (which I had a couple) you will get into some deep undergrowth, but the stuff I trudged through weren't thorns or ivy so I will take that every day of the week.
- Benches on almost every hole
- Even with the steep inclines, this course is pretty easy to get around with well maintained paths and a couple spots with stairs to help for those a little more limited mobility wise. Saying that, I should also note that even with nice paths and such, the course is still a pretty good hike, so take advantages of the benches when you need to!
- A lot of parking, as there are a number of amenities at the Lodge.
- I forgot to mention the maintenance here at the Lodge is amazing! I went before the grounds crew was out, and I thought the fairways were pretty well kept, but by the time I finished up my round, they were cutting them. Definitely no overgrowth on this course, which is a welcome sight to say the least!
Cons: - The biggest, and really, my only complaint is the navigation of the course. The tee signs were only on the White tees (that I noticed) and they were relatively small, and took me about half the course to realize there were directions to the next tee on them. There were also SMALL signs along the main path with indications of where the next tee was, the problem with that, was I was often not on the main path, and the signs weren't always near the basket so I missed quite a few. Mostly, the path leads you where you need to go, but there are definitely a handful of holes that left me scratching my head.
Other Thoughts: The only thing I should add is, when you are leaving, if you are walking on the road, be aware that the road drops off about 2 inches to the shoulder, which isn't a big deal if you are paying attention, however, if you are walking off of 18 catching up your Udisc from the previous two holes and you don't watch where you are going... you can easily twist your ankle.
Moral of the story, score first, THEN walk to the car lol
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Very fun course to play. I played all 18 holes and didn't see one piece of garbage anywhere on the course. Plays through the woods and some open shots too. Paths are lined with logs. Very well maintained! Worth the drive :)
Cons: The only thing I can think of is the paths that take you throughout the course are used by runners and bicycles alike. It is an exercise trail with exercise stations also. Not really a con but make sure to look out for other people before your next throw.
Other Thoughts: One of my favorite courses to play. Shout out to the grounds crew! Keep up the good work :)
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is one of the most well maintained courses I have personally ever played. The course itself and the nature trails around the park are pretty well flawless when it comes to trash and excess debris. The course offers everything from beginner skill level shots to holes that are going to favor the more advanced and experienced players. Lots of elevation change from hole to hole not only offers a great challenge and variety to the course, but you get a good workout while playing also!
Cons: Although the white tee's are topped with rubber fly mats, the blue tee's are natural and some of them are in rough shape. Be careful!
Other Thoughts: With the upcoming 2015 Indiana Open, the course has had some serious fairway maintenance and some new features. The steps from hole 2 to 3 have been completely reconstructed not only making it safer for players but a lot easier on the back getting up the hill! Fairways have been cleaned of great amounts of debris making it easier to find your disc if you get a little off the beaten path, and easier to navigate from hole to hole.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: There is a ton of awesome elevation changes. There are a bunch of holes where you can let it rip. There are also a fwe very technical holes. So this course basically pleases anyone. The baskets are great so is the signage. The fairways will rival some golf courses.
Cons: The tee pads are a bit skeptical because they are wood chips. Other than that there really are not any cons.
Other Thoughts: This is a great course I highly recommend it to anyone who likes the sport. I would drive an hour and hit this one plus Getty Heights and pine ridge. It makes for a great full day of disc golfing.
2 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: The massive elevation changes and variety of holes make this course a must-play for any disc golfer in the area. Good signs and the most carwfully cared for fairways I haveever seen on a disc golf course.
Cons: No major cons to speak of. Wood chip tees make for uneven footing at times. A couple of holes share a common open field, so on a busy day things could get crazy.
Other Thoughts: Plenty of holes for big armed veterans to enjoy, but also chances for new players to not get left behind. Anybody could play here and have a good time.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
(IUP) Insane University Posse
Pros: Beautiful ski hill course with 18 baskets with dual pins and dual natural tees marked with sign/post and wooden block in ground. Excellent use of elevation and terrain. The grounds are extremely well kept like a ball golf course and not much underbrush in the rough so it's fairly hard to lose a disc here. Two loops of 9 holes back to the parking lot. Two portapotties and a soda machine by the parking lot.
Cons: Not much to complain about here. If it was crowded I'd probably keep my head on swivel on the slope to watch for errant flying discs. I'm ok with the natural tees and they were fine, I know that is a con in some people's book. lacks signage for current pin placement. Navigation wasn't too bad, but a few extra signs to the next tee would be great.
Note to get to hole 13 tee walk over the tee of hole 17. After hole 14, the tee to 15 is the woods to the right.
Other Thoughts: This course titers between a 3.5 and 4.0 for me but the last shot bumped it up. Hole 18 is quite epic down the ski hill 800'+. I also really enjoyed hole 14 downhill through the woods. I think most the baskets were in the short pins, and can see how the B pins make it play really sweet. I guess they keep the pins short as it is more of a beginner course due to its location on a college campus. Part of the beauty of this course is that you can take a rank beginners here and they would not be overwhelmed and more experienced veterans will still have a blast here.
I'd highly recommend a stop if traveling anywhere close by in season. I detoured my trip to Pittsburgh from Baltimore to play and it was well worth it!
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: An extremely well-designed course that makes superb use of the space. College Lodge will push seasoned players to consistently make a wide variety of shots in order to post a good score. At the same time, the course is welcoming to less experienced players, affording playable tees and holes that aren't out of reach.
The scenery is top notch as well. The course is almost worth a trip through even without tossing a disc!
#18 is probably the best final hole I've ever played on a course. A long downhill shot, it's a fun and beautiful way to conclude a round!
You'll also never have to wait to play here. Even during the school year, IUP students don't seem to take an interest in the course, so it's free and clear at almost any time.
Cons: There's a couple blind shots, particularly on #9, so it might take a round or two to get properly acquainted with the course.
Some holes might be considered too simple for higher-level players, but there's still a solid challenge for most of us.
It's also in the middle of nowhere. If you're looking for a weekend trip, don't spend the night around Indiana. There's also not going to be many players to bump into at any given time, which takes away a social aspect of the game that I find appealing at other courses.
Other Thoughts: College Lodge is a great course with plenty of appeal for a wide variety of players. The major drawback, at least for me, is its location. If you're coming to play this course, make sure you check out other courses nearby, such as Moraine and Deer Lakes. They're much closer to civilization, and of slightly higher quality.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: IUP college lodge is such a beautiful course. Disc golf doesn't seem to be very popular among the students at Indiana U of Penn which equates to thick, beautifully manicured grasses with almost no trash around the course.
All different varieties of shots needed: long arrow shots, dog legs, uphill, DOWNHILL, etc. There aren't more than two holes on this course that i would consider "weak". If it is your first time playing this course, make sure you do your best to stay under par during the easier front nine. The back nine will eat you alive. Holes 14 (down a gently curving path) and 15 ( 180 foot alley of pines) can really add a few strokes to your round if you loose concentration. Of course 18 is my favorite. Its very hard to resist emptying your bag when you approach this monster.
Cons: Limited trash cans around the facility
Park closes at dusk
Natural tee pads
Other Thoughts: IUP college lodge is a very beautiful course in the mountains of Western PA. For stunning views of fall foliage, try to schedule a round in early October.
This course could honestly be a 4.5 if the tee pad situation was taken care of. Just like most courses, I am sure that these will be upgraded when some money comes around.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
One of Central PA's finest DG Courses!
Pros: Variety is what makes this course very special. With the exception of some of the holes on the ski hill, no two holes are exactly the same. There are hyzer shots, anyhyzer shots, downhills, uphills, blind shots, tight wooded fairways, a 700+ft downhill drive, and many others.
This course is clearly maintained well. Signage, parking, the absence of litter, trails, and super manicured greens are evidence of this! (Seriously, though: how do they keep the grass so nice?) In addition, the course is easy to navigate and I had no problem getting around the first time or subsequent times.
Another plus is that the course is in the college town of Indiana. Plenty of establishments and lodging is available.
Some notable holes include:
#2 = a wooded fairway that runs along a very shallow stream, which makes the hole very cool and relaxing.
#9 = blind shot down the ski hill; easy birdie opportunity if you drive correctly.
#14 = Requires a very straight driver or a slight anhyzer if you want to par. Hyzer and you'll see your disk go off a very steep bank!
#15 = very tight fairway passage through a bunch of pine trees. In addition to being a tight drive, the putt/approach requires concentration because the basket is on a slight hill. Definitely a risk/reward shot.
#18 = The last hole may not necessarily be the best, but it's definitely memorable. The slope of the hill allows the discs to go forever! This is a chance to see just how powerful your drives are!
Cons: There's a fairly decent sized pond when you first arrive in the park. I wish this was used as a water hazard, but with the rich biodiversity in the body of water (frogs, toads, fish, etc.), I understand why they may not have used the pond as such.
The fact that this course is closed during the winter months is also a bummer.
I can perhaps see the ski hill being a challenge for people who aren't in the best shape. Even I, a distance runner, puffed a little bit going up some of the holes.
Concrete tees would also improve the rating on this course.
Other Thoughts: IUP students and local residents are really lucky to have this course. It's unequivocally, in my opinion, the crown jewel of DG courses in Central PA. It's just one of those courses that you know is going to be good when you start and it exceeds your expectations when you finish.
I've been here four times now and I've seen very few people playing here. I'm not sure whether this is the case all the time, but more people should definitely check it out!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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