11 Helpful / 1 Not
West Virginia Classic
The setting is idyllic - a large, sloping, V-shaped open space with two small ponds and a smattering of large trees scattered along and across the fields. Thicker woods on the edges define the property boundary, and the combination of the two provides the raw resources for a course that offers a blend of both openness and tightness, while mixing in elevation changes. Owner Gabi was quite friendly as she came out to meet us with a map, explain the current basket configuration, and forewarn us of potential navigation issues. Red arrows on some trees to aid in navigation. Two port-a-johns on site. Another 18=hole course at same location.
In mid-September, plenty of bugs - gnats in the open and mosquitoes in the woods. Natural tee locations are a bit short and rough, but within character for the course. Tee signs are well-battered, like a DX disc that has interacted with too many trees. At least thirty minutes from any sign of civilization, and about an hour from the nearest interstates (I70 and I81), so come prepared, because food/petrol/other options are NOT nearby.
A map is a necessity for a first-time/infrequent visitor, as holes 7, 10, and 13 all start near the same location, and a number of baskets are not easily visible from the tee. A few holes play across, and a few baskets are located near, deep gullies filled with dead leaves, so the chance of disc loss is high on some holes - spotters advised.
Approximately 1/3rd of the holes are primarily open and long, with obstacles (trees, pond) somewhat guarding the basket positions. The wooded holes require a variety of shots from the tee - left-, right, S-,a nd no-turners, and they are every bit as long as the open holes. Most holes are fairly flat or have minor elevation changes, but 7-12 play near some very steep slopes. Favourite hole: Number-11, a long, blind, right-turner across a leaf-filled ravine. Least favourite hole: Number-4, mucho trees to deal with early, only to find the basket within a prison cell! :-O
The length, pond, and tightness of most of the wooded holes makes this course inappropriate for beginners, low-level intermediates, and those who can't tolerate multiple challenging wooded holes. If you like your courses long, rough-n-tough, more wooded-than-open, and away from it all, certainly make the trip to play both courses at this location.
11 of 12 people found this review helpful.
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Whippin' Post is a tough, challenging, and fun course. This course has many of the same pros as The Woodshed as far as beautiful mountain scenery since they are right next to each other. The property owners are great people, the 5$ to play is worth it.
-long open shots and tightly wooded technical shots
-great use of land and elevation
-risk/reward including water hazard and challenging fairways
-arrows pointing to the next tee
-secluded and peaceful
There is onsite camping available is a huge bonus!
-5$ per person is a bargain
-soft grass for sleeping and walking barefoot
I star-gazed for a long time, the sky was brightly lit with so many stars, more than I ever remember seeing before. It was amazing and I must have seen half a dozen shooting stars.
Cons: The narrow road into the courses can be scary, especially driving in at night like I did. It is far away from most of civilization but it keeps it more secluded and you do get 2 first classes courses. Spend the night, it's just easier that way!
-beginners may get frustrated
-tee signs aren't very good (bring a map and you will be fine)
Other Thoughts: My two favorite holes were #9 and #18. 9 is an amazing shot across a large ravine. 18 is a downhill shot with a large, clean pond before the basket. I chose to lay up before the pond (my arm is not ready to go for it yet!) The greenery grows in alot thicker than the pictures let on. Bring all your food/drink/supplies because you are not going to want to run out for anything. The Paw Paw courses are worth the trek!
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
The more technical of the twin Paw Paws
Pros: - Lots of wooded shots. This course is the more technical of the two Paw Paw courses IMO. Like the Woodshed, many of them require a tight fairway driver and of course, several miracles!
- Immaculately manicured greens (I don't know how Spencer does it) and amazing scenery make for one of the most beautiful courses in the world!
- Great par 4's that really test your ability.
- Spencer and Gabby are amazing hosts, as usual. Take advantage of the area and camp over a night!
- Notable holes:
#1 is not so much notable for its length of difficulty, but rather for the amazing bamboo that guards you to the right. Very unique and scenic!
#6 is a super long drive (~800 feet) that leads to a well-guarded pin placement. The best test of arm strength.
#9 is my favorite hole on the course. It's a drive across a super steep ravine. You drive off a tee and watch it sail across the wide expanse. The challenge here is that you have to get it uphill to the basket. Phenomenal!
#18 is a great way to finish. Can you clear the pond? Better have a nice tailwind to help.
- Best of all, it's just fun! Don't let the challenge keep you from having a blast!
Cons: - Like most of central WV, this area is almost completely detached from civilization.
- Signage and tees need some improvement. Many of the signs are laying down on the ground and the tees could use some gravel.
- Compared to the Woodshed, the holes seem a little more repetitive. There's a reason hole #13 is called the Twilight Zone! Others feel the same way, too. Many of the holes on the front nine seem kind of bunched together a bit.
- You will hit wood many times. They will ricochet. You will curse. However, can you really expect NOT to given the tree placement?
Other Thoughts: - It's very hard reviewing these courses individually, as it naturally seems like more of a comparison to the other than a true review. Take my word (and the word of the other reviewers) and see all 36 holes for yourself!
- The Whippin' Post is definitely one of the top 5 courses I've ever played. On a very small margin, it has a little less variety than the Woodshed, but it's still one of the most beautiful, challenging, and serene locations in the DG universe.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: The Whipping Post is a great mix of open holes and nasty woods holes, with many true par 4s and tons of elevation changes. Overall, I feel that the Whipping Post is more balanced in terms of giving you a tremendous variety of different types of holes with very little repetition (there are a couple of holes on the Woodshed that inspire a touch of dejavu). There are big uphills, downhills, tight fairways, roller holes, huge dropoffs, shots over valleys, places for max-D bombs, places for touch shots, lots of fast greens, risk/reward challenges, beautiful vistas and everything else you could ask for.
Other Thoughts: The camping opportunities at PawPaw are awesome -- lots of barefoot grass and flat places to pitch a tent. A clean pond for swimming. Enclosed areas for fires are provided, and Spencer usually has firewood and ice he'll sell you at a reasonable price if you've forgotten to bring your own.
12 of 14 people found this review helpful.
19 Helpful / 0 Not
Almost as good as Woodshed on same site.
Much like it's sister course, The Woodshed, The Whippin' Post offers a lot of variety and demands a lot of different shot-making skills to score well. It has everything from 800'+ grip-n-rip holes to very technical wooded holes. It includes a lot of elevation changes and you do get a workout traversing the hills. There are a couple nice holes where you're throwing over a ravine. And the closer hole is a 402', somewhat downhill, shot over water. You have to carry about 385' of that to clear the pond... unless you skip your shot off of the dock that is. Check this out...
This is a pro level course that will punish bad shots. It's not for the weak hearted. And beginners beware, this course is long and has some very difficult, potentially frustrating, wooded holes. Be prepared to meet some trees.
The baskets are all in good shape. The tee boxes are large enough and most holes allow for a nice run-up area. There are signs for each hole and signs pointing to the next tees, although they're pretty run down at this point.
The mountains of WV are absolutely beautiful and this place is a prime example. Come and camp... stay a while. You'll have a great time. And Gabby & co. are always pleasant hosts.
Cons: Just like the Woodshed, the gravel (finely crushed) tees are ok when dry but can get rutty. And when wet they can be a muddy, slippery mess.
The signage, as I mentioned above, needs some work. It's just gotten old and is in need of some TLC.
The same thing that makes it so nice, being able to get away from it all, can also be a bother. The course is a long way from anywhere substantial.
Other Thoughts: I was going to list this as a con, but it's really more of a pet peave of mine. Holes #3 & #4 are both pretty nice holes. But they both play through dense woods and are 354' and 369' respectively. They're both considered par 3. I'm normally all about using the lowest par possible for holes. But I question whether the best pros would regularly make 3 on these holes. There is a subsantial element of chance involved which makes me think that they should be par 4. I could be totally wrong based upon how other people play the hole, thus this isn't a con.
There are a few great holes on this course that I absolutely love... #6 & #14 are two of them. I don't have a big enough arm, yet, to have a chance at birdies, but they're a ton of fun.
With both courses on the same site, the option to camp and great hosts, Paw Paw, WV should be a serious disc golf destination. If you're trying to get in 20 different courses on a two day marathon, then this probably won't work into your plans very well. However, if you just want to be able to sit back and relax after an awesome 36 holes, this is definitely the place for you. I highly recommend coming to play these courses to anyone who plays the game. It will be well worth your time.
There's a lot of property for sale nearby... hmmm.
19 of 19 people found this review helpful.
16 Helpful / 4 Not
The Other half of DG MECCA
Pros: Elevation, Water, woods, wind, huge variety, scenic, the hosts, the neighbors, the STARS :)
Together with the Woodshed, the two courses here at Paw Paw are really the ultimate test of your physical and mental DG skills. The Whippin Post has a couple of the all time classic DG holes anywhere.
The course's namesake is hole #2 - off the tee you throw through about an 18' wide gap about 40' in front of you and across a gulley to a landing zone about 20' round (it's about a 220-250' shot). If you hit that spot, you hang a left to an angle at about 9:30 and go another 350' through a very narrow alley and ever slightly uphill. Even when you hit a perfect drive - your second shot has to be absolutely perfect AGAIN to have a chance at 3. This hole has a HUGE scoring spread and can yield anything from a 3 to a 10.
Hole 7 (Cloe's Run) is a big boomin 800+ foot hole that can also be 3'd, but more often yields 5's, 6's & 7's as placemet is absolutley key to advancing across the big field. Hole 9 is another classic - crossing a huge ravine, and requiring 2 perfectly placed shots to card a 3.
It's hard to say enough about this course OR the Woodshed, as both have so many daunting, picturesque shots.
Cons: It's 100 miles from my house.
Other Thoughts: The brother of the original Paw Paw course (The Woodshed), the Whippin' Post was developed after Spence and Gabi acquired the adjacent property, and got access to an additional 30 or so acres in the mountains. This course plays a stroke or two easier than the WOODSHED, but has the ability to play 10 strokes harder. Accuracy is at a premium on this course, as is the requirement to get off the tee well, Hit an early obstacle, and your chances for big numbers go way up, as recovery efforts are significantly hindered by the extreme topography. Three are a few duece opportunities, but only a few, and they rarely offset the MANY oportunities for 4, 5 or more.
This is a must play for anyone who thinks they've seen a tough course. It's almost sad though - because after 36 holes at Paw Paw, everything else you'll ever see seems sort of well...........easy!
16 of 20 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 1 Not
Twin Sister is Just as Pretty and Mean
Pros: Like the Woodshed, the whipping post has many tight wooded holes and many open bobmbs that demand a precise landing to score well. Variety of holes that utilize elevation, water, trees, and length to extreme degrees. What I love is that it is built without short pin placements. So unlike other courses, every time you play here it's gonna be really challenging and you will always get the ultimate PAW PAW experience. I also enjoy the dramatic ravine holes of the whipping post. You can place a precise drive across the chute like fairway or you can hit a tree, wap wap, and end up losing both elevation and a clear path. Just plain mean but like a sucker I loved it. I imagine it's funny to see top players bitch and moan just like the rest of us. I agree with the mantra here. You can take a tree out easily but putting one in is tough. Keep your head and play smart and you will be rewarded. If you get cocky you will be humbled. I was conservative and humbled but I enjoyed the challenge anyway. Also the open holes of whipping post are dramatic with elevation and the infamous swimming hole hole to finish your day. I also am amazed that not many discs are lost here due to minimal heavy underbrush/shule. Hole 9 is the greatest Disc Golf hole I have ever played. Wow! It's like your expecting the ewoks to come running out at any minute. It's a huge drive over a deep gorge to the other side and then up to a protected pin. One of the few fair fairways on the course!
Cons: Not much to say here. The woods will beat up your discs and ego. You need to bring your own food, drink, and supplies. But to me that is all part of the adventure and fun. I scored just as poorly on thewooded hell holes as I did 5 yrs ago when I was a relative noob. This shows that luck is needed moreso than skill. If Spence would just swallow his pride and just thin out some of the trees, not an overall clearing just maybe thin it out a bit I would be able to in good conscience keep Paw Paw a 5 but I have to be honest as great as some of the holes are the abundance of trees in the fairway (not off the fairway) really spoil this place.
Other Thoughts: I find myself making Paw Paw miniatures out of my mashed potatoes. Some say I am obsessed with the place. I would just dare anyone who has not made the trip to take the time to experience it just once and see how they feel afterwards. In the meantime, pass the potatoes.
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
16 Helpful / 1 Not
More woods than the woodshed
Pros: Everything I mentioned in the Woodshed review about the place/scenery/camping/experience plus...
More great holes: my favorite is #18: throwing downhill 400' with 385' needed to carry water - with spectators often watching. The dramatic elevation differences on some of the holes where you're throwing over a ravine are also great - on #11 & #9 especially....on these holes if you hit an early tree you lose 100'+ in elevation, making the hole MUCH longer.
Great maintenance - there is actually grass growing on the wooded fairways & no undergrowth - I was amazed at the upkeep & great condition of the course
Cons: IMHO, fairway tree removal on some of the holes could vastly improve this course. #10 (where?) is the best example of this - you know what i'm talking about if you've played here.....it just seemed like many of the holes were throw & hope. A perfect throw might get clobbered by a tree and a terrible drive might sneak through unscathed...bring your luck with you. A few less trees and this is one of the best courses ever, period.
Other Thoughts: I prefer woodshed over the whipping post, but as noted in other reviews, its a matter of preference. Whipping post seemed to have more birdie opportunities for a smaller arm, but isn't necessarily easier or harder, just different.
Bring your A-game & forehand/backhand rollers to this course
16 of 17 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 1 Not
Paradise for Disc Golfers
Pros: PawPaw is a two-course disc golf paradise unlike anything I know of anywhere else in the nation (and I've played ~200 courses in 20+ states). It's my favorite place I know of to spend a disc golf weekend.
Both The Woodshed and The Whipping Post are awesome, but what is even better is having both courses side by side. And having a hill by the house and barn where you can sit, surrounded by WV mountains, looking down over some of the pivotal and most beautiful holes on both courses makes this an unparalleled place to both watch and play disc golf.
Spencer and Gabi are two of the most generous and welcoming people I know of, and it has been a labor of love on their part -- and on the part of many dedicated volunteers -- to make these courses what they are and to keep them maintained for play.
The Whipping Post has an SSA of roughly 63-64 strokes, and when you're playing competitively, pretty much every hole will change the lineup on your card. Every hole will exact a range of scores from almost any level of players, and that's one of the marks of a great course. No matter how many times you play it, you will always have opportunities you missed and places you know you could have played better. But every time through, different holes will take a bite out of you. Not because of luck, but because every hole is a challenge.
Like it's sister course The Woodshed, The Whipping Post is a great mix of open holes and nasty woods holes, with many true par 4s and tons of elevation changes. Overall, I feel that the Whipping Post is more balanced in terms of giving you a tremendous variety of different types of holes with very little repetition (there are a couple of holes on the Woodshed that inspire a touch of dejavu). There are big uphills, downhills, tight fairways, roller holes, huge dropoffs, shots over valleys, places for max-D bombs, places for touch shots, lots of fast greens, risk/reward challenges, beautiful vistas and everything else you could ask for.
One of the perks of both courses is that every hole has a name and every hole has a history. Play through with a local or someone who's been there since the beginning and they'll tell you more stories than your brain can hold.
The camping opportunities at PawPaw are awesome -- lots of barefoot grass and flat places to pitch a tent. A clean pond for swimming. Enclosed areas for fires are provided, and Spencer usually has firewood and ice he'll sell you at a reasonable price if you've forgotten to bring your own.
If you go out for a tournament weekend, expect a late night of live music in the barn and some of the most beautiful stars you'll see anywhere in the country. The Milky Way is blinding out there in those West Virginia mountains.
Cons: The only cons are that PawPaw is out of the way. But that's part of what makes is so wonderful -- the solitude and the true escape from urban/suburban life. So that's not really a con so much as it is the price you have to pay for solitude. Just make sure to bring everything you need with you for a weekend of camping, because you aren't going to want to leave and it's a bit of a drive even to the nearest convenience store.
The biggest con is having to leave the course after a weekend and return back to regular life. At a course like this, you wish you could stay forever.
Other Thoughts: Course fees are $5/person per day, but I encourage anyone who plays to chip in more than that if they can. One of the great things about PawPaw is that it has some of the most beautiful rolling hills imaginable -- all of which are mowed regularly by Spencer or a volunteer -- and mowing all those acres is an unforgiving task (and more and more expensive with gas prices going up). I encourage everyone to find some other place to save money when you're making a trip out to PawPaw and give what you can to support the course and the generous owners, Spencer and Gabi.
I also encourage people to take friends and family out to the course and just enjoy the weekend. Last fall, I was out there with my brother and sister. My brother plays; my sister doesn't. My brother and I had a great time playing, my sister hiked along some and spent most of the time just relaxing in a hammock under the trees, enjoying the beauty and solitude of the place. On tourney weekends, many folks bring wives/girlfriends/children and there are kids running around and extra adults kicking back, swimming in the pond, and just enjoying the views.
PawPaw is one of the best places I know of to camp -- even for friends who don't play disc golf -- so if you can get there for a weekend, DO. And if you can get in to the West Virginia Open tournament (it's Pro only, but I encourage Ams to play up), DO come play -- it will be the best weekend of disc golf you've ever spent. And if you can, do yourself a favor and take off Friday and Monday -- show up early and leave late and just enjoy paradise and the chance to play with some of the best golfers in the country in the most amazing setting imaginable. See you there.
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
13 Helpful / 4 Not
Private Disc Golf Heaven!
Pros: Every disc golf course designer should be so lucky as to have this piece of land to work with! The host and hostess are good people. This course will challenge the biggest arms and the top pros. # 18 is a long downhill throw across a pond with the basket just on the other side. Do you lay up? Do you go for it and risk going scuba diving? And the added pressure here when we played was???? About 10 players watching from lawn chairs imploring us to go for the gusto. Sadly, I must admit to total wimpiness. And one of the fews pars I earned that day.
Cons: Paw Paw is a million miles from nowhere. As a below average armed, recreational player, I was out of my league here. Long, long drives with sometimes very narrow fairways and scary roughs combined to send my score spiralling upward.
Other Thoughts: The Paw Paw experience is a must for the serious disc golfer, especially one with a big ole arm. The similarities to the Circle Ranch courses in Wimberly, Texas are amazing. Both are privately owned disc golf meccas. Both feature two monsterous 18 hole courses. Both have amazingly wonderful hosts. Both will bring you crashing to your knees. Both must be experienced! I'd rate the Paw Paw courses as more difficult of the two.
13 of 17 people found this review helpful.
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