Gaithersburg, MD 
Seneca Creek State Park Share
Uploaded By: crandellfamily Hole #12 (Taken 6/2010)
3 / 415ft.   3 / 423ft. Par / Distance:
Hole #12 Basket

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I wish I knew how lucky I was when I lived nearby

5+    10/3/2018   7/25/2022
Review By: Obbica
Played: 6  Reviewed: 6
3 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: *Well maintained
*Great variety of hole styles and challenges
*Marked well
*Each 9 brings you back to the parking lot
*Great tee boxes and tee markers
*Some permanent staircases
Cons: *Some holes may not be cart friendly
*Some times you have to pay
Other Thoughts: I haven't played here in a few years. This was our first real disc golf course. We lived close by and it was amazing. I think we took for granted how well maintained and well designed this place is. I would play it if I make it back to the dc area for sure. I have extreme bias towards this place; I proposed to my wife on this course.

3 of 8 people found this review helpful.

 My favorite course

5+    7/1/2022   7/2/2022
Review By: casmith175
Played: 19  Reviewed: 1
This review was updated on 1/6/2023
2 Helpful / 7 Not
Pros: A really well-maintained course with 27 holes. My home course, and I couldn't be happier. Thank you Mr. Bill!

-Layouts for holes 1-9, 10-18, and 19-27 all start an end at the parking lot
-Multiple tee-pads for each hole. Some holes have 2 baskets
-This course has a huge variety of required shots, making it great for learning. Backhand, forehand, rollers, tomahawks, thumbers etc can all be useful tools.
-Disc return box is run by the park. They'll call you if your disc is returned and has a phone number on it
-Excellent (and somewhat vintage) signs
-Basket locations are changed often, adding to course variety. Check the bead on the sign for the current location.
-Course is very well-maintained
-Cool squirrel lives on hole 2. Black with white tip tail, his name is Captain Jack
-The local community is very friendly. Be on the lookout for Wednesday doubles during the Summer! You do not need to know anybody, just come on out

Cons: -Tee-pads can get slick when wet. Especially whites (longer layout). Note: The local club is working on fixes.
-Somewhat limited park hours during the off-season, if you like to play early rounds. Generally 10am to 5 pm.
-The holes by the creek can get muddy (5, 13, 14)
Other Thoughts: -Park entrance on weekends and holidays is 3$ per Maryland resident and 5$ for out of state. Week days are free.
-The middle nine (10-18) has the most walking distance of all three.

2 of 9 people found this review helpful.

Of Sleek Seneca Creek I Speak

1    8/11/2021   4/10/2022
Review By: Ryal
Played: 176  Reviewed: 155  Exp: 6 Years
15 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: + The welcome area has a big course map, cardstock scorecards & plastic trash bags for the taking, a lost disc box and a practice basket.
+ There are benches everywhere.
+/- There are 'next' signs, but the player has to actively look for them because they are nailed onto trees in dark colors.
+ Sturdy and complete tee signs with "hook and bead" system for the single basket's current location, but...
Cons: - ...Many of the hooks and/or beads are damaged or outright missing. For some, they may as well not exist for how reliable they are.
-/+ The tee pads are an inconsistent mix of flat poured concrete, laid brick or uneven concrete pavers, but at least all 27holes have them.
- The distances listed on the scorecards, tee signs, and Udisc all disagreed with each other.
Other Thoughts: I thought holes3 and 4 were the nicest to look at. I played here in the middle of summer. During that time, the lush foliage, peaceful nearby stream, shadowy forest and gentle terrain of those two fairways combine to create a scene almost worthy of a fairy tale. My least favorite was hole7 because of how plainly it played. Hole26 was my favorite to play here because of its changing elevation and varying obstacles.

As for the course as a whole, Seneca Creek can be described like that: varying. I think that more people would classify this course as being wooded than open, but it doesn't neatly fit that descriptor. With 27 holes to work with instead of the traditional 18, there is much more to consider when thinking about this course. Realistically, the experience balances out to more of a park-style course rather than what most people would call wooded or forested. Make no mistake, there are certainly heavily wooded holes to be had here. Holes15 and 16 stand out as almost claustrophically good examples, but those kinds of fairways are in the minority. Still, Seneca will certainly scratch your itch if you prefer wooded disc golf.

Players who like to grip and rip won't find this place too attractive. While there aren't trees everywhere, they are common enough to put a damper on the most energetic throwers unless they're feeling extra daring and gutsy. Just watch your footing on some of those pads during run-ups. More than a few of them seem like they were hastily assembled and plopped into the ground with no real care. And you may have to do some guesswork regarding which basket you're throwing towards. The 'current basket' system ought to be fortified. Also, bring along your good sense of direction because navigating the course isn't necessarily intuitive in between holes. I was lucky to meet up with a local regular, Rick, who guided me along holes10 through 27.

Speaking of which, I don't have much experience with 27-hole courses. This is only the second one I've played. Functionally, there really is no difference regardless of the number of holes. But from an evaluative standpoint, it feels weird. Since there is 50% more disc golfing here than at most courses, it runs the risk of feeling drawn out or repetitive even if there is more disc golf to enjoy. Still, whether or not it does start to wear out its welcome, Seneca Creek offers disc golfers a fun layout and plenty of options to pick from. There are multiple tee locations and various pin possibilities. Tournaments here must be pretty tricky.

All said, Seneca earns a strong recommendation from me. The land is well utilized and takes golfers on a nice tour of what Maryland disc golf can offer. It can be frustrating to be unsure about where you're throwing and which way to walk, but patience will see you through. Be sure to wear sturdy sneakers, and stay hydrated.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful.

1    11/26/2021   12/1/2021
Review By: eakadima15
Played: 27  Reviewed: 17
This review was updated on 12/2/2021
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: So many challenging and technical lines

Gorgeous views

Good mix of elevation changes

The locals are very friendly

Plenty of different tee positions

Great roller lines

You will be challenged to throw all of the different shots you have in your game

Each set of 9 holes ends near the parking lot, making it easy to take breaks

While there are some tough wooded shots that demand tight lines, there are also a good number of open holes where you can really let it rip

Nice tee signs
Cons: You NEED a spotter. If this is your first time playing, I recommend reaching out to the Seneca Creek DG Facebook group and ask someone to show you the ropes. They will likely be happy to help you!

The wind can be rough

The Parks Department responsible for this course sucks. This course needs better signage to show where the next holes are, and the locals are willing to put in the work to help as a labor of love. The government hacks are putting in way too many restrictions that prevent locals from making the simple changes that would make this course so much easier to navigate.

Be careful, there are sharp bushes that can draw blood
Other Thoughts: This is a really great wooded course. It has the potential to be world class, but its unfortunate that the parks department stands as an obstacle to this course reaching its full potential. Still, if you are in the Maryland/DC area, this is a must-play course!

10 of 10 people found this review helpful.

5+    10/20/2021   10/25/2021
Review By: JarnSarge
Played: 3  Reviewed: 2  Exp: 14 Years
6 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: 27 holes
tee signs
open shots
wooded shots
Cons: tee pads some are un even pavers
Some Fairways are close to other holes
Baskets are old and need updated
Navigation is a little tough
Other Thoughts: 27 holes has a lot of history and has its fun shots but out of the 27 holes most are repetitive, some wooded holes are hard to see from the tee pad but that just adds to the challenge, course could use some updating

6 of 11 people found this review helpful.

Classic east coast woods course

5+    9/24/2021   9/29/2021
Review By: Monocacy
Played: 354  Reviewed: 56  Exp: 23 Years
23 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Seneca Creek is one of the classic east coast woods courses, set in a (mostly) disc golf-exclusive part of the state park. Located in the Maryland Piedmont, the course features rolling hills and stream valleys. Tree cover ranges from mature deciduous forest down by the creek to newer growth with deciduous trees and junipers closer to the parking lot. Some of the creek holes with their soaring canopies feel like wooded disc golf cathedrals (at least until your disc hits a tree and kicks into the rough, but that's on you - the lines here are fair). The park is particularly gorgeous in the spring when native dogwoods and redbuds are blooming, and again in the fall when maple and tulip poplar leaves glow in the evening sun.

Some holes are fairly open and some are tighter, but make no mistake - you are mostly playing in the woods, with a handful of park-style holes. Nice variety of holes that favor left-turning, right-turning, and straight shots, plus uphill, downhill, side-hill, and valley hole designs. Playing well at Seneca Creek requires you to shape the entire flight of the disc, not just hit a gap. This is a higher-level challenge, and one of the reasons I love playing here. Success must be earned, and the course keeps you honest.

Seneca Creek has three 9-hole loops, each conveniently starting and ending near the parking lot. There are also a few bonus 2-hole or 3-hole loops that bring you back to the parking lot: holes 1 and 2; holes 10, 11, and 27 (or 10, 11 and 9); and holes 19, 20, 17, and 18 (or 19 and 18).

Many holes have a huge variation in distance and difficulty depending on which tee and basket you play. For example, hole 10 can range from 242' (short tee, A pin) to 562' (long tee, C pin), and the D pin is even longer (and more fun). In contrast, sometimes the long and short tees are similar distances but play at different angles to the fairway. Several holes offer the choice of two fairways, and some of the long tees require you to navigate a tunnel just to reach the main fairway. At least two paved tees on every hole, plus recreational tees marked by yellow-painted blocks. Even though the rec tees are short, birdies are not always easy.

Excellent tee signs include a detailed hole map, distances from each tee to every basket, and a hook with a colored bead that shows basket position(s). The colored beads are very helpful because many of the longer pin positions are blind from the tee. The club rotates basket positions regularly, which enhances replay value. Usually the course is set up with a balanced mix of A, B, and C pin positions.

Second baskets have been installed in the long (C or D) position on several holes. These long pin positions are highlights of the course and significantly enhance the challenge and joy of playing here. As of fall 2021, long baskets have been set up on holes 1, 5, 13, 18, 23, and 27.

Remarkably low risk of disc loss for a wooded course. The club does an amazing job of clearing underbrush near the fairway (thanks Mr. Bill!). There is a lost disc drop box at the kiosk, and lost discs with identification can be retrieved at the ranger's station near the park entrance.

Practice basket near the parking lot, and the permanent long pin for hole 18 serves as a second practice basket (just make sure no one is playing the hole). Also near the parking lot you will find a kiosk with a detailed course map, and picnic tables suitable for hanging out after the round. Abundant benches have been installed throughout the course. Port-a-pot near the parking lot in summer, and indoor bathrooms are available elsewhere in the park.

Bright yellow flags make the Mach 3 baskets easier to spot in the woods. Flags are usually swapped out each spring, so they might get a little worse for wear by late winter. Red-banded baskets have been installed as permanent long pins on a few holes, but the older baskets are solidly mounted, level, and catch well.

Too many memorable holes to list, but here are a few favorites:

Hole 13 is the signature hole on the course, with a fairly generous fairway lined with OB creek left and mature deciduous forest right. The slightly downhill drive is about 280' from the short tee with a tricky landing zone. The hole then doglegs right, still following the creek, and the permanent D pin is another full drive from the landing zone. The long tee adds 90 feet to reach the dogleg.

Hole 6 is a dead-straight, high-ceiling tunnel, with distances ranging from 278' to 405' from the short tee. The long basket requires an accurate drive and tricky approach through scattered trees. Gorgeous and intimidating.

Hole 22 is steeply downhill, low ceiling drive with distances ranging from 296' to around 500'. Lots of ways to attack the hole: roller, backhand turnover, or sidearm can all work. Hitting the line just right is never easy but always satisfying, and scramble opportunities are usually available if your drive gets knocked down early.
Cons: Have a course map available the first time you play here because navigation can be confusing where the 9-hole loops cross over each other. Loops cross between holes 5 and 6, holes 7 and 8, holes 12 and 13, and holes 24 and 25.

Some of the older concrete tee pads are a bit narrow, but most pads are level with the ground so this is not a big problem. Some of the paver tee pads in the woods are getting a bit uneven. Uneven turf pads on a few bonus extra-long tees in the woods.

A combined sewer system (storm water and sewage) follows the creek. This is common in older sewer systems, but after a heavy rain the olfactory experience may not match the visual beauty of the creek holes. Bring a towel and don't lick your discs after they go OB in the creek!

There is a dog waste station near the parking lot but otherwise no trash cans. Maryland state parks have a pack-it-in, pack-it-out policy so plan accordingly.

Once each summer baskets are moved to the A (short) position for a children's disc golf event.
Other Thoughts: I never get tired of playing here, even though I have probably played Seneca Creek more than any other disc golf course. Heck, I might have played Seneca as often as all other courses combined. But with 27 challenging holes, multiple tees on every hole, ever-changing basket locations, multiple baskets on many holes, and multiple ways to attack most of the holes, this course never gets old for me.

Some feel that Seneca is a "lefty" course. Often this means that the course is well balanced between right-turning and left-turning holes, and such is the case here. In fact, some of the right-turning holes set up better for a RHBH turnover rather than a righty sidearm. It is true that the five creek holes all have OB on the left side, but on most of those holes you have righty-friendly options.

Seneca Creek started as an 18-hole course with lots of low-ceiling holes that favored rollers. Since the redesign to 27 holes, rollers are no longer required (but still useful on a few holes). If you run into any Seneca long-timers they probably have a solid roller game.

There are official hole pars for tournaments, but for casual play everything at Seneca Creek is "par 3". Yes, even those 560' dogleg holes. Deal with it.

When you play the five creek holes, note that the yellow OB rope usually follows the tree line, well away from the creek. If your drive skips left past the tree line, you will generally be out of bounds.

Seneca Creek State Park comprises 6,300 acres with a 90-acre lake. Park activities include more than 50 miles of hiking and mountain bike trails, playgrounds, volleyball, boat rentals, fishing, hunting, historic sites, a winter light show, and a beautiful peony display garden. The park is an oasis in the DC suburbs, hosting abundant wildlife such as foxes, hawks, owls, snakes, chipmunks, and of course deer.

Nominal fee to enter the park on summer weekends.

Fun fact: Most of the 1999 horror film 'The Blair Witch Project' was filmed in Seneca Creek State Park (but not at the disc golf course).

23 of 23 people found this review helpful.

Scrappy Seneca Golfin'

2-4    8/14/2021   8/15/2021
Review By: epritt
Played: 7  Reviewed: 5  Exp: 2.2 Years
17 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: First of all, this is a beautiful state park. The course has its own dedicated area on the far side of the park that makes it feel like a disc golf oasis.

-27 holes. It's in every review, but this is the only 27 hole course within an hour's drive of where I live, so it's the only one I've played so far. The 27 holes are split into 3 loops of 9 that all begin and end by the parking lot, making it easy to play any combination of 9 holes you chose. I like to come on a weekend where I have time to play all 27, and have only played them in order, but you could play any 9, any 18, any tee, and have a new experience every time you play.

-Fairway combos. There's a great combination of highly wooded and more open shots. Trees are in play on every hole, but about half feature trees lining the fairway while half feature trees in the fairway. There are obvious lines on every hole, and I'm sure there are some fun local routes I haven't discovered yet (not on purpose, at least).

-The rough. As opposed to some courses that have extremely dense, punishing rough, most of the rough at Seneca is very much playable. I have yet to find myself in a position in the rough where I couldn't scramble and advance up the fairway. It's punishing, but a good scramble game will save many pars. I love finding creative ways to scramble, and Seneca allows you to do that without being overly punished. The rough is also not so dense that you'll lose many discs. I've hit the rough many times and not really been close to losing a disc.

-OB is well marked. There are strings lining OB throughout the course, which is a nice addition. I feel like a lot of courses only really line OB during tournament play, but the OB lines at Seneca are clearly and permanently marked, making it super easy to check your lie.

-Signage. There is a course map at the parking lot, and every hole has a very accurate sign showing all tee pads and potential basket locations. The hole signs also have a bead marking the current location of each pin. Even when you can't see the pin from the tee, the sings are accurate enough to pick your shot appropriately.

-Multiple pin locations and tee pads. Every hole has at least 2 tee pads (some 3) and 3 pin locations (some 4). I played 2 weeks in a row and some of the pin locations changed, so there's constant evolution to the course and every round will be a little different than the one before, which I enjoy.

-A nice hike. This may be a con for some, to be honest, but I enjoy the hike. The course is LONG. Playing short tees for all 27 holes takes me about 3 hours and results in a roughly 5 mile hike. There's lots of elevation change, but I love the hike. It makes the round fun, too. The last 9 holes are even harder when you're exhausted! There are benches at, I think, every tee pad. So even though it's long, there are many places to rest.

-Pro shop? Signs indicate that Innova discs are available for purchase in the park office. I haven't followed up on that, but assuming the signs are accurate, discs can be purchased on site.
Cons: -Tee pads. The tee pads are mostly made of roughly 15"x15" concrete blocks. This means that over time and due to erosion, the tee pads can lack consistency and a lot of them are uneven. Since the long tee pads are used less frequently, a lot of them are overgrown, I've noticed. there are also some solid concrete tees and at least one is gravel. Just be prepared to throw from several different surfaces and types of tee pads.

- Layout. Now that I've played a couple times, I understand the layout a little better, but it was very confusing at times as a first-time player. Some signs show where the next holes are, but not every hole has that, so I got turned around and caught guessing a few times. There's also one point where you have to cross the middle of a fairway to get from one hole to another, which is not ideal. Just keep an eye out and don't be afraid to ask for help if you can't find a tee location!

-Bathrooms. There is one porta potty at the course. The park has bathrooms elsewhere, namely right before the main gate. I'd recommend stopping to go to the bathroom before you enter the park.

-Parking. Both times I've played Seneca, there was parking available in the lot. However, the lot isn't huge, and I can definitely see a situation where the course is busy and you have to park in overflow parking, which is available, but requires a bit of a walk to get to the course.

-Baskets. This may be a little nitpicky, but once I get up to the 4-5 star courses, I think that's necessary. The baskets are pretty old, and some are a little rusty. There are maybe 2-3 Chainstar baskets (I'm pretty sure they're chainstar but I could be misremembering), but for the most part the baskets are very basic and can result in some spit-outs that higher-end baskets would catch.

-Pars. Playing the short tee pads, I think this course being all par 3 is fairly reasonable. If long tees are all par 3s, I think that is a touch too difficult. I'd like to see some par 4s on a course with so many holes and so much space to play, just to add a little more variety to the round.
Other Thoughts: The state park is worth visiting on its own merit. Lots of trails, a beautiful lake, picnic areas, boat rentals, playgrounds, and more. You could easily make an entire day out of coming to Seneca to play a round, pack a picnic, spend some time on the water, etc. The course is one of the best in the area. Remember to bring $3/person if you're a MD resident and $6/person if you're an out of state visitor (unless you have a state park pass). You will leave Seneca ready to come back and play again!

17 of 17 people found this review helpful.

 Wooded Par-3 Monster

2-4    9/6/2020   9/8/2020
Review By: gtg888h
Played: 40  Reviewed: 27  Exp: 17 Years
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: +27 holes of beautiful, varying, and challenging disc golf. Combination of true-wooded holes and meadows with imposing trees set on rolling hills, with a creek and significant OB coming into play on five holes. Each of the three 9-hole loops goes through each of the different settings on the property, so you get the full gamut of challenges even if you only play nine holes.

+Even with 27 holes (27!), there's not a junky hole in the bunch. All of them really offer challenges - tight gaps to hit, big elevation changes, low ceilings, specific's got them all. There might not be a *true* signature hole (#13 and #23 are close in my mind), but all of them are worth playing.

+Setting is a disc golf-only section of the state park. You'll get the occasional hiker coming through, but you won't have any of the issues of throngs of non-DG players coming through or picnickers in the fairways, even on busy weekends. Also, for having 27 holes, they've done an amazing job of ensuring that the safety hazards are low - barring some epic shank jobs, you don't have to worry to much about flying discs from other holes.

+Course map at the parking lot provides tons of information - definitely take a picture of it your first time playing (or find the map via Google image search) so you don't get lost between holes. While I consider it a strength that each of the 9-hole loops go through all of the ecosystems of the property, it means that those loops do cross each other between holes, so it could get confusing.

+Tee signs at every hole (generally at red tees or between red and white) provide all the info you need. All holes have two tee pads plus a third set of yellow novice stone markers. Nine of the holes have additional blue "professional" tee pads, but they aren't consistent and have them sprinkled through the three loops. One pin per hole with 3-4 positions that rotate.

+Each of the loops start and end at the parking lot, which is great for restocking on water and food or just taking a break. It's hilly and a bit of a workout!

+Set within a great state park, which has wonderful hiking, boating, fishing, and playground opportunities to make a day of it.
Cons: -Tee pads are definitely showing their age and vary in size/quality/composition by hole. However, after playing 54 holes here across three visits...they honestly didn't affect me all that much (i.e. not a safety hazard in my mind). But definitely not in a condition to be called a "plus".
Other Thoughts: Free during the week, and $3/adult ($5 out of state) on weekends April-Oct; very reasonable.

Doubles on Wednesday evenings during late spring/summer/early fall. Starts @ 5 PM I believe.

Some of the pin positions in the longest setting are absolutely par-4 in length - simply not reachable, even from red tees, by anyone but a pro with a perfect shot. I'm never going to make the pars on a course a pro or a con - they are what they are - but I think there's a way to say "A/B/C pin positions are par-3, D is par-4" in those cases. Seen this done elsewhere (Richmond Hill in Asheville, NC) to good effect.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful.

 A Beautiful Disc Golf Haven

1    6/30/2020   7/1/2020
Review By: samxyx
Played: 31  Reviewed: 30  Exp: 5 Years
This review was updated on 7/5/2020
13 Helpful / 0 Not
Other Thoughts: Fantastic 27-hole course which plays in a large "disc golf only" section of a big state park. The course itself is predominately wooded and stretches across several rolling hills with many shots facing slight changes in elevation. The course is wonderfully maintained with beautiful grassy fairways. There are 4 tees and 3 basket locations for almost every hole allowing you to make the course as easy or hard as you wish. Very scenic with tee shots requiring you to maintain your line through the trees for 300-400 feet or more depending on the layout you're playing. Course is challenging yet fair in that good shots are rewarded and a bad one isn't going to cause you to lose a disc. More open than one would think for a wooded course. Great variety of shot type.

This is one of the best courses I have played. You can tell it's gonna be a good the minute you pull into the parking lot. The isolation of the course from the rest of the park allows you to really get immersed in the experience.The beautiful tree lines and overall upkeep make it feel like you are in an enchanted forest. The holes are challenging and unique. Really tests your distance and accuracy. The rough isn't going to tear you up, but it does certainly make your next shot much harder just based on the angles to the basket. Very long and tiring to complete. Expect to be on the course for several hours. Bring food and snacks.

The only suggestion I have would be the introduction of more true par-4s, and a few holes requiring more shot shaping or angled throws. This should not detract anyone from visiting this course though.

Lastly any review here would not be complete without a special shoutout to Mr. Bill and the other volunteers who upkeep the course! Mr. Bill is very friendly and always found doing something to keep the course looking great. He has even been recognized by the governor for his volunteer service. If you see him say hello.

Overall this is a great course and you'll be hard pressed to find a better one in the area (or state for that matter). If you're looking for a comprehensive disc golf experience, this is the course for you.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful.

 Will be back

1    4/14/2019   6/25/2019
Review By: where'sfinn
Played: 29  Reviewed: 14  Exp: 4.6 Years
This review was updated on 7/9/2019
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Multiple concrete tees
Multiple baskets on every hole
Flags on top of each basket.
27 holes
Great variety of elevation change between each hole.
The holes do not cross or run parallel
Great variety of course design - had to break out almost every disc and every type of throw.
Good mix of tight wooded tunnel shots and open fairway shots.
Cons: You have to pay the general park fee to even enter the greater park.
Maybe the restrooms and water are not close to the course.
Other Thoughts: Gorgeous park by itself. The course is beautiful and relaxing.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful.

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