Wooded Par-3 Monster
11 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 shots...it'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.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
A Beautiful Disc Golf Haven
11 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.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Will be back
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Multiple concrete tees
Multiple baskets on every hole
Flags on top of each basket.
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.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Three pads on every hole giving great options.
- Signs and maps on every hole.
- Well marked and laid out.
- Great variety of shots. Long, short, left and right.
- Decent amount of hazards and O.B.'s with minimum chance of loosing disc.
- Not crowded but it was a Wednesday so not sure about weekends.
- Set up like 3 nine hole courses so you end up by parking lot after 9 and 18. Gives great options to play 3 different 18 hole courses if you don't have time for 27. Also worked great for me when I caught a foursome on hole 9. I skipped to 19, and then went to 10 thru 18 after 27.
- Nice scenery including wildlife.
Cons: - Love the options with 3 pads on every hole, but some of the pads are in pretty bad shape.
- Some fairways are pretty close. Guessing it's a problem when crowded.
- With the space they have, it seems like they could spread out some of the holes a little.
Other Thoughts: I wish my home course was like this. Lots of options with the multiple pads. Also can handle more people with 27 holes. I will definitely play this course again if I get a chance. I live in California and have had the chance to play 2 courses in Virginia and 2 in Maryland. This is my favorite for the DC area. (So far)
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
still a classic
Pros: Seneca was my favorite course in the Mid Atlantic region back in the mid/late 90's, upon returning 17 years later (Dec '16) I found the 9 'new' holes to be just as great.
This course set in a scenic state park has tremendous variety to it: tight wooded shots but none are unfair, great elevation changes up down and across hills, a creek comes into play several times, marked OB rope, at least 2 tees and the majority of holes have 3 tee options, yellow flags on top of each basket, good tee signs, white poles near the disc grabbing cedar trees and multiple pin locations which I'm sure they rotate.
Seneca was known as a 'roller' course but I didn't throw any rollers (on purpose), I was able to backhand every tee shot.
The 3 loops of each 9 return to the start. 2 baskets on 3 holes. Mach 3's are my favorite basket type.
Not beginner friendly, this is a plus!
Cons: Nitpicking here since it's hard to dislike anything about this course...
The last 1 or 2 holes on each 9 are somewhat of a let down, simply not great holes and generally play left to right. I'm a RHBH player.
The tee pads are a mixture in size and material, some old ones have long narrow cement slabs, some have cement pavers and some have gravel around them helping with erosion.
Other Thoughts: Some of the original basket locations have been extended and depending on which tee you are using I thought some are now "tweener holes", a tough par 3 or easy 4.
Seneca is now listed in my "favorites".
Located near several major highways it is close to the exits but the Wash DC traffic is a pain even in non rush hour times.
Don't drive 12 mph over the speed limit on Clopper Rd with out of state plates or you might get a $40 ticket in the mail 2 weeks later.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Challenging, fun course!
Pros: Excellent shot variety here. Great mix of dense woods, with some more open shots. Lots of route options on this course, that will test every shot in your bag.
The signage is good, with well thought out tee and pin positions. Pin Positions were clearly marked.
Maintenance was great! well defined areas of play, well landscaped, with well worn paths. Good tee boxes.
Cons: Some of the holes run fairly close to each other, with mediocre to bad shots often sharing the same space. This really isn't too much of an issue, but if you aren't paying attention you bight get beaned by a rogue throw.
Other Thoughts: This really is a great course. Every hole offers excellent variety. There are doglegs in all directions, and lengths from ace run to long bomb. The trees are dense in some spots, but there is almost always a choice no matter where you land.
This is a fair course that really challenges and rewards thoughtful play. Its a good workout for your decision making and course management, which I thought was very fun.
As said above, some of the holes are pretty close together, and when it gets busy can be a bit crowded. This is something that I'm just not used to, but its not that big of a deal.
I have only played here once, and all the pins were still in the long position from the recent Seneca Soiree. This is a tough layout! I will definitely be returning to see the other pin positions, looks like pin position has a big impact here.
I will absolutely play here again, its worth visiting if you are in the area. The park on the whole is very nice with lots of other well maintained activities.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Now that's a DG Course.
Pros: Absolutely beautiful course with some very picturesque holes, with challenges to match. A whole bunch of factors come together to basically make this the best course I've played to date.
The 27 holes weave in and out of a fairly dense forest and back into grassy clearings with much more spaced trees. Each set of 9 holes forms it's own loop returning to the parking lot, so that you can play any set of 9 or 18 holes you desire. The parking lot and start of the course is on the high ground of a hill that slopes down into the surrounding creeks, so there's usually an uphill/downhill factor in most holes.
The baskets are adequate older DGA baskets with no issues, well maintained, and the various tee pads are often made with large paving stones and bricks with a few newer poured concrete pads. All are nice and long though sometimes slightly narrow. The signage is good and most of the course has various indicators of how to move from a basket to the next tee. Navigation was rarely a challenge.
There's red and white tee pads for every hole, and on some of them an additional blue (hardest) tee, that generally seemed to take the tact of giving you a more occluded entry into the fairway without being much further. Then on top of that there's 2-4 pin placements per hole to keep things fresh if you come here often. There's even a bead on a set of hooks on the tee sign to let you know which placement the pin is in!
It's hard to put my finger on exactly what it is that makes this course exceptional; everything about it is great with no weaknesses, but what exactly is outstandingly unique about the course? I think there's 2 really memorable aspects for me:
First, it's pretty. Very pretty, at least the parts within the grassy clearings with some trees with lots of character and rolling hills surrounded by the forest. There were a few tees where I just stopped to enjoy the beauty of the hole for a second before throwing. There was one completing a loop, I think it was hole 18, that made me regret not bringing my camera because I could have made a great desktop background out of that view.
Second, there's some really good course design here largely due to just how conducive the landscape is to disc golf, but credit to the designers that they didn't waste it. Some of the holes are really interesting in how they play the ceiling created by the trees against the rolling landscape of the hills. Traditionally when we talk about hitting a gap in disc golf, it's implied that the gap is horizontal in nature, between the trees on the left and the trees on the right. Here, on numerous holes, the gaps are vertical, and you've got to hit a spot between the ceiling created by the tree branches and the floor created by the rising or falling slope of turf.
One hole stands out for me where you have to play downhill and then uphill again, but in the apex of the gully the tree cover will knock down your discs as you try to squeeze out max distance. There's a risk reward decision there and on many holes, challenging how high do you dare throw in the name of distance.
Cons: You can always nit-pick, but the complaints here are really small.
The strongest complaint I can come up with is that there's an over abundance of holes requiring left-to-right shots relative to the right-to-left shots, meaning that a really good RHFH or LHBH game would have a significant advantage here, I think. I have a heavy preference for RHBH but found myself trying to throw a lot of long distance forehand here because the hold demanded it.
Besides that, while the holes that played through the scenic grassy clearings near the parking lot were amazing, some of the holes playing through the forest were a little too "plinko" for my tastes, with the fairway not being fair. I'm pretty confident hyzer flipping up tunnel shots, but there were a few here where all you can do is throw it up the gap and hope you get fairly far before you inevitably hit a tree, and don't kick too deep. One hole I recall, the biggest gap was 3 to 4 feet (it would have been okay from the tee pad immediately in front of it, but didn't play very well from the harder tee). To put this into perspective, though, it's a 27 hole course and this is maybe 5 holes we're talking about where I'd complain some trees needed to go. Generally, there's a well defined fairway to hit even through the wooded holes. This problem is sparse.
The tee pads were a bit narrow. The grass was thin and since it rained the day before it was a bit muddy. Stuff like that. You really have to reach to try to criticize this course.
Other Thoughts: It's a challenging course and I like that. I didn't play great in my 2 rounds here but that's what you'd want if you're lucky enough to get to play this course a lot. It would take time to learn the best shots for all the holes and put up some good scores.
What I'd give to have this as a home course... I could play thousands of rounds here with the multiple pin placements and never get bored.
It's great golf all around, and lots of variety. I am really glad I made the trip out. The drive through the state park to the course sets up some high expectations, and you're not disappointed in the slightest when you get there.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: A major effort to replace the older teepad has begun. The local club installed ten new concrete teepads in 2015. They are ready to play on holes 2 Blue, 3 Blue, 6 Red, 7 Red and 7 White, 11 Red, 13 Red, 18 Blue, 23 Blue and 27 Red. Average size is 4 1/2' wide x 15' long. They are large and level!
5 of 8 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Three separate nine hole loops, multiple pins and two tees on every holes give so many options for the casual player and tournament layouts to be different.
Outstanding design and use of the land (which is pretty great in its own right). Many different shots must be played through the field holes and the wooded holes alike. Having a good, well balanced game of power and finesse comes into play here - too much of one and not enough of the other will not yield a tournament winner.
Back to the land, nice elevation changes, streams, nicely mowed grass fields, beautiful wooded areas with views of the creek and far hillsides on several holes.
The park itself has nice amenities, heated bathrooms, running water, ample parking, well maintained. This is a pack it in, pack it out park - so don;t expect trash cans. But be respectful and clean up after yourself.
Cons: The tee pads always seem to be a work in progress. They are being worked on and I like what I'm seeing.
Used to be very narrow tee pads, and the older, shorter concrete ones are being expanded on.
Last time there I saw 4x6s around a few tees and others were already expanded and had a gravel base down, so this one draw back is being worked on.
And I do know just how much work it is to install 54 tee pads in some not too easy to get to places... But its my only con at Seneca
Other Thoughts: I've been traveling to and playing Seneca for 10+ years and really love it here. Seasonal allergies do just about kill me as I'm allergic to the invasive Olive trees & have had a really tough time at the Soiree more than once...
The course is well worth the 3 hour drive for me, and I would recommend it to any golfer.
The design is what I really like, it has worked through the old roller course (still was a great course) and evolved into one of the more well rounded courses in my opinion. As stated, it takes all your shots to do well here.
The variety of shot selection, risk/reward shots, as well as the mental & physical challenge of playing 27 holes in the longer pins - Seneca is truly one of my favorite courses.
If/when the tees get finished and are all large, level and consistent, this is easily a 4.75-5 course for me. I'd put it at 4.5 even with the variety of tees in use today.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 1 Not
So Right, in So Many Ways
Pros: Seneca Creek State Park hosts 27 holes of disc golf bliss. There is an terrific blend of grass, woods, water, elevation change, fun and frustration that is all contained in a wonderfully beautiful and clean park. There isn't really extreme terrain, but all of the elements that make up a good course can be found here. My favorite holes were 5, 13 and 14, some of the longest, and more wooded holes, with a creek running the length on the left of the fairways. The course was obviously very well loved, and someone was dutifully trimming branches here and there while I played. Long and short concrete tees for most, if not all holes, and usually multiple pin positions.
Cons: I couldn't really complain, but trash cans would be nice. They are going for pack in, pack out trash, and it seems to be working. All par 3, but on some holes, certainly with the long pin positions, thats no gimmie. Pets must be leashed to my doggies dismay.
Other Thoughts: Would be playing this one frequently if I lived in the area. The 4.25 average rating is dead on, but I went ahead and gave a 4.5 by virtue of having 27 holes with great equipment and impeccably clean and beautiful surroundings. I really liked the personality of this course, and it was in magnificent condition. I played the day after a tourney was hosted there. There may not be a trademark awesome hole here, but there is consistent high quality through all 27 holes. I shot a 10 over par 91 on my first and only round so far. Hope to get another crack at it someday. Very fun course in a very nice park. Other activities in addition to disc golf.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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