8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Va-Du-Mar is the name, disc golf is the game. Lucky for me the golfing is better than the funky name. I really enjoyed playing this course, and think it is one of the best in the state. I liked the combination of challenging and fun throws. The elevation changes are on nearly every hole, varying in degree from steep to slight. The fairways range from wide open on a couple, to carving place to place and turning tight corners through dense woods. Playing the long tees adds an extra punch. Two tees on each hole make the distance more manageable from the shorts, but doesn't take away all of the difficulty. Pin placements are regularly near water, on the edge of a hill, or both. Chances to crank some long drives, but accuracy is important over distance mostly. Fairways can be very tough but are balanced left/right and nicely defined.
I especially liked hole 7 and 11, both are steep downhill drives. 7 is a shorter birdie hole if you keep it down the middle, and 11 is very lengthy with a dogleg left at the bottom of the hill. 14 and 17 are open drives, but require long throws over marshy retention holes.
The tee pads were all concrete, all the baskets were there and numbered, and the long tees now have signs marking distances and basic hole map. Also, large yellow arrows help guide the transitions between holes in a few spots. The bridges crossing the water were all sturdy and nice. Overall the layout great fun and not too hard to figure out.
Cons: The most obvious fault was the total lack of benches at any point in the round. Didn't see many trash cans either. A map might be helpful, but I really didn't have too much trouble navigating the course. I played the day after the snow fell, and there were slick, muddy spots, but not too bad. Still, the steep hill sides could get dicey, so be careful. Water is present on many holes, and though several of my throws were in the creek, all discs were retrieved. Bad rolls and tree ricochets may be expected, due to terrain features.
Other Thoughts: Winter canopy on the trees might have helped me some, but this course still kicked my tail. The 20 mph cold wind definitely played a part, and so did the water. My short game was not sharp, and I was way over par. I still had an awesome time! I might have been too generous and over-rated by a half star, but to make up for the 3.36 average rating from previous reviews. The course is killer, meriting a solid 4 minimum. Install benches and a few trash cans, and a 4.5 could be justifiable in my opinion. I never played the old layout, but the current one is great. I'm ready to sound the awesome course alert. Serious disc golfers, this one is worth making the trip. Sort of reminds me of Bowers Park in Tuscaloosa, AL.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Nice intermediate course
Pros: Nice course with really good use of elevation through most of the round. It's not the hardest course around, but it has a nice variety of shots, even on the more open holes.
Pretty good risk/reward on most holes, with some pretty steep hills in play on several, and a small creek running along several holes (although retrieval is never really a problem, except for possibly the pit on 14). I particularly liked 14, which is a 200ish shot over a pit to a thin (10 ft wide) ridge. I was fortunate to keep it up on the ridge both rounds I played. The downhill bomber/dogleg left hole (11 I think?) was an especially nice hole, probably the signature hole on the course. It was nice having long tees on most holes, as well.
Following the course is relatively easy, with yellow arrow markers located after most baskets. They also seem to have done a really nice job with clearing out the nasty brush, as well.
Cons: For such a nice course, I'd expect there to benches on more holes. The lack of signs was also surprising. Distances, par (I played everything as a 3, just to be consistent), elevation change, and hole diagrams would go a LONG way towards making this a 4-4.5 course.
I REALLY would have liked to see a better way down the hill on hole 7, as well. That's a hairy descent, to be mild about it. I would be downright frightened to go down it with anything but super dry ground.
Other Thoughts: Despite the cons, this really is a great little course that I'd be more than happy to call my home course. A decent variety of shots, and two really nice setups with the short/long tees. The teepads are nice, although I prefer trapezoidal concrete to just a straight rectangle.
Overall, a really nice spot to stop for a couple rounds if you're in the area.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Great course with lots of elevation change. Nice play through trees. Some holes you can rip it off the tee while others require a little more finesse.
Cons: The two holes with nearby water hazards ate my disc.
Other Thoughts: Close to so will play often.
0 of 9 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 8 Not
Used to be better.
Pros: Nice challenge. A number of thread the needle holes that require some good straight drives. I especially like the two downhill holes that really make you feel like you've ripped it. I could throw those over and over again. Very nice wooded terrain like a peaceful walk in the woods.
Cons: Lots of opportunities for lost discs in woods and brush if you're not careful. We actually could not find 2 holes or the starting pad for another. I believe 14 was the one we couldn't find the pad and 18 was one where we couldn't find the hole. Used to be one of my favorite courses.. Several times I had to walk halfway to the basket just to figure out where to throw.
Other Thoughts: This course was better in my opinion before the recent revamp. With better markings, could be a great course.
2 of 10 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: So, I have played this course 2 times since its redesign and I must say that the second was far superior to the first. I initially was quite upset about the changes to the back but after playing the 90% finished product that has changed completely.
The first item I want to point out is that I only played from the longs and prob wont play shorts again because the long layout was just that much fun.
Hole 2- the new long tee has a well manicured path to it, and a defined fairway(mowed,with tall grass on left and right.) this is a bomb and a really fun shot. Par was taken by me.
Hole 6- FINALLY!!!! the long tee is finally enjoyable. there is enough room to try and float one down the fairway with enough height to go for the birdie 3. Thank you for this! (Par)
Hole 10- The other original par 4 hole is slightly better. the tee shot is still very tight, but the new pin position is a little more forgiving. (Par)
Hole 11- What an awesome par 5. The only true par 5 anywhere in the upstate. ( I took a 7) this hole will challenge anyone. you have to place each of your shots precisely to get a 5 or maybe even a 4.
Hole 12- LOVE THIS. I was so glad they kept the two trees in play on this course. the old 13 long was a good hole, this is a great hole. I was undecided as to which gap to aim for (the lefty hyzer around or the tunnel) I ended up in between. but a great second shot can give the opportunity for a birdie. (my first of the day)
Hole 13- This hole is deceptively challenging. I thought it would be a nice easy lefty hyzer around the gap but i left it short. and flubbed my upshot,(BOGEY)
Hole 18- Another challenging par 4. this can be pretty forgiving but a 5 looms if you dont hit the first or second shots right. (Par)
Cons: The only reason I did not give this course a 4.5 is because there was limited signage and no Tee pads on 14. Signs would really help on some of the longer holes and will improve my rating once installed. also, not having a clearly marked tee or teepad for 14 was a small let down. Again, once this is done my rating will go up.
Other Thoughts: All I can say is this course is my new favorite in the Upstate, and #2 in the State. (Stoney Hill is #1) If you have not played this course since the redesign, or have only played it before they finished the fairways and lines, GO PLAY VA DU MAR! You will not be disappointed.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Worth your time
Pros: This course was updated during the winter of 2011-12.
Offers a variety of open vs. wooded holes
- Water hazards
- Risk/reward shots
- Birdie opportunities
Yellow next tee arrows are up at most baskets.
Spartanburg Parks and Rec have done a great job in the last few months clearing briars and making new fairways for updated holes.
Cons: Needs tee signage, including distances and pars. Maps would be an added plus. Very few of the original signs remain.
#18 strays near a parking lot (though the new tee keeps the fairway further away).
Still a LH bias (I am a lefty)
Other Thoughts: Recent course changes have addressed complaints that the course was too easy.
Here's the new layout:
Park near the playground area across from a practice basket that used to be the basket for #18. Tees for #1 are visible near the basket.
#1 Long: Either go straight through the grove of trees or around to the left with a long hyzer. This basket was moved further from the tee with the course update.
#1 Short: Choose either left or right of the tree in the middle. A LHBH or RHFH shot can land you very near the basket with some luck.
#2 Long: From Basket #1 turn left and walk up the hill. A new tee has been poured at the crest of the hill. Play down the hill following the fence. The basket is located near the gate on a flat landing zone. Past the fence is OB.
#2 Short: From basket #1 continue straight toward the post ahead. Shoot toward the fence and aim to make it just past the last tree. LHBH or RHFH has the fairest chance of landing near the basket. Past the fence is OB.
#3 Long: Follow the path to the right of basket #2 to the steps on the right. Tee is at the top. Beware of the tree on the right side of the fairway as you cross the path. It has claimed many drives. Basket is near the creek. Creek and beyond is OB.
#3 Short: Tee is located at the bottom of the steps leading to #3 Long. A straight shot that begs for a midrange or approach disc. Drivers have a tendency to skip toward the creek. Creek and beyond is OB.
#4 Long: Cross the bridge and turn right. Yet again, the tree on the right side of the fairway adds technicality to this shot. Basket lies behind and between two trees.
#4 Short: Tee is to the left when you cross the bridge from basket #3. A long straight shot with a fairway driver or midrange can give you a look at an ace almost every time. The two trees add an intimidation factor since it's difficult to shoot from directly behind them.
#5 Long: From basket #4 look at about 2 o clock. The tee is up on the hill near the housing development. This basket has been updated. This throw is perfect for a long slight uphill RH left hyzer. LH players probably need an understable disc to make the turn. The basket is on the same side of the running track up on the hill.
#5 Short: From basket #4 look right to see the pad. This basket has been updated. RHBH and LHFH have the easiest line up to the basket. Go for gold. An ace is a definite possibility.
#6 Long: Continue up the hill from basket #5 to find the tee. This will take a well placed first shot to keep you out of the woods. The fairway has been widened to the left to allow a longer turn time. The basket is set near the edge of the hill after the dogleg left. Do whatever it takes to stay on top of the hill.
#6 Short: From basket #5 walk along the running track to the tee. For the weak of heart, lay up halfway down the fairway to set up an easy lay up. For the bold, a LHBH or RHFH laser guided missile can slide right up to the basket. But beware, any mistake will more than likely send you to the depths below.
#7 Short/Long: The old short tee (just beyond #6 basket) is no longer in use. From #6 basket look left and walk up the short path to the tee. The basket is all the way down the hill near the creek. A skilled turnover/hammer can drop in near the pin. Otherwise, a very straight midrange or approach disc works well. Throw low over the ledge to maintain the beeline for the basket. Creek and beyond is OB.
#8 Long: Turn left at basket #7. The tee is near the creek. Your shot will mirror the curve of the creek. A dogleg up and right to the basket taunts you with plenty of opportunity to get wet. Creek and beyond is OB.
#8 Short: The shortest throw on the course. An approach disc works well since it doesn't skip as easily. If you go for it here you might find yourself in the creek. Dogleg right up the hill. Creek and beyond is OB.
#9 Long: Walk down the hill from basket #8 and go straight ahead. One tree bends out over the fairway just in front of the tee pad. A low fairly straight shot from a LHBH or RHFH will often skip up the hill toward the basket.
#9 Short: From basket #8 walk down the hill and head to the left. A RHOH can slide right up to the pole. LHBH and RHFH have a decent ace attempt. Any very straight thrower can put a shot on the chains as well.
#10 Long: From #9 basket turn right and follow the yellow arrow across the running path and down a short path that will dump you out on #10 fairway (#10 short tee was formerly located here). Turn right and walk 100' to the tee. The shot is a long left hyzer with an uphill finish to the pin. The basket has been moved down and to the right and now sits on the edge of the running path.
#10 Short: From #9 basket continue up the hill. This is an updated hole. Several trees are marked as mandos here. A right hyzer shot down across the running path.
#11 Long: This is an updated hole. Turn left from basket #10 and look for the yellow arrow pointing left. A short path through the woods leads to the intimidating tee pad. A right dogleg leads to the downhill fairway. A left 90 at the creek narrows the fairway to the basket which hovers dangerously near the edge of the creek. Be happy with a 5. Creek and beyond is OB.
#11 Short: This has an updated basket location. Follow the running path and turn to the right out of the woods. The basket you see across the creek is #12. Downhill with a 90 degree left turn at the creek. Creek and beyond is OB.
#12 Long: This is an updated hole. Cross the culvert bridge and walk past #12 Short tee. Walk toward the bench up the slight hill. Tee is on the left between two large trees which make a natural throwing lane. The tee is formerly #13 long but has been shifted slightly to aim it for #12. The stated fairway is right through the grove of trees and to the right of the large oak trees in the drainage area, though going outside of the large oaks to the left is a possibility. The basket stands in a circle of trees near the creek.
#12 Short: From #11 basket cross the culvert bridge. This is an updated hole. Fairway follows the creek. Trees scattered throughout make navigation a nightmare. Keep it low and straight. A birdie is possible with good placement.
#13 Long/Short: Turn left and walk toward the tennis courts. The tee is placed near the edge of the trees before the hill ascending to the tennis courts. This hole was reintroduced after a long hiatus. A LHBH or RHFH shot placed out wide from the trees and just short of "the pit" can skip pretty close to the basket. Bottom of the pit and beyond is OB.
#14 Long: From basket #13 turn left and follow the edge of the pit to the very corner. The flat ground (no tee installed yet) straight back is the "pad." Go for glory across the pit or lay up short and then cross over. Bottom of the pit is OB. Creek and beyond is OB. The hill in front of the pin is playable (the OB stobs have been removed, so I assume the entire front hill in in bounds). The back hill and flat area before the creek are in play.
#14 Short: Continue around the pit. Straight across from basket #13 are two flags on top of the hill. I assume this is the location of the short tee. This is an updated tee since the old pad is near basket #13. Shoot across the pit or try to land on the berm closer to the tee. A disc dropped in the pit could be lost forever in certain places.
#15 Long: Cross the bridge down and to the left of basket #14 and then turn right. Navigate your way through the mostly open but technical fairway. Creek and beyond (I assume) to the left is OB. Basket is protected on the right by about half a dozen trees.
#15 Short: Cross the bridge and turn left. A LHBH or RHFH shot over the creek can ess right to the basket.
#16 Long: Walk straight ahead from basket #15. Shoot across the creek and straight ahead. The basket is tucked behind a line of trees near the creek. Basket #7 is visible across the creek once you near #16's pin. Plenty of air to the left gives you a chance to really put some muscle into a throw. Creek and beyond is OB.
#16 Short: Cross the bridge. The open fairway on the left is the choice of most. A second fairway to the right of the trees following the path of the creek is available. The basket is tucked behind the last tree. Creek and beyond is OB.
#17 Long: Follow the creek along the side of "the abyss." Long tee crosses over the pit and drops you out on the beautiful green near the creek. There is a double threat here. Any part of the pit is OB, hill included. Creek and beyond is also OB. The only real option is to try for the green.
#17 Short: Continue along the path between the creek and the pit. Hyzers left and right are possible. A straight shot with a good midrange or approach are feasible as well. Go for the ace if you have the guts. Any part of the pit is OB, hill included. Creek and beyond is also OB.
#18 Long: Continue around the pit. Nestled in the woods just before you make the turn is the long tee. This is an updated hole. This is the same tee as old #18 Long. Basket #18 was taken out to become the practice tee. Now take a dogleg right and head straight for the basket formerly known as #19. Now the threat moves from pit to parking lot. Basket is on the dirt area near tee #1.
#18 Short: From basket #17 follow the pit around to the tee. This is the same short tee as old #18 Short as well. Make the right dogleg and head for the basket along the side of the parking lot. Cars often park right near the basket, so caution is necessary.
Old #19 tee near the corner of the parking lot is no longer in play.
This is a great course for anyone with plenty of new twists and turns to please most players. With added signage McMillan would be much improved. I love this course and play it weekly.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Nice course. Fairly wooded with a variety of ranges. Holes are spread out enough that being hit with shanked discs is very unlikely.
Cons: i would like a course map at the beginning and maps on each hole which this course had neither when i played. there were 2 holes that i actually couldn't find
0 of 9 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Make you work work...make you work
Pros: Beautiful course with minimal trash. They really have done a ton to this park.
You really have to work to stay under par here. You have all kinds of shots here. Elevation, super long, tight/technical, up/down.
Finally has an excellent bathroom area.
Changes have been made to make this a challenging course to play.
Cons: Finally has a good bathroom area but it isn't anywhere near where you would park to play the course. You really have to drive there before you start or after you finish.
No signage - I hear of new signs coming so I am excited to see those.
Other Thoughts: I'm not a fan of some of the changes. Hole 2 really makes no sense to tuck it even farther right on that long anhyzer. Hole 11 again a dogleg hard left and a hard 3 although I did manage to 3 it today. I guess I just enjoyed the previous shot long up the hill on the right.
In the end it is a course that just drives you nuts sometimes but I enjoy myself when I come here.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
It's still Va-Du-Mar to me!
9 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Shoally Creek is a solid, enjoyable course. More important, it's the same course it was back when it was the much more memorably named Va-Du-Mar.
- I heard people talk about how a lot of work had gone into redesigning this course. Well, in the several years between playing it the first and second time, nothing really changed here. One hole was different and a couple had slight tweaks. That's a major redesign? In Charlotte, that's a typical year for Renny. Or Kilborne. Or Elon. Or Hornets Nest.
- This has a general simple yet not easy layout. There's not a lot of frills here (a positive); not a lot of gimmicky layouts (a positive); not a lot of overthinking of hole designs (a positive); and a reliance on the terrain to create the challenges (a positive). Many courses could learn from being efficient with the terrain. Sometimes a relatively open hole with a few strategically located trees can be just as difficult as one that's heavily wooded. You see that playing out on #14 (a really good hole) and #18.
- Excellent variety of layouts - open holes (#1 & 2); wooded (#9 & 10); elevation factors (#7 & 11); great risk/reward layouts - #13 & 17 - where the risk means landing in a varying degree of swampy water. Holes #13 & 17 also requires you to hit your landing spot on the approach (if laying up) or your tee shot (if you're a big arm). Ending up short is a big no-no; going long leaves a challenging return shot.
- Course does a nice job turning up level of challenge throughout the round. The first four holes are nice warm-up holes. At some point around hole #6 or 7, I realized I should have been more aggressive and tried for birdies rather than be content with making easy pars. As the challenge slowly built throughout the round, I never had any blow up holes so thought I was playing alright. It wasn't until I added up my score at the end did I realize how much over par I shot. Well played Shoally. Well played indeed.
- Nice tee signs and tee pads. I also like that many holes have the bag hangers. The course as a whole has a nice, easy flow to it. Even without a map, a first timer should be able to navigate pretty well.
Cons: My biggest gripe is that I'm having to rewrite a review because the local scene erroneously determined the Va-Du-Mar layout needed to be retired. Changing one hole and redesigning small parts of several others is not a course overhaul. I'm more annoyed I can't take the easy way out and copy and paste that review I had for Va-Du-Mar.
- I like everything in concept about hole #11. On paper (tee sign), it looks like it should be an elite signature hole. For some reason, it doesn't quite have that 'something' when it's actually being played. Part of that is from the redesign, which turned this hole into more of a target-to-target layout that can effectively be played only one way. It reminds me of #12 at Nevin (in Charlotte) in that quasi-negative sense.
- Having paths as fairways on several holes (as well as playing over the on a couple others) on the front 9 could be an issue. I saw people walking on the path/fairway on #6 only after I threw my shot. This also makes the fairways on #6 & 8 very narrow.
- There's something about holes #17 & 18 that seem slightly 'off' for me. They don't seem like the best of closing holes - I think I'd enjoy them more at some other point of the round. Also #17 just seems like it misses that 'something' that keeps it from being a great hole. For me, the short tee (209 feet) takes away too much of the challenge; whereas, the long tee (353 feet) means only bigger arms can actually make a run. For people who throw in the 300-foot range, you're left throwing far right, eliminating the entire risk/reward facet.
Other Thoughts: Va-Du-Mar is a more exciting course name than Shoally Creek. If the park is Va-Du-Mar, why the name change?
- Course has a lot of fun and challenging aspects to it. I like that this course is fair while (mostly) not being overly difficult. There's lots of room to recover if you don't throw a perfect tee shot.
- That said, the holes that consider paths/roads as fairways isn't something I'd expect for a course of this level. Having the road as a fairway for #5, 6 & 8 is such a negative that it takes until hole #11 to wipe the stank off.
- Holes #14 - 16 present a great and fun, three-hole layout. #14 is that awesome risk/reward hole. #15 is top notch in terms of its layout & flow. #16 is your finally chance to be aggressive.
- The course is solidly good, it's just not great. There's nothing wrong with a solid 3.5 rated course. I can put this course on the level of Pipeline, Grand Central or (the first 18 at) Holston Creek. I can say this is a solid, slightly less demanding and great change of pace if you're looking for an above average course in the Upstate.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful.
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