A New Style
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: First off- this is NOT your typical campus course. If you are looking for a pitch and putt, go somewhere else. It's definitely not here.
Wide open bombs throughout, it is an obvious change from the more frequently visited wooded courses nearby. (Knob, Moraine, Deer Lakes) If you don't feel comfortable throwing long distance shots, a lot, then be ready to test yourself.
With most shots being wide open, it can sometimes be hard to force different shots, but Slippery Rock does a good job of making this possible. You will often find yourself weaving around OB paths, buildings, and the ever so ominous ponds on property.
Another challenging factor- wind. When you reach the middle part of the course, you are working straight up 'heart attack hill" (Hole 7) This means, you are in the wide open, on top of the highest point in the property. You will be faced with heavy winds, especially during certain times of year.
With wide open shots, there are often holes that can be boring, but also spectacular. One hole that really sticks out to me is Hole 12. You are throwing a wide open, down hill shot. OB looming right, but with the right angle, and a good amount of wind help, you can throw shots that you had no idea you had the capability of.
Amenities- Innova Discatchers in good shape. Gold tees have nicely groomed rubber pads, the rest are natural, or painted on paths, but not worn out. Tee signs are helpful and informative. Many facilities nearby.
Cons: A lot of the pros I listed, also have another side to them. Sure, it is nice to bomb out every once and a while, but...
Repetition- I did say that there was a large range of shots, but no matter what angle you throw on, at SRU, you are throwing for max distance. You don't have short technical shots to test those parts of your game.
Tee pads- Gold Tees are fine, I prefer concrete, but the rubber tees hold up and are groomed nicely. However, for mere mortals who aren't Paul Mcbeth, playing the white or green tees are less awesome. They are in good shape now, but with time, they could be a problem. On a campus course, it is hard to have three permanent tees, so I understand, but a con nonetheless.
Crowd- Campus Course. During School days, and even some non school days, you have many people walking on the walking paths, walking across fairways, playing on the soccer fields. It can be unsafe, but with playing smart, you can avoid issue. So... PLAY SMART.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Great course and change of pace
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Pros: Long, open course. Gold's play at almost 10k feet. Beautifully kept up since on and around Slippery Rock University's campus. The course is broken down into 6's. The first, second, and third set of 6 holes all end in the same parking lot area. Great if you want to start at 7 (giant uphill hole) to get that out of the way, or you can easily start from several others spots due to the ample parking around campus. Typically a very windy course, especially on the second set of 6 holes. Requires some power if you look to shoot a good, under-par score. This is also a great change of pace when compared to the other World's courses (Moraine, Deer, and Knob). Far less wooded than Deer and Moraine and MUCH longer than Knob. Right next to Slippery Rock as well so super easy to grab food before or after rounds.
Cons: A decent amount of parking lots, buildings, roads, ponds, and fences can make retrieving discs sometimes difficult. Probably the easiest course out of Moraine and Deer and this but the most likely to completely lose a disc. Far less jungle style rough than Deer and Moraine but some VERY tall grass areas starting around 7. Also, the short pads are almost if not completely just grass. I believe all gold tees are
Other Thoughts: Great course. Not a ton of shade on super sunny or wet days but really offers a good combination of skill and distance shots. I'd recommend bringing a disc gator or other retrieving device in case you get a disc in the drink. Also, recommend stopping at Bob's Subs or the Brewery after the round for some grub.
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: --Very diverse course. Will test every throw you have
--3 tees have EXTREME difference in challenges. I watched the pro's play the final 9 from the long tees and was astounded at the difference between their tees and ours. The course swallowed even a few of the pro's discs from the gold tees.
--Elevation was amazing! Hole 7 is my favorite hole ever despite struggling with it. I watched a guy putt from 10 feet away and the wind took his disc 100 feet to the left. I putt from 5 feet away with my X-Caliber driver!! It was that windy and that high elevation. Amazing!
--Lots of OB which makes an otherwise open course very challenging. Some are simple grass (rugby field) which are easily retrievable and some are narrow landing spots by the water which made for some awesome "throw and pucker" sensations.
--Very pretty settings.
Cons: --A few of the walks between holes would be difficult to nearly impossible if no one in your group had played here before. In my tourney round, 3 of the 4 of us had never played here and 1 only played once the week before and a couple times it was tough to find the next hole.
-This course would be nearly impossible IF you have mobility issues due to extreme elevation changes
-The university was nearly empty save for a lacrosse tournament (did not impede disc golfing) but I can imagine during the school year this course could be tough to play. Some holes literally run inches away from students apts and patios. Some holes run right along the main entrance ways and roads and parked cars would be only an OB throw away.
-Lots of lost discs into water during tourney (I was not one thankfully)
-Surprised by how little was out there for being a college town. Only places to grab a quick bite to eat was a McD and a Subway, that's it.
Other Thoughts: This was my first time playing this course, despite it being about 15 minutes from Moraine State Park where I go a few times per Summer. Easy to find and get to, directions on this website are spot on.
Windiest course I have ever played on. One guy in my group said "I wish I could b***slap the wind"...pretty funny, but seriously, it was like a category 1 hurricane on some holes!
These reviews are from the short tees. If something amazing from the long tees, I will try to reference:
Hole 1 - From the short tees, you have a nice hyzer (for a righty) shot with the basket at the base of a hill. OB water to the left and short or basket, OB parking lot on top of the hill. It is short enough that it is easily doable but just enough OB to make you think and hit your shot. Noticed a lot of guys threw it into the hill and let it roll down towards basket.
Hole 2 - Straight forward (literally) open hole with OB everywhere...behind basket, left of basket and fairway, right of basket if you grip lock. One tall bush "conveniently placed" to punish a safe hyzer shot that comes to rest right of the basket (to avoid drop off to OB left) Birdie hole with a straight drive, OB with too much hyzer, par because of bush if you play it safe.
Hole 3 - Easiest hole on the course. Short, open, fairly boring. Some big pines/evergreens surround the basket to make a birdie not a given but cant imagine ever taking worse than a 3 on this.
Hole 4 - Pucker hole. Long narrow fairway (think it was about 350?) with a low ceiling, OB immediately on your left (drive), and OB water to your right, lots of trees in fairway to clunk off of or send astray. Best shots I saw were forehands (righty) into parking lot and let it skip back in. Imagine that would be tough during school session. Amazing shot and hole from long tees, swallowed two pro's discs.
Hole 5 - Wide open, but somewhat downhill, fun to throw it out and watch it glide. Says it is a par 4 but feels like a par when getting 3...if you can throw 250 it is easy to get a 3.
Hole 6 - Uphill, fenced football field on your right. Threw a hyzer out over the fence and let it come back, took a birdie. Very windy so make sure you throw overstable lest the wind push your disc back onto the field.
Hole 7 - Has to be considered the "signature hole". Even from the shorts it is a par 5, 500ft, straight uphill (20% grade?) The basket sat atop yet another peak, punishing severely any errant putt. The wind atop the peak was ferocious. As I said, I putt from 5 ft with my most overstable driver (X Caliber) and it still almost flipped up in the wind.
Hole 8 - Downhill shot. Would be easy if not for insane wind. As it was, wind took many decent drives astray. Overstable overstable overstable.
Hole 9 - Easy shot, similar to hole 3. Little windier than 3 hence why "not as easy" but even less distance.
Hole 10 - Another uphill shot. Hidden OB behind the basket (rugby field), maybe 30 feet behind.
Hole 11 - The bain of my existence that round. Double circle 8 I took on a par 5. Easy par the next round when I just concentrated on staying in the center of the field and didn't worry about distance. Very open, slight elevation on this hole, long, and windy
Hole 12 - Signature Hole #2. Long downhill shot. I saw three discs sitting atop the dorms WAY to the right which shows what can happen on a bomb shot and the wind. Throw it correct and you will double your distance on this shot, very fun. This was the "wettest" hole as the bottom of the hill was a mini-ravine and was just mud and standing water.
Hole 13 - Uphill, OB to left, open. Elevation is only challenge here, plays longer than it looks.
Hole 14 - Short little open hole, with the basket sitting in the middle of a steep downslope. OB to the right of the basket. Even a good drive can turn into a 4 or 5 if a putt is errant and rolls.
Hole 15 - Short Par 5 with a straight and narrow fairway (OB close on the right, woods on the left) and a big left turn, almost hook, into the woods where the basket sits. I hit chains on 2nd shot with two consecutive hyzer drives. I threw initial drive out over OB field and let it come back but also saw some other's drives held up in wind and never came back.
Hole 16 - Short downhill through the woods. Low ceiling (overhand shots would be easy otherwise but pretty much taken out here) Lefties seem to have advantage on this hole so a decent forehand would work too.
Hole 17 - Long open bomb through grass, downhill. Huge ski hill looming there but does not play in disc (would be cool if it did) to a mid-range through the woods into another opening. I saw a basket placement in ground right at opening of woods which would make this hold boring, glad it wasn't there. It was a fun bomb drive, accurate mid-range, to a tough putt in wind and downhill looming behind the basket.
Hole 18 - Love this hole despite its difficulty. Long narrow shot (wetlands and cattails on right, woods on left) with a low ceiling to a small landing zone amongst the dorms to either a hyzer or overhand over or around the water hazard, to a fairly small landing zone where the basket sits. Go left and your disc is lost. Go right and you are OB easily, go long and your disc is wet though retrieveable. The dorm removes a big hyzer so options limited and the passage between water and building is narrow so don't end up right of the building on initial drive or you are going to have to bomb a blind forehand over the water (or take a short approach shot to get in front of building which is a stroke added)
All in all, love this course. Immediately texted my friend and said "we have to play this" as he doesn't get out much anymore. I had not played in a year and this was my welcome back. I shot 1 over and 3 under par for my 2 rounds so from the shorts, it is do-able.
The long tees are just another beast entirely.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Nice course on a nice campus.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: Nice well maintained course. Good signs that point in direction of next hole. 3 tee boxes on each hole. Nice layout of holes with lots of different shots.
Cons: The only tee boxes with rubber tend to be the pro tees. Other tee boxes are grass/gravel/sidewalk. Course can get a little muddy but with all the water hazards I guess that should be expected. Watch out for people before throwing. This course plays around campus buildings. Course can be confusing to follow cause it don't play in your typical circle pattern of most courses. Download a map before playing.
Other Thoughts: I really enjoyed this course! Definitely a course I'd play again.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Get out your high speed drivers
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course at SRU is a bomber's dream, consisting of many long, wide open par 4's and 5's. The redesign uses the potential of the property well with some pretty drastic elevation changes and by having formed a few much-needed wooded holes. I'd imagine the pros enjoyed playing this style of course, especially for a final 9 setting, being able to showcase their power and accuracy in throwing some ridiculous bombs. This course tested my power probably more than any other one I've played.
Altogether, there is a huge variety of distances (156-879') and pars (six par 4's and three par 5's). And if you love using you high speed drivers, you'll get plenty of chances from the gold tees with the shortest hole being 315'. Many of the holes incorporate elevation changes in a wide variety of ways, most notably 7's extreme uphill shot and 12's downhill bomb.
Water is used very effectively and in different, interesting ways. You get a few straight over the pond shots (1, 6, and 18), a spike hyzer (4), and a creek behind the basket (5).
This course provides some pretty unique holes, like 17's sharp left to right shot that starts out open and then plays through an opening in the woods. The multidimensional holes like this and 15 help elevate the course and give it more variety.
As usual with campus courses, it's immaculately clean, maintained, and for the most part free of any rough. This is appreciated when a course is long and open like this one - bad shots don't get punished with searches for your disc. But, there are chances that you'll get punished by throwing O.B., which is well used throughout the course.
While there are some long walks between holes, navigation is well guided by an abundance of 'next tee' signs.
The tees signs and baskets are great and look brand new. The gravel-filled rubber mats from the golds are comfortable to throw from and are a great size.
Cons: Sometimes campus courses are conveniently tucked away on a more secluded piece of college property, like the nearby IUP course. Others are campus courses in the truest sense and play right through the middle of the action. While some holes are more secluded, playing here when school is in session means being interfered (or being the one interfering) with people and events. On the Monday evening that I played, the campus was sprawling with students and sports activities. The first six holes or so play close to and even over a congested walking path. Also, some of the middle holes play next to sports fields which could cause some interference. With wind, hole 12's downhill bomb could cause errant shots to hit off the dorm or onto the patio area. Trust me, I did both.
The open nature of the course got repetitive for me, but I should note that I much prefer shorter, wooded holes than longer, open ones. Luckily, there were a few wooded holes sprinkled in there. I would have preferred less completely open shots, but that's more of a personal preference kind of thing.
While I appreciate that the different tees cater to a wide variety of players, the green/white tees are a big drop off from the golds. I feel like this course is meant to be played from the golds. Also, the green/whites are natural with spray painted boxes.
Other Thoughts: SRU has one of the best campus courses that I've played. The designers did a great job setting the course to Worlds/Pro standard with its emphasis on long, accurate drives. Any time a course stands out for something - this one being its incredible test of power - it's worth playing. A few tips: play when college is out, or if during school after 5pm so you don't have to worry about getting a parking ticket, and give yourself enough time to play from the gold tees.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Slippery Rock University's disc golf course is characterized by long, open shots with treacherous elevation throughout and numerous out-of-bounds. Water hazards of various forms are intermittently scattered through the course, and clumps of woods change up play at a few points, namely on 9-10 and 15-17. An open style emphasizing distance drives, placement, and negotiating elevation predominates, but there are also some dramatic lines, technical windows, and challenging landing zones to navigate. The course favors big arms, especially from the gold tees (where 400'+ of controllable D is basically mandatory), but does stress alternative skill sets at points. Aggressive distance can be punished given the water, elevation, and out-of-bounds, especially on a windy day, so there's a lot of weighing conservative versus assertive play.
One of Slippery Rock's advantages is that its open style complements the region's tendency towards technical courses. Nearby Moraine, for instance, plays much tighter. While I think Slippery Rock would have benefited from a few more technical holes, it does open distance and placement golf very well, and there aren't any courses like it in the greater area. That makes it a novel offering in a region blessed with great courses.
I found navigation to be easy owing to the excellent signage. The layout is quirky, with several long or unintuitive transitions, but these were made seamless thanks to prominent and extensive signage. Kudos to the designers on this front, as the navigation could have easily been rough.
Three sets of tees on each hole accommodate a variety of skill levels. Some holes feel clearly built for the golds, but many do a good job of maintaining interest across the whites and greens as well.
My favorite stretch of holes was 15-18. 15 is an awesome open-to-wooded transition with a guarded pin that is especially tricky in the C position, where it's really tucked away and makes for a challenging approach. 16 is a short left-to-right shot in tight confines. 17 is quirky, playing around a bend, up a hill and through a tree line, with both placement and tight windows to deal with. And 18 is a great finisher, with a prominent water hazard factoring in both off the tee and on the approach. A great series of holes that does a lot to round out the course.
Cons: The course's openness is a limiting factor that impedes variety. It becomes repetitious, especially in the middle, with lots and lots of hyzers in the open, especially if you have a passable forehand. There's enough change in distance and elevation to cause you to reach for different discs, but the lines they'll be flying are often the same. I heard one prominent pro comment at the end of his second SRU round at this past year's Worlds, "I am so disenfranchised with this course." I can understand why.
As mentioned above, distance is largely mandatory. I throw 350' with accuracy and can push 400' on distance lines, and I felt as though I couldn't appreciably play at least a third to half of the holes from the gold tees. This wasn't always an issue, but the design of some holes is really geared towards the golds. At a few points, there's a sense of distance for the sake of distance; 11 is a good example of this.
Related to this occasional push for distance just for grandiosity's sake is a sense of the design aspiring to be more than it can be given the land that's available. Hole 4 tries to provide a scary water carry for even pro arms, but its lack of alternative route means it either plays recklessly or awkwardly for many even on that level. The short tees are an afterthought that make for an underwhelming hole. 12 is one of the best completely open holes I have ever played in its tiered descent towards the pin via carved-out plateaus, but between the distance excess and blandness of 11 and 13 it can easily seem like just another series of hyzers. I can't fully fault the designers because SRU seems tailor built for Worlds 2015, where its length and focus on the gold tees makes more sense, but for everyday play by everyday players it often seems a bit too big in its britches.
There's lot of road OB that comes into play. These are mostly campus roads, but main roads also abut fairways at one or two points. The course also plays near dorms, buildings, sidewalks, and sports fields, bringing about lots of potential conflict with campus goers. My early August round was pleasantly unobstructed, but I see that as being the exception rather than the norm.
OB which is integral to some holes is probably not often well-marked. I benefited from playing while the course was set up for Worlds.
Other Thoughts: I'm of two minds about SRU's course. It's got some fun, unique holes, especially for the area, but also lots of shot repetition and focus on the pro game. Throw in the potential for conflict with campus goers and its hard to see this course as more than good not great. Definitely worth a visit, but only after you've played the mainstays in the area: this isn't a Moraine/Deer Lakes/Knob Hill level course in my eyes. Of course, not many are.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Crush and Watch
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This review refers to the 2015 Worlds Gold layout. Beautiful setting with plenty of wide open crushes mixed in with some OB (strings and water) to keep you on your toes. Most of the holes are relatively open and favor the biggest arms, but a few touch shot holes are included for variety. Holes 1-5 can be tricky, especially with the water OB on 1 and 4. Hole 4 made me wish I was young again, as those of us with average arms are forced to throw across the short part of the pond and then play a scary left-right shot around trees with thirsty OB water near the pin. The big armed youngsters throw a crush straight across the pond...much more fun! Holes 16-18 provide a great finishing stretch with a variety of tee shots ranging from easy putter (16) to crush roller or air shot (17) to a finesse mid-rangy tee shot to set you up for a scary pond shot onto a small peninsula (18). Great fun (and sphincterizer).
Cons: Can be very hard to follow with some very long walks between holes. Hard to judge distances...markers would be great on this course!
Other Thoughts: I did not appreciate Slipper Rock fully until I walked it during the Worlds 2015 Finals. This course is made for spectating, with beautiful views that combine aesthetics with technical appreciation. The view from behind the pin on 4 with the pond and trees was breathtaking, as were the rolling hills and sculpted landscape from the tee of hole 12 (the finishing hole of the Finals). This ranks among the top of the most beautiful venues for watching Disc Golf that I have ever experienced.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Slippery Rock's campus course. I was pleasantly surprised. Especially after the first 5 holes, how the final 13 turned out. There is a great variety of holes here, L,R, Straight, with risk reward. Hole 1, great looking hole and a nice way to start off the course. 2-5 didnt really do much for me though. The rest of the course, wow, what a workout. Up and down hills, weaving in and out of sparse woods. I found the wind difficult to read, what a great scoring separator. There are so many epic up and down hill throws, its not worth mentioning them all specifically. There are a number of holes where water comes into play. It looks like discs in those areas are retievable, this reviewer did not have to test that theory. Additional risk/reward. Make sure to stop here on your way down 79, and bring your whole bag!
Cons: I found issue with a number of things on this course. First and foremost, directions kind of get you to hole 3. To find hole 1 from there proved very difficult and it would be much appreciated if better turn by turn directions were provided.
Hole distances were off, additionally there were 3-4 pin locations per hole. Many 60' apart...it was very difficult to determine distance especially with all the ups and downs. Better signage and information on where the pin is set (at the tee box) is needed. Asside from that...distances appeared to be quite off on a number of holes.
No bridge access from 2-3 and to get to long #5 tee. That leaves you balancing across river rocks.
I was unclear on some of the OB.
A number of the pin locations were 5-10' from where Tall grass appears to be in the summer. If all those pin locations are necessary, give a decent putting area around them.
it looks like #10 is new or getting a make over. To make that sharp of a turn ESPECIALLY from the long, that tree in the center will need some pretty high up limbing. If not you will have a really nice hole that everyone will score a 3 on with no spread. Also on the transition path from 9-10 trees were cut 4" off the ground, dangerous trip hazard. Either cut 3' or flush to earth. never that height.
#12 That cafe area at the bottom of the hill probably needs netting. Throwing that far downhill, I had an overstable disc turn over and scream into that area. A very dangerous situation if people were outside.
No tee pads at the moment makes it really hard in the muddy uneven ground to throw as far as some of the holes require.
Other Thoughts: I reviewed as if it were a sunny summer day not dreary winter. Review would go up with concrete tee pads.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Great work in progress
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: •Front 9 are beginner friendly holes
•Around campus, so all of the holes are well groomed
•Great use of the landscape
Cons: •The first time to the course can be difficult to find your way around the course.
•Natural tee pads :/
UPDATE 5-26-2016: Rubber mats are installed for Gold tees, and there is one rubber mat (hole 6) for the white tees.
•Hole 2 intermediate tee pad is directly along the walkway for students. There is a lot of foot traffic and at times it can be a struggle waiting for clearance to throw.
•Walking to hole 3 intermediate tee requires going underneath the ARC building and crossing a small creek. There is currently no bridge or anything to get across, so you have to be careful walking over loose rocks.
•After hole 6, you have to walk across the road, though a parking lot, and up a hill to get to hole 7. During the day, there is a lot of traffic on campus, so be careful crossing the road
•Hole 10 intermediate tee pad has a lot of roots in the ground, so a full run-up is difficult to say the least.
Other Thoughts: This summer they have been working on converting the 9 hole course into a full 18. The baskets and tee signs for the beginner and intermediate levels are all installed, but the pro signs are currently just wooden sticks marking where the signs will eventually be placed. UPDATE 5-26-2016: All signs are now installed. Hole 10 needs a lot of work. They are working on installing a retaining wall for the pro tee pad. Hopefully when they finish that, they can dig up all the roots where the intermediate tee pad is. Right now it's too easy to trip or sprain an ankle attempting a full run-up. Other than that, the rest of the course is in great shape to host the 2015 World Championships. UPDATE 5-26-2016: A retaining wall is in progress for hole 10 white tee. I really enjoy how they incorporated the woods on the outskirts of campus for holes 15-17. It almost makes you forget you're at a university. Also, you can definitely tell how the course was designed to be beginner friendly on the front 9, and much more difficult on the back 9. And with the front 6 right in the middle of campus, it is designed to teach new students how the game is played without becoming discouraged.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
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