Even a Blind Squirrel Finds a Nut in the Valley!
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Valley Course is set on the Blind Squirrel Brewery property about a mile from the Mountain Course on the Campground and once again provides some absolutely majestic views of the Grandfather area of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This course consists of 9 or 10 or 18 holes depending on how you go about playing here. Mostly playing open and flat except for hole 8 and 9. Open may be a deceiving term because there is some fairway shaping due to the North Toe River and Christmas trees with tall grass lining the fairways.
The beauty surrounding the course is somewhat reminiscent of Black Jack and Hole 9 (which says 16 on the tee sign) would be the signature hole here playing around 60' downhill although not quite a top of the world shot it does comes with a sweet view and lots of fun!
Mix of rubber and natural tee pads with some tee signage. Modified InStep baskets catch well. Navigation was fairly intuitive. Short putt-putt style course. Onsite amenity laden brewery with bar, sit down table, restrooms, TVs, disc golf gear, good food and beer!
Cons: Single tees and basket basket positions. Potential to lose discs especially if you throw back a couple brews before playing. No real wooded holes.
Signage isn't that great especially on the short putt-putt side of the course(IMO should be two separates courses on the Valley). Hole 8 had no tee sign or markings other than some worn out grass from what looked like where people were teeing from. I got confused climbing up to hole 9 and seeing a 16 on the tee sign and wasn't exactly sure which basket to throw at.
Other Thoughts: I heard this described as the putter course so I only brought my putter and lost it on hole 2 in the middle of the fairway that had just been mowed, while I was searching the brewery owner's son helped me and actually found it, thank you! I actually went back to my vehicle after initially losing it to grab another putter and a driver because a couple holes are longer than I anticipated. Glad I did that and so then I had three discs to throw on hole 9, I'd throw my whole bag on hole 9 if I had brought it! (And I'd probably lose one or two doing that.)
When you combine the Valley and Mountain courses along with the brewery you get 4+ disc rated experience! I feel like there's still some more potential disc golf wise to be had here with some course modifications or additions.
Blind Squirrel was worth the effort it took to get here and play the course. I got lost since a bridge was taken out in the neighborhood, and there is no cell phone reception. I eventually found my way around the detour to the other bridge with another detour sign that you do have to enter through. Driving around through the neighborhood is beautiful.
I had a crazy day that started in Roanoke, VA, driving to Sugaree and playing 25 holes, then I got a nail in my tire and doubted I was going to make it to Blind Squirrel, but made it just in the nick time to finish both courses. The burger and IPA definitely helped quench my hunger and thirst after playing two mountain courses and was ready to take on the Valley Course! Good people, good food, good beer, good courses, they are nuts about beer and disc golf!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Not usually something you find beside a brewery
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Note: I consider this a nine hole course because the first nine are just putt-putt style holes. The back nine is a true nine holer in my opinion.
-This is technically the first course at Plumtree Brewery because it is right beside the Brewery. It's on the Christmas tree farm so it's much more different than the killer 18 hole course that is Plumtree Mountain. The average hole length is right under 270' on those nine holes so it's a little longer than Plumtree Mountain, but it effectively plays a bit shorter and that's because of only one hole.
-The baskets are marked with gray flags on the front nine and with gold flags on the back nine. I actually never found the tee pads for the first nine, but I didn't care since it's so short. I found the pads for the back nine, which is the real deal so that was good enough for me. Thing is, this course plays as two nine holers. For the final nine in the Plumtree tournament, we played the baskets marked with gold flags which is again, the back nine I guess.
-Has that true uniqueness that maybe 90% of nine holers seem to lack. The first hole is like 250' long but it forces a huge hyzer over the river and around a mando tree. This is one of those holes where I throw a justice or even a felon. Hole 2 is a long par 3 that plays around a long cluster of trees and onto a hanging basket pitched in a very slightly wooded area around some pine trees. The final hole is by far the most memorable.
Hole 9 is an amazing downhill bomb off of a mountain! It's a deceiving hole, it loses a lot of its footage but by the time you get to the bottom of the hill, it seems like a really long hole. It was my only bogey on the final nine (which I shot a 23 on) because I threw a putter and it faded a good bit to the right. The basket is beside a ditch and has a fair amount of rough around the fairway and green. If you love #14 at Black Jack (which you have to love), you'll love this hole too.
-The Brewery and Gift Shop is a great place to go to afterwards. It has discs, bags, and other good stuff like shirts. I gladly purchased a Plumtree long sleeve.
Cons: -If you play this as an 18 holer, you'll be sorely disappointed with the front nine. It's just not really an 18 hole course to me, even though it could be like it used to. If it was 18 holes, this course would be at least a 3.5, probably a 4.0. There is much more land to be used, once you are finished with #9 or what I guess is #18, it leaves you with a moderately long walk to the parking lot.
-The rough is quite rough in some places. It's mostly just when you have a mediocre shot but you could also land 15' in a christmas tree. In the final 9, which consisted of the top two Open players me and Joe Davis and top two Am players Jeff Flake and Barrett Caton, we all ended up in the christmas trees or the deep rough at least once.
-Finally, I think #8 is a weak hole, it's an uphill toss around 125', just needs to be lengthened I think because it would be even more uphill and longer, making it more legit.
-I don't live here.
Other Thoughts: -Let me just say Plumtree is paradise. It really is to me, it's deep in the mountains, has camping and lodging available for a reasonable price, it only cost me $20 to stay here for a weekend, so has everything a mountain man needs. There are some hotels I can't even stay in because I'm nineteen, and whenever I can stay in one, it's like $60 per night. So this place is a marked improvement. The owners asked if I was 21 or older and when I said no they were actually okay with it, so show plenty of respect here because they are very polite.
-As for this course, I'll safely say it's the best nine holer I have played. It's very well worth your time. The gold nine hole course starts off very pleasing so when I say the final hole is the best, that means it's a 10/10 hole. These are the courses where paying to play is nothing to complain about at all. It's well worth the price.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Everyday is Christmas at Plumtree Valley
Pros: You have heard of Elk Mountain, well... Plumtree Valley is a 2nd 18 hole course, close to Elk Mtn., and run by same people. The Valley course provides an easier alternative (or a relaxing break!) to the famed, but strenuous, Elk Mtn. course.
PV is flatter and more open. 13 holes are flat and only 5 are on the hill side (3 up, 2 down). Most of the holes' obstacles are the Christmas Trees, as this property is primarily a tree farm. (And believe me, those things will swallow up a disc and the trees are really close together in many spots.) Overall design was good as the holes had pretty good variety of length and shape.
Hole #1 plays right along the beautiful Toe River (your typical mountain stream). Throughout the course you are greeted with nice views of the mountains. Hole 13 is one of those memorable top-of-the-world shots where you will want to first just take in the scenery of the valley along the river between the mountains, and then you will want to throw several drives off the mountain and watch them sail down to the peninsula green at the bottom.
The lodge provides a good map and scorecard, however, navigation was good with plenty of clear signage, (they even used the generic discs that came with the Insteps baskets as signs- clever and adds a nice touch!) There is a growing proshop in the lodge that had a nice selection of several brands of discs. There is also a restaurant there that smelled great. I really appreciated the many nice and helpful workers, many of them play disc golf so they were able to give good advice. There are other outdoor activities available here too and lodging as well.
Cons: The Christmas tree farm eats discs- the trees are tall and so close together and the ground underneath cannot be mowed- it got to the point I was just throwing a putter 100' off the tee to avoid having to look for a disc as some fairways were only a few feet wide. In addition, the fairway grass was high in spots also making discs hard to find.
Some tees were grass, where others were lumpy mulch chips. The baskets were the In-Steps, they do the job, but they just don't make that satisfying sound other brands give.
Some danger spots if others were playing. Many places holes, baskets and tees, are close together. #13 is an awesome hole, but it is hard to control where a disc lands throwing 600' down a mountain, and there are a couple of tees and several baskets near #13's basket that could come under fire. (chances are, though, you will have this course to yourself.)
This course is on private land and there is a house and a garden and other personal objects here that should be treated with respect- because somebody lives here, the course has special rules that need to be followed, and there may be times where some holes or even the entire course might be deemed temporarily unavailable.
Other Thoughts: This is decent course, a nice complement to the strenuous and mountainous Elk Mtn course. The Plumtree Valley course is on the grounds adjacent to the lodge, and the famed Elk Mountain course is just down the road at the campground area. Check-in/paying is at the lodge to play either or both.
This course is not the reason you come to this area, but since Elk (and Sugaree) are in the middle of nowhere in the Carolina mountains, it is nice to have 1 more course here to make this long journey even more worthwhile.
It was $5 to play, however, if you purchase $10+ of disc golf merchandise, then you get to play for free. (essentially a $5 coupon of a disc!)
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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