Very Difficult, but Fair
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -A heavily wooded course with a few open holes. That meanders upslope, downslope, elevated and highly elevated tees, water carries, and double water carries, straight uphill fairways, some holes play by and around a creek, rollers, death putts and a treacherous C1. Also a few holes border farm crops, and wind could be a factor on a handful of holes.
-Tee signs with hole number, distance, par, map with graphics, and elevation with +/- value!! First time I've seen it, and I would think when the Lions course has their tee signs it will be added as well.
-Tee Pads are a short turf some on raised platforms. More than half of the long and short tees are shared. I played long, except No. 14 when there was some interference with a fisherman.
-The course is very scenic! The first tee to 18 basket walking experience I would rank #2 behind the Lions course on the same property. Views of Lake Marshall, the Lions course across the water, in the woods foot bridges across a meandering creek.
-Ranks #3 in physical exertion behind Hawk Hollow, and The Lions which is #1.
-No 5. C1 Ranks #3 for a treacherous green behind Waller Mill long baskets # 8 and 9.
-No. 4 for holes at a 175-200-foot distance ranks no. 1 for a straight away hole with difficulty.
-For rollers and death putts I rank #2 behind Waller Mill.
-With the variety of a wooded course experience and difficulty I rank #1.
-My own personnel ranking for a favorite course, I rank The Lair #1 ahead of the Lions, and Hawk Hollow. All three have the highest fun factor. But the Lair is more doable than the Lions for my game, and that raises up the enjoyment factor for myself edging out Hawk Hollow.
-Excellent drainage, it had rained about an inch the day before, and I could hardly tell. Creeks had drained into the lake for the most part, and I was able to play out of the creek on 7.
-Like the Lions you may find solitude on the course. Only a twosome was on the course several holes behind me on a Saturday morning.
-Beginners and Recreational have a wonderful walk and enjoy the variety of woods golf. Intermediate and Advance will find themselves an elevated challenge at every hole.
Cons: -Like the Lions the fairways seemed high enough to only be mowed about every 4-6 weeks. There are only 3 fairways with full grass and were being mowed as I was playing.
-A few tee pads looked like they were aging for only being used for a few years. Same with the tee signs.
-High disc lost potential specifically the water carries on 14 and 15. Wayward shots elsewhere on the course involving heavy rough, and the rollers into the lake.
-There are some leg burners and panting going upslope, also need good balancing to cross foot bridges.
-On 14 and 15 water carries you could have interference with fisherman in their boats. I had to abandon the long tee on 14 and played the short.
Other Thoughts: The Lair has something waiting for you at every hole, and you must pay attention and not lull asleep. So many holes that are unique, that I could write a magazine article on them, whether its off the tee, in the fairway, around the basket, or a combination. I love playing a wooded course, and the Lair overloaded the senses. What few open holes are no slouches. I found the course very fair for my game, and only a few holes out of reach at this time. Some good memories lacing 1, parking 10, a fading lace skip on 13, and hitting the basket on 14. Even the approach from the creek on 7 was fun and will be memorable! I also threw a few duds. Very easy for me to call the Lair my favorite of my favorites! The Lair replaces the Lion, nothing wrong with the Lion, just at this time out of my reach, and could remain that way?
From tee 1 to basket 18 the Lair is a 5.0 and that's where my overall ranking stands. The time to play was 1 hour and 40 mins taking a few photos, and very little disc looking.
***The holes I selected to share with you, are the ones that made the greatest impression a few weeks after playing. It was difficult to choose.
-#2 elevated platform tee next to Lake Marshall is a straight away to the basket, and a blind tee shot. Water all the way down to the left and in front of C2, heavy trees to the right. There's a rise blocking your sight to a roller green.
-#8 raised platform over a water runoff collection from the creeks into the lake. There is heavy brush over the water, and foot bridges to get you across. Very scenic from the tee. After crossing water it's a 54-foot rise straight up hill to the basket.
Notable Basket Placement-
-#13 basket is placed on a 19th century horse and buggy loading dock for logs. The basket is a roller, and if not careful a roller all the way down to the lake.
-#1 Par 4 at 531 feet with an 18-foot elevation drop, don't let the number fool you, it drops more on the approach. Straight away from the tee almost to the basket. Heavy woods both sides and only about 25 feet wide, the fairway rises until about 200-feet from basket, then drops straight down slanting right, then back straight. There's a creek that crosses in front of tee with a foot bridge. Tee is on a raised platform, basket a roller into the lake. Very scenic hole can see Lion's course across the lake from basket.
-#4 Par 3 at 189 feet with a 12-foot elevation drop. Straight away from tee to basket clutter with trees. It will take skill with very narrow gaps, and heavy canopy. The basket is a roller straight downhill with guardian trees. I just stood there on the tee and saw nothing to reach the basket. Threw a putter up into the canopy, got about halfway there.
-#5 Par 3 at 251 feet with a 14-foot rise in elevation. Straight away from tee to basket heavy woods both sides with gaps as small as 15 feet. It's the putting circle's that makes this hole treacherous. At C2 both sides of a narrow fairway are mini ravines with humps from one ravine to another both sides. Only about 3-4 feet deep, but you're putting up to a basket that sits on a very narrow shelf, and three feet behind the basket is gully about 12 feet deep and a straight drop, the gully wraps around the sides of the basket area. Plenty of room to putt straight back up if you need too. Not really a death putt because there's a steep wooden staircase to get you down into the gully. Before the basket is a small landing area of about 15 feet wide, its marked by the end of a dead tree and a good landing spot whether from the tee or an approach. I wonder what the record is for putting on this hole.
-#7 Par 3 at 379 feet with a 38-foot elevation drop. From the open tee you're throwing into a 25-foot gap into heavy woods, the gap is about 150 feet out, and your disc will disappear into darkness. The fairway slants left to right at a 45-degree angle away from you. A creek runs all along the right side, the creek had solid dry sand bars with a few inches of water. The basket is mounted on rocks, the ground is raised with just a few feet level. It's a roller all the way around back into the creek or woods. Very scenic. Found my drive in the creek and played it, threw it up and rolled back into the creek. This was my fun hole, and favorite!
-#10 Par 3 at 283 feet with a 54-foot elevation drop! Straight away to the basket with a ton of trees in the way. The basket is in the open and a roller into the lake. This lefty saw a path high up into the canopy on the left and took it with a mid. Hit my mark, heard leaf splashing, thought I saw it hit the last tree, but didn't see it drop. Found my disc just 10 feet away and hit the putt. Fun! Didn't see much on the right side.
-#14 Par 3 at 276/210 with a 19-foot elevation drop. From the long pad straight away to the basket over the lake, need at least 260 feet to clear, and an open throw, has its own basket. The tee sign was at the short tee where the elevation is listed, the long would have been elevated less than 10 feet. The short is straight away to clear water at least 180 feet, there's guardian trees around the short basket, the angle has you throwing into the leaves. Both baskets roll back into the lake. It was my intention to throw from both tees, but a fisherman drifted into my line from the longs. From the shorts I hit the barrel of the basket.
-#17 Par 4 at 609 feet with only 2-foot rise. Straight away open tee to an open basket, sort of. On the left is an O.B. farmers field with a very bushy crop about 4 feet high, I wouldn't want to look for a disc in there. On the right heavy trees and bushes all the way down with canopy hanging over the fairway here and there. The fairway narrows as you get closer to the basket to about 40 feet wide. To get any height on the disc, you're going to be forced over the farmer's field. Behind the basket at 10 feet is a steep drop off with heavy trees and brush, I wouldn't want to look for a disc in there as well.
-#15 Par 4 at 571/455 feet with elevation drop of 23 feet that looked higher. It's a two water carry hole with the lake all along the right, the first carry you need at least 220 feet that has a lazy dogleg left from the tee towards heavy trees on the left. The first landing zone rollers into the lake, and has a DZ. The second carry is a partial water carry; the trees dominate the left so you might as well bring it over the water about 200 feet from the basket to make the carry. From the long tee there is a gap to hit off the tee that brings you over the water, the basket has some light guardian trees and has water on the right and behind. Very scenic hole from the tee!
-#16 Par 5 at 834/634 feet with an elevation rise of 28 feet and another number to con you. To about 150 feet from basket a rise of about 40 feet, then the fairway drops down to the basket, it's a roller behind the basket into the woods. From the long tee straight up hill as a lazy dogleg left to the basket with heavy woods each side, gaps as small as 25 feet all he way up to the rise except at the gully. The fairway opens at the gully that is about 100 feet across and about 10-15 feet deep. There are catch trees in and around the gully, but plenty of room to hit a gap. No matter your personnel distance each mistake will likely cost you a stroke, and anything into the woods you may do some disc looking. IMO this par 5 is more difficult than the Lions #18 par 5. Both gave me a beat down.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Future DGPT/Major Course
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: +Set on one of the most beautiful properties I've ever seen, The Lair is wild ride from start to finish.
+Has all the danger you'd want to get your blood flowing, while having pro and am tee pads that allow for 800-something rated goobers like me to have manageable challenges. (Where the pro tee pad has a 300-ft water carry, you have a 200-ft one, for example.)
+Uphill, downhill, water carries, water on the right or left or behind the pin, death putts, landing zones, etc etc etc...this course has it all.
+Innumerable signature holes. Holes 1, 9, 11, 14, 15, and 18 could all be *the* signature hole of most very good courses. Of the bunch, I think I'd choose 15, but I could easily be swayed to 11 or 18.
+Tee signs from pro pads are very informative (missing for am pads, unfortunately). Tee pads are artificial turf and were in good condition after a dry week. Some are thick carpet on raised platforms. Baskets are top-quality Prodigy targets.
+Situated on the same property as the unbelievable Lions course (played it but not rated due to it still being under construction in Oct 2020), and the 9-hole putt-and-pitch/warm-up Lambs course (did not play). Good warm up area with two baskets and one having numbered distance stones.
+Incredible course maintenance by the property owner and local crew. Truly a destination course that I felt privileged to play.
Cons: -No tee signs for holes with separate am pads (except for #14, IIRC). However, a number of holes share the same tee pad for both. Not a reason to lower from 5/5.
Other Thoughts: $15/person per day to play on the weekends (and holidays I assume), $10 on weekdays. Check first with the Lake Marshall Disc Golf FB page for availability - course is closed some weekends for tournaments or other reasons. You'll need to make a reservation at least a day in advanced (no tee time required as of Oct 2020).
This place is out there - nearby Montross, VA has some restaurants and services, but bring your own water and food for sure. Probably use the bathroom first before getting there. Also, unlike the Lions which loops past its parking a few times, the Lair is an 18-hole loop, so bring all water/food with you that you'll need for 18 holes.
Really a top-level course that I would not be surprised in the least to see on a DGPT or Major stop in the next few years.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
So much fun
5 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Hole 1 - 10/10 fantastic starting hole for any course. 500' wooded par 4 that finishes by the lake.
Hole 2 -9/10 unique hole by the water that seems open, but still demands a great line through a fairway midway through the hole.
Hole 3 - 6/10 fun/short and easy par 4..get a birdie here because it's about to get tough.
Hole 4 -6/10 initially I did not favor this hole, but it has grown on me and now the course would not be complete without it..190' tunnel
Hole 5 - 8/10 260' shot to a land island without OB, unique unlike any hole I have ever played
Hole 6 - 7/10 slight dogleg right par 3 with plenty of ceiling to shape a 310' shot through the woods.
Hole 7 -9/10 birdie here feels amazing. Start your tee shot off from a field, throw down into the darkness 380' on a ridge that finds the target perched onto a small boulder.
Hole 8 8.5/10 teeing off from the bottom of a valley across a creek and straight up a hill to a fair landing zone.
Throw your next show out of the woods into the edge of a field for a fun and memorable hole.
Hole 9 10/10 could be a sign hole at almost any course..but not here, a fantastic open field shot into a large oval shaped landing zone into the woods. Throw your next shot with finesse down a wide fairway to the target..in my top 3 par 4s I've ever played.
Hole10 8/10 choose wisely on this split fairway downhill par 3 that finishes by the lake. Approx 50' in elevation change.
Hole 11 10/10 magnificent 600' par 4 that follows the water the entire way, the lake wraps around the back of the basket, cant decide weather to take photos or tap in bogeys.
Hole 12 5/10 classic hyzer shot that you will find on many courses, get the 2 here it may be your last!
Hole 13 9/10 what a great use of the land..par 4 that follows the natural ridge all the way down the peninsula to the target perched atop an 1800s logging ramp.
Hole 14 9/10 again...get your video out and hit record.
Choose between a long tee or short tee 200' or 270' across the lake. Worth the walk around.
Hole 15 10/10 another top signature hole for this course. Throw your first shot smart to the first peninsula and throw your 2nd smart shot along the lake. 2nd option of bombing off the tee and going for the tee.my fav hole here
Hole 16 8/10 I dispise this hole..but luv it, a 850' wooded par 5 that bends slightly left the entire way..walk away with a 4 or 5 and you might give a fist pump. This hole can make or break you.
Hole 17 9/10 another fantastic 600' par 4..the farther your tee shot the tighter the fairway..this open hole feels as constrained as being in the woods. 2nd shot to target has the danger of a massive dropoff behind basket.
Hole 18 9.5/10 Almost perfect, what a great finishing hole to a grand course. Throwing your first shot strategically, then enjoy the fun of the 2nd shot across the valleys through the woods back out into the open.
Currently my #1 course in my list.
Cons: Tee pad on 8 is leaning a bit
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Robert Trent Jones of disc golf!!
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: This is by far the best of the best. Beautiful terrains.
Awesome flow through the woods and around the lake to an island.
This course was truly set up to challenge even the most hardened players.
I see this as a hopeful contestant to the World Championship site.
Cons: I live in Alaska so i only get to play there one time a year
Other Thoughts: I LIVE IN ALASKA AND I MAKE SURE TO PLAY THERE AT LEAST ONE TIME EVERY YEAR!!!!
JUST GO SEE IT. WORDS CANT EXPLAIN HOW AWESOME THIS COURSE IS!!!!!
CALL GARY TURTLE! HE LOVES THAT NAME;)
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
part of a DG mecca!
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Lake Marshall is a private DG mecca, the Lair is just one piece of it and it's wonderful. The land is terrific with views that remind me of Maple Hill several times throughout the course.
With plenty of elevation playing this course is a 'hike', rarely is there a flat hole. While being heavily wooded, the lines to hit are very fair even for an Adv Grand Master like myself who can't throw 300' anymore, in that aspect, it reminds me of Iron Hill in Delaware. While shorter than Iron it has more up and down. Navigation is helped out with plenty of next tee signs while the tee signs are informative. There isn't one bad or filler hole, each hole is a challenge in some way. The orange Prodigy baskets are easy to spot but not always from the tee due to length or elevation.
Hole 14 has 2 different options over water, pick your poison, 2 tees and 2 baskets depending on your choice. Hole 15 throws over water TWICE! In late Oct or early Nov these holes along with 11 are simply gorgeous.
Hole 16 is beast, you've been warned.
$10 pay to play is totally worth it, they accept Paypal.
Cons: While the tees aren't bad, some are built up on wooded platforms with carpet and/or artificial turf while others are gravel based. Cement pavers would be better yet I understand that on a course so new and a complex with so many holes that would be expensive and time consuming to build.
There are some short tees on the longer holes but I didn't know which ones until after I teed off from the long tees.
Other Thoughts: The pictures don't do the course justice, the elevation and beauty have to be seen in person.
I've driven over 4 hrs twice now in 3 years and look forward to returning next time, it's only going to get better.
Print a map from the Facebook page since the Files here aren't up to date yet. Udisc has been updated, see Lair long tees map.
Bring food/water/snacks/lunch with you since you won't want to leave this complex.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 3 Not
Fun fair challenging
Pros: Fantastic property!
Variety! Everything from a 190' par 3 to 900' par 5
Most FUN overall layout I have ever played.
Tee signs, directional arrows, and pads are now in place.
There are short tees on the more difficult holes.
There are trash baskets on most holes, no bag holders and some holes do not have a bench yet.
There is a kids/jr course on this property also, so bring the wife and kid and let them do the small course while you enjoy the big courses on the property.
I highly recommend making it out.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Prodigy baskets
Great design - every hole is planned and well designed for modern disc golf
course maps available on site
variety of shots, distances
there are waste baskets place throughout the course.
Porto john available.
it's beautiful out there.
Cons: as this is brand new, and still under construction so to speak,
tee pads are not yet poured, permanent
there are some tricky spots on the trail
Other Thoughts: I've played enough courses to recognize great golf. A lot of the old courses are made for recreation and old school disc chucking. This course is designed and built for modern standards, giving a great golf experience. Most holes have a presentation showing the player where each shot should lie to set up the next shot. This is how a good golf hole is done, and it is beautifully done on this course for a great disc golf experience.
There isn't a bad or uninteresting hole on the course!
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 1 Not
A Work in Progress...still.
Pros: Beautiful Property with elevation changes over, across and along creeks and a lake.
Many Tee Boxes have benches, several of those with trash cans which are obviously used, this is one of the cleanest courses I've visited.
A friendly non-player but involved landowner interested in improving the course(s).
Layout requires all your mental focus and most of your shots/disc selection.
Cons: No hole signs/maps.The only hole map on UDisc is NOT accurate to current layout. I'll address this issue further in Other Thoughts.
Course under improvement/repair. While playable, several fairways have been dug on or scraped but still lots of tripping hazards throughout the course. Holes 7 and 9 are getting new (multiple) Tee's. Hole 14 am basket was down. While these are only temporary concerns, there is a long hike from Tee to Basket on 14 and even longer on 15 which also required walking alongside the 16 fairway, a potential problem during tournament play.
Several old hole markers/signs still on course as well as extra baskets (laid over) throughout the course increase the confusion level.
UPDATE: 5/19/19 I have been informed all of these issues have been addressed. Go check it out and post a review!
Other Thoughts: While I am just as much a fan of Free to play courses as the next guy, this type of course ownership/involvement is what it is going to take to elevate the sport. The current fees here are $10 Mon-Fri., $15 Sat./Sun. for the whole day. Compared to movie prices for 2-3 hours, it's fair; compared to Ball Golf Greens fees, it's a deal.
The Landowner/staff are committed to making this a complete Disc Golf destination facility comparable to the PDGA Headquarters Complex near Augusta GA. This (The Lair or West Course) is the Intermediate/Advanced Level course. The Lion will be the Pro level course and The Lamb will be a Beginner/Pitch-n-Putt course.
Addressing the map issue. First, the kiosk does have paper maps of the course, updated as changes are made. Additionally, the Landowner informed me current maps are available in the Files section of their Facebook page, Lake Marshall Disc Golf. That being said, I encouraged him to get a correct UDisc map uploaded.
As an old fat guy, I'd rate this as a moderately strenuous course. There are several climbs into and out of gully's/creek beds; some of which the owner has added steps/stairs to help navigate. While it is possible to use a cart, I would find it more trouble than it was worth for casual play.
I recommend checking out this course whenever you're in the area. I'm looking forward to returning, I believe it could be the next Winthrop Gold, Idlewild, etc. level experience.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Virginia's next Championship level course
Pros: It's on a beautiful piece of private property with great elevation, a variety of shots, well designed, great flow, plays next a lake and it has a 2 basket putting green next to the parking area with markers going from 10ft to 60ft! This course is designed by John Biscoe who also designed Hawk Hollow and if your not familiar with HH then you are missing out! These are Championship level courses that are bucket list courses!!
-2 tees on most of the holes, maybe 1 on the shorter par 3's
-Orange Prodigy baskets on every hole
-private property/pay to play
-carpet tee pads
Cons: Since it is private property there isn't a maintenance/grounds crew working daily. So it would be a good idea to contact the property owner or someone affiliated with the course to get an update on the course condition. Its not quite complete yet. Still needs tee signs and signage for course navigation. There is course maps at the entrance but no maps/signs for each hole.
Other Thoughts: If you want to play this beautiful course at its tip top condition then I highly suggest registering for an event there!!! The crew responsible for this course will be working tirelessly to make sure you experience this course's full potential! This is 1 of 3 courses on this property and will be one of if not the best course in the state!!
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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