I was taken behind the Woodshed, and I survived!
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Woodshed is an elite-level course. Sure, it's in the middle of nowhere, and it takes miles of winding, back roads to get there. But, oh man, is it worth the trip!
- As soon as I pulled onto the property, I could see this place is special. You immediately notice the large fields, hills, woods and two ponds. And in case you don't know where you are, you're greeted with a 'Welcome to Paw Paw' sign. The kicker, however, is the clubhouse in the barn. I'm sure plenty of post-round stories and drinks have been shared here.
- The course immediately starts off with a challenge. It's a 498-foot layout with a fairway that plays to the left of one pond and a basket that plays to the right of the second one. From there, it's a 484-foot, uphill shot on #2. Don't worry, it can't get any tougher.
- Oh wait. You're now in the woods. If your round is off to a slow start, there's no time to mope. This section of the course offers everything you'd expect from wooded holes. If you're accurate, you'll do ok. If not, you're at the mercy of tree Plinko to find out where your disc will stop. I had the mother of all fortunate bounces on #4. My disc was going to sail long and left, down the hill. Instead I hit a tree and end up with a 10-foot putt for a 3.
- There's a great mix of the wood and open holes. Just when you get sick of the woods, you can let out your frustrations, beginning on #7. This is a fun, wide-open, downhill par 3 approaching 600 feet. Two solid shots and a short putt later, I felt I earned my 3 here.
- The back 9 has more open holes in the field. On #17 & 18, the biggest obstacle might be your endurance after your rounds (or rounds, if you've already played Whippin' Post as well).
- #16 is a fun, shoot-the-gap hole in the woods. It's a slight dogleg left, 338-foot layout, with the road to the right. At the tee, you'll see a 'No Fishing from the Bridge' sign. You get to the basket, and there's a small foot bridge. A pleasant touch to an excellent hole.
- The course challenges all aspects of your game. Bad tee shots will kill your score, especially in the woods. You've got to make your putts, especially if you want to capitalize on solid tee and approach shots.
- The course also tests your patience and mental game. If you're not careful, you'll let one bad shot, or a bad hole, turn into multiple bad holes. More than almost any other course I've ever played, you must forget the prior hole - good or bad - as soon as you step on the next tee.
Cons: The only thing that really was bothersome, for both courses, was the amount of blind tee shots. After a while, it gets tiring walking the fairways to find the basket. The course is already grueling enough. On multiple occasions, I ended up just taking my chances, throwing a mid-range disc 200 feet or so straight down the fairway, hoping it was a smart shot placement.
- The wooded holes are tight at times. It can be frustrating for sure.
- Its a given, but it's worth stating the obvious. These courses are in the middle of nowhere, so come prepared with drinks, food, sunscreen, bug spray, etc. Also, don't forget your money to pay or you can be the sucker driving the winding roads back into town.
- Watch your steps throughout the round as you're walking up and down hills. Also, be careful of roots, stumps, snakes and anything else that could put a damper on a round.
Other Thoughts: Woodshed is a fantastic course. I've been wanting to play this course for years. It not only lived up to the hype, but it exceeded my expectations.
- Either one of these courses would be most region's signature course. Just think, the second-best course in Paw Paw, West Virginia (population 494) is probably better than the best course in your hometown.
- It was a pleasure meeting Spencer and hearing him talk about the course. This is clearly a passion-project for him. The thousands of hours of work he's put into the course over the past 15 years cannot be appreciated enough.
- As great as this course is, I feel it lacked a signature hole. I can make an argument that holes #1, 7, 9 or 10 were most memorable. Perhaps the fact the most memorable holes were all so early in the round might slightly hurt the course's reputation.
- Yes, there are two 18 hole courses here. I want to meet the person who came all the way here to only play one course and not the other. That said, it's hard to compare one course to the other when everyone is essentially playing one 36-hole loop.
- The course easily deserves a 4.5 rating. It's simply fantastic. Either one of these courses would be most region's signature course. The fact that they're on the same property is even better. Just think, the second-best course in Paw Paw, West Virginia (population 494) is probably better than the best course in your hometown.
- The Woodshed alone is worth the trip. Throw in Whippin' Post as well and this is a must-play destination for everyone in the region. I drove 6.5 hours, leaving Charlotte at 3:45 on a Saturday morning to get here. All told, I drove more than 900 miles, played other courses along I-81 just to get here. And, I'd do that again in a heartbeat.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 7 Not
Well worth braving the treacherous road in
Pros: Simply amazing! It's all there! I can't wait to play whippin post we ran out of time.
Cons: None worth mentioning.
Other Thoughts: Thanks to the owner for their work maintaining such a long private course your efforts are much appreciated.
0 of 7 people found this review helpful.
12 Helpful / 0 Not
Paw Paw rocks!
Pros: Fantastic natural beauty. The terrain rolls throughout a large West Virginia landscape that includes awesome vista views from hilltops to hikes through wooded trails with ravines and moss covered stones to clear ponds and a wild assortment of foliage. One of the reasons I took the trip here was to experience this beauty. This place exceeded my expectations. Truly fantastic.
Another reason for playing was the renowned reputation of the elite challenge this course represents. Again, this course exceeded expectations. Not only was it incredibly challenging, it was more fair than I expected. Tales of the "Gauntlet" and the long wooded holes had me skeptical because I've never been a fan of convoluted fairways. Yes, there are stretches of very long and very tight holes, but I was able to find lines consistently. Tight lines...but DEFINED lines. Thats all I ask for. These technical holes are complimented with a host of absolutely gorgeous open holes. Distance is your biggest obstacle. Wind will likely play a role here as well. Some of the pins are on sloped greens making fades and skips a factor.
The elevation is top shelf. There are several 400+ ft. drives from vistas that allow you to maximize distance and watch your disc sail for days. This elevation is relevant on pretty much every hole. In woods, you are not just dealing with density but upshots and slopes as well.
This course flows well. It pours you in and out of the woods all round long. You finish the front nine back near the barn. Always a fan of seperating the front and back nine at a central starting point.
Character. Vibe. Fun factor. Call it what you want, but this place "feels" great. I'm calling it the Paw Paw factor. It will last long after your gone.
Cons: Slim pickin's here. To find flaws I have to reach toward signage. The signage is old and tatered, when present. Plenty of the signs have been swept away with weather.
Some of the woodwork (bridges, benches...etc) are also showing age. Frankly, all the man made components are quite worn.
Other Thoughts: As soon as I pulled in, Gabby came out with her 2 dogs and greeted me with a smile. She provided a map and gave a detailed descrption of the course and the current settings. This was very much appreciated. Her yellow lab actually joined me on several holes through the round. Good stuff.
It should be noted, that even though I stand by the nice flow of this course, there are times multiple pins are in view. You will definitely need the map to ensure you are aiming at the proper pin.
All in all, I found this place exhilarating. It was extremely demanding yet giving at the same time. I read the reviews of everyone making it out to be a negative that this course was "in the middle of nowhere". That is one of the things I liked best about it. I drove over 12 hours, roundtrip, just to play...and it was well worth it. This is absolutely a destination course. I will be back.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 6 Not
One of the Best
Pros: This course has everything. Elevation change, beautiful scenery, amazing variety of shots and tons of risk-reward. This is a course that will test you mentally and physically. I have played all over the country, and I can name the courses on one hand (Warwick maybe) that would compare to the level of difficulty and experience that is disc golf at the Woodshed and it's counterpart, the Whippin Post. Camping is available on site but I strongly recommend calling ahead to ensure availability.
Cons: Not much around, so you need to plan ahead - bring coolers with food and water. These courses can be a harsh reality, so be mentally prepared!
Other Thoughts: This course is worth the travel no matter where you are coming from.
2 of 8 people found this review helpful.
18 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: The Woodshed is very challenging and fun. The $5 it costs to play is very much worth it. The property owners are great people.
-long open shots and tightly wooded shots
-great use of land and elevation
-risk/reward including 2 water hazards
-beautiful mountain scenery
-flags on the baskets help with locating and reading wind direction
-secluded and peaceful
-the woodshed doubles as a comfortable clubhouse
-5$ per person is a bargain
-soft ground for sleeping and walking barefoot
I saw more stars in the sky than I have ever seen before. It was amazing and I must have seen half a dozen shooting stars.
Cons: The road in is narrow and it seems like there cannot be a disc golf course back there. As stated previously, it is far from most places but I do recommend camping there. You do get 2 first class courses when you play the Whipping Post right next door.
-beginners may get frustrated
-tee signs aren't very good (bring a map and you will be fine)
-some overlap but it isn't too busy anyhow
Other Thoughts: My favorite hole was #1, nearly 500ft down a hill with a pond waiting for you near the basket. The pictures don't show how much foliage actually grows in.
Paw Paw is worth the trek. Bring your food, drinks, and camping gear!
18 of 19 people found this review helpful.
18 Helpful / 1 Not
Wild and wonderful -- just like West Virginia!
Pros: Absolutely fantastic variety of holes ranging from rolling hills, long fairways, water hazards, tight wooded passages, and insane left and right doglegs. The reviews aren't kidding when they say that some of the wooded passages are only a few feet apart! A great challenge!
Service is great, as Gabby will greet you with a smile and a much-needed map. The course dog, Scout, will also follow you and be your best pal while you're playing.
The actual woodshed is a really neat clubhouse with which to relax before and after golfing. A great place to crack open a cold beer or two and enjoy the scenery outside.
Another pro is that the course is completely separated from human civilization. For some, this may be unnerving, but I love it! 18 holes of fun!
Did I already mention I really like the water hazards?
Cons: Unless you're from Cumberland MD, it's most likely going to be quite a drive to arrive here. Could also be very difficult to get here in the Winter because of the treacherous WV roads.
The tees and signs could use some improvements and care. They're there, but barely!
The rough behind the pond on hole #1 is a disc eater! At least 50 feet of nothing but the most formidable briers and thorns.
The numerous trees on some holes will not be kind to DX or Pro-D discs. Try and use higher quality plastic if you're prone to hitting trees like I was at The Woodshed.
The course is pay to play, but it's hardly a con. It's worth the $5 -- but it's a fee nevertheless.
Other Thoughts: I've visited many areas in West Virginia and this place is one of the most beautiful! Out of all the disc golf courses I've played at, this is one of the few that does not feel like a park or recreation area -- it's pure wild! As such, it's a great place to relax and enjoy the game.
On the other hand, it's very difficult to play here. I shot an 80 and I was happy with that. The feeling of elation is indescribable for birdies and even pars on some of these holes! Don't let the formidable challenge drive you away; embrace it!
18 of 19 people found this review helpful.
29 Helpful / 1 Not
God Plays Disc Golf
Pros: The course itself is long, has intense wooded holes, fast greens, elevation, water, open bombs and a unique charm not found elsewhere. Every hole requires you to use your brain and your skill. Mental discipline is required here more so than anywhere else I've played. I found myself thinking of holes played miles away after I sadly left the course. What is very interesting is that every hole makes an impression. There are no filler holes. Also the course is balanced, once your getting fed up with trees your greeted with an open field with a huge precise drive needed. Once your ego is back to equilibrium, you are back in the woods being beaten again by Uncle Spencer. The splendid isolation of disc golf only countryside on top of a wild mountain. The rustic clubhouse with the sign in book with so many amazing anecdotes from so many pilgrims. The friendly hosts. I'm gushing.
Cons: Fairways cross one another at 8 & 9. Not many people on course so not really an issue. At times, if you listen real hard you can hear the trees whispering and laughing at you. The challenge may be too much for anyone with a fragile ego. Legendary Gauntlet Holes may beat up your discs. Playing here might ruin/spoil every experience you ever have playing DG for the rest of your life.
Other Thoughts: I recently went back to Paw after 5 years. I am a little bit better of a player now than I was back then. Unfortunately my opinion of this place has changed. Many of the tight gauntlet holes particularly 3,4,6,14,15 are just not really fair at all. I scored just as poorly on these as I did 5 yrs ago when I was a relative noob. This shows that luck is needed moreso than skill. If Spence would just swallow his pride and just thin out some of the trees, not an overall clearing just maybe thin it out a bit I would be able to in good conscience keep Paw Paw a 5 but I have to be honest as great as some of the holes are the abundance of trees in the fairway (not off the fairway) really spoil this place. The drive to this mecca is long and out of the way for anyone. The whole pilgrimmage and environment may have twisted my opinion. Nah, this course stands the test of time and technology. Play this course and it's twin sister and you won't regret the drive.
29 of 30 people found this review helpful.
22 Helpful / 2 Not
Worth the drive
Pros: Scenery - The course is located in the WV mountains on a beautiful tract of land with big views on many holes. The piece of land is gorgeous - rolling hills, steep ravines, thick woods & open areas. When I visited the grass was in two cuts: long & full of wildflowers and short around the fairways & greens
Challenge - The woodshed will test players of all abilities, especially those that can throw less than 500'. Mix of long bomber holes & super tight technical wooded holes
Upkeep - the land is in phenomenal condition and the hard work put into these courses is evident by the lack of underbrush & the great condition of the course
Character - this place is amazing - having two world class courses on the same tract, the barn/music venue, a pond to swim in/lose discs in, and killer camping spots
Not a par 3 course - there are legit par 4's and par 5's -- a score in the 60's is good and in the 50's is great
On private land!!!
Some awesome holes - #1, #10, #13 are all great
Cons: Far from anywhere, which becomes a pro once you've arrived
Not beginner friendly - as noted in the other reviews, this is a long & tough course & doesn't have shorter teepad options (on most holes)
Fairway trees: Holes 3 (gauntlet) & 6 have little/no fairway. The saying I heard several times was: "not saying it's fair, but there's a way"....this holds true for more holes on the whipping post, but definitely true on these holes. Get your forehand roller ready!
Other Thoughts: Woodshed is more open than the whipping post & caters more to big arms, with several two-able holes if you can throw 450'+.
Both courses are phenomenal & the setting just adds to the experience. These are definitely two of my favorites that I recommend to everyone. The courses are tough and can be mentally taxing - they can really beat you up - but at the end of the day when you wind down in a beautiful campsite & look up at the stars, the beauty of the place becomes more evident
22 of 24 people found this review helpful.
26 Helpful / 2 Not
It's Just A Matter Of Preference
Pros: Scenic West Virginia countryside.
A perfect piece of land for a course.
Awesome host and hostess-Spencer & Gabby.
On sight camping available.
Has hills and water hazards.
Three par 5's.
Six par 4's.
7675 total feet of disc golf course.
Will challenge top pros.
Combination of wooded versus open fields holes.
Cons: Paw Paw is a very long way from anywhere.
Tight wooded fairways are tough on the average player.
The ravines off the fairways are tougher on the average player.
The open field par 3's are long.
Three par 5's.
Six par 4's.
7675 total feet of disc golf course.
Other Thoughts: As the review title states, I have a very slight preference for the Whipping Post course. As mentioned in that review, I think the two courses here at Paw Paw are similiar in so many ways to the two Circle R courses in Texas. Both are privately owned by wonderful hosts. Both are ungodly long and difficult! Both will challenge the biggest arms. If you enjoyed Paw Paw, then by all means, make a road trip to the Texas hill country. LEGAL NOTICE: I received no financial consideration of any kind from the Circle R Ranch folks for these plugs.
26 of 28 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 12 Not
I'm a Whipping Post kinda guy
Pros: Your host and hostess. All the other pros I mentioned in my Whipping Post review.
Cons: The Gauntlet. Every time I play it, it's the same thing. Five guys step up to the tee, 5 guys throw a two finger roller. 5 guys walk to their lie, pick up, and throw another two finger roller. All 5 then walk to their lie again, and at least 4 of the 5 throw a two-finger roller. Sorry, but I rank this hole 36 out of 36.
Other Thoughts: You're in heaven here. My silliness about not liking the Gauntlet is MEANINGLESS in the overall picture that is Paw Paw. Welcome to Heaven. Look for me on the Whipping Post. I like it better than the Woodshed. Similar to liking a Lamborghini over a Ferrari.
6 of 18 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.