Gypsy Hill: Autumn Golf in the Shenandoah Valley

Gypsy Hill: Autumn Golf in the Shenandoah Valley 1
10th hole at Gypsy Hill, looking from the green to the tee.

SINCE ABOUT A YEAR AGO, I’ve lived in Staunton, Virginia, in the Shenandoah Valley. What golf I do play, I play mostly at Gypsy Hill, Staunton’s city golf course. It’s located in Gypsy Hill Park.

Gypsy Hill was built in 1919, when America’s first golf boom was underway. The routing and contour make it pretty apparent it’s a very old course, fashioned during the era of hickory clubs and early dimpled golf balls.

I’ve been on a lot of golf courses in my life, and Gypsy Hill is easily the hilliest course I’ve played. The yardage is short on the scorecard — under 6,000 yards with a par of 71 — but it plays much longer. There are many blind and uphill approach shots for which I must add two clubs, sometimes more. The greens vary but tend to be small and sloping.

Gypsy Hill: Autumn Golf in the Shenandoah Valley 2
6th hole at Gypsy Hill.

Similar to what Ben Hogan once said about the Olympic Club in San Francisco, Gypsy Hill is the longest short course I’ve ever played. It can be deceptively hard, especially if you stray from the tight fairways.

I was out playing Gypsy Hill on Monday with my brother. That’s when I snapped a few pics with my phone.

The colors were still gorgeous, but the leaves will be gone soon.

Photo of author
Neil Sagebiel

4 thoughts on “Gypsy Hill: Autumn Golf in the Shenandoah Valley”

  1. Thx for the pictures and description. Fall can be a stunning time to play – and we've had a beautiful fall in Minnesota. One other challenge at least here, is the difficulty of finding balls because of all the leaves on the ground IS this an issue in Virginia?

  2. Hey Neil Sagebiel
    I am a newbie in golf. I look at these golf course images. I have not never seen these golf courses. But this gipsy hill golf course amazed me. I have a question for you. when you played in these golf courses, what are you feeling about these golf courses from other courses?


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