The Arnold Palmer Signature Course
Stonewall Resort - Not Your Grandfather's State Park
By Brian Weis
I admit, the phrase "state park golf" generally does not inspire me. When I hear those words, I envision a tired course with poor conditions accented with rustic hole signs coated with layers of chipping brown paint. My stereotype completely vanished the moment I pulled onto the property at the Stonewall Resort. In complete shock, I uttered, "this is not your Grandfather's state park."
The Arnold Palmer Signature Course is a 7,149-yard thrill ride through the rolling terrain of North Central West Virginia. Perched high above the property the first tee provides a "wow factor" that will have you reaching for your camera. While the panoramic views of Stonewall Jackson Lake are stunning, the pristine conditions, jaw dropping elevation changes and demanding shots needed to tackle the course will form your lasting impression.
Before my round, I asked Randy Hernly, Head Golf Professional, for his favorite hole. Without hesitation he said, "take your pick."
After a long pause and some deep thought, he shared the following:
Hole #7 - "I love this hole and how it sets up from my game," beamed Hearnly.
I realized on the tee, Randy must be a long ball hitter with a draw. The monstrous par 5 offers generous landing areas guarded by a lateral hazard running the length of the right side. The second shot is demanding as the fairway narrows bending to the left. The approach must be precise as you climb to an elevated humpbacked green. Three good swings will be needed to reach this 580-yard beast in regulation.
Hole #14 - "Number 14 proves you do not have to have 400 yards to have a great par 4. Big hitters will be fooled with thoughts of driving the green. Put the driver away and attack the hole with a well-placed tee shot leaving around 100 yards. If you are going to birdie this hole it will be with your putter not your driver," shared Hearnly.
Hole #17 - Arnold Palmer has deemed this hole in his top 18 holes ever built. The fairway rapidly slopes downhill to a marshy ball swallowing grave. To get a clear look at the green for your second shot favor the right side to avoid a petrified tree protruding from the wetlands. Rumor has it Palmer and the management debated heavily on whether to leave or remove the tree, 10 years later it still stands.
Recent Award and Accolades
Golf Digest - 2012 Best West Virginia Golf Courses #8
Golfweek - 2012 Best Courses You Can Play - #2 in West Virginia
Golf Styles - Must Play Courses, May 2011
Golfweek - 2011 Best Courses You Can Play - #2 in West Virginia
Rolex World's - Top 1000 Golf Courses. (2011)
Golf Magazine - Best Public Golf Courses in West Virginia 2010
Golf World - readers rank the course #22 among resort courses in the US, 2009 and 2010
Golfweek - America's Best - 2010 Top Resort Courses - #39
Golf Digest - 89th among America's top 100 public courses April 2009
PGA Professional's Guide to Travel - Favorite Hidden Gems 2008
Golf Digest - America's Best New Course - 2003 #2
Golf Magazine - Top Ten You Can Play - 2002 - #2
Winner of AAA Four Diamond Award 2004-2008
Food and Lodging
Stonewall Resort is West Virginia's only lakeside resort and has been awarded the prestigious AAA Four Diamond Award for the 8th year in a row.
The saltbox style cottages feature a vaulted ceiling with exposed cedar post and beam wood framing, stacked stone gas fireplace, hardwood floors, area rugs and Mission style rustic furniture. A French door opens out to a private deck with a gas grill and outdoor furniture overlooking Stonewall Jackson Lake or the surrounding woodland and the natural beauty of the resort park grounds.
The Adirondack Lodge
The Stonewall lodge features 198 lodge guest rooms that marry rustic elegance with modern pleasures. Every room has a magnificent view of either the Lake, the mountains or the golf course.
The resort features three unique restaurants offering seasonal menus. Stillwaters and TJ Muskies are located on the lower level of the resort and treat guests to scenic views of the lake and mountainsides with a choice of indoor or patio seating. Lightburn's is located inside the clubhouse, perched atop the resort property overlooking the spectacular Arnold Palmer Signature Golf Course.
5 Tee Boxes: 7149, 6726, 6227, 5821 and 5038 Yards
Back Tee Slope/Rating: 143/75.4
Weekend Rate: $99 ($89 if resort guest)
940 Resort Drive
Roanoke WV 26447
Revised: 05/31/2012 - Article Viewed 31,938 Times
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About: Brian Weis
Brian Weis is the Publisher of GolfTrips.com, a network of golf travel and directory sites including GolfWisconsin.com, GolfMichigan.com, ArizonaGolfer.com, GolfAlabama.com, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.
All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched GolfWisconsin.com. In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and GolfTrips.com was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like GolfTrips.com, GolfGuide.com and GolfPackages.com. It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.
On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.
Contact Brian Weis:
GolfTrips.com - Publisher and Golf Traveler