The Hanging Disc Gardens of Coos Bay
Pros: I found Mingus to be a fun little course, with a number of uncommon elements that make this a memorable round.
Its only a short jaunt off 101, but several turns and a narrow dirt road access, as well as a surrounding neighborhood elevated above the park, provide few clues to its location.
The vegetation is interior coastal forest--tall, extremely full firs, with bunched ferns, moss, and mushrooms, with very little open space. The narrow valley and steep hillsides are naturally terraced by the endless winter rains and the clumping of vegetation, giving it an exotic, Tolkienesque air, as if you were treading the stairs of giants.
Lightwise, its incredibly shaded, necessitating a sunny mid-day for a visually reasonable round. The ferns and other pockets of dense undergrowth might provide some disc-hunting time for the unwary.
I did see a few walkers/dogs, and the park seems too small and consistently wet for partiers/homeless. A honeybucket was at the parking lot, though a 5-minute walk SE through the park will bring you to a public restroom and drinking fountain near the small lake.
This is the most challenging course between Newport and Brookings, though I'd consider Buffington a worthy stop, too.
Cons: With only 9 baskets, and the 10-18 tees barely different from the first 9, its better played as a 9er.
If its overcast/raining, it'll be too dim to play effectively, and the walks up/down will be very slippery.
The signage was minimal and the baskets unnumbered, but the throws are short and easily scouted.
No benches, but with the eternal damp, you probably wouldn't want to sit anyways.
Other Thoughts: Closest stores/eateries are south on Hwy 101. Winsor DGC is just a mile or two north and is longer and less occluded, but with more confusing routing and slightly duller play.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Mingus Can Be Treacherous!
Pros: The Mingus Park DGC is set on a steep, rugged hillside covered with large trees and lots of thick Oregon coastal rain forest type underbrush. Although short in distance, the elevation changes and tight fairways combined with the unforgiving undergrowth can make for a challenging day here.
The tee pads are small concrete ones. There are two pads for each hole essentially making this an 18 hole play. I didn't find the second pad changed the complexion of the hole all that much. The tee signs are simple, giving the hole #, distance and par. The double chain baskets are older but are in decent shape and catch well enough. They've been painted over in yellow once or twice.
A couple of holes stood out for me. # 6 has been mentioned before as being a sweet, little, very steep downhill. It's a touch shot. You'll be throwing a mid or your putter but the possibility of an ACE is right there waiting.
I thought # 4 was a pretty hole. It's a 220' flowing across the side pf the hillside. You don't want to hyzer left and be left trudging downhill to look for your disc.
Cons: There was no-one else on the course with me and I couldn't help but feel this course isn't played a lot. It just has that slightly uncomfortable feel to it.
I didn't see any evidence of any homeless activity.
The short distances here might put off some players while searching for discs might not please others.
Other Thoughts: At least, the stolen baskets have been replaced. There isn't much evidence that this course gets much love from the local disc community. It seems forgotten in this seemingly untouched corner of the park. If you're one who likes the feeling of being alone and one with nature, this just might be the perfect course for you.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Deep Pacific Rainforest
Pros: - Lots of elevation changes. This course is built on the side of a hill, and at least half of the holes feature minor to massive elevation differences.
- The dense forest means that accuracy is at a premium. I get the feeling that playing this course repeatedly would be a great way to boost your accuracy.
- Very uncrowded. This park seems surprisingly under-utilized.
Cons: - Wayward discs are extremely difficult to recover. We had a disc shank about 75 feet across the fairway, and it took us nearly 45 minutes to bushwhack our way across a ravine and find the disc even though one of us saw exactly where it landed.
- Spotters are needed to avoid losing discs on drives.
- Maintenance is lacking. There are two poles, and one of the baskets was broken and hanging loose. Some hole signs still exist, but many are in poor shape.
Other Thoughts: I would describe Mingus Park as a rough gem. It is fun and challenging to play, although the terrain makes things difficult or just flat-out annoying sometimes. With new tee signs and working baskets on all the holes, this could develop into a respectable course.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Disc Golf Hideaway
Pros: Set in a relatively unused forested corner of Mingus Park, this place is 'out there' and hidden away from other park users...and golfers apparently!
Variety - Both a pro and a con, Mingus has great variety in terms of right/left turning holes and a few holes with pretty extreme elevation changes and dangerous pin locations. However, it fails to solidify as a whole because of the uniformness of distances- almost all reachable with a putter.
Hole 6 - This memorable hole deserves special mention. Starting from a small concrete tee perched high on a hill, players through down a steeply dropping chute of trees to an inviting relatively unprotected basket far below. Easily reachable with a putter, this hole just begs for all the putters and mids in your bag. At the bottom, friendly trees surrounding the backside of the basket are ready and willing to make the plinko ace assist.
Cons: Other park users - This park is clearly a frequent hangout for local homeless folks and you will find mattresses, garbage piles, and even an old house foundation being used for a clubhouse of sorts. It does have an uneasy feel to it, so I wouldn't venture out there without a friend.
Challenge - This is a beginner type course with an "advanced" unmaintained rough that is just waiting to claim errant noob discs.
Dual tees - In most cases, the tees here fail to create much difference in terms of hole variety. It is nice to have a few of the extra tees, but a whole set of 9 seem a little overkill.
Other Thoughts: More funky and memorable than northern neighbor Winsor Park, Mingus just lacks a bit in upkeep and variety.
Getting there - If you are using a GPS, be prepared for lots of dead-ends and wrong turns because most of the access roads don't go through to the park. Make sure to consult the directions on the site and follow them to the letter.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
-tightly wooded fairways, but always had a decent line to hit.
-nice forest setting. in the middle of town, but feels like its in the cuts
-uncrowded on a beautiful thursday afternoon
-i didn't have much trouble finding errant throws because there were enough paths through the underbrush pre-trampled for your convenience
-#6. really fun hole.
-two sets of teepads per hole, making 18 holes. the teepads were all level and in good condition.
-good flow. once i found 1, i was able to get through easy, except 3. the teepad is right next to the parking lot opposite side of 1.
-short. i never pulled out a driver, and i don't throw very far. several times i had bad drives that hit trees, and i was still looking at an easy birdie
-2 wooden poles instead of baskets, and one badly vandalized basket (half of the chains broken) lots of trash.
-all fairways straight and short. shortest course i've played
-the tee pads could've been a bit bigger
-this is a nice casual course. i get the impression that this area gets lots of use from area "bad asses" at night, but saw no such traffic on my 6:00-7:30 visit. i think of all the courses i've played this one shows signs of vandalism the worst. the two missing baskets are a bummer, but don't let it deter you. this really is a beautiful course. for every piece of trash or graffiti there are 10 big healthy trees and ferns.
-some of the nicest people i've met have been on oregon DG courses. This guy walked with me out of his way about a half mile to show me where the course was. much respect from ca.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: It has a nice feel walking it. This is a secluded feeling with not very many people playing there. Really precise shots are requied as the poorly thrown ones will take a while to find. It takes a nice walk through nature.
Cons: Has two tone poles instead of baskets.
Can be kinda hard to find being in the middle of town and off the highway.
Other Thoughts: Its a really fun walk to check out. The better course compared to Winsor. The feeling there will bring you to nature.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
15 Helpful / 1 Not
Mini Mountain Golf
-Solid Tee pads (even for the Oregon Rainforest climate)
-Great course flow
-Tee signs for every tee pad
-Wonderful overall course design
-Challenging for skilled players
-Lots of excellent elevation changes
-Well defined fairways
-Never crowded (I've played probably here 30 times over the last few years, and only seen half a dozen other golfers!!!!).
-Very secluded feeling, even though it's in the middle of the city.
-Beautiful huge Doug Firs give old-growth forest vibe.
-Two tees for each basket. And each tee is individual enough to make the whole new again.
-Two baskets missing, tones installed on those holes.
-Vandalism of baskets is a regular occurence.
-Shrubbery can swallow discs during spring/summer/fall. Be careful on the downhill throws.
-As stated in previous review, there are some questionable people walking through the course at times.
I really enjoy playing at Mingus. It's funny when you drive to the center of town, and then walk into a seemingly old-growth forest to play DG, and don't see another soul the entire time.
The course has wonderful tee shots! Most all the holes are in the 240-260' range, but they aren't boring or simple. And the entire course plays along a fairly steep hill. Errant shots can be punished very badly, and you must take care with your upshots to land them softly as to avoid roll aways.
My main problems with the course are the baskets. There are 7 mach II baskets, and two tone poles. The other two baskets were there originally, but have been stolen over the years and not replaced. It's really unfortunate that the Coos Bay / North Bend DG community doesn't pay more attention to this course! With Windsor less than three miles away, no one seems to play Mingus and it is left for the vandals.
Personally I think that Mingus is a FAR superior course for skilled players than Windsor, but Windsor takes a lot less effort, and is much easier on the body (no hiking).
If the basket situation was remedied, I would give this course 3.5 stars.
P.S. There have been rumours floating around for the past few years about this course getting removed. It's still there, and I don't think there is any truth to those claims.
15 of 16 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Fun, short, and a little creepy...
Pros: Forces you to have many different shots, not just a big hyzer, plays through an old growth forest, but not so technical that you have to be lucky, two sets of tee pads for nine baskets
Cons: Creepy, seems like a place some weird people hang out (besides disc golfers), not all holes are baskets
Other Thoughts: This course doesn't take forever to play, like some
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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