5 Helpful / 0 Not
Well worth the stop
Pros: This is a great example of how a good course is made better by the environment around it. The course plays through a small but well maintained park, and the grass was so nice I even found myself throwing a roller or two. The front nine of the course is more open, and easier, but it is the back nine that really makes this course. It is more technical and there are more interesting holes. The course seems easy, but the wind coming off of the Columbia Gorge seriously changes the difficulty. The course enjoys majestic views and the area surrounding this course is worth the trip in and of itself
Cons: The signage was pretty bad and the course maps didn't really seem to accurately represent scale, layout or which direction the hole itself plays. Add on some really confusing and downright baffling course layout, and it really became a mess to navigate. If the wind wasn't kicking (and it almost always is), I probably would have found it a little too easy
Other Thoughts: If you are passing through the Gorge, take the time and stop here. The course was fun to play and was groomed well enough that you could play barefoot in the well-defined fairways. The course is dotted with beautiful trees, and they are worked into course layout in some imaginative ways that make short holes a lot more fun and dynamic. Don't underestimate what the wind will do to your score! Also, there are literally hundreds of waterfalls throughout the gorge, and they are worth taking an entire extra day to explore.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Prettiest Course You've Never Seen!
Pros: Shady Oaks has a classical, traditional golf course beauty to it. It's doesn't have the breath taking vista views like Whistler's Bend or Tree Top DGC at Sorosis Park in The Dalles. It's set in nice sized city park. I like the way the city has layed out this park right next to and thus connected to the post office, the town hall, some retail stores and the surrounding homes. The views of the mountains, both north and south are lovely to look up at. The park's gently rolling terrain, mature Oak trees and pockets of nasty rough provide a wonderful setting for a course. The maintenance and care for both the course and the park are evident everywhere. The baskets are Mach 5's. The natural teepads are currently in great shape except for one on the other side of the tunnel. There are tee signs on wooden posts but three in particular are very close to each other and therefore, a little confusing. These signs are on 4" x 4" poles and have the hole number on the side and a metal plate on top with an arrow pointing to the hole. I think this course would appeal to everyone from newbies on up to top tournament players.
Cons: The flow of the course is a little out of sync. I followed someone's advice on the course home page and played it in his recommended order:
Playing it in this order seemed to make sense. I would like to see the locals reconfigure the signs to follow this order. The wind is ever present here and adds to the challenge. Holes 3-6 in the other part of the park don't measure up to the ones in the main part of the park.
Other Thoughts: After playing the first 12 holes, I was thinking to myself how much I was enjoying this course and if it wasn't for the gorge winds, I probably have to put this course into my favorites. Then I came to # 13. An absolutely classic disc golf hole. Just a simple little (maybe 250 ft.) downhill shot through a natural fairway with a dogleg left at the end to a basket tucked away behind some trees. Thick rough lies just 20 feet left of the basket. Not a spectacular hole but more like disc golf's version of one of Augusta National's elegantly, beautiful holes.
Then I played # 14. Another classic hole. A little longer than # 13 with a slightly raised teepad throwing over a small valley to a peekaboo basket tucked nice in behind a small knoll. This lovely course has knolls. There is one majestic Oak tree dead center in your flight path.
Then came # 15. Another classic. You're throwing to another peek-a-boo basket tucked in behind two large Oaks. Some low hanging branches on the left eliminate being able to hyser in your floater. There is some serious rough directly behind the basket here.
And finally you finish with # 18. This is a very pretty finishing hole. Just a straight 250' shot to a basket guarded by some Oaks and a rock outcropping in front. Another classic.
After playing these lovely holes on the back nine, I've decided that this is my favorite course in Washington. Before some of you get all excited, Note that I said that this is MY favorite course, not the best course in the state. I realize that it's lack of length and overall challenge will keep many players from rating it higher. But for me, an aged recreational player with a weak arm, this course is as good as it gets! How I wish I lived closer.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Shady Oaks in North Bonneville is a beautiful 18 hole disc golf course located directly off Highway 14 near mile marker 37. The course is located in City Park between the post office and city hall. Tee one can be located near the volleyball court and gazebo along the walking path. The course terrain has gentle rolling hills throughout, and is completely grass with blackberry bushes scattered along the sides of fairways periodically. Massive Oaks and other native foliage tower along the fairways, making the course nice and shady during those hotter summer months. The scenery at this course is breathtaking! Due to its remote location near the Columbia River Gorge, everything is plush green. The mountains which surround the course trap the clouds within the valley early in the morning, and slowly creep out as the sun burns them off, giving the course a mystical feeling.
The design of the course is very well thought out, especially with the land they had provided for them. Holes vary in length, ranging from 198-424 feet, with the majority of holes having tight fairways. There are however several holes that are wide open, but still have some sort of obstacle in the way near the pin. Pin placement was well thought out, and the Mach 5 baskets they have in place are in great shape and are well taken care of. For being installed in 2006, Shady Oaks seems much newer than that due to how well maintained this course is. It offers a lot of challenge to all amateur levels, but would still be a lot of fun to play on for a pro.
Navigation around the course is somewhat confusing, so bringing a map is essential for first timers. There are wooden posts indicating what tee your on, but with so many sticking out of the ground about two feet up, it isn't always completely obvious which one you go to next. Holes # 3-6 are located on the other side of the park which takes away from the course flow. Although I did enjoy these holes, they were completely soaked with standing water, making those four holes a bit of a chore. NOTE: Make sure you look on the wall of city hall after putting out on pin #2 to see where to go regarding hole #3, as it is located under the bridge to the left.
Tee pads are natural and work for now, but eventually they will continue to erode, leaving large muddy divots. It would be great to see some rubber mats put down, as they are not permanent, and could be relocated at any time. It would make for much better footing during those rainy months, which happen more often than not in the northwest!
Last, holes #10-12 were quite close to one another, which made crossing fairways quite easy, especially if the course was crowded. I enjoyed these holes, but felt that on a busy day they would be quite dangerous considering they are the longest holes on the course and yet they have some of the tightest fairways.
Shady Oaks Course in North Bonneville is only about 40 minutes from Portland, and well worth the drive. When the courses are busy during those beautiful sunny days in Portland, this course is the perfect place to get away from the heat and the crowds. This course is quite technical at times and focuses on accuracy rather that power for the most part, rewarding players with multiple birdie opportunities if you show control in your game by hitting the lines given. Well worth a stop!
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Shady Oaks is a nice little park in the small town of North Bonneville near the Columbia River and main freeway. The park plays through many oak trees which will provide challenge and shade on a sunny summer day; I guess that's how they thought up the name. A variety of open and technical holes are provided as well as hole distances. The designers did an excellent job of using all available land at their disposal. This course is best suited towards Novice and Intermediate players looking for a good challenge.
Cons: The land was used very well but it ended up making flow not live up to the very definition of the word and added to the confusion that was already created by the lack of signage and walks between holes. Also because of limited space and using lots of land there are some fairways that play dangerously close to other fairways and tee pads.
Other Thoughts: This was an enjoyable course but please bring a map with you to avoid frustration. Also if you are using map quest please bring the local directions that is listed on the course info. If you do end up getting lost ask someone and ask for directions to the post office as it's right next to where the course is located and shares the same parking lot.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 1 Not
Nice mellow course
Pros: Easy to find. Beautiful setting. Well laid out in available space. A few good drives and lightly wooded areas.
Cons: Mediocre signage, but layout pretty self evident. Most drives were pretty short.
Other Thoughts: Not a very challenging course, but it was very pleasant. If you're in the area, this is worth visiting.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
Not worth the drive from portland
Pros: Scenery and wildlife are the big draw here saw about 3-5 Bald Eagles during our round.
Good opportunities for a low round with many birdie opps and a few ace looks. Locals seem friendly and able to give direction on a rather confusing course. Baskets look brand new and the grounds are very well kept. gas station close by with supplies
Cons: surrounded by homes and buildings, ie. post office, city hall, library etc. gorge winds can play a huge factor even on close range shots. not many garbage or recycling bins
Other Thoughts: This course was not what i had in mind when i thought of a course in the gorge. I have been playing for a few years now and did not feel a real challenge other than the wind. If you have a day to burn discin', maybe hit up this course and a few others along the 84, but this 18 plays quick and might leave you wanting more
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Secret Spot, shhh!
Pros: I'll rank this an excellent course, for the added bonus of the surrounding scenery----the Columbia Gorge, the different vegetation/birds, etc, the much better weather found here at N. Bonneville is so worth the 40 minute drive from P-town, not to add the 0 crowds. This course is great for beginners/middlers. Advanced may find it a bit short. Nice mix of straight drives, dog-legs, blind approaches. No hazards, really. Again....no crowds, upgraded weather from P-town.
Cons: My friend KC Don showed me this place, I've come with him since. I get lost/confused easily, so it takes some insight to figure out the layout. Must be a map somewhere, take it with. I think the T's were either not there. However, since it's in the dryer area, they were OK, not muddy pits. Ibe toilet at the first tee, so plan it out. Drinking water midway through.
Other Thoughts: What a neat place---right in the middle of a village!!! Houses for sale, reasonably priced. I've wondered about going in on one, use it as a vacation/destination....ah, well, I'm sorta scared to drive the Gorge in the winter. Some local gent put this course together: "Who was that masked man, I wanted to thank him". Thanx, whoever you are. Well done!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 2 Not
Great course for practice!
Pros: 1) It actually is a full 18 pin course. There is an area separated by a street (pins 3 - 6) that feels disconnected with the rest of the course, but all 18 pins were up when I played.
2) The course does a great deal with little to work with. The design is good and maximizes the space to provide a true 18 pin experience. It's not one of your longer courses, and certainly there are quite a few ace holes (if you can actually control your disc), but it feels and plays longer than it should.
3) The setting is epic. Nestled right in the Columbia River Gorge, the views are spectacular! On the day I played there were clouds flowing down out of the mountains like billowing rivers.
4) It's only 35 minutes or so from Portland, which means that it's just far enough to be off of everyone's radar. I didn't have to wait at a single tee.
5) There is little chance of losing your disc. That being said, I found a lost disc in the river/creek that I wouldn't have expected to come into play.
6) Errant throws are not punished too harshly. You can let the cannons loose and not worry that a wild drive will screw you from at least a bogey.
7) Signage for the most part is good, but it's always wise to bring a map.
Cons: 1) The pins 3 - 6 were far enough from the body of the course that it wiped out any sort of flow for the front 9. Also, these fairways were soaked with standing water from a rainstorm from a couple of days ago. There isn't great drainage on this stretch.
2) There was no tee sign or obvious tee pad for pin #3. I ended up just choosing a spot and throwing...
3) ...except when I waited 10 minutes for the little girl on her bike to get out of the way. This is a pedestrian park, very much so, and it doesn't seem like the locals know much about the hurt that flying pieces of plastic can cause (I couldn't be mad however, she was just waiting for her mom and I'm sure I looked menacing).
4) No concrete tee pads! I never realized how much of my drive is reliant upon the dimensions of a concrete tee pad. I never felt like I could get a good rip off the tee. Also, on wet days these pads probably turn to mud.
5) The layout is somewhat confusing. Finding the basket for #10 was disorienting (but I really liked the hole once I started playing the correct basket). This course is packed into a park that isn't actually that large, and consequently there are areas where crossover occur. This could be a problem if the course is busy, but I suspect this is still too much of a hidden gem to ever get overly crowded.
6) The tee pads for pins #9 and #10 are right next to each other. Leave your stuff after your throw on #9 because you're coming right back.
7) There is a definite lack of elevation, but not all courses need it. You make due with what you've got, and it seems they've got a little wind to compensate.
Other Thoughts: I really enjoyed this course, so much so that I'll probably be back. This is great practice for the technical game, as many birdie opportunities are available if you can just hit that line. It's a nice round of golf that teaches control through reward for great shots, as opposed to punishment for errant ones.
Concrete tees would help immensely, but the fact that an 18 pin course even exists out there is impressive enough. I will probably make the drive back out, but not on a wet day.
10 of 12 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 10 Not
Best 9 hole yet.
Pros: Good long drives with a few dog legs and actual fairways. Well maintained course and ruffs off into the bushes. In the middle of a small town, quiet and friendly. Trails on the outside of the fairways.
Cons: Not a 18
Other Thoughts: Could make it a 12 hole with available space but, not required.
3 of 13 people found this review helpful.
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