9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The NSRA Disc Golf Course is a diamond in the rough. That should only be taken half literally, as I didn't find any diamonds, but plenty of rough. Hole 1 immediately punches you in the gut with a long bomb across a field and into a stand of trees, but then the course settles down for a while with some doable holes for the average golfer (me). There's a lot of variation in distance, right and left turning shots, and creative use of the land it is on. It isn't very "technical" in a forested sense (Lake Stevens, NAD, Pier, etc), but there's plenty of elevation, briars, and wind to make you want to stay on the fairway. I didn't much care for the "art" baskets (what's left of them), but they at least add character to the course. The run down "historical buildings" add even more character. Taking a shot from the loft of the barn on 18 is a must to round out the experience, but you didn't hear that from me. You aren't supposed to enter the buildings, but if you choose to do so that isn't my concern. This has to be the most scenic course I have played thus far, and somehow the sun came out while we were there, which added even more to the beauty.
Cons: This could be an incredible, highly rated course, but it is not maintained. At all. I played there in the middle of the winter, so I can't speak to the mowing (or lack thereof), but the teepads were atrocious (my favorite word to describe teepads), and the "art" baskets were in terrible condition. Holes 5 and 12 still look like the ones pictured on this site, but the other four homemade ones were absolutely awful. I'd rather throw at a pole that used to have a basket on it (i.e. Twin Rivers) than throw at some of these piles of junk. I'm not being facetious. They're literally piles of junk. The teepads consist of gravel dumped in front of an old fence post or something, and most of them were full of mud and water. Not only that, but they were incredibly uneven, which is just terrible if you expect me to play a 500+ foot hole anywhere close to par. Again, I can't speak to the overgrowth, but if grounds maintenance is neglected like the rest of the course is then I really can't see playing some of these holes even with a spotter (like 13). Finally? The wind was whipping in our faces as we played through the back end of the course. This is kind of a pro for me because I don't get much practice on windy courses, but it's kind of a con for the same reason. The longest hole on the course was right into a fierce headwind with a nasty teepad to boot...
Upon hearing that they had held a sanctioned tournament here, I returned to the course. I assumed that they would have the course in tip top shape for such an event. Apparently the PDGA doesn't care if a course has nice teepads and baskets that catch. While I give kudos for a full 18 with real baskets, I saw more chainouts here than any other course I've played. Chainouts usually equate to cheap equipment. And the teepads are still disastrous, dangerous, and downright stupid.
Other Thoughts: All in all the experience at NSRA was a good one. It's a fun course that will challenge any level of player (not recommended for beginners), and the views are breathtaking. You're going to find yourself using every shot that you usually use, and I threw at least one that I hadn't thrown in a very long time. The makeshift baskets are going to be a con to a lot of people like the ones at Lake Stevens, and they've obviously fallen upon hard times. I appreciate the character that they add to the course, but (just like Lake Stevens) I hate watching my score go up just because a great upshot lands a foot behind the basket. Lack of course maintenance cripples the rating that I can give this place. Bottom line is that this is a good experience, but I can't give it "destination" status if they aren't going to take care of it. If you're passing through, stop in. Bring extra discs you might not mind losing and a spotter (depending on the time of year), but stop in and enjoy a challenging round of disc golf on a course that could become pro caliber with some hard work and a lot of determination...
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Good, fun course
Pros: - A good variety of length to the holes
- Art baskets are cool, though can be a bit annoying to putt on. (Would have been better to use these as alt baskets)
- Covers a lot of distance around the area.
- Farmhouse next to hole 2 is pretty cool.
- A few nice basket placements in the trees
- Wind makes the holes much more difficult.
- Signs to get to the next tee.
- Fresh blackberries!
Cons: - A number of the holes (probably 4 or 5) are just pretty straight shots with not a lot in terms of obstacles. This was hands down my biggest issue.
- No hole maps at tee (not a huge deal)
- Blackberry bushes get annoying to find disc in, though you should just treat them like hazards.
- Not enough variety in holes: elevation, dogleg direction, obstacles, etc
Other Thoughts: I played here with 4 newbies and 2 of us experienced guys. We all had a great time, despite some of the holes being pretty long for the first-timers. Those of us wearing shorts ended up with a lot of cuts on our legs from blackberries, and we had to spend a bit of time looking for discs, but all in all, it's the kind of course that gets new people hooked on playing.
Hole 14 was a very memorable hole, as were the few basket placements in the trees. I'd come back.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Beautiful Scenery, Wide open fields, Art Targets, Nice Laid out course. Nice mix of Long, Medium, and short holes. Few holes with elevation change ( throwing off ridge, over hill etc)
Friendly Locals, and plenty of chances bump shoulders with wild life.
Cons: Grooming! Depending on the time of year you can be wading through 4' tall hay fields if you fall off the fairway. Not enough trash cans although having more doesn't always stop people from being pigs. Art Targets they are good and bad... but I am more of a traditionalist I would like to seek real baskets and maybe have the art be an alt basket.
Other Thoughts: This is an awesome course that covers the area of an old farm. I ran across large garter snakes, Elk tracks and plenty of chipmunks, Squirrels and other birds. I really enjoyed playing this course. I will be the first to tell you to play it safe on this course and play the course not make the course play to you. I lost some very nice champ plastic on this course. You win some and loose some.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course is on old farm land and the buildings from that are still around to make it a one of a kind disc golf destination. The views of the mountains and the wildlife make it worth the drive by itself. An excellent mix of shorter technical holes with huge fairway drives perfect for the longest of throwers. I have played here many times and rarely have I ran into other people playing the course. There are several epic holes here with only a couple of duds.
Cons: With all of the good there is as much bad which keeps my rating below 4. The grass gets really really tall and the sticker bushes are on alot of the holes which make this course a disc eater. There are not a lot of signs directing you to the next basket and it can be frustrating for a first timer. The tee pads are just horrible, they are gravel but some are sloped up hill or short or some other flaw. It's a really long walk and there is not a lot of places to sit down at.
Other Thoughts: This course has the potential to be a 4-5 star course with some of the cons I have mentioned being taken care of. Bring some food and water with you because it takes a while to play and there is no shade so playing during summer it gets hot very fast. Still this is a worth while place to play and I recommend checking it out at least once.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Next Time, Summertime
Pros: The pros include the usual suspects, good parking, easy to find, a porta potty. NSRA is set on a unique piece of land. One of the best things about playing disc golf is being able to explore a off the grid places. NSRA fits that bill perfectly with it old barns rolling hills and Washington overgrowth, mixed with open and mostly vacant lots. There are a handful of shots on this course that standout in my mind. The holes that are lacking in creative shots are either long or have an art target to keep things interesting.
From the creek, the mountains, to the old farm buildings, the view in every direction was amazing. The pictures back me up. Number fifteen is one of my favorite holes in WA, with the basket perched on top of a hill maybe 300 feet away, throw it short and the blackberry monster eats it. I liked the tree window across a street on fourteen. The basket placement on seven and seventeen's fairway, and eighteen's tee-box.
Cons: Being out in the open invited the wind into the round, and it drastically drained the fun factor. For non Washingtonians who may not know, berry vines are a horrible place to lose a disc. The number four basket is in front of a hillside covered in them, which makes for a scary approach shot. I fell in the mud along the hillside on number six and was given multiple painful vine scratches on my rear. I threw into berry vines on number twelve and I reached in to retrieve my disc and it found barbwire, and no joke, the barbwire was no match for the vines. The long holes were boring, perhaps it was the wind, but I felt like I was just chucking out in a cow pasture. The group I was with dogged those art targets so bad, and I understand the need to ring them off chains, there no substitute, no matter how cool the target is. (Which they are). The tee box situation is lacking here, cement would be great, when I played they were mostly just big puddles that I teed off from the side of.
Other Thoughts: What does NSRA mean? Anyone? This course is long so bring water, maybe have a picnic in the back. I go back and forth with my grade here. There are some great shots here with some good pin placements and unique tee box looks. Then, there are cow pasture holes. The mud, the wind, the rain had my pants weighted down and the course gave me about twenty blackberry vine cuts. In the end I graded it like I did feeling optimistic that the course will do noting but improve.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
A World Of Potental Here!
Pros: There is ample space here. Big armed throwers (350' plus) will really like it. There's open range, woods, elevation and lots of blackberry bushes. It was really well marked in October making it easy to follow for the most part. The 6 ART baskets lend a fanciful touch to the course. The teepads are currently dirt but there are wooden forms lying next to most of them so I think something is happening in that regard. My favorite hole was # 15. I think it was called Finnigans Gully. A 322' shot across a gully to a basket semi-protected by trees. And finally, my favorite feature of this course! Each basket has a large number sign welded to the top, visible from 350 feet. Why doesn't everyone do that?
Cons: There are three, I think, teepads in which you release on the uphill. Please level these out when installing the new ones. No-one likes teeing off on the uphill. I completely skipped # 16. Playing by myself, I felt the risk-reward of losing or spending a lot of time searching for my disc wasn't worth it on this blackberry surrounded fairway. About the ART baskets-Normally I don't really care for gimmicky baskets..see Lake Stevens review. But for the most part, these were cute and clever. However, I can in the future see this as a tournament level course and I don't see serious tournament players wanting to compete on these baskets.
Other Thoughts: This course will be changing it's face in the future. New teepads are going in. The county has dug hundreds of holes for planting native trees (cedars, firs, hemlocks) and on the day I played, county workers were busy spraying the blackberries. Yeah, kill the bastards, I say! Kill the blackberries not the county workers. Five years from now, this course should have a whole new look and feel to it.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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