3 Helpful / 0 Not
Other Thoughts: the front and back 18 in glacier are where i learned to play disc golf. the holes are all short and technical- leave your drivers in the car. if you are here for the first time, you will have a hard time finding all the holes, and many of the teepads are in the fairways of other holes, and many holes on the back 9 of the front 18 share targets with the front 9. the course is well designed given the terrain, but is not safe for large crowds, so don't bring them here. the teepads make a run-up impossible, but except for #16 on the back 18(which is nice and flat and you can run up), a standstill drive is all you need. and great accuracy! bonk a tree/overshoot on your drive and you can sail into the worst rough you've ever seen, on every hole.
these are not destination courses, but if you're here to ski and it's not raining, and you know someone who's familiar with the course, by all means come play a round!
BTW, the picture for "hole #1 tee" is not a hole at all. and the one that says "not hole 8" is from the tee of #8 looking back at the basket of #7 on the back 18.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
11 Helpful / 0 Not
Glacier DGC - Front 18
Located in Whatcom County, Glacier is a gateway community for the Mount Baker community and is the last outpost on the Mount Baker highway before entering the national forest. The community caters to summer hikers and river rafters, and winter skiers and snowboarders. While Glacier offers food and lodging, there is no gas available, so you will need to return to Maple Falls for fuel.
Nestled in a beautiful valley, Glacier DGC is located just inside the Mount Baker National Recreation Area, and north of the Mount Baker Wilderness Area. The community is about 24 miles west of the Mount Baker Ski Area, and about 32 miles east of the intersection of I-5 and State Route 542 in Bellingham. As other reviewers stated, this course is one of the more beautiful courses in the state. The course has players weaving in and out an old growth forest, incorporating several peaks and valleys with vibrant moss covered trees, massive ferns, winding creeks, and much more native growth making this course very dense.
Holes for the most part are around 200 feet with a few that reach closer to 250 feet. This course utilizes the landscape, creating tight fairway shots which require a great deal of accuracy in order to shoot for birdie. The front 18 at Glacier tends to be straighter forward than its counterpart in both navigation and pin placement. All holes can be reached with a midrange or putter off the tee. Tee pads are all natural and present little issue considering how short the holes are. Baskets are unique to the course and unlike any other I have played. The hula hoops with the netting make putting a challenge, with the baskets laying horizontal about three feet off the ground. A floating putt will prove much more beneficial compared to a turbo or spin putt.
Favorite Hole/s: hole #5 and hole #17
Although navigation is easier on the front 18, it is still a major problem for first timers playing here. Without the help of the locals my first time, I would have found myself wandering through this densely populated forest in search of the next tee pad at several points during my round. Because Glacier DGC is on the outskirts of the Mount Baker Wilderness Area, getting lost would not be in anyone's best interest considering the area is bear country. Be on the lookout for small stone tee signs or pieces of wood on the ground that help players to locate the next tee pad.
Update as of 9/2/11: Hole #15 currently has no sign. Just walk to the right after holing out and throw from the base of the hill.
Course design is another issue on this course. Most holes, as I mentioned earlier, tend to share the same basket and/or fairway and can be chaotic if the course is crowded.
Most holes are straight on or have a slight RHBH hyzer so some holes may feel a bit repetative. The back 18 seems to do a much better job in this aspect, allowing for a more balanced course. This course also lacks much variation when it comes to distance and therefore is most suitable for the intermediate player. However, there are plenty of unique lines to the basket that make it fun and yet challenging for all skill levels.
Last, this course is seasonal. Because Glacier DGC is so far north, this course becomes unplayable due to the harsh conditions including extremely muddy and wet conditions as well as deep snow during the colder, wetter months. This course is best to play during the spring, summer, and early fall.
When I played this course in 2008 I felt a connection with it right away! The remoteness and tranquility of Glacier made me realize why I fell in love with disc golf in the first place...because I loved to explore the great outdoors as I did as a kid. There was that sense of freedom we all desire to find as we get older. It was very comforting.
Two of the more memorable holes on this course for me were at the beginning and the very end (holes #1 and #18) due to the fact that players were throwing over a ravine from one high point to the next. It forces players to throw around or through some of the largest and most interesting trees on the course, challenging a player's precision and guts. It is the perfect way to start and finish a round.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful.
10 Helpful / 0 Not
Truly a Walk in the Woods
Pros: The biggest pro for this course (and the nearby 'back' course) is the natural beauty of the mountain valley that the town and park reside in. On a clear day, the drive to the course yields fabulous views of the nearby mountains including Baker and Shuksan. The courses likewise have a natural beauty that is impossible to ignore. Moss covered trees, babbling brooks, wooded hillsides full of deep green pines, and dark, chilly valleys are all out here. As you enter from the small walking trail to the first tee, you'll immediatly notice the unique putting targets which all consist of hula hoops with thick netting attached - surprisingly, these things catch perfectly without any holes or problems; you'll even get used to the satisfying but perhaps not as thrilling swoosh (instead of the usual ching!). Nearly all of the holes can be birdied with a putter either because they are under ~250' or because they lose enough elevation to make players club down a bit. While you won't find variety in terms of distance, you'll throw uphill/downhill, soft hyzer/turnovers, and even a couple of short trick shots off the tee.
Cons: As the previous reviewer stated, navigation can be a bit tricky, especially on the back nine where you double up on many baskets but head off for some completely unique holes as well. Most tees are visible from the previous basket, so when in doubt take a look down somewhere near the pin for the black or white rock marking the tee. Everything is numbered correctly (not so for a couple of holes on the back) on the front side and so you'll always know if you are headed in the right direction. The other primary con of this course is the lack of balance for right- and left-turning shots. You'll almost always be throwing straight or with a touch of RHBH turnover with only a few hyzers mixed in. Secondly, you won't find much variety in terms of distance with nearly every hole within range of a putter or short midrange. Several holes are quite tight, but very experienced players will not find too much to challenge them here or on the back course. The teeing areas are as natural as it gets and often do not allow for long runups, BUT you really shouldn't need to run up on most holes and it does serve to make for some good stand and deliver practice.
Other Thoughts: The courses here are quite enjoyable to play, but as the previous reviewer stated, you'll find most of the charm of playing here in the natural beauty of the area. While the front course appears to be rather busy most weekends, you are more likely to find solitude on the lesser visited backside which takes a bit of a walk to get to and is a little more challenging. This isn't a destination set of courses, but it is a 'destination' for a really enjoyable day or weekend spent disc golfing in combination with skiing/snowboarding in the winter or hiking in the summer!
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The Glacier DGC is located just outside of the small community of 100 or so in the tiny town that is used mostly as a pit stop for skiers and snow boarders heading to Mt. Baker. Once you park on the dirt road and make your way up the trail you will find hole one. You will notice right away the funky hula hoop targets that are both interesting and fun. After hearing for years about this secret hula hoop course I was expecting the hoops to be hung from trees or something vertically but in fact the hoops are horizontal, held up by sticks and have netting tied to them to catch putts. Putting is the hardest thing about this course as you have to drop your putts in, my friend playing with me was using an upside down putt that was working very well for him. The other interesting thing is the moss covered trees, the wilderness and downright beauty of the course, some might say it's one of if not the prettiest course in all of Washington State. The majority of the holes here are under 250 feet with many being a straight shot or left to right ending shot that involves many many trees and bushes guarding the way to the target, as well as the excellent pin location that brings the many hills into play during your short approaches and putts. The fun factor is very high here, I had a really good time with the combination of the fun course, the beauty, the wilderness, the funky targets and of course the wonderful company, I plan on going back again this year.
Cons: This course is a little better to navigate then the other course on site but still navigation was not easy. A lot of the tee pads are right next to the last hole but some are walks through the forest and trying to find the little rocks with painted on numbers or tiny sticks with the number carved into them was a little tricky. Some of the trails are a little slick and rugged and when combined with the terrain (elevation) change there is danger for hurting one self and in some of areas this course takes you it could be bad to be injured. Also there is a ton of wildlife and all sorts of animals that call this place home and I believe that includes black bears so that is another reason to not play this course alone. I found the hula hoop baskets fun, I love stuff like that but some of you out there may not feel this way. The tee pads are little short and some of them have fallen logs or roots in them but the course is short enough it shouldn't affect yours throws too much.
Other Thoughts: This place is a long way from nothing but that is what I love about it; that and the beauty of the course and the wonderful views of the mountains. I especially love that you will not find trash or vandalism or anything of that nature that you find in a city park. If you stop in at the ranger station you can find some good information about the area including hiking trails, also the ski/snow board shop in town has a small collection of Discraft discs and they will even give you directions to the disc golf course. The sandwich shop next door (can't remember the name) to the ski place has some great cheap food and huge cookies! I had been hearing rumors about this course for many years and am glad I finally got the chance to check it out. It's perfect for a nice little getaway from the city life for a few hours.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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