You're gonna hit a tree
4 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: Pier is an awesome park to play at!
-multiple pin locations that are switched pretty consistently
-summer course vs winter course, great that they move the baskets completely around (although it only changes 4 or so holes) still fun to have different placements for different times of year
-trash:recycle bins at every few holes
-bathrooms at beginning of course and in the middle of the course (in the middle of the whole park)
-very friendly park, discers and park goers alike
-lots of ways to approach your shot on every hole, almost always 3 or 4 different ways to throw (righty or lefty)
- pretty much every hole there are dozens of trees to play thru but oddly enough they're not too envaisive to where you can't get to the basket in one throw
- decent range of length to the holes, practically all holes are around 300ft with a few short ones
- 8 or so baskets you do have elevation change whether you're throwing down the hill or up and over or just up the hole time
The list can go on and on!
Cons: Not too many things wrong with this course
-can be over crowded with its popularity, with disc golfers and other park goers. Big groups will often times play here causing for back ups.
-Holes 7-10 can be a bit noisy since they're near the playground area so if you're shooting for a good score can be troublesome to focus
- can be confusing to play the first time at certain parts of the course. When they switch to winter course the signs don't necessarily match up correctly for what number hole the tee pad is.
Other Thoughts: Beautiful park. It's always a great feeling when you're playing the baskets thru the middle of the park and you can look up at the hundreds of feet high trees that are surrounding you and just stare at the sky with the branches in your view.
I'll always love playing this park. Always fun. Haven't come across anyone who has played disc golf in the Portland metro area that hasn't played here yet. It's a local iconic park here in Portland and I'm glad we have it.
Reason I didn't give this a 5 rating is because I would love to see multiple pads for baskets (always fun with even more variety!) and beaches of the over popularity causing slow play at times.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Great variety of shots using the trees and elevation changes. Nice baskets. Nice teepads and signage on each hole.
Great combination of beginner friendly (very hard to lose a disc, no hazards) and challenging for experienced players.
Gorgeous course. Can't emphasize that enough.
Cons: Two or three spots in the course where it's pretty tricky to find your way to the next tee... my group spend a few minutes wandering around looking for hole #10.
There was a line to get going on the first tee when we left, shortly before noon on a beautiful Saturday morning. Plenty of room to play earlier, though.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
crowded for a reason
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -huge trees and a lot of them with not much undergrowth. so you get to feel like youre in lord of the rings without losing all your discs.
-so many different shots
-great teepads, relatively level with surrounding dirt which kinda makes em bigger
-mach X baskets, doesnt get any better
Cons: only 2
- people, theyre everywhere, i mean its free, its right in stjohns, whatta ya gonna do, get there early
-no next tee markers could be tough for newbs
- i used to think the trees were a con. some holes just felt like a crapshoot to me the first dozen times i played here. but play a couple rounds with a group of pros, and you quickly realize EVERY hole has an "alley", and after watching the other four people in your group use said alley effortlessly you realize youve just been pouting/lost.
Other Thoughts: another plus for this beautiful course is the ability to jump around within it. being that its so crowded because its the go to "portland course" for what seems like EVERYONE, its nice that after hole 8 you have the option to go to hole 9, hole 12, or hole 15. when youre on hole 5 you can hop over to 16, etc etc. i realize most folks wanna play 1-18 in order and completely but when you just wannathrowthrowthrow and not worry about playing through or sitting and watching a group of five thats doesnt know what playing through is, its nice to have that optiion.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Still one of the top courses in Portland
2 Helpful / 0 Not
* Good signage at each tee, concrete tees, neon green baskets (a huge improvement) are easy to spot. Benches on most holes.
* Beautiful location - big trees, grassy fields, understory vegetation. Lots of shade for hot summer days. Most of the holes are in the trees, but #1, 2, 14-18 add more open space and keep it from getting too repetitive.
* Challenging for even the best players - there are a lot of trees on this course, and many of the holes are about choosing tiny windows, taking complicated gambles, and ending up with huge puts. You will want a wide variety of discs for this course.
* Nice variety of elevation changes and shot types. #5 is an up-and-over-the hill, then #6 has a nice long drop down - if you don't hit a tree.
* Out of bounds areas are not punishing. Few rocks or tall grass, no blackberries or poison oak. Low likelihood of lost discs.
* Free to play, parking on nearby streets is close enough. Friendly locals, even non-players.
* Restroom facilities are somewhat run down but usable.
* Park may be busy due to close proximity to the city and lack of a fee. Sometimes parts of the park may be closed for filming TV shows like Grimm, Portlandia, or Leverage.
* Dust/mud - because of the dense tree canopy the ground is mostly dirt and pine needles. Can get muddy in the winter, and dusty in the summer. Bring some wet wipes or hit the restroom to wash up when you're done.
* Map or guide is recommended for new players of this course. Path from basket to next tee can be difficult to discern or may be longer than you might expect.
* Good course for: Intermediate and advanced players looking for a lot of technical challenge, as opposed to the length and brutal out-of-bounds of the challenging Blue Lake. Beginner players who don't mind ending up way over par.
* Bad course for: People who don't like the thought of throwing a disc full speed into a tree (especially soft plastic types), or players looking for a lot of wide-open bomb shots. Total beginners will probably get frustrated here, especially without a map.
* King for a day: I would renovate the restrooms and put in those "next tee" markers at the bottom of the baskets like they have at Milo McIver.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Big teepads and mach x baskets
Good mix of distances
Tons of beautiful trees
Cons: Navigation was adequate but not perfect for first timers
Teepads got a little slick with the intermittent rain we experienced
Other Thoughts: Coming from Michigan, we were in awe at the size of the trees at Pier Park! My depth perception was certainly influenced by the massive vegetation and it took nearly half the course to acclimate. Although there were primarily abundantly wooded holes, I felt like there were multiple options off the tee on almost every hole. Usually on such wooded courses I find that i'm being forced to use mostly putters mid and fairway drivers, however, at pier park I was able to utilize distance drivers more often. There seemed to be more space throughout the lines of each hole than what appeared at first glance. Overall, my rating boosts what is probably a 4.0 course up to a 4.5 because of intangible factors such as mystical course vibe and it's unique canopy feel under massive trees. It's also very close to downtown Portland.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 9 Not
Pros: Extremely nice fairways. Nice, easy to see Mach X baskets. Easy to read hole signs. Map of course at number ones tee. Lots of elevation changes. Large concrete tees.
Cons: Distances were a little too long. Hole 8 is hard to find. It was raining and muddy when I played. Not really a con of the course just a con of Portland.
Other Thoughts: If you are more of an experienced player this a great course.
2 of 11 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 6 Not
Pros: Beautiful course with great upkeep. Challenging throws due to course design, not bad course upkeep. Requires you to use every disc in your bag and throw in your toolbox.
Cons: Some of tee pads were muddy. Nothing significant though.
Other Thoughts: Awesome course to play when passing through Portland. Doesn't take all day and is convenient.
1 of 7 people found this review helpful.
Beautiful park style course
1 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: First of all Peir park, you have no Peir. You must be named after someone called Peir, I guess that's fine too.
This is a seriously beautiful park, tons of tall for trees and rolling hills provide an urban oasis perfect for our sport.
It starts out with some more open shots near the small parking lot, around the softball fields and the you dive I I the woods to a series of technical holes.
There are upshots, downhill bombs, turnovers, places where you can use a good OH shot. If you have multiple suite types bring them you can use those shots.
I threw FH, BH, OH and even one roller of the tee due to the diversity of the holes.
Good signage with both basket locations shown which was quite helpful. Teepads were pretty good, slick today but it looks as though they have decent texture on an average day.
No serious bomber holes but several in the 400s to keep it interesting.
Tons of headroom for a wooded course too, if you need a line, just look up!
Also they have brand new Mark X DGa baskets with the neon green tops and baskets super easy to see and they catch well too. Plenty of seating on many holes as well.
Nice facilities here, several restrooms, tennis courts, playgrounds and ball fields. Great little community haven.
I had a good time here and if I lived in the area it would likely be a go to course for a quickish round.
I played a a nice pace and finished in less than an hour.
Cons: The layout is hard to follow on a few holes and its easy to get turned around if you haven't played there before.
No huge bomb holes but not taking points off for it, to layout is very diverse given the limited land and dealing with the fact that this is a multi use park.
Not much parking, I don't know if this is a normal issue but there was a cross country meet there today and I had to park way down the street. The only normal parking is in a small circle near hole one.
Other Thoughts: Overall this is a great neighborhood park, I had a great time and if I'd had the time might have played 2 or 3 rounds there.
It's got its cons but no major ones and I would defiantly play it again. The trees are truely special.
1 of 5 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: The course is beautiful. Tall evergreens provide great scenery and serve as worth obstacles. For me, the perfect wood concentration.
Cons: Can get a little crowded at times.
Other Thoughts: Loved this place. Our favorite course to date.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Fun Course with New Targets!
14 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Unique Beauty.
First and foremost, Pier Park is truly a one-of-a-kind experience. It has a unique personality that is unlike any other disc golf course. The towering firs provide an amazing shade covered backdrop for your disc golf experience. This is a must play course for visitors to Portland. I have had the pleasure of playing Pier Park numerous times on my visits to Portland. I have played short and long layouts in PDGA events and as a casual player.
NewTargets were installed in advance of the 2014 Pro Worlds. They have bright neon chain tops and are much easier to spot in the shady environment than the old targets. The park was clean and in excellent condition for Pro Worlds.
I used bullet points for those that don't want to read the entire review.
Not your ordinary park
Holes One and Two look like most any urban park in America. They are next to some soccer fields and baseball diamonds. However, once you take the walk to Hole 3 you get your first taste of the amazing beauty of Pier Park. This initial view of the third tee takes your breath away as you scramble for your camera. Only this view doesn't fit in the frame. The towering firs line the grassy fairway and create dappled lighting everywhere. And now the bright neon basket is easy to spot from the tee, even on a super gray day.
Easy to Play
While the course was used for the 2013 US Women's Championships and the 2014 Pro Worlds, don't let that scare you. It is fun and easy to play. Pier Park is a great place to take beginners. If they don't fall in love with disc golf here, they likely never will. There is very little underbrush, so it would be nearly impossible to lose a disc here. Even though there are not any super long holes, (like Milo and Blue Lake) Advanced players will still be challenged. Pier is a technical course where players need accuracy and a good putt to score well.
There are ample concrete tees on every hole. These are in great shape and are level with the surrounding area. Some of the tees had benches. Every tee sign post had hooks for holding bags off the ground just in case it is muddy. There were trashcans and recycle containers at several spots along the course.
Multiple Pin Placements
Variety is the spice of life. There are alternate pin locations for several holes. All locations are marked on the tee sign graphics. The shorter locations make the play fun for newer players. The longer placements will provide some challenge for advanced and pro level players. If you are playing the shorter layout, be sure to bring that putting game.
There are signs with great graphics on each tee. The signs include all the pin placements. The quality signs are mounted on wooden poles near each tee pad. Each sign pole also has hooks for holding bags off the ground (for when it is wet and muddy). There was also sponsor information on many of the signs. If you do visit a sponsor, be sure to let them know you saw the ad at Pier Park and thank them for supporting disc golf.
Kids and Strollers
Go ahead and bring the tots and strollers. It is a pretty compact course and is stroller friendly. There are a couple of hills to climb up and down, but it is not difficult terrain. There is a "splash pad" and a playground near the tee for Hole 8 as well. The restroom at the first tee was pretty scary. The restroom by the splash pad on Hole 8 was a little better. There is also a playground by the spashpad. There is also an outdoor pool at one end of the park.
Poison Oak and Ivy
As far as I could see you don't have to worry about Poison Oak or Poison Ivy in the park. There really isn't a lot of rough here.
Pier park is popular. Plan to play weekdays or early on weekends to avoid the largest crowds. Otherwise, there will likely be some waiting.
Even though it does offer a variety of shots and elevation changes, it eventually feels like you are playing the same hole over and over. Even for players that don't throw far, it comes down to missing trees and trying to make big putts. Even the alternate positions don't really change the fact you are still throwing through tall trees to targets.
Routing and Backtracking
Sometimes the next tee is not that easy to find as you walk past other tee areas on the way. There is a long walk from Hole 18 back to the parking area by hole One. You actually walk by the tees for holes 3, 2 and 1 on your way back to the parking area. Even if you were to park on the street by Hole 8, you will still have the long walk from 18 to 1. I am sure there are reasons for this and it doesn't appear to be easily fixed.
The restrooms at Hole 1 are pretty scary and the sink was not working on my last visit. The only other restroom is a short jog from Hole 8. It would be nice to have some more facilities as there really isn't a chance for privacy on the course.
Pier Park looks like the kind of place where fairies and pixies live among the moss and ferns. It is no wonder they film scenes from the TV series "Grimm" here. There are a couple of old buildings with moss growing on the roof. The dappled light shining through the trees creates and a really cool look during the day. However as a female, I would not feel super safe in parts of this park after dark, and not because of goblins or gnomes.
Portland is a disc golf destination and offers several must play courses for any serious disc golfers. If you only had time to play one course on a visit to Portland, choose Pier Park. While it is not a Championship level course with extra long Par 5 holes like Milo and Blue Lake it is pretty quick to play if there are not a lot of players. It is certainly the most popular course in Portland. Stop by and find out why. You will not be discappointed.
I had the pleasure of staying very close to Pier Park on Hayden Island at the Jantzen Beach Holiday Inn Express. I stayed here on two separate visits to Portland and was happy each time. The hotel is located on an island in the Columbia River between Portland and Vancouver, Washington. It has a pool and offered free hot breakfast. It is close by Pier Park and right down the river from Blue Lake. Except for some sucky rush hour traffic, it will provide easy access to all the courses around Portland. FYI, when the traffic sucks in Portland , it sucks real bad. I am from So Cal and thought it was excruciating.
Support the Sponsors
There are sponsors listed on the awesome tee signs. Please stop in and let them know where you found out about them. Thank them for supporting disc golf at Pier Park. I visited the Huk Lab store right down Lombard street from the park. They have an awesome selection of discs.
This must play course is filled with awesome beauty. There is a smart use of the elevation and hitting a line is more important than raw distance. In addition to the brand new bright green targets, I love all the extras such as bag holders on every hole, nice tee signs with up-to-date graphics. There are alternate placements and benches on many holes. Pier can be enjoyed by players of every skill level. This must play Portland course earns a 4.0 rating.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Join Disc Golf Course Review
for free to add your review. Have an account already? Sign In
to add a review.