2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -Pier Park is a very challenging course built in a city park in North Portland's St. Johns Neighborhood. It is the only course in the city owned by Portland Parks and Recreation. Massive Douglas Firs envelop most every hole and make it a beautiful, challenging course. From the holes in the middle of the park, there are Douglas Firs in every direction as far as the eye can see. The dense Douglas Firs shade the course incredibly well. Never is it a worry about being too hot.
-It is very close to downtown Portland and therefore extremely popular and well-loved.
-The tee signs are great. They are full-color and show both pin placements. However there is no indication to which pin placement is in use at that particular time. There are PVC pipe bag holders on the tee sign post.
-Shout out to Next Adventure for being a major sponsor of this course. Check out their shop if you have a chance, on Grand and Stark. They have a wonderful selection of discs.
-There is a separate winter layout. Basically this is because holes 3 and 4 are a mud pit in winter. Many of the holes are the same in the winter however. The winter layout is: 1 and 2, 18 backwards, a temp hole, 17, another temp hole, 6-16, and another temp hole. I think all four of the winter-only holes were brilliantly designed, the last hole especially. It is 300 feet and tight, but straight downhill. If you don't have a big arm this is one of the only real birdie chances. I almost think the winter layout is more fun than the normal layout.
-You have to work for a good score on this course. The trees are so frequent you will inevitably get some bad bounces. Plus, there aren't very many short holes. All the holes are par 3, but I say +10 is a good goal.
-Some of the noteworthy holes are #2, a downhill forehand hyzer shot into a field, hole 6, a long downhill shot where you just have to pick a line and hope you hit it, and hole 15, where the basket taunts you 450 feet away between two narrow rows of trees.
-The Mach X baskets have been well loved, but they still catch as expected. The teepads are spacious and grippy. Trash cans are not very frequent, but people seem to do a good job of not littering.
-There is only a few patches of undergrowth. No serious blackberries or anything. The heavy foot traffic keeps the weeds out.
-To protect the trees especially vulnerable to tree hits, on some holes strips of wood have been fastened to the tree.
Cons: -If you are a novice player, this course is frustrating as hell. Precision is a must an most every hole. There are hardly any nice easy shots. Most every hole is over 300 feet through trees.
-The course can get very muddy in winter and dusty in summer/fall. Spring is the best time to play here.
-The course gets awfully crowded. Not a good place to squeeze in a quick round. I would plan for upwards of 2 hours to play on a nice day. At least players here do a good job of keeping group size to 4 or under.
-There are no good bathrooms on site in winter. There are some ancient, locked up shacks that once may have been bathrooms, but now they have ferns growing on whatever parts of the roof that hasn't fallen in. During the summer there are some Port-a-Johns.
-In a few instances, especially on #16, some trees have been planted recently. They're small, have low-hanging branches, and do more harm than hurt to the hole in my opinion. The course would be better off without them.
Other Thoughts: -This course is an absolute must play if you're in Portland. The trees make this course feel so surreal and peaceful. After a bad day there is nothing like a round at Pier Park to calm the nerves.
-There are some negatives about this course, but they are so small I can't take off more than a half-disc for them.
-Overall, this is an incredible course you can't pass up the chance to play if you have it.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
0 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: Nice variety of fairways (open, wooded/technical, straight, bent), multiple pin placements. It was fun to play this.
Most holes have good signs and benches.
Lots of parking.
Cons: Really crowded, even in the rain.
Some holes are pretty muddy in the fairways.
Too many people ignoring park rules, large groups, smoking.
Needs signs to help you get from hole to hole. If we didn't follow a couple who play the course often we would not have played them in order.
Other Thoughts: I look forward to playing this again, when the weather is better.
0 of 5 people found this review helpful.
You're gonna hit a tree
6 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.
6 of 7 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.
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