Fantastic Warm Up, or Warm Down
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Rays is a sweet little 9 holer that is a tremendous amount of fun! All the holes seem to be 300' or less and have a variety challenging shots. This course is in the same area as the SE course, so it has a similar feel with numerous oak trees on moderate rolling terrain.
Some of the tee pads from the old course remain, so it's possible to shoot from these to add some variety. The best example is Hole #1. It has two alternate tee pads - one is about 20' behind the first one, and makes the hole much more challenging. The 2nd alternate tee is about 30' right of the first two tees, and is another fairway entirely - a nasty little tunnel - and one of my favorite shots on the course!
Cons: It can be difficult at times to tell what basket you may be shooting at (there is no map), but they all have numbers on them, and are bright red.
A bit LHBH or forehand biased (3 of the holes anyway)
Other Thoughts: We played this one three times the day we visited, it was that enjoyable. It won't knock your socks off (concerning the creativity or challenge of most holes), but if you're in the mood for something light and fun - this should fit the bill.
I rate this course (Rays 9) a 3.0
I rate this (NW) course a 4
I rate the (SW) course a 3.5
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
Ray's 9 - In Honor of a Local Legend!
Ray's nine is a wonderfully creative nine hole course located between the NW &SE courses near the parking lot. Starting on what was once the first hole of the SE course, this course was designed using bits of the old courses as well as newly designed holes, capitalizing on the surrounding unused areas. Intended for the novice/intermediate player, this course brings enjoyment to all skill levels! Like the other two courses on site, this course challenges players through line accuracy and placement. Although this course is shorter on average than the others, it is the ideal place to learn, practice, or warm up on before hitting the others. The replay factor is high on this course due to being quick, fun, and well designed!
Like the other two courses, this course can to be difficult to navigate for first timers. There are several areas that have cement tee pads due to the old layouts but if you just be on the lookout for the red number on the tees you should be fine. The red baskets are a wonderful touch too, helping to navigate.
Other than a little navigational issues...not much. Super fun short course!
The local club at Ft. Steilacoom did a terrific job in honoring Raymond Seick. The beautiful custom red baskets with Ray's picture as well as the hole number on each face plate is a nice touch! I have had the privilege of meeting him multiple times over the years and must say that he truly is an amazing person. He has given over a quarter of a century to Ft. Steilacoom as the course pro, teaching and inspiring players from all walks of life about the game he loves. The fact he has a course named after him says a lot about the impact Ray has had in Pierce County as well as the state of Washington. I feel honored to have played this course and even more lucky to have met him!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Start here, play 45 holes
Pros: A great warm up 9 for the two big 18s on the same property. A great unintimidating course for beginners and skilled players alike. Great variation both right/left and up/down. The fairways and obstacles are clean and the course is built and maintained perfectly... Oh, and did I mention,... It starts and finishes at the beginning of two other professional level 18 hole courses?
Cons: Navigation could be easier.
Other Thoughts: Thinking of this as a little 'stand-alone' 9 hole course is a little like going to the Grand Canyon and looking at it from the car - This is a gorgeous and flexible 45 hole facility with the ability to send players from absolutely ANY skill level home having enjoyed this great game immensely. If you know anyone who plays in the area, hook up with them out there - a guide is a wonderful thing and with so much going on here, a Sherpa would be well advised.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
A Tribute Course
Pros: This is an incredibly good warm up course or beginner friendly course. You have obstacles and tougher holes like number three to let newer players know this game isn't easy but the course is short enough that it shouldn't discourage anyone from playing it. The lines are just fun enough that even seasoned players will have fun throwing here. Like a previous reviewer said this course starts out on one of the old layouts of the course (15 different layouts at one point, not making that up either) and you can even see old signs pointing you in the wrong direction towards tee pads that don't excist anymore. Luckily it's not too though to find your way around here, the baskets for this course are all painted red and have a picture of Ray Seick on the number plate along with the hole number. Also on each of the real tee pads (more on this later) it has a little red number indicating which hole you are on. This course is in between the NW and SE layouts and starts right next to the gravel parking lot on the side in which you drove in.
Cons: There is still confusion here but it's not quite as it used to be at FSP. Problem is with all of those different layouts they used to have they still have concrete tee pads randomly throughout. The easy way to know if you are playing the right tee either on this course or another is that the tee pads with no tee sign or little red number are no longer a part of the course here so if you find one of those you've gone the wrong way.
Other Thoughts: I'm glad that whomever is in charge here has decided to make a few great courses instead of the crazy different safari layouts that they had before. Tee signs and next tee signs are in here and a few more in some tricky places would be even better. Put some yellow tape on the basket in the direction of the next hole, that is a simple and effective way of leading people in the right direction on top of everything else. I don't think I've ever seen navigation overkill before. This piece of property is slowly becoming the destination resort for DG that it has (mistakenly) been known for in the past. It's good to see all of the hard work put in here and I can see myself more and more making the trek down from Seattle to play it.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
9 Helpful / 0 Not
Great Tribute To A Nice Man!
Pros: The Ray's Nine course starts right where the original 18 started but at the amateur tee. The baskets are painted red and feature a picture of Ray. They're in sight from every concrete tee pad except # 8. This is just a straight forward amateur course. Most of the holes are on the shorter side, playing around 200 feet making it a great warm up course for the two other more challenging courses on site here.
The course utilizes some of the pads from the other course so don't be alarmed when players will veer off from this course and head off in other directions.
Cons: There aren't any signs up yet. Hopefully, they will be forthcoming. The course is fairly intuitive to follow but I did help a couple of newbies navigate it. Once you've played it, navigation is simple the second time around.
Other Thoughts: I've seen a few holes, benches and baskets honoring players at various courses around the country but I must say, the folks here at Ft. Steilacoom have really done an outstanding job of paying tribute to Raymond Seick. Ray has volunteered almost 30 years of his life to this disc golf complex including personally mowing the entire acreage with a push mower in his younger years. Entire generations of disc golfers have benefitted from Ray's tireless work and dedication. He is truly deserving of this honor.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 2 Not
Great 9-hole warm up.
Pros: Same starting point as the former Amateur layout. Great easy to see red baskets, and I love the respect and dedication shown to Raymond Seick with his portrait on each one. The layout is organized with fairways well separated, and minimal walking from basket to the next tee. You can see every basket from the teepads, or on the short walk to the teepad, so you know where to throw.
Cons: No signs at tees like on the Northwest and Southeast courses, but hopefully that will be coming soon.
Other Thoughts: Without signs to direct players to the correct next tee, old habits/laziness take over and you sometimes have to deal with "roamers" not playing the course as laid out.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful.
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