5 Helpful / 0 Not
NSRA Aug 2015
Pros: Great use of topography and deteriorating buildings. Pin placement excellent. Concrete tee pads and all chain baskets are a tremendous upgrade. Holes are pretty long but have excellent landing zone.
Cons: Long 18 so bring all the supplies you'll need (doesn't loop back to car). Map we found "NSRA Frolf Coure" was not accurate. Stay on the fairway to avoid rough, drop offs, and blackberries.
Other Thoughts: The Northern State Recreation Area or "NSRA Frolf Course" ,as they state on the map we found online, is a great course. With a grassroots beginning there are several of the 'art baskets' still in place to go with upgrades to all chains baskets and concrete tee pads. With those changes it appears the layout has changed as the map we found was not accurate. With some elevation variations and treed alleys they take advantage of all the natural obstacles (and some unnatural with the deteriorating barns). Beware of the more open holes as the pin placement is often precariously close to drop offs or other hazards (oh, and blackberry bushes abound so stay on the mown fairways). The distances are on the long side but the landing areas are great for the most part. Knowing the layout and placements is a tremendous advantage as the 'rough' can be rough.
Some notes on the holes:
#1 : Pin placement in the trees, great set up.
#2: Tee pad hard to find but it is up to the left and you drive over trees and blackberries so be sure to get it over or be sure to where it landed.
#3: You get the first glimpse of the deteriorating barns.
#4: Slight up hill and wraps left following the barns, pin tucked in deep in the corner. Great hole. As you reach the plateau and look through the left hand alley of the barn roofs as it would be a stellar alternate hole.
#5: Shorter hole but be ware of going deep as it drops off dramatically past the pin.
#6 : pretty wide open as I recall but another challenging pin placement if you go past
#7: Great hole as it uses the dirt road. Slight up hill to start then hole is on steeper up hill in mature trees to the right.
#8: Stellar gap over the a small valley
#9: Can recall but wide open start
#10: Another awesome tried alley way, the tightest windows of the course
#11: Big wide open bomb
#12: Big bomb to a decent protected pin placement
#13: As I recall a sort of blind shot to a tight landing pad before approaching a protected pin placement that has a drop behind it.
#14: Starts with a big gap drive beware of the rough and the ridge that drops away on the right (I think on this hole)
#15: A good drive puts over a lower elevation area and on deck for a birdie.
#16: Long hole as I recall, mostly wide open
#17: One of our favorites with an old telephone pole creating a tight window. Slight downhill feel to it.
#18: Show piece hole if you dare to do some risky climbing to the upper window of the barn. I don't recommend frankly as it's the way down that is more tricky, but if you do, it's a fun long shot through a big barn door on the second floor.
In summary, a great course that takes advantage of the contours. It's long and doesn't return back to the car until 18 so bring all that you'll need.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
Potential for Epic-ness
Pros: -Diverse layout. Some tight shots, some open bombers, some hyzer tee shots, some anny tee shots.
- Great park! NSRA is HUGE! Interesting scenery (abandoned dairy farm) set in the Skagit valley with views of the Cascade Mountains in almost every backdrop. Beautiful.
- Huge parking lot
- Brand new baskets
- Alternate 'Art' baskets on some holes
- Port-o-Pottys on site!
-Great Flow! Never have to walk very far to next basket, 18 puts you right back where you started.
- Great finishing hole (18)
Cons: -$5 dollars for this?
-Poorly maintained Teepads
-Rarely maintained - can be super scraggy
Other Thoughts: This course has a lot of potential. The park is huge and the disc golf course is well laid out. There is good variety to the holes - there's a couple of long bombers (640' hole 16) and plenty of duece-able shorter holes. Elevation and trees are well utilized. No water holes. I noticed the parks department was requesting a $5 donation for use of the park. Side note: I don't mind paying/donating to play golf - I think it's a great idea. When you charge $$ to play a golf course though, there is an expectation beyond 'grass will be mowed'. When you're charging $$ for a course, I expect to see concrete tee pads with benches, trash cans and signs. I didn't see ANY of that here. Teepads were strips of mud with 3" of standing water with a little gravel in it - typically on a slope. If you're lucky. No benches. No trash cans. No signs. Fairways were recently mowed, but I understand that's a highly unusual event (maybe twice a year?) and the blackberries were in their typical fall retreat, but still look like they could be a big factor come spring time. I really had no intent to bag this course just because they are asking for a $5/donation, I only wanted to note it, but now that I'm writing about it, it did leave a bad taste in my mouth overall. I'm giving this course a 4/5 rating because it is an epic lay-out and a very well designed course. With the teepads sorted out and some more 'grooming' done to the fairways/blackberry acreage it could be 5/5.
1 Helpful / 5 Not
Pros: setting, cool abandoned buildings, art baskets, decent variety of hole types
Cons: can be squishy after a good rain, art baskets seem to being phased out :-(, some epic blackberry thickets, oh those horrid tee pads...
Other Thoughts: Love this course but I'm really bummed to see the art baskets go. I loved them as it added an extra challenge and changed some the norms you've come to expect. Change is good right?
1 of 6 people found this review helpful.
unique to this area
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: unusually open course for this region. many long holes where you can really let 'er rip, as opposed to the super-tight woodsy, short nature of most courses in this region.
they recently placed real baskets on every hole. some "art targets" are still in place, but there are real targets next to them.
great use of the gentle elevation the terrain provides- in general the course is flat, but the designers used the rolling terrain to maximum effect.
cool old buildings on the property.
limited interference from other park users, with the exception of hole 1.
Cons: the teepads suck, like super bad. i assume there are plans to improve them now that they have real targets on every hole. it would be a great place for real-deal tourneys then.
UPDATE: concrete tee pads! 1/2 disc up-rating from me!
the briars are insane, so don't throw your disc into them!!
Other Thoughts: this place is such a nice change of pace from the other courses in the area since it has such big distance. come here to stretch your arm out and watch 'em fly! with new teepads, this would be a very worthy spot for big tournaments. UPDATE: concrete pads and real baskets on every hole were a fantastic improvement to this course.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
1 Helpful / 2 Not
An Artistic Challenge
Pros: Excellent mix of different shots, elevation changes, occasional trees and obstacles, and unusual basket targets which I loved. Great adventure in nature worth the miles of hike.
Cons: LONG course which took 3+ hrs to finish but that's what I like - did seem like the 6 miles they claim it might be in total. Some holes far apart or confusing. Might loose a disc in swamp or blackberries.
Other Thoughts: Can't wait to see it in the summer time.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
A Great Course to Serve the Area
Pros: Like any great course the NSRA DGC requires a wider variety of disc golf shots. Long, short, left, right, forehand, backhand, anhyzer, hyzer, overhand, and rolling shot's will all make an appearance in a well executed round at this course. In addition the fairways offer nice additional textures (ie. from open areas into thicker forest, rounding corners to enter different areas, throwing through tight gaps into more open areas) Great use of existing landscape. Great use of alternative style targets. Great use of existing fairways. Good spacing between holes. Interesting layout. Relatively few muddy or wet areas.
Cons: Very little negative to say. The course is a bit rough but really not very bad. Brambles are limited to distinct areas (ie. not the fairways). The alternative style targets are open to a bit of interpretation which I'm sure the locals have figured out but it is plain enough.
Other Thoughts: By designing the course with a high degree of sensitivity to the existing natural, and disturbed landscape features the course attains a very nice degree of harmony with the land. The alternative targets add to this strong sense of place, which makes this not only a great place for disc golf, but also a very popular place for hikers, dog-walkers, and joggers. The land is likely used by birdwatchers or other naturalists as well.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
One to remember
Pros: Creativity! I REALLY dig the sculpture art baskets they have scattered around. I remember one that looked like a slide and another was simply a bucket upside down on the pin.
Its perfect length, no over crowding trees and super secluded.
Great elevation changes throughout the course.
Cons: I was in high top shoes, should have brought some hiking boots or wellies.
Don't remember seeing a bathroom or a water source so be weary of that.
A little tough to follow the first time around considering the dirt tee pads and small signage.
Other Thoughts: When I played this course it had rained a day or so prior which created some muddy terrain. The course staggers around a connection of fields and always leaves you with a new set up.
A must for anyone living near the Puget Sound.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
When the grass is short, best course in whatcom/skagit/snohomish counties.
- Big, long distance.
- Open design allows wind to make course more difficult.
- Beautiful scenery.
- Great course layout, no fairways cross each other.
- The few art baskets add to the difficulty and creativity of the course.
- NEVER CROWDED!
- Only a couple holes have substantial elevation changes (3,6,18). I would like more.
- Blackberries on the borders of a couple holes make it easier to lose discs.
- Beginners will be frustrated by the distance of this course (especially if they are comparing it to cornwall park).
- Art baskets (some people don't like them).
- The GRASS! From late April to Mid July this course becomes very difficult to play (without losing discs) with 3ft tall grass surrounding the fairways.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
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