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Roche Harbor DGC
Pros: The Roche Harbor Disc Golf Course is located on the Roche Harbor Trails system just off of Rouleau RD. The course is easy to find and baskets are visible from the road as well as the entrance sign which was build by hand. Once you park, you'll see a gate, go through the gate and you're on your way to hole number one. The first things you will notice are the rubber fly pads that are in excellent shape as well as the tee signs that were built from hand that have flight path of the hole as well as the distance of the hole written on every tee sign. Almost all of the holes have benches that were built by gathering the surrounding area stumps, sticks and logs and nailing them together. Trails are a little muddy and this was addressed by taking sticks and building pathways above the muddy trails spots. Navigation is very easy and the few walkouts have a little white arrow directing you where to go. There is even a practice basket on site and it's a MACH III which is better than the DISCcatchers in my opinion. here is a walk through guide to the course:
#1: This starts out in the open field with the tree line on your right. There is a small gap about 220 past the tee pad in the tree line and another 20 feet to the basket from there. The safest way to play this hole is to lay up in the open field and throw in to the gap and if you are short or long of the gap you are more than likely getting a bogey; this is risky hole to attempt a birdie.
#2: This is a slight tunnel shot down hill into the open field with the basket tucked behind a large bush in the open field. going left on this hole is not recommended and will guarantee you a very tough putt.
#3: This hole starts in the open field and plays towards the tree line on the left and the right; you must keep it straight here.
#4: This is one of the more funky holes on the course and one of my favorites as well. This is an extreme low ceiling shot that's only 200 feet and incredibly tough to ace or even birdie. I think the best shot on this hole for a birdie is a RHFH roller shot since the hole ends up a hill this will slow down the rolling of the disc and this shot will avoid the low ceiling.
#5: This is a downhill semi tunnel shot that must not go long as this will effect your putt coming back up the slight hill.
#6: This is another fun hole! The basket is tucked way back behind a lot of trees and this is a tightly wooded straight shot with an ending hyzer; oh did I mention another low ceiling shot? Also much trouble off the fairway as well.
#7: This is an open field shot with tall bushes in front and to the right of you and you must throw a hyzer to clear as well as lay up in front of a tree guarding the basket.
#8: This is the only straight forward shot on the course. This is the longest hole on the course and it is wide open with no obstacles in the open field.
#9: The last hole is an uphill hyzer and another low ceiling shot with a serious WALL of trees on the left. Must stay straight until the wall and then the disc needs to hyzer, this is the shortest hole on the course and there is danger of a bogey or worse.
Cons: This is not a tournament caliber course so there are no real long bomber holes on the course and the more experienced disc golfers will be able to shoot under par most or all of the time. The grass in the open field holes is way out of control and it looks as if they don't mow the course very often so finding discs here can be a little frustrating especially on hole number eight. If you don't live on the island then it's a pain in the butt to try and go play this course; from Anacortes it's $66 for a car and one passenger and getting off of the island on a Sunday is near impossible and you will be waiting for room on a ferry all day! Very little amenities on the island other than a couple of small local restaurants and businesses.
Other Thoughts: I'm not exactly sure when this course was put in but on the baskets we saw people writing their aces that were dated back to 1999. I find it hard to believe that this course has been in that long and no one I know of has ever heard of this place. I recommend taking a significant other to the island for other things and then stopping by to play the course as the views just from the ferry are worth the trip alone. I was there on a 75 degree sunny Saturday afternoon and there were only two other groups there that we saw in our two rounds of golf so I don't think the course gets used very often. I also saw a sign for a Sunday ace pot that starts at noon and costs $3. There was also another large sign warning of open containers and recreational drugs; they are very clear that kind of thing will NOT be tolerated on this course. The one thing I really liked to see was there was NO litter! They didn't even have garbage cans on the course except for near hole one but still no litter, I wish all courses were this way!
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