1 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Oak Grove Park is located in Pasadena, California and is the first disc golf course ever.. Oak Grove is unique for its variety of holes as well as how old it is. This course hosts a disc golf tournament every year called the Winter Time Open. Almost every hole plays through these big oak trees which is probably why the call it oak grove. This course starts out with a mando on the first hole.
I thought this hole was really challenging because you have to cut the mando hard to have a look at the basket. Hilly terrain on some of the holes. It was really unique to see the first ever basket on display there it just shows that disc golf has come a long way. Hole 2 is also another fun hole. This hole is a great shot to practice your technical lines.
Hardware on this course has been updated as well. The pictures are a little old and no the vintage basket is not part of one of the holes basket. All of the discatchers are new and nothing much to complain about. Tee pads are concrete as well as big garbage cans.
On Hole 3 there were some picnicers on the course right in the middle of the hole. There are also bathrooms with a big parking lot. I played on what felt like a 100° day and man it was exhausting. There is a lot of shade but on the holes that do not have shade it was a hot mess.
The climate reminds me of Chavez Ridge. Hot and dry in the shaded area. I wonder if they have the wintertime open in the winter for a reason. Some of the back holes are fun. Also the spider basket on hole number 4 was really cool but challenging. This hole plays uphill finishing with the weirdest position for a basket. Oak Grove's history reminds me of Delaveaga Park.
They both have unique holes named after something like the refrigerator or the spider basket. With those California dust skips you will get the best of then here in the summer.
Cons: I played in the back of this group that was like an 8 sum. They were not good and it was like a college group just hacking around the course. I do wish they would split up but I found a gap and cut right in front of them.
The course is a little sloppy on layout. On some of the back holes it was confusing. This course plays mostly in the shade but on those back holes it is hot and dry. Man this course is a desert and I mean it. A lot of the trash cans are filled with beer and cigarettes which was not very pleasant.
The course does not really get maintained which is ok but it needs some updating. Some of the chains are rusting and not in the best shape. There is a practice basket in the parking lot but it is not the greatest for long putting practice. Cars drive by and without getting hit you can only get about a 20 footer at the most.
Other Thoughts: Overall this course was fun to play with all the unique features and is a tournament course which I am not surprised because it is the first ever disc golf course. I like a lot of things about oak grove it is a little outdated. Some of the holes offer some unique shots as well as some unique holes. Bathrooms are okay but not the greatest. Overall I would like to play it again on a winter day when there is overcast.
Hole 5 alternate tee is my favorite hole on this course. This hole plays all the way down the hill straight to the basket. Man nothing like this hole. It is great and basically the only hole with grass.
Some blind shots on this course make it nice and it does look like they have done some renovating. Oak Grove offers one of the best for a variety. All the pin locations are a little confusing but not really. I think all the back tees are rubber but I am not sure.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Versatile terrain, accessible difficulty
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Tons of possible pin locations for each hole
- Nearly 30 holes for flexibility in tournament layouts
- bathrooms near all edges of the course
- Big parking lot
- With the exception of some of the desert holes all are reachable for rec+ players
- greens are well guarded, being 10-20 ft away doesn't always mean you will have a put
- tons of oak trees, mandos, elevation changes require precise lines off the tee
- It's almost like 3 different courses-- super wooded and elevation changes on the front 9, more open park style on most of the back 9, then you have the long bomber out in the open desert holes. Keeps the holes from getting too repetitive.
- Hard to lose a disc--only thing rough on a couple of holes
- Minimal OB except on the holes near the road/parking lot
- Pretty close to the highway so easy to get to
- Water fountain right at the start of the course
- Except for the desert hole it's pretty shady so you can have some refuge from those blazing Pasadena summer days
- Awesome community of huckers--active league and locals who try to make every tournaments. Everytime I've gone I feel like I've seen a league or an event on the course.
- And of course I'm obligated to mention that this is the original disc golf course so that's cool too.
Cons: - Flow is damn near impossible to navigate for a first time visitor. I played whatever hole I could find after wandering around the first time. Didn't figure out the actual layout until playing a tournament.
- I don't love the baskets--the chains can be a little heavy and push out things that don't hit perfectly in the center.
- baskets are pretty much all the exact same height with the exception of 1 elevated one
- Lots of oblivious park goers, this was even during a 3 rd tournament with signs everywhere, dog walkers going in and out of fairways at their own leisure
- Practice basket in the parking lot isn't the best placement unless you only want to practice 15ft putts. Leads to people putting from the parking lot and dodging cars
- The first couple holes on the field are always the toughest when it comes to other park goers--people who have booked the field, oblivious walkers, cranky old men hitting golf balls, etc.
Other Thoughts: An awesome course that's scorable for rec thru open players but has enough trouble and tight lines to make sure nothing is a gimme. Variety in hole shapes and terrains keep things interesting. Plus the walks from hole to hole (once you know where to go) aren't too long or demanding so it's not any sort of endurance test.
If you are in the area I would definitely recommend this course over Chavez--you'll have to walk fewer hills, get fewer rollaways, have an easier time parking, and get to experience some real history of the sport. Plus if you're taking a beginner they won't be permanently scared off the sport like they would if you took them to Chavez.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Showing its age
1 Helpful / 1 Not
Pros: - DG History.
- Old basket in 10's fairway.
- Shaded Parking
Cons: - Day Campers (I get it but man could they not take up the whole park?)
- Worked over like the Hookers we saw in Vegas.
- Hot as F on the back side (the Desert)
Other Thoughts: Day 3 of 12 we played Oak Grove in Pasadena, CA. This is some DG History right here folks! Unfortunately the Day Camp had the rights to the fields and the course. We went ahead and played anyway skipping the first 3 holes and one later. the course itself is ok. the holes are worn in and the back half of the course is like a desert. Not ideal but we played it and happy to have. Wouldn't go back though as there are much better rounds to be had.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Must play! More fun once familiar.
3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: - Historic value. First permanent course ever!! You can see one of the original baskets tucked into a tree to the left of the fairway on Hole #10.
- Scenery. All of the old oak trees make you forget you're still in Los Angeles (whereas at nearby Chavez Ridge you're well aware the entire time). This makes it a great respite for city dwellers like myself.
- Well-designed. The holes have a lot of variation, and you'll find opportunities to work on all sorts of shots. There are plenty of big, open holes that give you a chance to air it out, and short, technical holes that play in and out of the woods. There are also 4 open "desert" holes that provide a uniquely-SoCal feel to the course.
- Something for everybody, and fun for everyone from beginners to seasoned pros. Whether you've got a canon and like to air it out or shine more in technical situations, Oak Grove has it all.
- Strong community of locals. No matter what time I go there are always folks out playing, and so far in my experience everyone is really friendly and welcoming.
- Multiple basket locations for every hole.
- Nice, safe area. Pretty close to the local high school but it's separate enough that you aren't aware while you're playing.
- Water fountains and bathrooms on site. The porta-potties near the soccer fields are the cleanest I've seen.
Cons: - Navigation for first timers is difficult. The course has been redesigned over the years, and many of the cement tees have the wrong hole number etched into them. Following locals can make this even more confusing because a lot of folks seem to play their own preferred variations of the course.
- Signage could use an update. Would love to see "next hole" signs, at least on the holes where the next tee is not visible from the basket. Would be amazing to have a kiosk near the practice basket with a course map so people have a general idea of where to go.
- The teepads are solid, but the trapezoidal shape can cause some confusion about which basket you should be playing to (particularly on the back 9, where you can often see multiple baskets from the tee). Most teepads are cement, and a few holes have rubber tees.
- Bystanders. Being a multi-use park, there are often kids playing on the adjacent fields, runners, people walking their dogs, and the occasional horse riders. Fortunately, the course is well-designed and most of the park patrons won't be in your way - but you may need to yell "fore!" now and again.
- Maintenance, mostly on the desert holes. As of this review (May 2018), the brush is so tall and dense on 14-15-16 that I often just skip from 14 to 18 (I probably have these hole numbers wrong). I've been told that these holes are on property that is not technically owned by the park, so I imagine that's why these holes are not as well maintained as the others.
Most of these cons are really from a first-timer's perspective. Some familiarity with the course makes it much more enjoyable!
Other Thoughts: This course got me back into disc golf after not really playing since I moved to LA. Really love playing here, and even though Chavez Ridge is closer to me this has become my home course.
With some updated signage and a little TLC this course could be a 5. Fun, rewarding course for players of all skill levels, and a piece of disc golf history!! Looking forward to playing in the weekly tourneys and getting active with the local club!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: -This course is called Oak Grove for a reason. The majority of the course plays throughout a beautiful grove of old-growth oaks. Several holes also play out in an open, desert area.
-Quite a few holes have nice-looking tee signs. Most of the hole numbers are off, however, as the course has undergone numerous re-configurations.
-The course tests several types of shots. The holes in the park area, with the oak trees emphasize low line-drives and skip shots. The holes out in the desert afford a good opportunity for crushing.
-Most of the tee pads are hexagonal and concrete. I like that they allow for multiple run-up angles. Unfortunately, they've seen better days. Several were cracked, crumbling, or uneven. Trash cans and benches were present on most tees.
-Restrooms can be found on the back 9.
-Multiple basket positions on most every hole.
Cons: -Oak Grove appears to be a constantly evolving course. I understand that the layout is altered for the Wintertime Open, after heavy rain storms, and other events. No one map can be a permanent reference, however the ones on file do a good job of keeping you on track in the general direction of the course. As a result, it can be a challenge to find your way, as well as keep score.
-The section of holes in the desert is especially confusing. It was a hodgepodge of at least six baskets and several unmarked tees. I played a few holes I recognized from the Wintertime Open and moved on. Skipping this section altogether is not a bad idea if you're pressed for time.
-Several holes have a mini-golf feel, with an assortment of oddly shaped trees, huge boulders, tree roots, and baskets in difficult places. You never know when you'll get a crazy bounce.
-It's a popular multi-use park. Expect some oblivious park-goers, especially on the front 9.
Other Thoughts: -High spike hyzer lines are not preferred. It's very easy to get a disc stuck in one of the enormous oak trees. I saw a group of locals using sling-shots to get their discs down.
-Innova Discatcher baskets of various ages.
-"The course has been around forever, and has a well-beat-in feel. If it were a disc, it would be very understable by now." I know you're not supposed to comment on other people's reviews, but Phil Esra summed up the course perfectly. I wonder why, being known as the First Course in the world, and so close to Innova headquarters, it has not seen more improvements.
-Overall, however, this was a very enjoyable round. There's a plethora of fun lines to throw. Tip for the day: Bring a smile, not a scorecard!
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Good ol course
0 Helpful / 2 Not
Pros: Short and accurate
Lots of benches and shade
Not hard to navigate because it's a smaller course
Cons: Dry and dusty
Bees on hole 5 ( I got stung)
Basket 8 and 9 is right near parking lot
Horse crap (huge turds)
Other Thoughts: Its a campable course. I literally have camped on the course a dozen times. (Don't get caught). There are 23 holes which I play my own little 18 on my own.
0 of 2 people found this review helpful.
8 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: Intermediate Level Course set in a secluded area of a park.
Baskets - Including the practice basket, there were 23 (at the time) total baskets that I saw. The course seemed to be in a 20 (21) hole layout. They were DISCatchers that were a bit on the older side but still caught great. I did not have any spit outs. There are 3-4 pin placements per hole.
Tees - As mentioned, the layout seemed to be 21 holes. Of the 21, 18 were concrete and 3 were large rubber mats. They were not slick, however, only hole 5 seemed to be on the short side.
Variety - Most holes were between 250-350 feet give or take. There were a few blind shots; 7, 9, 14, and 15. Most holes were on the flat side although not completely flat. 5 was downhill, 8 had slight incline near basket, 13 had a basket on a small hill, and 14 went around a canyon. No shot was completely open, all holes had trees, brush, or rocks as obstacles. No two holes were alike.
Benches or trees at almost every hole. Only a few with rubber mats did not.
Trash cans at 90% of the holes. The park was very clean and the trash cans definitely helped.
Easy to navigate. Although there were a few holes present (not on the map) as well as the numbers on the concrete tees not matching the holes, the course flowed great. There were only a few times (rubber mats) where there could be confusion but fortunately a local pointed us in the right direction (including an extra hole near hole 13).
Portable restrooms on site (although hot inside)
A few water fountains on back 9.
Course was right off the highway.
Beautiful view of mountains.
Cons: There are several holes that sit right on top of each other. Tees for the next hole were borderline mid fairway of a current hole (see map). If the course was busy, this could be a dangerous situation. It could also add wait time. When I played course was not busy so this was a non factor.
There were a few holes that could use updated signs or at least a way to tell which pin position was currently being used (for distance purposes).
Biggest con was that there was not much shade and extremely hot, but being it was the LA area, that was expected. It's a part of the layout so not really a con.
From the exit provided by the directions, no places to grab drinks between highway and course, but if you take Foothill exit, there are places.
A few next hole signs would help since there are a cluster of holes near each other (10-20).
Other Thoughts: With multiple pin placements per hole, additional tees are not needed to increase the rating on this course, however, it would be nice to see which placement is used on a map. I would like to give it a higher rating seeing as it was the first course but I am basing it on its play.
I really enjoyed this course. I am from Indianapolis and my cousins live in LA so this was a must play during my visit. It was a little on the easy side for me but it had the same feel as the other Steady Ed Courses I have played in the Midwest. Not too hard but placement is key.
It was definitely a journey from the Santa Monica area but it was worth it. Although I would like to play this again, there are other LA courses I would like to try. I would recommend it if you area in the area, however, it is a bit out of the way from downtown LA (if you are traveling).
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Historic and Fun!
Pros: Beautiful location.
Nice adjacent field to warm up on.
A variety of shots to the left and to the right.
Some water hazards (make a course more fun!)
Not busy (we came pretty early.)
Long shots and short shots.
Low ceilings and wide open shots.
Cons: A few holes had no maps.
A couple fairways overlapped.
Hole 17 and 18 shared a basket because they were in the middle of setting up for a different season or tournament.
Other Thoughts: My buddy and I drove up from San Diego and got to Oak Grove around eight in the morning. When we arrived, the course was easy to find and there wasn't really anyone else there. We parked in the parking lot and walked around a bit to see where the first tee was. We found it pretty easily and also noticed that there was a baseball field adjacent to the course that looked really good for warming up or practicing drives on. We played through the course and found a nice variety of all kinds of shots, not extremely difficult, but definitely challenging because of the trees and many low ceilings. At one point we had to ask a couple people that had showed up which way to go because it wasn't very apparent and not all of the tees had maps on them. For some reason holes 17 and 18 shared a basket, and we were told that it was because they were setting up for a new season's layout (not sure if this was really true or not.) Besides being a little lost and chopping down many branches, we had a great time that I think anyone from a beginner to an advanced player would also have. The surroundings were very beautiful and in the background there were even snow-capped mountains (not usual for southern California!)
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Challenging Course in a Nice Environment
Pros: Challenging course design (including low ceilings)
Multiple pin locations; good mix of short and long distance
Decent amount of shade
Cons: Poor signage, especially on winter layout
Some tee pads are in the firing path of previous hole
Holes 12-16 are not laid out properly and are going to confuse people in terms of start/finish of each hole
The terrain behind JPL is challenging and can lead to many lost discs
Other Thoughts: This place has a ton of history baked into it and it is worth a visit for that reason alone. The crowd was friendly and easy-going. I never had any issues with poor play from others on the course (and one group helped me find a lost disc). The signage (at least for the winter layout) is terribly once you get out of the "grassy park" portion of the course. Once you venture out into the washed-out gulley you are in for a rude awakening (lost discs, poor directions, itchy terrain, long distance throws, etc.). I would recommend starting with a course-regular for the first time. The overall course rewards those with good shot selections and I enjoyed the mix of throwing types throughout the course.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
6 Helpful / 0 Not
Go Hahamongna or go home
Pros: Very frequent rotation of basket location
Historical significance to the sport
Thoughtful layout and variety
Cons: Crowded at peak times with golfers & others
San Gabriel Valley is hot and dusty in the summer. Megadrought.
Holes are not labelled or are mislabeled (old hole numbers embedded in concrete tees)
Almost impossible to figure out where the next hole is without map or assistance
This place is basically the opposite of a ball golf course--not a posh experience by any stretch. A quasi-urban municipal park.
Other reviews have mentioned a dbag presence--I have not seen that at all. To me that means rich guy in convertible BMW and USC v-neck sweater. Haven't seen this person here. Lots of solo players and lots of big groups. To me, the vibe is very tolerant, very "do what you feel." Today, a random guy insisted on spending 15 minutes in the hot sun helping me look for my disc (thanks, Javier), despite it clearly having been a horrible throw by a noob player.
Download a map from this site beforehand, or expect to be confused and frustrated trying to follow the course for the first time--signage is mostly non-existent. The back 9 is a maze, with a lot of similar holes right on top of each other.
Lots of giant shade trees. Lot of groups of guys standing under trees, throwing rocks up at their stuck discs--mostly enjoying the game-within-a-game. Lots of precision needed--or at least rewarded. Many 200-300' holes with trees in all the "wrong" places.
I have seen NO poison oak. There is some poodle-dog bush in the former pond on hole 14--some people have a poison oak-like reaction to it https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki...ictyon_parryi
The course has been around forever, and has a well-beat-in feel. If it were a disc, it would be very understable by now.
There are two bathrooms--near the hole 18 basket / hole 19 tee and up the hill from hole 4 (with others elsewhere in the park, I'm sure).
There are 5+ water fountains on the course--just keep an eye out.
Park gets a lot of use--I showed up one Sunday to find a massive cross-country meet going on. Free-for-all parking, kids picking up discs, golfers throwing onto a live race course...madness. Bring your zen, and don't take it too seriously.
6 of 6 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.