Since 1959, St. Helens Golf Course, just a short 30-minute drive from Portland, has enveloped golfers in a quiet serenity as they propel their golf balls along its nine holes. Before tackling the course, players shake the rust off their short games on the putting and chipping green and perfect their wind-ups inside the hitting cage. The course’s relatively short layout and lack of crowds enables players to finish a round quickly and leave the rest of the day for daydreaming about perfect putts and whittling tees into figurines of favorite golfers.
Course at a Glance:
Nine-hole, par-36 course
Total length of 3,040 yards from the back tees
Course rating of 68.1 from the back tees
Course slope of 114 from the back tees
Three sets of tees per hole
The majestic beauty of Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, and Mt. Hood surrounds Tri Mountain Golf Course, which garnered a four-star editor's rating from Golf Digest. Award-winning greens cushion patrons' cleats, and golf carts cruise from tee to tee while skirting around the fairways' 11 water hazards and 64 sunbather-filled bunkers. Tri Mountain Golf Course's championship-worthy site has hosted such notable competitions as the ESPN National Golf Challenge , and it unveils its manicured turf for guests looking to practice, play, or find a bloodless alternative to a duel. Although not included in the Groupon, hungry hackers taking a breather from swinging, slicing, and making sand angels in the bunkers may stop at the clubhouse and order from the Tri-Mountain Grille, which overlooks the 18th hole.
Journey to Young's Vanco Golf Range in Vancouver, Washington, for a 40-minute, round-changing golf makeover and a bountiful bucket of superior-quality golf balls to whack your new talents upon. Jack has more than 20 years of experience teaching golfists who golf at all skill levels, from beginners to tournament champions. The lesson (a $50 value) takes place in a covered outdoor range where Jack's diligent eye, step-by-step coaching, and fancy video and computer equipment break down every aspect of your swing for careful analysis; the video swing analysis will allow comparison to the swings of over 200 golf professionals. Although he's yet to discover an effective way to teach his trajectory-altering telepathy to students, his before-the-strike tutoring works wonders, slicing hooks and hooking slices into fairway-splitting straight-shots.
I & G Golf Range gives golfers ample space to address holes in their golf game and develop consistent, dependable swings at a driving range with flagstick targets marked with distances. Visitors collect their allotment of range balls and tee them up on one of the covered mat stalls or, when weather permits, on one of the grass tee stations. Sending golf balls into lower orbit or toward flagsticks scattered at various distances about the range helps players master distance control and understand why ships fly flags to hinder the aim of nervous cannoneers.
Locals who frequent the nine holes of Skyline Golf Course have taken to calling it Cathlamet’s “Emerald Gem.” With its undulating fairways and scenic views of the Columbia River Basin, the course offers little to challenge this honored epithet. Designed by architect Ralph Rodahl, its treacherous doglegs and ponds have been distracting hole-bound balls for nearly half a century. Among Rodahl’s most challenging designs are two holes at par 5 and two at par 3, each of which requires golfers to navigate a fairway rife with hazards and packs of feral golf carts.
Situated near the first tee, an ample driving range allows for long-distance practice before setting off to conquer the high-risk, high-reward course. After the round, players can replenish with a cold refreshment or savory snack on the clubhouse deck, or upgrade their golf gear with a new sleeve of golf balls from the pro shop or a cyborg caddy from the future.
Course at a Glance:
Bill Scheller took a leap into an untested space when he registered the domain name GolfClubs.com in 1995. The internet was still a big, giant question mark, but whereas most golf stores were constrained by space and stocked a limited amount of equipment, clothing, and robo-caddies, physical space was not an issue on the wild frontier of e-commerce. Bill set out to assemble the biggest selection number of irons, drivers, and apparel on the planet and couple that selection with great customer service.
Though the GolfClubs.com homepage looks different than it did in 1995, Bill's original vision remains the same. Golfers of all stripes can look to the website for equipment from major brands such as Callaway, TaylorMade, and NIke—indeed, just about anything that helps them play the game they love. Players can also head to the company's brick-and-mortar location in Portland to sample that same selection in person instead of online.