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:
Yucaipa Valley Golf Club challenges players of all skill levels with a par 72 championship-length course. Club swingers avoid bogeys while aiming for birdies, eagles, and instant game-winning pterodactyls as they traverse Yucaipa's fairways, dotted with sand traps and water hazards. Further obstacles include the beautifully distracting views of the San Bernardino Mountains. To rescue golfers from the exhaustion of walking and the unreliability of squirrel-pulled chariots, the club outfits players with a convenient motorized golf cart. The buggy comes equipped with a GPS system to facilitate smooth journeys across the sprawling 6,803-yard course.
Cleaved between the wildlife-rich waterways of the Columbia and Whitaker sloughs, Colwood National Golf Club’s 18-hole course unfurls across 6,158 yards of scenic parkland terrain. Throughout the round, forgiving fairways provide ample landing space for flush drives and displaced blimps, providing a slight advantage to players with exceptional length off the tee. Water hazards impede players’ passage on multiple holes including the par 5 fifth, the course’s most difficult hole, where an oval-shaped pond guards the left side of a dramatic dogleg left. The par 72 course is equipped with advanced draining systems to keep the grassy monolith in pristine playing condition year-round. Divot-tearing duos take in the course’s tall trees, immaculate greenery, and heist-planning waterfowl astride a nimble golf cart, which spins its wheels in applause when players sink stunning bogey putts.
Staffed by experienced coaches and computers who’ve sworn allegiance to the three laws of golfing robotics, GolfTEC’s motion sensors and high-speed cameras monitor swings and break down each individual’s form on a high-definition video display to get results. Sensors chirp with approval whenever they detect the perfect stroke or an especially witty golfing joke. GolfTEC’s certified personal coaches will point out flaws and strengths while providing golfers with tips on how to permanently improve their game from tee to green.
Tall nets surround Sunset Golf Center’s driving range, their forgiving springiness easing wayward balls back toward the range's lush green. Here, golfers launch balls from the center’s 50 practice stalls, more than half of which are sheltered from the elements. Artificial-grass mats carpet each stall with blades soft enough to mimic real fairways but short enough to avoid attracting artificial cows, and across the grounds, a stone Statue of Liberty oversees play atop the 18-hole miniature-golf course. From his post at the center, golf instructor Sandy Sutherland helps both juniors and adults to hone their links prowess.
Meriwether National Golf Club invites players across the handicap spectrum to test their mettle at the 27-hole golf complex carved through the farmland of the Tualatin Valley. The club?s 18-hole, 6,719-yard layout incorporates open terrain, tree lines, and ponds that test golfers? ability to adapt to course conditions and phase out the indigenous birds demanding to use headcovers as nests. Golfers looking for an expedited round can loop the club?s nine-hole course, which lets players hone approach shots with six par 3s and three par 4s. Stationed next to the course, the Meriwether Grill remains open until 7 p.m. every night to provide post-round meals for those who haven?t spoiled their appetites by eating an unfavorable scorecard. Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Length of 6,719 yards from the farthest tees * Three tee options * Scorecard