Rose City Golf Course, in Northeast Portland, is a classic municipal course with a parkland feel. Nestled into a charming old neighborhood, it’s common to see the surrounding trails and park benches being utilized by residents. Opened in 1923, Rose City is the second oldest course in the city, and has a throwback feel with traditional features. Like the Wrigley Field of Portland public golf, there’s a vintage quality here that is easy to appreciate, even if evidence of its age exists. The handsome brick clubhouse is a signature to Rose City’s historic appeal. The abundant rows of old growth trees are a staple to the traditional style this course was founded upon, and adequately symbolize the long history of these grounds. Perhaps the easiest of Portland’s municipals, Rose City is a fun, affordable course for all golfers.
Rose City Golf Course is a regulation length track, but modest in distance. The front nine is a warm-up to the back nine, as shorter distances and minimal water make it user friendly for finding a groove. The back nine has several water hazards, and is a bit longer and no less narrow. The heavily tree-lined fairways are the biggest obstacle throughout the entire course, and provide risk-and-reward decisions. There’s a diverse array of trees ready to knock down ball flights and alter shot angles. If you can successfully navigate past them, you will be in good shape to score. The greens at Rose City are relatively simple and flat. Perhaps their toughest attribute is large surface areas, creating potential demand for accurate lag putts. In season, they can firm up and roll quite fast for their purpose. But they are otherwise average in speed and condition and modest in difficulty.
Rose City Golf Course is a good course for practicing while you play because the practice amenities are otherwise limited. There’s a small putting green outside the attractive clubhouse, but no driving range. There is however a small practice area off the 4th fairway with a few old tires for targets, where locals attempt to perfect their mid-iron game. The clubhouse contains the pro shop with it’s small supply of merchandise, as well as a snack bar and restaurant.