When the summer months roll around, many Twin Cities residents eagerly await the opportunity to hit the golf course. Dusting off plastic putters and $10 drivers, they procure maps of public parks and prepare to return to action. Doesn't sound like traditional golf to you? Its not. Its the emerging sport of disc golf.
Disc golf follows the basic golf formula, but players use a flying disc and attempt to throw their disc into an elevated metal basket. Chains around the basket catch the disc and drop it in.
Many public parks have courses with 9/18 holes ranging in length and difficulty. Ideal courses combine both open and wooded areas as well as changes in terrain. Its a good idea to wear long pants when playing as errant throws can involve a trek off the path to recover lost discs.
Despite the similarities, there are many benefits to disc golf as opposed to the traditional game. It is free to play, there is no need to sign up for a tee time, and a quality set of discs, consisting of a driver, midrange, and putter, can be purchased for under $30.00. It is a great way to excercise - a walk in a park combined with a competitive challenge.
Beginners should buy a "stable" disc. The disc itself will give this description. If you find your throws fade to the right you can get an overstable driver. The Innova Shark is a good all around disc if you just want to buy one. The best place to purchase discs in the Twin Cities is Gotta Go Gotta Throw in Minneapolis. This store is the largest disc golf supply location in the midwest and is a good resource for learning about local courses, and its owner and manager Mike Snelson is the President of the Minnesota Frisbee Association.
According to Snelson the four best park courses in the area are Kapoja in South St. Paul, North Valley in Inver Grove Heights, Oak Woods in Cottage Heights, and C P Adams in Hastings. These four locations hosted the 2001 world championship of the Proffessional Disc Golf Tour.
If you are a disc golfer and have any thoughts on local courses please post them for all to share.
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