Still basking in a bit of the glow from a successful clinic and tournament in Winston-Salem yesterday. and after having a bit of time to relax and enjoy a little conversation with my aunt, uncle and cousin last night, I was on a mission today: playing at LEAST four new courses in South Carolina. Why at least four new courses? Because that would give me at least ten courses played in South Carolina, which would make South Carolina the 30th state in the United States where I have played at least ten courses.
With all the various accomplishments course collecting over the years, that is one of the achievements I am most proud of: playing at least ten courses in over half the states in the United States. Playing at least one course in all 50 states is what most people ooh and aah over. But playing 10+ in 29 different states so far? That takes a LOT more work.
My first stop in South Carolina on the day was Dacusville DGC in Easley. A little rough around the edges, it was actually a lot of fun! Better than I had expected, after reading some of the reviews. Though I narrowly dodged a potentially serious injury on this one. I was crossing a small wooden bridge over a miniature stream, when the bridge gave way as I put all my weight on it via my right foot. My right leg fell completely through the top of the bridge, with my left foot still on the bridge, my left knee up around my chin, and my pack with my discs still on my right shoulder.
I kept thinking after the experience, how bad it could have been had my right leg been sliced open via a rusty nail, or if my left ankle had been more than a little sore after it happened. I was hundreds of feet from my car, and probably one-quarter mile from the nearest person (all alone on the course). But I didn’t even have a scratch on me, so luck was on my side. I also played the course well, managing a -6 (49) for a gaudy estimated round rating of 1045. 945 would be more like it…but if anyone wants my autograph after my severely artificially-inflated estimated round rating, let me know! [/sarcasm] 😀
Course #2 in South Carolina on the day was Dolly Cooper Park. The baskets for Holes 1-4 were actually missing on the course, so thank goodness for the UDisc app! UDisc had a map of the course, so I was able to find tee locations and then aim at the nearest tree (where those baskets were supposed to be), to at least get a close approximation for how the course design is supposed to play. Made it back to the car with a -4 (50), and an estimated round rating of 960. Inflated from how I thought I played (~930s), but I suppose it’ll also make me look like a better player than I am…hehe.
After heading back to my aunt’s house for lunch and a little more time to visit with family, it was back out in search of more new courses in South Carolina. Course #3 on the day was Gowan Park in Greenville. That park was crawling with people! Probably 250-300 people, and I’m not sure I saw more than 20-30 people wearing masks. But nobody else was playing disc golf, so I had the course all to myself. And after my quick nine-hole round, I had managed a -3 (24) and an estimated round rating of 940. I also left the course with a souvenir: two deep scratches on my right middle finger. It just hasn’t been my day (falling through a bridge, scratching my finger, etc.), but things could ALWAYS be worse.
The sun was getting low in the sky, but I was determined to find one more course to play in South Carolina! And I had JUST enough daylight left to sneak a very fast nine in at Hampton Park Baptist Church in Greenville. The private property clearly says that the course/property is closed from dusk to dawn. And with the sun already partially set before I started my round? Let’s just say it might be the fastest nine holes of disc golf I have played in a while, a la Alan Hansen Begg’s “Run-a-Round!” 🙂 But less than twenty minutes after teeing off on Hole 1, I was back in the car and leaving the property…just in the nick of time. Managing a -4 (25) in the process.
Success! I got four new courses played in South Carolina, so now I can officially say that South Carolina became my 30th state where I have played at least ten disc golf courses. It is a good thing too, as Hampton Park isn’t available to play tomorrow morning, and there are no more unplayed courses between Greer, SC and the North Carolina border. Which will mean we can get a little further as we start the 1,200+ miles push for home tomorrow morning.
Magic Number = 372 (1,628 Courses Played)
How it All Got Started: Tonn’s Travels >>
A main purpose of this blog will be to share information, helpful tips and tricks (everything from health and fitness to methods for saving money while you’re out “bagging courses” of your own), and ideas for better, safer course design. But I am also hoping to inspire others with my passion for the sport, via the stories I can share about all of the interesting experiences I have. All of the interesting people I meet. All of the amazing courses I am blessed to have the opportunity to play. If I can inspire even a handful of individuals to get off the couch, get “out of their bubble” or “security blanket” and explore more of this big, beautiful planet we all call home? Then I will consider this effort a success.
Derek Tonn is a member of the DGA’s Ambassador Team. His company, Mapformation, LLC, has been DGA’s partner in the development of disc golf tee signage since 2012. The longer our two companies have worked together, and the more Derek has gotten to know all the great folks at DGA, the more he has wanted to formally sing the company’s praises. The more he has realized that “Steady” Ed the father of disc golf and the modern-day Frisbee vision for the sport and his company perfectly describes his own interests and priorities related to disc golf, and the more Derek has recently been encouraged to share his story.