After finishing up about an hour early today at the Oregon Manufacturers’ Summit in Tigard, I thought I would try and get greedy and sneak in ONE MORE disc golf course before I returned to my new courses desert in Coos Bay (the nearest course to me that I have not played is about 75-80 minutes East of me). Only one problem: it was pouring rain up in Portland. But the further I drove South (more like crawled, as it took forever to get out of the city with bumper-to-bumper traffic), the lighter the rain became. And by the time I made it as far South as Albany, Oregon, I decided that getting a little wet would be worth the additional +1 in my Courses Played Collection.
So I checked on UDisc for a good course that I hadn’t yet had the privilege of playing, and I decided that Bryant Park on the West side of Albany would be the winner. A bit of a monster, weighing in at over 6,800 feet over eighteen holes, it wasn’t the quick, easy +1 that might have made more sense! But I like trying to play eighteen-hole courses whenever possible, as too many nine-hole courses can feel like “cheating” on the course collecting front after a while. 🙂
By the time I got to the Hole 4 tee, the skies opened up and I was getting rained on pretty hard. Although at that point, and knowing that a lot of the upcoming holes would be under the tree canopy, I was committed to see my round through to the end. And as soon as I made that mental decision? My approach shot, a sort of spike hyzer around a tree came up short and decided to lodge in some branches 17-18 feet above the ground.
My next ten minutes were spent throwing a 15-18 inch log, as high in the air as I could in the rain, hoping to get close to my disc and knock it loose enough to come falling down to the ground. I’m sure I was a funny sight to the woman sitting in the dry comfort of her truck 75-100 feet away…watching this crazy guy throw a log up into a tree 20-30 times. But the disc golf gods FINALLY took pity on me after a while…catching a branch close enough to my disc to send it straight to the ground. It was a good thing too, as on that throw? My log was stuck up in the tree. 🙂
So I continued to work my way around the wet, muddy course (did I mention I was still wearing my khakis and turtleneck from the meeting I attended this morning?), and after about 45 minutes of suffering and misery, I jumped back into my dry rental car. The proud owner of a -4 (58) score and a surprisingly strong estimated round rating of 996! I tease folks that like certain types of horses, I am a “mudder.” I play well in the wet muck because I’m used to playing with a wet body. Wet hands. Wet, muddy discs. I haven’t carried a towel with me in years! So if my disc is wet and/or has a bit of mud on it? Let’s play. Versus others, who need a clean, dry disc or the wheels start to come off their game.
Hooray! Another +1 toward my goal of 2,000 courses played. Eight more to go….
Magic Number = 8 (1,992 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’s (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.