I got after it, hard, today as I continued on my way toward North Carolina! Ninety new holes of disc golf played on eight courses across three states. On top of hundreds of miles behind the wheel. I’ll sleep good tonight!
My morning started at Decatur County Park in Greensburg, Indiana. A scenic little nine-hole park and course, I must have been tired when I was playing, as I realized after I left that I forgot to take a few pictures! A cool bridge, some other interesting water features, etc. Oh well…another time.
At my second course of the morning, Liberty Park in Batesville, IN, I remembered to take a couple pictures. Not as scenic as Decatur County Park, it was still a quick, fun nine. A local walker also teased me about how I had better be able to make a 10-12 foot putt I left myself off one of the tees…after managing to miss about ten trees between the tee and the basket. 🙂
After Liberty Park, it was on to “The NATI,” to cross a To Do off my list for the past few years: playing more of the disc golf courses that Cincinnati has to offer. I had played Idlewild and Lincoln Ridge Park in the past. But Cincinnati has a much bigger, more diverse collection of courses than those two excellent courses. So after doing my homework before the trip, I decided that I wanted to check out Dunham Recreation Center closer to downtown.
The rough at Dunham is no joke! Missing fairways at the course made the prospect of losing discs a real possibility! And as I made my way around the course, I had to stop to help four different individuals look for lost plastic. One of whom had been walking the same patch of rough for more than a week, looking for TWO lost discs. “Live to fight another day” was my motto for the round at Dunham, managing a meager even par (54) on the round (an estimated round rating of 887). But having a full bag of discs and adding one more course to my collection were priorities #1 and #2.
After surviving Dunham with a full bag of discs, it was on to play one of the oldest disc golf courses in Ohio: Embshoff Woods. A course designed by none other than Steady Ed (Headrick) in 1981. One of the oldest remaining courses in the COUNTRY, much less Ohio, it was an honor to play what Ed created with his company’s plastic. And I just couldn’t resist a picture of my bag next to a map of this FRISBEE golf course! Thank you, Ed, for all you’ve done. 🙂
The wonderful bit of living history thoroughly enjoyed, and after a quick break for lunch at Skyline Chili (when in Cincinnati…), I then made my way to Florence, Kentucky to check out South Fork Park. A pleasant surprise, and a little nine-hole gem for locals to enjoy. I had to laugh though, as I had a gallery of three kids (under ten) watch me put my Squall from 175 feet within about two feet of the basket on Hole 8, located dangerously close to a shallow creek, behind two trees. I think they thought I was Paul McBeth, putting my disc that close to the basket! No golf claps, but one of the boys’ eyes opened very wide, and all he could muster was to say: “Whoa.” 😀
After South Fork, it was on to Walton, Kentucky to check out a nine-holer at their Community Park. And after an underwhelming -1 (26) for an estimated round rating of 840, I needed to redeem myself. And redeem myself I did, at Whitley Branch Veterans Park in London, KY. Shooting a -9 (45), for an estimated round rating of 1007.
The first few holes on that course were underwhelming. I thought it was just going to be a ho-hum pitch and putt to mark as a course played (nothing more). But that course surprised the heck out of me (in a good way), after I got through the first few holes. Elevation changes, a mixture of tight/technical and longer bombers, etc. A fun course! I love being pleasantly surprised like that.
Daylight was burning fast, so I decided that I had time for one more course on the day (and a shorter course at that). So the winner ended up being Briar Creek Park in Williamsburg, Kentucky. Maybe it was because the park was crowded with a cross country team practice, with lots of parents and coaches milling around, but that course felt less than safe during my round. Several spots where I had to wait for runners and walkers on the adjacent trails to clear the fairways. I also had one of the kids (9th/10th grader?) stop, pick up my disc, and throw it back to me, saying: “It’s okay…I don’t have the coronavirus!” I’m not sure if he was trying to be nice or not, but it was a strange interaction.
A lot of disc golf, and a lot of driving. Now I need a lot of sleep…so I can get after things again tomorrow. 🙂
Magic Number = 383 (1,617 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.