Today I needed to make my way up toward Seattle, to attend the 44th Western International Band Clinic event that my youngest daughter is participating in on Monday. So it was the perfect opportunity to knock out a couple of courses I’ve had to drive past previously, along with one course that has been installed in the past year.
My first stop was at Jack’s Track in Albany, Oregon. This course was installed in 2022, after I made my trek from Minnesota to Oregon. A quick chance to add a +1 to my Courses Played Collection. A super-short 1,882 feet over nine holes, it is a course that most good players should shoot in the teens. I did not. 🙂 I struggled my way to a -6 (21), for an estimated round rating of 951. More like an 851, if you ask me…as that course, while making great use of the trees that they have in the park, is super-easy to deuce.
My second course on the day was Jefferson School District in Jefferson, Oregon. I’ve driven past this course a few times in the past, as it is only available for play outside of 8-4pm, Monday thru Friday, between September and May (as well as being available in the Summer). It is sort of a strange course! A few interesting holes, but several head-scratchers. Like Hole 6 (the above photo). A right-to-left-to-right S-curve between two buildings. And when you get close to the second building, you can see people’s discs up on top of the solar panels on its roof. An unsafe hole design (a blind shot into where people walk/drive), but also an “unfair” design. Players have little to no chance of making a good shot on the hole without risking property damage, injuring others, and/or losing a disc. 🙁
The course does have a couple of fun holes, like Hole 8 (above). Your only chance at a deuce is to fire a LOW laser less than four feet off the ground. I didn’t have success, needing to settle for my par-3. In fact, I only managed a -2 (26) over the ten holes I played. But at 3,006 feet over those ten holes, factoring in a couple of the bad/unsafe hole designs? I thought the estimated round rating of 951 was solid.
After Jefferson, we needed to put a LOT of miles behind us, getting as far North of Portland as we could before calling it a night. We ended up making it to Olympia, Washington…but not before I had a chance to sneak in one more nine-hole course in Castle Rock, Washington. Castle Rock DGC was a super-short 1,775 feet, PERFECT for me, as the sun had already set by the time we got there (and we were quickly losing daylight). Holes 1-2 seem to be the victim of some recent park (re)development, as the tee areas (as identified by UDisc) were sitting under lots of other materials and park elements. But despite that bit of discomfort during the round, I managed to shoot a -9 (19) for an estimated round rating of 1000. A nice way to finish my day. Putting me within striking distance of a goal I never thought would be possible, as early as tomorrow.
Magic Number = 5 (1,995 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.