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Disc Golf

While hiking in the Wasatch mountains near Solitude one balmy August morning, I came upon strange elevated metal baskets, flags and a small sign saying "Disc Golf Course #5". Curiosity piqued, when I spotted three strapping young men carrying what looked like mini Frisbees, I was compelled to approach them and find out what this was all about.

They were playing Disc Golf, a sport that is gaining in popularity and notoriety across the country. While not your dad's form of golf, Disc Golf is a new and hipper way to test your skills at getting something small into a container just slightly bigger than its circumference.

The ball itself resembles a mini Frisbee (in fact, the game is commonly referred to as Frisbee Golf), and the object of the game is to toss the thing into a basket (also called a Pole Hole) with the least amount of throws (strokes). Typically all holes are par 3, and much like regular golf, you can get a hole-in-one (a very exciting thing to see first hand), birdie, par, bogie, etc.

While it is still a gentleman's game (the rules are similar to regular golf) there is no uniform--plaid knickers and white shoes are not required. Heck, you don't even need to wear a shirt or shoes at all. And the scenery on the courses (such as the one at Solitude Ski Resort) rivals that of traditional golf courses.

18 holes makes a full round, and most courses either have 9- or 18- holes. While there are several courses across the valley, Solitude boasts the finest high altitude course with 18-holes that are available for play from Thursday through Monday during the warmer months. (Obviously this sport is not available when there is snow on the “course”.)

You can hike up to Solitude's first hole which is at about 9000 ft or you can take the Sunrise lift (lift prices are $6 per ride or a five-ride pass for $24 that is good all season).

Disc Golf is almost always free to play. There are no green fees. The only things you have to buy are the discs which run from $7-$16. The discs come in loads of designs, some are best for putting and some better for driving. So you'll want to try out a few to see what works best for you.

Solitude has a fun starter package, called the “1st Timer Package” for those who want to try the game out before investing in their own discs. For $20.00, you will get a lift ticket, two disks, instructional one-sheet score card, and a Solitude Disc Golf Sticker. You will be reimbursed $5.00 for each disc returned if you decide to return them, or if you don't lose them.

If you want to see some intense disc golf action, be sure to head up to Solitude in the fall for the “Full Throttle Challenge”. This competition has one of the 25 largest cash purses in the country -- close to $10,000 -- and there will be some pros showing off their stuff.

Thanks to Bryan Kenitzer of UtahDiscGolf.com for confirming facts and providing one of the pictures.

Disc Golf Courses in Utah

Organizations

Backroads of Utah
by Theresa A. Husarik

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