Taylorsville boasts one of the best disc golf courses in valleyAug 07, 2022 08:37PM ● By Greg James
By Greg James | [email protected]
Disc golf is played much like golf, but instead of clubs and a ball, the equipment is a flying disc. Frisbee is not the correct name, it's disc golf.
“It is cheap, free in most cases, and in most cases easier, but still challenging,” West Jordan resident Jon Kehl said as he began playing with his sons. “I played in the South where this is really popular.”
Kehl leveled up the first tee at Gary C. Swensen Valley Regional Park in Taylorsville and let go with what he called “his best shot,” his driver disc sailed straight down the center approximately 40 yards toward the dog-leg hole No. 1.
“I must like the extra pressure,” he said as he began his disc golf outing.
Gary C. Swensen Valley Regional Park is the home of one of the better disc golf courses in the Salt Lake Valley. Its 18 holes play relatively flat, but several trees serve as semi-difficult obstacles for more experienced players. The course was built in 2002.
In the game, the golf disc is thrown from a marked tee box. The target or “hole” is usually an elevated metal basket. Usually, disc golf is free. Courses are generally found at local parks, but the emergence of pay-to-play courses is increasing around the country. In Salt Lake, Valley Regional, Creekside and Midvale City Park are the most popular. There are more than 10,000 courses worldwide.
“Valley Regional is a little more challenging. This is a sport I have been trying to get back into,” Kehl said.
The Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) is the governing organization of the sport.
Disc golf discs are generally smaller than their counterpart in flying Frisbees. They usually measure about 20 inches across and weigh about 5 ounces. There is a wide variety of discs used in the game but are usually divided into three categories: drivers, mid-range and putting discs.
“Each disc is a little different for what it does. The driver is heavier and the putter is more rounded, giving you more control,” Kehl said.
Udisc is the preferred app to help control the game. It features course descriptions and scoring charts to keep track of the games.
There are several grips and styles for throwing the discs. Backhand and forehand are the most common throwing techniques. The rotation and style of throw will vary from player to player and situation. Each type of throw can achieve the results the player may need to get closer to the basket.
Stroke play is the most common type of scoring. Just like golf each player counts his throws, and the lowest score wins. Like in golf, match play and scramble events are available.
On Labor Day weekend (Sept. 3-5) the local club SLC Tunnel Runners will host a tournament at Valley Regional Park. The registration fees will benefit the club.
The Tunnell Runners club (a locally based group of players) member Charlotte Christensen recently won the 2022 FA40 (female amateur) world championship.