For me, it's often about "feel" because I generally know my discs well. In general, I feel confident throwing discs like a Firebird, Hornet, xXx, Trident, and Zone whether there is wind or not, and regardless of wind strength or direction. I've learned to adjust the trajectory to compensate for the prevailing wind. But in other cases, it's not so simple!
For example, this past weekend, I was playing in a tournament where 4-6 holes were strongly affected by wind coming off of lakes or ponds; I hadn't played the course before. I was warming up for the second round with someone I knew. Hole #10 is an open hole with a water carry of about 225' to the front edge; the hole plays 285' total. He said, "Just wait until that headwind comes off the lake here this afternoon." I said, "I'm going to throw Buzzz, probably." He thought I was crazy, because in his experience, he was sure I would flip my Z Glo Buzzz into the lake, and he suggested that I might even go more overstable, to a Hornet or maybe even a Firebird. But I know the flight of that Buzzz so well, I released with a little hyzer, popped it out there, and that disc went dead straight and resulted in a CTP about 2 feet away from the pin. I *knew* I was going to nail that shot with that Buzzz, even if would be a terrible disc choice for someone else.
On the next hole, with a slight right to left headwind but at a longer distance, I decided on a Firebird for a 300' spike hyzer. I just released it out wider than usual, knowing that the crosswind would catch under the flight plate and push the disc left harder on the fade. Ended up about 20-25 feet short, but with a putt. I probably could have thrown the Buzzz again. Or a Hornet, or even a Teebird. But I just FELT that the Firebird was the right disc.
Much of it is knowing your discs. Like another poster said - go outside and throw in the wind. Or the rain. Or the cold. Practice with a variety of discs on flat, hyzer, and anhyzer releases (even thumber or tomahawks if that interests you) in all types of conditions - calm, windy, wet, dry, snow, hot, humid, cold - until you've essentially thrown almost every shot possible in almost every possible condition. Then you'll know what you CAN and probably SHOULD do when you encounter a similar situation in a round.
. 2013 US Amateur Doubles Champion!
Next tourney: BRAWL Event #1 at Montgomery Hall Park, Staunton, VA, December 21.
Last edited by KenTyburski; 02-13-2013 at 10:49 PM.