7 Helpful / 0 Not
Got to throw shots in Yellowstone
- Disc Golf in a National Park. The National Park Service's mission is:
To preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the national park system for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.
Because of the resource damage associated with disc golf (discs hitting trees, erosion of fairways, social trails associated with finding plastic, wildlife disturbance, etc…), disc golf has not been an allowed recreation opportunity within our National Parks - it's part of that "preserve unimpaired" part of the mission.
Before you get all upset about that concept, think about this… you can't take a dog for a walk down a dirt trail inside most of our National Parks… you can't ride a mountain bike down a dirt trail in a National Park… you can't hunt, mine, gather anything besides berries or mushrooms, or do anything else that would alter the experience of other visitors both today and in the future.
Therefore, the idea that Yellowstone, our first National Park (1872), has a disc golf course within its boundaries is amazing to me. But, that's about where the Pros stop for this course.
- No Map = Go See the Rest of the Park. I went to the hotel, like the directions said, and asked the bell hop for a map of the course. They didn't have any. But, since I've been able to get through courses in the past without a map, I decided to go for it anyway. The bell hop described where to go and I found what I thought was the first hole's tee-pad… a natural tee with logs laid out on three sides. I played that hole which went to a basket. I easily found the next tee-pad and basket too. After the second basket, I found what appeared to be the third tee-pad… but, I couldn't locate a basket for it. While scouting, I found an employee in a little village and he told me the third target was the fire hydrant. He then showed me the next hole which also went to a fire hydrant and the next hole which went to an electrical box. He then told me about the hole with the leaning tree as a target and told me that several holes shared targets. That's pretty much when I decided that walking around trying to figure this course out would be a waste of my time since there was so much else to see in the Yellowstone. I played the fire hydrant and electrical box holes and left.
- Overall… I'm glad I got to throw some shots inside a National Park, and Yellowstone at that. However, with that said, I would not recommend that anyone waste their time trying to play this course (unless they work there) as opposed to seeing the rest of the sites in the park. It's just not worth it. The hour+ I spent walking around could have been the difference between my buddy and I seeing the pack of wolves or not. If I had tried to finish the course, we would have missed them. But instead, we ditched the course and went sightseeing - which is what you're supposed to do in Yellowstone anyway. We saw Old Faithful, other geothermal features, elk, bison and a pack of wolves.
- My Disc Score. I realize that my disc score is way different than the other reviewers below me... all I can say is they either had a map or a guide. I think my score of 1.5 is a gift based on my experience there.
- Old Faithful. To me Old Faithful was kind of a bust - not that exciting really. But, at least I can say that I've seen it. The other geothermal features on the trail there were far more impressive than the eruption itself.
- Other Geothermal Features. The Grand Prismatic Pool was awesome, as was the Opal Pool (right next to the GPP). I would recommend stopping there and seeing that.
- Hayden Valley… was a hotbed for wildlife. We saw two herds of elk, several hundred bison and a pack of wolves. To find the wildlife, simply drive along the roads until you see a traffic jam, pull over and get out of your car (if safe). Lots of people were at this one particular overlook near sunset (which we would have missed had we tried to complete the course). Several visitors had spotting scopes trained on a pack of wolves which were probably ¾ of a mile off in the distance. 4 black ones and a coyote-colored one. Pretty awesome experience.
- Lamar Valley and the Bear Tooth Range. From what I understand, (we didn't have time to do this route), the Lamar Valley is the best place to see wildlife, especially Grizzly Bear and Moose. And, the drive into or out of the park over the Bear Tooth Range is supposed to be the most beautiful drive in America. Enjoy.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This is the course where I learned to play DG. This course has it all, Tunnels, plenty of elevation changes, lots of chances to air out and lots of technical shots. Oh and watch out for wildlife, nevermind the bison or elk it's the porcupine you have look out for. This is just an amazing course to play.
Cons: Easy to lose a disc here, you definitely need a local guide,
Other Thoughts: This is an employee course so go with an employee, they're mostly real friendly to visiting Disc Golfers and will be happy to show you the course if you just ask. Also this is really a challenging course that will highlight what disc golf is all about. Many people don't like the lack of baskets, you're in a national park, this course is rugged and fitting for the terrain. Where else could a course survive for almost 15+ years mostly marked with sticks and rocks. If you find yourself in Yellowstone and you do have discs play this course you'll love it.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 3 Not
Great course for the location
Pros: The only course in Yellowstone National Park with baskets, so that counts for something. The scenery and wildlife make it an amazing adventure, as you never know when bison, deer, elk, or even a bear may walk through the course.
Cons: All holes except 2 and 12 are par 3; 2 and 12 are par 4. You reuse the same basket 3 times. I strongly dislike object courses.
Other Thoughts: This is overall a fun course with others, but by yourself it really is not that enjoyable to me. I do however recommend that if you get to to head out to Yellowstone that you play this course, just so you can stare out at the Lake and say, " I just played disc golf in Yellowstone National Park."
3 of 6 people found this review helpful.
21 Helpful / 1 Not
National Park Goodness!!!!
Pros: *************RANDOM NOTES*************
-This course is in a National Park. Please ask Bell Desk at Hotel for permission to use & map. Do NOT litter, disturb wildlife, plants, or other park users while playing. Abusing the course will result in it's removal.
-It's a course in Yellowstone!!!
-Large variety of shots & angles considering small area of course.
-Four baskets. In a National Park!
-Plays quickly for multiple rounds.
-Bench and cigarette butt can located at awesome viewpoint visited several times during play.
-Natural unmaintained fairways really are spectacular for having no human influence.
Cons: Most cons are typical logistical issues such as:
-Most holes are object targets.
-Many holes use the same fairways multiple times, difficult for more than two groups to be using at once.
-Some holes use the same target/basket.
-No OB (including roadways), and no mandos.
-Natural tees, but are usually marked.
-Some holes play across and down roads that ARE used by park-goers.
Other Thoughts: This is a beautiful course set around and on top of a dense spruce pine forested hill overlooking Lake Yellowstone and the Lake Yellowstone Hotel. The high elevation at 7800 feet can make otherwise easy holes a new challenge for those used to playing at lower elevations. Natural fairways dominate the majority of the holes, with some open downhill/uphill shots.
Most would consider the course to be short, as most holes are obtainable for a birdie shot if played correctly. That being said, if your disc knocks a tree and heads into the woods, you will be shooting for bogey or worse in a hurry.
While designed by non professionals, there really is a huge variety to be had while playing. A few holes feel a bit repetitive, but being able to play an established course in a National Park more than makes up for it.
Most variety is found at the beginning. The course starts with an uphill tunnel to a target, followed by a long, narrow downhill tunnel with dense woods on either side.
A few open shots follow eventually leading to a tricky right turning fairway with a narrow window before the right hand turn. Navigation becomes difficult at this point and to follow the course correctly, you will need a map or guide. All errant throws are rewarded with dense woods that require at least one shot to escape.
The course opens up about halfway through with a great downhill shot with million dollar views. It eventually works its way back to the basket portent of the course before heading back downhill via a fantastic double fairway toward cabins.
The last few holes are in a developed area with some dangerous OB's, such as cabins, parked vehicles, and a trash dumpster. Not to mention a few more right turning fairways which are particularly challenging for me. Take caution before throwing as several of these holes are blinds.
It is a luxury to be able to play this course while visiting the area and is truly one of a kind. A bench near several of the holes/tees provides views only Yellowstone can provide. Please treat this course with respect so others can play it for years to come.
21 of 22 people found this review helpful.
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