Lazarre Disc Golf Course, West Monroe, Lousiana

I finally got to play the Lazarre disc golf course in West Monroe, Louisiana on Christmas eve. I have always played the Lazarre High Water disc golf course (the Ouachita River has a say here)…

PleaseDriveSafelyI always enjoy a sense of humor, and the Lazarre course starts right off with the old tree in front of the tee box gag. The twist is that they have added a sign! The encouragement seems to work, the tree is not covered with scars from being hit with discs. This course is not well signed and easy to follow. I had to count on the locals to help me out with course navigation on two occasions. There is evidence of course improvements, these do not

Course improvements are ongoing

Course improvements are ongoing

extend to amenities that would make the course understandable to a person from out of town. Being in a flood plain the course is pretty flat. Much of the course is wide open, but the trees that are there are used to good advantage. There is a pretty little bayou that you get to play a couple of holes along and there are a few holes that are in the woods along the Ouachita River.

It is a pretty little bayou, luckily I didn't need to go looking for my disc in it.

It is a pretty little bayou, luckily I didn’t need to go looking for my disc in it.

Overall, this is a very fun 21 hole golf course, but I think I prefer the less-played, scruffier, and more difficult high water course – so I decided to play a few holes of that course before heading back to Christmas festivities. As I was about to make my approach shot to hole 17 of the high water course I heard a loud voice say words that you normally don’t hear on a disc golf course: “STOP OR I’LL

A beautiful wooded hole along the Ouachita.

A beautiful wooded hole along the Ouachita.

SHOOT!!” I had a pretty good drive, but this wasn’t a birdie putt or anything important like that, so I put down my disc and looked around. On the other side of the levee, two police officers were in the process of arresting someone. It didn’t look like anything I wanted to be involved in so I got out there – I have never wanted to be on the TV show COPS.

Not anybodies idea of a fun way to spend Christmas eve

Not anybodies idea of a fun way to spend Christmas eve – not for the police and certainly not for the guy handcuffed face down on the ground.

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Home from the holidays

It is always fun to go visit Kelly’s family for the holidays. This trip was pretty crazy and we

Other golfers enjoying Harrison Road

Other golfers enjoying Harrison Road

ended up staying longer than planned, but it was a great visit and trip. I always enjoy Louisiana: the people, the food, the landscape – it is a very special place for me. However, there is no place like home, and after a week it felt good to stretch my legs on the home course: Harrison Road disc golf course. The first day home (27 Dec 2013) was a gorgeous, warm (40 degrees F) day and there were four other vehicles in the parking lot. It was OK, I can share the course with other people (sometimes). I played really well today – I normally don’t talk about score, because I play for fun, but today was a good score day too (and that can be fun).

My drive on hole 17 shot the gap, but didn’t anhyzer like I wanted. Oh well, no biggie –

This could have been worse, but it would have difficult.

This could have been worse, but it would have difficult.

at least it isn’t in the creek and it should play out of the woods just fine. When I got to where I thought my disc was, it wasn’t there. When I found it, it was in a very bad situation. I flicked an anhyzer shot that amazed me – through the trees and up the fairway. Then I threw an unbelievable approach shot and landed within 4 feet of the basket. After a really bad drive, I had a drop in putt for par on hole 17 at Harrison Road! That is a really big deal. There is no place like home.

Prodigy M3 – Disc Review

Evidently, I was a good enough person that some people gave me disc golf related

This is butter.

This is butter.

Christmas gifts. James and Colin (and the rest of the family) got me an incredible disc golf present to be revealed later and also a golf disc – a yellow, 178 gram, 400 series, Prodigy, M3. Because of the color and the way this disc felt in my hand, I promptly named the disc ‘butter’. By the way, the name ‘butter’ is correctly pronounced buddah. When James, Colin, and I went out to play disc golf that afternoon I took my go-to KC roc out of my bag and replaced it with ‘butter’. On hole one of the Lazarre high water course I had to throw ‘butter’ on a long, accurate hyzer line through trees and ‘butter’ parked under the basket. On hole two I had to have ‘butter’ anhyzer into a basket in a situation from which an overthrow is a catastrophic exploration of the Ouachita River – ‘butter’ hit a rock and had a freak bounce backward, but held the line perfectly.

I have now thrown ‘butter’ on 5 different courses and asked it to do everything from driving to putting and anhyzer to hyzer, I have yet to be disappointed. ‘Butter’ is simply an amazing disc. I can’t throw it more than 200′, but (as my friends will tell you) I can’t throw that far with most discs. When ‘butter’ hits trees (user error – not a ‘butter’ problem), it stores much of the energy of impact and springs away from the tree. This means that you do not end up in a cramped throwing position behind a tree, and can mean that ‘butter’ bounced off and simply carried on with the planned route. Even though I have thrown ‘butter’ into trees and rocks, skipped ‘butter’ off of broken glass and asphalt, and even (occasionally) hit chains with ‘butter’, the disc looks like new and simply feels wonderful in hand. I can only imagine the way this disc feels in warmer weather. I never realized how much confidence disc feel can inspire.

I have never had a disc with a name other than the one printed on it. ‘Butter’ got a name right out of the box. I normally don’t think of plastic golf discs as my friends, but I think ‘butter’ and I will be friends for a long time.

Hideaway Park DGC

Hideaway Park is a disc golf course set in the shadow of the Louisiana Tech football stadium (among the famous people who have played there: Terry Bradshaw and Phil Robertson) I tried to play this course back in 2006, but it was muddy and I was still of a desert mindset and didn’t play disc golf when it was wet. The revisit was triumphant! It is a fun course, but it suffers from some serious flaws: e.g. the ubiquitous and dreaded ‘walking path in play’ and a DRIVE ACROSS A PARKING LOT! I was there on December 23rd and the place was deserted, so these weren’t big issues. I could see that on a fottball game day this course may be unplayable.

The course has good signs and is for the most part easy to follow.

The course has good signs and is for the most part easy to follow.

The course is wooded, but in a park. Trees shape your shots, but there is no understory brush to contend with. However, I was still able to make my own challenges for disc finding on this course. On hole #3 I hit a tree and got a bad treeflection, which put my vintage B-17 out in the middle of the lake. It floats and there was a breeze, so I made a point of checking in on my disc while I

After a long journey on the lake, the B-17 makes landfall.

After a long journey on the lake, the B-17 makes landfall.

played the rest of the course and by the time I had finished, the B-17 was safely on shore!

Another weird shot was on hole #5 where my drive went into a drainage culvert under the walking path. If it had gone much further, I probably wouldn’t have found it.

The ultimate weird disc landing spot was on a hole that had two porta-johns guarding the hole (???). I threw a putter on my approach/long birdie putt and it slid under the porta-john. Luckily, the door of the porta-john faced the basket and I was able to make a legal play of the disc position putting from within the porta-john and sinking the putt to save par. This was a fun course, but I think I got lucky playing it without anyone there.

 

A hard to find drive on the HIDEAWAY course!

A hard to find drive on the HIDEAWAY course!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, that is my putter under the porta-john. Apparently there was no other spot in the entire park to put these things than around this hole...

Yes, that is my putter under the porta-john. Apparently there was no other spot in the entire park to put these things than around this hole…

Hott Shot – over for now.

The Hott Shot event is history. Our club achieved its goal of 50 throwers. The weather was

Actual event photo!

Actual event photo!

35 degrees F and raining in the morning while we were at the high school. When we swapped out to the Martin Recreation Complex for the afternoon shift the weather turned cold and windy and by the time the night shift was ending in my driveway it was spitting snow. This is not optimum weather for a National Championship putting event and did not help us make our numbers.

Here is what I learned from hosting this event:                                                                         1) Even though we had good turn out from the club members, we are a small club. We shouldn’t count on hosting the Olympics any time soon.                                                      2) Over 40% of the throwers in the Hott Shott were female. Our club membership does not reflect this demographic.                                                                                                 3) Not just any old putter will do.                                                                                            4) There are a lot of people in Martin who had never tried or even heard of disc golf – we have some work to do.                                                                                                           5) even under bad conditions, some people are going to have fun.                                    6) Quite a few people gave us ten minutes of their time just because they wanted to help us out – that was pretty nice.

The results  and videos have been submitted to the National Hott Shot USA HQ and we should be hearing from them about how we placed soon. HQ has already told us not to expect payment for videos until February, so the disc golf vacation in the tropics will have to wait until the club gets its $49.

 

Hardly seems like there is any reason for the sun to set now…

Well, glow league is over for 2013 and now night time seems so pointless – I mean what good reason is there for darkness other than throwing glow plastic?. I guess I will get over it by going out on my own and playing nocturnal rounds of disc golf by myself. And I hope that I will be able to survive until 2014 glow league begins. I will try to be strong. I hope you will also.

Still getting ready for Hott Shot on Saturday, 14 December 2013, at the Martin Recreation Complex

Monday, was the video system check. Today’s task in preparing for the Hott Shott event was examining the excel spreadsheets we are to use for registration and scoring. I would have kept score on paper and built a spreadsheet later, so a pre-built sheet is pretty nice. Yesterday, I received a phone call from Alan at Hott Shot asking about our event, so I figured I better give this sheet a test drive.

The sheet has multiple linked pages. We chose not to do an entry fee, so we do not use the payout calculating page (but we could later). Page one is for registration and is pretty straightforward:

Hott1

I could quibble about some aspects, but it is a quite workable data page. The necessary player info transfers to the score page, which also calculates scores and placings. All that needs to happen is for the correct numbers of each disc (1-5) to be entered. You will know your score instantly.

hOTT2

I am really grateful that Hott Shot provided such nice tools for us to use and which should make compiling the data so much easier at their end.

We will be setting up the Hott Shot event 7:30 am to 10:00 am at the Westview High School in Martin, TN to hopefully get some of the runners and spectators at the Westview FFA Annual Reindeer 5/ 10K run to participate in our event. We will also be Hott Shotting under the roof at the Rotary Pavilion at the Martin Recreational Complex (8457 Highway 45E South, Martin, TN) from 11 am to 4 pm. Please come out and throw! We will be thrilled to see you, but even more thrilled if you jam as many people as possible into your vehicle before you come out. See you there!