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What Is A Disc Golf Course?

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If you’ve never played disc golf before, you might be asking yourself “What is a disc golf course?”

Disc golf courses are designed to play disc golf on. Most have either 9 or 18 holes.

Each hole should challenge the disc golf player in a different way, like requiring that the disc move right to left or forcing the player to throw down a tunnel.

These are just examples of course. There are many different obstacles and tactics a disc golf course designer can use to challenge players.

Some of these include water hazards, mandatory flight paths, and elevation changes.

Most disc golf courses are located in the great outdoors and use natural objects like trees and creeks to challenge players even further. 

Unlike traditional golf courses, most disc golf courses require far less upkeep and are cheaper to build and maintain.

While this is normally the case, it’s not uncommon to see disc golf baskets on golf courses where partitions have the option to play both.

There are also some disc golf courses where designers have converted old golf course into a place for disc golf to be played.

But enough about the possibilities, let’s take a look at the major components of a disc golf course.    

What Is A Disc Golf Course

Major Components Of A Disc Golf Course

Now that we’ve covered the basics when it comes to disc golf course let’s take a deeper look at the main components.

While this is by no means a definitive list of all the components you might find on a course, we’re just going to stick to the main ones that most courses have.

Tee Pad

This is where all disc golf holes begin. The tee pads are where you throw your drive from or your first shot on the hole.

They can be made of dirt, rock, concrete or rubber, really any material where you can get a firm standing for your run-up.

They are usually marked by a sign that communicates the hole number and gives a good idea of the layout of the hole.

Some courses even have multiple tee pads for a whole to increase the variability of play.  


The fairway is the portion of the hole that connects the tee peed to the putting green.

While in golf you can spot this by the close-cut grass, in disc golf this piece isn’t normally as well maintained.

It can be a wipe open nicely mowed field or possibly a smaller opening that cuts throw a wooded area.

Regardless of which, the fairway should provide at least a few good routes a player can take to reach the green with their discs. 

Putting Green 

The ultimate goal of each hole is to reach the green. This is the ending area of the hole where the disc golf basket is located.

The object of disc golf is to each the green and ultimately get your disc in the basket in the least amount of throws possible.

A lot of times the green will by wide open giving the disc golf an unobstructed look at the basket inside the putting circle.

This is not always the case. Some green contains close hazards or obstacles like trees.

On these holes, players will need to lay their shots in the right potion or riks dealing with these. 


If we want to get technical when playing in a tournament a hazard is an area determined by the tournament director that if a player lands in this area they will receive a penalty stroke.

Check out the rules on this by going to the PGDA website.

For more casual play, hazards are usually marked on the tee sign or decided by the group you are playing with.

More the most part, this is usually a pond or lake in your park that you will want to miss away one.

Hazards can also include sand traps or other areas the park may not want to throw your discs.   

Where Are Disc Golf Courses Normally Located?

The vast majority of disc golf courses in the united states are located in a park or other public area where anyone is allowed to come and play.

Depending on the size of the park and the town or city responsible for it, it may determine the size of the disc golf course and the number of holes it contains.

There are private disc golf courses that are closed to the public or that require a fee to play. But these are less common.

You may also find golf courses that have included disc golf baskets on their putting greens that allow disc golfers to come and play on.

You can find disc golf courses it a lot of different areas.

There as some located in caves, on the sides of mountains and even temporary urban courses that pop up.  

Where Can I Find A Disc Golf Course In My Area?

If you aren’t sure if a disc golf course is located in your area there are plenty of websites dedicated to this very topic.

Disc golf course review and disc golf scene are two great sites for this.

They both have large databases of disc golf courses in many areas and even provide rankings for each.

You can also just google disc golf courses near me for a great list of nearby disc golf courses.

Finally, a great option is just to ask the disc golfers you know.

They will be able to tell you the best places to play and they might even come with you and give you some pointers. 

Does It Cost Anything To Play?

If the disc golf course you want to play on is located in a park or other public area, it normally doesn’t cost anything to play.

This is the vast majority of disc golf courses in the united states and is one of the reasons the sport is exploding here.

Like I’ve already mentioned, there are private courses that might charge a fee.

You might want to call ahead or check the course’s website just to make sure.   

Flickr Image Creative Commons Credit – billsoPHOTO

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