Hung out last night with the soft-spoken Jeff Schwass at his (Cherry/apple/asparagus) farm. After another 5 hour session working on the blah’g, processing photos, catching up on email and making phone calls, I
took some back roads to Mason County Park.
I started my round at “The Beauty” (#901) at exactly 1pm. As if perfectly on cue, the fog started rolling in from Lake Michigan. At first I thought it might be smoke from someone’s barbecue but I was thinking “Geez, there’s an awful lot of it”
The Beauty’s opening holes lived up to their namesake. The wooded holes had been logged and chipped 2 years ago, which forced the Mason County Disc Golf Organization to implement several changes, which are not yet complete. It was projected that I would finish in an hour, but since there was a high % of blind holes, that meant I had to run up and look for each pin. I did take a few extra shots but it took 2 hours and 45 to finish.
Stepping up to the basket after a blind drive to see this? —>
Now THAT’S beauty
The Beast course? Another day, perhaps. The 24th Farm Classic at Flip City in Shelby, MI awaits.
Regional standard practices tend to mold people’s ideas as to what should be considered normal or proper. Michiganders tend to favor 24 hole courses, which is cool by me. The more the better. But I kinda wish they’d just do it numerically instead of dropping in letter holes. I’m confused enough on a regular basis, I don’t need help in that regard. And because they’ve added holes, it looked as if the numbers on the baskets were not consistent.
Along with the normal aches and pains that you would expect to be associated with playing 70+ courses in a month, I’ve developed another you might not expect. My big toes have blood blisters from tripping on the invisible stumps on fairways. As I found out several times on the new Lemon Lake Silver course, these are referred to as “Jimmies”. Obviously, there’s a back-story there but I was too busy trying to play and not break my toes to ask.
A disc golfer told me that I should wait to play Flip City for my 1,000th course because after that, I won’t want to play anywhere else. A slight exaggeration perhaps, but there was merit to his assertion. Flip City (#902) is a gem! Owner Bill McKenzie bought the 80 acres in 1980 and started on the 37- acre course that summer. You want to build a really sweet course? It only takes 28 years!
Before walking out on the course I thanked Bill for the amount of work I KNOW it takes to build/maintain a personal course. When I came back in after my first round I approached him and said, “You know that comment I made earlier about appreciating your hard work? Quintuple that!”
I’m so glad that my first impression of FC-dgc was with the brand new tee pads with a round extra follow-thru area. Nice! This course is manicured immaculately with rock gardens all over the course. The “Jimmys” are plentiful on the course but nearly all of them are capped by large rocks, which tends to make them look like large mushrooms. More ornamental than obstacles, these mushrooms decorate most of the fairways. The rock moving alone was more work than building an entire course in most places. He used to mow it with a PUSH mower, which took 63 HOURS. This is on top of having a 40-hour a week job. (Stop and ponder that for a moment)
If there is a rating above “A+”, Flip City deserves it. There is a “vibe” here that you won’t find in a park. I think it could safely be called a reverence.
Flip City dgc is not just a disc golf course, it is a destination!
Tomorrow: The 24th annual Farm Classic at Flip City (Master’s)