Disc golf versus ball golf
Updated: August 23, 2012 12:30PM
HINSDALE — The game of disc golf is structured like regular golf, but it takes less time and money to play.
The disc golf course in Katherine Legge Memorial Park, and other area parks, are free.
“You don’t have to reserve a tee time,” said Jeff Cortopassi, a Hinsdale resident and longtime disc golf player. “And you can play it a lot quicker than ball golf. Four guys can play an 18-hole course in under an hour. And you get more exercise than riding in a golf cart.”
The plastic discs players throw toward the metal baskets on the course have evolved.
“In the late 1970s, 95 percent of the discs used were Frisbees,” said Steve Matul, a member of the Professional Disc Golf Association. “You basically had to finesse it, to make it go right or left.”
They are still made of plastic, but “there are five different blends and three different manufacturers,” Matul said.
“They’re weighted differently to be able to cut through the air and so you can control it better,” Cortopassi said.
The modifications “change the flight characteristics. The turn is built in,” Matul said.
It’s not uncommon for a regular player to show up with a bag filled with 15 different discs, “for shot selection,” Matul said. “All of a sudden, you’re buying all kinds of equipment and it’s no longer inexpensive,” said the man who estimates he has about 5,000 discs. “I’ve got a golf disc collection,” Matul explained.
A basic disc golf set would include four discs, a putter, an “approach disc,” and two “drivers,” players said. Useful discs cost between $8 and $10, at the low end, Matul said.
But the game can be even simpler than that, Cortopassi said.
“All you need is a Frisbee, a buddy and a bottle of water and you can go have some fun.”