Playing Texas State University’s West Campus Park one night with my buddy, I achieved a feat thought to be most impossible. The sun set on our round long about hole 13. Now on #17, we’re just trying to hurry up and go home. For those of you that haven’t played the new layout, 17 tees from Ranch Road 12 and shoots down a 250 ft. tunnel of disc grabbing live oak trees only to take a 90 degree left dogleg for 75 feet through two mature oaks to a heavily guarded basket. Route after route I’ve tried to make that turn to set up a long birdie.
Well tonight, in the dark, and I’ll get back to that history making I was talking about earlier in a minute, I try a big S-Curve that will fade back across the turn and jump in the basket. (why not, here’s to hoping). In fact, a par will give me my best round out here by a single stroke. Ryde or dye baby. I throw a FLX Surge off of the tee and start it out to the left and it turned over as expected. Period. End of shot. No flexing back tonight. As described I’m now nestled (euphemism for I have no clue where my disc is) in the live oaks and the rock boulders that line the hill on the right. After a short search, we find the disc. I’m roughly pin high and about 150 ft out and elevated above the basket by oh how about 15 ft.
Hey, here’s a plan. Throw your ESP Avenger that is bright yellow, you know, so you will be able to find it really easy. My only shot option was overhand, so I do an easy thumber that is supposed to jump in the chains for an easy two. As you can tell already, logic and reason have weighed heavily into my shot selection thus far on 17, so here I go with an unsafe, barely balanced upshot thumber above 40 foot trees. Well I make a great shot (except for that tree of course). I immediately begin searching for my disc by checking the chains. (aw man, just missed em!) So we begin searching for it in the limbs. The brush. The branches. The leaves. Okay now I’m a little peeved cause I ain’t finding it. I climb the tree and start looking. I’m about 15 feet off the ground and in the dark and shaking limbs (more evidence of my affinity for intellectual thought.
After 15 minutes, my pal heads for my truck to get some flashlights. Luckily a dim stream of “light” was peering out of one of them so I could try to find the disc. Brent heads back and decides to put the headlights on the tree. Helps but still no dice. He goes back to the truck and seems up to something but I don’t ask. I’m just too frustrated and stubborn to give up this disc. THEN I SAW IT!
Much to my dismay the disc is 25 ft up this behemoth of a tree. So, here I start in with the rock throwing. No friend in sight. Where is that guy? Chunking more rocks. Finally I see headlights pulling up the fairway. I’m a little worried until I realized it was my truck that my friend had driven onto the course to shine the lights closer. Now we’re in business. After a few America’s Funniest Home Video-esque moments of stupidity, like throwing rocks in the direction of my new truck, or like throwing rocks in the dark that land a foot in front of you when they come crashing to the ground, I finally make some contact. Darn, nothing. Then BAM I nail the disc smack in the middle. I wait for it to fall. Wait where is it?????? After a brief search, I spotted the disc. Still in the tree. Higher than before. *There are no words to describe the rapidity with which my heart sank in this moment* HOW IS IT EVEN PHYSICALLY POSSIBLE FOR THIS TO HAPPEN?!?
To make a long story slightly shorter, I will wrap it up. It took about 10 more frustrated and hilarious minutes to knock it back down to earth where my ego had been lying dazed from its earlier collapse. Disc in hand, we make it out of the course unnoticed. Didn’t lose any plastic and managed to avoid bodily harm despite foolish ideas like tightroping atop branches. Moral of the story-think twice before throwing into hundred year old trees, always bring working flashlights, shoot smart in the dark, start the round earlier, put glow lights on the disc before throwing it in the dark, throw a GLO Stalker instead, take the high percentage shot, and let’s be honest this list could go on for a while.
Although it was quite memorable, I’m not really begging for another scene like this anytime soon. Nevertheless, see ya on the course!
Disc is how we do it.