It’s no secret that Flagstaff is an incredible place to be if you’re a disc golfer. In fact, in just over a year, Flagstaff will be hosting the world PDA Masters Disc Golf World Championships. And while that topic calls for a blog of it’s own, today we’ll be discussing Disc Golfing Essentials with Alex Stone, Flagstaff Disc Golf Club’s Vice President.
A Disc Golfer’s Story
Behind any sport needs to a passion to play. Alex’s Disc Golfing passion comes from a unique place.
Alex was living and working in LA when the pandemic hit. In addition to pandemic stressors, Alex had a series of other really challenging life events that had him in search of a new home and a new start. When Alex landed in Flagstaff, he was looking for community and healing. After being introduced to disc golf while back at home for a visit, Alex dove head first into the disc golf community here in Flagstaff.
“At first, it was a way to get me off the couch and get me outside to build community,” says Alex. “But now, I’ve made so many amazing friends, the sport has done so much for me.”
A lot of Alex’s love for the sport comes from the community but also the “low barrier to entry.” While some outdoor sports are expensive and require a lesson or a depth of knowledge before you can even begin, disc golf isn’t that way at all. You don’t need much or need to know much to have a good time.
Breaking Down the Essentials
What do you really need to play the sport? Alex gives us the lowdown.
“Two, maybe three discs.” Alex says. While most players carry a bag stocked full of different discs, if you’re just beginning the sport, you simply need a putter, a midrange and a fairway or distance driver. With these three, you’ll be able to make any shot you need to and have fun on the course.
A typical disc is anywhere from $15 – $30 which puts a beginner’s start up price at $45. When you compare this to skiing, climbing, or mountain biking, it’s no wonder the sport is gaining so much traction.
Of course there are other items that make a round of play a lot more enjoyable. If you’re on a course around Flagstaff, it’s likely you’ll want a pretty serious pair of hiking shoes. We suggest Merril, Oboz, Keen or any shoe with a sturdy sole and maybe some ankle support. Some players also prefer approach shoes that grip well on rocks, dirt and grass.
Because disc golf can be played all year round in Flagstaff, your summer and winter outfits will certainly look different. “I like a good base layer in the winter,” Alex mentioned. Baselayers are a tight to the skin, thermal layer that will practically save you from the bitter Flagstaff wind. The best kind of base layers are made of Merino Wool meaning they have incredible insulating and moisture wicking properties.
In the summer, a light sun shirt, a hat and a bottle of sunscreen are the best protectors against the sun. If you plan to be anywhere south of Flagstaff in the warmer months, “a wet cool towel is the secret to not overheating,” Alex testifies.
Most disc golfers carry a disc golf bag. According to Alex, a classic bag’s contents include “10+ discs, more water than you think you’ll need, plenty of beef jerky, sunflower seeds, cliff bars, and sometimes a foldable stool to sit on while your friends take their turn.” For extra long days, Vitalyte or Nuun are both electrolyte boosters you can add to your water. When looking for a disc golf bag, Alex recommends a Dynamic Disks or Innova bag with plenty of pockets.
Joining the Disc Golf Community
So now that you’re fully prepared with the gear knowledge for the course, how do you find someone to play with? Alex says the answer is easy. By joining the Facebook Group Flagstaff Disc Golf Club, you can get connected with flagstaff players and see when players are heading to a course. Alex frequently even takes out of town visitors for a round of disc golf after connecting on the Facebook page. You can also checkout the club’s website here.
Regardless of the gear you have when you hit the course, Alex stresses that this outdoor sport has the power to help you get connected to really incredible people. “I’ve never met someone in the disc golf community that I didn’t like, everyone is kind and generous, it’s the best.” Alex says.
As a local outdoor store, Peace Surplus hopes to provide you with the gear you need but more importantly, help you connect with a community of people who are willing to help you learn more about disc golf. Additionally, Peace Surplus has pledged to financially support the Disc Golf Club in their tournaments throughout the year. We hope this support leads to more people enjoying their time outside, taking care of the disc golf courses and building the disc golf community.
Interview with Alex Stone, Written by Amy Auble