USDGC - "Carolina Flyer"

It's now Sunday night.  My knee is throbbing, my back is tight, my feet are sore, and I have HUGE smile on my face!  The plan for Sunday was to play a round at the famous Renaissance Gold disc golf course.  We did that, then after eating lunch and relaxing for an hour at the vacation house, we were hungry for my Carolina fairways!  54 holes later, I'm sitting on the couch with, as stated, a rather sore body, a glass of wine, and Sunday Night Football on the big screen.



JetPlane!

RL Smith Park

Chandler's Lie at Renny

Happy Sasquatch!

Towers

From the Shule!

Jeff at Angry Beaver

Renny Hole #2

What a great day!  But before I get into today, I need to recap Friday and Saturday...

Chandler decided to make the drive down from Olympia, Wa, on Friday so that he didn't have to leave his house at 1am to meet Jeff and I at PDX.  Chandler crashed at my house and Chris (my wonderful wife) cooked us a great send-off dinner. Thanks Chris!  At 4am, we headed off to pick up Jeff and continue to the airport for our 6am flight.  I remember Chandler trying to talk to me before we left the house and he was just babbling non-sensical words, it was a litte early.  The cool thing about leaving at 6am from Portland is that even with the time change, we were able to arrive in Charlotte by 5pm, plenty of time to go play a course before heading to our vacation house.  We chose to play Robert L Smith Park, mostly because it was just a couple miles north of the airport, so it took us less than 10 minutes to get there.  Great choice!  The course was a wonderful intro course for the weekend.  Tons of fun trick shots, a couple of long holes, and many inventive shorter holes.  Also, there was a lot of elevation and many of the greens were placed within natural rock outcroppings.  You can tell the locals are proud of the course with all the work that has gone into the benches, and custom landscaping around the tee pads..  We didn't play too well, but we're gonna blame that one on jet-lag.  :)

After the round we headed south to Fort Mill, South Carolina, where our vacation rental is.  Back in spring when we were planning this trip I found the house through AirBnB.  If you've never used AirBnB I HIGHLY suggest it when travelling.  It's basically a service that allows property owners to rent out their apartment / house/ cabin or whatever.  The rentals posted on the site are all over the world and range from a couch in someone's living room, all the way up to full blown estates.  We scored a three bedroom house with laundry facilities, a spacious livingroom, fully-stocked kitchen, etc. for less than $100 a night!  BOOM!  Check it out...www.airbnb.com

This putt was for EAGLE on Renny Gold #2.  Stupid crazy good drive



Our goal for Saturday was Renaissance Gold.  Renny Gold is one of the most famous courses in Disc Golf.  I've spent hours watching the top pros play this course on DVDs throughout theyears.  I was REALLY excited to get a chance to throw it myself.  The "Gold" course is overlayed on top the normal course and is a monstrous par 70.  About 3/4 of the course is very long, VERY tight fairways through what I call "Carolina Stick Trees".  The forests here are different than in the NW.  Our fairways can be tight and challenging, but if you get off our fairways you usually have a chance at an "out" shot to save par.  Renny is a bit different.  The trees here are a mix of medium (18" diameter) to tiny stick trees that aren't more than an inch thick.  And there are thousands of the small ones.  When you really get off the fairways it seems nearly impossible to get a shot out with any significant forward progress.  Good stuff!  Renny took us about 3 hours, with no one in front of us.  The hype of this place is valid, if you have a chance to play, make it happen!

Hole #16 Renny

Jeff between courses

I swear we didn't put that there!

After all three of us were on cloud 9 we headed back to the house (after a lunch stop) to take it easy.  We ate lunch, and then watched some football.  The problem is we had so much fun at Renny that we had to play more golf....Off to Elon Park to play the Stan McDaniel designed "Angry Beaver".  Angry Beaver was installed in 2011, according to dgcourseview.com.  You can tell that it's a more recent course for two reasons; it's still under a bit of construction, and it has some modern elements in the course design.  Again, the course did not disappoint.  The three of us were battling eachother, as well as the course.  I don't think there was more than 4 strokes separating all three of us through this tight, and again long par 66 course.  Jeff and I had to give Chandler a hard time!  Chanman kept getting seriously luck throughout the round, we rode him pretty hard about it.  On hole 15 he hit a tree right off the tee pad that kicked his drive back into the middle of the fairway on this par 4 470' downhill hole.  When we reached our discs Chanman was about 80' out.  Someone made a comment to the affect of "You have to eagle this, especially after hitting that tree off the tee".  And well, of course he hit the dang putt! Nice eagle Chandler!  Of course course I lost my 1 stroke lead, and the tee honors, with my pathetic birdie 3.  

"Patent Pending" upshot at the Angry Beaver.



On the next hole we played through a couple of guys taking a break.  The shot happened to be a lefty hyzer, and of course one of the dudes tried to convince us that Angry Beaver was a lefty course (if you know me, you know this irritates me :). We all went on to par the next couple holes and then arrived a thole 18, the 850', dog-leg right, par 5.  This was the most open big hole on the course, with a comfy 60' wide fairway.  Chandler and I were tied at a couple under par.  Jeff was a couple strokes back after spending a bit of extra time in the rough a few holes prior.  HOLY MOLY was Chanman's drive massive.  I don't know how far he threw, but his disc made the corner, which was about half of the hole, AND landed in the fairway. His shot must have been around 470' and finished fading right, think about that for a while!  I went on to play three solid shots for a relatively easy birdie.  Meanwhile, Chander's inhuman drive set him up for about a 380' hyzer for a second shot. His shot looked good but was coming in a bit hot, as [his] luck would have it, his driver skipped hard right by the basket and as it was headed for OB it smashed into the trunk of a tree, for a 15' putt at another eagle.  Of course he canned it, FTW! Nice round Chandler!

40' putt at R.L. Smith park



As we were walking back to the car I half-heartedly suggested that we play the "Eager Beaver" course, which is a pitch-and-putt course that is in the same park as Angry Beaver.   Jeff jumped on board and so did Chandler.  We dumped a bunch of unnecessary plastic at the car and headed out for 18 holes of super fun, fairly technical tee shots, and plenty of shenanigans.  Jeff started the round out with 4 birdies in a row, then bogied a 179' hole.  A couple holes later I made a joke in his back swing, causing a bogie on a 174' hole.  Sorry Jeff, I'm a jerk, I know.  The round was a great "cooldown" round after playing the strenous Renny Gold and Angry Beaver courses.  There were numerous ace runs, each one of us had a turkey, and the round took about an hour, maybe less.  

Eager Beaver w/ Lake

Not sure what to say?

Chandler discovers the "fisheye" on his camera!

SIDE NOTE:  Chandler is sitting in the chair across from me and just scatted the first line of Michael Jackson's "Beat It".  He's been doing a ton of scatting after watching the "What does the fox say" music video Friday night (If you don't know what I'm talking about, google search for "What does the fox say" and prepare to pee your pants)  I think he's in the zone!?

After the 54th hole of the day we headed out for some fantastic Mexican cuisine, which we all consumed ravenously.  And...that pretty much wraps up the day.

Tomorrow is USDGC Qualifiying Monday.  Each year, the USDGC staff save 5 spots into the "Open Flight" for people to try to qualify on Monday.  Read my previous USDGC post for more info into the difference between the "Open" and "Performance" flight.  Chandler and I are going attempt to qualify to play in the Open flight, and Jeff has graciously agreed to caddy for me, which after playing 18 holes Saturday, and 54 holes today will be a great help.  Chandler's been playing really well lately and I think he's got a good chance at grabbing one of the spots.  And...I'm super streaky so there's always a chance I could shoot a hot round and make it.  Even if I don't make it in, the round will be great practice for day one of tournament play on Wednesday.

Ok.  I need to ice my knee, and drink another glass of wine.  Cheers!

-Tenacious G

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