Schenectady

I was all but convinced I’d never come close to correctly spelling the name of this fine city. As it is, I have typed it into the googles often enough, and been corrected as many times, that I now have it down.

Big day for disc golf here in the Capital District. Things always change. A year ago I would never have never passed a summer July Sunday without putting a leg over a bicycle. Happened today. The pendulum will swing back to the bicycles. It has many times before and it will again. Just now, though, I am madly in love with the plastic disc throwing thing.

Played 18 at Joralemon in the morning with Jay (scored a 71 which would have had me swelling with pride two months ago, but now it just feels like a fine result) and then 18 at Schenectady’s Central Park course with Lacey in the afternoon (scored a 74 without trying too hard and really enjoyed not having a history against which to judge the result).

First time at the Central Park course and I was very pleasantly surprised. Schenectady’s course is about a month old, but it is already very well sorted out. Great tees, signs and goals. My first impression is that it is easily as fun and as challenging as Joralemon. Also, Schenectady has some fringe benefits that may give it an edge. More on that later.

I was apprehensive about playing a course threaded through a very active park in the middle of a city, but the course planners did a fantastic job creating varied and challenging holes which for the most part keep disc throwers away from populated areas. A few times we ran up ahead on holes with blind lines to make sure no one was picnicking around the corner. I hope others do the same. So easy to assume all is clear, especially if you are used to playing at Joralemon where 99% of the time the disc golfers are the only ones there.

Some holes make very good use of the heavy woods. Some let you open up your arm a bit for big chucks. Some go up. Others, down. Streams are crossed (or in my case waded into to retrieve a disc). Views of tennis players, baseball players and a rose garden are a treat. Next time I am playing in swim trunks so I can swim at the beautiful and huge pool after the game. I also enjoyed the proximity to downtown Schenectady for after game food. Today we had lunch at Bombers and enjoyed the cool AC and free refills of orange soda. If burritos are not tickling your fancy, there are many other options.

Before I played Schenectady, I was pretty sure I would prefer Joralemon hands down. Now that I have played Schenectady, it will absolutely be added in the mix. Besides having a wonderful course, Schenectady is only 10 miles from my home instead of 20 to Joralemon. I can get there by bicycle and bus (although we drove today). Bicycle alone would be great, but the only direct route is a very unfun Central Avenue route. Speed limit is forty, but many go much quicker. I’d rather put my bicycle on the bus for the Central Avenue portion of the trip. Schenectady also wins the after play options competition hands down. Met Kenji, a board member of the nonprofit that set up the course, as we played. He was cleaning up a fairway. Very nice fellow.

If you are in the area, you should definitely throw a round at either course. Call me first, though. I will come along if I am free. I hope I see you out there soon.

Want to practice before you come, but don’t know where your local courses are?  Check out this great disc golf course locator set up by  Disc Golf Station.

[All pictures are unrelated to the post and all are in Delhi, New York. Seeing my Specialized Stumpjumper, which resides in Delhi, reminds me how well that bicycle cleans up and how fun it is to ride. I have to get there to clean it up and turn the pedals all over the mountain!]

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