Exploring the Most Popular Disc Golf Destinations in the United States

Disc golf is a sport that has been gaining popularity in the United States in recent years. It is a sport that is played with a frisbee and is similar to golf, but instead of hitting a ball into a hole, players throw a frisbee into a basket. The sport is played in many different locations across the country, but some areas are more popular than others. In this article, we will explore the most popular disc golf destinations in the United States. From the lush forests of the Pacific Northwest to the sunny skies of the Southwest, we will take a look at the top destinations for disc golf enthusiasts. Whether you are a seasoned pro or just starting out, these destinations are sure to provide a challenging and enjoyable experience. So, get ready to pack your bags and hit the road, because we are about to embark on a journey to discover the best disc golf destinations in the United States.

Understanding the Growth of Disc Golf in the US

The Evolution of Disc Golf

Disc golf, a sport that shares similarities with traditional golf, has been growing in popularity across the United States over the past few decades. This section will explore the evolution of disc golf and how it has transformed into the popular sport it is today.

Early Roots of Disc Golf

The origins of disc golf can be traced back to the 1960s, when the first known disc golf course was established in Oak Grove, California. However, it wasn’t until the 1970s that the sport began to gain recognition and spread to other parts of the country. The early courses were often informal and designed by players who marked out the holes using tree branches and other natural markers.

One of the earliest and most influential disc golf players was a man named Joe Dudy. Dudy was a golfer who was looking for a way to play the sport year-round, even in areas where traditional golf courses were not available. He discovered disc golf and quickly became a proponent of the sport, helping to spread its popularity throughout the United States.

Emergence of Professional Disc Golf

As disc golf continued to grow in popularity, a group of players began to take the sport seriously and started competing in organized tournaments. In 1983, the Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) was founded, and the first official world championship was held in 1985.

Today, the PDGA is the governing body for professional disc golf, and it sanctions events and maintains rules and regulations for players and tournaments. The sport has grown significantly since its early days, with thousands of courses now available across the United States and around the world.

The evolution of disc golf has been marked by several key developments, including the creation of standardized discs and target baskets, the establishment of formal rules and regulations, and the growth of professional leagues and tournaments. Today, disc golf is enjoyed by millions of players of all ages and skill levels, making it one of the fastest-growing sports in the United States.

Factors Contributing to the Popularity of Disc Golf

Increased Interest in Outdoor Activities

The growing interest in outdoor activities is one of the key factors contributing to the popularity of disc golf. As people become more health-conscious and seek new ways to enjoy the outdoors, disc golf has emerged as a fun and engaging sport that can be played in a variety of settings, from urban parks to rural courses. The sport’s accessibility and low cost of entry have also contributed to its growing popularity, as it can be played with minimal equipment and in any location with enough space to throw a frisbee.

Accessibility and Affordability

Accessibility and affordability are also significant factors in the popularity of disc golf. Unlike traditional golf, disc golf courses are typically more affordable to build and maintain, making them more accessible to communities of all sizes. Additionally, disc golf courses can be designed to fit a variety of landscapes and terrain, making them a popular choice for parks and recreation departments looking to provide a new recreational opportunity for their residents.

Media Coverage and Sponsorship Deals

Media coverage and sponsorship deals have also played a role in the popularity of disc golf. With increased coverage of professional disc golf tournaments on channels such as ESPN and the Discovery Channel, the sport has gained a wider audience and increased visibility among both casual and competitive players. Additionally, sponsorship deals with companies such as Innova and Discraft have helped to fund professional tournaments and raise the profile of the sport, further fueling its growth and popularity.

Identifying the Top Disc Golf Hotspots in the US

Key takeaway: Disc golf has become increasingly popular in the United States over the past few decades, with thousands of courses now available across the country. The growing interest in outdoor activities, accessibility, affordability, media coverage, and sponsorship deals have all contributed to the sport’s popularity.

Regional Variations in Disc Golf Popularity

West Coast Disc Golf

The West Coast is known for its stunning natural beauty and a plethora of outdoor activities. Disc golf has become increasingly popular in this region, with courses scattered throughout the states of California, Oregon, Washington, and beyond. The Pacific Northwest is a particular hotspot, with world-class courses like Portland’s Red Tail Course and Vancouver’s Maplewood Course.

Midwest Disc Golf

The Midwest is home to some of the most diverse disc golf scenes in the country. The region boasts a large number of courses, ranging from tight, wooded urban layouts to more open, sprawling designs found in rural areas. Some of the most popular destinations include the famed “Disc Golf Valley” in central Ohio, with courses like the Hocking Hills and the Beaver Creek. Other notable Midwest destinations include the Swope Park Golf Course in Kansas City and the Bridges Course at Mohr Lake in Michigan.

East Coast Disc Golf

The East Coast has seen a significant rise in disc golf popularity in recent years. With its densely populated cities and diverse landscapes, the region offers a wide variety of courses. New York State, in particular, has become a hotspot, with the Disc Golf Course at Jones Beach State Park being one of the most popular destinations. Other notable East Coast courses include the Homestead Inn in Pennsylvania, and the Beaver Meadow Golf Course in North Carolina.

South Disc Golf

The South is known for its warm climate and beautiful landscapes, making it a perfect destination for disc golf enthusiasts. Texas and Florida are home to some of the most popular courses in the region, with Texas having the highest number of courses in the US. The area is also known for its vibrant disc golf communities, with tournaments and events taking place throughout the year. Some of the most notable courses in the South include the Lady Bird Lake Course in Austin, Texas, and the Silver Dollar Disc Golf Course in Pensacola, Florida.

The Most Popular Disc Golf Courses in the US

#1. Inn of the Lost Saints in Colorado

Inn of the Lost Saints, located in Colorado, is considered one of the most challenging disc golf courses in the United States. Set in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, this 18-hole course offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape. The course features tight fairways, strategically placed obstacles, and well-maintained greens, making it a true test of skill for disc golfers of all skill levels.

#2. Smugglers’ Notch in Vermont

Smugglers’ Notch, situated in the picturesque Green Mountains of Vermont, is a popular destination for disc golf enthusiasts. This 18-hole course is known for its unique layout, which winds through the scenic woodlands and along the Lamoille River. The course offers a diverse range of holes, from tight and technical to open and forgiving, making it a great choice for players of all abilities.

#3. DeLaveaga in California

DeLaveaga Disc Golf Course, located in Santa Cruz, California, is one of the most well-known and highly regarded disc golf courses in the United States. This 18-hole course is set amidst the beautiful redwood forests and features a variety of challenging holes, including several that traverse steep ravines and require precise shot-making. The course is known for its demanding layout and well-maintained grounds, making it a must-play destination for disc golfers visiting the West Coast.

#4. Maple Hill in Massachusetts

Maple Hill Disc Golf Course, situated in the hills of western Massachusetts, is a popular destination for disc golfers seeking a challenging and picturesque round. This 18-hole course offers a mix of open and wooded holes, with several that traverse the scenic landscape and require precise shot-making. The course is known for its well-designed layout and challenging terrain, making it a favorite among disc golfers in the Northeast.

#5. Beaver State Fling in Oregon

Beaver State Fling, held annually in Brownsville, Oregon, is one of the most popular disc golf tournaments in the United States. This three-day event attracts top players from around the world and features a challenging 18-hole course set amidst the scenic rolling hills and farmland of the Willamette Valley. The course is known for its demanding layout, with tight fairways and well-guarded greens, making it a true test of skill for even the most experienced disc golfers.

The Future of Disc Golf in the United States

Projected Growth and Expansion

Collaboration with Local Governments

As disc golf continues to gain popularity, local governments are increasingly recognizing its potential to boost tourism and promote outdoor recreation. Many cities and towns are now partnering with disc golf organizations to develop new courses and improve existing ones. These collaborations not only help to fund the construction and maintenance of courses but also raise awareness of disc golf as a sport and recreational activity.

Continued Sponsorship and Media Coverage

Disc golf’s popularity has also attracted the attention of major sponsors, such as Discraft, Innova, and Prodigy, who provide financial support for tournaments and events. Additionally, media coverage of disc golf has expanded, with dedicated television shows, podcasts, and online publications providing in-depth coverage of the sport. This increased exposure has helped to generate interest in disc golf and attract new players to the sport.

Emergence of New Disc Golf Destinations

As more people discover the joys of disc golf, new destinations are emerging across the United States. From small towns to large cities, communities are recognizing the benefits of disc golf and investing in new courses. This growth is driven by a combination of factors, including the increasing popularity of the sport, the economic benefits of tourism, and the desire to provide residents with access to high-quality recreational facilities.

As disc golf continues to grow in popularity, it is clear that the sport has a bright future in the United States. With collaboration between local governments, continued sponsorship and media coverage, and the emergence of new disc golf destinations, the sport is poised for continued growth and expansion.

Challenges and Opportunities for Disc Golf in the US

Environmental Impact and Sustainability

Disc golf courses can have a significant impact on the environment, particularly in areas with fragile ecosystems. To address this issue, disc golf course designers and operators must take a more sustainable approach to course design and maintenance. This includes using native plants, preserving natural habitats, and minimizing the use of chemicals and other harmful substances. Additionally, disc golf organizations must work to educate players about the importance of environmental stewardship and promote responsible behavior on the course.

Diversity and Inclusion in Disc Golf

While disc golf has seen tremendous growth in recent years, there is still a need to make the sport more diverse and inclusive. This includes efforts to promote the sport to underrepresented groups, such as women and people of color, and to create a more welcoming and inclusive environment for all players. Disc golf organizations must also work to address issues of accessibility, including ensuring that courses are accessible to players with disabilities.

Maintaining Quality and Competition in Professional Disc Golf

As disc golf continues to grow in popularity, there is a need to maintain the quality and competitiveness of professional disc golf events. This includes ensuring that courses are challenging and well-designed, and that players have access to top-level equipment and training. Additionally, disc golf organizations must work to promote fair and transparent competition, and to ensure that players are treated fairly and with respect.

In conclusion, while disc golf has seen tremendous growth and popularity in the United States, there are still challenges and opportunities for the sport to continue to thrive. By addressing issues of environmental impact, diversity and inclusion, and maintaining quality and competition in professional disc golf, the sport can continue to grow and attract new players for years to come.


1. What is disc golf?

Disc golf is a sport that involves throwing a frisbee or a disc at a target, similar to golf. It is played on a course with multiple holes, and the objective is to throw the disc into the target with the least number of throws possible.

2. Why is disc golf popular in the US?

Disc golf has gained popularity in the US due to its accessibility and affordability. It can be played in parks, open spaces, and even in backyards, making it easy for people to play without having to invest in expensive equipment or memberships. Additionally, disc golf is a low-impact sport that can be played by people of all ages and skill levels, making it a popular recreational activity.

3. Which states have the most disc golf courses in the US?

As of 2021, the top states with the most disc golf courses in the US are California, Texas, Florida, and North Carolina. California has the highest number of courses, with over 1,000 across the state. Texas has over 700 courses, Florida has over 600 courses, and North Carolina has over 500 courses.

4. What are some of the most popular disc golf destinations in the US?

Some of the most popular disc golf destinations in the US include:
* California: The Santa Cruz area is known for its scenic courses and mild climate, making it a popular destination for disc golfers. The Inn to Inn Disc Golf Course in Ojai is also a favorite among disc golfers.
* Texas: The Austin area has a large number of disc golf courses, including the prestigious “Top Notch” course at the Dell Diamond. The Houston area also has several popular courses, including the Discovery Green park in downtown Houston.
* Florida: The Central Florida area is home to several popular disc golf destinations, including the Inn on the World Golf Village in St. Augustine and the Winter Park Disc Golf Course in Winter Park. The Orlando area also has several courses, including the Universal Orlando Resort.
* North Carolina: The Pinehurst area is known for its world-class disc golf courses, including the Tobacco Road Course at the Carolina Golf Club. The Wilmington area also has several popular courses, including the New Hanover County Arboretum.

5. Are there any professional disc golf tournaments in the US?

Yes, there are several professional disc golf tournaments held in the US each year. The Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) is the governing body for disc golf and sanctions several events throughout the year, including the US Disc Golf Championship and the Disc Golf Pro Tour. These tournaments attract top professional players from around the world and are popular events for disc golf enthusiasts to attend.

Ranking of the Best Disc Golf States in the USA

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