Tag Archives: Southwest Handicap Mini

Disc Golf Physics

Hiral’s birdie putt is on its way to the basket.

Hiral’s long birdie putt is on its way during last Tuesday’s Southwest Handicap Mini.

Action!

Yes!

Success!

Reaction!

Sam jokes around before teeing off at Tom Bass Park.

Sam jokes around before teeing off at Tom Bass Park.

And just plain goofy.

Metal Basket Mania

This close putt is easy for Mike.

This putt is easy for Mike.

Usually when it comes to action photography, I believe that close is best.

Randall hopes to make a par.

Randall hopes to make a par.

But last Tuesday’s Southwest Handicap Mini was at a “new” course, the First Colony Aquatic Center. The quote marks are necessary, because the disc golfers used to play tournaments there until the city decided to add some amenities for its residents. That addition meant a subtraction of certain baskets and a wait of several years until the course was slightly redesigned, including the installation of some new metal.

My younger son zips in a birdie putt.

My younger son zips in a birdie putt.

Now the Aquatic Center is back in the weekly rotation. I hadn’t shot there for a couple years, but I did remember that the baskets tend to be close to one another. So I opted for my beloved Nikon 70-200mm lens, which is equally adapt at delivering those close pics as well as ones that tell more of the disc golf story.

Nick sinks this.

Nick sinks this.

As much as the sport is about the drive and the upshot, a lot of the drama (and, unfortunately, often the trauma) is all about the chains. My Nikon 105mm lens usually is better at focusing on just the player, which is why it stayed home.

Daniel and his shadow putt.

Daniel and his shadow putt.

But this time my photography was all about the baskets.

Can you see the basket way off in the distance? Watch out for the lake!

Can you see the basket off in the distance on the left? Watch out for the lake!

Even the ones that were far away!

Winter’s Last Gasp . . . But Not Really

My younger son hopes his jump putt hits the chains.

My younger son hopes his jump putt hits the chains.

Yesterday was the first day of spring. Here in the Houston area, all that means is that March 20th’s weather was virtually the same as on March 19th—beautiful.

And not cold at all, thank goodness!

Hiral shows his serious putting side.

Hiral shows his serious putting side.

The last day of what passes for winter here found me at Imperial Park at our weekly Southwest Handicap Mini series. This is the best time to play disc golf there, because the foliage is beaten down and thinned out. Discs don’t get lost as often as they do during the summer when the park regains its lushness and is more challenging.

Purple power!

Purple power!

Of course, I’m drawn to Imperial as much for the nature as watching the kid play. As I approached hole seven, my eye immediately was drawn to bright batches of phlox. I’ve seen that wildflower here before but never in such abundance.

Maybe this is foxglove?

Another purple park inhabitant

My Nikon 105mm macro lens captured the few flora that were ready for prime time this early. We should see plenty more, though, in a month or so when the series returns to the ever-blooming park.

A wee spider peeks out from his lantana perch.

A wee spider peeks out from his lantana perch.

Wonder if this guy will stick around?

Disc Golf and Little G

My younger son keeps his eyes on the prize.

My younger son keeps his eyes on the putting prize.

Our annual Southwest Handicap Mini disc golf series began once again Tuesday evening under wonderful mild conditions.

Our fearless leader, Eric

Our fearless leader, Eric

Almost 30 players descended on Community Park in Missouri City to throw plastic at metal baskets.

Marcus’ putt sails towards the basket.

Marcus’ putt begins its journey.

It was nice seeing familiar faces after the several-month layoff. All seemed right with the world once again.

The kid is joined by Glen IV and Glen V.

The kid is joined by Glen IV and Glen V.

But the highlight for me? A little Glen appearance!

Glive now is two years old!

Glive now is two years old!

Can I ever get enough of this cute toddler? No way! His little smile captures my heart.

The golden sunset

Golden gloaming

Just like a gorgeous, glowing sunset!

Spotting Discs and Nature

Imperial Park’s weeds provide an obstacle for Eric.

Our Southwest Handicap Mini disc golf series rotates among several courses from mid-March to late September. After we’ve had lots of rain during the summer, one of those venues—Imperial Park—is so overgrown on three straight holes that spotters are as essential as accurate putting.

So last Tuesday I spent most of the 18-hole round standing in a clear area past the high weeds, potential poison ivy, and especially the hornets’ nest that Marcus’ disc found, watching round plastic sail near me on hole number 7. When one landed in the crud, I would race over and spot where it was for the disc golfer who probably had no idea where in the world it had gone. But, being extremely sensitive to poison ivy, I did not under any circumstances go into the weeds to find the exact location. Not even for my beloved bearded baby boy.

A lost disc is preferable to a miserable month of itching and swelling. Just sayin’.

A shy sunflower peeks out.

In between sighting discs, I had time to also spot some of the beautiful inhabitants of our local park.

Passion flowers are a favorite.

Wildflowers, of course, caught my eye and my Nikon 105mm macro lens.

Love the pretty purple.

Although they weren’t plentiful, the pretty petals lent nice spots of color to the overwhelmingly green landscape.

Purple weedy stuff

Even the weeds were vibrant.

But my favorite find of the evening was a friend who kept me company for the longest time as I scoured the sky for flying discs:

Poser!

A pennant dragonfly! This little guy kept flying around and landing on a small patch of dirt near where I was standing. It seemed like he was trying to get my attention.

I’d say he definitely wanted to be spotted!

If You Want Something Done Right . . .

My younger son contemplates his next throw.

. . . do it yourself!

After lamenting the lack of action photos of my little big boy during last week’s Am Worlds, I was thankful that he and the Mister played in this past Tuesday’s Southwest Handicap Mini weekly tournament.

Jump putt

Now that’s more like it!

It was nice to have my beloved Nikon D700 back in hand, armed and ready to shoot the usual cast of local disc golfing characters.

Eric putts.

Like Eric, the tournament’s terrific director.

Billy lasers the disc towards the basket.

And Billy.

Dale putted well all evening.

And Dale.

The basket is within reach for the Mister’s putt.

And, of course, the ever-lovin’ Mister.

The best part about being there to experience what my younger son was going through (after missing out in Rochester, New York)? I got to see him win! Not only did he post the best raw score, but, despite his handicap, he snagged the overall victory.

Plus I got to scratch my action-shot itch.

Park Buds

The brothers talk disc golf strategy.

Spring break’s theme seemed to be the brotherly bond mixed in with disc golf.

My older son tosses his disc towards the basket.

Not only did my sons have fun playing disc golf in Gonzales on our way home from San Antonio, they also were on the same card as the annual Southwest Handicap Mini began its new season last week. So they experienced the tournament together.

My younger son smiles as he tries to fly in a putt.

It was a winning combination! Thanks to the generous handicap system, my #1 son actually finished in second place. He put $21 in his pocket (#2 earned $6). Cash, exercise, and spending time with your brother—what could be better?

Tristin Lee looks very skeptical.

What could be better for me? Of course, I loved snapping pix of my boys. But it was great to see little Tristin Lee on the course. She’s a year old now and looks like she’s almost ready to start throwing discs with the big guys.

White blossoms start to show off on a bush in the park.

And I loved seeing so many signs of spring in the park.

I wonder what these buds will become.

It seemed like buds were all over the place.

Grown-up pine cones wait for buds to join them.

Some were on the trees and bushes.

The brothers walk to where their tee shots landed.

While others walked, talked, and solidified their brotherly bond. With a little disc golf thrown in for good measure.