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Sunday, October 29, 2017

Disc Golf Road Trip 2017

Road Trip to play disc golf:

The Rear Admiral got a new (to him) car and proposed a 4 day road trip with the McGuffin (a Hitchcock term meaning what the plot revolves about) of playing 18 holes a day while seeing the country and testing the new ride.

He put out the four days on the calendar and I signed up with no idea where we were going.  In the end it was just two retired big guys going where ever the car was pointed.  People would ask us where we were going and we would have to tell them "disc golfing".  Most times they would need an explanation of that sport.

Road tripping is an art form of tolerance for your fellow passengers, the weather, the car, roads, diners, etc...  Done correctly, none of those items are a hardship, in fact they all enhance the experience.  There is a caveat called the "7 Ps" which came to me through a friend in his first year of engineering school at the UW.   Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.

The Rear Admiral had done some research on disc courses and coupled with the concept of finding the sun and my thought of going east of the Cascades ASAP he had both Count Ferrari and the Rear Admiral rolling along at mid day on a Monday heading over Highway 90 to points East!

Our route in broad strokes
Disc Golf Courses:

Dawson Park in Suncadia:  Cle Elum, 9 holes, gated entrance no worries, gorgeous, we played it on the way over and then again on the way back.
Downriver:  Spokane, 18 holes, along river with hills and pines, gorgeous
Sunset Park:  Lewiston, 9 holes, park setting with hills and nice lawn, view was amazing
Hell's Gate State Park:  Lewiston, 9 holes, no map of course, #5 target is out of sight behind trees to right, along river
Fort Walla Walla:  Walla Walla, 18 holes, map on line, long
Wide Hollow:  Yakima, 9 holes (going to 18 soon), in a park setting with lawn and grooming.


The car was a question mark for the Count.  A Chrysler?, granted it was nearly the highest end luxo ride that car company makes.  A 300 C, model year 2014 with 27,000 miles on it.   The 300 S is the only step up from this apparently and we did see one of those during the trip.  If we had an  air bag suspension it might have been better and the shifter could easily have been better. but the 300C was AMAZING.
The 300 C Chrysler at the Taco Bus in Yakima

Previous vehicles for road trips, from most recent to earlier trips were:
(for a visual aid on what these vehicles look like, you can click here and scroll about)
Mercedes Benz S-500, 2001
Cadillac Seville, 1976
Nissan Maxima, 1982

An art photo from the camera of the Rear Admiral.
Shows the enormity of the fields that we passed through at 80 MPH
and they seemed endless!
The OPEN road!
Day one:  Monday October 23, 2017

Road Trip Tips:

A cooler is a great idea.  We both brought a medium sized unit and we used one for cold and one for dry food storage.  Ice was renewed in Ziplock gallon bags each day at the motels.  Our cooler lids did not have hinges so the top just comes off, that allows for easier access when the cooler is in the back and the road tripper wants to get a snack out while in the front seat.
Essential ingredients for a Dark and Stormy.
Good thirst slaker!

A kitty is a good idea too.  Just fund it with equal amounts of cash and then spend the kitty.  We didn't have a small baggie to put the funds in and so we just kept the receipts, added them up and split the difference.  Count Ferrari is waiting for his $82 from the Rear Admiral....

Cell phones have really made navigation much easier but a paper map is much better for planning purposes.
A favorite look for a 'Cool Truck'.

A good app for cell phones is WAZE.  It shows where the police are hanging out if you like going fast.  It does suck a battery dry quickly so be plugged in to the car for full time juice.  DON'T FORGET YOUR CHARGER CORDS FOR 12V AND 110V.

DAY ONE of the Disc Golf Road Trip 2017:

We met up at 1:00 pm in Kirkland where Count Enrico dropped off his ride.  The route was to be over the North Cascades Highway but it had closed two days previously so the Rear Admiral opted for tHighway 90, the biggest and fastest route to Eastern Washington.  The weather was sunny and mild in the low 60s which was very warm for October 23!

The WAZE app saw many police by the side of the road so we kept to the flow of traffic and even then we saw a couple of sleeper Washington State Patrols, one in a grey pickup with canopy and another in a grey Suburban.    Both trolling stealthily for speeders.  They were NOT on the WAZE.
Note the larch trees, needles that change color!
Found above 3000 ft. in mountain country.

The time of year was seeing the trees in full color (check the photos).

Our first stop was in Roslyn on the other side of the Cascades.  Carek's Meat Market makes the best ever beef jerky so we got a full pound in two different flavors.  The Count prefers the 'Original' flavor while the Rear Admiral got the Teriyaki.

We found the Safeway (new) at the south end of town, out in the bush and provisioned with some whiskey, rum, chips and sandwich for lunch.   We backtracked a bit and ended up at the disc course in Suncadia.  You have to go by the manned gate entrance but the fellow is fun to fool with and just allows passage if you tell him you are going in to disc.

This is a VERY nice 9 hole course and will soon be an 18 as there were temporary tees set up with spray paint.  The 9 was great and there are very nice restrooms near the first tee.  Playing in the pines with the sun out was outstanding!  The field was wet so we were glad we had booted up in our water walkers.

Following that we got back on Highway 90 and headed for Spokane.  We made arrangements to meet with Hawkeye on the following day for a disc round the AM.  The RA also did a Priceline bid with his phone for a room at the RL hotel  downtown and  then had the $12 parking fee added after our bid price.  We were upgraded to a very nice room on the 10th floor overlooking the River Park and that was $84.  Our most expensive room  for the trip and didn't include a breakfast.

We walked out to dinner at the NUDU Asian Fusion and made it in at 8:40 and they close at 9:00.  Good choice.  The walking downtown saw many less fortunate than us.  The streets were clean and there were walkers in the park after dark that we saw.  This is a very nice river park.


Awoke early, dark still at 6:30 now.  Got a cup of coffee in the room and headed down to the car.  It was chilly out!  

We used phones to navigate to the disc course, Downriver,  that Hawkeye selected.  It was an epic 18 hole course!  Along a river with lots of ups and downs with pine trees galore!  This is worth returning to for the views.  It was foggy that morning and the Count was happy to wear his disc gloves.
Target #8 at Downriver, near Spokane.
Count Ferrari walking to an errant approach while
Hawkeye waits patiently.

Count Enrico and the Rear Admiral
test the rock support for the benches.

After the round, about 10 AM we hit the road, Highway 90 again en route to Missoula.  A stop at a one of the best breakfast places put us in good humor!  The Corner Cafe was the place.  Cafe and Diner are two types of road food stops liked by us.  This one didn't disappoint!

The road to Missoula was absolutely gorgeous as the fall leaves and the larch trees were all turned gold to red!  The views through the windshield were all one could ask for.

We zoomed into Idaho and with Montana soon to come.  Wallace, Idaho is worth the stop. A great mining museum on the way into town and seeing the freeway built up over the town from below is a sight too.  This is the last place to get multiple lanes on Highway 90 from the Pacific to the Atlantic and they had to build it over the town!  We got some good fudge filled and lemon curd filled innovative cookies and rolled out towards Montana.

Then we saw a speed limit sign that said 80 MPH!  The RA locked the cruise at 90 MPH and even checked the top end speed on a long straight stretch.  The car went 120 MPH and was limited by some sort of electronic governor.  90 seemed slow after that!

We stopped at truck stops and even went to a Peterbilt dealer to check them out.  A new tractor with sleeper, full dressed was $168,000 and good for a million miles or so!  The new ones even look liked the older ones with a squared engine cover.  RA took many photos of all sorts of trucks.  He has a 'Jones' for them.  The more lights and visors and chrome the better!
An outstanding color for a photo.  This is the look that makes the Rear Admiral holler!
He wants to make an RV out of a 40' trailer with about the last 10' for Big Guy Toys.

We found the smoke jumper school but it was closed and then went on in to our Priceline hotel which turned out to be the Broadway Inn and Conference Center.  Nice rooms but the halls could use a serious face lift.

Dinner was at the Notorious P.I.G.  (Pig Is Good) and we had ribs.  YUMMY !  It was a good food day!

Back to the hot tub at the hotel for the Count while the RA messed with photos.


Early start around 8 after 'free breakfast' which was only OK.  The car had ice on the windshield!  Apparently it snowed in Missoula the next day!  This was our furthest point out in our loop.  A Tri-State road trip!  We headed south to find Highway 12 and the LOLO Pass road.  High marks for scenic here!  Might have even been frost on the road in a couple of spots.
This residence (?), found in  town outside of Lewiston,  was given to the Rear Admiral.
He and his wife will move in Nov. 1

We pulled into Lewiston and the RA 'Yelped' a taqueria  which was OUTSTANDING!  Then out to find Sunset Park for a round of disc in a groomed park setting with views of the Snake River valley that went on for ever! A beautiful course with lush green grass to walk about on.  Not much chance of losing a disc here!  Lots of up and down too!  Weird technology on the hole targets.  Solar powered lights?  Not sure.  The RA called the college that installed them to find out.  Not a definitive answer.  She thought they might be for lights at night but we couldn't see any bulbs.
Please leave a comment on this blog if you know what the heck this
is doing on top of the target.
It is a solar cell that charges for some reason.

The next round was a Hell's Gate State Park on the Snake River.  A fine nine hole in a river bottom that makes good use of the limited up and down available.  No course map at the course, we got some help from a local who steered us to the #5 target from the up bank tee.  It is hidden behind some shrubbery to right of the #7 target we thought was #5.

After this round, we saddled up and headed to Walla Walla which we attained in a couple of hours.  We got there in time to catch about 8 holes at Fort Walla Walla Park.  It was tough to find the tees to match the targets but the RA got his phone out and found a course map that helped but it was still tough.  This course has some length to it.  Not my favorite thing in a course.

We found our Quality Inn on Priceline and the Count discovered he had left a jacket behind in Missoula and he lost a pair of reading glasses on the Fr. Walla Walla course (a function of old age?) .  Check your room closely before leaving!

Dinner was put to Yelp and a discovery of a 5 star Whoop 'Em UP Cafe took us there.  $$ Creole food and it was fabulous.  We both had File Gumbo!  YUMMY.  As we were finishing, 6 witches came in to have some wine and fun.  They were a good group in pre-Halloween celebration.  Well done costumes.

The Witches of Walla Walla at the Whoop 'Em UP
Cafe.  They brought their brooms out to party ON!


Wiccan witches of the west,
Magic moments are the best
When the leisure expert wizard is left
To put the six witch’s to the test. 

-by Joy Love-

We motored out of Walla Walla after a reasonable 'free' hotel breakfast toward Yakima.  A friend, Jesse Ingram, had moved to Yakima about 9 years ago and he designed a course the Count wanted to play.  It was excellent.  Wide Hollow Course in some park in Yakima.  9 holes in a lush green grass setting with enough trees to make it interesting.

Lunch was at the Taco Bus   (see photo at the top of the blog) which is our favorite taqueria ever.  We had tortas.   Taqueria Jauciense!!!   YUMMY again!

After that we took Highway 821 along the Yakima River to Ellensburg and then on Highway 10 to Cle Elum to fuel at the Safeway.  This car was remarkably fuel efficient averaging 27.5 MPG.  With only an 18 gallon tank and burning regular it still got us over 400 miles a tank.

A round of disc, repeating on the Suncadia  9 hole course saw Count Ferrari finally catch and beat the Rear Admiral for a one stroke lead at the end of 9 holes.  The Rear Admiral had really stepped up his game since retirement!

From Roslyn we took Highway 90 to the West and to Kirkland where we parted company around 5:30 PM.  A good trip!
The Count being entertained by a coven in Walla Walla.


  1. Looks like you boys had some good ole fashioned road tripping fun! Nice write up. :)

  2. Fun! I'm jealous. Katie and I have done a few trips of that nature. The longest included courses in Suncadia, Wenachee, Yakima, Kennewick, Redmond OR, Sisters, Oakridge, Eugene, Astoria, Lucky Mud, and Shelton. Katie thanks you for the "7 Ps"! She is going to use that on her own engineering students at UW to try to convince them to read the syllabus....I'm thinking, "Good luck with that."
    The do-hickies on the baskets have to be lights for playing Glo....Student project? Or maybe they have designed discs that will home in on a solar powered GPS signal :-)

  3. Did you do anything illegal besides speeding?

  4. What is done on a road trip stays on a road trip!