Our Top 5 Must-Play Disc Golf Courses in California

Golden Gate Bridge

Published: 9/11/2023

California, with its diverse landscapes and year-round sunny weather, is a haven for outdoor sports-including disc golf. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a beginner, the Golden State offers a range of courses that promise an exhilarating experience. In this article, we'll delve into five must-play disc golf courses in California that you shouldn't miss.

From the coastal beauty of Santa Cruz to the bustling vibe of San Francisco, each course on our list offers a unique setting and experience. So, let's dive in and explore these outstanding courses that will leave you craving for more disc golf adventures in California.

Whether you're looking to improve your technical shots, relish in scenic beauty, or soak up a rich disc golf culture, California has it all. This article aims to be your comprehensive guide to selecting the perfect course for your next outing.

1. DeLaveaga Disc Golf Course, Santa Cruz

Situated in Santa Cruz, DeLaveaga Disc Golf Course is often touted as one of the best courses in the world. The course is set in a hilly and wooded area, offering 29 holes that promise a variety of challenges and scenic views.

  • Hole Variety: From uphill climbs to downhill shots, each hole presents a unique challenge.
  • Scenery: The course offers breathtaking views of the Santa Cruz Mountains and Monterey Bay.
  • Community: A vibrant local disc golf community makes DeLaveaga a social hub for enthusiasts.

The course is well-maintained and offers amenities like benches, tee signs, and restrooms. If you're planning a visit, make sure to arrive early, especially on weekends, as the course tends to get busy. The signature hole, known as the "Top of the World," offers an unforgettable throwing experience from a high elevation.

Furthermore, the DeLaveaga Disc Golf Course hosts several tournaments throughout the year, including the famous Santa Cruz Masters Cup. These events attract top talent, making it an excellent opportunity for budding players to watch and learn from the best in the sport.

If you're new to the course, consider joining one of the guided tours usually offered on weekends. It's a great way to familiarize yourself with the layout and nuances of each hole.

2. Golden Gate Park Disc Golf Course, San Francisco

Located in the heart of San Francisco, Golden Gate Park Disc Golf Course offers an urban disc golf experience unlike any other. The 18-hole course is beautifully designed, featuring a mix of open and wooded areas that cater to players of all skill levels.

  • Accessibility: Easily reachable via public transport, making it convenient for city dwellers.
  • Design: Each hole is thoughtfully designed, offering multiple pin positions to keep the game interesting.

Whether you're looking for a quick game or a full day of disc golf, Golden Gate Park has you covered.

The course is particularly beautiful in the mornings when the fog rolls in, adding an ethereal quality to your game. Make sure to check out the bulletin board near the first tee for any local events or leagues you can join.

One of the unique features of the course is the community involvement. Local players often organize clean-up days, keeping the course in pristine condition. The course also enjoys support from local businesses, creating a synergy between the disc golf community and the city.

A noteworthy point is the course's active online community. From finding playing partners to discussing course strategy, the online forums and social media groups offer a plethora of information.

3. Oak Grove Disc Golf Course, Pasadena

Known as the world's first permanent disc golf course, Oak Grove Disc Golf Course in Pasadena is steeped in history. The course features 19 holes that wind through a beautiful park setting, offering a balanced mix of technical and open shots.

  • Historical Significance: As the first-ever disc golf course, it holds a special place in the sport's history.
  • Course Layout: The course layout is versatile, offering something for players of all skill levels.

Oak Grove is a must-visit for anyone interested in the history and evolution of disc golf.

Don't forget to check out the historic plaque that commemorates the course's significance in the disc golf world. The course is particularly popular during weekends, so if you prefer a quieter experience, consider visiting on a weekday.

Oak Grove offers a unique feature known as 'The Oak Grove Gazebo,' a central point where players gather for events or simply to socialize. This communal atmosphere adds an extra layer of enjoyment to your disc golf experience.

The course has been featured in several disc golf documentaries, adding to its appeal and allure. If you're looking to understand the roots of the sport, Oak Grove is the place to be.

4. Morley Field Disc Golf Course, San Diego

Morley Field Disc Golf Course in San Diego is one of the busiest disc golf courses in the world. It features a 19-hole layout that offers a range of challenges, from tight technical shots to long open fairways.

  • High Traffic: Its popularity means you'll always find someone to play with, regardless of when you visit.
  • Well-Maintained: The course is impeccably maintained, with regular changes to the hole positions.

Morley Field offers a dynamic disc golf experience that keeps players coming back.

The course also features night golf, which is a unique experience that any disc golfer should try at least once. Make sure to bring your best game, as the course can be unforgiving with its narrow fairways and tricky pin positions.

Morley Field hosts a weekly league that is open to players of all skill levels. This is a fantastic way to meet local disc golfers and maybe even find a new playing partner. Additionally, the pro shop on-site offers a wide selection of discs and gear, catering to both beginners and seasoned players.

The course also offers private lessons, ranging from beginner to advanced levels. If you're looking to improve your game, this is an excellent opportunity to learn from experienced players.

5. La Mirada Regional Park, La Mirada

La Mirada Regional Park features two full 18-hole courses, providing a comprehensive disc golf experience. The courses are set in a sprawling park that offers a variety of natural obstacles and elevations.

  • Two Courses: With two 18-hole courses, you can easily spend an entire day here.
  • Natural Obstacles: Trees, lakes, and elevation changes add complexity and excitement to the game.

La Mirada offers a fulfilling experience for those looking to immerse themselves in a day of disc golf.

The park also features other amenities like picnic areas and playgrounds, making it a great outing for the entire family. The course is busiest during the summer months, so consider visiting in the off-season for a more serene experience.

Beyond disc golf, La Mirada Regional Park offers other recreational activities like fishing and paddle boating. This makes it a versatile destination where you can enjoy a full day of varied outdoor activities.

The courses at La Mirada are designed to be beginner-friendly while still offering enough challenges to keep seasoned players engaged. The dual layouts mean that you can choose to play a quick round or opt for an all-day disc golf marathon.

Discover the Best of California Disc Golf

In summary, these five disc golf courses in California offer a diverse range of experiences, from the historical significance of Oak Grove to the urban charm of Golden Gate Park and the community spirit of DeLaveaga. Whether you're a seasoned player or just starting, California's disc golf scene has something for everyone. So, grab your discs, head to these fantastic courses, and enjoy the beauty and challenge of disc golf in the Golden State!

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