Bend Drives for More Disc Golf

Skyline Fields adds a disc golf course open to the public this winter


Photo by Ted Johnson

Mia Mees, Staff Writer

Signs saying “Watch for Flying Discs” cover the forest area at Skyline Park, along with nine standing basket holes—half of a Disc Golf game. On Nov 1, Bend Parks and Recreation unveiled the disc golf course which sent disc golf connoisseurs flocking to see the playing field. 

Though there has been an abundance of people utilizing the course, some players are concerned about it’s availability, only being open during the snow and ice season for a mere four and a half months. Despite concerns, Bend Parks and Recreation District (BPRD) and the Central Oregon disc Golf Club (CODGC) partnered to create the course, recognizing the growing popularity of disc golf in Bend. 

“The course is a pilot project,” said Rachel Colton, a park planner and contributor to the park design. Bend Parks and Recreation plans for the activity to be open until Feb 28. “This timing is to balance this use with other existing uses at the park including soccer, flag football and baseball,” explains Colton. The Central Oregon DGC and BPRD signed a one year contract with uncertainty of future renewal.

Travis Bean, a teacher at Summit, picked up disc golf during quarantine as a pastime and for a way to get outside. As an avid player, he is concerned regarding the time of year the course is open.

 “I’m surprised they’re not gonna have it open year round, it should be open during summer. I would think that would be the peak season to go,” Bean said., “I wouldn’t want to go when it’s icy, that could be dangerous for play.”

“I’ve been playing every day since it opened!” said Scott Nebecker, an avid disc golf player found at the park. He further described his love for the spot, “It’s like the pine nursery course on steroids but smaller.” He’s disappointed the course isn’t open for the entirety of the year but, unlike Bean, doesn’t see a problem with playing during winter. 

While the course remains temporary for the time being, there is a possibility for the installation to become a lasting part of the disc golf canon. “BPRD will consider making the disc golf course permanent as part of our Comprehensive Plan update in approximately 2 years.” Colton said. For the frequenters who are working on their birdies, players like Nebecker are hoping this course will be here to stay.