SOUTH FORK— Earlier in the spring, the South Fork Visitor Center began to collect and plan for a frisbee golf course at the ball fields located next to the community center. Throughout the next couple of months, the center received enough donations to purchase nine new baskets to set up a small course. Visitor Center Director Mark Teders set the baskets up in the small field and began to advertise for the course throughout the summer. The course was one of a kind for the area with the only other one in the Valley located in Alamosa. The only problem was that the space the course was set up in and the way the baskets were placed in the field didn’t allow for much room for the game to be played.
With all of the effort and funds that had gone into the project merely sitting in the field without getting much use, Teders reached out to the community and asked for help. Around this time, Rhythms on the Rio was preparing for their annual concert and two local businesses decided it was time to not only expand the course, but to relocate it. Thanks to generous donations from local community members and businesses, the course is now located at the Rhythms on the Rio Festival grounds and has turned from a small nine-hole course that covered maybe a mile-long section of field into an 18-hole, four-and-a-half-mile wonderland.
Frisbee golf has gained speed since its conception in the early to late 1980s and is now considered to be one of the most popular sports in the United States and abroad. The game is based on its counterpart, regular golf, taking the same concept and applying it to a frisbee and chain clad baskets rather than golf balls and small holes. A player takes a specially designed disk and aims for the basket, scoring the shots the same as one would for golf. Though many state that the game is not challenging, one only needs to give it a shot to see that it is not as easy as it seems.
The hidden gem in South Fork offers a wide variety of long distance, challenging shots that are found nowhere else within a 60-mile radius. Between Wolf Creek Anglers and Rio Grande Vacation Rentals, the two designed another awesome course for the people in the Valley. A similar and just as challenging course is located near the Cattails Golf Course in Alamosa that was built in 2014. The course is set up along the river in a wetland area full of trees, wildlife and challenging shots.
The South Fork course takes golfers around the edges of the field next to the Rhythms on the Rio grounds, along the edge of the Rio Grande and circles them through the camping areas. The time and effort that was put into creating the course shows in every way, from the plowed paths to the rail tie tee pads, people who knew what they were doing spent a decent amount of time creating the course.
While traveling to the area, turn at the Rhythms on the Rio Festival sign just off of Highway 160 about a mile from South Fork. A sign towards the back of the festival parking lot directs golfers to their destination. Get out and enjoy the last lazy days of fall and give frisbee golf a try.