The Ultimate Guide to Winter Disc Golf - Disc Golf Deals USA

The Ultimate Guide to Winter Disc Golf

Est reading time: 9 min

While the Pro Tour likes to pack its bags and call it a day when winter rolls in, some of us are not quite done yet! It's hard to accept that you'll have to pack your discs away for the next 3 months while the disc golf frenzy is still pulsing through your veins! I've got good news for you, you don't have to!

To some snow and ice is best enjoyed from the other side of a pane of glass. For the true disc golf adventurer, the course is only at its best once it's transformed into a winter wonderland!

So with all this in mind, you head off to the course to brave the elements...

man slipping on a disc golf tee pad in winter

You throw terribly, you fall in the snow 8 times, get your clothes wet, and half freeze as a result! After nine holes of this hell, you decide to DNF, head home, and sip some hot chocolate while wallowing in self-pity!

So yeah, winter disc golf can be awful, but it can also be a breathtaking experience! The course truly is at its most beautiful when veiled with a mantle of snow!

Give this absolutely hilarious video from Lat 64 a watch, and pick up some winter disc golf tips along the way!

 

The question is how can you play disc golf in winter?

To really enjoy disc golf in winter you need to get smart! Savvy winter disc golf enthusiasts have a treasure trove of cold weather disc golf tips! I've gathered them all up and hucked in a few of my own so that your first round of disc golf in cold weather doesn't end in total disaster!

Whether you're looking for tips and tricks on how to play disc golf in the snow or just in cold weather this guide has the answers to all your winter disc golf questions! If it doesn't? contact us and we'll answer your question and add it to this guide!

Table of contents:

  1. Safety
  2. Clothing
  3. Disc Selection
  4. Snow and Disc Golf
  5. Hydration
  6. Conclusion

Safety

snow warning sign indicating potential saftey concerns with playing disc golf in the snow

Yes, I'm sorry, I know it's boring but it really is the most important point when playing disc golf in extreme weather! I'll keep this section short, but I do suggest reading it. There are some dangerous factors to cold weather disc golf that may not have occurred to you.

Clearing Tee Pads and Your Lie

man clearing snow off a disc golf tee pad

This is very important when playing disc golf in snow and ice. If you do not clear the tee pads and your lie you are very likely to slip and potentially hurt yourself.

When the tee pads are slick with ice you might get better grip by simply throwing next to them. You should also consider throwing standstill drives if you'd rather not lug a snow shovel around the course!

Extreme Cold

man looking through window at a thermometer showing cold temperatures

I suggest you read this article if you're planning to play in sub-zero temperatures. https://www.medicinenet.com/how_cold_is_too_cold_to_go_outside/article.htm

Sometimes it simply is just too cold. There's a chasm of difference between bravery and stupidity. Hypothermia and frostbite are no joke so check the temperature before heading off and consider how long you will be outside for. It's also not a great idea to take kids along on your coldest rounds!

Road Conditions

car skidding on a snowy road

It's worth considering the drive to your course. Is it far away and only accessible by roads dangerous when covered in snow and ice? The last thing you want is to end up wheel spinning on the side of the road halfway to the course!

Clothing

man dressed warmly for winter disc golf walking in the snow

If you read the safety section I personally thank you for putting up with me telling you things you've most likely already thought of! It's time to get onto the good stuff, cold weather disc golf clothing tips!

Layers

abstract layers icon

It's best to dress in layers when playing any sport outdoors! When you're halfway through your round you'll start to heat up, and maybe even sweat. When you have several layers you can easily adjust by stripping one off! Make sure you have space in your bag to store any layers you expect to shed!

Consider the following layers.

  • Vest (consider a heated one!)
  • Long sleeve shirt/shirts
  • Thin warm waterproof flexible wind resistant jacket/jackets
  • Thermal leggings
  • Flexible pants
  • Gaiters (These can keep snow out of your shoes, reducing the need for high and heavy snow boots!)
  • Beanie or some other headwear (Keeping your head and ears warm is important, and hoodies block peripheral vision which can be annoying!)

Footwear

waterproof running shoes with good grip

The best winter disc golf shoes are always waterproof, and have excellent grip! As soon as your feet get wet you'll only want to go home, I promise! That's why waterproof footwear is essential to prevent it from happening.

When the snow is high enough to fall into your shoes you might want to switch to some bulkier snow boots. Unfortunately, this will negatively impact your throwing, so consider gaiters as an alternative!

You can also purchase a pair of waterproof socks for your cold weather rounds. If you don't have any your thickest pair of ordinary socks should do the trick. Woolen socks are a great option!

Consider packing a spare pair of socks into your bag in case they do somehow get wet!

Disc Golf Gloves for Winter

thin gloves vs bigger and warmer snow gloves

To maintain a good grip on your discs and achieve consistent releases you have to keep your hands warm! This necessitates the use of gloves, but there are two methods!

  • Taking gloves on and off

Some players opt for bulky gloves which are warmer but have to be removed before each throw. If you prefer this I suggest using gloves that come off easily, like mittens.

  • Throwing with gloves

Quite a few disc golfers prefer to throw without removing their gloves. To minimize the impact on your shots you'll need to use thinner gloves that fit tightly to your hand. You can even wear a bulkier warmer glove on your nonthrower to keep at least one hand toasty!

Hand and Foot Warmers

two hands with gloves with handwarmers giving a thumbs up

Your hands and feet are the extremities of your body and tend to get cold the quickest! That's why disc golfers are huge fans of hand warmers for cold weather play.

If your hand is too cold it will drastically impact your throwing! Hand warmers can make all the difference!

While not as vital, foot warmers can also increase your enjoyment of a chilly front 9!

Another thing to consider is whether to use rechargeable or disposable warmers. Reusable ones could end up saving you some cash down the line, but they'll cost more initially.

If you use disposable ones do us a favor and don't trash the course with them! When they're finished just stick them into a pocket on your bag!

Disc Selection

Finally, I'll get to what you've been wading through this article for! How to actually throw better in cold weather. Trust me it's always harder to play well in the cold, but does it have to be that much harder?

Use Flippier Discs

This is an interesting piece of advice because in colder weather the higher air density technically makes discs more understable. So scientifically your throws will turn more, but in actual practice, you'll find they're more overstable.

Your shots will be less understable because...

  • When you're cold you move slower.
  • When you're wearing tons of clothes you get less power.
  • Stiffer plastic is more overstable.
  • When your fingers are cold you generate less snap.
  • Slick tee pads and lies make you throw softer because you're worried about slipping.

Credits to Green Splatter for these awesome points! You can read their article here to dig deeper into this subject.

Check out our understable discs here.

Best Plastic for Winter Disc Golf

Disc golf plastics can stiffen considerably in the cold! Sometimes they become so brittle they can even shatter on impact with a tree!

When choosing plastics for your cold weather rounds aim for flexibility and durability. Avoid baseline plastics as they are more likely to stiffen and break. Some plastics such as Gstar are less affected by the cold. Some other great choices include...

  • KastaplastK1 soft
  • Discmania NEO
  • Latitude 64 Frost Line

Snow and Disc Golf

While snow is guilty as charged for making the course look absolutely gorgeous, it also comes with some implications. It can quickly ruin your most promising rounds unless you know how to adapt!

Try Some Gaitors

one shoe with a gator attached to keep snow out when playing disc golf in the cold

Another quick shout-out to gaiters here.

It feels like the snow has one goal, which is to cram as much of itself into your shoe, and then melt.

Waterproof shoes won't prevent snow from getting in from the top. You could wear high snow boots, but that will affect your footwork. Instead, you can just use gaiters.

Bring Towels

Although snow isn't wet, it can quickly melt on your disc or in your hands and make everything slippery! This won't be a problem if you've thought ahead and packed a couple of towels!

Stool

When you rest your back in the snow on the ground it can stick to the bag and get onto your back. This in turn can melt and wet you. What some disc golfers will do is carry a stool with them to put their bag on. While this isn't the most crucial tip I thought I'd include it for any who have experienced this problem.

Don't Use Clear and White Discs

white disc with a dissallowed cross sign through it

If you huck clear or white discs in snowy conditions you are literally throwing your money away! Rather swap them out for something else, or buy some doubles in different colors. When a white disc simply rests on the snow it can be extremely difficult to find, and what about when it's buried? The last thing you feel like when you're already cold is digging through snow trying to find a white object!

Cooling Your Discs

black disc with a dropping thermometer on it

This is an interesting tip that a number of disc golfers make use of. When your discs are warm the snow will stick to them and melt. This is obviously less than ideal. What players do to overcome this is to leave their bag outside or in the car for an hour or two before their round.

Other players prefer to keep their discs warm as colder discs are more brittle, and will be more likely to shatter.

I suggest you test out both and find which works best for you.

Using Disc Golf Snow Ribbons

green disc golf disc with a ribbon attached

When the snow is really deep your shots will disappear into the white and become unfindable. A way around this is to attach lengths of ribbon to your discs. This actually affects disc flight much less than you'd think, but it will still increase drag a little decreasing distance.

Attach the ribbon to the center of the underside of your disc. Ensure that the surface is clean and dry for proper adhesion. This is important because if the ribbon comes off your disc could be gone forever!

 

 

When the snow is deeper you can use lengths of ribbon up to 1 meter. The only thing to watch out for is getting tangled up with the ribbon as you throw. Experiment with different lengths to find what works for you.

Carpenter's Chalk

Another aid to finding discs in the snow is carpenter's chalk. Sprinkle some on your disc and it'll leave a mark where your shot entered the snow. While this is less likely to affect flight, it won't be as visible as a ribbon.

Hydration

Even though we connect hydration with hot and humid summers, it's still important in the cold! As a bonus, you can liquid to heat yourself up!

Water

water being poured from a jug into an insulated flask

If you're going to be cold, why be thirsty as well? Pack some water, but beware, it might freeze in temperatures below zero! Bring it with you in an insulated flask to prevent this.

A few wise players will bring lukewarm water, which can heat you up from the inside.

Hot Drinks

hot chocolate in a maroon mug with pink marshmellows

While hot drinks may not be the most hydrating, we can't deny they're just what we feel like in the cold! Consider filling a flask with hot chocolate, coffee, or tea.

Don't put hot drinks into a flask while they're too hot to drink. I did this once thinking I was a genius. Unfortunately, the coffee was scalding until the end of the round!

If you're playing with some buddies pack some cups and share your treasure. You'll be popular!

Have Fun and Be Brave

man playing a disc golf course in winter with snow falling

The only way to enjoy winter disc golf is to actually get out there and play a round! Don't go out there and try to beat your best score. Rather think of it as a way to enjoy the beauty of winter while playing your favorite sport! If you follow these tips you'll find winter's bark to be worse than its bite!

Got any winter disc golf tips of your own? Comment down below. We'd love to add them to our guide!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best plastics for winter disc golf?

Disc golf plastic tends to stiffen in cold weather. Baseline plastics get brittle easily and can shatter on impact. For these reasons consider throwing discs made with a flexible and soft premium plastic. Some great choices are; Gstar, NEO, K1 Soft, and Frost Line.

Can you play disc golf in the snow?

Playing disc golf in the snow can be breathtaking and fun! To ensure the best experience clear tee pads for safety, dress warmly, wear gloves, wear waterproof shoes, pack hand and foot warmers, pack towels, and don't throw clear or white discs. When the snow is deep attach a length of ribbon to the underside of your discs so that you can find them. Also, consider bringing hot drinks!

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