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Wildman's Burrito Guide
811 N State St, St Ignace, MI (906) 643-1519
Java Joe's Cafe always had a great wet burrito - now Joe has opened a "branch office" just for Mexican food - Jose's Cantina is located just a little south of Java Joe's Cafe on State Street.
Silver Mountain - St. Ignace, MI
24 holes - Open April - October
Free to Play (donations encouraged)
Located just of of Highway US-2; turn east onto Cheeseman Road, quick right to enter the Sliver Mountain Ski Area: parking lot for disc golf is on the left.
The quest for disc golf in St. Ignace began when local legendary restaurant owner "Java Joe" Durm spoke with me about disc golf during one of my visits. We originally tried to get a course into a nearby park, but due to many factors it turned out to be unfeasible. Later on, Joe put me in touch with another local businessman, Steve "Frenchie" DuFresne, owner of the barber shop and also a disc golfer. He provided the right connection at the right time to get another location for the course: the Silver Mountain Ski Area.
The original design of the course was just a triangle of three holes, which quickly morphed into nine. After a year of operation, the course was then expanded to 18 and shortly there after 24 holes, containing an optional loop of six holes (letters A-F) between existing holes 11 and 12. Still the largest disc golf course in the Upper Peninsula, it was also the first to have a sanctioned PDGA event and for a couple of years was a part of the Northern Waters Series.
"Frenchie" worked tirelessly on this course, often times spending several hours a day by himself chopping trees, digging tee areas, clearing brush - a one man construction crew. After fighting a losing battle with the massive poison ivy infestation on the original hole 16, he changed some of the holes around. Further changes were made to accommodate a start from the new parking area built closer to the park entrance.
Despite the changes, the flow of the layout is fairly unchanged. The first 9 holes play around the woods in the flatland but then turn uphill for a couple of short but steep uphill shots. Hole 9 is a lovely downhill launch back toward the ski lodge and the original parking area. Holes 10 - 12 work your way back up another hill, with 13-15 on the top of the summit. Hole 15 has a great view of nearby Lake Michigan. Hole 16 was originally another big downhill throw, but too much poison ivy made the hole unplayable after just a couple of years. The extra holes A-F provide a small loop-within-a-loop of some challenging holes of various lengths, with 'F' being a tricky downhill shot down a narrow corridor.
Bring bug spray if you are going to play here, and be prepared to spend some time, because a lot of the rough is very rough and unless you have someone spotting, there are many opportunities for lost discs. But the natural beauty and some of the breathtaking scenery are well worth the extra time, if you enjoy the great outdoors.
2014 Tournaments & Events
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