Tonals Are Right On Target For A “Home” Disc Golf Course

by | Aug 22, 2013

You vacation in a foreign country to stretch and make new discoveries. Which is exactly what happened last week in British Columbia, Canada.

Once we got settled in our vacation rental, I looked up local disc golf courses in the Okanagan Valley and found two — a short, unsatisfying municipal nine-hole course in Kelowna, plus Fallow Ridge, a 28-hole private pay-to-play course outside of Vernon.

Fallow Ridge is unlike anything I’ve ever seen or played before. The course is laid out in Ken Fallow’s steep upward sloping backyard. There are lots of trees and if you miss a putt you better hope your disc lands flat, because if it rolls, you’re going for a big hike.

I called Ken on the phone to inquire about his course and to set a time to play. I learned that we had to become members of British Columbia Disc Sports Society in order to play.

We paid our dues upon arrival, plus another $6 to play and Ken gave us a scorecard and several pointers about the course ahead. With hanging baskets, tonals, hanging propane tanks, and robot targets, a bit of explanation was welcome. For one, I wasn’t sure what a tonal was but upon encountering this piece of old-school ingenuity in the woods behind Ken Fallow’s home, I’m now a fan of copper pipes hanging from trees. When you hit a tonal with your putter, it makes a resounding GONG! Hence, the name.

Now that we’re back in the USA, I’m excited to go into production on some Oregon-made tonals. I know just the wooded acreage near Corvallis that will soon benefit from this improvisational (and affordable) twist on disc golf targets.