Throw a Hole-in-One at Diamond X
Quite a few years ago some of the residents in Billings recognized the need for a good folf, or disc golf, course. Most of the parks are too crowded and the danger of hitting a bystander is great. So Phipps Park, or Diamond X, was developed into a really fun place to go hike around and throw a disc.
Just west of Billings, around the base and on top of the Rimrocks is a large disc golf course. The area has long been a park, and as the sport gained popularity local groups developed it into a great recreation area. It is still left mostly natural; there are a few benches around, but not much else. Instead, a person can go through and play the first 9 holes at the base of the Rimrocks, and then have their choice of 2 different “back nines” to choose from up on top.
The bottom nine holes are easy to find. They follow along the cliffs heading into the wide canyon. These are the most popular because the biggest risk of losing a disk is throwing it into a bush or the taller grass. Up on top, however, it is a different story. All the same obstacles exist, but some of the holes follow fairly close to the edge of the cliff. A small gust of wind can send your disc flying for hundreds of yards. A keen eye can watch where it lands, but finding that exact spot when you have climbed down is a chore.
While folfing is the most popular thing to do at Diamond X, it is not the only thing to do. There are plenty of trails for hiking around the whole area. This is a dog friendly park, so if you want to bring your four legged friend out for a run just make sure they relieve themselves off the trail (or use a stick to move it off when they are done). For those who love good off-road trails on their bike this is one of the best spots in Billings. On top of the Rimrocks you can look out over the west end of town and admire the view. I have never been up there at sunrise, but I can only imagine that it is one magnificent view.
While hiking around at Phipps Park, make sure to keep an eye out for rattlesnakes. It is an undeveloped park, and there are a lot of snakes in the area, especially during hot weather. There are also a lot of ticks during the tick season, so make sure to check yourself over when you get home. Be courteous to other people, and don’t take your paintball gun to shoot up the signs and rocks, that’s just rude.
To get to Diamond X take Rimrock Road out past the Yellowstone Country Club. It will wrap around back by Ironwood Estates, and as soon as you see the train bridge start slowing down. There is a small parking lot on the left (south) side of the road. There is one main trail that will lead you to the first disc golf hole. If you are a smoker, save it for later. There was recently a fire in the area and you can see how much damage can be done by being careless. Most of all, be safe, have fun, and throw a hole in one.
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