Joe's Travels: 01

Jamestown to Placerville

The sunrises on the open road giving off a purple and orange sky with striped clouds

As the sun slowly rose over Tulloch Lake in Jamestown, California, Hobo Joe “Chains” McGraw opened his eyes, greeted by the breathtaking view of the still waters reflecting the morning sky. The first rays of the day illuminated the surrounding hills, signaling the arrival of spring with its warm embrace and colorful display of wildflowers. Joe knew he was in for a treat, both on and off the disc golf course, as he continued his journey through the Golden State.

Over the past few weeks, Joe had met some new friends who shared his passion for disc golf, some who taught him about their passions like fishing and wood working and some with whom he shared a brief moment before moving on to the next destination. He had enjoyed the camaraderie of the Tuolumne County DG Club Weekly, where players from all walks of life gathered to compete and share their stories. It wasn’t the best round of golf Chains has turned in lately, but it certainly was one of the most enjoyable. He had then driven down to Boulder Creek to catch up with some old buddies he hasn’t played golf with in quite some time, relishing the chance to play a leisurely round at the picturesque Boulder Creek Country Club and sample the local cuisine in the quaint downtown area.

But it was the magic of Feeny Park in Murphys that truly captured Joe’s heart. Surrounded by towering pines and rolling hills, this hidden gem of a disc golf course felt like a sanctuary, a place where time stood still and worries melted away. There, he played alongside some of his closest friends and the gracious owners of Sonora Disc Golf, who welcomed him like family.

After a few days of camping at Lake Tulloch, Joe hit the road again, taking the scenic route from Jamestown to Auburn via Highway 49 and 16. The verdant hills and vibrant wildflowers created a tapestry of colors that seemed to stretch beyond the horizon. Joe couldn’t help but feel a sense of wonder and gratitude, as he contemplated the beauty of the journey he was on. Chains was lucky enough to get another casual round in with one fo his disc golf brothers at Rocklin Disc Golf Course.

As the day drew to a close, Joe found himself in Placerville, surrounded by new friends who had welcomed him with open arms. They treated him to a sumptuous feast of freshly caught crab, paired with ice-cold beers and the excitement of a Boston Bruins game on the television. It was a night of laughter, joy, and belonging, a reminder that family is not always tied by blood, but by the shared experiences of life.

The next morning, Chains played in the Monarch Migration tournament at Feather Garden, feeling very optimistic on the dream-like day that welcomed male competitors for the first time this year. He gave it his all, playing with grace and determination, but eventually slipping a bit in the second round. In the end, he tied for fifth place, but it didn’t matter. For Joe, disc golf was never just about winning or losing, but about the journey, the friendships, and the beauty of the road.

As Hobo Joe reflects on his recent travels and disc golf adventures, he can’t help but feel grateful for the open road and the community he has been lucky enough to find along the way. From the stunning landscapes of Northern California to the welcoming disc golf courses and friendly locals, Joe has been reminded that life is about the journey, it’s about humanity and our shared experiences. And as he packs up his trusty discs and hits the road once more, he knows that he’ll continue to seek out new experiences, make new friends, and, of course, play plenty of disc golf. For Joe, the road always leads to new adventures, and he’s excited to see where it takes him next.