For our next player spotlight segment we turn our focus to Pensacola, Florida’s Madison Walker. Over the past two seasons Madison has been traveling and competing extensively. Despite the stresses that can accompany life on the road, Madison has maintained her positive vibe, LOL sense of humor, and generally endearing personality. And we aren’t just saying that because we like her, it’s actually true. Here, see for yourself….
So Madson, when, where, and how did you first discover disc golf?
I played on my college’s men’s Ultimate team in 2007 at the University of Southern Mississippi for a year before I discovered disc golf. I was a handler and I only threw forehand hucks, which is not the most normal approach to the sport. I also had a tendency to accidentally throw the disc to my teammates with a little too much heat. A couple of the guys on my team noticed my throwing snap and accuracy and decided to take me out to play a round of disc golf. I was hooked immediately and I played with them at last twice a week for a few months before focusing more on my degree.
What was the very first golf disc that you threw?
To be honest, I have no idea. When I first started playing I was borrowing discs from friends every time we would play. I was also losing discs regularly because the course we always played was pretty brutal (Paul B. Johnson State Park in Hattiesburg, MS). It was 22+ holes with a bunch of water and thick shule EVERYWHERE. The first disc I remember falling in love with was a Champion Eagle-L.
You have posted a lot of fishing photos online. Are you a better disc golfer or fisherwoman?
Haha! Definitely better at disc golf! I love fishing so so so much, but I feel like you have to dedicate a lifetime and lots of money in order to be “good” at fishing. There’s so many different locations and fish and types! I’m pretty sure that in an alternate life, I’m a worldwide professional fly fisherman.
Best or biggest catch ever?
Yes! I get to channel my inner old man boat captain and tell long-winded fishing stories! As for the biggest catch: I did my undergraduate thesis on shark reproductive biology, so when you are targeting sharks, you pretty much only catch the biggest! We caught a handful of sharks that blew me away, in particular I remember a tiger shark that was so big we couldn’t get it on the deck of the research vessel to draw blood and take measurements. It was over 12 feet long! For my favorite catch: it was my first time fly fishing in freshwater. I was on the Ausable River in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York. The river is fast moving and filled with boulders and rocks, so on top of the bulky waders, the fishing pole, the net, and the fanny pack of gear, you also have to carry a walking stick because the water is super pushy! My friends who lent me the gear couldn’t go, so I went alone with almost no knowledge of what I was supposed to be doing. I had never fished for Rainbow trout, and the type of fishing for that season was very touchy and sneaky and crafty. Still, I somehow managed to coerce a pocket feeding Rainbow to bite and I battled it all the way into my net!
Who would you say is “The Most Interesting Woman in Disc Golf”?
Without a doubt, Zoe Andyke is ruling this one. She has her hands in everything I find most interesting in the disc golf world right now. She’s a top notch human that goes a zillion miles per hour and I think it’s fascinating. We never run out of things to talk about. Ever.
Who would you say is “The Most Interesting Man in Disc Golf”?
Calvin Heimburg, hands down. He doesn’t say much, and it leaves you wondering. Also, I could listen to Richard “Move Out” Wysocki talk about literally nothing for hours and still be fascinated. He needs to have his own dictionary.
You and Paige have been close now for awhile. What is it like to compete against her when the friendship is so strong?
Well, for a while, most would say she was “out of my league.” (I’m not talking about disc golf here. Haha just kidding, I am.) But the thing is, I know for a fact that I can beat her any given day. And she loves that I not only say this, but that I also truly believe it. We have so much fun talking smack when we play on the same card, even if she does hate when I rag on her about her “World Champion luck”. The competition hasn’t affected our friendship at all yet, but who knows if that will change when I start beating her this year. ;)
Any chance you guys are going to bust out another slo mo music video anytime soon?
Duh! Paige doesn’t have social media at the current moment, so I guess the pressure is on me to deliver the goods. I’m on it. We love song recommendations!