Upper DeLaveaga Wilderness Park contains a mixture of many varieties of trees and plants, both native as well as foreign transplants. In addition, the course hosts a variety of critters, from the famous banana slug, the ground mole, and of course, the great owls and red-tail hawks that hunt them.
Crowning the ridge lines are gorgeous stands of Monterey pines. These form the literal backbone of many holes on the course, and we love finding routes to throw between them. Great horned owls are often heard (but less often seen) in the giant Monterey pine stands, their hoots echoing off the wall of the cathedral of trees.
Equally important to DeLaveaga are tough old oak trees that present many unique challenges for the disc golfer. This includes complex branch structures to navigate around, and leaves that seem to be perfectly designed for catching discs (most often over the 2m mark).
Shown above is our resident red-tail hawk, which is nesting in one of the ravines. This bird can be seen perusing the more open areas on holes 1-6 and 22-23. If you own a small dog and bring it to DeLaveaga, be alert to the danger from the air.
Banana slugs are found throughout the Santa Cruz Mountains. This distinctive large slug has become famous after being adopted as the mascot of the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Deer also inhabit the course, as well as mountain lions (as evidenced by gnawed carcasses), although neither are present during the daylight. There is no risk posed by these animals to disc golfers.
Be watchful of ticks, which can carry Lyme disease. Be sure to check yourself for ticks after playing a round.
Also be careful of poison oak, particularly if you are sensitive. While the course has been de-oaked recently, it always grows back.