OAKHURST — Local timber sports superstar Nate Hodges is opening a new club in Oakhurst called Yosemite Axe Throwing.
“I’m hoping to open this weekend but with the end of the year and holidays approaching, it’s taking longer than I anticipated to bind an insurance policy,” Hodges told SNO this week.
The new club, which features nine individual throwing lanes, is located at 40761 Highway 41 — within axe-throwing distance to Smokehouse 41 barbecue.
For those looking for a unique, last-minute Christmas gift, the club has gift certificates available for purchase on its website.
General admission pricing starts at $30 an hour and the club also will have options to host small or large group parties up to 50 people and private events.
Hodges says he has designed the new club to be “family-friendly.”
“Kids eight-years-old and older can throw axes,” he said. “And we will have small games and activities for younger children.”
The club will be open seven days a week: Monday to Thursday from noon to 8 p.m., Friday from noon to 10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The only other club like it in the area — Bad Axe Throwing in Fresno — opened on Palm earlier this year.
Axe throwing is actually one of the country’s fastest-growing sports. Clubs are opening across the country as nationally televised lumberjack competitions draw millions of viewers and celebrities and pro athletes post videos of themselves in action at the new clubs.
Once the home of a thriving lumber mill, North Fork has hosted the annual Loggers Jamboree — the Super Bowl of area lumberjack competitions — for more than fifty years and today, North Fork has become a hot bed for timber sports athletes like Hodges.
North Fork’s Hodges, 35, is already a local lumberjack legend. He’s won the Loggers Jamboree 11 times and this past July, placed second overall at the 2019 Stihl Timbersports U.S. National Championships.
Sponsored by ArborWorks, an Oakhurst-based tree-trimming company, Hodges began competing in lumberjack competitions when he was 19 and now wants to teach others the proper techniques for handling and throwing an axe.
“I couldn’t be happier to start a new business that incorporates the sport I am so passionate about,” he said. “This sport is a huge part of my life and to share the experience and fun with my community is a dream come true”