Gateway Disc Sports Journey Review

Gateway Disc Sports Journey Review

By now you’ve undoubtedly heard that Gateway is not just the putter company anymore.  The Journey is one of the newer molds that throws Gateway into the mainstream and legitimizes their offerings. The Journey is a straight long distance driver with plenty of glide and comfortable feel that could make it your next go-to driver.

Gateway Journey Manufacturer Notes

Before you start reading, take a moment to chuckle at the subtle meta-reference we’ve included in the Journey review image.  Think ealry 1980’s…

Here is Gateway’s description of the Journey:

The Journey has a low profile and long wing for speed and a perfect transition from the nose to the flight plate allowing it to have a long straight controllable flight with just the right amount of overstabliity.  It has enough resistance to turn for the big arms, but it’s not too overstable for the smaller arms and newer throwers.  Players of all skill level should be able to make the Gateway Journey one of the longest throwing discs in their bag.

Gateway Journey manufacturer page
Available Plastics: Evolution, Sure Grip, Diamond
Flight Rating: 12, 6, -2, 1

Gateway Journey Initial Reaction

Gateway Disc Sports Journey profile view

The Journey looks and feels like a comfortable controll driver, it bears a few resemblances to the shape of an Innova Beast but is a touch more domey.  I had expected a wider rim because of the speed rating, but in reality the Journey straddles the line between control and max distance driver.

Gateway Journey Flight Notes

The Gateway Journey is one of the most versatile and dependable discs that I have thrown.  While intended to be a distance driver, I find that its fade is gentle enough that it can be used anywhere from 275 feet (84 meters) to 425 feet (130 meters).   This allows you to reduce the number of discs in your bag if you’re a minimalist.  The sweet spot for me is around 375 feet (115 meters) where I find a very gentle and controllable turn and a light fade the brought the Journey to a forward landing.  At this distance The Journey can be thrown on a long anhyzer that pulls out at the end, or a long glidey hyzer that flattens just a touch for extra distance. Pretty much any type of shot that I need.   

At shorter distances the Journey will act like an overstable fairway driver that can hold a little turn and resist wind well.  It is also a great forehand option for fairway shots as it will filp up straight and can handle the torque.  I shy away from using it for long forehand drives since it will turn harder, but it’s still worth a consideration.  The Journey will also work for overhand shots, but it turns over more quickly than other discs on overhand shots than I am used to.

When going for distance, the Journey will show a significant turn but has a reliable fade that will usually pull it into a straight landing.  To hit 425 feet it needs to be released at a relatiely low angle to avoid wasting distance on the turn.  The Journey isn’t a wind fighter at this distance, but it’s consistent enough that you can throw with the wind and have a good idea of how it will fly. 

Light head winds can give you extra distance, heavier headwinds will push it into a hard turn but it resists the dive.  Be careful with cross winds which can catch the flight plate and toss the disc, but could also give you more distance if used properly.  Nose down with a tail wind will take this disc on a nice long trek especially if kept low to the groud.

Gateway Journey Comparables

Innova Leopard: Similar flight and glide but the Journey is significantly faster.
Innova Krait: Speed is close, Krait fades harder.
Discraft Stalker:  The Journey is longer and has a more gentle fade.
DGA Undertow: Undertow is slower but both have high glide and similar gentle turn.
Discmania FD Jackal: Both are straight and workable but Journey is faster.

Gateway Journey Final Verdict

Gateway’s Journey is a great disc.  Beginners will find it a nice overstable driver that gains easy distance, advanced players will love the controlled flight and versatility.  Combine this with Gateway’s Prophecy and you’ll have an excellent core to design your bag around.

Are you ready to enhance your bag with a Gateway Journey?  Find the perfect Journey here!

Don’t forget to follow the DG Puttheads on socials so you never miss a post and for other great content!

DG Puttheads YouTube Channel

DG Puttheads Facebook Page





Disclaimer:
We are affiliated with Infinitediscs.com but we will still provide our honest opinion and will never recommend an item unless we have tested it and believe in its quality.  We also fully support Infinite Discs and the customer service that they provide and would do so even without any affiliation.

Share
2018 Disc Golf Putter Awards

2018 Disc Golf Putter Awards

The Second Annual Chaincrasher Awards

DG Puttheads Logo
Powered by the Disc Golf Puttheads

Given the success of last year’s first Chaincrasher Disc Golf Putter Awards, we decided to make it a tradition.  If you missed the 2017 Chaincrasher Awards then all you really need to know is that you get to vote for your favorite putter that was released in 2018.  After you (our fans) choose your favorite putter of the year, then we (the Disc Golf Puttheads) will chose our favorite putter and then we’ll publish an official awards post in about two weeks.

How do you vote for your favorite putter?  We accept votes (one per person) in the comments of this post and on our Facebook post and our Twitter post, so make sure you’re following us on socials so you can catch the polls and the results. 

Don’t forget, if you vote on our social polls then you’ll have a chance to win!  This year we’re sending out a Disc Golf Puttheads stamped Judge to one lucky voter.

Official Chaincrasher Putter Awards

We noted last year that the award categories may change based on your feedback and the putters in the running.  We received a lot of feedback that our readers liked three categories the best, and we also had fewer putters this year so we cut down the awards to the following:

  • DG Puttheads Putter of the Year (Best Overall Putter)
  • Fan’s Choice
  • Best Looking Putter (honorary award)

2018 Disc Golf Putters

This year we did a better job including only and all putters that were released in 2018, but there may have been a few that were approved in 2017 then released in 2018 that we missed.  To limit the length of social posts some of the more obscure putters were left off the list (like Whamo) but you can still vote for them in the comments of this post.  You’re welcome to send us a message if you notice anything that doesn’t look right, but this list should be pretty good. 

We’ve linked each putter to our own review if we have done one, otherwise it is linked to its listing on Infinite Discs where you can find disc and flight information.

Now that you’ve seen the 2018 Disc Golf Putter Award contestants, go vote for your favorite!!

disc golf putter awards 2018





Disclaimer:
We are affiliated with Infinitediscs.com but we will still provide our honest opinion and will never recommend an item unless we have tested it and believe in its quality.  We also fully support Infinite Discs and the customer service that they provide and would do so even without any affiliation.

Share
Disc Claw Disc Golf Retriever Review

Disc Claw Disc Golf Retriever Review

Disc golf disc retrievers are quickly becoming a must-have accessory and we’ve seen a few new options hit the market over the past few years.  One disc retriever that we were recently given for the opportunity to test is the Disc Claw by Hive Disc Golf.  The Disc Claw seemed to be less known than some of the other disc retrievers on the market but we’re quickly finding more people who have tried it and most of the  conversations are positive.  Here’s what we thought of the disc golf Disc Claw retriever.

Disc Claw by Hive Disc Golf

What Is A Disc Claw?

The Disc Claw is a disc golf disc retriever by Hive Disc Golf.   Hive Disc Golf is distributed by MVP and  you can read more about them here: http://hivediscgolf.net/ 
The Disc Claw is the most direct competitor to the Golden Retriever disc golf disc retriever but has a few significant differences.

Disc Claw Retriever Design

Disc Claw Disc Golf Retriever

The Disc Claw is a metal disc retriever in the shape of a triangle which has two rods hooked into claw shapes on two of the corners and is attached to a long string on the third corner.   It is designed to throw past an unreachable disc and catch the disc with the claws as you drag it back toward you.  The Disc Claw can be folded into a flat rectangle approximately 6 inches by two inches when not in use and it weighs very little so it’s convenient to carry in your disc golf bag.

Does The Disc Claw Work?

In short, the Disc Claw works very well when used as designed.  The claws do a good job grabbing a disc and holding the disc while you reel the string in.  

The Disc Claw design has a couple of distinct advantages over retrievers on poles.  The first is that poles are often difficult to manage when extended and may not reach out far enough.  However, the Disc Claw is just as easy to drag at 20 feet out as it is at 5 feet out.  Retrievers on poles also have to have a direct line to a disc in order to hook or grab it, but the Disc Claw can be dragged along the bottom of the lake or pond and is good at grabbing.  On one occasion, I tossed a Reko in the Grand River at Burchfield Park and it sunk below a deep ridge on the bank.  I was unable to reach the disc with my pole, but a member of my group came to the rescue with a Disc Claw which was able to get below the ridge and grab my Reko during the drag.

The primary disadvantage is that the dragging design will inevitably grab sticks and leaves from the bottom of a pond and it could potentially get snagged on larger logs if you try something stupid like dangling it in a brush pile.  At that point your disc is probably lost anyway.

I would not recommend using the Disc Claw to retrieve a disc from a tree.

Disc Claw vs. Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever is another triangle shaped dragging designed disc golf disc retriever.  The primary difference between the Disc Claw and the Golden Retriver is that the Disc Claw has claws on the top and the bottom to grab a disc whereas the Golden Retriever uses two solid rods that must be dragged over the disc.

All of my trials found the Disc Claw to be superior to the Golden Retriever.  Feel free to argue, but that was my honest experience.  In every situation the Disc Claw caught my disc at a higher rate and held the disc more securely than the Golden Retriever.  The Disc Claw is able to catch discs when dragged slightly from the side as well due to the claw design but the Golden Retriever needed to be dragged much more closely to the center of the disc.  The Golden Retriever also holds discs at a much flatter angle which allows the discs to slide out more often.  Even on hard flat ground like pavement and grass, the Disc Claw catches a disc whereas the Golden Retriever really needs a soft bottom to sink a little below the disc to catch it.

Disc Claw vs Golden Retriever

Beyond functionality, there are a few other details that I will mention, but I don’t feel as though they are terribly significant.  First is that the Disc Claw runs about $20 and the Golden Retriever runs about $25.  Personally, $5 is not enough to sway me either way in this case.  The Disc Claw is also available in multiple colors whereas the Golden Retriever is only available in yellow at this time.  Again, this really doesn’t matter to me because all I really care about is getting my disc back, but I could see some people caring more about color.

Disc Claw Retriever collapsed

The Golden Retriever comes with two strings, one longer and one shorter.  These strings are a soft nylon and feel strong.  The Disc Claw comes with one single long string which is stiffer nylon and also feels strong, but maybe slightly lower quality that could wear over time.  Disc Claw also comes with a metal ring on one end to give you a better grip.  The ring is a nice addition, and an extra string would be as well, however any of these could be purchased on the side for a dollar separately.  Unwinding the string from the Disc Claw was a little slower as it would sometimes catch in the claws.  These details seem to balance out overall and ultimately I feel that none of these should be considered over functionality.

Disc Claw Disc Golf Retriever Conclusion

At $20 we recommend carrying a Disc Claw if you throw near water.  It’s easy to carry even along with other types of disc retrievers and we believe it works better than the Golden Retriever.  If you’re tired of wading out waste deep into the water for your discs then you may be ready to try a Disc Claw for yourself, check your options here!

Dave Tucker from Big Daddy Disc Golf also provides a good review here!

Don’t forget to follow the DG Puttheads on socials so you never miss a post and for other great content!

DG Puttheads YouTube Channel

DG Puttheads Facebook Page



Disclaimer:

We are affiliated with Infinitediscs.com but we will still provide our honest opinion and will never recommend an item unless we have tested it and believe in its quality.  We also fully support Infinite Discs and the customer service that they provide and would do so even without any affiliation.

Share
Gateway Disc Sports Chief OS Review

Gateway Disc Sports Chief OS Review

Overstable but offers long straight lines.  Crazy glide but provides confidence and consistency.  The Chief OS is a very versatile overstable putter which embodies many of the best characteristics of Gateway’s original Chief.  Get ready to command obedience from the course with this putt and approach disc.

Read more
Share
2018 Disc Golf Gift Guide

2018 Disc Golf Gift Guide

Holiday season is almost here and it’s time to think of disc golf gifts for your special disc golfer.  Or perhaps you are a disc golfer and you need to supply a few disc golf holiday gift ideas to your family members who haven’t got the slightest clue what gift to give to a disc golfer.  Relax, we got your back.

We’ve been playing disc golf for many years and have tested a wide variety of disc golf items and we’re ready to give you our recommendations on the best disc golf gifts for this year.  The following list is not in any particular order but should help you decide the best present to give to a disc golfer.

Read more
Share
Gateway Disc Sports Element Review

Gateway Disc Sports Element Review

The Gateway Element fills that gap between your putter and midrange when you need a light throw with some distance, but you won’t be disappointed with medium distance touch shot either.  Available in both Diamond and Sure Grip (and a few other plastics), this disc is guaranteed to add an element of finesses to your short game.

Read more
Share
Gateway Disc Sports Chief Review

Gateway Disc Sports Chief Review

The Gateway Chief will give you commanding accuracy as it flies straight as an arrow toward your target. This straight flyer is a must try especially in Gateway’s newly released Diamond plastic.

Gateway Disc Sports Chief Putter Notes

“A low profile putt & approach with rounded nose and a beaded rim.  Great for players that don’t feel comfortable with deeper rimmed putters.  Perfect for an off the tee putter when you need extra control.”

Gateway Chief Product Page

Available plastics: Diamond, Soft, Sure Grip, Super Glow, Organic, and like 50 other special Gateway plastics

Flight Rating:  3, 3, 0, 1

Gateway Chief Reactions

The Chief sits nicely in my hand and is easy to grip due to the low profile and rounded nose.  It has a flat top and feels like a low profile Wizard or even similar to Reko without a puddle top.  Obviously the new Diamond plastic has an excellent feel and is a beautiful upgrade.

Gateway Chief putter profile view

Gateway Chief By the Numbers



Flight chart courtesy of Inbounds Disc Golf

Pay close attention to this flight chart because it’s quite accurate, the Chief is deadly straight.  However, I think Gateway is being too modest with the 3 glide rating and I’d put it at 4 pushing 5.

Gateway Chief Putting Notes

The Chief is the quintessential point-and-shoot putter, but it’s not prototypical.  The Chief does not feel like an Aviar clone as it is flatter and has very little fade, you can truly just pick a ring on the chains and fire.

The Chief will glide for days so you wont need much effort to reach the basket.   It is an excellent long distance putter and can be used in just about any scenario.  Given the high glide, the Chief will hold any line and is great with any putting style.  I find it especially useful for jump putts where it allows for an easy release and maintains consistency with the extra flick of the wrist.

Gateway Chief Upshots and Approaches

I can’t say this enough, Gateway’s Chief is straight.  One of the straightest discs I’ve ever thrown.  So straight that I now use it as form indicator disc to tell me if I’m pulling my elbow through properly.

The Chief can handle quite a bit of torque which was surprising since so many straight putters turn and burn beyond 150 feet (45 meters).  I can put a 90% rip on the Chief at a slight angle and it will flip up and continue straight, or I can release flat with 75% power and still hit an incredibly straight line.  On shorter approaches I’d compare the Chief to MVP’s Atom as they can both finesse through any tight line but I can control the height of the Chief better.  Drives or approaches, the Chief handles it all.

Gateway Chief ChiefOS Putters

The Chief will hold nearly any line on long throws as well and only displays a moderate fade.  Smooth anhyzers are fun to throw with this putter since it won’t pull out but it also rarely turns into the ground.  Long hyzers will not stand up unless I put extra snap in them, rather they’ll hold long gliding hooks that land accurately.  I need to be aware of the wind on these longer shots because it will sail with the high glide.  Of course, if you want a Chief that fights the wind, you can check out the Chief OS which we’ll be reviewing soon!

The only thing I don’t like about the Chief is that the Diamond plastic becomes quite slippery when wet, perhaps more slippery than other translucent plastics.  This can be problematic in the morning with dew on the ground, but can be solved with a towel or by carrying a Sure Grip Chief!

Gateway Chief Final Verdict

The Gateway Chief is a must try putter.  This is an all-around easy to use putter as well as a torque resistant straight driving putter.  All levels of disc golfers should love the Chief.

Find the different plastic options for your Chief here!

Don’t forget to follow the DG Puttheads on socials so you never miss a post and for other great content!

DG Puttheads YouTube Channel

DG Puttheads Facebook Page

Gateway Disc Sports Chief Putter

Disclaimer:

We are affiliated with Infinitediscs.com but we will still provide our honest opinion and will never recommend an item unless we have tested it and believe in its quality.  We also fully support Infinite Discs and the customer service that they provide and would do so even without any affiliation.

Share
Disc Golf Form Indicator Discs

Disc Golf Form Indicator Discs

Perfecting your disc golf form is difficult.  If you think otherwise then you are probably not a disc golfer.  We have many techniques for working on our disc golf form from watching ourselves in the mirror to resistance training with specific disc golf equipment.  We often find the best results by utilizing many different tools and hopefully this article will provide you with another: Indicator discs.

Disc Golf Form Indicators

First off, what is a form indicator?  Have you ever thrown your disc much higher than intended and then looked down to see a deep slide mark on the turf from your heel slipping when you stepped?  This is an example of a form indicator, which is anything that can help you figure out if parts of your disc golf throwing from are good, bad, or have changed.  The idea is simple and you’ve probably had experience with it but maybe haven’t heard the term ‘form indicator’.   The most common form indicators are things like total throw distance, flight of your throw compared to the expected flight of that disc, or foot marks like in the example above.  

disc golf form indicator discs

Form indicator discs are a type of disc golf form indicator where the flight of the disc itself indicates variances in your throwing form.  Sure, you could just say that crappy form leads to crappy throws, but certain discs can give you better insight into particular parts of your throw than most discs.  There are specific aspects of my form that I find I will overlook on occasion and using a set of indicator discs can help me determine my form faults.

Evaluating Your Disc Golf Throw

One thing to note is that to use disc flight as a form indicator, you need to have practiced with that disc long enough that you know how it usually flies for you.  Discs fly differently for each disc golfer so you can’t throw a disc once and make assumptions on your form based on how someone else would expect that disc to fly.  Ideally, you’ll be able to use the discs that you currently bag as indicators so you can identify form issues if you start struggling in the middle of a round.  In my 16 years of disc golf I have thrown an enormous array of discs and these are a few that work well when focusing on these particular form aspects.  

Engaging Lower Body

Not engaging your lower body leads to a significant decrease in power and often results in less turn.  High speed discs have a tendency to mask these variances but lower speed discs might exaggerate the flight you can see where you went wrong.  I like to evaluate my lower body engagement with an understable fairway driver, specifically an Innova Star Leopard throwing from a standing position.  This forces me to properly shift my weight with little foot movement.  The Leopard is fast enough that it flips very little if I throw from a standing position and ignore my lower body.  If I engage my lower body properly, the Leopard will flip up with a slight turn and fade back gently around 325.  I specifically use Star because it doesn’t flip up as easily as my Champion so it doesn’t mask my lack of power.  I also make sure I’m using discs that are seasoned but in good condition since new discs are always more overstable.  

Other indicator discs you may consider to help you check lower body engagement would be:

Discraft Mantis

Discmania FD Jackal

Latitude 64 Maul

Reaching Back

Discraft Crush Discontinued OOP Valentine'sReaching back properly is another crucial element in generating power.  There are times when I forget to reach back far enough, maybe I pause too long before rotating, or I might not rotate my hips far enough resulting in decreased power and snap. For this indicator I like to take a slow run up and use a high speed driver with just a touch of turn.   The greater turn on lower speed drivers can over mask variances in rotation and reach and using a slow run up will help ensure my lower body is engaged properly.  If I notice that the touch of turn disappears and the flight becomes straight or even shows slight positive turn, then there is a good chance that there is something going wrong with my reach back.

Your selection will depend on your arm strength but here are my preferred discs for checking reach back:

Discraft ESP Crush

Innova Star Destroyer

Axiom Wrath

Westside Northman

Pulling Elbow Through

disc golf form indicator discThe best disc golf throwers pull their elbows through before the rest of their body during rotation, like trying to break down a door with their elbows.  This can be tough because we rotate so quickly during our disc golf throw that it is difficult to see the position of the elbow.  Sometimes this can lead to inaccurate orientation (bad aim to the left or right) but often this is masked by high speed discs or even your body’s ability to compensate. 

I like to test my elbow pull-through with a slow and very straight midrange or putter from a stand-still.  If my disc flies straight on a straight line but travels left or right it often means I am not pulling my elbow through.  This is especially true when I’m fatigued late in the round or from heat.  I often subconsciously compensate with a late release, but this becomes inconsistent and I usually hang on too long resulting in a throw too far right (I’m a RHBH thrower).  I’ve been throwing Gateway’s new Diamond Chief lately which is an excellent driving putter with an incredibly straight line.  When the Chief flies left or right but on a straight line, then I can bet I’m not pulling my elbow through properly.

Here are a few other good discs for testing you elbow:

Kastaplast Reko

Innova Dart

Dynamic Discs Judge

Throwing Nose Down

Most discs will give you some indication if you are releasing the disc nose up.  You’ll quickly see a high launch with shorter distance and often an inconsistent turn.  Some discs will show your nose angle deficiencies more than others, these are usually discs we consider nose angle sensitive or we’ll say they are not forgiving.  Higher speed drivers, overstable discs, and especially low glide discs are often more forgiving and the touch or finesse discs are usually considered less forgiving.  One disc that is a particularly good indicator of my nose angle is the MVP Ion.  When thrown nose down it holds its line for a long distance and displays a great amount of glide, but when I throw it nose up it flies much more slowly and almost floats while it performs an s-curve.  If I’m throwing the Ion well then I know that my nose angle is good.

Other discs that may be good at indicating nose angle variances include:

Dynamic Discs Warden

RPM Discs TUI

Discraft Sting

Innova Krait

All Around

Some discs are great to keep your all around form in check.  These are discs that should fly straight for anyone.  The Innova Nova is a go-to disc to make sure I’m pulling through on a straight line toward my target without off-axis torque and with a flat release angle.  The Discmania FD also fits in this category for most arm speeds.

 

Form Indicator Conclusions

Clearly there are many different aspects to your form and watching a disc is never going to give you conclusive answers to everything.  Form indicator discs are really just meant to help tip you off on a few form deficiencies that you can work on during your field work.  Sometimes these indicators are useful if you’re in the middle of a tournament, but at that point it’s best that you use a disc from your bag that you know can act as an indicator.  

One thing you’ll notice as you play disc golf longer (or maybe have already noticed) is that overstability often masks the symptoms of poor disc golf form.  If you’re not extremely experienced then it’s always a good idea to research discs that are recommended for beginners that will help you develop form the right way.  There is a reason that most discs recommended for beginners are understable.  

Do you have any disc golf form indicator discs?  If so, what are they?

 

Don’t forget to follow the DG Puttheads on socials so you never miss a post and for other great content!

DG Puttheads YouTube Channel

DG Puttheads Facebook Page

 

 

Disclaimer:

We are affiliated with Infinitediscs.com but we will still provide our honest opinion and will never recommend an item unless we have tested it and believe in its quality.  We also fully support Infinite Discs and the customer service that they provide and would do so even without any affiliation.

Share
Gateway Disc Sports Prophecy Review

Gateway Disc Sports Prophecy Review

Gateway Disc Sports has stepped up their game recently and released a number of new discs and plastics including the Prophecy.  The Prophecy is a go-to overstable midrange disc that is available in Gateway’s new Diamond plastic.  I foresee the Prophecy fitting nicely into your bag. Read more

Share