Product Review: DGA Elite Shield disc golf bag

By Jack Trageser — Rattling Chains staff

After using the DGA Elite Shield bag for more than a month, it is my favorite bag ever, as well as the best accessory product ever marketed by Disc Golf Association. Time will tell whether it passes the all-important durability test, but it seems to be very well equipped in that regard as well.

It should be mentioned right that one’s preference of disc golf bags — like the golf discs they are designed to carry — is a highly subjective matter. Most significant in this regard is size. Some prefer the minimalist approach — a bag that is as small as possible and meant to hold a few discs and maybe a water bottle. Others have a rather different philosophy, and represent the “If there is even the remotest chance I might need it, I will carry it” school of thought. These folks want to carry 30 or more discs, two wardrobe changes, enough food and water to survive in the wilderness for 10 days, and seven miscellaneous pockets and straps full of other stuff.

The DGA Elite Shield bag.

The DGA Elite Shield bag.

I prefer something between these two extremes. I want room for about 14 discs, a large water bottle, and the outer layer of clothing I’ll remove halfway through the round. I’d also like several convenient storage pockets for my snacks and little stuff, too. And, now that I’ve gotten used to backpack-style straps, my bag must at least include that as an option as well. Finally, I like to keep the cost reasonable — $75 or cheaper.

Keep in mind these personal preferences when I say that the Elite Shield bag by DGA is the ideal bag for me.

The company is best known for its dominant share of baskets installed worldwide and its pioneering status in the sport (perhaps you’ve heard of “Steady” Ed Headrick, the PDGA’s first member, the father of disc golf and the inventor of the Pole Hole catching devise?), but DGA also markets its own line of discs, apparel and accessories.

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Product Review: NutSac disc golf bag

By P.J. Harmer — Rattling Chains staff

I love my disc golf bag.

I have a Revolution bag. It’s loaded for so many things and I even have it personalized with a few patches. There are two plus-sized water bottle holders and room for many, many discs.

The reason I accepted the bag when it was given to me by a friend was because it could hold so much — my camera included. But here’s what I quickly found out — when I was playing, most of the time I didn’t carry my camera.

The craftsmanship of the NutSac is quite impressive. (photo by P.J. Harmer)

Instead, I had a lot of dead air in my bag — where the 8-10 discs I carried rattled around.

Comfort wasn’t an issue. Quality wasn’t an issue. Practicality was.

Several months ago, I was at a sporting goods store in New York’s Capital Region. This store accepts trade-ins and such. Hanging on the rack was a NutSac, priced at about 20 bucks. I had a gift card and I thought about it. In fact, the person with me pointed out that I should grab it because I had been thinking about it.

I looked at it. I stared. I thought about the NutSac.

After debating, I realized if I was going to get a NutSac, I didn’t want one that has been used. I don’t know what they did with that NutSac, did I? Exactly. I likened it to buying a new baseball glove and having the chance to break it in and make it your own.

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Company Closeup: Big Hyzer Bag Company looking to make its mark

In the world of disc golf, bags are becoming more and more important to players.

For those taking the game a bit serious, especially.

It’s not likely, after all, to see a professional-level player — or many amateurs, for that matter — carrying a small sling bag that carries four or five discs.

No, the bigger bag is becoming more and more prevalent, especially for tournament players. Bags need to do more than carry discs, though. There has to be enough room for snacks, drinks, towels, jackets and anything else.

How about a stool?

Those tournament days can get long and with backups on some holes almost inevitable, one might want to sit down.

Enter Big Hyzer Bag Company.

Owner John Chamness, an amateur-level player from Huntsville, Alabama, has been playing the game seriously for eight years, but has been involved with the game since 1985. That’s when his step-father used to take him to the original University of Alabama-Huntsville course where the targets were concrete cylinders used for storm sewers. At that time, they just used standard freestyle Frisbees.

Coming from that point to making bags that he hopes will compete in an already competitive market was a long road for Chamness, the 2007 Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) Volunteer of the Year.

The concept of Big Hyzer Bag Company came in 2007 when Chamness and his friend, Will Kelly, went to an A-Tier event at the SportsPlex in Athens, Alabama. Another friend, Chad Smith, was on the final card with pro Steve Rico and the duo wanted to support Smith.

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