Blog 80, 11/28/10 - Christmas Gift Ideas 2

Here are five more ideas for gifts that I'm pretty sure will meet with approval from the golfer(s) in your life. As I mentioned yesterday, I either own, have tried or have seen, and can recommend everything here.
∑ - This could be considered a 'main present' for a close family relative; probably a son or daughter.
µ - This is a considerable gift, but it didn't quite break the bank. You looked for it specifically - not a whim.
π - Genuinely thoughtful, but inexpensive. You didn't just pick up the first thing you saw.
Ω-  A nice gesture and not totally unappreciated. But you just sort of picked it up while out shopping for something else.

Scottish Caddies

Ron Colby is a golf nut/former caddie and a filmmaker/producer of some note whose production company - Artists Confederacy - is involved in numerous TV, stage and film projects the latest of which is this wonderful 69-minute-long documentary in which caddies from Royal Dornoch, Brora, Turnberry and elsewhere give us a humorous, poignant and revealing look into their life on the links. There are countless highlights, but by far the most enjoyable parts come when the more experienced loopers, some of whom embody the stereotypical image of the irreverent, ruddy, whisky-swilling lackey, describe their most memorable bags.

Price: $19.95 (order here).
Rating: π

Tour Striker
tourstrikerInvented by Martin Chuck, the Director of Golf at Tetherow GC in Bend, OR., the Tour Striker is an ingenious training aid that will almost certainly improve inconsistent golfers' ball-striking by forcing them to hit down on the ball. Poor contact invariably results when an effort is made to get under the ball and loft it into the air. The club either ploughs into the ground an inch before the ball or the leading edge makes contact, producing a skinny chaser over which you have no control. For the Tour Striker's sweetspot to contact the ball, the shaft must be leaning forward at impact, mirroring the tour pro's impact position. Just transfer the swing you develop with the Tour Striker to your conventional irons.
Price: $99.99 steel, $119.95 graphite (various lofts available (order here).
Rating: µ

True Linkswear Tour Shoe
truetourshoeWith our recommendation of the Kikkor Eppik a couple of weeks ago and now this, regular readers might wonder what the fascination is with quirky, unorthodox-looking golf shoes. True enough, both the Eppik and the True Tour might not look like something your dad would wear, but don't run away with the idea they're all about contemporary styling - they perform too. You might not feel 100% confident wearing the True Tour on a foul day on a hilly course prone to getting muddy, but the full-grain leather upper is waterproof, and the lateral stability bars do afford surprisingly Endorsed by Ryan Moore, the True Tour weighs in at only 11 ounces, and omits the mid-sole and spikes to put your feet close to the ground.
Price: $159

Amphibian Towel
amphibiantowelOkay, it's a golf towel. But this is no cotton rag. This one costs $29.99! It has to be said, if I had a spare $30 to spend on golf equipment, a new towel would be the third to last thing I'd think of spending it on - just beating out 300 pencils and a shoe bag (why get a shoe bag when you can drive to the course in your golf shoes, play golf in them, and wear them in the clubhouse?), but I'd have no complaints if this was under the tree on Christmas Day. It is the Rolls Roy Aston Martin of golf towels, possessing a 'cotton jaquard' exterior flap and a bamboo terry interior which absorbs three times more water than cotton but dries three times faster. Perfect for both wet and dry days.   

$29.99 (order here).

Bushnell Tour V2
The GPS/Laser Rangefinder debate rages on which means neither method for finding out how far you have left to the hole has yet assumed superiority over the other. You get a GPS unit if you like the full-color LCD display and all its additional capabilities like stat recording, telling you how far you hit each shot, and giving you the distance to the front, center and back of the green; have a shaky hand; like to just whip the device out of your bag and have an instant reading; aren't the type who would easily scratch the lens of a rangefinder.
You get the laser option if you don't care for having to download course data onto your device, and like pin-point accuracy (whereas GPS is usually accurate to within a meter, laser has you working in inches). If you ask for a laser rangefinder, you can't go wrong with the Tour V2 which has three targeting modes - Pinseeker (zero in on the cup), Scan (pan across the landscape viewing a continuously-updated display of the distances between you and various targets), and Slope (gives accurate distance reading after measuring angle of uphill or downhill grade). It has 5x magnification, and can measure distances up to 1,000 yards so you'd have to hit a pretty wayward drive for it not to work. It weighs only 6.6oz, comes with a 3-volt lithium battery and a carrying case.
Price: Stared life at $399 but you should find one now for $299 or even less.







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