Golf For Women
Man do I have a lot of portable USB/Lightning devices: Two iPads, a 7-inch Android Tablet, a 10 inch Galaxy Tablet, iPhone, Samsung Phone. That’s not to mention all of the portable golf devices I have which charge via USB: Portable golf GPS units, GPS Watches, GameGolf, Arccos, Mobitee PIQ, TLink GPS. Woa wait a minute. I have even more devices that charge off of USB. I have two portable Sony cameras which rely on micro USB charging.
HubMax in action, charging my phone and a Golf Buddy GPS
When I’m out and about or traveling, invariably one of my zillions of devices’ battery dies. That’s where my new myCharge HubMax Portable Charger comes into play. HubMax is a great USB/Lightning charger. Let me tell you this, myCharge is in charge!
HubMax is a portable charging device which has a Lightning cable for Apple devices like iPhones, Apple Watches, and iPads. It also has a built in micro-USB for standard devices like smartphones, fitness devices, tablets and so on. And in case those two cables don’t cover it, there’s a standard USB port on the side. This is perfect for some of my golf GPS watches which have a standard USB plug on one end and a bizarre proprietary charging setup on the unit.
The HubMax is one of a series of four Hub units. The HubMax is the 2nd to the top of the list in terms of the amount of power it holds, at 10,050mAh. The biggest unit, the HubUltra has a capacity of 12,000mAh while the smallest unit, the HubMini, clocks in at 3,000mAh.
The Max provides me about 6x the battery life of my phone. When I’m out on the HOG World Tour I can use a lot of battery power between GPSing golf holes, shooting pictures, and sharing photos and content from the course with my phone. Now I need not worry about having enough battery life.
The unit’s Lithium ion battery and technology allows it to charge very fast, up to 50% faster than comparable units. It also charges devices up to 65% faster. Great to plug it in during lunch, between two rounds of 18.
The footprint is about 2x as thick as a smartphone, but not as tall or wide.
The unit plugs into the wall (photo below). The charging prongs conveniently fold in for transport.
The myCharge Hub series runs in price from $49 for the Mini to $149 for the Ultra. My unit, the HubMax, runs $99. On and off the course this is a fantastic accessory for the golfer or the golf spectator. A portable charger like this would make a great gift for the golfer who has lots of electronic golf gadgets.
I love to walk when I golf, but with a bad back I don’t carry my bag that often. So I like to use a push cart (“trolley” for my friends in the UK). I’ve had the BIG MAX Auto-Fold FF unit in play since this summer and put it through a very rigorous test battery. Yes, being one of the world’s top golf bloggers can be rough. You know, having to play golf and “evaluate” great golf equipment, apparel, and accessories. I do it for you, the HOG patron. Now let’s take a look at the BIG MAX Auto-Fold FF cart/trolley.
Big Max Auto-Fold FF in all its glory
The BIG Max Auto-Fold FF (okay that’s taking a lot of typing, so let’s call it the BMAF from this point on) is a 3-wheel push cart/trolley designed to make walking the course easy. The two rear wheels are large and wide and the front wheel a little smaller but still a wide tread. The wheels and wide wheelbase help the unit push very easy and ride very smoothly. I have a few other trolleys which shorter wheelbases and smaller wheels, and those designs seem to accentuate bumps and hills. The BMAF handles bumps and hills much better.
BIG MAX Auto-Fold FF Push Cart/Trolley
The frame of this unit is extremely solid and sturdy. Big Max makes many push carts for the rental pool of courses, and those must be tough. That knowledge and experience in design carries into the BMAF. That said, the unit is still quite light and easy to lift into the trunk of my car. When folding up, the two rear wheels can be easily removed.
The handle is big and solid with nice padding. That helps to make pushing the unit and steering it easy.
The golf bag is secured onto the cart with some nice and easy to use thick bungee cables with solid hooks. It’s a good way to secure the bag. The unit can cary bags up to the large “tour” size.
Speaking of the trunk, the unit folds for storage and transportation. Folding is very easy. In fact, no “latches” or buttons or anything else need be manipulated to fold it. Just grab the front wheel and pull up and it folds nicely.
I don’t have a large space in my trunk yet the folded unit still fits easily with my clubs (photo below).
In the trunk with the clubs
The accessory compartment (photo below) is located underneath the scorecard holder, conveniently behind the main handle. The pouch is very large. I bet it would easily hold 3-4 dozen golf balls. I put my GPS, phone, camera, sunglasses, cigars, cutter, tees, glove and small children in there.
Accessory storage, drink holder, umbrella holder
There is an umbrella mount (main photo). That’s great to have for not only when it is raining, but when it is bloody hot here in the desert. I’ll put up the umbrella to give myself shade.
A drink holder connects to the side of the handle with a “quick lock,” along with a GPS holder. Both are conveniently located for easy access.
The overall experience of using the Big Max Auto-Fold FF trolley is fantastic. It is extremely easy and enjoyable to push, despite its large footprint. It rides smoothly and provides a very solid and stable platform for my golf bag and all the rest of the stuff I bring onto the course.
On my next Scotland trip I might ship my Big Max there in advance!
Found this in the bushes a couple of days ago:
Kirkland Signature Golf Balls
After holding this ball in my own hand I now confirm that Costco/Kirkland brand Signature Tour golf balls are not a joke. It looked and felt like a Titleist ProV1. How can I tell if a ball “feels” like another just by holding it? It’s a skill only the top golf geeks and bloggers on the planet have I suppose. The cover feels soft and tacky, just like any tour-level golf ball. The dimple pattern is similar to a ProV1. And we all really know how Kirkland operates. These may very well be ProV1’s, made by Titleist for Kirkland. Or they may be made in one of the other, very few, golf ball plants in the world that make the balls for all ball brands.
I can see the next Costco shopping list now:
- 14 year supply of toilet paper
- 2400 pack of tampons
- 16 pound block of cheese
- 55 inch TV
- Tour level golf balls
- 400 pack of AA batteries
- Honda Accord
- Box of 12 frozen pizzas
I gave this ball to a buddy who plays ProV1’s and he’s going to try it out and give me some opinions.
If you’re reading Costco, you can send me a couple dozen and I’ll post an honest review of them.
I’ve played different versions of “Vegas Golf,” the game where you have casino chips representing different good and bad situations that happen on the golf course. Recently I put the Vegas Golf VIP version into play with my group. $42 later I think it worked out quite well. Let’s take a look.
Vegas Golf VIP Edition
This is a golf game played between 2-4 golfers. It wouldn’t be possible to play more than four due to the players being in different groups. The game comes with 19 casino-style chips. Each chip represents an event that can occur on the course, like making a birdie or 3-putting. Some events are positive, like the eagle, birdie, 3-pars-in-a-row chips. Some events are not good, like the water hazard, 3-putt, anger, lost ball chips.
During play the “chip keeper” will hand out chips to players as the events occur. In my round yesterday for instance, I hit a tree on the first tee shot. Yes, I captured the tree chip. If another golfer hit a tree after that, he/she would get the chip. There are certain chips that are very active, like the 1-putt chip.
The group decides on a bet value per chip. In the case of my group, we decided on $1.00 per chip. So if a player ended up with say the birdie chip at the end of 18 holes, he would collect $1.00 from each of the other players in the group. If a player ended up with one of the bad chips, like the 3-putt chip, he would pay each of the other players in the group $1.00.
During the round it is quite fun to razz your opponents and hand them the tree chip or the lost ball chip. It’s great to get rid of that one. It’s also great to capture the birdie chip, and hope to be able to keep it for the whole round.
This version of the game comes with a nice accessory bag to store the chips in. It clasps onto the golf bag for easy use and access.
Vegas Golf VIP is quite fun. My group had a blast playing it, except for the guy who ended up with the tree chip, worm burner chip, and water hazard chip. I don’t think he was too thrilled. But I digress.
This $50 valued golf game is $29 on Amazon and is a very fun and reasonably priced golf gift for the holidays, Christmas, Father’s Day, birthdays.
I’ve now been to St Andrews, the Home of Golf, on three separate occasions. I plan to return in 2018 and I know where my group will be staying, Albany Apartments. It’s the best combination of price, convenience, location, and quality of the many places I’ve stayed in the “Auld Grey Toon.” Let’s take a look:
Location Location Location
Albany Apartments is located on the famous North Street in St Andrews. North Street intersects with Golf Place, the primary access road to the Old Course. I would guess the total yardage from Albany Apartments to the Old Course is length of a short par-4. A long iron to Golf Place, then a 9-iron to the 18th green. It’s all of maybe a 90 second walk. Albany is a 45 second walk from the most famous pub in Scotland, the Dunvegan.
If one heads the opposite direction of the Old Course, the center of St Andrews is a 3-5 minute walk. Shops, restaurants, golf shops, golf shops, pubs, golf shops, pubs, are all very close by. Did I mention golf shops and pubs?
One minor drawback to Albany’s great location is that it could be “too close” to the pubs, if you know what I mean. On a warm summer night with the windows open one might be subjected to the horrendous and embarrassing sound of 10 drunk americans singing “Bye Bye Miss American Pie” at 2:00 a.m. like I was.
Albany features three bedrooms, located on the 3rd floor of the structure (see outside photo). They’re accessed via a rather fun spiral staircase, as is the 2nd floor from the street level. The bedrooms upstairs are spacious and feature a bathrooms with showers.
On the main level, one level up from the street, is a kitchen, spacious reading/sitting/TV room, restroom with bath, and a back deck which is located in a secluded garden (first image). The kitchen is fully appointed with a dishwasher, refrigerator, oven, microwave, and washer/dryer. There are even some staples in the cupboards.
The building was built in the late 1800’s, but renovated and modernized in roughly the mid-2000’s. The inside is very nicely appointed with quality furniture, carpeting, fine woodwork, and lots of great golf memorabilia to enjoy. The space is warm, clean, inviting, classy, and extremely comfortable.
Current pricing runs 50 pounds per person, with a four person minimum and three night minimum. This is a very reasonable price. Consider that a single room across the street at the Ardgowan Hotel ran me 120 pounds per night in 2012, and the rooms there are barely bigger than a sardine can. With a group of four or more golfers the cost per golfer, especially considering all of the great offerings I mentioned above, is unmatched. What a great value. To bring the cost down even more, a group of six could comfortably occupy the Albany Apartments.
Location, amenities, quality, space, price… No hotel in St Andrews can come close in any of those categories. If you are putting together a golf buddy trip to Scotland of four or more golfers and are looking for St Andrews hotels, look no further.
Albany Apartments website
Ardgowan Hotel St Andrews Review
St Fairmont St Andrews Hotel Review
Kingsbarns Golf Links Review
Carnoustie Golf Links Review
Balcomie Links at Crail Review
St Andrews New Course Review