You’ve figured out what irons you’ll play this year. You probably even know what ball you’re going to play too. But your bag?
Have you even thought about your bag?
You know, that decaying mess of fabric and plastic that holds your precious arsenal.
It’s time to really think about your next cart bag. Do you simply want the most pockets available? That would be the Nike Performance Cart II. But do the numbers really tell the whole story?
Are you a sucker for “full length dividers”? Careful what you wish for. When a company states “full length dividers”, does it mean two, three? It could mean almost anything, but most likely, it DOES NOT mean 14.
Are you a brand loyalist, or do you simply want the best bag out there? For some of you, those two wonderful ideas may overlap.
This year’s Most Wanted Cart Bag Guide will arm you will the info you need to make an intelligent decision about your next cart bag.
- Storage – How many pockets? Is the storage useful, or did the manufacturer throw as many as they could into the bag to run up the numbers? Are they insulated, forward facing, zippered, velour lined, hard shelled, etc.?
- Dividers – All bags in our guide have 14 or 15 dividers, the deciding factor here – are they full length (by full length, do they actually keep one handle’s grip from entwining another – rubber on rubber action is a fail).
- Functionality – Forward facing pockets? Easy to maneuver the bag with included handles? Does the insulated pocket actually hold anything? Are you going to be able to easily slide clubs in and out, or do they get hung up on the bag’s innards, or on other clubs?
- Features – Towel loop, strap tunnel, glove spot, insulated pocket, Velour style pockets, tee holders, torque strap, ball holders, spot for your GPS…
All of the bags in this lineup fit well in a cart, they all stand just fine, so we’ve kept the details focused on what you asked for.
OGIO Chamber – $304
- Good – 14 Full Length Dividers, actually innovative Silencer system holds clubs in place and keeps them from rattling, a “torque” strap on the back keeps the bag from rotating in the cart, a zipper-less ball pocket, and a hard shell protective pocket for your laser (I just had my laser destroyed by an airline – this would have saved it) This bag has pretty much every feature you want and more.
- Bad– This bag tips the scales at 9+ pounds. $300 price tag will turn some heads just long enough for eyes to roll.
- Notes – This is one of the most well thought out bags we’ve seen. Features that other brands haven’t even considered yet OGIO has already built into the Chamber Golf Bag. If you don’t mind the weight and the price tag, this bag is tough to beat.
Sun Mountain C130 – $219
- Good – The bag is almost a steal at $219. FIFTEEN (15) full length dividers and all the features you need. Love the molded handles on the top to help maneuver the bag.
- Bad – Comparatively small number of pockets. Putter well isn’t fully separate.
- Notes – With two towel loops, lots of storage, and a 15th slot, you won’t lack for anything with the Sun Mountain C130.
Nike Performance Cart II – $240
- Good – 14 Full Length Dividers, storage for days, plenty of features, but without blowing out the weight (barely over the 6 pound mark) 19 pockets – if you’re a storage addict, the Nike Performance Cart II might be your bag, plus the bag is water resistant!
- Bad – 6 of the 19 pockets are inside of other pockets (but that’s still 13 external pockets)
- Notes – 19 pockets! Maybe if they cut back to a reasonable 10 they’d break the 6 pound mark, but who cares, this bag is a workhorse with style. Don’t let the 9.5′ top scare you away, there’s plenty of room for all your clubs.
Wilson Staff Performance – $199
- Good – 14 full-length dividers and the only bag in the guide with external ball storage. Large metal towel loop, and a slanted top to give you better access to your clubs when on the cart.
- Bad – Not as feature-heavy as some other bags
- Notes – The Wilson Staff Performance Bag deserves runner-up status. It’s a solid bag, and with just one or two more slightly deeper pockets and maybe an added feature, this bag could take the win. Huge towel loop will let you hang your towel as well as other accessories if you’re a Frogger Brush lover like me.
Callaway ORG 15 – $249
- Good – 6 pound contender that carries its weight well. Features, storage, it’s all there in the Callaway ORG 15.
- Bad – Only 9 full length dividers.
- Notes – Give us 14 full length dividers and there wouldn’t be anything left to complain about.
Nike M9 Cart II – $179
- Good – External putter well for the win, plenty of storage and features
- Bad – Lack of full length dividers creates a bit of club catching inside the bag.
- Notes – The Nike M9 Cart II is a total sleeper pick. It has most of the features of more expensive bags. It’s just lacking the full length dividers and with that comes a little bit of sticking when pulling clubs out.
Orlimar PSP+ 14.9 – $159
- Good – Plenty of storage, lots of features, the price is right
- Bad – Pockets are not as spacious as they could be.
- Notes – For the price this bag is almost impossible to beat. The Orlimar PSP+ 14.9 has more features than some bags costing an extra Ben Franklin (that’s $100 for those that missed the reference). Everything you “need” in a cart bag is here sans full length dividers.
Callaway ORG 14 – $209
- Good – Under 5 pounds with a solid mixture of storage and features, 10 zippered pockets
- Bad – The lack of full length dividers is the biggest thing holding the ORG 14 back.
- Notes – The Callaway ORG 14 is on that cusp of brilliance; it just needs more dividers. Other than that, hand this bag to anyone, don’t tell them what’s missing and they’d probably be perfectly happy gaming it.
Tour Edge Exotics Xtreme Cart 2 – $119
- Good – At just $119 how could you go wrong?
- Bad – Missing a feature or two (ok, four) but….
- Notes – If you’re budget shopping for a decent cart bag, at a great price, look no further than the Tour Edge Exotics Xtreme. You just found your new bag.
LoudMouth Disco Balls Black Cart Bag – $200
- Good – 7 zippered pockets all have plenty of storage space in them. Also has an external putter well.
- Bad – No plastic/rubber lift handles on the top, and not as many pockets as some of you might like. Only 5+1 full length dividers.
- Notes – Loud, and not particularly striking at the first glance, but when you dig into it, you find that the LoudMouth Disco Ball is a solid bag with features that get lost in the aesthetics. About a year behind on many “modern” features.
TaylorMade Juggernaut – $249
- Good – Huge focus on modern design and storage – and it works within those parameters.
- Bad – Focus on modern design seems to have forgotten that at $249 many will expect 14 full length dividers.
- Notes – I may not agree with TaylorMade’s design sense, but they’ve done something different here and that’s to be applauded. This bag is about 95% of what we want. Add more full length dividers, toss in a cart strap tunnel and a glove patch, and the Juggernaut could be a true contender.
TaylorMade Catalina – $199
- Good – The TaylorMade Catalina is a functional bag, featuring modern design, enough storage for the average guy, and a handle on the front (traditional twist on a modern bag?)
- Bad – Not enough of anything. Could use more storage, more full length dividers, and more features.
- Notes – At first I thought TaylorMade was studying up on the decoy effect, but really I think this is a square bag that offers just enough to please TaylorMade fans.
Callaway Chev ORG – $189
- Good – Under 5 pounds. Ample storage, a couple of pronounced features
- Bad – Only 3.5 full length dividers, not enough features to wow.
- Notes – The Callaway ORG is a bag I want to love, but with only 3.5 full length dividers – I’m left wanting more (why include a .5 divider?)
Nike Sport Cart II – $139
- Good – Very lightweight bag with plenty of storage, especially when you consider how lightweight it is.
- Bad – Only three full length dividers. No real handles on top.
- Notes – I know Nike wanted to create a bag at a more consumer friendly price point, but with the Sport Cart II they sacrificed in areas that matter enough to keep this from being a contender.
Izzo Champion – $179
- Good – Decent amount of storage
- Bad – Only 3 full length dividers and limited features
- Notes – This is a bag that finds itself in a pricing pickle. It has enough going for it that there’s little doubt the Izzo Champion will get the job done, but it’s also expensive enough that most won’t have much of a reason not to consider better options.
Izzo Locker – $159
- Good – Easy to grab handles, ample storage
- Bad – The external putter attachment thing is questionable at best. If you don’t break your putter, it seems likely it will fall off. Clubs bind when being removed, and the putter well divider catches bigger putter grips with ferocity.
- Notes – I want to like the Izzo Locker, I really do, but it is a let down. It’s enough bag to get the job done, but there’s nothing extraordinary about it. The effort spent on the external putter “mount” should have been directed towards the additional of real/usable features.
Share Your Opinions
Now that you’ve had a chance to see what separates this year’s best bags, we’d love to hear what you’ll be gaming this year and why. We know the top bags in this guide will serve you well, and we look forward to hearing which bag wins by your own personal standards.