25 years after PING first introduced it as a revolutionary carry bag with legs that were activated when the bag was set down, the PING Hoofer continues on as a part of the company’s lineup. The Hoofer is the only bag in PING’s lineup offering a 5-way top (the others are 2, 4 or 14-way) with 2 full-length dividers separating the clubs. The bag weighs a somewhat portly five-and-a-half pounds, which is above average in our tests (of course we lean toward testing lighter bags that are still full-featured). The nylon and polyester bag features 8 pockets, including a water-resistant valuables pocket, a sunglasses pocket, and rangefinder and water-bottle pockets. You can never claim not to be organized with this bag!

SCORE
87
GRADE
B+
Club Storage
93
Pockets/Storage
86
Carrying Impressions
87
Rain Hood
98
Cost/Value
86

The attached rain hood snaps in a pouch underneath the cushioned hip pad. And as with the other “Enhanced Ergonomics” (E2) bags in the PING line, there are two sliding shoulder pads with a strap slider to allow for a backpack fit (though the bag can be carried using one strap as well). There is also a reinforced bracket for the legs, and a wider 24-inch leg span for this latest release. Overall, the Hoofer is a solid bag but its days of being revolutionary seem to be in the past. To add a little confusion into the mix, we have seen this bag alternately referred to as both the “Hoofer” and the “Hoofer II”.

Retail price: $189.99
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Note: To keep players on their toes, manufacturers often use the same model name across multiple years for carry bags, making larger changes to bag design every 2-3 years. This review is for the 2014 PING Hoofer carry bag. This Hoofer is not to be confused with the PING Hoofer 14, which has a 14-way top with 6 full-length dividers and weighs approximately ½ pound more than the PING Hoofer).


The PING Hoofer has a 9″ x 8″ reinforced 5-way top, which we think most players will be just fine with – it offers a balance between club storage and minimal sections, not too overboard as with a 14-way, and not so few that your clubs grips will get stuck together. Looking from the top of the bag, the opening is split roughly into thirds horizontally across the top by two full-length dividers, and the top two sections are then split vertically into two separate sections. This 2-2-1 split from the top of the bag works for us, and though the full-length divider might add some weight, it is minimal compared to the weight that comes from the extra features in the bag.

There are eight total pockets – seven zippered pockets and one open beverage sleeve. It’s a lot of different places to squirrel away your goods, and the tradeoff is the additional weight you’ll lug around.

PING Hoofer

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The Hoofer also features an adjustable cord and loop on the right side of the bag to secure an umbrella, and a plastic ring for attaching a towel, laser or GPS device of choice. There is no tee holder(s) on the bag, scorecard slot, or Velcro patch to secure a glove, available on some competing bags.

One twist (call it an innovation?) is that the PING Hoofer rain hood is stored in a zippable storage pocket underneath the hip pad. That means you are just that less likely to have left your rain hood at home. The hood includes a strap with an elastic snap to attach inside the storage pocket so the hood won’t go missing. Once you remove the hood, you have five buttons that snap to the top of the bag to secure the hood, and a portion of the base of the hood is elastic, allowing the hood to snugly fit the top of the bag without the fit issues that arise with competing bags and hoods. Well done all around.

While the PING Hoofer is a bit more bulky than we would ideally like, it is still a comfortable bag with a good amount of padding and adjustment capabilities:

From a design standpoint, if you are looking for something that will make you stand out in a crowd, it won’t be the PING Hoofer. The color options are relatively staid: black, charcoal/black/red, carbon/mach (huh?) blue, and carbon/steel/leaderboard (market THAT!) lime.

At a retail price of nearly $190, the Ping Hoofer is one of the more expensive bags in our reviews, though the price isn’t much higher than other full-featured bags. The Hoofer will have everything you want, but you’ll wind up with a bag both heavier and more bulky than others. We won’t scoff at you for buying the PING Hoofer, but there are other attractive options if you are looking to save a few bucks or want a lighter bag.

Retail price: $189.99
Amazon.com: Check price now
Golfsmith: Check price now