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GolfLogix Green Map & Yardage Book. Unofficial Forum Member Review. Summary of Pluses & Minuses: Yardage pages ... + clear graphics provide good "bird's eye view" of hole layout; 100-125-150-200 yard colored layup arcs. - zero line at an arbitrary distance behind back-most tee, not at the back edge; 200 yd layup arc missing on a few holes; no elevation changes shown. Also note relative size of yard scale changes on pages for different holes - eg. Par 3 vs 4 vs 5 - but it's always in 10-yard increments. * image posted sideways to show full page view. Green maps ... + two detailed 5-yard grid views overlaid on topo contour lines ... (1) Heat Map colored scale represents % Slope and direction of dominant breaks, and (2) Putt Break shows smaller, more detailed arrows at, say, about 4 feet apart indicating all the breaks around the green. - (not really a "minus" but an fyi..) printed pages show green facing relative direction as if you're approaching from middle of fairway, so when standing on the green at your ball you need to be careful to focus on the section of the green map containing your ball and the flag (or: re-orient the map to line up with the direction you're facing from your ball to the flag). Background So this past Spring .. for the first time ever .. my wife and I joined a golf (-only, vs a "country") club that has 3 x 9-Hole courses; any two combined form approximately the same rating / slope / length 18 hole track (eg. any 2x9 combo is approx 69.6/132/6100 yds from the White, regular Men's, tees). So with 27 holes .. and two sets of tees I'd generally use: White or Senior/Green .. I thought I might try to find a yardage book to help me learn the lines and distances off the tees, see the intermediate hazards, potential layup spots and their distances from the green, etc. I know you can DIY it via Google Earth and other online resources (including DECADE if you're a subscriber) or smartphone GPS apps, but I searched around for some printed golf-specific, ready-made alternatives in the hopes I could find something both well-marked and easy to read, and also reasonably priced, plus one that I could quickly and easily refer to on-course. GolfLogix, makers of a subscription-based app, also publish books that appear to be an ok blend of function, readability and price - $50 for a 3 x 9 / 27-hole course; normally $40 for 18 hole courses. I ordered on their website and book arrived within a week. First Impressions Book comes packaged with a basic clear plastic jacket, not super thick but a nice touch and enough to protect your book as you carry it around; outer dimensions approx 7 1/8" high x 4 3/8" wide .. so should fit into most pant/short back pockets. The book's pages are fairly heavy stock so "should" (quote-unquote) stand up to some wear and tear over time (no - did not test the paper for water resistance lol). You can write notes in the margins of the pages, plus there are also a few blank "Notes" pages at the back of the book. The colors and graphics are good and afford a good overview of each hole layout. Yardages Here's a composite view of a Par 4 - Par 3 - Par 5 ... * Note the grids lines are in 10-yard increments, with the heavier vertical & horizontal lines forming 50-yard squares - eg. tee shot landing zones. And this is where you start to see a few shortcomings, eg. ... The zero line for the entire hole is not at the back edge of the back-most tee but at some arbitrary spot behind it ... so instead of directly taking a yardage # difference at the tee you're playing .. eg. it's 80 yards up from that back-most edge .. you need to find the # for your tee on the right-hand scale and use that # to subtract from points ahead on the hole to get a distance to each desired point. No elevation changes indicated nor are any topographic features shown, eg. mounds or side slope in the fairways - it's a "flat" bird's eye view of the general hole layout. Relative yardage scale changes on different holes - since different length holes are all made to fit onto the same size printed page a Par 3 yardage scale is different than a Par 4 which is different from a Par 5. Initially I thought I'd mark up my own small "ruler" to overlay atop a hole so I could quickly see approximate yardages from any point to any point, but that idea fell apart. As printed material it can only be as current as of the most recent course data prior to printing, eg. if bunkers are added or moved on a hole since printing then those obviously aren't in your book. So, no, this is not a high-end competition-caliber yardage guide, but - definitely helpful for casual and recreational play .. eg. finding a yardage within a 5 or so yard tolerance is acceptable ... and definitely helpful for learning all the hole layouts and hazards on a new course. During on-course play you'd augment using this book with either a GPS device (I wear a GPS watch) or a laser. Examples of where the book has been helpful include... locating lines and safe shot distances off the tees, distances into doglegs, layup areas to play towards (and approx distances from where I might hit a good tee shot), safe vs trouble spots around the greens - especially on a few of the Par 3s, etc. There's also one hole in particular that was harder for me to figure out at first from on the ground - there's a large bunker crossing the width of the fairway at a diagonal, with the left side closer to the hole .. and a tree! ... the whole front edge of the bunker is level with the fairway and the back of it is a steep grass slope so you don't see the bunker itself/the sand at all .. so it's tough to see the distance to either side of the front edge or to clear the bunker from wherever you might be hitting your second shot - so the book's overivew of the hole layout helped me to find spots to try to play towards on either the front or back side of the bunker. Green Maps Possibly the more useful feature of the book, and can be really helpful if you play at a course with very sloped and contoured, or with subtle break, tricky greens. Yes - it may slow you down as you try to focus in on the section of the green and try to locate the break lines from your ball towards the hole, but .. as you start to learn where the breaks are on your course you won't need the book anymore and hopefully more of those first putts will be rolling closer to the hole! There are two maps - first is a Heat Map where the colored scale represents % Slope. As an AimPoint putter I've found this useful to help either confirm or adjust my own slope reading; if you don't use AimPoint it still clearly indicates the Highs and Lows, and flat spots, across the green. Note the green maps' heavier grid lines mark out 5-yard squares. Second is the Putt Break, in black and white, with smaller arrows closer together indicating at each point on the green which way the ball should roll. To best use this, though, you have to locate both your own and the flag's relative positions on the green on the Putt Break map and focus in on that section to clearly see the direction from you/the starting point going towards the cup. FYI... one way I've been using these maps are after a putt rolls off in an unexpected direction ... I'll look and try to see where I mis-read the break. Side Note: as I'm writing this there is discussion about a potential Rule change banning green reading maps from competitions, but I would venture a guess they'd still be allowed in practice rounds. Take It or Leave It? I take it with me every round, although it does spend more time now in the bag vs in my hand, but ... as mentioned above it has unquestionably been a useful aid the first several rounds at each of the three (9 hole) courses at my club. I wear a GPS watch when I play, so I'm not using the book so much to find exact yardages from Point A to Point B but more to locate where are the safe spots to play towards. The greens on these course have very few flat spots anywhere, and some very subtle breaks mixed in here and there, so the green reading maps are the more useful feature to me; plus, as mentioned earlier, I can confirm or adjust my own AimPoint read or review the indicated break in the book after mis-reading a putt. Overall? For me, worth it.
I'm sure this topic was already discussed. What apps have you found great to use for during your round for shot distances, approach shots, putting slopes, scorecard/handicap, etc.? I want to pick one and upgrade to have the full features this season. I had used 18birdies a little bit last year just to plan shots, keep my score and didn't upgrade, which that alone has been a great help and was an easy app to use. I was just looking at GolfLogix which looks like they have green slopes mapped out which is great for approach and putts which could help cut a few strokes having that knowledge, and I don't think 18birdies does that. GolfLogix looks a bit spammy though and has a lot of pop-up windows, and you have to upgrade to get rid of ads. Not sure if I'm a fan of that. Anybody upgrade GolfLogix? 18birdies? Any recommendations of other ones? What features have you used/appreciated? What benefits have you experienced? I imagine these apps have helped a lot of others out there cut some strokes down knowing distances better and help with reading putts. Thanks!