Best High Bounce Wedges 2023

We run through some of the best wedges on the market with high bounce at the forefront of the design.

Best High Bounce Wedges
(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Best High Bounce Wedges

One of the most difficult areas of your golf game to master is the short game. This is where easy shots can be picked up on the course and is often why your wedges are known as your scoring clubs. And we all know how hard it is to be consistent around the greens. Some of the best wedges in the game (opens in new tab) are designed to be playable off all kinds of lies, but we all know that every now and then there is a chance that you might chunk a chip shot, hitting your club into the ground before bottoming out on the golf ball. If you're prone to doing that, that's where wedge bounce wedge can help you.

If you didn't already know, some of the most forgiving wedges (opens in new tab) in the game deliver a degree of bounce that will vary depending on what lie you want to use that club from. If we're talking technically, wedge bounce is the angle created between where the leading edge and the lowest point of the sole strikes the ground. The higher the degree of bounce, the higher the leading edge will be off the surface at address, meaning that there is less chance your clubface will drag in the ground when you bottom out. 

As a general rule, high bounce clubs are better for softer, fluffier lies, while lower bounce wedges are more appropriate for firmer lies, like compacted bunkers. And depending on your swing type (opens in new tab), you may want to think about what type of wedge is best for you! Thankfully, there are a ton of excellent options out there on some of the best wedges in the game that can deliver a range of lofts in their bounce. We've highlighted below some of the best wedges for high bounce, but while you're here, why not also check out our guides to the best pitching wedges (opens in new tab), best gap wedges (opens in new tab) and best lob wedges (opens in new tab). As it's also nearly Christmas, check out some of our best Christmas golf gifts (opens in new tab), which features a ton of great gift ideas for that golf obsessed relative in your family!

Best High Bounce Wedges

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Titleist Vokey SM9 wedge in three finishesEditors Choice 2022

(Image credit: Future)
Our pick

Specifications

Lofts: 46°-62°
Grinds: 6 (F, S, M, K, L, D)
Finishes: 4 (Tour Chrome, Brushed Steel, Jet Black, Raw)

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible trajectory control
+
Unrivalled looks
+
Loads of bounce and grind options

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited gains over SM8

Titleist Vokey wedges continue to stand out from the crowd when it comes to the best golf wedges on the market. The SM9 is a case of evolution rather than revolution from the SM8 but Titleist says it has developed the groundbreaking Progressive Centre of Gravity (CG) design to improve distance and trajectory control. In testing, we found it very easy to square-up on full shots and deliver excellent consistency of spin and flight from closer to the green.

Back again are Titleist’s six grind options - F, S, M, K, L and D - making the Vokey SM9 range highly versatile for every golfer and their unique swing. In total, there are 23 different loft and bounce options and we took advantage of that in our custom fitting to optimize our wedge set-up for improved performance. 

A new spin milled cutting process means grooves are sharper, while each groove is specifically cut based on loft and finish. Titleist (opens in new tab) also inspects every single groove on every wedge to guarantee conformity. As of right now, the SM9 is set to be available in four finishes - Tour Chrome, Brushed Steel, Jet Black and Tour Raw - but it remains to be seen whether the eye-catching Slate Blue will make a return in 2022. 

Cleveland CBX ZipCore wedgeEditors Choice 2022

(Image credit: Future)
A superb performing wedge that offers plenty of forgiveness

Specifications

Loft: 44°-60°
Grind: 3 - (V, S and C)
Finishes: 1 (Chrome)

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent feel on all shots
+
Lots of spin on offer
+
Really forgiving

Reasons to avoid

-
Sound is a bit clicky
-
Not the best-looking from the back

Cleveland has added another model to its impressive wedge line-up, with the CBX ZipCore (opens in new tab) wedge providing superb forgiveness thanks to a cavity/muscle back design. 

Although it may not look the best wedge from the back, all forgotten when standing over the ball at address as the classic teardrop shape and chrome finish inspire bags of confidence. Another positive, from a visual standpoint, is the all-black Catalyst Spinner graphite shaft.

Aesthetically pleasing at set-up, it also performs superbly, with the ZipCore extremely easy to hit and surprisingly easy to flight, something that’s likely a consequence of the low density ZipCore that sits at the heart of this wedge to shift the centre of gravity and raise the MOI for maximum forgiveness. Because of the performance it has earned a place in our 2022 Editor's Choice Awards (opens in new tab).

Ping Glide 4.0 WedgeEditors Choice 2022

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)
Best for spin

Specifications

Lofts: 46°-60°
Grinds: 4 (SS, WS, TS, Eye2)
Finishes: 1 (Chrome)

Reasons to buy

+
Unrivalled spin
+
Excellent grind options
+
Looks great over the ball

Reasons to avoid

-
Feel takes a while to get used to

The Ping Glide 4.0 wedge looks exceptional - especially in the more traditional teardrop shape that is available in three of the four sole options. It also has the classic Ping Hydropearl 2.0 chrome finish, which reduces glare as well as flyers from the rough in damp conditions while also adding a touch of style to the aesthetics. 

There are four sole options to choose from - WS, SS, TS and Eye2 - which we took advantage of. The versatile SS (standard sole) offers relief for golfers with a moderate angle of attack and looks a little smaller than the prior version on the Glide 3.0. 

But the WS (wide sole) is where we enjoyed the most success. Turf interaction was exceptional on short shots, making it one of the best wedges for chipping we've ever tested. Finally, unique to Ping’s line-up is the Eye2 sole, which is available in lofts from 54°-60° and is described as the ultimate bunker club - a theory we put to the test. It is undoubtedly one of the best sand wedges on the market due to its forgiveness from various lies and distances.

Most impressive, however, was how easy it was to spin the golf ball. Even when hitting shots that came off a little hotter and lower than expected, the ball sat to attention quicker than most new wedges. This could well have been down to the new Emery face blast, which adds a little more friction to the hitting surface.

Mizuno T22 wedges in three finishes

Versatile finishes

Specifications

Lofts: 46°-60°
Grinds: 4 (S, D, X, C)
Finishes: 3 (Chrome, Raw, Denim Copper)

Reasons to buy

+
Super spin control
+
Wide range of finishes available

Reasons to avoid

-
Raw finishes scuffs up quickly

One of the best golf clubs (opens in new tab) in the wedge sector is the T22 from Mizuno. The three finishes feature a microlayer of copper beneath the nickel chrome, just like on the MP20 irons, to improve the feel at impact.

They feature a slightly more compact, ‘modified teardrop,’ profile with an extensively bevelled top edge to make it appear thinner. The spin weighted blade design, created by tapering the upper portion of the blade, helps create more consistent spin and a more penetrating trajectory.

Mizuno’s HydroFlow Micro Grooves deliver great wet weather performance as they’re laser etched to release moisture and reduce spin drop off, while the Quad Cut milled, and loft specific, grooves are cut into Boron infused steel to offer a longer effective lifespan.

Three finishes are available - Denim Copper, Satin Chrome and Raw. The Raw finish comes without the copper underlay, but it will rust over time for a look requested by many of the Mizuno tour players.

PXG Sugar Daddy II wedges in two finishes

(Image credit: Future)
Most forgiving

Specifications

Lofts: 50°-62°
Grinds: 2 (C, BP)
Finishes: 2 (Chrome, Xtreme Dark)

Reasons to buy

+
Extremely forgiving
+
Unique levels of adjustability 
+
Well balanced
+
Extra bounce and grind option for 2022

Reasons to avoid

-
High-toe design won't suit some

The visuals of this wedge are striking thanks to a weight that's been added at the back of the head as well as the introduction of full-face grooves and a high-toe design. Believe it or not, all that was done after PXG received feedback from its tour staff. 

One of the first things we noticed was the balance on offer. It's incredible and makes playing all lengths of shot easy. In addition, there is a new bounce and grind option for 2022, meaning golfers have more options to tailor the set-up to their unique delivery and turf conditions. For us, that meant switching into the higher 13-degree bounce model.

Although the high-toe design wasn't to our liking aesthetically, it worked to make this one of the most forgiving wedges we've ever tested. When pitching and hitting full shots, controlling the flight was more simple than usual, while the spin was comparable to anything on the market. It also comes in two finishes: chrome and Xtreme dark, which is a really nice addition.

TaylorMade Hi-Toe 3 Wedge

(Image credit: Future)

Specifications

Loft: 50° to 60°
Grind: 3 (Standard, Low, High)
Finishes: 1 (Aged copper)

Reasons to buy

+
High level of spin control
+
Incredible looks from every angle
+
Ample versatility from the four-way cambered sole

Reasons to avoid

-
Only one bounce option available in the low and mid lofts

This brilliantly balanced wedge offers excellent control around the greens for those who struggle with distance from the sand. The Hi-Toe 3 wedge from TaylorMade has a very low centre of gravity and a wide back that provides extra forgiveness and bounce on much shorter shots. This is the third generation of the Hi-Toe design and we found it performs brilliantly on the course. Aesthetically, this wedge looks incredible, with its aged copper finish giving a rustic, yet sophisticated look. 

Akin to many of the best wedges for chipping (opens in new tab), this club excels when it comes to adding spin to the golf ball. We think that is partly due to the micro-ribs added to the face of the club that give extra traction between the grooves, giving the face of the club additional friction. And you can really feel this work when you strike low, spinny chips onto the greens. 

In the sand wedge editions of this club, you'll also find the Hi-Toe comes with full-face grooves, that give extra forgiveness on off-center strikes. The only drawback we can think of is that it won't suit players who tend to get a steep in their downswing, but that being said, it is a great wedge for golfers of all abilities. Plus you also get a lot of high-bounce forgiveness, meaning it is fantastic for digging shots out of deep lying bunkers and heavy rough. It is also a fantastic lob wedge (opens in new tab) for any player looking for greater stopping power around the greens. 

Callaway Jaws Raw Wedge

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Specifications

Lofts: 48°-60°
Grinds: 4 (X, Z, S, W)
Finishes: 2 (Chrome, Black)

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible levels of spin
+
Inspiring looks
+
Easy to flight

Reasons to avoid

-
Feel off the face quite firm
-
Swing weight a little light

Designed by Roger Cleveland and said to feature the deepest, most aggressive grooves in golf, Callaway have added the Jaws Raw wedge to its well-renowned family of golf wedges. We tested this club out at Royal Troon and it's safe to say we weren't disappointed with the latest offering. Looks-wise, it features the same shape and visuals as we've come to expect from the Jaws range. It is well designed and features a subtle weight system that helps players bounce the club off the turf.

We were really impressed with the spin on offer from the club's micro-grooves and Raw face. Spin on shorter chips was impressive and the control this wedge offered over a variety of different shots is what stood out most about this club. We also found it very easy to get underneath the ball thanks to the Callaway's Z Grind sole that has been designed to skid along the turf rather than dig into it. On firm ground, that makes the Raw Jaws a very handy club to have in your bag. It is a fantastic club for any player looking to generate greater stopping power around the greens.

macgregor v foil wide sole sand wedge

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Specifications

Lofts: 66º
Grinds: 1
Finishes: 1 (Steel)

Reasons to buy

+
Helps to reduce fat and thin chips
+
Promotes straighter shots
+
Confidence-inducing

Reasons to avoid

-
Right hand only

This Wide Sole, 66º model from MacGregor is one of the most forgiving wedges (opens in new tab) on the market. The wide sole is designed to reduce miss-hits, by eradicating thin and fat shots, helping players to strike the ball off the center of the clubface. It also makes it harder for the club to dig into the turf; instead, causing the club to glide over the ground and scoop the ball into the air.

We found it was very adept from bunker shots but really came into its own when we were faced with shots we would normally use a lob wedge for. The loft of the MacGregor V Foil Wide Sole Sand Wedge is higher than a standard lob wedge, and it proved great at tackling shots such as the chip over a bunker to a narrow strip of green.

How we test

When it comes to sand wedges, we conduct a very rigorous testing process. Whether we are sent a product or buy it ourselves, we put everything we review through its paces to ensure we can provide reliable feedback and advice on how each wedge performs. Every member of the Golf Monthly team is an avid golfer and knows what does and does not make for a good sand wedge. 

When testing wedges, we play with the clubs during multiple rounds and also use them in practice to assess how each club perform. If a wedge has a particular characteristic or if it claims to be the ultimate bunker club, we'll put that theory to the test and use that club across a variety of different lies. 

Specifically, when reviewing sand wedges, we assess a number of different factors on the club. For example, we will look at how forgiving that wedge is, how easy it is to generate spin with that club, how the club feels, how much control the wedge provides and the overall aesthetics of the club. For more information on how Golf Monthly tests products, take a look at our methodology here (opens in new tab). Wedge testing is headed up by Golf Monthly Staff Writer Andrew Wright (opens in new tab) who is currently using a set of Titleist Vokey SM9 wedges.  

What you need to consider when buying wedges

Wedges are one of the most technical clubs in the game. And when buying a new wedge, there are a ton of things you need to consider (opens in new tab). We've put together a brief list of points below that will fill you in on the key points to remember when buying your next wedge.

1. Gapping

Measure your current wedge yardages and how often you are in between clubs to help decide if you need to carry extra options. This is an important part of your bag setup to get right across the entire bag too, because knowing your gaps can allow you to fill out your bag correctly whether that be carrying two, three, or four wedges, which can then impact how many clubs you can carry at the top of the bag. The opposite is true as well. We have also created a guide on the best gap wedges (opens in new tab) as well so check that out for more information.

2. Bounce

Low bounce wedges are more suited to hard fairways and tight lies, while high bounce wedges are better for softer ground conditions and bunkers. The most bounce you will ever see on a wedge is about 18°, but it can be as low as 2°. The type of bounce you opt for should largely depend on things like your normal angle of attack, the firmness of your fairways and the type of shots you like to hit around the greens. Sometimes it may be best to have a range of wedges with different bounce degrees in your bag. For example, I'd go for a lob wedge with a lot of bounce to help me keep the clubface out of the ground and get the ball up in the air. You may then perhaps opt for a lower bounce pitching wedge to help dig the ball out of tougher lies!

3. Finish

Options like black PVD and copper are becoming increasingly common. The difference is mainly cosmetic, but dark finishes can help reduce glare. Alternatively there are classic chrome and silver designs as you can see above so it is a case of picking a design you like the look of not just at address, but in the bag as well.

4. Grooves

While grooves are now tightly regulated, it is still well worth keeping up to date with the latest designs, which use new milling processes and groove shapes to help move water and dirt away from the ball at impact to create extra spin and improve control. Additionally there are several brands that have brought out wedges with grooves that stretch across the entire face. Admittedly this does take a little bit of time to get used to, but for those players who may struggle with strike, a full faced wedge might do you some favors when creating spin towards the toe. 

5. Forgiveness

Forgiveness is one of the most important things to consider when purchasing a new set of wedges. Many golfers struggle with consistency around the greens and often find themselves chunking chip shots on a regular basis. That can often be eliminated by playing with a wedge that delivers a decent rate of forgiveness. That comes largely back to the weighting of the club and where the centre of gravity sits on the back of the club head. The lower and further back it is, the better chance you have of making a decent connection on the ball and lofting it up into the air - reducing the chance of hitting it fat. Check out our guide on some of the most forgiving wedges (opens in new tab) for more details! 

For more advice on what wedges to buy, check out our guides on the best wedges for chipping (opens in new tab), best sand wedges (opens in new tab) and best golf wedges for beginners (opens in new tab).

FAQs

Are high bounce wedges better?

That depends on your swing and the lie you're playing from. Yes, high bounce wedges tend to perform better on fluffier lies and can add more spin and height to your wedge game. But low bounce wedges can also be effective on tighter lies and in areas where you may need to dig the ball out of firmer ground. 

Are high bounce wedges more forgiving?

Yes, high bounce wedges tend to be the most forgiving. That is because of the way the club head is designed to ensure the club face stays clear of the ground as much as possible. The loft angle on the club means that its toe will bounce clear of the turf and stay clear to strike the ball, allowing players to hit cleaner, fuller chips.  

Who should use high bounce wedges?

High bounce wedges are better suited to players who take a lot of divots in their swing and have a steep angle of attack on the ball. A steep angle of attack can sometimes drive the club face down into the turf, meaning you're more likely to hit the ball fat - but a high bounce wedge combats this by preventing the club face from dragging in the ground. 

Andrew Wright
Staff Writer

A lifelong golf fan, Andy graduated in 2019 with a degree in Sports Journalism and got his first role in the industry as the Instruction Editor for National Club Golfer. From there, he went on to enjoy a spell freelancing for Stats Perform producing football reports, and then for RacingNews365 covering Formula 1. However, he couldn't turn down the opportunity to get back into the sport he grew up watching and playing and now covers a mixture of equipment, instruction and news for Golf Monthly's website and print title.


Andy took up the game at the age of seven and even harboured ambitions of a career in the professional ranks for a spell. That didn’t pan out, but he still enjoys his weekend golf at Royal Troon and holds a scratch handicap. As a side note, he's made five holes-in-one and could quite possibly be Retief Goosen’s biggest fan.


As well as the above, some of Andy's work has featured on websites such as goal.com, dailyrecord.co.uk, and theopen.com.


What's in Andy's bag?

Driver: Callaway Mavrik Sub-Zero (9°)

3-wood: TaylorMade M1 (15°)

Driving iron: Titleist U500 (17°)

Irons: Callaway Apex Pro '19 (4-PW)

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM9 (50°, 54° and 58°)

Putter: Titleist Scotty Cameron Newport 2.5

Ball: Titleist Pro V1