To a fanatic willing to fly across the ocean to play western Ireland's links and parkland courses, what's a little rain? Pack some Gore-Tex pants and a rain jacket. No problem. Until the third day.
Because then, after slogging through a cold, steady pour on 18 at Rosses Point, and leaning into 70 mile-per-hour wind s and driving drops out at the edge in Belmullet, your gear is waterlogged and so are you.
Good thing the man pouring pints at the Moynish House in Mulran y tells you about the pro shop at Westport Golf Club, tucked against the scenic shores of Clew Bay, that has some of the best deals on rain gear. So before tackling the wind-whipped links at Connemara, stop in and visit with club pro Alex Mealia. He's got rain suits from Cape Crest ($231), ProQuip ($250), and a great jacket by Walrus ($87.50) to keep you dry.
He counsels you away from brands that charge $400 for pants and jacket: ``The average guy couldn't afford that. That's a weekly wage."
Westport Golf Club, Carrowholly, Westport, County Mayo, Ireland. 011-353-98-28262 (or -27070). golfwestport.com .