Watches for hiking activities are complex devices, and picking the best one to choose in the back country can be difficult. When researching the best GPS hiking watches, you have to look for the product which has the characteristics that you’ll require, which makes it pretty simple to use, and with no of the great features, you don’t require.
Despite the fact that a smartwatch is a small and fairly fine computer, it should be strong enough to endure up to a hitting wilds conditions, all while checking around a bit fashionable.
Table of Content
- 1 Finding The Best GPS Watch for Hiking – The most important thing
- 2 Top 7 Best GPS Watches for Hiker in 2019
- 3 Conclusion
Finding The Best GPS Watch for Hiking – The most important thing
A watch for hiking needs to have features over and above that from a regular watch. The key features that all hiking watches need to have are a barometer, altimeter along with a compass.
The barometer identifies shifts in the environmental pressure and therefore lets you quickly anticipate the weather; if the environmental atmosphere is escalating, the weather will increase and reversely; when the environmental pressure is dropping, the weather will probably get worse (atmosphere, rain and so on.). An instant drop in environmental pressure usually shows bad weather rising.
Almost all watches mentioned in this review present the environmental pressure and its tendency information (how the environmental pressure has developed within the last hours). Moreover, they also have the ability to bad weather alert function that alerts you if the environmental pressure falls drastically.
An altimeter helps guide you to how high above sea point you might be and is determined by barometric pressure and also GPS information. A GPS altimeter is a lot more accurate than a barometric altimeter and does not need any kind of calibration. The altimeter function is beneficial for navigation – it’s quicker to discover where you are on a map when you know how high above the sea point you may be.
A compass displays the 4 primary directions along with bearing and is so important for navigation. Along with the compass function plus a right map, it is simple to do triangulation to find out your latest spot.
Several hiking watches are also provided with a temperature gauge which will come in practical on multiday tours. You are able to, for instance, evaluate the temperature outside of the tent so that you can properly layer your outfits before you decide to prepare for the trail again.
Nevertheless, you will need to remember that the temperature gauge will commonly evaluate temperature most precisely once the watch is not on your arm since your body heat usually can affect the calculations.
Hiking watches typically include strong cases and extremely sturdy straps. Several watches can also be provided with Sapphire glass lenses for greater resistance towards scratches. Nevertheless, watches having Sapphire glass may also be far more costly.
Several sophisticated hiking watches feature GPS (many features GLONASS too) and that is typically the perfect choice for routing and tracking. A GPS watch lets you immediately find the coordinates of your latest spot. On the other hand, GPS watches have a faster battery lifespan compared to watches with no Gps navigation. However, they are usually designed with rechargeable battery power. On a long time backpacking tour a sun battery charger allows you to charge your watch miles away from the society.
Heart Rate Monitor:
A lot of watches for hiking also present and report the heart rate. The most advanced watches include wrist-based heart monitor watches (visual heart monitor watches) while some need a chest strap transmitter (in some cases to be bought as a stand alone). The heart rate monitor attribute is useful on hiking tours because it lets you keep a stable speed during the entire hiking activities.
Top 7 Best GPS Watches for Hiker in 2019
Garmin Fenix 5 Hiking Watch
The Garmin Fenix 5 substituted the very well-known Garmin Fenix 3 in 2017. It’s generally a Smartwatch having a high-quality color screen that is made for tough outdoor situations. The watch is manufactured out of extremely sturdy components – the bezel is constructed from stainless-steel whilst the lens is constructed from Sapphire glass (exclusively on Sapphire versions). For that reason, the watch provides excellent scratch resistance and sturdiness. However, the style of the watch helps it become stylish enough to put on to business appointments.
This hiking watch comes with a 3 axis compass, altimeter, barometer along with temperature gauge. For additional precise heat range measurements, it is possible to hook it up to an additional temperature sensing unit (Garmin Tempe). The compass and altimeter are adjusted systematically via GPS.
Additional features, thanks to GPS include that the watch can automatedly set the time in accordance with where you are and obviously provides navigation along with tracking. You can transfer routes and destinations as well as the watch will give you the guidance. Activities can be stored and specific data regarding every activity can be found from the Garmin Connect app (personal computer or mobile devices).
The Fenix 5 has several physical fitness functions like V02 estimator, treatment advisor, race forecaster and so on. and it is ideal for some other activities like jogging, swimming as well as ski. The Connect IQ connection enables you to customize the watch using applications, widgets as well as special watch faces (for instance a weather conditions widget can be added on the watch to help you get the weather prediction straight on the watch).
The Fenix 5 may possibly be synced with a Smart phone (The application is accessible both for android and ios units) to display texts, notifications, e-mails and also other notices. An additional valuable feature could be that the watch can be combined with the Garmin Virb camera and therefore it is possible to regulate the camera straight from the watch.
Suunto Ambit 3
The Suunto Ambit 3 is actually one of the best watches for hikers since it delivers fantastic features and sturdiness. As compared to the other typical watches, this watches has a less advanced screen (matrix) and doesn’t feature GLONASS however is usually more affordable and a bit easy to utilize (it carries a quite user-friendly system).
The Ambit 3 features altimeter, barometer, temperature gauge, GPS, as well as a compass. It provides a fantastic GPS reception since it utilizes a high-functionality GPS antenna not to mention helps routing and tracking. This watch can be synced with Movescount (regarding analytics and organizing) and also can display actual-time GPS information (for example speed, distance, height gain and so on.).
The Ambit 3 is actually 1st Bluetooth-support watch by Suntoo. Hence, it can simply link up to any Mobile phone and display you any incoming and missed message or calls, and various notices from your cellphone as soon as you use the Suunto Movescount application (eligible for Android and iOS systems). There are also some other applications on the Suunto Movescount website platform plus you are able to make your own applications for the watch.
The Ambit 3 is one of the best watches for hiking and mountain climbing since it provides many hiking benefits. Nevertheless, the features explained here relate to only the Ambit 3 Peak that are developed specifically for hiking and mountain climbing. Several Ambit 3 Peak are designed with Sapphire glass.
Suunto Traverse GPS
The Suunto Traverse quickly grew to be extremely popular amongst hikers, mountain climbers as well as other outdoors people because of the appealing design and sophisticated features. The watch is intended for fun outdoors people (possibly not for athletes just like the Suunto Ambit 3) and therefore includes a less sporty however a lot more stylish design.
As compared to the Suunto Ambit 3, it does not have the capability to get connected to additional Bluetooth PODs and doesn’t offer the multisport setting, swimming mode as well as sophisticated training analytics. Nevertheless, the Suunto Traverse comes with many useful features including vibration notifications, step counter, flash light back-light along with GLONASS navigation – and all of these the Suunto Ambit 3 is lacking in.
Normally the watch offers fairly similar features to the Ambit 3 – it’s built with altimeter, barometer, temperature gauge as well as digital compass feature. Just like plenty of Suunto watches, the Traverse is easily linked to the Movescount application that displays the report on your exercises and enables you to import landmarks, GPX tracks and also to employ changes to the watch.
Because the watch comes with Bluetooth it’s also possible for synchronizing it with a Smart phone (both of those android and ios) and also control the watch configurations and files straight from there as well as get notices from your mobile phone.
The Suunto Traverse is definitely an incredible watch which doesn’t only provide a lot of helpful features but also is visually awesome and fashionable. The watch is offered with a silicon or textile band along with Sapphire glass.
If anything you love is experiencing precise maps at arm’s size, the Garmin Epix is exactly what you’ll need. As could be expected to come from the leading GPS unit provider, this watch arrives packed with a lot of maps and contains 8 Gigabytes of storage for saving more.
Garmin’s Connect application also enables you to download your entire trail statistics such as height information and calories expended to your pc. By integrating it with outer add-ons such as a heart monitor, this device will probably be your one-stop shop for work out data.
The drawback of this watch is that a lot of people have noted its application to be glitchy, that appears to result from it attempting to do too much (you will discover numerous of menus to navigate, too). However, if you’re tolerant and consider the features, then you’ll most likely be okay.
The Epix is most likely too big and heavy to be approved as being a stylish item of gear. So long as you’re ready to take care of the functionality concerns, it gives you a great feature plus some of the highest quality maps offered.
Epson ProSense 17 GPS
Epson is probably not a loved brand in relation to GPS watches and also fitness trackers. However, their ProSense series offers lots of the features that you outdoors people are interested in with no all of the maps as well as tracking application to mess it up.
The Prosense 17 performs a bit different as compared to many of the other GPS watches on our collection, since it sets with your smart phone to show a map of your work out, although sensors on the watch monitor such things as step count as well as speed.
This helps it to be a lot less complex than several outdoor watches – and a lot easier to get around. This watch’s primary problem is that the battery power just endures half a day during GPS mode, although this shouldn’t be very bothersome because it’s just on this mode throughout a work out.
It’s additionally fairly cool in style and not practically as simple as the FitBit, which means you most likely won’t use it for daily use. If you’re interested in among the best outdoor watches yet do not require all of the maps application that is included with several of the top GPS watches, this watch might be a wise decision for you.
Casio Pro Trek 3000
The Pro Trek can be a good alternative, great for people who need a watch that will do nothing more than keeping the time, yet don’t need a product with a lot of features that they can be confused. In this modern small watch, Casio managed to go with an altimeter, compass, as well as temperature gauge. Furthermore, the standard timekeeping capabilities are very precise (since it gets improvements from the U.S. Atomic Clock). It’s furthermore solar-powered, so there’s no reason to charge this. Even though you reside in a constantly cloudy atmosphere, it continues to charge for 7 months even without the direct sunlight.
The main downside to the Pro Trek is that Casio appears to get reduce costs with the slim plastic material band which is vulnerable to damage. What’s more, it doesn’t provide the best screen, so it’s possibly not a good choice for those who have poor vision. Several customers have mentioned that the watch starts over itself, most probably because it’s synced to an atomic watch and turns into a new reading once daily. However, this in some cases does not work properly and leads to a blank time reading, even though it can effortlessly be repaired by physically synchronizing.
In general, the Pro Tek is a nice watch for hikers who desire a no-nonsense gadget that shows them somewhat concerning exactly where they’re heading but without having the battery-depleting function of GPS.
Deciding on the best hiking watch for hikers can be challenging since the quantity of variations and products can be purchased. In the end, although, the perfect watch for you definitely is determined by what you need. If you’re searching for the best GPS hiking watch, one which offers superb tracking capability, you’ll most likely be most joyful with the Ambit3 by Suunto. It’s better than many of the GPS watches for hiking listed above, and the shorter battery lifespan, its most significant disadvantage, can simply be resolved by providing an outside battery and charging it during the night.
If you’re trying to find more of a workout tracking without having all of the maps application present in GPS watches, the Epson Prosense 17 will probably be your best option. It’s reasonably priced for the purpose, and integrating it using your smart phone transforms it into a impressive fitness monitor that can record your workout routines effortlessly.