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Wearing an outdoor smartwatch is a great idea when you go on an outdoor adventure for a weekend or longer. These have to be rugged and durable, able to withstand getting wet and dirty, while also being able to tell you where you are and where you need to go even when Google Maps cannot.
The best outdoor smartwatches are:
Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch
The Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch is made of durable materials with a steel or glass fiber polyamide bezel, mineral crystal or polyamide glass, glass fiber polyamide case, and silicone strap.
This smartwatch brings together a smartwatch, a barometric altimeter, and a convenient wrist heart rate monitor.
The smartwatch has 80 sports mode already pre-installed, allowing you to get more accurate activity tracking for almost every kind of action. If you are the adventurous type and like to go exploring new territories, then you would love the route navigation, digital compass, and the breadcrumb view.
The Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch has a water resistance rating of 10 ATM, making it suitable to be worn while swimming, sailing, snorkeling, or engaging in other water sports except for diving. It also has a touch display with a wide viewing angle that you can see even when you are outdoors. You can get the sunset/sunrise times as well as the storm alarm to ensure safety.
Battery life for the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch lasts up to 80 hours in power saving mode, and 10 hours in training mode. It can last 40 hours with the GPS on.
With a suggested retail price of $550, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch has price tags that start at $399.99 at Amazon.
Garmin Fenix 5 Plus
The Garmin Fenix 5 Plus has all the clock features you would expect from a smartwatch, plus it gives you the sunrise and sunset times, as well as GPS time synchronization and automation daylight savings time.
The Garmin Fenix 5 Plus includes several outdoor and recreation features. For example, it has recreation profiles for:
- Cross-country Skiing
- Mountain Biking
- Stand up paddle boarding
You can rely on three satellite navigation systems: GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo. You will appreciate the point-by-point navigation, the breadcrumb trail, and back to start features that allow you to explore new trails without worrying about getting lost. It also helps you discover places of interest nearby. Other outdoor features that are particularly helpful are the StormAlert, which measures barometric pressure to tell you if there is bad weather coming in. Check out the ClimbPro Ascent planner and the downloadable maps, too.
If you are more concerned about fitness, the Fenix 5 Plus also gives you a ton of data about your activities, such as the number of steps you have made, sleep monitoring, calories burned, floors climbed, distance traveled, intensity minutes, fitness age, and stress tracking. It also comes with its own built-in heart rate monitor that allows you to get more detailed information such as VO2 Max, recovery data, and training effects.
Another thing you would love about this smartwatch is its long battery life. Invoking the UltraTrac mode would give you more than 42 hours of battery juice. That is as good as being out for the entire weekend without needing to recharge.
The Fenix 5 Plus is waterproof at 10 ATM, which makes it suitable for snorkeling, water sports, swimming, and just about any water activity except scuba diving.
It lets you store up to 500 songs, so you can leave your phone behind if you just want to listen to some music while working out. Speaking of which, if you need to pay for something, you can use the Garmin Pay feature so you can also leave your wallet behind.
Lastly, you have a range of color and material options for this smartwatch. For instance, you can have silicone, titanium, or leather straps. Alternatively, you can have a stainless steel or titanium bezel and then choose between chemically strengthened glass and sapphire crystal lens. As for the colors, you have a choice from the classic white and black to bolder ones such as sea foam and solar flame orange. Depending on the strap material that you choose, prices for the Garmin Fenix 5 Plus range from $699.99 to $1,149.99.
If you are into seafaring or you spend time navigating the open seas, you might want to consider the Garmin Quatix 5 rather than the Garmin Fenix 5 Plus. The Quatix 5 is like the Fenix 5 Plus but allows you to get nautical and tide data. It can also help you know where to drop an anchor and how long your line should be. There is a fishing contest timer for those who love fishing competitively, and a tack assist feature for sail racers. The Quatix 5 costs less at $549.99.
The TomTom Adventurer has everything you need for an excellent outdoor adventure. It has a multi-sports mode that allows you to track different activities such as swimming, biking, hiking, running, skiing, trail running, snowboarding, and a lot others.
It can help you try out new trails and keep track of it. It can even plan your routes and help you find your way back if you get lost. Sensors on the TomTom Adventurer include gyro, accelerometer, barometer, optical heart rate, and compass.
When it comes to activity tracking, it also counts your steps and keeps track of the calories you burn all day. It also measures heart rate and sleep quality.
What’s more, you have enough space on your smartwatch for 3 GB worth of music. The TomTom Adventurer comes with a Bluetooth headphone that allows you to enjoy music with your outdoor explorations without having to bring your phone along.
Battery life will last up to 11 hours when the GPS is on, but if you are hiking, it will last for 24 hours. If you have the GPS and heart rate monitor turned on, and if you are listening to music on your TomTom Adventurer, you get only up to five hours with a single charge.
Unlike other models here, the TomTom Adventurer comes in only two colors: black and orange. It does, however, use durable materials that make it suitable for the rugged outdoors.
The more affordable TomTom Adventurer has a price tag of $262.88 on Amazon and only has a 5 ATM waterproof rating, which means that it is not suitable for water activities that could get it really wet or submerged in water. It is, however, resistant to splashes and you can wear it in the rain.
Casio GPRB1000-1 Rangeman
If you want a beautiful-looking watch that is also a trooper, then get the Casio GPRB1000-1 Rangeman. This smartwatch is shock-resistant, mud-resistant and water-resistant with a WR 200 meters or 20 ATM rating, making it less susceptible to weather conditions outside. It can also withstand the cold, surviving temperatures of -20 degrees Celsius.
It has a GPS, digital compass, barometer, and altimeter to help you navigate and survive the great outdoors.
The best draw of the Casio GPRB1000-1 is the ability to charge your batteries using solar power. This is a real bonus, even with the fact that the battery can last for 33 hours even when the GPS is turned on.
The Casio GPRB1000-1 Rangeman is priced at $800. This is more expensive, but it is expected considering that it is probably the toughest smartwatch available on the market today. Also, the solar charging makes sense with GPS being a notorious battery drainer.
The more significant drawback, however, is the lack of a touchscreen. The good news is that you would be able to control the watch easily using its buttons and crown. Unlike other Casio watches, this is surprisingly easier to learn.
Casio Pro Trek Smart WSD-F20
If you are an Android Wear user (or “Wear OS by Google” user, as the search giant prefers you to be called) and you like smartwatches that are on the bigger side, then the Casio Pro Trek Smart WSD-F20 would be best for your outdoor adventure.
One unique aspect of this smartwatch is that it is compatible with the Michibiki Japanese satellite navigation system. It has a 5-ATM water resistance rating of 5 ATM, and prices for this smartwatch starts at $399 to $500 on Amazon.
Why it did not make this list: The Casio Pro Trek Smart WSD-F20 can measure everything from altitude to air pressure. However, what really killed the Casio Pro Trek Smart WSD-F20 from being included in this list is its short battery life, which lasts only six to nine hours when the GPS is in use. You can expect battery life to last just a day when in regular use but with the color display on.
At $895, the Alpina AlpinerX is one of the most expensive smartwatches around. However, it is packed with a variety of sensors that make it very functional and useful. It gives you all the activity data, as well as the environmental data that you need. It also has a UV indicator.
Why it did not make this list: You might not like the small LCD screen that shows you all the data you need to see when you are outdoors. This is especially true if you compare it with most other smartwatches built for the outdoors, wherein the entire watch face is used for its display. With the AlpinerX, you have a hybrid that features a traditional watch with a tiny LCD screen for the data you want. It also does not have a built-in GPS. It is also still not available, although it is expected to come out later this year.
The Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch, Garmin Fenix 5 Plus, TomTom Adventurer, and Casio GPRB1000-1 Rangeman offer the same features when it comes to activity tracking and environmental data, therefore choosing which one is the ultimate best for you would boil down to personal preference.
If you need something that is friendlier to your bank account, get the TomTom Adventurer. If you need something that does an excellent job at keeping track of your daily activities, offers a variety of options regarding looks, and is a trooper when you go outdoors, get either the Garmin Fenix 5 Plus or the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch.
However, if you prefer the most rugged smartwatch today with the option to use the sun to recharge the battery, then get the Casio GPRB1000-1 Rangeman.
To make it easier for you to decide, here is a side-by-side comparison of the best outdoor smartwatches:
|Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro Watch||Garmin Fenix 5 Plus||TomTom Adventurer||Casio GPRB1000-1 Rangeman|
|Price||$399.99 (Check out the latest rates here!)||Starts at $699.99 (Check out the latest rates here!)||$262.88 (Check out the latest rates here!)||$800.00 (Check out the latest rates here!)|
|Battery life with GPS||40 hours||10 hours; 30 hours in power saving mode||11 hours; 24 hours in hiking mode||33 hours|
|Water resist rating||10 ATM||10 ATM||5 ATM||20 ATM|