After intense research and testing of different smartwatches, the Garmin Epix, Topo stands as the best outdoor smartwatch. The reason is that it has a sturdy built that can withstand rough terrain.
Users can also swim with this smartwatch as it has water-resistant of 50 meters. Furthermore, it lasts longer than most smartwatches as it’s made of durable materials.
Finally, it comes with many great features that will help outdoor enthusiasts; these include GPS, Glonass, expanded internal memory, activities analysis, barometer, and altimeter.
- Best Outdoor Smartwatch
- Garmin Fenix 5 Plus
- Casio G-SHOCK RANGEMAN – Best Outdoor Smartwatch for Construction Workers
- Suunto Traverse Alpha – Best Outdoor Smartwatch for Military
- Suunto Core Altimeter Watch All Black
- Garmin Epix, TOPO – Best Outdoor Smartwatch for Hiking and Swimming
- Apple Watch Series 4
- What Makes a Good Smartwatch for Outdoors?
Best Outdoor Smartwatch
An outdoor smartwatch serves as an ideal item for hikers, swimmers, construction workers, and camping. These smartwatches can withstand extreme conditions and wet terrain. They even guide users through areas without Google Map access.
Although outdoor watches are rugged, it’s best to purchase a model that looks classy. It should also offer accurate readings because these are essential for various outdoor activities such as camping and hiking.
However, with our list of the best outdoor smartwatch, you’ll surely find one that will suit your needs.
Garmin Fenix 5 Plus
The Garmin Fenix 5 Plus comes with enough features and high performance which makes it stand out as a great contender in our list. It also has a classy look which makes that can complement one’s outfit.
Triple Navigation System
The Fenix 5 Plus supports GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo which helps during travel on rough terrain. With these features, it’s virtually impossible for the user to become lost at any location. It also allows easy discovery of exciting places such as cafes, stores, and campsites.
This smartwatch comes in various options with bezels made from either stainless steel or titanium. It also has a display face covered with thick glass or sapphire lens with a bracelet of silicone, leather, or stainless steel. With these materials, the Fenix 5 can withstand wear and tear common with outdoor activities.
With a 10 ATM rating, this adds more to its durability. For this reason, this Garmin Fenix can withstand hours of rain and swimming.
Long Battery Life
When in Ultra Tac mode, the Fenix 5 offers a battery life of 42 hours. This impressive feature especially when there is no access to a power source during your trip.
Opinion and Drawback
The Garmin Fenix 5 Plus is a great smartwatch however it has some issues. First, it does not sync smoothly with iPhones. It also does not allow users to customize the activity screen or even back it up online.
Casio G-SHOCK RANGEMAN – Best Outdoor Smartwatch for Construction Workers
The Casio G-shock Rangeman can withstand harsh conditions while providing valuable information on the go. Unlike most smartwatches in the market, it does not feature a touch screen.
The Casio Rangeman supports solar charging which comes in handy especially in remote areas. A single full charge offers 33 hours of battery life even if the GPS is activated. Also if the battery level drops, it can be recovered through solar charging.
The strap on this Casio G-shock is ideal for any outdoor activity. It has a sturdy built strap made of resin and it can stay comfortable on the wrist. Also, the resin strap will last longer since it does not crack like leather or rubber.
The product displays your current location after collecting data from satellites. Users can also use this data to create routes via a G-SHOCK app.
It has a crisp and straightforward display, and you easily can read the information from any angle. The Casio Rangeman also offers details about longitude, latitude, temperature, and altitude.
When the watch is connected via Bluetooth, it syncs with either internet time servers or GPS signals. This provides accurate data that is needed to plan your hiking trips.
Opinion and Drawbacks
Users might find this product pretty bulky on the wrist. It also has weak alarm and notifications features as it does not support vibrating alerts.
Suunto Traverse Alpha – Best Outdoor Smartwatch for Military
The Sunnto Traverse Alpha stands as a trendy and rugged smartwatch that can withstand tough terrains and elements. It also comes with features that will help outdoor enthusiasts when hiking, camping, and carrying out other outdoor activities.
A rugged stainless steel case houses the inner workings of the Suunto Traverse Alpha. It also has a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal glass and a nylon bracelet. With these materials, the Traverse Alpha can endure long periods of use during outdoor activities.
The watch face offers wearers the option to use either a 12-hour clock or a 24-hour military watch. In basic mode, the Traverse Alpha shows the date at the top, the time at the center with a sunrise/sunset counter at the bottom. Campers, hunters and hikers will find the counter appealing as it indicates the best time to set up camp.
The Traverse Alpha is available in two wristband options the nylon textile and silicone. Although these materials might not be popular with some users, they can withstand wear and tear than leather or steel. However, the silicone option handles water better.
Opinion and Drawbacks
As Suunto designs a watch for the military, it’s no surprise that the Traverse Alpha also has more features for outdoor use. However, it does not change time zones automatically while its GPS activation is slow. The Suunto Traverse Alpha barometer readings are inaccurate because the sensors touch one’s skin. The synthetic bracelet could also feel itchy on your skin.
Suunto Core Altimeter Watch All Black
Another great product from the finest brand, this Suunto Core Altimeter offers more features than regular smartwatches. First, it combines elegance with the traditional ruggedness associated with Suunto watches.
It features a barometer that offers a Storm Alarm. This option can notify users of approaching storms after sensing a drop in air pressure. On a hiking trip, this feature helps the wearer to locate a good camping site or find shelter before a storm begins.
With the altimeter, you can record distances climbed or descended. It even measures elevations as high as 30000 ft. This option helps to track the exact location on a topographical map.
The Suunto watch has a compass mode that converts the timepiece into a digital compass. It also allows users to set and lock the compass on a specific route.
Unlike most outdoor watches, the Suunto Core Altimeter watch is not bulky or heavy on the wrist. This feature comes in handy as it won’t make your arms ache during climbs.
Opinion and Drawbacks
Although the Altimeter Watch has excellent features, it has a few downsides. Its dials get stuck after some time thereby requiring manual pulling. Sometimes it offers a poor display, unreliable readings. Another downturn is its battery life; it does not last long even after a full charge.
Garmin Epix, TOPO – Best Outdoor Smartwatch for Hiking and Swimming
This product stands as the first Garmin timepiece to include GPS and sport watch features. Although it has a bulky look, it stands as a good fit for camping, hiking trip, and other outdoors activities
Complete with its rugged look, the Garmin Epix GPS watch is made with materials that can endure years of rough use. First, the watch is protected by a scratch-resistant crystal lens. Secondly, it has a body covered with a PVD coating. Finally, its case can withstand water damage at 50m thus making the watch an excellent fit for swimming.
Unlike most smartwatches, the Epix Smartwatch offers notifications from a connected smartphone. These notifications are followed by vibrating alerts that notify when there is a call or message.
The Garmin Epix GPS comes with an app-the Garmin Connect. With the app, you can view your heart rate, steps covered and calories burned. It even lets you share your activity log on social media. To access this app, you should connect your phone to the watch via Bluetooth or USB.
The Gamin Epix features a 1.4-inch screen that is easy to use or navigate. Using this screen under bright sunlight is ideal since it offers 205 × 148 pixels. The display is also a visible color chroma that allows easy reading of the screen under low light.
Opinion and Drawbacks
Since the Garmin Epix is bulky, its dials touch the back of the hand especially when you bend your wrist. It comes with low-quality software, and it sometimes offers inaccurate readings.
Apple Watch Series 4
Last on our list of the best outdoor smartwatch is the Apple Watch Series 4. Although this smartwatch includes features of a sports watch, it’s also an ideal accessory for outdoor tasks.
Since it can withstand water damage at 50m, users can use it in the rain or when swimming in a pool or open water. The watch can also count the strokes made during a swim. It also features a third app that will allow the user to monitor their swimming strokes.
The watch supports GPS which guides the user during treks. Apart from that, it features an altimeter that will allow mountain climbers to measure their height above sea level.
Opinion and Drawbacks
Looking at its price, the Apple Watch Series 4 is an excellent product to work with. However, its bands feel uncomfortable on the wrist. Also, the watch requires constant charging because the battery does not last long. Finally, it interferes with the frequency of some electronic devices such as pacemakers.
What Makes a Good Smartwatch for Outdoors?
There are many important features to consider in a smartwatch for the outdoors. First, if you love to engage in activities like hiking and camping; it’s best to consider a smartwatch with GPS and GLONASS. These features will help keep track of your exact location. For Mountain climbers, it’s best to get an outdoor smartwatch that allows you to measure your altitude, receive messages, calls, and other notifications.
Other important features for outdoors include Barometer, altimeter, and compass as this updates you on incoming storms and prevailing weather.
It’s certain that at some point that outdoor enthusiasts might carry out activities in wet terrain. Hence, there is a need to get a smartwatch that can withstand this problem. For this reason, this makes water resistance stands as a great factor to consider when buying outdoor smartwatches. This feature offers the watch more protection and makes it last longer when used in wet conditions including rain.
Since nobody wants a watch that will last for a short period, therefore the sturdiness and strength of the watch are essential. For a smartwatch to last longer, it has to be made of high-quality materials that can withstand tough site conditions, falls, and element impact.
Our Final Word for the Best Outdoor Smartwatch
Finally, we’ve provided great insight into outdoor smartwatches and some of the most durable models. However, it’s best to know your needs before buying one.
At outdoors, there are rough times whereby the environment and weather conditions could become pretty harsh that one of our recommended best outdoor smartwatches can come in handy.
But before you make your final decision, it’s best to choose according to your specific needs, the style that’s will fit your regular outfit. Also, consider your budget and the features that will help you more in your preferred outdoor activities.