What is a Good GPS for Hiking

What is a Good GPS for Hiking

From experienced explorers to weekend fighters, there are many benefits of utilizing a personal GPS gear. A handheld GPS combines the traditional benefits, of hiking with a compass, with the dynamic features of smartphones.

Understanding what a good GPS for hiking is gives backpackers, hikers, and other backcountry fanatics the chance to plan and rerun their hiking experiences, in real time.

A GPS device is a multifaceted piece of technology, and understanding its specifications and features can be confusing. So, how do you determine what is the best GPS model for you?

What is a Good GPS for Hiking: Things to consider

Touchscreen or Buttons

Touchscreens function faster, since you don’t have to scroll through different options. The problem is that they consume more power than buttoned GPS units.

They can solidify in cold environments, and don’t function well with thick hand gloves.

On the other hand, buttoned types last longer, work in every temperature, can be utilized with thick hand gloves and are more dependable. The downside is that the buttoned type GPS devices are slower to react than touchscreen models, and it takes a bit longer to encode in waypoints.

Monitor Display

Screen size is significant to clearly see and read the map. It’s easier to use touchscreen models with a large display. The obvious disadvantage to a larger screen is that these models are bulky and weigh more.

Weight of the Device

As with any other gear you have for hiking activities, being lightweight is vital. There are numerous compact models, but if display size is a concern, you might prefer to have a bigger one.

Battery Life

You wouldn’t want to be out in a foreign land or unknown mountains, only to discover your GPS device just died after just a few hours of trekking. At least 16 hours of battery life is suggested.

It’s a great plus if the GPS device can be used with rechargeable batteries, since you don’t have to carry an additional set of batteries with you. Some GPS models come with a double-battery system, which delivers you the choice of using traditional AA batteries or the rechargeable lithium-ion packet.

Built-In Memory

GPS devices are capable of storing data internally or on a memory card. This card is used to store data, routes, waypoints, and, in some units, even pictures, audio, and video. Additional memory permits receivers hold more information.


Due to the harsh weather you might experience while outside, the handheld GPS devices should be shockproof, waterproof, and sturdy.

Another great idea in selecting a GPS device for hiking is to make certain that it offers a 12-channel receiver system, in order for you to receive signals in rugged terrains. You may require an extended antenna if you’re hiking in regions that have huge amounts of tree cover.

GPS unit should also be able to stock as many waypoints as you require. It should also contain the bearing to your succeeding waypoint. This is typical in most GPS units and is very imperative to the hiker.

Advanced Features to Consider in Looking for the Best GPS Device

Built-In Camera

Some GPS devices come with an incorporated camera to capture memories and locations. Photos may also be geotagged, so you can view where on the map you took the image.

Wireless Sharing

Wirelessly share tracks, waypoints, geocaches, and routes with other compatible GPS devices without using bulky cables or cords.

Two-Way Radio

Some GPS devices have integrated radios that range up to 14 miles. The hiker can also get the latest forecast from the weather channel.

Easy Updates

It is likewise recommended that the hiker should be able to perform essential updates economically and very easily. This is vital to keep topography and terrains updated.


One of the most treasured gadgets every hiker must own is a GPS device for hiking. It aids hikers to stay on the track and avert getting lost.

When selecting the best GPS model, it is important that you buy a GPS unit that is dependable when it comes to data accuracy and hardware quality.

The degree of the features and functions are determined by the hiker. If you’re an advanced trekker that frequently goes into particularly remote zones, you perhaps need one of the most reliable models on the market.

For hikers who go in less remote zones, a simpler GPS device can do the job. A GPS device may be vital for those who are hiking by themselves, or in those regions where they can be simply turned around.

There are many vendors that offer GPS devices for hiking. You can check numerous discussions and customer reviews for some of the units to help make your final decision.

Understanding what is a good GPS for hiking offers hikers and backpackers the opportunity to prepare and review their hiking experiences. Find the ideal hiking GPS unit and begin your hiking journey now.

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