Garmin Forerunner 305
I had given up on finding a wrist-mounted, relatively…
Price Paid: $230
I had given up on finding a wrist-mounted, relatively accurate GPS for trail running after a pair of less-than-stellar experiences with Suunto products, first an x9i and then an x10 sent to replace it (see my other review on the x10).
The Garmin Forerunner 305 is exactly what I needed and the performance was outstanding. I can now get my heartrate information and navigational assessment needs all in one easy-to-use package. The customizable display is particularly useful as I can set it up to show up to three data fields simultaneously.
The unit's performance is where the 305 really shines, though. The 305 gets a fix within a couple of minutes (versus 25+ for the x9i and 10+ for the x10). It even gets a fix in very overcast conditions (I've had mine fix successfully during a thunderstorm) and I've never lost the signal, even in the densest treeline.
The accompanying software package, Garmin Training Center, is geared toward the athlete rather than the outdoor enthusiast, but the Runner features would work well for hikers, recording distance, elevation gain, slope grade, etc. I never go for a run without my 305 now, to include street running when I can't hit the trails.
While not as accurate as my Garmin GPSMAP60csx, it's a lot light and easier to use on the go. The large display was another great feature, as I can see the display without having to wear my bifocals.