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Recent Navigation Tool Reviews

Garmin GPSMAP 62st

rated 3.5 of 5 stars Hand draw your route in Base Camp. My problem with Base Camp and all other back-country mapping software, is that you can't just put in the starting point and the end point and any waypoints in-between. You must manually hand draw on your computer the actual route you want to take as precise as possible, then transfer that route to your GPS. It won't just route itself on the trail, like a street GPS follows a street route. WHY NOT? This is 2016! Precision is required if you are wanting any kind… Full review

Casio PRG270

rated 4 of 5 stars Solar-powered altimeter, barometer and compass (ABC) watch with temperature sensor, world time, stopwatch, and timer. The Casio PRG270 Suunto and Garmin watches represent the gold standard in hikers’ watches and the Casio PRG270 will inevitably be compared to them. However, it should be kept in mind that the PRG270 is basically an altimeter, barometer and compass (ABC) watch, with the addition of a temperature sensor, world time, stopwatch and timer. It does not have GPS or advanced athletics… Full review

Brunton TruArc 15

rated 3 of 5 stars Not something I'll recommend. All the different tools and function that come with this are a good idea in theory but, when you put it together with chintzy plastic it doesn't matter how good of a cool idea you have. When you put it into play it can become a piece of trash really quick. And that is my experience with this compass.  They could have used some better lightweight material to snap things together. The center piece pushed out so easily and the plastic holding it in broke too. I couldn't… Full review

Garmin GPSMAP 62st

rated 4 of 5 stars Great unit, accurate, reliable and robust, but loses a star because of the BaseCamp software. This GPS can get a signal in many places where other GPS units fail. This unit is quite old, released in August 2010 (five years ago) but sold up until 2016. It has (just) been superseded by the new 64-series of models. It has been a long time since I have intensively used a GPS. I did engineering at Uni and did two years of Surveying. Back then GPS units were the size of suitcases. Almost 20 years ago… Full review

Brunton TruArc 5

rated 5 of 5 stars Great backup compass, With today's GPS, compass and maps are lost art. I use this as my backup, a just-in-case tool. But I find using it simple and reliable. I use it all the time. Precision artillery, NO. Finding my way home, YES! Full review

Garmin GPSMAP 62s

rated 5 of 5 stars This is my go-to handheld GPS. OK, so this GPS is awesome! I have loaded it up with SO much topo, like multiple states, and it still rocks. It's really easy to use as a basic GPS, which I normally use it for.  You can essentially turn it on and start walking. It gains its 3 satellites in a matter of minutes depending on your location. Not to be used in caves. But I can turn it on in my house and it magically has service.  The buttons on it are a little excessive.  The POWER button on the side… Full review

Garmin eTrex

rated 5 of 5 stars Great little GPS. This little GPS does what you need—it gets you there and back. I have had this eTrex since sometime in the early 2000s. The screens are basic and so is the operation of the unit. It can be used one-handed without any problems. I can plug in my coordinates and be gone before my son can using his phone app.   It's pretty well shock proof, water/dust proof and never fails to navigate me where I'm going. The battery life is amazing also. Besides backpacking I also geocache so I… Full review

Suunto MC-2

rated 2.5 of 5 stars Works great for me, I have heard of people having up to a 6 degree offset, which could be catastrophic. I wish it had a measuring device in more that just 1:24000, also the miles are NM but not labeled as such. I have used this a few times for bushwhacking locally, got me back to the trail. If you know how to use all the functions and have a good map this is an excellent beginner compass. The Rotating dial gets kind of rough if it gets dirty. However, it stays in place.  It is pretty easy to use,… Full review

Garmin GPS 64

rated 3 of 5 stars $150 on Costco.com! I've needed a GPS for a while after getting lost (because I didn't have a map — yeah I know — stupid). But planning some major adventures coming up and don't ever want to be without map and GPS. I like to know my progress and my map skills aren't 100% but I am pretty darn good. I'm not rich and was never willing to drop $200-$400+ on a GPS My girlfriend got me this one for Xmas on Costco.com for $150. I told her that was a steal since it goes for $250 and if I don't like… Full review

Top-Rated Navigation Tools

Sort by: name | rating | price | availability | recently reviewed

user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Silva Polaris 177 Compass
$17
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Silva Starter 1-2-3 Compass
$11 - $13
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Suunto M-3D Leader Compass Compass
$44
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Brunton TruArc 5 Compass
$20
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
ACR ResQLink Locator Beacon
$325
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
DeLorme Pennsylvania Atlas & Gazetteer US Northeast Paper Map
$20
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Great Swamp Press Pachaug State Forest Trail Map - Connecticut US Northeast Paper Map
$10
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Suunto Ambit3 Peak Sapphire
$500 - $650
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
ACR ResQLink+ Locator Beacon
$280 - $289
user rating: 5 of 5 (3)
Garmin Fenix GPS Receiver
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Imus Geographics Wallowa Mountain/Eagle Cap Wilderness Map US Pacific States Paper Map
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Suunto Ambit
$550 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
CritterMap Backcountry Navigator for Android Map / Outdoor App
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Garmin Oregon 450t GPS Receiver
$400 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Magellan SporTrak Map GPS Receiver
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
McMurdo Fast Find 210 Locator Beacon
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Magellan eXplorist XL GPS Receiver
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Suunto M-2 Compass
$24 MSRP
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Recta Elite Sport Global Compass Compass
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Silva Explorer Pro HV Compass
$30 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin Rino 530HCx GPS Receiver
$500 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin GPSMAP 62s GPS Receiver
$450 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Carin Mountain Company Mount Rainier Guide Reference Map US Pacific States Paper Map
$14 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Victorinox Swiss Army Summit XLT
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
DeLorme Earthmate PN-60w GPS Receiver
$350 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Silva Lensatic 360 Compass
$19 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Magellan Triton 1500 GPS Receiver
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin Oregon 450 GPS Receiver
$330 MSRP
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Magellan CrossoverGPS GPS Receiver
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Gaia GPS App & Offline Topo Maps Outdoor App / Map
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
DeLorme MapPack Annual Subscription Map
$30 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Polar RCX5 Sports Watch
$350 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Suunto M-3 Global Compass
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Kasper & Richter Meridian Pro Compass
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin Oregon 550 GPS Receiver
$400 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Menasha Ridge Press The Best in Tent Camping: Illinois
$16 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin Forerunner 305 GPS Receiver
$200 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Casio Pathfinder PAW1500-1V Altimeter
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Gem Trek Trail Map and Guide Canadian Paper Map
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Wilderness Press San Gabriel Mountains Map US Mountain States Paper Map
$10 MSRP
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Brunton O.S.S. 40B Compass Compass
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin GPSMAP 60CS GPS Receiver
user rating: 5 of 5 (4)
Garmin eTrex Legend Cx GPS Receiver
discontinued
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Garmin GPSMAP 60Cx GPS Receiver
discontinued
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Garmin GPSMAP 76S GPS Receiver
discontinued
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Highgear Altis TI Altimeter
discontinued
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Brunton 54LU Compass
discontinued
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Silva Expedition 4 Compass
discontinued
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Garmin 72 WAAS GPS Receiver
discontinued
 
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Suunto M-5 Compass
discontinued
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