Avoid getting lost with a hiking GPS which is easy to do in the wilderness. A hiking GPS (Global Positioning System) has advantages over the traditional compass or watching the direction of the sun although I still use both.
If you are not on a signed trail route bush whacking with dense forest or there are plenty of connecting paths then you really need a GPS for your hike. I would consider this a safety issue because getting lost is no fun. For some hikers another reason for a hiking GPS is the stats if can provide regarding elevation changes, distance covered and other neat information.
It is still a good idea to carry a trail map and/or compass as a backup and to have an sense of direction of where you are going. Do not use the same GPS you use in your car as it will not have the features you require.
Look for a hiking GPS that is:
Durable – when hiking your GPS is going to get knocked around so it needs to be shockproof and of a rugged construction. It also helps if your watch GPS or handheld GPS for hiking is lightweight, compact and waterproof as well.
Map Screen – you want to be able to easily read your hiking GPS in direct sunlight and other light conditions so make sure your model addresses this.
Hiking routes – whether walking in the open or in the deep woods you want your GPS to be able to pick up the satellite. Your hiking GPS really is a satellite receiver with signals from approximately 8 or 10 satellites providing you your location on a map display.
Your GPS needs to be able to provide a bearing to the next waypoint and have the ability to store hiking routes. Some models such as the Garmin Dakota Hiking GPS store up to 1,000 waypoints and up to 50 routes. I like the some models beep to remind you when you have arrived at the next turn if you have loaded the route in advance.
Maps – topographic type maps indicating the contours or the terrain and any lakes or rivers need to be uploaded quickly with a high speed USB connection from your computer. This is normal with hiking GPS.
Batteries – is the battery life long lasting? The best use common AA size that are easy to replace at a inexpensive price. Of course you will carry a spare set with you during the hike. Some people feel that the GPS with two batteries last longer than those with four.
Easy to use – when you receive your brand new hiking GPS you want to be up and running quickly. There are types that offer touch screens to make usage even easier.
These are some of the basic things you are looking for although some models include a built in camera. Click here for other hiking gear.
Your hiking GPS will give you the confidence to go hiking anywhere and get home safe and sound.