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Backpacker Magazine – Fall/Winter Gear Guide 2011

Gear Review: Garmin eTrex 30 GPS Unit

A compact, durable unit with sophisticated features like barometric altimeter.

by: Andrew Matranga and Kim Phillips

Gear Review: Garmin eTrex 30
Gear Review: Garmin eTrex 30

Sometimes the sequel is better than the original. Take the 30, a revamped version of Garmin’s long-running eTrex series. Similar to its predecessor, this compact, durable unit tucks easily into pack pockets and survives drops along the trail, but it also offers more sophisticated features like a three-axis, tilt-compensated compass, a barometric altimeter, and the ability to add a variety of satellite and 1:24K topo basemaps.

Thanks to the high-sensitivity GPS receiver and HotFix satellite prediction, our field scouts reported quick and steady satellite lock, even when hiking beneath sunlight-blocking canopy on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula.

Testers also praise the unit’s simple menu layout (with bigger icons and text than earlier models), newly added button labels, and sunlight-readable, 2.2-inch color screen. Bummer: Topos aren’t preloaded.

5.4 oz.
1.7GB internal storage (200 tracks)
microSD slot

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Reader Rating: -


Nov 26, 2012

Ryan dang man...! Spell check your shit!

Jun 26, 2012

Do any of you guys have advise or knowledge of other gps units? I am looking to buy another one after my Lowrance ifinder huntc was stolen. I hunt and fish all the time and I make drives while we deer hunt in thick woods. I would like to accurately mark deer stands so I can come out to the correct spots everytime. I would be marking stands, fishing spots, 4 wheeler trails, etc. I like the birds eye imagery map ability with this unit so I can see the terrain ahead of me since I know the woods fairly well where I hunt. Any suggestions or advise would be greatly appreciated. I do plan on buying the lake master chip which has lake info, roads, and public hunting in MN.

Jun 24, 2012

It is a good unit, the article doesn't mention that it can also use the Russian GLONASS satellites giving quicker and more accurate location fixes. A great budget slash entry-level device.

Jun 24, 2012

It is a good unit, the article doesn't mention that it can also use the Russian GLONASS satellites giving quicker and more accurate location fixes. A great budget slash entry-level device.

Hate Idiots
Jan 18, 2012

Mojo is a douchebag. Did I spell that correctly?

Dec 28, 2011

I think you might mean resource?("resurace")

Nov 22, 2011

i have been looking at geting aGPS and this is the one that all my resurace has let me to buy, havent had a chance to get it just but it seams like a very good gps, i like the idea of teh custum maps.


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