Get a GPS with core functions in a wrist-ready, weather-resistant package that weighs little more than a watch. Said one minimalist tester: “The 401 complemented my map-and-compass navigation and gave me extra confidence when I was in tricky terrain in Rocky Mountain National Park.” It’s a bit bulky on the wrist, so we usually strap it to a pack’s shoulder harness. The 401 stores up to 500 waypoints and 10 tracks, and the high-sensitivity GPS chip rivals those in more expensive units.
Other features include a barometric altimeter, electronic compass, and the ability to share GPS info wirelessly with other compatible Garmins. Expect 12 hours on two AAA batteries. Caveat: The 1.8-inch, black-and-white screen is surprisingly readable in direct sun, but it isn’t designed for advanced onscreen navigation. No preloaded maps, either. $250; 2.2 oz.;