The Best 8 Hiking Watch in 2019

The way we hike has changed a lot over the years. These days, there is no need to pack a heavy map, compass and notepad to keep track of everything while you hike. All you need is a great hiking watch. The best hiking watch for you will fit your style, and provide the right combination of style and versatile function. Hiking watches come in a huge variety of prices and uses, so it can be tough to pick the right one. That’s why we have put together this list of the best hiking watches of 2019, to help you make the best purchase for you.

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BEST CHOICE

Suunto Core Wrist-Top Computer Watch with Altimeter, Barometer, Compass, and Depth Measurement
Suunto Core Wrist-Top Computer Watch with Altimeter

PREMIUM PICK

Garmin epix

BEST VALUE

Timex Men's Expedition Rugged Core Analog
Timex Men’s Expedition Rugged Core Analog

The Best Hiking Watch

 1. Our Pick: Suunto Core Wrist-Top Computer Watch with Altimeter, Barometer, Compass, and Depth Measurement

BEST CHOICE

1. Our Pick: Suunto Core Wrist-Top Computer Watch with Altimeter, Barometer, Compass, and Depth Measurement

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Multiple functions for navigation
  • Looks great as hiking gear or for normal wear
  • Durable, weatherproof build

PROS

  • Easy to use
  • Sleek, elegant design
  • Comfortable to wear

CONS

  • Waterproof only to a certain depth
  • May have some issues with buttons sticking

DETAILS

This watch from Suunto is on the top of our list because of its awesome versatility and great look. You can use it to navigate, keep track of your altitude and air pressure and of course tell the time, plus more.

The watch has a sleek black face and a simple single color wristband, giving it an overall classy look for an outdoorsman. The settings are pretty simple to figure out, and once you get used to it, it is your all-in-one outdoor tool. The altimeter function helps you know how high up you are and how much further you need to climb. The barometer will let you know when there is a dangerous storm front coming in. A sunrise / sunset feature allows you to keep track of the sunrise and sunset times wherever you are in the world, so that you can always get the most out of your day.

This is a waterproof and weatherproof wash. It will hold up to wear in any weather conditions. The screen is super durable and scratch resistant. Overall, it is an awesome purchase for someone who spends a lot of time outdoors.

2. Premium Pick: Garmin epix

 2. Premium Pick: Garmin epix

 PREMIUM PICK

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • A wide range of uses
  • Easy to navigate, high resolution touch screen
  • Comes with features for hiking and working out

PROS

  • Rugged and water resistant
  • Good battery life for a smart watch
  • Makes navigating simple

CONS

  • Pricier than other options
  • May be slow to load maps

DETAILS

Let’s kick it up a notch, from a simple analog watch to a fully digitized, touchscreen smartwatch for hiking. The Garmin Epix is a little pricier than some of the other watches reviewed on this list, but it has some incredible functions – it’s like wearing a weatherproof smartphone on your wrist at all times.

The watch comes with a 1.4 inch, high resolution touch screen, and 8 GB of memory. It has a built-in altimeter, barometer and compass. The GPS navigation features detailed mapping of streets and trails, and can be personalized to remember your typical routes. It is also Bluetooth compatible, so it can connect to your smart phone or device and update you on any calls, texts or emails you might otherwise miss while you are hiking.

Despite all the high tech, this is a super rugged and durable watch. It is weatherproof and water resistant up to 50 meters, so you can wear it swimming or in the shower after your workout. Speaking of workouts – this watch comes with various training features to track your steps, pulse, etc. while you are hiking or exercising.

To sum it up, this is an awesome watch for a traveler or busy outdoorsman. While it may be a little more high tech than you would need for hiking alone, it has a ton of features to improve your daily life, in or out of the wilderness.

3. Best Value: Timex Men’s Expedition Rugged Core Analog

 3. Best Value: Timex Men’s Expedition Rugged Core Analog

 BEST VALUE

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Super rugged and durable
  • Reliable to use in all weather conditions
  • Great price for the quality

PROS

  • Water resistant
  • Long lasting
  • Classy-looking analog face

CONS

  • Not as many special features as other watches
  • Cannot be worn deep underwater

DETAILS

It’s hard to disagree with the timeless quality of a Timex watch. This Expedition hiking watch may look simple, but it comes with tons of functions for outdoor use. The date can be easily set, and the watch dial lights up for easy use in the dark. The analog face is large and easy to read. It is water resistant for up to 50 meters – which means you will have no problem swimming with it on, but you should not wear it diving or snorkeling.

They call this watch “rugged” for a reason. The case is made out of super durable, crack and scratch resistant resin. The band is tough resin, too, and comfortable to wear. It comes in multiple colors, but we recommend the simple, sleek black model for the best look.

Best of all, this watch comes at an insanely affordable price, compared to other outdoor watches. All things considered, you might lose out on some of the special features with this Timex, but it is a great budget watch for a guy who just wants something simple and reliable.

4. Baxter of California Facial Scrub

4. Baxter of California Facial Scrub

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Convenience of a smart watch without the sensitivity of a touch screen
  • Looks great for daily wear
  • Versatile multi-sport functions

PROS

  • Sleek design
  • Makes running and hiking easier
  • Durable build for long term use

CONS

  • A little harder to figure out how to use without the touch screen
  • Battery life may get shorter over time

DETAILS

This next Garmin watch is one of the better looking options on our list, as well as one of the most intelligent. It has a smart, easy to use GPS navigation system to keep you from getting lost while you are out on the trails, as well as a digital compass, altimeter and barometer.

While it is great for hiking, the Fenix 5X is mainly advertised as a sport watch. It has multiple applications to monitor your heart rate, count steps and keep track of distance, help you log your progress and even improve your golf stroke. It also connects to your smartphone to allow you to view incoming calls and texts.

The slate gray Sapphire Glass model is one of our favorites in terms of appearance. It has a sleek round face that is easy to read even in bright sunlight. The band is simple and black. One thing that some guys might find annoying is that the watch face is not a touch screen – however, it is much more durable than a lot of touchscreen watches out there, and still pretty easy to navigate through the features with elegant buttons and dials along the side. This is a great watch for hiking or any sports. It functions well and will last for years.

5. Timex Expedition Grid Shock Watch

5. Timex Expedition Grid Shock Watch

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Hydration reminders
  • Keep track of your best run times with chronograph function
  • Soft backlight

PROS

  • Multiple functions for hiking and sports
  • Waterproof up to 100 meters
  • Simple to use and comfortable to wear

CONS

  • Bulky, less sleek look – not great for work or going out
  • Might be too big for someone with smaller wrists

DETAILS

This versatile watch from Timex is simple and affordable, but has just enough functions to make your hiking trip easier. It is waterproof up to 100 meters, so you can easily take it swimming and even snorkeling without any problems. A built-in stopwatch, vibration alarm, countdown timer and customizable hydration reminders help you to get the most out of your hike, run or swim.

The screen is fairly big and easy to read even from a distance. It has a backlight so that you can read it easily at night. A stainless steel top plate and shock resistant design make it incredibly durable for use in any weather conditions. The battery is guaranteed to hold its charge for at least a year before it needs replacing.

One issue some guys might have with this watch is the appearance. It is a little bulky and has a large rectangular face – it might not be the watch you want to wear to work or around town. If you are just wearing it for your hike or run, though, it could be a great, affordable and reliable option.

6. Casio Men’s “Pro Trek” Outdoor GPS Resin Sports Watch

6. Casio Men’s “Pro Trek” Outdoor GPS Resin Sports Watch

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Offline mapping system to keep you on route even deep in the mountains
  • Multiple sport applications
  • High resolution, easy to read screen

PROS

  • Comfortable to wear and easy to use
  • Memory keeps track of your route and progress
  • Affordable for a smart watch

CONS

  • Not as rugged as others
  • May be slow to load and update maps

DETAILS

Another intelligent navigating watch, this Casio Pro Trek comes with a high resolution screen, full color maps system, and plenty of pre-installed applications for hiking, fishing and sports. Best of all, it is one of the more affordable smart watches available right now.

Included among the hiking tools built into this watch are a compass, step counter, altimeter and barometer. It has other applications that will help with all of your outdoor activities, including Hole19 for golf, and Fishbrain for fishing. Even without a touchscreen function, it is easy to switch between these apps with the buttons on the side of the watch.

The GPS system is what really makes this Casio a great hiking watch. Not only are the maps clear and full color, but there is also an offline mapping function – which is awesome for backpacking and longer hiking trips. With a good memory function, you can keep track of your route and see how far along you are at all times.

As far as durability, this may not be the most rugged watch out there, but it is waterproof up to 50 meters and not likely to chip or scratch, especially with a screen protector. The battery life is average, generally lasting two days of normal use between charges. Overall, it is a great, affordable navigating watch for a backpacker or hardcore hiker.

7. Timex Men’s Expedition Field Chronograph Watch

7. Timex Men’s Expedition Field Chronograph Watch

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Classy rugged look
  • Durable and super reliable
  • Comfortable band and reasonably sized face

PROS

  • Accurate chronograph function
  • Waterproof up to 100 meters
  • Long, reliable battery life

CONS

  • No compass or other hiking tools
  • No backlighting – but hands glow for reading at night

DETAILS

This rugged Timex Expedition is a great analog watch and chronograph for hiking and exploring, or just everyday wear. The watch face is large and scratch-resistant, and the band is comfortable woven fabric or leather, depending on your preference.

As far as special functions for hiking, unfortunately this watch does fall a little short. It does not have a built-in compass, altimeter or barometer. It does have a sleek chronograph function, though, to allow you to time your hike, run or swim down to the millisecond. It is also waterproof up to 100 meters and super durable, with at least a year guaranteed battery life.

One of the reasons we wanted to include this Timex on our list, despite its lack of functions for hiking, is its classic outdoorsman look. This would be a great watch to wear to work, around town, on a date – wherever. And it is also durable enough to take on your outdoor expeditions. All-in-all, if you are looking for a solid, reliable watch that looks great and functions well, this Timex could be the one for you.

8. PALADA Men’s Digital Sports Watch Waterproof Tactical Watch

8. PALADA Men’s Digital Sports Watch Waterproof Tactical Watch

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT

  • Clear to read in any light conditions
  • Accurate chronograph function
  • Looks good for sport or daily wear

PROS

  • Affordable and reliable
  • Easy to adjust time and date settings
  • Military-style appearance

CONS

  • Face may be a little big for some
  • No compass or other hiking tools

DETAILS

The final watch on our list of the best hiking watches has a cool, industrial look, a backlit LCD screen, and a crazy affordable price tag. If you are looking for a cheap and effective sports watch, this Palada just might do the trick.

The digital screen is super easy to read, day and night. It has a chronograph function, adjustable calendar and can be set on a 12 hour or 24 hour clock, depending on your preferences. The face might be a little big for someone with a smaller wrist, but it is comfortable to wear and looks great on most guys.

The watch is water resistant up to 50 meters. You can swim and shower with it on, but you won’t want to take it deep underwater. While the screen is scratch-resistant, it is not quite as durable as some other watches, so you should be a little cautious while wearing it.

Overall, this is a great budget option for form and function alike.

Criteria Used to Evaluate Hiking Watches

Now that you have had a look at some of the very best hiking watches on the market in 2019, let’s talk about picking the best one. There are a lot of things to look for in a hiking watch – the amount of special features and functions you need will depend on your lifestyle and preferences, but there are a few factors you shouldn’t ignore, in any watch.

Battery Life:

First of all, a good battery life is really important for a watch you are going to be wearing outdoors. A lot of smart watches have pretty low batter lives – that is the compromise you make for all the high tech features. If you buy a smart watch for hiking, make sure you have a portable method for charging it, especially if you are setting off on a long camping or backpacking trip

Ruggedness and Durability:

Every watch that you are going to wear outdoors needs to be durable. Water resistance is a must – even if you don’t plan on swimming with your watch on, you never know when you might be surprised by rain or snow. We recommend a watch that is water resistant at least up to 50 meters.

A scratch-resistant watch face is also important. If you wear your watch hiking, you should be prepared for it to come into contact with rocks and branches. If possible, you should see if your watch producer sells screen protectors to extend the life of your watch.

FAQs

What features should a hiking watch have?

It depends on your needs. A compass can come in really handy, as can an altimeter or barometer. At the very least, a watch with a timer or chronograph function will help you out on your hike.

Can I go swimming / diving with my watch on?

If your watch is water resistant for up to 50 or 100 meters, you should be able to swim and shower without damaging it. We do not recommend diving with your watch on, unless it is specifically marketed as a watch for deep water diving.

Conclusion

If you spend a lot of time outdoors, a sturdy and reliable hiking watch is a must. The best hiking watch will look great, help you to navigate and track the time, and make your outdoor excursions easier. Now that you know what to look for, you can invest in the best hiking or sport watch for your lifestyle.

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Written by Mark Greene

Mark Greene is writer and life coach dedicated to helping men to perform at peak level. He shares dating advice, style tips and strategies for building wealth and success.

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