Total newb – need HR monitor suggestion

  • Creator
  • #42944


    I’m not new to training but new to Uphill Athlete and training for mountaineering.
    Realizing I need a chest strap HR monitor, what brand or model is good? I’ve looked on this forum and didn’t see anything specific and I’ve also read a lot of differing Amazon and REI reviews which has added to my confusion.

    Most of my training is indoors except for a weekly flat hike at low elevation and a monthly or every 6 week more difficult hike at higher elevation (that I travel 8 hours to get to).

    I’m training for my 1st climbs in Ecuador in December with a guide company.

    Thanks for any info.

  • Participant
    mzkarim on #42945

    I have a Garmin Forerunner 735XT watch and a Garmin Premium HR monitor chest strap and they have worked well together for almost 2 years. The Garmin watch battery doesn’t last for more than 5-6 hours on GPS but, other than that, no complaints.

    What mountains are you climbing in Ecuador and how many days?

    Jill on #42946

    Thanks for the reply!

    It’s a quick 9-day trip because of leaving my daughter at home and that’s as long as I want to be gone at this point.

    I’ll be acclimatizing on Fuya Fuya and Imbabura with 1-2 snow school days in Antisana prior to attempting Cotopaxi on day 8. 🙂 Any experience there?

    Fingers crossed that borders and travel are open!!

    mzkarim on #42947

    I did a very similar itinerary in December, although my acclimitization hikes were on different mountains. I did 2 days of glacier training on Antisana and summitted Cotopaxi. Cotopaxi is not technical but steep and a beautiful climb! The scenery, including the crevasses, are stunning. You’ll enjoy it! I want to climb it again.

    trygve.veslum on #42949

    Hi, Im happy with the combo Suunto 9 Baro and Polar H7 chest strap. The watch has good battery performance and good GPS accuracy / altitude readings. Im happy with the chest strap..I think theres a newer model called H10. Just stay off the Suunto chest straps; Ive had 2 of them and they failed time to time, and Ive read equal feedback on this forum.

    If you`re looking for something cheaper the Suunto Ambit3 Peak Sapphire is a perfectly good choice as well. The main reason I switched to the 9 was because the old-school type display gets laggy in low temperatures, which is especially annoying when using the track-back function. The 9 also got some bells and whistles which are fun for a couple of days before you forget they are even there. In fact; I actually wonder if the Ambit3 is even more accurate on altitude readings than the 9, because it seems to log elevation gain on even the smallest unevessen in the terrain (like 1-2m high).

    I also had a Garmin Epix which has a map function. It performs well in most situations, but once in steep terrain the GPS-tracking can be all over the place. Not sure if this has been improved for the latest (and insanely expensive) Fenix series. I know for sure Fenix 3 and 5 are just as bad GPS wise, especially here in Norway. (Yes I tried with all kind of options..)

    Suggest to be skeptical when watching youtubers reviewing GPS-watches…cause most GPS watches work perfectly fine on the beach in LA 🙂

    Jill on #42952

    Thanks for the reply. I agree that if I get all the bells and whistles when I really just want the bells that I am the type of person that will never use the whistles.

    I think, GPS, altimeter and HR is all I need.

    Question, is there a pro or con to satellite vs barometric altimeter?

    Lol about the LA youtube reviews. 🙂

    Shashi on #42966


    I have been using Coros Apex + Wahoo TICKR for the last six months. I am following the 24-week mountaineering plan and use it for all indoor and outdoor aerobic workouts. The elevation gain and total distance reported by Coros Apex is fairly accurate and consistent.

    This is my first GPS watch and similar to what you said I was mainly looking for a watch with GPS + Altimeter + HR functionality.

    Outdoor Gear Lab has a detailed review and comparison that you might find helpful.

    I am planning to climb Chimborazo, Antisana and Illiniza Sur (depending on conditions) in December with Andean Face.

    Wish you the very best!

    christophmoertl on #42968


    I am using “Garmin HRM tri”. Very comfortable to wear. Did a 14 hrs. trip and afterwards no signs on the skin or any painful sensations.
    Take care!

    Rachel on #42976

    if you already own a watch, make sure to get a chest strap that is compatible. I use the Polar H10 with my Coros Apex. The H10 supports ANT+ and Bluetooth so will work with most watches. When it starts to get wonky it probably means it’s time to change the battery.

    trygve.veslum on #42980

    “Question, is there a pro or con to satellite vs barometric altimeter?”

    You need both, because when one of them goes haywire it can rely on the other one. Eg if your position gets off the barometric altimeter prevents you from suddenly gaining/loosing substantial elevation. As long as the watch has GPS and baro I believe you are good to go. Sounds like Suunto Ambit3/9 Baro or Coros is the way to go. Not sure if Garmin has some non-Fenix watches with good GPS accuracy..Id believe so since the Scott has got one (if I remember correctly).

    juskojj on #43127

    sorry another newbie here and similar question. do i need a watch and chest strap? or is there is a chest strap that can transmit to my phone to see my heart rate?

    Garret on #43129

    Chest straps transmit your heart rate on bluetooth and/or ANT+.

    Smart phones can pick up that data and you can use it with your app of choice – no need for a watch.

    If you have a particular App on your phone that you want to use then check if it works with Bluetooth or ANT+ or both and then get a strap that has the matching protocol.

    – Garret

    Yury on #43811

    Just one more less than 100% serious test of a fitness bracelet:

Viewing 12 replies - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.