Who Likes Their Watch?

  • Creator
  • #67411
    Victor Grijalva

    I’m in the market for a new watch. Currently using Apple watch but went on a 6 hour climb yesterday and it died on me. Battery is only good for about 6 hours in GPS mode and about 3 if using GPS and music. Not good for a multiday climb.

    Started researching best watches but there is too much info so I thought I would post here. Anyone really like their watch and would recommend it?

    All seem to have good set of standard features but I’m looking for watch that has good battery life in GPS mode, has music (for my runs), is not glitchy, syncs well to Training Peaks and syncs well to chest strap.



  • Moderator
    krish on #67413

    FWIW, I love my Garmin Fenix 7. It comes in several sizes and the battery lasts a LONG time. No issues syncing with TP either.

    lapotka on #67417

    I love my Suunto 9 and it has a lot of battery power in the lower accuracy GPS mode if you’re doing multi day mountain objectives. the proprietary suunto ap is a turn off for some people but it syncs with training peaks just fine. no music on the 9 but the other models support spotify. I know it sounds dorky but I’m considering getting an apple watch so I have a phone and music on my runs and using the suunto for fitness tracking because I don’t think one watch can do all the things without seriously sacrificing batter time and i’m tired of my brick of an Iphone bouncing about in my pockets.

    Victor Grijalva on #67426


    Thanks for the recommendation, a friend of mine also recommend the Fenix 7 so I’m taking a look at that one.


    Victor Grijalva on #67427


    Thanks for the recommendation. The Apple watch will work great for what you are wanting to do. That was the original purpose of mine! BTW, I could not stand the phone in the pocket either!


    Stephanie Stefanski on #67432

    Love this thread!

    My Apple Watch ended up being a paperweight on my last expedition, and died right at the end of my recent long hike – so I feel your pain! I can usually get the battery up to 6-7 hours by reducing most features and notifications, and going into airplane mode.

    After similarly extensive research, I am currently considering the Fenix 7 Sapphire Solar for the ability to extend battery life on multi day / long treks.

    My friend who is an endurance runner loves her Garmin Enduro, since she just needs long battery life but not necessarily the navigation system of the Fenix.

    I also found this DCRainmaker review of the Fenix vs the Epix to be helpful!

    Looking forward to hearing from the others on their favorite watches!

    Jasrockett on #67433

    I jumped into my first watch by buying a mint condition, second hand Fenix 6X Pro for 1/3rd retail cost. It’s a stunning piece of kit.

    MarkPostle on #67436

    I have had good luck with the garmin/Fenix watches and also with the Garmin Forerunner 245 if you’re looking for a price point watch but still with tons of features and good battery life. Can sometimes find it onsale for close to $200.

    Eric im Bayern on #67458

    I use the Garmin Instinct, which I find to be ideal for the Alps. It has a very accurate barometric altimeter (I usually am within 20m after a 1000m gain), which is key to prevent errors with the GPS track jumping around to nearby peaks. I also like the high contrast black and white screen, the ease of pairing it with my polar HR strap and the 16 hours of recording battery life. The main limitation to the watch is the lack of maps, but I don’t find this to be an issue in the Alps, since everything is well-marked.

    Matthew Morriss on #67491

    A bit more $$ but I love my Coros Apex https://www.outdoorgearlab.com/topics/camping-and-hiking/best-gps-watch
    I’ve had mine for two years and really liked it.


    I have a Coros Vertix and like it. The best thing going for the watch is the battery life far exceeds most of the other watches. I don’t think the Coros software and app are as well developed as Garmin and Suunto.

    SFmike on #67498


    I’ve been running a Fenix 5sPlus for a few years and still like it. Battery life seems to depend a bit on how your GPS settings are configured (eg. how often it pings the satellite). Generally, mine will use about 10%/hour when tracking but that might be due to the battery’s age, and I think I can get better performance if I adjust the settings. In regular watch mode it still lasts over a week. Syncing to TrainingPeaks is easy (via the Garmin app on my iPhone – the data has to xfer via bluetooth from the watch to your smartphone, then via cellular/wifi from your smartphone to the interwebs, then it’ll hit TrainingPeaks…at least that’s how it works on my setup anyway).

    The upshot with this model is that it’s a bit smaller than other models and is more proportional on my skinny wrists. Most other GPS watches look ridiculous on me.

    Happy hunting,

    Victor Grijalva on #67511

    Thanks everyone for all the great information — sincerely appreciated! I went with the Garmin Forerunner 945. There are a few write-ups comparing it to the Fenix 7 and the Forerunner 945 is characterized as a “poor man’s” Fenix 7. It has mostly all the same features but the Fenix 7 has a better build but is also heavier. Bottom line, I did not want to spend the money on the Fenix 7 and found the Forerunner 945 for $350 and that was in line with what I wanted to spend.

    Jeremy on #67548

    I also use the instinct. I find it does everything i need it to and it doesnt break the bank if you end up losing it or breaking. I bought mine used and now find that the battery is diminishing a bit. I may buy another as it is on sale usually because the 2nd version is out. However it seems that the 2nd version is not that much different.

    For those who have the more expensive watches, how long do they last before the batteries start to fade?


    Chad Di Stefano on #67741

    I have Garmin Instinct Solar. Good price point, very capable, amazing battery life. Lots of hiking / outdoor features. Pairs well with Garmin HRM.

    Jeremy on #67742

    For what it’s worth my Instinct stopped syncing with the Garmin Connect App. Tried everything. Now considering if i should go with Suuto.

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