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Recommendations for Altimeter Watches

Looking for an altimeter watch.  Really only need 2 key functions for my use.  Tracks distance and altitude.  Battery life for a few days minimum without charging also because will use for backpacking.  My goal is Mount Whitney this year and have already applied for lottery permit for dates.  I was looking at the Garmin Instinct Solar GPS Watch.  Seems to have good reviews but lots of functions I do not think I would need and at $400 little pricey but not afraid to spend it.  Was trying to find something cheaper but reviews for cheaper ones all had mixed reviews.  

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Hi @Quizzer - Thanks for reaching out! It's great to hear you are training for Mount Whitney. 

As you've seen, the Garmin Instinct Solar does have a lot of features beyond the altimeter and distance tracking, with its solar capabilities and battery life being a highlight. Because it should have the power to stay on throughout trips of a few days, you could eventually find that some of those additional bells and whistles are nice to have around. 

There are a lot of other watches available, but the less expensive options do not have a battery meant to last multiple days while using the GPS. Smartwatches are a popular subject here in the community, so might you also want to take a look at these conversations on the topic:

We hope that some other members of the community will weigh in with their opinions on GPS watches as well.

Hopefully this helps. Best wishes with getting a Whitney permit in the lottery!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.
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