Hiking GPS Brands

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Hiking GPS devices are one of the essential tools for mountaineering/ hiking. And with the rising  popularity of this  outdoor activity GPS devices of different brands and kinds have entered the market.

In choosing a new GPS device, you need to determine what kind of GPS unit you need, what features you want, and how much you’re willing to spend. Here, we list some of the most popular makers of hiking GPS devices.


Garmin Ltd. is one of the leaders in GPS technology that is used in automotive, aviation, marine, outdoor and sports activities. Some of the  GPS devices Garmin have in their line are:

  • Hand-held GPS – Some of their most popular devices are hand-held GPS devices which are among their earliest products. Just a decade ago, Garmin launched its first series of personal GPS devices for runners, after which  they continuously introduced wrist-worn GPS devices with 2-dimensional GPS tracking and waypoint projection, which are quite popular among day hikers, off-road mountain bikers and sailboat racers.
  • Laptop GPS and Mobile apps: In 2008, Garmin launched Garmin Mobile PC, a GPS navigation software program for laptops, PCs  and other computers. And in 2011, Garmin started offering mobile apps for Android, Windows Phone and iPhone.

One of Garmin’s best products is Garmin Dakota 20,  a small and ultra light hand-held GPS device offering touchscreen navigation. It’s equipped with HotFix satellite prediction, barometric altimeter, 3-axis electronic compass and microSD card slot. It’s probably the best affordable touchscreen option in the market.

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Magellan Navigation

Magellan Navigation,  one of America’s top producers of consumer and professional grade global positioning system receivers, is named after Ferdinand Magellan, the first explorer to circumnavigate the globe.

They develop and distribute vehicle navigation crossover GPS, outdoor handheld navigation products, customized mapping software for topographic, marine and street navigation. Some of their current GPS product line includes:

  • Magellan Roadmate and Magellan Maestro Series for car navigation system
  • Magellan eXplorist and Magellan Triton Series for outdoor hand-held navigation.

One of Magellan Navigations best products is Magellan eXplorist 710, a rugged waterproof hand-held GPS device that is capable of navigating  you from your doorstep to the summit. It features a 3-inch touchscreen, 3-axis electronic compass, barometric altimeter, 3.2 MP camera, microphone and speaker.

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A producer of personal satellite tracking, messaging and navigation technology, one of their main products is inReach, which provides the ability to send and receive text messages anywhere in the world using the Iridium satellite constellation.

DeLorme also produces printed atlas and topographic software products. They are known to combine digital technologies with human editors to verify travel information and details to ensure accuracy.

One of Delorme’s best hiking GPS devices is the DeLorme InReach Explorer. Whether you want to navigate, create waypoints, log your trip and find your way back, send and receive text messages, trigger an interactive SOS, plan, track and share your journey, you can do all of these with one rugged hand-held device with 100% global coverage from Iridium.

You can also trigger an SOS, receive a delivery confirmation, and communicate back and forth with DeLorme’s 24/7 search and rescue monitoring center.

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Bushnell has produced WeatherFX, a personal weather station for hikers, campers and others, which allows users to be informed of potentially hazardous weather  conditions. They have created the first aerial and satellite imagery into their device’s display. They have also integrated XM radio in their devices to provide real-time weather data and can overlay weather maps and radar info.

Bushnell’s Onix400 Waterproof Hiking GPS device has the attractive feature of XM Weather receiver which enables one to see when the storm is coming, its severity and to estimate roughly when it will be in your location and how long it will take until it passes. It also has XM radio that can select from over 170 channels for music, news sports or entertainment.

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Lowrance Electronic

A manufacturer of consumer sonar and GPS receivers as well as digital mapping systems, Lowrance Electronic  is best known for its High Definition Systems (HDS) and add-on performance modules which include Broadband 4G Radar, StructureScan with SideScan and DownScan Imaging.

It has been a leader in marine electronics since it invented the first consumer sonar device in 1957. Extremely easy to use yet packed with the features anglers the world over know and love, Lowrance continues to set the bar for the best recreational fishing technology.

Lowrance electronic’s LowranceEndura Out and Back hand-held GPS comes with a base map that lists key landscape elements, including lakes, rivers, primary and secondary NAVTEQ roads and 200,000 points of interest.

While its maps may look pretty basic compared to some of the more upscale GPS systems, they are more than adequate for a lot of basic outdoor adventures. Lowrance do take the hunter’s needs into consideration in all of their Endura GPS systems with their features for keeping track of tree stands, blinds, tracks, rubs, blood trails and much more.

Find Lowrance GPS on Amazon