At this point, you can buy a smartwatch by accident. There’s a million smartwatches out there to track your steps, heart rate, distance co
At this point, you can buy a smartwatch by accident. There’s a million smartwatches out there to track your steps, heart rate, distance covered, speed, calories in, calories out, blood type, I don’t know. What’s difficult is finding smartwatches that are genuinely useful to outdoorsmen and -women. In that regard we’d steer you towards one brand: Garmin.
Garmin nearly swept our best hunting GPS awards, and their smartwatches and inReach trackers have tested well in the field. If you’ve been looking to buy an outdoors-capable smartwatch, you’re in luck, because Garmin’s Fenix 6 and Instinct Solar are both on deep discount during Amazon’s two-day Prime Day Sale.
Garmin Fenix 6 Series
Three models in Garmin’s Fenix 6 series (which was our favorite watch GPS for hunting) are at a significant discount. The Fenix 6 Pro, 6S, and 6X Sapphire all have the same great adventure features—altimeter and barometer, access to multiple global navigation satellite systems, and turn-by-turn navigation—with slight differences, mainly relating to battery time.
Fenix 6X Sapphire – 33% off
This is the most premium of the options on sale. It’ll do everything you get from the 6 Pro or 6S, plus extended battery life. You get health tracking, topographic maps, and live tracking to keep you on course. The battery on this model can last a whole 21 days in smartwatch mode and 60 hours in GPS mode.
Fenix 6 Pro – 25% off
This is the flagship of the series. In the 6 Pro, you get all the health tracking of a smartwatch along with multiple Global Navigation Satellite System support (GPS, plus GLONASS and Galileo). Active maps allow you to track your hike, which records where you’ve come from, and where you go. The battery on the 6 Pro will last 14 days in smartwatch mode and up to 36 hours in GPS.
Fenix 6S – 33% off
Remember when we said battery life was the main difference? Same here. All the same features, but with a lesser battery. You get up to 9 days in smartwatch mode and 25 hours in GPS mode. Still a full day’s worth of GPS, so not a bad deal.
But if you are worried about battery life, Garmin has the Instinct Solar. This model is already a bit rougher looking than the Fenix 6, thanks to a fully reinforced polymer front and silicone strap. It meets the military’s 810 standards for thermal shock and water resistance. Same as with the Fenix’s, this model does all the fitness, topographic, atmospheric, and GPS tracking you could ever need.
What really sets this model apart from the Fenix, is solar charging. The Instinct Solar gives you the peace of mind that your watch, and field GPS, will always have some juice in the tank. If you’ve got full charging sunlight (3 hours per day in full 50,000 lux) you can get up to 54 days in smartwatch mode, 145 hours of active GPS, and 68 days of Expedition GPS. For most, this might be overkill, but those that have had a scary situation in the backcountry will understand the peace of mind that comes with those numbers.