Adventure travelers need a watch on their arm that does more than just tell the time of day and look good. They need rugged, reliable devices that excel in harsh outdoor elements and offer practical functions like GPS, solar power and trustworthy illumination to aid them on their journeys. Read on to learn about some of our favorite performance-driven timepieces that will deliver from the beach to the peak, but look sophisticated in the boardroom as well.
Casio's solar-powered Pro Trek PRG260 compliments backcountry travelers who must track weather and stay on course. One-touch Triple Sensor Technology includes three miniaturized sensors to measure barometric pressure and altitude, temperature and to take compass readings with directional pointers that appear to float on the LCD display. A stainless steel rotating bezel offers a quick switch between time and compass measurements. Features include Tough Solar Power with a power saving function, sunrise/sunset times, full auto EL backlight with Afterglow, and a comfortable and durable black resin band. The watch is water resistant to 200 meters, and cold resistant to 14 Degrees Fahrenheit. The solar rechargeable battery lasts six months on full charge, so there's no need to worry when the skies get dark or cloud up.
Suunto was founded in 1936 by Tuomas Vohlonen, a Finnish orienteer and inventor of the liquid-filled field compass, which changed the world of orienteering overnight. Suunto Ambit2 S continues the company's history of innovation. Built specifically for cycling, swimming, running and multisport training, the light and sleek Suunto Ambit2 S compliments athletes and explorers alike. GPS provides accurate pace, distance and route navigation. Features include a heart rate monitor, altimeter, chronograph and computer connectivity. The rechargeable lithium ion battery lasts between 15 and 50 hours depending on GPS settings. Ambit2 S integrates with Suunto's App Zone, a community forum that allows users to find and create free sports-specific apps for Ambit GPS watches.
Designed especially for professional mountaineers and great for extreme skiers and snowboarders, the complex and aesthetic Tissot T-Touch Expert is a manly, highly functional timepiece. The Swiss-made quartz chronograph watch has intricately designed carbon-fiber hands—you'll check the time constantly just to look at them. Features include a touch-activated screen with 16 functions, including two time zones, two alarms, an altimeter, compass, navigation, navigation azimuth, thermometer and barometer. A tactile scratch-resistant sapphire crystal screen with anti-reflective coating protects against scrapes and impacts. Wearers can choose either stainless steel or high-tech titanium cases; leather, rubber or silicone straps; and solid stainless steel or titanium bands. Tissot T-Touch Expert performs on the summit attempt, impresses in the boardroom and will definitely turn heads in the pub.
Built to endure abuse and keep on ticking, the Swiss-built Extreme Sport Carbon Pro is tailored for hardcore outdoor enthusiasts. Features include a carbon dial, scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, screw-down crown and bidirectional rotating steel bezel. Water resistant to 183 meters, it's ideal for diving, and superb for kayaking, surfing and white water rafting. The watch is built with stout double-case construction: the outer case features fiberglass-reinforced resin; while the inner case is a steel container. The watch employs a self-activated light source called trigalight, which uses tritium gas, for bright, clear illumination in the dark and low light conditions. Trigalight eliminates the need to replace batteries and lasts 10 years.
Victorinox, maker of the original Swiss Army Knife, also crafts the Base Camp, a rugged yet refined precision chronograph watch ideal for a wide array of outdoor excursions. Features include shock-resistant hardened mineral quartz for protection during jarring activities, luminous hands and hour markers for outings that last into the night, and a stainless steel bracelet with a double-locking safety clasp for a secure, comfortable fit. Base Camp allows precision timing down to one-tenth of a second and 60-second and 30-minute counters. Water resistance to 100 meters protects the watch while diving, and you can wear it with impunity in the rain and snow. Base Camp comes in six different flavors, each with a different look and feel.
St. Moritz Watch Corp., based in Vancouver, B.C., encased its Swiss quartz analogue Momentum Vortech GMT watch in a 44-millimeter matte titanium case, making it light and tough. Subtly stylish, the watch includes components that are sourced from all over the world while final assembly and testing are completed in Vancouver. Features include a loud wake-up alarm with a ceramic resonator to ensure you arise early for adventures, a Greenwich Mean Time hand for world travelers to track a second time zone, and precision movement. Momentum's Super-LumiNova illumination lets you easily see the hands and indices in the dark. The silver-oxide cell battery lasts two to three years, and the wearer can choose either a black leather or titanium band.