Garmin Vista HCX

Without a doubt the best of the GPS units that can’t display Ordnance Survey maps on their screens. The Vista is compact and light, and offers just about all the features a walker could want with the exception of OS mapping. It picks up a fix in seconds and is robust enough and sufficiently waterproof to use anywhere at any time. It’s simple to set up, and if you’re planning your walk on a PC then data transfer could not be easier. Manual waypoint input isn’t too painful either. In the hills, the compass page points the way with a clear Direction of Travel arrow, and if your walk is particularly complex, you may even want to try the Highway page – a basic 3D representation of your route which shows all the twists and turns as you go. Battery life is absolutely superb, over three days out of a single set of lithium batteries. And it has an electronic compass and a barometric altimeter – really useful in the mountains. The buttons are easy to operate, with a simple, single button press to input a waypoint that can then be used as a Go-To or to mark the spot where you are stood.

VITAL STATS
Size
: 5.6x10.7x3cm
Weight: 156g
Routes/waypoints: 50 routes; 1,000 waypoints
WAAS/EGNOS-enabled: Yes
PC/Mac-compatible: Both
Works with: Most software including Memory-Map
Features: Electronic compass, barometric altimeter
Battery type/claimed life: 2xAA/14hrs
Contact: 0808 238 0000; www.garmin.co.uk