I don't normally bother with a GPS. It doesn't quite fit my ultralight principles. The extra few ounces that I could live without – as I would not leave map and compass at home.
However, Backpacker Magazine is looking for volunteers to help gather some mapping data and write-up trail guides/accounts. I agreed to do this for the our Wonderland Trail hike in July. To do so, I need to bring a GPS to track coordinates and record way points.
So what do I buy? Here's my criteria:
– As light as possible.
– Can log up-to 10 days or 100 miles of data.
– Has enough battery life for 10 days.
I don't care about maps and fancy color screens. Lithium Ion rechargeable models are obviously out due to lack of recharge ability.
After a bit of digging around, it looks like the Garmin Geko 301 is coming up trumps.
It weighs just 3.1 oz with batteries – and has a run-time of 12 hrs on two AAA's. We will be planning a few resupply points – so shipping in some extra batteries should be no worries. Retails for $246.
If anyone has a better idea, I'd love to hear it…