Hunting has its moments of thrill and challenges. But no hunter wants to undergo the feeling of being lost.
When you’re just going to the old woods at the back of the family property, that may not be a big problem. But what if your search for the hunt takes you into unfamiliar trails. So next time, when you are getting ready for a day hunting, make sure before setting out that you have the suitable stuff to help you navigate the new trail with ease.
GPS comes handy in helping hunters with their direction, waypoints, elevation & sunset timings, and many more. But finding the best hunting GPS is confusing as all GPS aren’t meant for hunters.
Here we listed 10 Best Hunting GPS based on in-depth research and top reviews.
Comparison Chart for Top 10 Hunting GPS In 2020
|Hunting GPS||Navigation System|
|Garmin Foretrex 401||GPS|
|Garmin inReach Explorer||GPS|
|Garmin GPSMAP 64st||GPS and GLONASS|
|Garmin Rino 755t||GMRS two-way radio and GPS|
|Garmin eTrex 30x||GPS and GLONASS|
|Garmin GPSMAP 66st||GNSS|
|Garmin Montana 680t||GPS and GLONASS|
|Oregon 600||Dual-band GPS/GLONASS|
|Oregon 700||Dualband GPS/GLONASS|
Which are the 10 Best Hunting GPS In 2020?
1. Garmin Foretrex 401 Waterproof Hiking GPS
Display resolution: 100 x 64 pixels
Battery life: Up to 17 hours in GPS mode
Track Log 10000.
Display size: 1.42 x 0.91 inches
Power Source: 2 AAA Batteries
Weight: 3.1 ounces
This Hiking GPS is an ultra-light wrist-ready and weatherproof GPS unit. You can securely strap it on your wrist and do other tasks freely. This Foretrex 401 keeps track of your path and displays it as a dotted path on the screen. This light-weight device is perfect for hunters, hikers, skiers, and campers.
This GPS receiver uses digital breadcrumbs. It keeps information of where you started, even if you are hiking in the range where you have never been there before. It has a high sensitivity GPS receiver with HotFix that provides enhanced performance and reception in heavy tree cover or deep canyons.
It comes with Trackback feature that retraces your paths on the easy to read LCD. You can track your trip by connecting Fortrex with a PC or Mac with USB. It allows you to store waypoints, routes and tracks wirelessly with another Fortrex 401. The HotFix satellite prediction also enhances its performance in wooded areas, canyons, and cloud covers.
It also features trip computer, hunting/fishing information, sunrise/sunset times, electronic compass and barometric altimeter.
- It comes with dual-position readout.
- It is a versatile and portable hunting GPS.
- It has an extension wrist strap.
- It comes with a one year warranty.
- This hunting GPS system gives timely, accurate data even in the dense canopy.
- It offers 17 hours of use from a single charge of Lithium-ion battery.
- It allows you to view your current location in multiple formats with dual position readout.
- You might want to turn some features off from time to time as they drain the battery unnecessarily.
2. Garmin inReach Explorer+
Screen: 200×265 pixels color screen
Navigation Tools: Compass, accelerometer, and barometric altimeter
Extras: Iridium satellite communication, interactive SOS, connects with Earthmate-app
The inReach Explorer+ is designed to meet the necessities of most demanding hunting GPS users. It can get you out of a tricky situation when you need it the most. It is a user-friendly and lightweight device.
It comes with a 100% global Iridium-Satellite coverage that allows two-way text messaging from anywhere. However, you’ll need to pay for a satellite subscription.
You can also share your location with family and friends. Furthermore, you can pair it with your mobile using the free Earthmate application. It allows you to access the downloadable maps, colored aerial imagery, US NOAA charts, and many more.
This inReach Explorer enables you to add preloaded DeLorme TOPO maps with GPS routing. Its transmit/receiver speed is excellent as well as the device is easy to use.
- It pairs with mobile devices.
- It provides two-way text communication via satellite.
- It has good build quality.
- It is one of the best GPS units.
- It has an IPX7 waterproof rating.
- It allows you to share your location with friends.
3. Garmin GPSMAP 64st, TOPO U.S. 100K with High-Sensitivity GPS
Screen: 160×240 pixels
Display: 2.6-inch color
Satellite Navigation Systems: GPS and GLONASS
Navigation Tools: Compass, accelerometer, and barometric altimeter
Battery Life: 16 hours
This GPSMAP 64st is a sleek, rugged, and high-performance handheld GPS unit. It features a high-sensitivity GPS and GLONASS receiver with a quad-helix antenna for reliable reception.
It gives wireless connectivity so that you can stay connected to your phone without digging into your backpack. With its 3-axis compass and a barometric altimeter, you can track elevation without holding it level. Moreover, the altimeter monitors the barometric air pressure to point out your precise altitude.
It is a sturdy hunting GPS and doesn’t feature a fancy touchscreen, so there is nothing to break. The Base-camp software lets you view and organize maps, routes, and waypoints. It also allows you to transfer unlimited satellite images to your device when paired with a BirdsEye Satellite Imagery subscription.
- It is fast and accurate.
- It offers wireless-connectivity.
- It has sturdy built and value for money device.
- This hunting GPS comes with a sunlight-readable color screen.
- Battery life isn’t good when using both GPS and GLONASS.
- Its menus are complicated to use.
4. Garmin Rino 755t, Rugged Handheld 2-Way Radio and GPS Navigator
Display: 3″ glove-friendly color touchscreen
Powerful 5W FRS/GMRS radio
Connectivity: Bluetooth wireless
camera: Built-in 8MP digital
The Rino 755t is a 5w GMRS two-way radio and GPS navigator. It offers an extended range of up to 20 miles. It allows you to communicate with your hunting buddy by voice or unit-to-unit text-messaging. The 755t GPS navigator opens up new areas in the wilderness without the fear of getting lost.
This device comes with a GPS and GLONASS satellite reception. It tracks in a more challenging environment than GPS alone.
The satellite positioning report option shows the location of other Rino 755t users on the same channel. With a dual-battery system, it gives 14 hours between charges on Li-ion pack or 18 hours backup with AA batteries.
Also, it provides preloaded TOPO US 100k maps and an 8-megapixel camera with LED flash. This handheld GPS brings a whole new level of confidence to your outdoor adventures with its amazing features.
- It is rugged and compact.
- It has a touchscreen display with dual orientation.
- It is the best handheld GPS for hunting, camping, and trekking.
- It offers good battery life.
- It has a comfortable gloves friendly design.
- It supports BaseCamp software to track photos and see their locations on the map.
5. Garmin eTrex 30x, Handheld GPS Navigator
Screen: 240×320 pixels
Display: 2.2″ 65K-color sunlight-readable
Navigation-Systems: WAAS-enabled GPS and GLONASS
Track log: 10,000 points, 200 saved tracks
Sensors: 3axis compass & barometric altimeter
Battery Life: 25 hours
This eTrex 30x is an upgrade version of eTrex 30 and Garmin eTrex 20x, with improved screen-resolution for a readable display and internal memory expanded to hold more maps.
It is a lightweight device and ideal for hiking, trekking, hunting, mountaineering, and Geocaching. The compact, waterproof, and shock-resistant design makes it perfect for any outdoor event. It can track both GPS and GLONASS satellites.
It comes with a 65k color sunlight-readable display that gives an increased resolution.
This unit comes with a built-in three-axis tilt-compensated electronic compass and a barometric altimeter. It traces the change in pressure to pinpoint your accurate altitude.
The device consists of an electronic compass that can show directions even when the unit is not leveled. It also comes with a preloaded with a worldwide base map.
With its 3.7GB internal memory and MicroSD card slot, you can load more maps as per your need.
- Its upgraded display provides clearer images.
- It has water-proof and shockproof construction.
- This hunting GPS device comes with built-in sensors.
- These hunting GPS devices offer an excellent battery backup.
- It provides wireless-connectivity.
- It has ample storage capacity for storing maps.
- It has a small size display.
- Its user interface isn’t good.
6. Garmin GPSMAP 66st Handheld Hiking GPS
Display: 3″ sunlight readable color
Display size: 1.5 W x 2.5 H inch
Global Navigation-Satellite Systems
It is premium handheld GPS with Birdseye satellite imagery subscription and topographic maps. The GPSMAP 66st is compatible with its Explore website and app that helps you manage routes, track, and waypoints.
Its wireless-connectivity feature supports Active Weather for forecasts update. It also provides animated weather radar and Geocaching Live for mobile syncing and updates.
The device comes with an LED flashlight function and 16 hours of battery life in GPS mode. Its buttons have a better click feel than its previous model. It is designed to military standards for thermal, shock, and water resistant performance.
- It comes with pre-installed TOPO US and Canada map.
- It features a large display and flashlight functions.
- It is fit with night vision goggles.
- It has solid, sturdy built.
7. Garmin Montana 680t
Screen: 4-inch color touchscreen
Satellite Navigation Systems: GPS and GLONASS
Navigation Tool: barometric altimeter and Compass
Battery Life: 22 hours
Extras: Camera, preloaded maps
The Montana 680t comes pre-installed with 250,000 worldwide geocaches. You can examine your surroundings as it comes with one year Birdseye satellite imagery subscription.
It has a 4″ touchscreen with a menu-filled with features. You can find the estimated time of arrival, your location, and many more. Moreover, it gives crips images and easy operations.
This model comes with an 8-MP digital camera that provides high-quality images and great resolution. The interesting thing is that the camera geotags the photo with coordinates.
It includes an electronic compass to help hunters to locate their bearings. Also, the barometric altimeter traces changes in the air pressure so you can predict the changes in weather patterns.
- It has easy to use interface.
- This hunting GPS device has a rugged construction.
- Its digital camera captures the moment.
- These hunting GPS devices give good signal reception even in the dense forest.
- The TOPO maps and street maps are of low-resolution.
8. Garmin Oregon 600 3-Inch Worldwide Handheld GPS
Navigation-Systems: Dual band GPS/GLONASS
Sensors: 3 axis compass, accelerometer, barometric altimeter)
Connectivity: ANT or Bluetooth technology
Battery Average Life: 16 hours
Display Size: 3 in
Weight: 7.4 ounces
Dimensions: 4.5 x 1.3 x 2.4 inch
The Oregon 600 is a useful piece of a survival kit for hikers, hunters, rescue workers, and campers. It comes with GPS and GLONASS support.
It comes with a dual battery system. You can use either rechargeable NiMH pack or traditional AA batteries. Moreover, its BaseCamp-software allows you to display TOPO data either in 2D or 3D and download satellite imagery with a 1-year subscription to BirdsEye.
This model features an in-built electronic compass and accelerometer tilt compensation. Also, you can share your routes, waypoints, tracks, and geocaches.
- It is light-in-weight and portable.
- It allows using third-party maps.
- You can auto-switch between landscape and portrait views.
- It can be clipped to the D-clip on your tactical pants.
- It doesn’t support an external speed-sensor.
9. Bushnell Bear Grylls Edition BackTrack D-Tour Personal GPS Tracking Device
Logs: up to 48 hours of trip data
Power Source: 3-AAA batteries
Weight: 4 ounces
Display Size: 2
Battery-Life: 16 hours
Screen: Grayscale LCD Screen
This Bear Grylls Edition GPS is easy to use. You just have to push a button and follow the arrow. It lets you mark and finds anything you want from a car in a parking lot to the tracks or a tree stand that you used to view to get to your target.
It comes with an accurate digital compass with longitude and latitude. This makes it easy to track the course by recording several details such as temperature, recording-time, speed, trip length, and many more.
This Bushnell GPS lets you mark and store as many as five locations on the GPS and 48 hours worth of data. If you’re going out on a hunting or fishing, you can use the D-Tour to navigate and mark your favorite spots.
The best part of this handheld GPS is that it allows you to share your information via social media or email. You can store it into your PC and use it whenever you want.
- It comes Breadcrumbs option that records your exact route and creates a map.
- These hunting GPS units work on runs on Windows (XP SP1 or later) and Mac (10.4.9 or later).
- It easily fits in a pocket.
- It offers long battery life.
- It is ideal for hunting and fishing.
- It has a low storage capacity.
10. Garmin Oregon 700 Handheld GPS
Display: 3-Inch sunlight-readable
Navigation System: Dualband GPS/GLONASS
Display resolution: 240 x 400 pixels
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and ANT+
This new model of Oregon comes with a 3-inch touch screen that is easy-to-read in sunlight. It has an ergonomic, rugged design that resists dirt, and humidity.
It comes with the multi-activity menu interface, including climb, hike, hunt, bike, geocache, and more. This unit features an ABS sensors 3-axis electronic compass with accelerometer and barometric altimeter sensors.
Furthermore, it has Bluetooth enabled smart notifications and automatic uploads to Garmin Connect online community.
- It comes with dual-orientation, i.e., portrait and landscape.
- It is accurate and has a user-friendly interface.
- Its build-quality is excellent.
- It has multilink-wireless connectivity.
- It has a low battery life.
How To Choose The Best Hunting GPS?
GPS stands for Global Positioning System. It is a military network developed by the United States, but it declassified so civilians can use it as well.
Russian Federation developed its version of a GPS network known as GLONASS. It stands for Global Navigation Satellite System. It was a military project that can now be used by civilians. Therefore many GPS receivers can connect to GLONASS as a supplement.
When a device receives info from more satellites, it increases the accuracy and speed of the location fixing. However, operating the device on two networks drain the battery.
A hunting GPS requires at least one aerial to receive radio transmissions from the satellite. The larger GPS unit has a larger-antenna and thus improves signal reception quality and locks your position faster.
The handheld GPS comes with its own mapping software. Check all specifications and capabilities of the software. For instance, will this software enable you to share the routes or waypoints via Google earth? Will, it gives a feature to utilizes social networks.
Also, check whether the software is compatible with your device. There is only a limited number of GPS software that works with Mac OS X. If this is your requirement, then start browsing for the Garmin unit as it is Mac compatible.
Hunting GPS can calculate your location, altitude, heading, and display the information on the map that you can map around to get a better view of the surrounding area.
On the other side, hunting GPS without a display offers a better battery life while being less chance to damage.
Look for a waterproof unit that is also resistant to dust and bumps. Also, many models are made of plastic that is also the right choice as it’s built to last and can withstand the elements. Hunting GPS with rubber armor gives much more protection against falls.
If you need better accuracy, you need a hunting GPS with a built-in atmospheric sensor. A physical compass in the model is more accurate than a digital compass. Modern units also have a barometric altimeter that makes your device the ability to make specific weather predictions.
Number of Maps
A Hunting GPS that comes with a higher number of maps are more convenient than others. Also, updating the maps is very crucial regardless of whether you want to buy the maps from the manufacturer or not. Updating the maps is a crucial task whether you want to buy the maps from the manufacturer or not.
If you don’t use a trail in the forests for many years and forget to update your device, you might be in a problem. However, paying some bucks per year for a map subscription may be the right option for some users.
Nowadays, many websites provide maps and satellite imagery for free. You can download high-quality imagery and free-spatial data from these sites. The two popular sites are the US National Agricultural Imagery program and the US Geological Survey’s seamless Data Wearhouse.
Ease of use
The looks and functions of handheld GPS are limited compared to GPS for driving. For ease of use, look at details such as screen type and button configuration. Almost the majority of handheld models feature buttons, but some advanced modern GPS has a touchscreen.
Some Garmin models are worthy if you are interested in the idea of the touchscreen. And some models come with large keyboards instead of the circular button menu. Several hunters find it easier to use a device that comes with a large screen and thus displays a larger picture.
When the device continuously receiving data from two or more satellites and calculates the position based on that data drains the battery quickly.
Usually, handheld GPS receivers claim a battery life of about 16 hours in the tracks. Therefore careful battery management can extend the battery-life.
Accessories and Extras
Some standard accessories that are included in the package are rechargeable batteries, carrying case, USB cables, and mounts.
Moreover, most Garmin GPS receivers give a one-year subscription to the BirdEye satellite image database.
Some advanced models also include a high-resolution camera, LED flashlight, and capable of syncing with other devices.
Applications of Handheld GPS
Tramping and Hunting
If you need a GPS for hunting, you’ll have a surprise of realizing that some models are specially designed for this purpose. These units are lightweight, compact, and boast great battery life.
The Non-mapping models are inexpensive compared to the ones that have street-maps.
Geocaching is an outdoor adventure in which participants use the Geocaching app or a device to navigate hidden containers called geocaches.
It is commonly used for street driving and 4WD. This GPS model is used in cars, and it is heftier and larger dimensions. These units aren’t waterproof and only fit for urban navigation.
Another task that can be done with GPS is biking. It is installed at the handle-bar mount. Therefore, keep in mind when purchasing GPS that it can withstand a high amount of vibrations.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why use GPS instead of a smartphone app?
Smartphones also have a GPS receiver and can display maps. However, mobile phones are not designed for hardcore outdoor GPS use. Also, there is a chance of a cracking screen and a low battery. A mobile phone is useful in survival situations for communication, not for navigation.
Moreover, the handheld GPS receiver has better satellite antennas and better reception. It is more accurate, and you can use it anywhere in the world without looking for a cellphone signal.
2. What information does a GPS give you?
- Location in coordinates.
3. Why hunters need a GPS navigator?
Investing in the best hunting GPS is a step ahead of a successful day in the bushes.
It helps you to pre-plan your routes and trace your route back to your home.