10 Best Geocaching GPS Systems – Our Unbiased Reviews &Buying Guide

When it comes to geocaching, you don’t need the most expensive GPS system available. Just a simple platform that you can conveniently use to enter waypoints would suffice. However, even a cheap geocaching device should at least meet the following three requirements:

  • Durable & Waterproof
  • Easy to use
  • Portable

Best Geocaching GPS - Reviews

1. Garmin-GPSMAP 64 GPS GLONASS Receiver 010-01199-00 Worldwide

The Garmin-GPSMAP 64 GPS is a base model. Its external antenna is compatible with GPS satellites, GLONASS satellite, and quad helix. The GLONASS satellite enhances the speed of locating positions by about 20% while the quad helix facilitates superior reception.

It also has an electronic compass which helps in accurate position detection. In addition to that, the unit has smartphone connectivity which enables you to receive notifications and LiveTrack. The unit can be paired with ANT+ sensors.

It supports BirdsEye Satellite imagery which, however, requires a subscription. What’s more, it has a barometric altimeter which is used for monitoring the weather.

It features a color display screen of 2.6". The screen is readable in bright sunlight.

Besides that, the unit comes preloaded worldwide basecamp maps, geocaches, and shaded topography.

As for powering of the device, it has a dual battery system, you can use the included rechargeable battery or use two traditional AA batteries. The AA batteries give you a backup powering plan.

Another significant feature of this device is its internal memory of 4GB which is sufficient for storing a substantial amount of data, in addition to that it has a micro SD card slot.

Pros

  • Color display
  • Readable screen in bright sunlight
  • Dual battery system
  • 4GB  internal memory with micro SD card slot

Cons

  • You have to subscribe to the BirdsEye Satellite imagery
  • The screen size is a little bit small

2. Garmin-Oregon 650t  GPS3-Inch Handheld 8MP Digital Camera US Topographic Maps

This is a perfect device if you want to document your adventures while you are away and also if you want to stay in touch with your social network. This unit uses GPS and GLONASS satellite for accurate and fast positioning.

It has various sensors namely barometric altimeter, accelerometer, and 3-axis compass which provide different functions.

It's size is small enough making it a handheld gps device that is easy to carry around.

The unit features a touchscreen display that is 3 inches which is a substantial size. The screen is compatible with many types of gloves making it easy to use during the winter. The screen is also sunlight readable.

You can share geocaches, waypoints, tracks and routes saved on this unit with other compatible devices. Moreover, this GPS comes with preloaded USA topo maps, and that is not all, it is quite easy to add more maps to the unit. Just as importantly it has a microSD card slot for additional memory.

In addition to that, it has an 8MP digital camera for photograph taking. Besides, the photographs are geotagged with the location where the picture was taken.

To top it all up, it has a dual battery system which means that you can use the included rechargeable batteries and or traditional AA batteries. The rechargeable battery has an average running time of 16 hours.

Pros

  • 8MP inbuilt digital camera
  • Touchscreen display
  • It is sunlight readable
  • Dual battery system
  • preloaded USA topo maps

Cons

  • It is pricey

3. Garmin-eTrex10 GPS

The Garmin-eTrex10 GPS is a budget-friendly device which enables you to stay in touch while you are having fun.The high sensitivity device has a WAAS-enabled GPS receiver, HofFix satellite, and GLONASS satellite. You can, therefore, use the device to locate positions accurately.

It is preloaded with a basemap of the whole world. The basemap gives data about areas you are about to navigate for example the type of vegetation in different areas.You can also use the device to monitor the weather by measuring the air pressure and altitude.

However, you cannot download additional maps on this device.

Additionally, you can use it to store waypoints like starting and finishing points.Apart from that, it has paperless geocaching.

It is handheld bringing with it convenience. The unit has a 2.2-inch monochrome display which unfortunately is a bit small in comparison to other brands.

Besides that, it has IPX7 waterproof standards which protect the device against splashes and rain.

Although it is powered by only AA batteries, the good thing is that batteries last up to 25hours.

Pros

  • It is inexpensive
  • GPS and GLONASS
  • Excellent geocaching feature
  • It is small, handheld and portable
  • It is waterproof
  • Preloaded worldwide basemap
  • Paperless geocaching
  • 25 hour AA battery life

Cons

  • The screen size is small
  • Monochrome display

4. Garmin-eTrex 30x, Handheld GPS Navigator Enhanced Memory 3-axis Compass Color Display

The Garmin-eTrex 30x is an upgrade from the Garmin’s eTrex 30. The enhanced features include screen resolution and an increased internal memory capacity. You can use this device to share data with other compatible devices like routes, tracks, waypoints among others.

It is an easy to use device that is durably constructed and comes at a moderate price point.

 It is constructed with a 2.2-inch color display which provides good views but it is small in comparison with other brands. It is sunlight readable and it has a resolution of 240 by 320 pixels.

The unit comes preloaded with a worldwide basemap. It has built-in sensors including a barometric altimeter and an electronic compass.

Its internal memory capacity of 3.7 GB is large and sufficient for storing data. Apart from the internal memory, you can use a microSD card slot to increase the memory capacity. Therefore you can load a ton of data and use various software including BirdsEye Satellite Imagery, BlueChart g2, HuntView among others.

The advantage of this unit is that it has a moderate price point.

Pros

  • It is an improved version of eTrex 30
  • Wireless sharing of data
  • Color display
  • The screen is sunlight readable
  • Preloaded with worldwide basemap
  • Large memory plus microSD card slot

Cons

  • There are GPSs in the market with larger screens than what this unit has
  • Small screen

5. Garmin-inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator 

The Garmin-inReach Explorer+ is an advanced GPS system that has a GPS, a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) and a Satellite phone. This is a very essential GPS unit if you are adventuring into a somewhat risky and unknown journey. The good thing is that you can decide to use the subscription when there is need.

Using this unit, you can share your location with someone else who can keep up with you during a trip. You can use the device to send texts to search and rescue monitoring centers 24/7. In addition, it can be connected to a global Iridium satellite coverage for two-way texting from anywhere globally, all you need is to subscribe to this service.

The device has an IPX7 waterproof. Just as importantly, it is powered using rechargeable batteries.

Its other important highlight includes having the Explorer + package for pre-loaded DeLorme topographic maps. You also get an accelerometer, altimeter, barometer which among other functions can be used for creating historical data tour statistics. The unit also provides detailed weather reports.

You can connect the unit to a smartphone and pair it with Bluetooth to access most of the features.

Pros

  •  Global Iridium Satellite subscription plan for global communication services
  • Connection to 24/7 rescue services
  • Real-time updates including weather reports
  • IPX7 waterproof
  • DeLorme preloaded TOPO maps
  • It is a handheld unit

Cons

  • It is a bit expensive
  • You need to incur an extra subscription fee to access most of the advanced real-time features

6. Garmin-eTrex 20x, Handheld GPS Navigator, 2.2-inch Color Display

The Garmin-eTrex 20x is a simple GPS offering basic functions. it is an upgrade from the Garmin eTrex 20. Its screen is more enhanced and it has a bigger memory capacity for holding more maps.

The good thing is that it comes at a low price point.

It has more features than the Garmin eTrex 10 because you can download maps on this unit.

The main feature of this GPS gadget is its high sensitivity which makes it accurate in providing location data. It is an excellent route finder because it is compatible with Wide Angle Augmentation System (WAAS,) with GLONASS  satellite and HotFix. It locates the position fast and maintains it.

Its other key highlights include a 3.7GB of internal memory which allows you to load more maps, above that, it has a MicroSD card slot. You can load different types of maps including BirdsEye Satellite Imagery even though a subscription is required for this, HuntView, TOPO 24K among others.

Furthermore, it has a 2.2 inches sunlight readable screen.

As for power, its battery life is 25 hours. What’s more, it is waterproof.

Pros

  • It is affordable
  • Sufficient memory space
  • Sunlight readable
  • It is waterproof
  • It provides accurate location details for route finding and tracking

Cons

  • Small screen size
  • No touchscreen
  • It doesn’t have a barometric altimeter or 3-axis compass

7. Garmin-eTrex H Handheld GPS Navigator

The Garmin-eTrex H is for those on a budget and is able to do with minimum features in a GPS unit.It is a WAAS-enabled GPS that has high sensitivity that provides accuracy of location within a 12m distance.You can bank on the unit’s high sensitivity to provide accurate positions fast and maintain it even in areas with deep canyons or heavy cover.

This device is capable of storing up to 20 routes and 500 waypoints. The GPS is designed to provide basic information including sunset information, sunrise information and hunting and fishing times.

It is quite a simple unit to operate using five buttons. However, because of the lack of base maps, it requires a seasoned explorer. It is a lightweight GPS making it easy to be handheld. It features a monochrome LCD that is 2.1 inches with bright backlighting. Noteworthy, the screen size is small.

It is designed with waterproof features for durability.The unit can be connected to a PC for enhanced views.The unit is powered by two AA batteries that can last for up to 17hours.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • One year warranty
  • High sensitivity thanks to a WAAS enabled GPS
  • It is handheld, lightweight and convenient to carry
  • Easy to operate
  • PC connection is possible using a serial port

Cons

  • No base maps
  • Monochrome LCD
  • Small screen

8. Garmin epix- 010-01247-00

The Garmin epix is a wrist-based sport watch with GPS mapping features. It is an incredible device that is very portable and it doesn’t feel bulky when worn. In addition, it has a high-resolution touchscreen color displayand backlights for viewing in bright sunlight. A touchscreen makes zooming easy.Other features on the device are button operated, the buttons are on the side of the gadget.

Its features make it a good unit for doing various activities including mountaineering, swimming, navigation to name but some because it provides precise location positions. It has a 205 x 148-pixel resolution which is substantial for a watch.

The device uses GPS/GLONASS mapping that comes preloaded with the base map of the world. Furthermore, it has a compass, barometer, and altimeter, which helps in planning your trip by providing relevant data.

Moreover, it is water-proof upto 50 m which means that you can swim with it. The device comes preloaded with European full-color topo maps. On the downside, the screen size is small but it is not feasible to increase the screen size of a wristwatch.The unit is engineered with a memory of 8GB which is a large memory.

Please note that though there are GPS units that are very expensive, this gadget is still expensive.

Pros

  • Wrist-based GPS system
  • Colored touchscreen display
  • Large memory capacity
  • European maps
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • It is expensive

9. Magellan-eXplorist GC GPS Waterproof Geocaching

The Magellan-eXplorist GC GPS will be a great addition to your exploration devices.The unit is a handheld device with a high sensitivity signal receiver. It provides instant communication and access to preloaded geocaches. On the same note, you can add more caches by downloading the data from Geocaching. comafter connecting the device to a PC using a USB cable.

It also comes preloaded with worldwide base maps. Moreover, the device also allows you to mark waypoints which you can use later to locate a track. It provides relevant data for your exploration adventures including weather changes.

The device is designed as a paperless geocaching unit with wireless connections. The unit is waterproof which means that it can be used under any weather condition. Apart from that, it is powered by AA batteries which have a life of 18 hours, in this regard, it doesn’t use rechargeable batteries which is a disadvantage.

It packs a 2.2-inch full-color LCD display that is easy to read in direct sunlight.As far as affordability is concerned, the unit is moderately priced.

Pros

  • It has a high-sensitivity receiver
  • It is a paperless geocaching device
  • Full-color display
  • Sunlight readable screen
  • It is waterproof
  • You can mark waypoints with it
  • It is preloaded with maps

Cons

  • Small screen size in comparison to other screens that are 4.0 inches.
  • No touchscreen

10. Garmin-Montana 610 GPS Camo010-01534-01

The Garmin-Montana 610 GPS Camo is a paperless geocaching device that uses GPX files. You can use the device to upload geocaches directly from geocaching.com. The device provides information about a track including location, terrain, thedifficulty of the area among other features.

This device locates your position fast and also accurately even when you are in a remote location or near tall buildings. It is because of the GPS and GLONASS with the WAAS-enabled receiver and HotFix satellite.

Although it is an expensive purchase, you will get a one-year subscription to the Birdseye Satellite Imagery and other unique features not available in cheaper brands.

It also features barometric altimeter and a 3-axis compass which enables you to keep ahead of weather changes.

The device can be used for recording waypoints which can be tracked later. You can also share waypoints and other data with other compatible devices using wireless means.

On another note, it has a 4-inch dual-orientation touchscreen that is glove-friendly. This is a very big screen size for good views.

What’s more, the device is preloaded with 250,000 worldwide geocaches and 100k USA topo maps.

Pros

  • It is durably constructed
  • Accurate even in remote locations
  • Large screen size

Cons

  • It is pricey

Benefits of Geocaching

Geocaching GPS systems are must-have for anyone looking to make the most of their adventures at ease. As long as you have these devices with you, you have the freedom to tour the world confidently knowing that you’ll find your way around even the most complex of all routes.

Without these devices, chances are that you’d end up wasting a lot of time trying to figure out your way around water bodies. So, put otherwise, these gadgets come in handy in helping you make the most of the time available in your hands.

Yet another awesome benefit of geocaching GPS is that they are meant to be highly durable. As such, they provide great companionship no matter the season or terrain.

Factors to Consider When Choosing One

What are the key factors one should pay attention to when making a choice? Well, the best way to make an informed decision is by paying close attention to the following key points.

Power Matters

Since outdoor GPS systems are meant to be used in places far away from the power grid, they need to have the best batteries available. One thing you need to note is that some come with rechargeable batteries while others use replaceable ones.

Both choices can be good and, therefore, the best kind of battery to choose is ultimately the one that’s convenient for you. Also, the best kind of battery to settle for is one capable of retaining power for long hours.

Build Quality

The kinds of conditions that geocaching GPS devices are used in are quite perilous. Therefore, you need to invest in a unit that can be pushed to the limits without failing you.

With that said, the cover should ideally be waterproof so that your device can withstand accidental water splashes and even immersion.

Also, it’s worth appreciating the fact that these screens are meant for outdoor use and might not be highly visible under the direct glare of the sun. To avoid this issue, make sure that the unit you settle for has a backlit screen.

That way, you can still keep track of the important graphics and interpret them even in times of the day when it’d be ordinarily difficult to do so on a cheap screen.

Base Map

When it comes to base maps, the more the merrier. Ideally, you should go for a unit that has maps pertaining to the entire surface of the earth. Such maps can come in handy in helping you navigate all waterbodies on the face of the earth.

As such, you’d have the confidence to even chart uncharted territory. And that, of course, would leave you with greater navigational confidence.

Memory

You need a generous internal memory to load all your maps and waypoints. One thing you need to know, however, is that the more detailed a map is, the more space it takes up in the memory. So, it is important to go for the largest memory space available and more so the possibility to add external storage should always be cherished.

The Channels

It’s the job of the channels to provide you with access to the satellite signal. The minimum number of channels you should settle for is 10. Also, geocaching GPS systems made after the year 1997 tend to be better than those made earlier.

So, as far as channels are concerned, the rules are simple – the more the merrier, the newer, the better.

Which One Is The Best?

It’s not easy to decide which geocaching GPS is actually the best considering the sheer variety we have reviewed. However, if we were to pick just one of them, we’d go with the Garmin 650t Oregon Handheld GPS. It has a generous 4GB internal storage along with a slot for microSD card usage.

We find it quite well-made plus it has high-quality maps and its screen is touch-sensitive. What more can an angler ask for?

Unfortunately, this system doesn’t come cheaply. But in terms of value, we think that it offers a pretty good bargain.

Final Thoughts

Before you head out into the oceans and lakes, ask yourself – do I have a well-made geocaching GPS system with me? Only when you are confident about your next trip and the ability to complete it without any major qualms can you enjoy every moment of it. So, grab yourself one of these and happy fishing!

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