The 8 Best Altimeter Watches

Whether you are a casual hiker who just wants to know what altitude you are at, or a serious rock climber who needs to know how much more vertical feet you can climb before darkness sets in, an altimeter watch is for you.

An altimeter watch measures altitude by measuring changes in atmospheric pressure. It’s not always exact, but it usually gives you a fairly accurate reading of your altitude. We’ve compiled a list of the 8 best altimeter watches. The list of quality instruments will enhance your outdoor experience, and enhance your style to boot.

Garmin Fenix 3 GPS

This watch is the ultimate in multitasking. Whether you are going hiking, running, skiing, climbing, biking, or swimming, this watch can do it all. It can track your speed, distance, and vertical drop. This ABC (Altitude, Barometer, Compass) watch also has a GPS function, a thermometer, a heart rate monitor. It connects easily over wireless to your other electronic devices. You’ll love the battery length, which is rated to 20 hours in GPS mode and can run for 6 weeks when the Fenix is in its regular watch mode.

The watch is tough, with a stainless steel bezel and a Sapphire glass lens. It can take a pounding, but it is also stylish enough to wear into the office. And at only 2.9 ounces, this watch won’t weigh down your wrist!

Garmin Fenix 3 GPS

  • Chroma display – 1.2” sunlight-visible high-resolution color Chroma optically-bonded display.Quick fit watch band compatible: 0.8Inch(26 mm)
  • Water rating – water rated up to 10ATM/ 100 Meters1; suitable for swimming. Case Material: fiber-reinforced polymer
  • Exo antenna – Omni-directional Steel exo antenna, when paired with GLONASS and epo, provides an even faster fix and accurate position than GPS alone

Casio PRG-300-1A2CR

The Pro Trek is an affordable way to get introduced into the world of altimeter watches. Like other Casio watches, it runs on solar power so you won’t have to change the batteries or worry about losing power on a long hike. Despite the low price, you get a altimeter, compass, and a barometer, as well as a stopwatch and a thermometer. The watch functions down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit, and has four daily alarms, a stopwatch, and a countdown timer.

The Pro Trek does have a smaller display, which can make the watch features a bit hard to read sometimes. The upside to this is that the watch does not overwhelm a small wrist like many larger watches do. The watch does keep manual instead of atomic time, but that makes sense for the price point.

Casio PRG-300-1A2CR

  • Sporty solar-powered watch featuring small triple sensor (a/b/c), low-temperature resistance (14 degrees F), altimeter, digital compass, barometer, thermometer, world time, four daily alarms, 1/10-second stopwatch, countdown timer, EL backlight with afterglow, dual time formats, and power-saving function
  • 47-mm resin case with mineral dial window
  • Water resistant to 100 m (330 ft): In general, suitable for swimming and snorkeling, but not scuba diving

Suunto Core

If you don’t need a GPS or a heart rate monitor, the Suunto Core provides you with lots of functionality at a price that won’t break the bank. At the time of writing this watches MSRP is $299, making it 2-3 hundred dollars cheaper than the top of the line smart watches, but still gives you numerous features. Star with an altimeter, barometer, and compass, and add storm notifications to alert you to incoming inclement weather.

The watch senses barometric pressure drops and notifies you of a possible storm. You also get sunrise/sunset times (based on over 400 locations), and a 7-day altitude log tracking. Many users appreciate its durability and its long battery life. A battery can last about a year if the extra features are not enabled. The design is sleek, it weighs in at less than 2.3 ounces, and the watch comes in six different colors.

Suunto Core

  • Suunto Core: This classic outdoor sports watch is packed with intelligent features like a Storm Alarm, Altimeter, Barometer and compass to keep you informed of conditions while you hike, bike, or camp
  • Essential for Adventure: This watch has dual times, a date display, and alarm, plus predicted times for sunrise and sunset to help maximize your daylight hours and a depth meter accurate up to 30 feet

Suunto Ambit3

This top of the line watch earns its chops by combining a plethora of features with an easy-to-use interface. You can use the Suunto Moves count app to import waypoints and routes, or import routes from other users. Don’t worry, it has the traditional altimeter, barometer, and compass, but it does not stop there.

The watch is compatible with a heart rate monitor, and can track the important information for your workout such as duration, distance, and calories burned. Hikers will appreciate the storm alarm that will alert you to severe weather rolling in, and highly accurate elevation data. The watch is water-resistant down to 50 meters, and is protected against damage by strong Sapphire glass.

The battery life is fairly short, though; coming in at only 30 days even when you don’t use the GPS function. All in all, thought, this is an incredible watch that should enhance all of your outdoor activities.

Suunto Ambit3

  • Upload routes to your watch, and you’re ready to explore new terrains with the help of GPS and glonass Satellite navigation systems
  • Follow your Progress with distance and altitude statistics, save points of interest and re trace your steps using the breadcrumb trail
  • Barometric Trend helps predict weather changes, and storm alarm alerts you when it’s time to find shelter

Casio PRW-6000Y-1ACR

You won’t have to worry about running out of juice with this solar powered watch. The Casio 6000Y gives you an altimeter, barometer and a compass set in a modern face with a sharp looking carbon fiber insert band. The atomic clock keeps very accurate time, and you get a thermometer and stopwatch as well.

The watch has an old-school feel. Some might like this, while others might want something more modern with more features, especially at the 6000Y’s high price tag. The watch does not have a GPS feature, although it does track weather patterns and store trips. If you do decide to go with the 6000Y you will get a tough, durable watch that you can wear while on a hike and in the office.

Casio PRW-6000Y-1ACR

  • Sporty solar-powered watch featuring small triple sensor (a/b/c), low-temperature resistance (14 degrees F), altimeter, digital compass, barometer, thermometer, world time, four daily alarms, 1/10-second stopwatch, countdown timer, EL backlight with afterglow, dual time formats, and power-saving function
  • 47-mm resin case with mineral dial window
  • Quartz movement with digital display
  • Resin band with buckle closure

Suunto Traverse

If you are a hiker and want a GPS and ABC watch, but don’t want to pay the money for a Ambit3 or need all of the Ambit’s features, then you might want to check out the Suunto Traverse. It is easy to use, and has many of the same internal features as the Ambit, but does not provide functions geared toward runners, bikers, or swimmers.

You do get a great GPS, a flashlight mode, a very accurate altimeter, a barometer, and a compass. The watch also features a data log, a trip summary, and other features geared toward hikers. Battery life is a concern with this watch, as it only lasts 14 days when not using the GPS.

Suunto Traverse

  • Watch, altimeter, barometer, and compass in 1
  • Altimeter with 24-hour memory and log book
  • Bubble level for accurate compass readings
  • 3 alarms, stopwatch, and countdown timer
  • Stylish design, waterproof to 100 feet

Casio PAG240

From Pro Trek, authentic gear for the outdoor adventurer comes a new addition to the 100M water resistant PAG-240 Series. The bezel is also imprinted with directional markings to help when taking bearing measurements.

For easy viewing of Triple Sensor data such as direction, atmospheric pressure, temperature and altitude, a duplex LCD display and full auto EL backlight are employed. Self-Charging Tough Solar Power will keep this watch powered up for when ever you need it.

Casio PAG240

  • Pastic
  • 100 M Water Resistance
  • Solar Powered – Solar panel features rechargable battery with approximately 7 months on rechargeable battery (operation period with normal use without exposure to light after charge) 25 months on rechargeable battery (operation period when stored in total darkness with the power save function on after full charge) when fully charged

If you didn’t find the best Altimeter Watches you had in mind on our list, or if you’re struggling to compare the features of a few on this list, this buyer’s guide is for you.

Who are Altimeter Watches For?

If you’re an outdoor enthusiast who loves hiking, mountaineering, or climbing, an altimeter watch is an essential tool for your kit. These watches provide you with critical information like your current elevation, which can be useful for navigation, trip planning, and safety. They also offer features like barometric pressure readings, weather forecasts, and GPS tracking, making them invaluable tools for any backcountry adventure.

Features to Consider

When choosing an altimeter watch, there are several features to consider. Here are some of the most important:

  1. Accuracy: The most important feature of any altimeter watch is its accuracy. You want a watch that provides precise elevation readings, so you know your exact location and altitude.
  2. Battery Life: Altimeter watches can be power-hungry, especially if you’re using features like GPS. Look for a watch with a long battery life, so you don’t have to worry about it dying in the middle of your adventure.
  3. Durability: Your altimeter watch will likely be exposed to the elements, so it’s essential to choose a watch that’s durable and can withstand harsh conditions.
  4. User-Friendliness: Finally, you want a watch that’s easy to use and navigate, especially if you’re wearing gloves or in low-light conditions.

Our Top Pick

Casio PAG240: I have always been a fan of Casio Watches and have had several throughout my life, due to their reliability and aesthetic appearance. I had a previous model to this one, but it wasn’t Solar Powered. Setting this watch up was a doddle as I’ve had one similar. Yes it is on the big size, there again I like big chunky watches, surprisingly it is not heavy for its size. You’ll soon get used to it on your wrist. The functionality of this Watch is amazing


Whether you’re a seasoned mountaineer or just getting into hiking, an altimeter watch is a valuable tool that can enhance your outdoor experiences. By considering features like accuracy, battery life, durability, and user-friendliness, you can choose a watch that’s perfect for your needs. And with our top picks for the best altimeter watches on the market, you can be confident you’re making a wise investment in your outdoor gear.


Rick is an outdoor enthusiast with a passion for hiking, camping, and exploring the great outdoors. As a writer for OutdoorRated, Rick shares their expertise and knowledge with readers to help them make informed decisions about the gear they need for their next adventure.