Nixon Outsider ($150)
Key feature: An electronic compass.
Pros: “A watch with a compass!” says Chris. “It could come in handy for any outdoor activity or travel. The compass has an arrow that is always pointing north and tells you what direction you’re facing with the coordinates. All the functions are very user-friendly and the instructions are also super helpful.”
Cons: Chris says, “The only thing I didn’t like was that the compass feature goes into sleep mode after 30 seconds. It could get annoying, but all you have to do is push one button to get back into compass mode.”
Verdict: “A compass is definitely a backcountry essential, and this watch is easier to use and more accessible than a traditional compass. Even though it’s helpful,” says Chris, “I would not use it in place of a GPS for backcountry snowboarding, it’s a great backup, though.”