The 5 Best GPS for Geocaching Reviewed
Geocaching has become one of the most popular sporting activities for hiking enthusiasts and families that love being outside. One of the great things about the outdoor treasure hunt is that you do not need to rely on lots of technology. However, you will need one gadget: the best GPS for geocaching.
Finding the best GPS for geocaching will undoubtedly enhance your experiences. Whether you’re a casual geocacher or a regular explorer, the right device should provide the reliability and function needed to deliver hours of fun either alone or with friends and family. Ultimately, no two people are identical, which is why you need to consider the dimension, tech attributes, special features, and cost before choosing your device.
While the growing marketplace is now blessed with many good GPS devices with geocaching capabilities, some stand out more than others. Here are five of the best for 2021 and beyond.
Best GPS for Geocaching
The Garmin Montana 680t navigator is an all-in-one 4” touchscreen device that additionally features an 8MP camera, bird’s eye view capabilities and the option to view over a quarter-million preloaded geocaches. Those features already make it one of the best GPS for geocaching devices on the market. However, its paperless tech, which puts an end to manually entering coordinates truly makes it stand out from the crowd.
There’s a lot to love about this handheld device, not least because it has the versatility to deliver years of enjoyment for every explorer from novices to pros. The trip-planning features, which also allow you to see topography in 2D or 3D mode, highlights the wide range of possibilities to perfection.
Aside from the user-friendly interface of a decent-sized touchscreen, the Garmin Montana 680t is highly regarded for being one of the fastest devices for locking onto cache targets. Even from a cold start, you can expect to start your adventures within seconds. Moreover, the aforementioned built-in camera means you can capture photos that can be stored alongside the other data via those paperless management tools.
While some devices may have an even longer battery life, the Montana 360t will keep you connected to a world of caching adventures for a whole weekend. Thanks to the track-back feature, getting back to camp is an easy task too. Moreover, the selection of optional databases means you’ll be finding new and exciting features for many years to come.
In addition to its main function of being a great GPS for geocaching, the device can be used for standard hiking, biking, off-roading, and more. As such, it is one of the most popular solutions on the market.
- SEE YOUR SURROUNDINGS - Includes a 1-year Birdseye Satellite Imagery subscription1
- GPS AND GLONASS - With its high-sensitivity, WAAS-enabled GPS receiver, Hotfix satellite prediction and GLONASS support, Montana locates your position quickly and precisely and maintains its location even in heavy cover and deep canyons
- TRACK MANAGER - Ability to organize and navigate through waypoints/routes/track logs (easily start/stop recording track logs)
- CAPTURE THE MOMENT - 8 megapixel digital camera for higher quality images and better resolution; geotagged with coordinates automatically, allowing you to
When simplicity and reliability are the main attributes that you crave, the Garmin eTrex 30x is a budget-friendly handheld GPS that’s perfect for geocaching activities. The wireless technology, simple display, and side-mounted buttons make it a particularly good option for anyone who isn’t particularly tech-savvy. Similarly, it is perfect for anyone seeking an easy solution for when they are hoping to reconnect with nature.
The eTrex 30x is a simple yet sophisticated GPs featuring a 2.2” display that provides the information you actually need. Speed, direction, and the distance to the next target are all included. Meanwhile, the lightweight device can easily be carried by hand or in your pocket with ease.
It’s preloaded with thousands of maps and has the capacity to download many more. Meanwhile, the location, terrain, difficulty, hints and description data recording features remove the need for manual input. So, you can spend more time actually looking for the next geocache on your map.
The GPS for geocaching offers exceptionally quick responses and will lock onto satellites within a few seconds while it can also reach GLONASS satellites for global usage. Changing maps, selecting fields, and updating settings is easy to do with the simple controls. The only real downside is that the USB is slow for transfers when you connect to download data.
Nonetheless, that’s a small price to pay, especially when the handheld device can provide hours of fun. In fact, the simplicity of the screen means that it has one of the best battery life ratings on the market.
- UPGRADED DISPLAY Features a 2.2” 65K color sunglight readable display offering increased resolution (240 x 320 pixels). Physical dimensions: 2.1" x 4.0" x 1.3" (5.4 x 10.3 x 3.3 cm)
- LOAD MORE MAPS Large 3.7 GB of internal memory and microSD card slot lets you load a variety of maps, including TOPO 24K, HuntView, BlueChart g2, City Navigator NT and BirdsEye Satellite Imagery (subscription required)
- PRELOADED BASEMAP Includes a worldwide basemap with shaded relief
- BUILT IN SENSORS eTrex 30x adds a built in 3 axis tilt compensated electronic compass and a barometric altimeter which tracks changes in pressure to pinpoint your precise altitude, and you even can use it to plot barometric pressure over time
- WIRELESS Wirelessly share your waypoints, tracks, routes and geocaches with other compatible devices simply press “send” to transfer your information also wirelessly connects to compatible Garmin devices, including VIRB and accessory sensors
The Garmin GPSMAP 64sx looks exactly like you’d expect a GPS for geocaching to appear. Its durable and waterproof casing, 2.6” screen, and buttons under the screen make it an accessible option for users of all tech levels. Meanwhile, it shows all major off-road trails on its preloaded topography maps, which makes it ideal for geocachers of all experienced levels and is one of the best kid-friendly options available.
Automated tracking of key data will allow you to retrace your steps and keep track of progress with ease. Crucially, the navigation features make it easy to stay on track during your expedition. The screen also boasts impressive anti-glare features as well as multiple brightness settings to further combat potential issues.
The covered antenna ensures that the GPSMAP 64sx can lock onto targets with rapid results. Crucially, it retains a stable connection throughout, allowing you to focus on enjoying the sport of geocaching without wasting valuable minutes waiting for a reliable link to return. The device doesn’t drain the batteries either, enabling you to keep the fun lasting for several hours at a time.
Smart technology allows you to send text messages to other members of your party, with notifications showing clearly. This feature makes it a particularly popular option for parents who need to stay in touch with their kids throughout the outdoor activities. This series of devices also allows for points, routes, and favorite caches to be shared with friends.
The preloaded maps are a little limited but the GPX files can be downloaded in preparation of your trip. Once this has been done, you will be set for incredible geocaching adventures. You can use the GPS for a host of additionally trekking activities too.
- Rugged and water-resistant design with button operation and a 2. 6” sunlight-readable color display
- Preloaded with Topo Active maps (U. S. and Australia only) featuring routable roads and trails for cycling and hiking
- Know where you’re at with a high-sensitivity receiver with quad helix antenna and multi-GNSS support (GPS, GLONASS and Galileo) and 3-axis compass with barometric altimeter
- Wireless connectivity via BLUETOOTH technology and ANT+ technology available on GPSMAP 64sx and GPSMAP 64csx models
- Battery life: up to 16 hours in GPS mode
Like the sx, the Garmin GPSMAP 64 is a versatile option that suits a wide range of geocaching activities. This is underlined by the fact you can order the unit as a base model or with the addition of an antenna and Bluetooth as well as US topography maps. It’s a great option for kids and adults alike, not least because information is presented in a clear fashion while the battery lasts a long time too.
The black and yellow housing gives the GPSMAP 64 a pretty cool appearance while the 2.6” display offers easy visibility in all lighting conditions. The buttons make it easy to scroll through geocaching challenges while information on difficult and expected durations are clear to see. The unit can easily be hooked to clothing or carried by hand.
It looks like a simple gadget, but it boasts the majority of features that you could ask for. As well as GPS maps and navigational features, the ability to download geotagged photos is highly impressive. A lack of messaging may be an issue for some families, although most users will have other forms of communication. As for the device itself, scrolling through the menus and understanding the data could not be easier.
The GPSMAP 64 will also record the full details of your trek. Its reliability is of a very high standard too, especially when the Bluetooth antenna is added. Signals are established very quickly and do not tend to get lost. Aside from making geocaching activities feel more enjoyable, it means that you can review your activities.
For challenging off-road geocaching, the Garmin GPSMAP 64 is one of the most popular solutions on the market, it’s rugged, simple, and can handle tough challenges. Its access to good digital mapping and optional subscription services ensure the fun never ends.
- Sunlight-Readable 2.6" color display
- Expanded Internal Memory 4GB
- DUAL BATTERY SYSTEM Use with 2 traditional AA batteries, or the optional rechargeable NiMH battery pack that can be charged while inside the device.Weight 8.1 oz (230 g) with batteries
- Receive Smart Notifications* and pair with optional ANT+ sensors, such as heart rate monitor, Tempe temperature sensor, speed/cadence, or use to control your VIRB action camera (64s/64st only)
- Wirelessly upload data to Garmin Connect and view on smartphone, plus share activities as they happen with Live Track (64s/64st only)
When you want a budget-friendly GPS for geocaching that allows you to enjoy the adventures without being overawed by digital tech, the Garmin eTrex 10 is ideal. The yellow and black handheld device shows data and maps via a monochromatic 2.2” screen, delivering a compact, simplistic, and budget-friendly solution that can be enjoyed by all.
After all, you can still enjoy a large selection of maps, especially when you download them ahead of your trip. Moreover, the device will record up to 200 tracks. Above all else, the device is functional. You can simply leave a mark of where your camp, base, or starting point is located. Then download a geocaching activity and begin the adventure.
Most users will use this device with traditional navigational tools, making it the best GPS for geocaching gadget for those that want to get back to the basics of an analog system. Due to its low-tech features, the device can last all weekend with ease. The housing allows you to connect it to your bag, although the compact size makes it ideal for handheld use too. However, most use it for basic guidance only.
While the eTrex 10 doesn’t take photos or even use photo caches, it allows you to log and view logs with ease. Most importantly, the coverage it provides is fantastic. In addition to the strong signal, the parts are very durable, meaning those features will last for many years to come.
There are far more complex models on the market, but the simple eTrex 10 is easily the best for what it sets out to achieve. It has enjoyed a spike in popularity over the past couple of years and it’s not hard to see why.
- Rugged handheld navigator with preloaded worldwide basemap and 2.2 inch monochrome display
- WAAS enabled GPS receiver with HotFix and GLONASS support for fast positioning and a reliable signal
- Waterproof to IPX7 standards for protection against splashes, rain, etc.
- Support for paperless geocaching and Garmin spine mounting accessories. Power with two AA batteries for up to 20 hours of use (best with Polaroid AA batteries)
- See high and low elevation points or store waypoints along a track (start, finish and high/low altitude) to estimate time and distance between points
What is geocaching?
For a great overview of what geocaching is and how to get started, watch this video: