Gear Review – Suunto GPS Watch, AMBIT 3 VERTICAL
If you’re a skier or snowboarder with a craving for data and a penchant for backcountry skiing/snowboarding, then the Suunto Ambit 3 Vertical is probably the watch for you. The brand new addition to the Suunto Ambit 3 family measures everything from altitude and GPS location (which can also be marked) to the amount of vertical gain, speed and heart rate (when wearing the heart rate monitor). We trialled the watch over a month in Japan and while it’s quite bulky on the wrist we were very impressed with its functionality and ability to track quite accurately our ascent and descent as we slayed pristine Japanese powder around the Nagano prefecture.
For Skiers & Snowboarders:
The Ambit 3 Vertical like most smart GPS watches these days needs to be charged on a semi-regular basis, of course dependent on use, but with 100 hours of battery life it proved pretty long-lasting even when in full flight on skiing/snowboarding mode (where its tracking ascent and descent). One of the other fun little aspects of the watch are it’s ability to track real-time altitude, however be warned if you tell your mates they’ll constantly keep asking “what’s our altitude now?” as you make your way up the hill.
Other than being a keen snowboarder I’m also a keen runner and the Ambit 3 Vertical was also put to good use around the running track before and after the snow trip – and as far as GPS running watches go, its a keeper. The watch effortlessly tracks your kilometres as you run, your speed and of additionally gives you time splits for each kilometre so you can monitor your pace and performance. Wearing the heart rate monitor provides further information including calories burnt, heart rate and recovery time, which is quite useful.
As far as GPS watches go, the Suunto Ambit 3 Vertical is a top notch product with more functionality than you can poke a stick at and receives three thumbs up from Snow Travel, but the price could be out of reach for many at A$629. Available at stores below: