By Justin Stakes
Field review of the Suunto Traverse Alpha GPS Watch in Foliage Green.
United States -(AmmoLand.com)- With so many options for hunting and outdoor enthusiasts, finding the right all-around tool for hunting, fishing and going outdoors can become quite daunting.
Luckily the watch designers at Suunto have created a rugged smartwatch made for the likes of anyone who enjoys the great outdoors. For nearly 80 years now, Suunto has been developing navigational products designed specifically for hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation.
Handmade in Finland, the Suunto Traverse Alpha GPS Watch takes durability to a whole new level, with it’s scratch resistant sapphire crystal glass, a knurled stainless steel bezel and water repellent nylon strap. Built rugged and tested under the harshest of US military conditions (the military standard MIL-STD-819G,) the Traverse Alpha is an impeccable piece of equipment that can take a whole lot of abuse.
Suunto Traverse Alpha GPS watch offers a ton of options for hunters, fishers and outdoor enthusiasts, including such versatile outdoor functions such as the electronic compass with tilt compensation and a bread crumb trail navigational system to help while exploring through any new and unknown environments.
Perfect for a long and arduous journey, the rechargeable battery lasts for hours at full intensity with the GPS function on. During testing, the battery lasted well over 3 days while the GPS and other functions were active. The watch even produces a sound in order to alert the user of a low battery, and stays on for quite some time at a 1% charge (even at 0% charge it was still active for a couple hours), allowing the user more than enough time to trek it back to camp base to charge the device.
The device even has the ability to mark trails and specific locations using the POI (point of interest) types for hunters & anglers that would like to record their treestand or fishing locations, as well as topographic maps featuring elevation data to accurately track and record a hunter’s shot distance and elevation in order to create insightful altitude profiles and waypoints.
The sunrise and sunset alarms help anyone who wants to plan their day accordingly, whether its for fishing early in the dawn or hunting at a certain point of time.
While hunting, fishing and hiking during the night, the customizable red backlight is vibrant enough to see in the dark while not interfering with night vision.
The standard display on the face of the watch shows three different features including: the date, day of the week, and one customizable feature towards the bottom of the face. The customizable feature has a total of six different options to choose from, including: the amount of power left in the battery, the sunrise and sunset alarms, a sixty second countdown meter, the distance you have walked/jogged all day in feet metrics, the amount of steps taken throughout the day and the compass. These features are changed by simply clicking the “view” button, located directly on the left-bottom side of the watch.
The standard face display can also be changed by pressing on the “next” button located towards the right-middle button. The changes include the barometer, the compass and the step count.
The “start” button located towards the right top of the watch’s controls will take you to the interface with all of the devices main features.
The one thing I can be sure of, is the fact that this piece of equipment is well beyond any watch I’ve bought, it’s Sapphire Crystal Glass and knurled stainless steel bezel design is outstanding, withstanding every single pressure test I’ve put it through without a scratch, this watch is simply amazing and seemingly indestructible.
Suunto Traverse Alpha GPS Watch features:
- The “record” feature allows users to record the amount of time it takes for a particular job as well as how many have been caught, hunted, etc., while hunting, fishing and hiking in the wilderness.
- The “displays” feature includes a stopwatch, countdown, moonphase alerts, anti-barometer, compass and steps counter. It’s also the same area you can select which will be included in the standard display.
- The “logbook” feature displays all of the users recorded adventures while hiking, fishing and hunting.
- In order to go back a page on any of these displays, you simply press the “back lap” button on the top left or hold down the “next” button to exit.
Anglers can utilize the moonphase calendar feature; which is based off of your current location, with the moonrise and moonset times to help in determining what would be the best time for their next fishing trip.
Suunto’s online sports community; Movescount.com, allows users to communicate and share stories about their latest adventures/endeavors with one another through the online website or the App which is available on both the android and iPhone platforms. Users just simply upload their “moves” directly to their device from their Traverse Alpha with the provided cable. Basically the Movescount website and App will allow the user the full Alpha Mapping functionality. Without going online or downloading the App, there’s no way to download your local maps onto file in order to have the full mapping ability to use all of the features such as the route navigation, waypoint alerts, breadcrumb trail and so on.
The “next” button can also be held down while on the main display to enter the options feature.
The ‘light’ button can be pressed once in order to turn on the red backlight or held down to turn on the flashlight; which I wouldn’t recommend as a replacement to any light source such as a premium or tactical flashlight, to turn it off just press the light button once.
Main Features of the Suunto Traverse Alpha GPS Watch:
- Automatic shot detection (helps hunters keeps track of the number and location of shots taken during a hunt)
- A red backlight face
- GPS/GLONASS satellite systems
- Full route navigation, with waypoint approaching alerts and breadcrumb trail
- Route preview and altitude profile
- 10 hunting-specific POI types (used to mark trails and important locations)
- Location-based moon phase calendar with both moonrise and moonset times
- An alarm for Barometric pressure, weather trends and storms
- Customization for sunrise and sunset alerts
To say the least, the Traverse Alpha is not only one of the most comfortable watches I’ve ever had the pleasure of wearing, but it’s one of the most fully featured piece of outdoor equipment I have had my hands on and I highly recommend it to any outdoor enthusiast who’s in need of a small and powerful device such as this.
The watch is available in two distinct options: the black Traverse Alpha Stealth and the green Traverse Alpha Foliage. All Suunto watches are designed, built and tested under the strictest conditions in Finland.
The Traverse Alpha is available at hunting and fishing retailers, as well as online at suunto.com.
We found the best price on the Suunto Traverse Alpha GPS Watch in Foliage Green online at Amazon : http://tiny.cc/osk9cy ~ AmmoLand
Article by Justin Stakes
**Copyright @ J. Stakes Photography
About the Author:
Justin Stakes is a Photographer and Journalist dealing with a variety of different subjects that interest and inspire his love for the great outdoors and more. Justin is an avid outdoor enthusiast and geek with a photographic style that is a mixture of photojournalism and fine art. He has won 3 Photo Show Competitions throughout his education and has even been exhibited in the Wignall Museum of Contemporary Art.