Show us your GPS and/or Compass!

Thought it would be fun to start an ongoing thread to see what other folks are using for navigation. :D

Ditched the fancy stuff here and went back to a simple GPS unit, a Garmin eTrex 10. Only has a black & white screen and no expandable memory, but locks onto satellites (including Russia's GLONASS) like a magnet and has an amazing battery life. Found that having a smartphone around meant I wasn't using a GPS nearly as much as I used to. This should be plenty good enough for basic land navigation and occasional geocaching.


Staff member
Charter Member
I definitely want to get involved with geocaching. I was pretty good with a compass in my Marine Corp days. Would enjoy trying my hand with a dedicated GPS like the Garmin eTrex.
Yeah, geocaching can be a lot of fun. Especially the larger caches which are typically in ammo cans or big tupperware containers, and hidden in the woods. I think they're up to over 2 million total caches worldwide now, or some crazy number like that. Then there's also Terracaching, which is a similar idea (but more focused more on the outdoors & hiking), and even Opencaching (run exclusively by Garmin, not nearly as many caches).

If you have an REI nearby, they are closing out some of the older eTrex versions (10/20/30) right now. I believe the sale is online, too. Garmin is supposed to be coming out with newer eTrex models (including a touch screen version) soon, so that's probably the reason for the clearance.

The downside to a model like the eTrex 10 is no mapping and limited memory, which can be handy when caching. But if you're not a power user, it works just fine, and has the latest & greatest GPS signal receiver inside. Will get you from Point A to Point B no problem.


into the wild i go, let fortune assist the daring
Staff member
Global Mod
I also have an etrex, bit I always end up using my phone for GPS. I use an app called BackCountry Navigator. It is amazing. I paid for the full version and have purchased BLM Boundary overlays along with the yearly Accuterra subscription. Its a must have tool for all the backcountry travels. To play it safe though, I always carry a physical Topo/compass

Had a nice Garmin 60Cx map, a great GPS for what I did with it but was stupid enough to put Duracell's in it and now I don't have no GPS anymore (working that is). Can actually change it with a refurbished one for 75,- euro, seems that leaking Duracell's are quite common but think I'll rather buy a new and more simple one some day.

So I now even have GPS on my camera (Nikkon AW100) thou these are not really close to comparable with a real GPS but I'm still not in a hurry, can get everywhere the old-fashion way just fine. Have several compasses, favorite is the Recta DP2 I've owned since .....well, a long time.


EDC Grand Master
We did a lot of land nav training when I was in CAP. Mine was one of the best trained squadrons in the state if not the country. The Camenga isn't the one I used back then but it's nearly identical. I used to keep that in a pouch attached and dummy corded to the shoulder loop on my web gear suspenders.

The Garmin eTrex I never use anymore. I've taken favor to my phone for GPS. The eTrex is not sensitive enough. If you get under tree cover in the summer it struggles to find sat signals. We were trained in GPS back in the early 90's before anyone had heard of it.

The map compass is a cheapy from Wal-Farts but it works.



EDC Journeyman
I've had a Garmin 60csx for almost a decade, which I love, but in an effort to reduce/consolidate my EDC carry, I've been moving over to just using my iPhone/iPad with pre-downloaded maps. There used to be a time when you had jump through hoops to get the iProducts to work as a stand-alone GPS without cell service, but now with hardware and IOS changes, it's nearly as seamless as the Garmin now, and a lot easier when traveling out of the US (not worth buying/loading the extra Garmin maps for me).

Battery efficiency is better on the Garmin, but I find I really don't need to run the phone/tablet GPS much, other than just to spot check current position against a pre-downloaded or paper map, and perhaps to navigate the last few miles to a destination while driving. I finally started EDCing a small powerbank anyway.
I have some very small button compasses that are only usable as a gimmick, or as a backup if everything else fails.
Then I have a Kasper&Richter Alpin compass.
And a Garmin etrex 30 that I bought for geocaching before getting a better phone. Now I don’t use it often, but when I want to keep my phone safe. It’s more rugged, waterproof and cheaper than an iPhone 6s. ;) The maps on it are from and are based on openstreetmap. They have lots of detail and are good for geocaching.