Gear Shed

Q:

Is there a sleek watch with loads of ski features out there?

I'm looking for a watch for my husband that offers ski features, such as number of runs, speed, vertical for individual runs, and total vertical. Measuring distances would be good, too, as he is also a runner. I'm willing to spend up to $500 and would like it to look good (maybe something in titanium). Debbie New York, New York

X10 Watch     Photo: courtesy, Suunto

Suunto X10 Watch

X10 Watch

A:What you probably want is one of the new Suunto X10 watches. This is sort of the ne plus ultra of current outdoor watches. It has just about everything: a GPS unit for measuring distance, altimeter, barometer, digital compass, and all the usual watch/stopwatch features. You can use it to determine your current speed, find waypoints, and record a route. And of course it counts ski runs. In fact, because the X10 is computer-enabled, you can download the day’s skiing and look at it on Google Maps.

The X10 isn’t titanium, but its case is stainless steel, and it’s waterproof to 100 feet. No, it doesn’t look like a Rolex Oyster, but I suppose it looks decent, in a techie sort of way.

The one downside is that a watch such as this requires a lot of battery maintenance. Battery life is billed at 33 hours on a single charge, but you can bet that’s under ideal conditions. It can be charged using a computer’s USB port, however, so your husband can check his data and charge it at the same time.

Retail is $600, but if you shop around you can find one for $550 or so.

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