5 Best Watches For Skiing and Snowboarding 2023
You have your skis, boots, and ski goggles. Now, step it up and start tracking your skiing with a new watch. Ski watches have been around for a while, with early models including features like altimeters and compass sensors. These days, the best watches for skiing and snowboarding go way beyond those basics. Modern ski watches track your speed, distance, and vertical descent and will even map your runs. Imagine being able to track your vertical descent for the season down to the meter. Or stay safe by planning your next backcountry route and loading it on the watch to ensure you don’t get lost.
Our Top Picks
When it comes to the best ski watches, there are a few essential factors to consider. First, think about what kind of data you want to track. Another critical factor to consider is battery life. If you’re planning on spending all day on the slopes, you’ll want a watch with a long battery life that can withstand the cold temperatures of winter sports. Finally, take a look at the watch’s design. You’ll want a model that’s comfortable to wear all day and won’t get in the way of your ski gloves.
Without further ado, let’s get started!
What Are The Best Watches For Skiing and Snowboarding?
Here is our ranked and reviewed list of the best ski watches.
The 5 Best Watches For Skiing and Snowboarding
- Best Overall Ski and Snowboard Watch – Garmin Fenix 7 Pro Solar Edition
- Best Budget Ski and Snowboard Watch – Amazfit T-Rex Pro
- Best Minimalist Ski and Snowboard Watch – Garmin Instinct 2 Solar
- Best Ski Watch For Weekend Warriors – Apple Watch 7
- Best Ski Watch For Weekend Warriors Android – Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro
1) Best Overall – Ski Watch – Garmin Fenix 7 Pro Solar Edition
The Fenix 7 Solar is Garmin’s flagship solar-powered GPS multisport smartwatch. It replaces the Garmin Fenix 6 with better battery life, new training features, and a redesigned touchscreen. The solar power feature is designed to help extend the watch’s battery life even further.
The Fenix 7 Solar is a great ski and snowboard watch. It has dedicated ski and snowboard tracking modes. It also includes a pre-loaded backcountry profile that will distinguish between skiing and climbing. It shows you metrics specific to both your ascent and/or descent. Anyone using a watch in the backcountry knows finding a mode that nicely tracks uphill and down is challenging. It is pre-loaded with SkiView maps, with run names and difficulty ratings for more than 2,000 ski resorts worldwide. It has a built-in altitude, a barometer, GPS, a compass, and maps for route planning and tracking.
This full-featured watch not only tracks your activities but connects with your phone as well. Similar to other smart ski watches, it receives notifications from your phone, makes contactless payments, stores music offline has customizable watch faces and the Garmin Connect IQ App for your phone.
All these features are why the Fenix 7 is my pick for the best overall ski watch. It has a great battery life, a built-in altimeter, barometer, compass, and maps. This is one of the best sports watches for winter sports.
- Glass: Power Sapphire
- Case Size: 42mm, 47mm, 51mm
- Strap: Silicone
- Display Type: Color Touchscreen
- Weight: 79g
- Battery (Watch Mode): 18 days
- Solar Charging: Yes (Solar and Sapphire Models)
- Extended battery life and solar charging
- Rugged and durable design
- Barometer, GPS mode, and Route Tracking
- Skiing, snowboarding, and Backcountry tracking modes
- 2,000 pre-loaded ski resort maps
It is a great all-around watch with GPS, solar charging, a barometer, maps, and ski tracking modes. If you want a watch that has it all, the Fenix 7 is the watch for you.
MSRP $799.99 Check Price on Amazon
2) Best Budget Ski and Snowboard Watch – Amazfit T-Rex 2
The Amazfit T-Rex 2 is the best budget ski watch. It’s a rugged and durable smartwatch with all the features you need to track your days on the slopes. Compatible with Android and iOS devices, it has a battery life of up to 24 days. The T-Rex Pro has a built-in altimeter, barometer, compass, and GPS for accurate tracking.
It also has pre-loaded topographic maps for over 2000 ski resorts worldwide. It has 150+ sports modes, including skiing, snowboarding, and downhill skiing. The companion Zepp App on your phone analyzes health and exercise data, controls the watch features, and provides system updates for your watch. Want to hike a famous trail or follow in the footsteps of someone you know? The Route Import and Real-time Navigation will let you unleash your inner explorer and tread new ground.
Despite all the great features, the T-Rex 2 does not match the Garmin Fenix 7. It lacks storage and has less premium construction materials and fewer detailed pre-loaded maps. The Fenix 7 also supports NFC payments and also has a thermometer. Despite this, the T-Rex 2 is half the price of the Fenix 7 and still does an excellent job as an outdoor GPS tracker.
The T-Rex 2 is an excellent watch for those who want a durable and rugged smartwatch that can track their days on the slopes at a very reasonable price. It is also a fantastic watch for hikers and explorers as it has a built-in compass and barometric altimeter. The Amazfit T-Rex 2 is the best budget ski and snowboard watch.
- Glass: Glass Material
- Case Size: 47mm
- Strap: Silicon
- Display Type: AMOLED Color touchscreen
- Weight: 66.5g
- Battery (Watch Mode): 24 days
- Solar Charging: No
- Rugged and durable smartwatch
- Long battery life of up to 24 days
- Compatible with Android and iOS devices
- Pre-loaded topographic maps for over 2000 ski resorts around the world
The Amazfit T-Rex 2 is the best budget ski and snowboard watch. It’s a rugged and durable smartwatch with the features you need to track your days on the slopes. Compatible with Android and iOS devices, it has a battery life of up to 24 days.
MSRP $229.99 Check Price on Amazon
3) Best Minimalist Ski and Snowboard Watch – Garmin Instinct 2 Solar
The Garmin Instinct Solar 2 is the best minimalist ski and snowboard watch you can buy in 2022. It is rugged, feature-packed, has excellent battery life, and is affordable. The watch is available in two sizes to fit every wrist and has solar charging to extend the battery life.
If you are looking for a rugged, solar-charging GPS smart watch that is tough enough to keep up with you and unique enough to fit your style, then the Garmin Instinct Solar 2 is the best watch for you. This watch is water-rated to 100 meters and is thermal and shock resistant. Plus, this device is built to endure with a fiber-reinforced polymer case and chemically strengthened, scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass. The watch also has built-in sports apps, smart notifications, multi-GNSS support, ABC sensors, TracBack routing, and a GPS tracker.
Do what you love with preloaded activity profiles for running, cycling, swimming, strength training, indoor climbing, skiing, and snowboarding. It also integrates with your phone to receive emails, texts, and alerts on your watch.
The Garmin Instinct Solar 2 is the perfect watch for anyone who loves spending time outdoors in the winter. It has the longest battery life of the ski watches on our list and is packed with features to help you make the most of your time on the slopes.
Where the Instinct Pro 2 falls short is on the smartwatch capabilities. Of our reviewed ski watches, the Instinct 2 is the only one with a monochromatic display. The result is a highly efficient watch that has tremendous battery life. This is the best sports watch for those looking to leave the digital world behind and minimize distractions. It includes all the most critical tracking capabilities without the glitter of a color display.
- Glass: Power Glass
- Case Size: 40mm, 45mm,
- Strap: Silicone
- Display Type: Monochrome
- Weight: 43g, 53g
- Battery (Watch Mode): 28 days/unlimited with solar
- Solar Charging: Yes
- Excellent Battery Life
- Solar Charging
- Minimalist Design
If you want a watch that just tracks your winter sports, the Garmin Instinct Solar 2 is the one for you. It has a great battery, skiing and snowboarding profiles, and a monochromatic display. This ski watch is not for people who want a second phone on their wrist; this outdoor watch is for those who want a traditional watch that also does all the tracking you could desire.
MSRP $449.99 Check Price on Amazon
4) Best Ski Watch For Weekend Warriors (Apple) – Apple Watch Series 7
For apple users, the Apple Watch Series 7 is the best watch for weekend warriors. The smartwatch has all the bells and whistles you would expect from an Apple product. The watch is available in two sizes, 40mm and 44mm, and three different finishes. You can also choose from various strap options to personalize your look.
The new Apple Watch has an always-on display so you can see the time and your current activity at a glance. The watch also has built-in GPS and GLONASS, so you can track your location while skiing or snowboarding. One cool feature for skiers and snowboarders is the altimeter which tracks your elevation changes.
The watch also has water resistance up to 50 meters, so you don’t have to worry about it getting wet in the snow. The battery is also impressive for a full-featured smartwatch, lasting up to 18 hours on a single charge.
Take an ECG on the go with a cutting-edge sensor and also check the built-in heart rate monitor. It also includes mindfulness and sleep monitoring to help you stay healthy from head to toe. Series 7 makes it easier for you to see more health information.
The apple watch connectivity and app ecosystem are unrivaled. There are apps for everything, including tracking your runs, managing your lift tickets, and even ordering food at the resort. Apple pay is also available on the watch, so you can make purchases without taking your phone out of your pocket.
For the weekend warrior looking for a smartwatch that will work both on and off the hill, the Apple Watch Series 7 is the best ski watch available.
- Glass: Sapphire Glass
- Case Size: 41mm, 45mm
- Strap: Woven Nylon
- Display Type: Always-On Retina display color
- Weight: 42.3g, 51.5g
- Battery (Watch Mode): 18 hours
- Solar Charging: No
- Full feature smartwatch
- GPS mode and health tracking for all your skiing needs
- Extensive apps available
I recommend the Apple Watch Series 7 to weekend warriors looking for a smartwatch that will work both on and off the hill. The watch has all the features you need to track your runs, manage your lift tickets, and even order food at the resort.
MSRP From $449 Check Price on Amazon
5) Best Ski Watch For Weekend Warriors (Android) – Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro is the best watch for weekend warriors Android users. The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro comes pre-loaded with several apps perfect for skiing and snowboarding. The GPS mode tracking feature is ideal for keeping a record of your progress, while the heart rate monitor ensures that you stay in shape while enjoying your time on the mountain. Samsung Pay is also available on the watch, so you can quickly pay for your lift pass or après-ski drinks with a wrist tap.
The long battery of the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro Classic means you can ski all day without worrying about recharging your watch. When you’re finished on the slopes, connect your watch to the wireless charging dock, and you’ll be all set for your next adventure.
- Glass: Saphire Crystal
- Case Size: 45mm
- Strap: Rigid Sports Band
- Display Type: Super AMOLED Color
- Weight: 46.5g
- Battery: 80hrs
- Solar Charging: No
- Fully featured android smartwatch
- GPS and health tracking
- Android apps
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro is the perfect watch for weekend warriors who want to stay connected on the slopes. With GPS tracking, a heart rate monitor, and Samsung Pay, this watch has everything you need to make the most of your time on the mountain. The long battery means you can ski all day without having to worry about recharging, and the wireless charging dock makes it easy to keep your watch charged and ready for action.
MSRP $289.99 Check Price on Amazon
Skiing Watch Buyers Guide
If you’ve decided to buy a watch for skiing, the first question to ask yourself is what you want to use it for. Are you looking to plan a backcountry ski trip, track your vertical skied, or do you just want to be able to change your music and answer your phone without having to take it out of your pocket? How you want to use your watch will determine which ski watch is best for you and how much it will cost. Below is a list of some features you should consider when deciding which ski watch is best for you.
A good ski watch will be loaded with sensors unless you are looking for a bare-bones watch that only tells the time. GPS tracking will allow you to map your runs, track your progress and even share your location with friends in an emergency. A heart rate monitor is a great way to keep tabs on your fitness level and ensure you stay in shape for the slopes.
Although almost every ski and snowboarding watch includes GPS, they are not all created equal. There are five GPS constellations or networks. Depending on where you plan to use your watch in the world, you will want to make sure that your watch uses the correct network. United States uses the GPS network. If you plan to use your watch while skiing in Europe or Asia, you will want a watch that uses both the GLONASS and BeiDou networks. The Gallileo network is European newest addition to the GPS family, the QZSS network. This system was developed by the Japanese government and became operational in 2010. If you are looking for the best GPS watch, you will want a watch that uses all five networks.
Some ski watches come equipped with an Altimeter. This is another sensor you will want to consider depending on how you plan to use your watch. An altimeter is a must-have if you want to do any backcountry skiing. The altimeter is used to measure the altitude of the watch. This is important for calculating things like descent rate and distance skied.
A barometer gives accurate air pressure readings. This sensor can be used to predict the weather. If you plan on doing any backcountry skiing, a watch with a barometer is a good idea.
Heart Rate Sensor
A heart rate monitor will allow you to track your physical activity and how many calories you have burned.
Most ski watches these days come with some form of connectivity. Whether it is Bluetooth, ANT+, or Wi-Fi, this feature allows you to connect your watch to other devices. You can use this to transfer data from your watch to your computer or phone. Some watches will even enable you to control music playback and answer phone calls from the watch face.
When considering skiing watches, you will want to think about the battery. If you plan on using all the features of your watch, you can expect the battery to drain quickly. The more features a watch generally has, the worse the battery life. Some watches are solar and will charge in direct sunlight.
Falls and bumps are all part of the skiing experience. You will want to make sure that your watch can withstand the abuse. Watches with metal cases and sapphire crystal faces are more durable than plastic watches.
Skiing can be a wet sport. Snow will get on your watch no matter how careful you are. Whichever watch you choose for skiing water resistance is an absolute must.
Many skiing watches will offer a multitude of tracking modes. Tracking modes will determine which sensors are turned on, and how often they record their information. Some of the best watches also include detailed maps of resorts which can be helpful when you’re trying to find your way around. Topographical maps are also available on some models and are useful when on a backcountry ski trip.
What is the Best Watch For Skiing?
The best ski watch is the Garmin Fenix 7. With GPS tracking, a heart rate monitor, and even ski resort maps, the Fenix 7 is ideal for skiing and snowboarding. It is an adventure GPS watch that will precisely track all your activities. Garmin has a variety of outdoor apps and features, making it the best watch for skiing.
Can you wear a watch while skiing?
Yes, you can wear many sports watches while skiing. Bulkier watches for skiing may not easily fit under your ski gloves, so make sure your chosen model works well with everything you wear while skiing.
Do I Need a Special Watch For Skiing?
No, you don’t need a unique watch for skiing. However, there are several ski-specific features that you may want to look for in a watch, such as GPS tracking and a heart rate monitor.
How to Choose the Best Ski Watch?
When considering the best ski watches, you should consider the type of skiing you will do the most. If you are someone who loves a backcountry ski trip, then GPS tracking will make sure you don’t get lost easily. For resort skiers, tracking the number of runs and ski maps are more important.
Which is the best Android smartwatch?
The best ski watch for Android is the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. The watch comes pre-loaded with several perfect apps for skiing and snowboarding, including GPS tracking, a heart rate monitor, and even Samsung Pay. The excellent battery means you can ski all day without worrying about recharging your watch.
The best watches for skiing have come a long way in recent years, and several different options are available to suit your needs. Whether you’re looking for a full-featured smartwatch or a simple GPS watch, that’s perfect.
When choosing a ski watch, you must consider what features are most important to you. If you’re looking for a watch that will track your progress on the slopes, then a GPS watch is a good choice.