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I'm looking for a GPS receiver that has an extremely long battery life. Off-the-shelf GPS devices like the Garmin GPSMAP 64s are great, but they only go so far: they promise 16h of battery life. Having owned a Garmin eTrex Legend HCx for a long time, I'm not impressed by this: my device is over a decade old and promised 25 hours of battery life.

In practice, this means at most two or three days of trekking. I want something that will last me for a week or more. The goal is to track my position so I can see, later on, where I've been but it would also be extremely useful if the device could display, on demand, its current location. This, ideally, would be done with a map like the above Garmin devices but I could live with plain longitude/latitude on a tiny LCD, which I could then transpose on a paper map.

The "GPS loggers" with longer battery lives (beyond 40 hours, like the Qstarz BT-Q818XT) do not have any sort of display that report their location, which is pretty annoying.

My use case is I do long distance trekking traveling, and I travel fairly light. No solar panels or recharge capacity, and I'm offline for days. I'd like to have a device that can keep track of my travel, but also tell me where I am in a pinch. It doesn't have to have a fancy display or maps or Bluetooth or any stuff like that. Simpler is better, and I have a phone for the fancy stuff when necessary.

So, in short, I'm looking for a GPS receiver that is:

  • light
  • rugged, ideally waterproof
  • long-lasting (40h+ battery life, or 5 hours/day for 8 days)
  • capable of reporting the current location somehow (map or current coordinates)
  • standard (normal USB cable or SD card for transferring data on a Linux computer)

In a sailing expedition, I remember seeing someone with a tiny GPS tracker they would wear on their neck. It was about the size of a wrist watch and would just show the current location, continuously, on an LCD screen. It was able to track for the entire two weeks of the trip, although I believe it might have needed a recharge on the boat's power at some point. I unfortunately can't find that thing anywhere anymore and forgot to ask that person which device it was.

Any ideas?

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