For anyone serious about spending time in the mountains, Suunto has long been the obvious go-to watch of choice. Last year they launched the Suunto Ambit to wide acclaim. It was the first watch to pair the GPS functions you expect in a sports watch, such as route tracking, pace, speed and heart rate, with the more serious but reliable ABC features — altimeter, barometer and compass — for which they are known.
The other big plus was a battery life of up to 50 hours in GPS mode. The result was a serious weapon, as at home on a marathon as navigating through a mountain storm.
Now the Finnish brand — who make all their Ambits in their factory in Helsinki — has brought out the Ambit2 (as well as a sports version, the Ambit2 S, pitched at the triathlon and multisport community).
Does it improve on the original? For athletes, the big announcement is swimming functionality as well as more features for bike power and POD support. Automatic correction of barometric altitude will be welcome news to mountaineers as well as storm alarm which is available as an App.
In fact, perhaps the biggest offering from Suunto is the thousands of user-created Apps that are now available for free download — for all Ambit users. These range from an App that gives your estimated marathon finish time while you run to one for mountain bikers that gives the incline of the hill you're climbing. There's even one that gives the calorific value of your outing in beers — helpful perhaps, if you're close enough to anywhere that serves them.