It’s been about six months since I have bought and tested both the Mini and the Explorer+ so it’s time for me to give you my personal experience in this Garmin inReach review.
Personal Experience with Garmin inReach
I bought my first Garmin satellite messenger in January 2020. It was the Garmin inReach Mini. I thoroughly tested it and compared it to both the SPOT Gen 3 and the SPOT X.
Next, I bought the Garmin inReach Explorer+ in February 2020. I was sure that the Garmin Explorer+ was going to be my go to satellite messenger, but that’s not necessarily true.
Garmin Satellite Messenger Tip:
I suggest using the Garmin inReach Mini on day hikes or short overnight backpacking trips, and use the Garmin inReach Explorer+ for longer outdoor adventures.
Garmin inReach Review Comparison
Garmin inReach Mini
- Small & lightweight
- Topo maps are available when synced with your smartphone
Garmin inReach Explorer+
- Larger but more powerful
- Topo maps come loaded and can be used as a standalone satellite messenger
- Built-in barometric altimeter and accelerometer
- Built-in compass
Note: there are more functions included with both of these satellite messengers. The lists above are only to show you the differences between them.
After testing both the Garmin inReach Mini and the Explorer+ for the past several months on at least 20 trails in Colorado, I have come to these conclusions.
- The Garmin inReach Explorer+ is better if you plan on longer outdoor adventures.
- The Garmin inReach Mini is better if you typically go on day hikes or short backpacking trips.
This is an extremely short article but there’s no need for me to throw in a lot of fluff just to make this longer. The truth is that both of these satellite messengers are the top of their class and hands down, better than any satellite messenger I have tested to date.
My preference for my style of hiking here in Colorado is to use the Garmin inReach Mini as my go to satellite messenger.
I would love to hear your thoughts on what satellite messenger you like best so please leave a Comment Below or send me an Email.
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