OK---so I’ve used a CASIO pathfinder watch for many years now. It provides not only the usual watch functions, but I also liked the altimeter. It was a bit slow, sometimes taking a minute or two or five to catch up to where I was, but it worked. And I had the solar version---so I’d never have to change a battery. I liked it so much that when I cracked the first one on a door frame (which made it a bit recalcitrant) I bought exactly the same watch again. A watch for the rest of my life.
Until the LED crystals began to wear out. A watch that can’t be read isn’t a very good watch.
So I started shopping for a replacement. And gosh, but things were expensive. And on ebay, I kept seeing ads for a SKMEI altimeter watch for $22. Really? It had all the functions, plus many more, of the Casio. True, it would need a battery from time to time. But still. $22?
I couldn’t resist.
Three weeks later I had my watch, complete with a 2-year warranty for another $2.
So how do I like it? I love it. My first surprise was walking up the stairs in my house to the second floor. The altimeter on the watch tracked my progress, step by step. I burst out laughing. I used it on this last trip, and it worked like a charm. True, like all barometric altimeters, it needed to be calibrated each morning. But the thing works. It may over estimate my totals steps in the pedometer function ( did I mention it had this?) and that may overstate my caloric consumption in that function (did I mention it had this?).
$22. Now I have only tested it down to about freezing, and up to about 80 degrees F. It probably won’t work for you on Everest, or 20,000 leagues under the sea. But hiking in the Sierra? It seems to be a great deal. I’ll keep you posted if anything goes wrong, but really. $22 for a fully functional altimeter watch is a screaming deal.