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Everybody Is a Mountaineer and Marathoner


Exploring topics beyond our day-to-day coverage.

Everybody Is a Mountaineer and Marathoner

Long before I had an Apple Watch or even an iPhone, I had a Garmin Forerunner 201. The 201 was a beast. It was more than 2x the width of a 45mm Apple Watch and about twice the weight despite the plastic case, but it did something very cool for 2004: it put GPS on your wrist. As a runner, that meant tracking routes and getting mile splits and other stats. Never mind that I had to stand still at the end of my driveway with a clear view of the sky for several minutes (often in the freezing cold) before the Forerunner to lock onto the GPS satellites. It was the earliest days of wearable, and that sort of commitment was necessary if you wanted the stats.

The Garmin Forerunner 201.

Today, GPS devices are much smaller. So are satellite phones and trackers, although I’m not convinced you could cram either into an Apple Watch, let alone an iPhone.

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