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Garmin eTrex Venture Waterproof Hiking GPS

3.2 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

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  • WAAS-enabled
  • Worldwide database of cities
  • 1 MB memory
  • Stylish, green translucent case
  • Package Includes: eTrex Venture, City Point Database, PC interface cable, Wrist strap, User's guide, Quick reference guide
7 used from $50.00

Product Features

  • Size (LWH): 8.5 inches, 6 inches, 3 inches
  • Weight: 1 pounds
  See more technical details

Product Description

Product Description

The eTrex Venture offers a worldwide database of cities and increased internal memory. The one megabyte memory capacity allows the eTrex Venture to accept downloaded information from Garmin's new MapSource Points of Interests CD-ROM (not available until April). The CD enables users to download locations such as restaurants, hotels, shopping malls, and entertainment. Once the information is loaded into the unit, and a point of interest is selected, telephone and address information will appear on the screen. The new eTrex Venture uses a rocker switch, like a computer's mouse, making it easier to operate. Lightweight design for easy portability. The 160 x 288 pixel screen has the highest resolution in its class. Stores up to 500 waypoints. Waterproof construction to IPX 7 immersion standards. The Venture uses Garmin's 12 parallel channel GPS receiver for a quick and accurate position. Uses 2 AA batteries (not included). Includes PC interface cable.


Amazon.com Review Garmin's eTrex Venture GPS receiver offers a host of track- and path-related programs and is surprisingly easy to use. Its size and design make it comfortable to use one-handed, and its automatic tracking feature and ability to download maps from optional CD-ROMs make it an excellent navigation tool.

The main menu. View larger.

Current position display. View larger.

Point of interest information page. View larger.

The Garmin eTrex Venture provides easy-to-use GPS navigation in the palm of your hand. View larger.
Roughly the size and shape of a cell phone, the Venture has six buttons that are easily accessible by thumb and forefinger. The Power, Page, Zoom In, Zoom Out, and Find buttons are along the side, with the big-daddy navigation button (a directional click-button akin to a thumb-operated joystick) on the front above the screen. The side buttons are stiff enough that it's nearly impossible to accidentally push one. However, we found the navigation button to be a bit too stiff, which caused us several errors in entering waypoints.

Text was very easy to read--highlights are discernible and menu bars and clickable objects are well defined. The unit also has an excellent backlight, which illuminates the whole screen with a white light, giving excellent contrast and viewing capability at night.

The Venture's interface is split into five different pages, each providing different functions. The main menu page gives you access to your saved routes and tracks, as well as setup for using WAAS (Wide Area Augmentation Service) reception, unit measurement, time, and display. These are all quickly rotated through with the click of the Page button on the right-hand side of the unit.

The map page displays the basemap included with the Venture, and for outdoor excursions it provides all the basics you'll need. It automatically tracks your movements and you can save individual tracks for later viewing. The map is zoomable from 500 miles to 20 feet depending on your preferences. You can place waypoints and places of interest on the map and name and change the icons of each to create your own personalized maps. If you decide you want to go somewhere, press the Find button and you'll get quick access to waypoints, your favorites list, and nearby cities.

The Venture features 1 MB of memory for downloading points-of-interest data--including lodging, business services, banks, and more--from optional CD-ROMs via the included PC cable. Unfortunately, for more detailed mapping you'll need to look to the Garmin eTrex Legend or Vista, both of which have larger memory capacities and the ability to download detailed maps.

Reception was, of course, best outside on a clear day, but the Venture retained most of its functionality under limited cover like small buildings or thick trees.

All in all, the Garmin eTrex Venture is a nifty little GPS tool and is ready to roll for your outdoor adventure. However, if you're looking to use more detailed map data with your GPS, the Garmin eTrex Vista or Legend would be a better choice. --Matt Deffer


  • Intuitive interface
  • Clear, easy-to-read display
  • Create waypoints at key locations for easy navigation
  • Included PC cable for downloading firmware upgrades and maps
  • Cons:

  • 1 MB memory only accepts points-of-interest data

  • What's in the Box
    eTrex Venture GPS receiver, City Point database, PC interface cable, wrist strap, user's guide, and quick reference guide.

    Product Information

    Product Dimensions 8.5 x 6 x 3 inches
    Item Weight 1 pounds
    Shipping Weight 1 pounds
    ASIN B000058BCO
    Item model number 010-00225-00
    Batteries 2 AA batteries required. (included)
    Customer Reviews
    3.2 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

    3.2 out of 5 stars
    Best Sellers Rank #335 in Electronics > GPS & Navigation > Sports & Handheld GPS > Handheld GPS Units
    #8,777 in Sports & Outdoors > Sports & Fitness > Hunting & Fishing > Hunting > Hunting Accessories
    #34,901 in Sports & Outdoors > Sports & Fitness > Accessories
    Discontinued by manufacturer Yes

    Technical Specification

    Warranty & Support

    Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here


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    Customer Questions & Answers

    Customer Reviews

    Top Customer Reviews

    Verified Purchase
    I purchased the Garmin Venture a year ago. I have used it on several 20 mile kayaking trips down a river and this past April used it for a 135 mile river trip. It was extremely accurate and we not only knew where we were, but how far it was to the next landing or landmark.

    It did take some time to learn how to operate the unit. The instructions were not as clear as I would have liked but trial and error is a great teacher. I had a friend who got me interested in geocaching and that really helped me learn how to use all of the Venture's features. It is easy to upgrade from the Garmin website and to also download maps from the Mapsource CD-ROM's. It is kind of like learning to use a computer. Don't be afraid to try something. You won't hurt it.

    I usually average 18+ hours on a pair of batteries. I also purchased a power cord so that I could use it in my vehicle. I just plug it in and wedge the GPS between the windshield and dashboard and follow the arrow to the next geocache.

    I have been impressed with the toughness of this unit. I have dunked it in the river, dropped it, and generally given it a rough time. I would recommend this to someone who is interested in a GPS but does not want to invest a lot of money.
    Comment 34 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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    I like it, it's very simple to use (more like a calculator than a computer) and pretty rugged, waterproof to 10 feet (I found this out the hard way) and generally ready for the rough life.
    I only have a couple of real beefs with it -
    1: the unit eats batteries like candy if it's constantly on, _especially_ if you use the backlight. Invest in rechargeable batteries.
    2: the display plate is thin ABS plastic and I'm worried about a sharp object or a good crack shattering the glass;
    3: The LCD display is also hard to read in poor light (specifically by car dome light at night), but there is a backlight;
    4: It is complete BS that you can't enter your own data via a PC interface without buying that Garmin map software.
    None of these beefs are particularly troublesome. I chose the Venture because it seemed the best compromise between price and functionality. I would recommend it for anyone as a first GPS, I think the mapping functionality is great for travelers.
    Comment 62 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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    I returned a Cobra GPS 100 and upgraded to the eTrex Venture for the extra money. What a difference only a few dollars more can make! this is my first GPS unit ever, and I had no problems picking everything up within a day.

    For starters, it only took about two minutes to locate a satellite for the first time (supposed to take up to five) and averages about 30 seconds to locate one in general. The screen resolution is easy to read and the options for customizing the map make it even easier if you have trouble reading small text. The waypoint markers are easy to define and edit. The compass seems to be very quick in picking up your movements. Almost everything is customizable giving you endless options for your specific use for the GPS unit. The unit is comfortable in the hand, although some of the buttons are a little stiff at first.

    My satellite reception is excellent. I took it hiking in 40°F rain and hail (obviously very overcast) and only lost reception once while walking under heavy tree cover. On the way home I placed it on the dashboard and it tracked me 33 miles home without losing reception once. This was in 500 ft visibility fog on a one lane curvy mountain road. This unit definitely gets the job done.

    My only gripes are there's no beep or sound when it loses reception and you have to press enter to acknowledge you have lost reception, thus it begins tracking you again. So if you hike by turning the unit on and placing it in your backpack, or even on your belt, you could have lost reception and not known it, and because you haven't acknowledged the unit, it's not tracking you anymore (as far as I can tell).

    Other than that, this unit works perfect for getting you in and out of areas where there's no trails and finding that perfect spot to spend the night or fish and hunt.
    Comment 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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    Don't know exactly what type of GPS device you need? Well, if you're a hiker/climber, then this is the one. The model below it is too simple, and the ones above it are too much. The eTrex Venture gives you everything you need to navigate and keep track of your exact position. SA (Selective Availability) is gone. And, the differential correction associated with this device is good enough! I was able to keep track of my position/speed/elevation/bearing from the moment I left my house driving through the city and into the parks where I climb/hike. The details are great for road travel and the trails. If you don't care too much about exact road points with street names, the Venture works great. Waypoint tracking: simple. Track logs: simple. With its 1M of memory, it's enough to log and trackback your routes and do whatever you want with them! Plus, you can't beat the sleek design!
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    Needing a GPS to navigate through a couple thousand acres of parkland for my job, I needed a compact yet powerful GPS receiver. After comparing and price shopping I setteled on the Garmin eTrex Venture. Perfect decision. This unit is small enough to wear on the belt without the screen being so small its unreadable. The Venture is easy to use with the click stick that allows fast moving through the diffrent menus and options. Waypoints are easy to use and set and navigation is a breeze. The navigation menu allows for lots of different custom windows to be displayed. Once at a location its simple to mark the location into the waypoint list. THe waypoint list even has a whole long list of different symbols to choose from to mark the spot. Everything from a shopping cart to airplane symbols are included to help specificaly label a location. Overall this is a powerful compact GPS unit that has lots of useful features at a reasonable price.
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