If Bob Dylan had one, he would never have sung, "How does it feel / To be on your own / With no direction home ..." The eTrex Summit, a nifty handheld GPS device made by Garmin Corp., is perfect for outdoor adventurers. The size of a cell-phone, it fixes your position on the surface of the earth to within 30 feet. Plus, it comes with a built-in altimeter and an electronic compass — all packed into a sleek, waterproof case. I use it to explore the Vermont backcountry on skis. I plan my route ahead of time using a topographical-map program, download the information to my eTrex Summit, and then follow the way points to make sure I go where I planned to go. You can purchase the eTrex Summit on the Web (www.garmin.com/products/etrexsummit) for around $267, not including the topo-map software ($151) and connector cable ($38).
A version of this article appeared in the January 2001 issue of Fast Company magazine.