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Imagine you are heli-skiing in the Tyrolean Alps. Now imagine that a mechanical malfunction forces your pilot to ground your chopper. Your Apple iPhone indicates the dreaded “No Service”. And you are hundreds of miles away from civilisation. What do you do? If this is the stuff of your daydreams, then this crop of ultra-hardy wristwatches will surely come in handy in fulfilling your fantasies.
Rolex Explorer II
Ever since Sir Edmund Hillary made history in 1953, when he summited Mount Everest with an Oyster Perpetual strapped to his wrist, Rolex has cemented its reputation as the most dependable watch for people working in hostile environments, such as in the perpetual darkness of speleology or endless daylight of polar expeditions. Hence the super legible dial and bezel with oversized hands, numerals and markers; the ultra-accurate rate of –2/+2 seconds a day; and the corrosion-resistant case hewn from a solid block of steel.
Sinn Model T1 (EZM 14)
Planning to dive between the two continental plates in Iceland? Then pack this Sinn together with your dry suit. Created from seawater-resistant but light-weight titanium, it features a captive bezel that guards against accidental rotation in either direction, colour-coded luminous hands and markers for unambiguous time telling at a glance, and a dehumidifying technology to banish fogging. Plus, it works flawlessly between the temperatures of –45°C and 80°C and at depths down to 1,000m – conditions that would have long rendered you lifeless.
Breitling Emergency Night Mission
As seen in the final “Challenge” segment before the BBC TV series Top Gear was canned, the Emergency is not just a watch, but also a beguiling piece of personal survival equipment. A marvel in miniaturisation, once activated by a pull-out antenna, it sends out distress signals via two frequencies to satellites for rescue services to locate you. This year’s Night Mission model adds a carbon-treated black titanium case with orange or yellow accents, or a blue mother-of-pearl dial.
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M “Deep Black”
From a brand famously associated with moon exploration is this state-of-the-art collection of ceramic diving watches. Crafted from a single piece of black ceramic, the case is then topped off with a ceramic bezel, making this watch one of the most scratch-resistant available. Ticking inside is perhaps the most advanced movement in the industry, the Omega Master Chronometer calibre 8906, which offers 15,000 gauss anti-magnetic protection, passing with flying colours the eight strict tests conducted by Swiss chronometer certifier METAS.
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