The Seiko Alpinist Review - I Took It Into A Proper Blizzard And It Was Fantastic
Let me start by saying I strongly disliked Seiko as a young man. I once bought a quartz diver's watch off a friend and I regretted it a few weeks later, it was totally underwhelming.
I always associated Seiko with the following - a series of diver's watches that I never wanted to own, a few knock off designs that looked like a scalloped Rolex day date and some digital watches or hybrid digital watches from memory that were solar powered. I considered them to be a Toyota, not even a Lexus.
One of my closest friends insisted that they were unbelievable watches with extraordinary bang for buck, but he was a diver's watch fan, though I'd never seen him dive once (whereas I did, and I used a Suunto freediver's watch for many years) and they were big clunky pieces of metal with large rubber straps that seemed to be all over his wrist.
Roughly 30 years after I bought my first Seiko I was strolling through the Stand Arcade after dropping off stock to a store that we work with when I decided to drop in watch store on the ground floor which sells used and new watches. I had no intention of buying a watch, none at all.
To my surprise as I was casting my eye over the Seiko range I discovered this watch that to me looked as elegant as an IWC and it had a lovely green shimmy in the lights of the store and so I enquired about it and asked to try it on. It was on my wrist for all over 5 seconds before I told the sales assistant to bag it up. The watch came with a black leather strap with a deployment clasp which I knew I'd switch out with one of my favourite green crocodile straps. When she added that it was their "Alpinist" model that had been reissued and was Seiko's first ever outdoor sports watch, well, a very happy look came over my face. I was to depart for the mountains in under a fortnight.
I am now a Seiko fan. I took that watch deep into the Snowy Mountains in blizzard condition and it didn't fog up, worked a treat and at night it lit up like a Christmas tree so I always knew what time it was. I cannot fault this watch and given that it is just over $1000 AUD I think it's one of the best bang for buck watches I have ever owned.
If you are looking for a watch that is both elegant and functional for sports - look no further.
Shop them here.