When hunting for whitetail or other big game in western states, having the right equipment can essential for a successful trip. One important piece of equipment that many hunters overlook is the spotting scope. These can be a game-changer when locating and tracking game, especially at long distances. But with so many options on the market, how do you choose the best one for your hunting needs? Here are some factors to consider when making your selection.
One of the most important factor to consider when choosing a spotting scope is the magnification. You want to be able to clearly see your target, even at a variety of distances. However, higher magnification doesn’t always equal better performance. A magnification range of 20-60x is a good range to look for, as it allows for a wide range of viewing distances.
Best Objective Lens Size
Another important factor to consider is the size of the objective lens. The larger the lens, the more light it can gather, which will provide a brighter and clearer image, especially during low light hours. However, larger lenses also mean a heavier and bulkier scope. A lens size of 60-80mm is a good range to consider, as it strikes a balance between brightness and portability.
Hunting can be a rugged and demanding activity, so you want a spotting scope that can withstand the elements. Look for a scope that is waterproof, fog proof, and shockproof. Additionally, scopes with rubber armor or other protective coatings will be more resistant to damage.
Size and Weight
While you want a spotting scope that is durable, you also want one that is lightweight and easy to carry. Compact and lightweight is ideal for hunters who will be hiking long distances to their hunting spots. Look for a scope that is less than 2.5 pounds and less than 14 inches long.
Spotting scopes can range in price from a few hundred dollars to several thousand. While you don’t necessarily need to spend top dollar to get a quality scope, you do get what you pay for. Higher-end scopes will generally have better optics, better durability, and more features. However, if you’re just starting out or have a limited budget, there are still plenty of good options available in the $300-$500 range.
To wrap up, when choosing a spotting scope for hunting, you want to consider factors such as magnification, objective lens size, durability, size and weight, and price. By finding a scope that balances these factors to fit your specific needs and budget, you’ll be better equipped to locate and track your game, leading to a more successful hunting trip.