Rifle Scopes for HuntingWhen looking at rifle scopes for the purpose of hunting, you will need to take more specific considerations with regards to the following:
- Your local terrain or the terrain in which you will be hunting will determine the type of rifle scopes you will need. If you are hunting in dense bush, you will need to narrow down rifle scopes that have variable power so that you can dial down the magnification making it easier to spot you target.
- Choice of caliber will have an effect on the required ruggedness of your choice of rifle scopes. Be sure to check what the rifle scope is rated for before making a purchase. We recommend Vortex Optics as their scopes are incredible rugged and come with an unconditional warranty.
- Time of day will determine what size of objective lens you will need, as well as whether or not your rifle scope will need an illuminated reticle. If you are shooting only during the day, rifle scopes with 40mm objective lenses will do just fine. However, if you plan on shooting at night, or even at sunrise or sunset, or other low light conditions, rifles scopes with larger objective lenses will make your life much easier. For these low light conditions, rifle scopes with 50mm objective lenses are very much recommended.
- Weather conditions. Almost all rifle scopes these days will be waterproof, especially the ones by Vortex Optics, but it's still worth mentioning that it will need to be waterproof.
- There are so many reticle options, but for the basic hunter, a normal duplex reticle will do just fine. If you want to spoil yourself, you can opt for rifle scopes that have a BDC which are calibrated to most common calibers like the .308. If you are a more advanced marksman, you could also look at rifle scopes with mil-dot type reticles which enable you to range targets by measuring them in your rifle scope.
- Distance to your targets will play a factor in the selection of rifle scopes. Anything longer than 100m and you will need consider rifle scopes with adjustable parallax. The lack of adjustable parallax will mean that you will not be able to keep you target and reticle in focus at the same time. It will also make you prone to parallax error. Read more about parallax error here.
- Ruggedness will allow you to have more freedom with your rifle, knowing that if you are stalking an animal, bumps and nicks won't disturb your scope's ability to maintain zero or compromise its waterproofness.
- MOA or MRAD? Well, MOA is oriented toward people who think in inches and yards. MRAD is well suited to us who think in Metric units. IE. Centimeter and meters. They are both measurements of angles. MOA is 1inch and 100 yards, MRAD is 1cm and 100m. You will need to understand this when you are zeroing rifle scopes or making adjustments for bullet drop and wind.
Rifle Scopes for Long Range Shooting
- Reticles are very important in rifle scopes for long range shooting. You will need to either have a marked reticle in MOA or MRAD. But a marked reticle is almost essential. It will make your life incredible easier when you are able to use the markings to either calculate the distance by measuring targets, or do holdovers to allow for bullet drop and wind.
- Adjustable parallax allows you to keep both your target and reticle in focus. Most non adjustable parallax settings on modern rifle scopes are permanently fixed at 100m, which means shooting beyond that will make it impossible to keep everything on the same focal place. An adjustable parallax feature will eliminate this problem as well as something called parallax error. Read more about parallax error here.
- Adjustable focus comes standard in most rifle scopes, however it is important to know that this is meant to focus the reticle only, do not try to focus the target using this adjustment as it will cause your reticle to become out of focus and will also induce parallax error.
- Size of objective lens. For long range shooting, a bigger objective lens is very important. You need to gather as much light as possible so that you can clearly see the target at high magnifications. This will affect the resolution of your picture. Small objective lenses will make the target at long distance appear blurry.
- Adjustable turrets will allow you to quickly and easily make adjustments to compensate for wind conditions and bullet drop at various distances.
- Rifle scopes with Illuminated reticles will be important of you will be shooting in low light conditions.