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Spotting scope: why you need it?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 12:31
RDM17353 View Drop Down
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Okay, so I am really digging deep into the subject matter.  The more I dig, the more questions I have, but I am learning a ton.  If you have a good scope and binos, add on a rangefinder, what extra benefit does the spotting scope buy you?  is this just for ranges beyond 1000 yards+?Before long, I will be weighted down with optics and no room for snacks.  LOL!  In all seriousness, what are their function?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 12:40
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So you can see stuff up closer.

What is going to be your use for all these things?  Are you a hunter or just wanting these things for target shooting?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 13:34
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Like ST said, it depends on if you are hunting or target shooting.

If you are shooting targets, it is important to have a spotting scope.

If you are hunting, it is important to have a spotting scope.

The frequency I use my optics goes like this:  Binoculars most (every single day), Spotting Scope second, Rangefinder third, Riflescope fourth.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 13:38
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I was getting at size of scope may make a difference depending upon what he is doing.  I like to use my collapsible Meopta when hunting if I am hiking.  But the Razor is a little better to use at the range.  And depending upon the type of hunting a person is doing they may not need a spotter at all.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 13:41
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im glad i dont have to worry about it up here. the trees are so dense that having a 3x9 is almost overkill. irons would be gods plenty for me in all reality, but dont tell my wife thatWink
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 13:46
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Originally posted by supertool73 supertool73 wrote:

I was getting at size of scope may make a difference depending upon what he is doing.  I like to use my collapsible Meopta when hunting if I am hiking.  But the Razor is a little better to use at the range.  And depending upon the type of hunting a person is doing they may not need a spotter at all.


I was being a smarta...

We really need to hear what the intended uses are, and where.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 14:00
RDM17353 View Drop Down
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It's about 50/50 dense woods to open range where I could get a shot up to ~600 yards.  But I would say for the 50% that are non-dense woods it would be in the 100-300 yard range.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 14:01
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Also, the scope would probably be a 3-12X56
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 14:05
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Are you going to be evaluating trophy quality, or just identifying a target?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 14:24
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Will be evaluating the trophy quality.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 14:30
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You should be able to get a pretty good idea of trophy quality out to 600 yards through your riflescope, but a spotter would be better, especially at the far end of your range.

Spotters also save a lot of walking during range shooting and practicing in the field.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 16:01
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Thanks.  Future additions down the road.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/01/2011 at 21:50
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It does not sound like a spotter is going to be all that useful to you.  At distances to 600 yards a good binocular (a good one) should show most of what you need to know.  But in certain instances deer in cover may need a spotter at even 400 yards.  Keep in mind a riflescope is first a gunsight and it is only secondarily an optic.  You should have the information in hand (or in your head) when you shoulder the rifle to find the buck in the scope.  The scope, at that point, needs to be good enough to determine you have the same animal in your sight as you have already evaluated. 
 
I use binoculars far and away the most of anything outside my eyes and feet when hunting, so I expect most from them.  My next concern is the spotter.  In my case, I like to hunt high desert Mule Deer and distances can get to be long.  So when I have a spotter it needs to be good enough (at least on par quality wise) with my binoculars as I will be able to use 40x, or more in right conditions.  My last optical concern is the scope.  I will take a rugged, reliable, repatable scope with adequate optics over less solid build and a sharper image.  YMMV. I spend only minutes behind a riflescope, days behind binoculars and hours (or at least fewer days) behind the spotter.  I usually find objects or places of interest with the binocular and pick it apart with the spotter.  Usually, not always Smile.  The spotter is really useful at the range too.  For what this is worth, when I am going to be out all day and weight is a concern, I usually (almost always) do not have a spotter, even in the Sage and Juniper distances.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/03/2011 at 17:54
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I wondered the same until I drew a trophy mule deer tag in the breaks of eastern Montana in an area which was walk in only.

 
I'd sit on a hill top and use bino's to find animals.  Once I found a somewhat decent buck, I'd use the spotting scope to help me decide if I needed to walk the 1-2 miles to where he was.  Sometimes I made the decision to go 1/2 the discance and look again with the spotter. 
 
Once you've found a decent buck, use the binos to figure out a good stalk route.
 
if you get hung up and can't get any closer, a good range finder to find the distance, then a good scope to make the shot.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/03/2011 at 18:19
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Depending on the situation we rely on the combination of bino's and spotter quite often while deer hunting (blacktails).

We'll glass the hillsides with binos, spot a buck and check the bones (horns), if he's 500+ yards we'll use the spotter to get a better look. From there we'll decide whether to pursue him or not. We can pick apart these same hills where the deer can bed down in the late summer months under trees, backed up against brush, etc., even catch 'em moving in-between the fairly dense vegetation in the early and late parts of the day.

Having a spotting scope out west where we hunt is a definite advantage.  Thunbs Up


(edited for grammar)


Edited by mike650 - April/03/2011 at 23:57
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/03/2011 at 20:50
Klamath View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Klamath Klamath wrote:

It does not sound like a spotter is going to be all that useful to you.  At distances to 600 yards a good binocular (a good one) should show most of what you need to know.  But in certain instances deer in cover may need a spotter at even 400 yards. ...
 
To clarify myself a little, my quoted response above was considering your thinking you maybe did not want to pack much more stuff.  If that is the case, good binoculars first.  But if you are away from camp and do not want to walk yourself to death, then a good spotter is more than useful.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: April/04/2011 at 00:56
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The kind of hunting I do pretty much demands a spotter ... let your eyes do the walkin'.
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