Find out which hunting scope will work best for you.
Gone are the days of lining up your front and rear sights with your target. With a hunting scope, you can easily focus in on your target, making it easier than ever to bag big game. At Blain’s Farm & Fleet, we understand you take pride in the hunt and your hunting equipment. That’s why we’re here to help you choose the best hunting scope for your next hunting trip.
How a Hunting Scope Works
Using a hunting scope can supplement your hunting game. A scope makes it easier to zone in on your target and make a more precise shot. Without a hunting scope, you have to line up your front and rear sights with your target.
With a hunting scope, you can simply line up the reticle with your target. The reticle is the part of the scope that references the center of the field of view, or where you want the bullet to hit the target. Reticles usually have cross hairs or a dot to give you that reference point. Line up that reference point with where you want the bullet to hit on the target, and pull the trigger. It’s that easy.
What to Consider When Buying a Hunting Scope
When it comes to picking out a hunting scope, there are many factors to consider. It all comes down to what you’re hunting and understanding what all the scope’s numbers mean.
Power and Magnification – The power of a scope is identified by the level of magnification it provides. For example, a scope with a power listed as “4x” will enlarge the image four times compared to what you see with the naked eye. Some scopes come with fixed power, where there’s only one level of magnification. Others have variable power, where they can range in magnification. Variable power gives you the advantage of being able to switch magnification for different hunting situations.
Different animals will require different scope power. Generally, a scope with a range of 3x – 10x will suffice. You’ll have great range variation and still be able to turn down for close-range shots.
Objective – This is the second number you’ll find in a scope, after the power. It’s the diameter of the objective lens, measured in millimeters. The bigger the number, the bigger the lens.
Exit Pupil – Exit pupil is the size of the beam of light leaving the eyepiece of the scope. The larger the exit pupil, the easier it will be to see through your scope in low light. To figure out the exit pupil, you have to divide the diameter of the scope’s objective lens by the scope’s magnification. For example, take a 50mm objective lens with 4x power, or a 4x50mm scope. The exit pupil would be 12.5mm.
Eye Relief – Eye relief is the distance between your eye and the scope where you can still see a full image. Most hunters use three or four inches of eye relief. The more recoil from your rifle, the more eye relief you’ll want. When your gun recoils, the scope can come back and hit you in the eye.
Field of View – Field of View (FOV) is what you see through the scope. FOV decreases as magnification increases. Low powered scopes will have the widest field of view.
Minute of Angle – MOA is the adjustment of the scope and variances on a target at 100 yards. For example, if the scope’s MOA is 1/4″ then every notch you turn on the adjustment knob will move the bullet’s impact 1/4″ at 100 yards.
Of course, this is just the basics. There are night vision hunting scopes for hunting after dark, which can be expensive but worth it when you can hunt at night without a spotlight or flashlight. There are also long range hunting scopes, which fall onto the expensive side. It all depends on how much you want to invest in your hunt and hunting equipment.