Antelope Glass Question

25/06 Rem

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Guys - my brother and I are in the early stages of planning a goat hunt in Wyoming. While accumulating PP's and planning I am also accumulating gear. I hunted antelope near Glendo in '09 so I'm pretty well outfitted. My '09 hunt was with an outfitter so one thing I did not get is a spotting scope. I'm starting to shop around for spotting scopes and was looking for advice. First, what power does everyone prefer? Secondly, what mid-range brands are solid? Most of my rifle scopes are Leupold and Nikon so I was checking out their models in the $300 - $500 range. This site is a great resource and I appreciate everyone's input!
 

TimeOnTarget

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Guys - my brother and I are in the early stages of planning a goat hunt in Wyoming. While accumulating PP's and planning I am also accumulating gear. I hunted antelope near Glendo in '09 so I'm pretty well outfitted. My '09 hunt was with an outfitter so one thing I did not get is a spotting scope. I'm starting to shop around for spotting scopes and was looking for advice. First, what power does everyone prefer? Secondly, what mid-range brands are solid? Most of my rifle scopes are Leupold and Nikon so I was checking out their models in the $300 - $500 range. This site is a great resource and I appreciate everyone's input!

IMHO, unless you are going to by a top of the line spotter, save your money.
The lesser spotters just aren't worth a darn in any low light conditions.

Id personally look for a used swaro, which would still be considerably over the 500 mark.
 

7mm08mo

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I hunted antelope this past fall and had nikon monarch 10-42 binos and a leupold spotter in the 400-600 range and seemed to reley more heavily on the binos as the spotter wasn't as crisp as the binos nor did they seem to gather as much light. That is just my experience.
 
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Antelope are easy to spot, but really hard to judge. Unless you care about Boone an Crockett horns I don't think spotting scopes lend a lot. As stated spotters that don't cost thousands of dollars are usually only decent in the lower half of their magnification. I hate packing a spotter around for antelope since I am almost always on foot. You can rent Swarovski spotters for about $150/week which is often a better idea than buying a cheaper scope.
 

25/06 Rem

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All - thanks so much for the helpful information. If I decide to go the route of a used higher end optic, what power range do you like? Thanks again - KAL
 

TimeOnTarget

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All - thanks so much for the helpful information. If I decide to go the route of a used higher end optic, what power range do you like? Thanks again - KAL

I personally like the big objective, high power spotters. They are worth the extra weight in the pack for me. It really comes down to how much weight are you willing to carry.
 
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I would worry more about having a really good tripod rather than whether maximum power is 45x or 60x.

I run a 15x-45x and find its not enough power on certain applications like determining bullet holes at the shooting range past 300 yards, but mostly use 15-30x for hunting applications. Spotting scopes are a game of compromise to a great extent. In retrospect I wish I had the 11-33 vortex razor for the way I hunt and a 60-80x 80mm+ objective for the range.
 

VAspeedgoat

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What power you use has a lot to do with how expensive your spotter is. Cheaper spotters will be blurry at high power. Your price range was similar to mine. I ended up with a leupold gold ring hd. Its a little higher than what you wanted. Going up to 40x is really not beneficial with that spotter because its starting to get blurry. If you found a used zeiss or swar that wouldn't be a problem.
 

jims

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Do yourself a favor and buy quality optics! You pay for what you get! If all else fails pick up an almost new set of Leicas or Swaros on Craigslist, Ebay, etc for about 1/2 the price of a new set. If you don't do much hunting it may not matter but if you intend on hunting much it is definitely worth saving up and making an investment in the best!
 

25/06 Rem

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Jims, I generally agree. I've said many times before that I have never upgraded glass or triggers and regretted it. A spotting scope will get much less use, but I think I may have to get back to my " buy once, cry once" attitude and pony up for a good piece of glass. I've bought a couple of used Zeiss scopes that worked out well, so I'm not opposed to shopping around to find good deal. The good news is that time is on my side.
Once again, thanks again to everyone for their valuable input.
 

Flatrock

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Do you have a Cabelas credit card? Right now, they are offering 15% back in points on Vortex Razors right now. Plus a couple more percent depending on what level of card you have. Probably not quite as good as a Swarovski or Zeiss but still a dang good scope. I've got the 50mm one and love it in the field. I plan on getting an 80 mm at some point down the road to use when I'm in or near the truck.
 

Rooster52

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I have a Nikon Spotter that I use,works great for me.Bought it used on EBAY. But I will tell you that a good pair of binoculars is a lot handier while hunting . I mostly use my spotter for target shooting anymore.
 
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