Are you really hiking with 15x56? Can they take the place of a spotting scope?

thusby

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Apr 2, 2019
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Alright, trying to decide if I want to get into some Swaro 15x56, but they weigh north of 3 pounds. Does anyone have experience lugging these things in a chest harness in some serious terrain? How well can you make out mass/tines at say 800-1000 yards?
 

Mallardsx2

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Apr 4, 2015
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They are faster than a spotter and easier to use. They weigh less and reduce eye fatigue.

I couldn't imagine using a spotting scope.
 

twsnow18

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Apr 4, 2013
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I have the old cheap Viper HD 15's. I don't carry a spotter.

They're 28 ounces. We backpack often, and I noticed that I always have mine with me where as, the Swaro 15's in our group,
are often left in the truck or at the side by side. The heavy alpha glass definitely has its place for open country hunts or truck camping hunts.

PS, thinking back to the large bucks and bulls that we've killed, I could tell with my 10's in milliseconds that we needed to shoot them.
 

grizzly_

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Feb 18, 2013
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I may have an optics problem, which is a bad addiction to have.

I currently have four pairs of Swaro's in the safe; 8x30, 10x50, 10x50, 15x56. I often carry the 15s on my chest and a spotter in the pack. If I was gonna take a smaller pair to hand-hold, I'd take the 8s as well. I don't think I'd ever take the 10s, the 15s, plus a spotter.

I think the 10x50s are the best all-around binos, but I often find myself carrying the 15s ever since I bought them. I go on a sheep hunt soon and am only taking the 15s and the spotters... the other binos are staying home.

I know that was a roundabout way to get there, but bottom line is it doesn't bother me at all to carry the 15s on my chest in a good harness.
 

twsnow18

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Little different with a sheep (brymoore’s 4th sheep tag, fu%*#r!), mountain goat or sought after buck tags.

Archery elk I only carry the 10’s.
 

squirrel

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Dec 29, 2013
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Their weight (and price) are deterrents but they bring some solid attributes to the table also. Just make sure to get a comfy chest pack that will fit their size, you will find they arent that bad to haul in "ready mode" If you do they can always be packed, but I always find I don't use them when I have to dig them out, so why have them in there anyway?

Dont fall for the "you have to have a tripod" line either. You can use them free hand or improvise, same as you don't have to have a bipod on your rifle to shoot 'with a rest".
 

antlerradar

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Oct 23, 2012
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SE Montana
Their weight (and price) are deterrents but they bring some solid attributes to the table also. Just make sure to get a comfy chest pack that will fit their size, you will find they arent that bad to haul in "ready mode" If you do they can always be packed, but I always find I don't use them when I have to dig them out, so why have them in there anyway?

Dont fall for the "you have to have a tripod" line either. You can use them free hand or improvise, same as you don't have to have a bipod on your rifle to shoot 'with a rest".
I am with Squirrel on the Binos. I almost never have my Binoculars around my neck in a pack. I want them handy so I can use them at a moments notice. I also agree to a point that you don't have to have a tripod. I free hand 15x60 most of the time. Sitting on your butt, elbows on your knees is pretty steady. It does take a little time getting your eyes and arms used to the higher magnification but like most things the more you practice the better you get. However I use binos almost every day. I would not recommend free handing 15 power binoculars if you keep them in the gun safe for 11 months out of the year.
 

CForest

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Nov 8, 2015
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NE Montana
I'm giving 15s a serisous try this year. Used some slc 15x last year on one hunt and they were awesome but had my 10s too. To justify some slc's I would have to sell my nice 10s. But after using them a bit during archery I don't think I could rock the 15s all the time. Just a bit hard on the eyes even tho I think I can hold them "steady enough" for those quick looks. Obviously they are meant to be on a tripod and that does work very well, but for my style of hunting I like to just look at things quick like at times. For serious close up I still find the need for a spotter, just depends on how particular a guy wants to be. I think next year I will be running 12x standalone with a spotter on the hunts that it's needed. But that's me
 
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