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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

Mrs. Santa offered to chip in on the gift I really want for Christmas . . . a spotting scope . . . and I am hoping to get some thoughts and insight from the group.

Specifically, I hope to get information on brands, models and features that are worthy of serious consideration. Money is definitely a consideration, however, I hope to get something that is a high quality optic and will be part of my essential gear for years to come. Also, I do quite a bit of hiking and backcountry hunting, so ideally I want to get something that is both rugged enough and light enough to accompany me on long hikes.

Five or six years ago I got some Nikon Monarch 10x42 binocs which have served me well . . . and were a tremendous improvement over the 7X35s I grew up using.

Thanks in advance for your input.

Thrillathehunt
 

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I have always loved my Leupold 30x scope until this past fall. I was on the Henries hunting Deer. We were looking from normal distances but the problem was that I could tell that they were mature and had a nice rack but couldn't get the detail that I wanted. I needed to see how long each tine was and how many tines he had. I was ready to throw my scope down the mountain many times. My friend came down for two days and had the Zeiss 20-60 x 85. When I got home, it only took me a couple of days to get one. It's bigger and heavier but for SERIOUS hunting, it is the way to go. ONLY CRY ONCE is my motto.
 

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No real advice on spotting scopes; simply that I have heard good things about the Cabela's own brands. One thing that I really like about the Cabela's website are the customer reviews where you can get an unbiased opinion. Like on this one http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/t...parentType=index&indexId=cat601579&hasJS=true.

BTW, as always, Cabela's is running a promotion right now where I think you get $150 off of a $500 purchase if you have the Cabela's--that may help you step up to a little nicer one.
 

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I've been doing the same looking for several years now. I have used a swaro. 60mm and an 80mm quite extensively at work. Great scopes.

I have a Leupold 15-30x50. Mind you I have dealer accounts for stuff like this, so I can afford a bit more to "try things out". The Leupold is fine, but not in the same class as the Zeiss, Swaro etc..

I have spent a lot of time up there and I would say 65% of the wolf watchers in Yellowstone are packing the Zeiss(That tells me a lot because these guys look through those suckers all day long). I have looked through them, but not side by side with any other glass. Very nice scopes and up until a few weeks ago, I had one coming as soon as one of my distributors had one in stock. Then one day a few weeks ago, I was glassing deer with a Swarovski 60mm and a friend pulled up with his new Nikon Prostaff 82mm and we set them side by side, looking at the same thing until dark. I was very apprehensive about the quality of the scope and was very passive with my words when he told me that he had looked through all of the scopes at Sportsman's and this was the one he ended up purchasing. W0W! I would say the Nikon was about 95% or better as clear and crisp as the Swarovski. (The Swaro was a 60mm and the Nikon 82mm).

Long story short, My Nikon showed up on Thursday and I think I made a very good decision.

I paid almost exactly 1/3 the price for the Nikon than I did the Zeiss. I was fully intending to buy the Zeiss, but could not do it after looking through the Prostaff.

One draw back is the tri pod that comes with it. I do a lot of video and photography (some for a living) and am used to using top of the line tri pods, such as Gitzo, Bogen etc... so I am probably splitting hairs here, but I would rather pack 1 or 2 lbs. more and have a good firm rest and fluid tri pod head than screw around with the tri pod that comes with it. Plus I'm 6'1"ish and the thing is only good for people up to about 5'8".

My advice, buy the Nikon (After you go look through all of them side by side), sell the tri pod on ebay and buy a good tri pod and head. You'll still have enough money left over to buy a new bow, rifle, or crazy night for you and your buddies at the local gentleman's club.

Good luck and make sure you look through them all before making a decision.

The Leupold is for sale if anyone is interested. :wink:
 

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I would also check into the Vortex Skyline ED 20-60x80 Angled Spotting Scope. In the grey light of early dawn you can count on the Skyline ED spotting scope for a definite edge in any hunt. When scanning distant ridges and far-off peaks, the Skyline ED scope targets the fine details you need to pick out with sharp, high-contrast images. This season, Vortex delivers the ultimate in vivid colors and high resolution with the Skyline ED. If you're looking forward to years of hunting, count on the consistency of the Skyline ED.

http://www.vortexoptics.com/spotting_scopes

I have looked through one and the image is very clear and crisp. Its very good in low light conditions.
 

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coyoteslayer said:
I would also check into the Vortex Skyline ED 20-60x80 Angled Spotting Scope. In the grey light of early dawn you can count on the Skyline ED spotting scope for a definite edge in any hunt. When scanning distant ridges and far-off peaks, the Skyline ED scope targets the fine details you need to pick out with sharp, high-contrast images. This season, Vortex delivers the ultimate in vivid colors and high resolution with the Skyline ED. If you're looking forward to years of hunting, count on the consistency of the Skyline ED.

I have looked through one and the image is very clear and crisp. Its very good in low light conditions.
Did you pull that off of the Vortex website?
 

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Yeah, why? :D
 

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There are some great spotting scopes out there to choose from. I have 2 suggestions for you.

1. The bigger the objective lens, the more light is gathered, thus you can see your animals clearer. The only draw back is they are a little heavier. My personal preference is get the bigger lens for better viewing, the positive outweighs the negative IMHO.

2. Get the angled eyepiece. I have had the straight eyepiece in the past and I hated having to "hunker" down to try to get a view. With the angled eyepiece, you dont break your neck trying to look through it. It just makes viewing a lot easier and comfortable.
 

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I did alot of searching when I was in the market for a scope. I did alot of reading and alot of looking through glass. I took almost every model that Sportsman's and Cabela's had, and took them all outside to look through them with real light.

There were some that looked good, and some where poor ,and some were just outstanding. There was one that always stood out from the crowd and that was the one I bought. I carry a Ziess 15-45. I thought about getting the 20-60 but I do alot of backpacking and this scope fits what I wanted.

At times I do wish I had the 20-60 but that is only when I am looking at extreme distances from the truck. All of the optics have pro's and con's with each model. DO not take our word for it, and buy one because we like it. But go to your sporting good store and take each model outside and see which one fits you the best.

Also do not skip out on a model just because you can't afford it right then. If you go for a lesser model then the one that you truley wanted, you will be back at sometime to get the one that you truely wanted. Buy once and sleep happy.
 

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If you go for a lesser model then the one that you truley wanted, you will be back at sometime to get the one that you truely wanted. Buy once and sleep happy.
+1
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for your thoughts and perspective . . . it has all been helpful. I will spend some time testing them out and report back when I take the leap.

Again, many thanks for your responses.
 

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Spotting scopes, when used in a telescopic fashion, will allow you to hunt more animals. I'm thinking of going hunting right now.
 

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I like what Treehugn' said and have also had great experiences with the upper end Nikon spotting scopes. Avoid the entry level ones. My favoritie is the next step up from the Prostaff, the Fieldscope III. Nikon invented ED or extra-low dispersion glass. It's the same technology that Swaro calls "high definition" or HD in their most expensive scopes. It has great light transmission. The Fieldscope III ED is still about half the price of a Swaro, and I can't tell much of a difference.
 

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All right , I got sent a Zeiss Diascope(Victory) 65mm spotting scope and eye piece today (Miscommunication with the distributor).

I can send it back or let it go to one of you fine folks for 1450. (Cost plus shipping etc.)

Let me know in the next few days if there are any takers, Otherwise I'll send it back.

Tye
 

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idiotboy said:
Spotting scopes, when used in a telescopic fashion, will allow you to hunt more animals. I'm thinking of going hunting right now.
please tell me that is really you. I put up all my salt ricks that I could this year.
 

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EPEK said:
idiotboy said:
Spotting scopes, when used in a telescopic fashion, will allow you to hunt more animals. I'm thinking of going hunting right now.
please tell me that is really you. I put up all my salt ricks that I could this year.
From one idiot to another, welcome back and thank you for the best christmas present ever!
 
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