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Mar 25th, 2012
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Advice for a scope, elk gun #7430492
02/11/19 03:04 AM
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Looking for a reliable scope that will handle Montana weather in November and give good shots to 5-600 yards with good glass. Not trying to break the bank but also donít want a 100 dollar cheapy either. Rifle currently has a Nikko-Sterling scope that came on the rifle, but want something better.

What say the THF?

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7430720
02/11/19 01:34 PM
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VX-6HD. 3-18x44.

Lightweight, excellent glass, can dial if needed.

Can be found for around $1300 if you look on Gunbroker.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7430739
02/11/19 01:55 PM
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AMG is my go-to hunting suggestion for good glass and light weight. I don't know anything about the VX-6HD that doc suggested. SWFA HD 5-20 is another good option.

If you want to go cheaper, you could consider a Vortex PST Gen 2 3-15, which I think is a pretty nice scope for the money, can be had around $700 used. But it's definitely a step behind everything else listed.

But if you're using a Nikko Sterling right now, these are all going to look like swarovskis.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7430998
02/11/19 05:31 PM
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A price range would help. As you have probably discovered, people here have champagne tastes.


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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: syncerus] #7431128
02/11/19 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by syncerus
A price range would help. As you have probably discovered, people here have champagne tastes.

I always enjoy spending someone else's money.

I also find that the $300-$400 stuff isn't appreciably better than the $150 stuff.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431137
02/11/19 07:38 PM
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My Texas deer gun currently has a Swaro Z5 series scope, love that one but that gun shoots like a laser and donít want to change anything on it. So not taking it off and putting on the elk gun. Looking for something sub 1K, but agree with patriot above that things a couple hundred bucks tend to be marginally better than 100, so budget would probably be in the 700-1000 range, but if 12-1300 is an appreciable difference for the money, then so be it.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: patriot07] #7431149
02/11/19 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by patriot07
Originally Posted by syncerus
A price range would help. As you have probably discovered, people here have champagne tastes.

I always enjoy spending someone else's money.

I also find that the $300-$400 stuff isn't appreciably better than the $150 stuff.


I hear you, and Iím as bad as anyone here when it comes to stuff like this. Itís easy to enjoy nice things.


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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431163
02/11/19 08:02 PM
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I just bought a Trijicon accupoint 2.5-12.5x42. Itís got a 30mm tube but isnít horribly bulky. If you like the available reticles it is very nice for $900.


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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431177
02/11/19 08:13 PM
02/11/19 08:13 PM
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A couple of scope that come to mind would be the Leopold VX5-HD and Vortex Razor LH. Very good glass including in low light. I'd recommend 3-15 magnification range. Should not have any issues with dialing for distance for hunting and associated practicing.

Based upon personal experience over the past 2-3 years, I'd avoid any Vortex product not in the Razor line due to quality control issues.

May be able to find some used high quality, great glass scopes in your price range.

Unable to speak about other brands or scopes in your price range.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431227
02/11/19 08:58 PM
02/11/19 08:58 PM
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If looking for a cope for Montana I would be considering quality and weight. One trip that it was in the 70s when we left Texas and the first night in Montana it dropped below zero and stayed 5 degrees or less 2 Leupold scopes lost their ability to hold zero. The warranty does little good on the Mountain.

out to 600 I would want ability to dial for distance or a good reticle to hold for the distance and wind.

Not sure what I would go with now but it would not be one of the 2+ pound scopes

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431295
02/11/19 10:09 PM
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We hunt in cold all the time and with Leupold exclusively and never had an issue with holding zero in the cold.
Are you doing a mountain hunt or possibly plains cause no need for 20x in the mountains.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431318
02/11/19 10:25 PM
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Hunt will be with an outfitter, I am planning for a combination of plains and mountain, just depends where the elk are and we will find them. Need to be prepared for both situations, so it is a little open ended.

Def need something durable but not a paperweight. Want good glass, with ability to dial or shoot reliably (as good as I can) out to 500+

Any other options? I am open to higher price tags if thatís what I am asking for...

Edit: hunt will be in 2020, so I have some time to buy and set up

Last edited by Texas buckeye; 02/11/19 10:26 PM.
Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431349
02/11/19 10:51 PM
02/11/19 10:51 PM
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VX-6HD or VX-5HD. I own the 6 but highly recommend the 5. The extra bells and whistles on the 6 are not worth the extra money in my opinion. The 5 has the same excellent glass and can be had with the better locking turrets that come on the 6. If they would have had the 5 I wanted in stock the day I was there I would have never bought the 6.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431546
02/12/19 02:37 AM
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I'm not a knowledgeable as some of the folks on here, but for what it's worth, I have had great luck with Burris scopes and spotting scopes.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431628
02/12/19 04:00 AM
02/12/19 04:00 AM
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Good thread. I got in the Optics section to ask the same question. Same as OP, but going to Colorado. I have a Ziess Conquest on 2 guns I elk hunt with. I know there have been issues with Conquest scopes, but neither have failed me,

I need ability to dial for distance or have a BDC type reticle. And don't want a huge chunky scope.


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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7431778
02/12/19 01:03 PM
02/12/19 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Texas buckeye
Hunt will be with an outfitter, I am planning for a combination of plains and mountain, just depends where the elk are and we will find them. Need to be prepared for both situations, so it is a little open ended.

Def need something durable but not a paperweight. Want good glass, with ability to dial or shoot reliably (as good as I can) out to 500+

Any other options? I am open to higher price tags if that’s what I am asking for...

Edit: hunt will be in 2020, so I have some time to buy and set up



another vote for the VX-6.


I got mine at a bargin of $995 in a mom and pop gun shop...complete with firedot. Was actually looking for a VX 5 HD when I cam across it


I've never had real expensive glass on any of my scopes, a couple of VX-2's Leupolds, one Vortex Diamondback and a redfield that I've def. gotten my money on. The VX-6 glass is unreal. Only a Swavroski has as clear/clearer glass but you'll spend more $$$ getting it.


at 500 yards set on 18X, its still crystal clear if there is no distortion in the air. makes those long shots easy.




Last edited by txtrophy85; 02/12/19 01:04 PM.
Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7432497
02/12/19 11:42 PM
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The Vortex Razor LH was mentioned earlier in this thread. I've got the 2.5-10x model, and agree the glass is very nice. It's also a 1" tube and quite light.


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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7432586
02/13/19 01:06 AM
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I may be selling my SWFA HD 5-20 soon. Hate to do it, but found another one that I love with a reticle that's a little better for precision target shooting. PM me if you're interested.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7432614
02/13/19 01:27 AM
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VX-6HD tonight. Same glass as VX-5. My buddy spotted what may have been a moth under the feeder with his scope. Turned out in mine it was a fat pig. It was so clear I didnít understand why his Nikon was seeing moths.

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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: wp75169] #7433142
02/13/19 05:08 PM
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I am a big fan of Nikon scopes, I have the Prostaff 5 with BDC reticle on my Browning X-bolt. Great scope and will not break the bank. 2cents


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Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7433193
02/13/19 06:14 PM
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I am a broken record on this ..
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Affiliated with Silencer Shop, Steiner Optics,Trijicon and Wilson Combat. Dealer for Steiner, Flir and Pulsar.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7433233
02/13/19 06:58 PM
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Have only killed a couple dozen of them, but to me, you guys are over thinking this. Go to www.Bearbasin.net and get a Leupold VX-3 2.5x8X for $399 on sale. Will work in the timber on low power, and for any shots out to 500yards with no problem at all. Indestructible scope, get warranty if you ever need it (I never have on any Leupold optic), and outstanding prices.

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Texas buckeye] #7433249
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Just keep it dialed down while hunting until you need the higher magnification. Seen too many friends crank their scope up and not be able to find game in it due to small field of view.
That rifle will get heavy too after a morning of hiking for game, I would keep it as lightweight as possible.
With hunting hours 1/2 hr before and after sunrise and sunset no real need for the huge light gathering objectives and tubes.
A good pair of binos would be where I would spend my money over an expensive scope, but you do need one that will handle some cold nasty weather without fogging up. Get a scope cover for the hunt.
Sometimes you will not have time to dial up your yardage , know your reticle and how to use it.
A big issue we see with newer elk hunters is no ability to get a timely shot off. Elk can cover a lot of ground and be gone before you get a yardage and get dialed in for it.

Sounds like a fun hunt on plains and mountains, hope it works out well for you !!

Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Wytex] #7433260
02/13/19 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Wytex
Just keep it dialed down while hunting until you need the higher magnification. Seen too many friends crank their scope up and not be able to find game in it due to small field of view.
That rifle will get heavy too after a morning of hiking for game, I would keep it as lightweight as possible.
With hunting hours 1/2 hr before and after sunrise and sunset no real need for the huge light gathering objectives and tubes.
A good pair of binos would be where I would spend my money over an expensive scope, but you do need one that will handle some cold nasty weather without fogging up. Get a scope cover for the hunt.
Sometimes you will not have time to dial up your yardage , know your reticle and how to use it.
A big issue we see with newer elk hunters is no ability to get a timely shot off. Elk can cover a lot of ground and be gone before you get a yardage and get dialed in for it.

Sounds like a fun hunt on plains and mountains, hope it works out well for you !!


Solid, real-world advice.


Originally Posted By: Russ79
I learned long ago you can't reason someone out of something they don't reason themselves into.


Re: Advice for a scope, elk gun [Re: Wytex] #7433266
02/13/19 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Wytex
Just keep it dialed down while hunting until you need the higher magnification. Seen too many friends crank their scope up and not be able to find game in it due to small field of view.
That rifle will get heavy too after a morning of hiking for game, I would keep it as lightweight as possible.
With hunting hours 1/2 hr before and after sunrise and sunset no real need for the huge light gathering objectives and tubes.
A good pair of binos would be where I would spend my money over an expensive scope, but you do need one that will handle some cold nasty weather without fogging up. Get a scope cover for the hunt.
Sometimes you will not have time to dial up your yardage , know your reticle and how to use it.
A big issue we see with newer elk hunters is no ability to get a timely shot off. Elk can cover a lot of ground and be gone before you get a yardage and get dialed in for it.

Sounds like a fun hunt on plains and mountains, hope it works out well for you !!


Good advice

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