Long range shooting is the latest craze to sweep the hunting and shooting industry. Why not? Thumping steel consistently at 1,000 yards or more isn’t just fun, it’s rewarding. Hitting a target a half-mile away takes practice, though, and lots of it.
It also requires the right equipment. A variety of off-the-shelf bolt-action rifles do the job, but without a good scope, you might as well be throwing rocks. You don’t just need a quality scope, you need one with the tools required for long range shooting. That includes lots of dial-up capability.
“A .308 bullet can drop as much as 30 feet at that distance. Most standard scopes simply can’t account for that drop in the dial-up,” says Sportsman’s All-Weather, All-Terrain Marksmanship School owner Tim Fallon.
Long-range scopes also need high magnification. However, Fallon warns that too much magnification can be detrimental.
“Anything past 20-power can start to distort the target. You get so much mirage through the scope at higher magnifications the target can be difficult to see,” he explained. “You also need a scope with parallax adjustment so you can focus on the target at ranges beyond 400 yards.”
Fortunately, most scopes made for long range shooting come equipped with all the tools you need to thump steel at distances unheard of just a few years ago. All you need to do is practice, practice, practice. Check out these 10 great long range scopes.
- An on-board ballistics calculator removes much of the necessary math, making this a great everyman long distance scope. Just zero at 100 yards, plug in the specs of your ammo, including the ballistic coefficient, sight-in distance and drop value, press a button to engage the built-in 1,200-yard laser range finder and wait for the appropriate dot in the X96 reticle to light up. The Eliminator III also has a built-in hold-off calculator for a 10 mph wind value. The battery lasts up to 5,000 cycles and the scope comes with a 40 minute-of-angle adjustment range and a 1/8 MOA click value. Price: $1,200