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Thread: Rangefinders and hunting

  1. #1

    Default Rangefinders and hunting

    My beautiful wife bought me a Leica Rangefinder for Christmas. I usually hunt moose and sometimes caribou and bear and usually do not make very long shots. I hate to send it back and hurt her feelings. Alot of you guys are hunting alot more then me and I am wondering how many of you use them and what everyone thinks about them. Did having one help in making the shot under real hunting conditions? Never considered myself a gadget guy but I seem to have accumulated them over the years. I am not sure I need one for the type of hunting I do.

  2. #2
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    338, I'd use it. I finally broke down and bought a nikon rangefinder. I'm the same way about gadgets (I like good gear just not electronics) and I'm impressed. I'd guess a range and after I lasered it I wouldnt believe my eyes (terrain can play games), besides its paid for and you dont want to make the mrs's mad.

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    My wife does stuff like that to but not to that dollar amount. I had to have a rangfinder a couple of years ago. I have yet to use it to take a shot. What I do use it for is mesuring around the house and on job sites. the Question is how good are your optics if there is room for improvement I would exchange them for better binoculars or a good down on a spotting scope.

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    Member Rod in Wasilla's Avatar
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    Even if you never actually use it on a hunt (I have used mine in sheep country), using a rangefinder in the off season is a great way to train your eye for distances. Take it with you whenever you do any scouting, hiking, or whenever. Guess the distance to a nearby object, then hit it with the rangefinder. You will be amazed at how good you'll get at judging distances. Remember, sometimes you won't get a second shot if you misjudge the first one.

    Keep it, say thank you, and be happy.
    Quote Originally Posted by northwestalska
    ... you canít tell stories about the adventures you wished you had done!

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    What Rod said!
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

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    New member mtcop71's Avatar
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    Default Use it!

    I used it for my sheep hunt last year and glad I had it. I also use it to train my eyes for bow uhnting. I will go out and guess yardage, then confirm it with my range finder. Sometimes youjust don't have time to use it for quick shots, but all in all I think they are great tools

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    I've used one on almost every hunt I've been on, usually for caribou and black bear. Its difficult judging distance over the tundra or over water. We usually have "contests" sitting in camp about how fgar away something is, most judge closer than it really is. Its helped bith at the shot and not taking the shot becasue it was farrther than I judged and farther than I wanted to shoot. Got closer and took the bull at 115 yards instead of 375 yards.

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    I absolutely use mine for bowhunting, its a must for clean kills past say 20-30 yards and for rifle hunting some animals like sheep and goats and Moose and Caribou its a valuable tool. Why guess distances? Many of guys I know tape the ballistic drops of their gun to their stock out to 500 yards but dont own a rangefinder, dont quite undertsand that. I wont hunt without one.

  9. #9
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    I use mine all the time when deer hunting on Kodiak. When sitting on stand for moose or caribou it is handy to take out and "range" some markers so I know my limits for shooting if a critter appears.
    I own the Leica and it is top rate but as the newer models keep on getting smaller I will probably replace it in a few years.
    Tennessee

  10. #10
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    Default Rangefinder

    With all the electronic gadgets used for hunting that are legal. I have a problem with rangefinders. Determining the distance to a animal is part of hunting. If an animal is that far away, you don't need to shoot. You want to kill an animal at a long distance, practice, practice, practice or get closer. If you want a clean kill you get closed.

  11. #11
    Member Kay9Cop's Avatar
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    I have a binocular/range finder combo and take it with me every time I hunt. I'm horrible with range estimation but even my hunting partner who is good at it has been off by enough to make a big difference on the hold over for a shot. The terrain is just too deceiving in Alaska to try a long shot without knowing the exact range.

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    Default use it

    I bought the Leica 1200 model this fall and have used it on 2 hunts. I will never go without one again. It is the perfect hunting tool
    An unarmed person is a victim waiting to happen.

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    I've always zero'd my guns at known distances. Precision being the objective, a range finder provides information to help make precise shots. Since I took the time to zero at a known distance it only makes sense to know what distance I'm shooting.

    My finder has demonstrated to me just how bad my distance judgement is, especially above timberline.

  14. #14
    Member AKRoadkill's Avatar
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    Yup, I've used mine for caribou hunting with both rifle and bow. Also for antelope and deer in Wyoming and CO. I wish I'd had one on a rifle hunt for 'bou several years back. I thought this monster was about 400 yards and shot way over his back. My partner dropped another bull that was with him and when we stepped it out, it was about 250. Another time, I shot what I thought was about 275; held on top of the bull's back(since I was zeroed dead on at 200 and hit very low in the chest cavity., about 18 inches below point of hold. I reckon he was a little further than I thought.

    That wide open tundra can really contort distances.

    With the deer, I ranged him at 346, so I held about 15 inches higher than I wanted to hit, and drilled it through the top of the heart. I don't tape the ballistics to my stock, I just have a good idea of about how much it'll drop at a given range.

    Same with the antelope on wide open plains. Just by looking, I had no idea if they were 150 yards or 400 yards. Rangefinder said 254 and 300, so I knew where to put my crosshairs.

  15. #15
    Member svehunter's Avatar
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    A rangefinder must be my next "must have" item for me,gotta buy one of those,any tips on which one to buy?

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    I am actually taking things one step further this year, I had a target Elevation turret installed in my Leupold VX-III and in combination with my Leica CRF1200 and known ballistics for my 300 WSM it will be a downright lethal combo. Do I have to do this? Or is it neccessary? No. I have killed most stuff inside 200 yards and most even closer than that. But like last year I was sheep hunting and I had ascended to a bowl that had 2 rams bedded. When I got to the rim I was an estimated 400-450 yards (guessing), my Bushnell Scout would not read past 326 it kept cutting out past that distance. In order for me to get closer to these rams I would have had to go down and all the way around the mountain to get on em (I was very exposed on my side and cliffs in between ), had I known what my actual distance was and what my MOA drop was on my particular rifle, a couple turns of the turret and it would have been over. By the way neither of the 2 rams were legal (3/4) which I found out at roughly 600 yards, they were close but not legal. I went with the Leica CRF 1200 because its the same optically as the tried and proven LRF1200 but in a more compact package.I got mine from Doug at Cameraland and saved well over $100 from Sportsmans Warehouse pricing. And the glass is oh so clear!

    As for feelings about using high tech technology and such, well you know my opnion is if a guy is gonna hunt, I believe that you be as proficient as you can be in whatever means you hunt, bow, muzzleloader,rifle it really doesn't matter. The animals deserve a clean kill and we should do everything in our power to harvest them efficiently rather than potentially wounding them. If you have hunted long enough you have had at least one bad experience that you dont want to relive ( where you lost an animal) and to me guessing anything increases the odds of such events happening.

  17. #17
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    I have a Leica range finder my wife also bought me. Good Women.
    On the first sheep hunt my Leicas went on they got away and rolled and bounced down about 30 yds of rock scree. I figured they were trash, but they are still good and I still use em'.

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    I too have a Leica CRF1200. Wouldn't hunt without it. I used to practice range estimation with my old rangefinder and found that out past 250 yard's I could be off a lot, depending on terrain and size of animal ranging, without a rangefinder. The Leica's are compact,quick,waterproof and clear. They helped me on a sheep hunt.

  19. #19
    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    Rangefinders are stupid, send it to me and I will throw it away for you. J/K, I needed one the other day while chasing coyotes, the difference between 300 yards and 500 yards is a big one.

  20. #20
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    if your gonna try to kill an animal, rangerfinders help make every shot a little more ethical. you can pull the trigger with confidence and make sure you are taking a shot your are capable of. no more guessing and hoping and i think's. its an i know or i don't know. great tool. as far as high tech stuff and hunting, i'd rather see the rifle scope itself go, and keep my rangefinder.

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