range finder


BP Hunter
October 13, 2013, 12:55 PM
This is my only 2nd year to hunt here in th open desert hills of WA. I used to hunt in TX where the shot was not more than 200 yards. Yesterday I hunted and had to take a shot I think was about 400 to 500 yards on running deer with my Ruger Hawkeye 25-06.

I had a cheapy Bushnell rangefinder that could only range up to 200 yards. I need a new one but do not want to break the bank. I am willing to pay up to $350. What quality ranger finder that can range up to 800 yards do you folks recommend? Thanks.

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October 14, 2013, 05:23 AM
Hunting ethics on the first half of this post may be why 74 have viewed this thread with no replies. It's not very THR. That's for sure. Ever heard of letting an animal walk without taking pot shots at them?

October 14, 2013, 09:45 AM
Ain`t no way in hell I would shoot at a running deer at a 100 yds. let a lone 4 or 500 yds. even with a range finder !.....I was waiting for some one to post....................

BP Hunter
October 14, 2013, 12:31 PM
You are both right to say that was an unethtical shot. I have learned my lesson.

Thank you for sharing your comments.

October 14, 2013, 01:58 PM
I have a few questions........

Having a range finder and knowing the distance to the target within a few yards is one thing but being able to connect with your weapon is another thing.

How much practice to you have at distance, say 400-500yds? Are you dialing in adjustments on your scope or using a holdover? Can you place 5 shots in a 8" group consistently at 500 yards in all conditions? If you can great! How about hitting moving targets at the same distance? Are you good at judging speeds of running game?

There are significant differences in bullet drop when you push them past 300 yards. Just a guess but probably 20 inches in elevation alone between 4 and 500 yards using an average 25-06 load using a 115-117gr load.

October 14, 2013, 02:50 PM
I had the same initial reaction as the others to your post, but you say you've learned your lesson, so maybe I can offer an answer.

I have a Nikon rangefinder (sorry, can't recall a specific model) that I have found easy to use, reliable and accurate (based on pacing off distances after ranging). I'd say it works well on reflective surfaces out to at least several hundred yards, less on non-reflective surfaces. I don't use it to take 500 yard shots, rather I find it interesting to range landmarks around my set-up so I have confirmation of my guess at range. I could certainly hunt without the rangefinder but I do enjoy it.

October 14, 2013, 04:05 PM
"Yesterday I hunted and had to take a shot ..."

BP Hunter, glad you recognize the error of your ways re: shooting at a running deer at an unknown distance.

There is another thing you should consider, which is the idea that you HAD to take a shot.

Hunters should never think they have to take a shot. It's hunting, which is neither a HP match nor warfare. We choose to take a shot, realizing that we are responsible for that bullet wherever it ends up.

BP Hunter
October 14, 2013, 06:52 PM
I am going out this Saturday and will spend the whole day out.

It's funny, before this incident my fellow hunter friends did the exact same thing. I also thought of it as an unethical shot. I didn't judge them and just held my tongue. That day when I made that shot, I saw the deer half a mile away and sneaked up to it. I even ended up on all fours to get a good position. Then they saw me and ran. I got desperate and wanted the harvest, I did not even think of the ethics of it. It just flew out the window. You can't help sometimes that you "had" to make the shot since you worked so hard for it.

I am not justifying it. But I most definitely have learned this lesson. I will take it with me whever and wherever I hunt.

Thank you.

October 14, 2013, 07:12 PM
I wish I could be more help. I asked the same question 4 years ago on another forum. A member there offered to sell me his old Leica's for $200. I jumped all over that and researched no further.

I will say that at $350 there are a lot of decent rangefinders out there and they should be used. Nothing wrong with taking a 400+ yard shot if you've done your homework, have the right tools, and are confident of your skills. A shot at a running animal at that range would be reserved for a wounded animal for me, but there are people with the skills to do so.

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