The 4 Best Long Range Hunting Scopes – Reviews 2023

best long range hunting scope

Photo by David Cockburn / CC BY

Long range shooting is in reality half art and half science. Like both art and science, you need the proper equipment and know how to do so. The good news is the equipment you can buy, the bad news is the know-how you have to earn. Long range hunting is even more difficult, because an ethical hunter is obliged to take an ethical killing shot to prevent suffering. Long range hunting is going to require a number of different things, but outside of the gun, nothing is more important than the optic. When in the field hunting you’ll need an optic that will allow you to function in all weather conditions, and it must be resistant and adaptable to these conditions.

A good long range hunting optic needs a high level of magnification, enough so the shooter can see the target in detail up to at least one thousand yards, and place a humane and precise shot on target. The minimum would sit at a magnification of 20, but higher would be more efficient. The optic should also be able to provide sufficient light transmission for long range shooting, and be relatively easy to use when in field, as in tool free.

Here are, in our opinion, the 4 best long range hunting scopes:

The Mueller Target Rifle Scope

The Mueller Target Rifle Scope has its purpose in its name. This scope is designed for long range precision shooting and is especially handy for hunting in places like the massive prairies in the American midwest. The Mueller Target scope utilizes a magnification range of 8 to 32 power and medium sized 44 mm objective lens. The objective lens allows shooters to mount the scope with either low or medium mounts. This allows the shooter to be closer to the bore and reduce torque on the scope. This is especially handy when using more powerful calibers.

The Mueller Target (see full specs) has a 4 inch eye relief which allows for the use of more powerful cartridges like big game hunting rounds like the .375 H&H magnum without worrying about a bad case of scope eye. The powerful magnification combined with the ability to use powerful rounds, and the reduction of scope torque makes the optic an excellent choice for long range hunting.

The Mueller Target uses a micro fine crosshair to avoid the crosshair covering your target. Animals are easy to see at long range, but those areas that provide a humane kill on an animal are often very small. Hitting the animal’s heart and lungs is difficult if you can’t properly see where you are shooting, and the ultra thin crosshair is a major advantage when making these precise shots. The Muller Target is built from the ground up for the precision necessary for long range hunting. The Mueller is an all around superb optic that any high power shooter could appreciate. It is one of the best long range hunting scopes period.

Cricket Checks out the Mueller 8-32X44 target scope

Barska Varmint Target

The Barska Varmint target is designed for hunting small animals at long ranges. Shooters in the west know the fun of shooting small, scurrying, prairie dog; they also know the challenge. The Barska Varmint target offers a magnification ranging from 10 power on its lowest setting all the way to 40 power, which is a massive amount of magnification for a rifle scope. The 50 mm objective lens gives a wide, bright, and clear field of view, even at extended magnifications and ranges.

The Barska Varmint Target has an adjustable objective to compensate for parallax shift for superb accuracy at long range. The lenses are fully multi coated for bright image clarity and increased light transmission over long distances. The optic is made from durable aircraft grade aluminum and is also water, fog, and shockproof. The Barska Varmint Target is designed for a rough life in the field, and is capable of taking a beating.

The Barska Varmint Target uses a target dot reticle that allows the user to see their point of aim, but uses fine lines to maintain a visual with the target. The simplistic reticle works wonderfully at longer ranges. The Barska Varmint Target is an amazing optic, and it priced right. Without a doubt, this is one of the best long range hunting scopes if you’re on a budget.

Bushnell Elite Tactical

The Bushnell Elite Tactical is a premium optic with a premium price, and you get every red cent of what you pay for. The Bushnell Elite Tactical pulls no punches when it comes to quality, clarity and durability. Bushnell fully multi coats these optics for a high level of light transmission and to prevent a beautiful high definition sight picture. This sight picture can provide a wonderful view of the animal you are stalking. The Elite Tactical (see full specs) is entirely from quality materials and is made to last.

The single piece aluminum scope body adds rigidity and precision to the optic without adding weight. The magnification ranges from 6 to 24 power and the magnification ring glides around the scope body and is aided by a small nub for positive control when wearing gloves. Anyone winter hunting in Colorado will tell you don’t do it without a good pair of gloves.

The Elite Tactical is completely water and shock proof, and is argon purged so the optic is fog proof. The overall design screams quality, and form does follow function quite closely. The optic has a classic design, but is sleek, and has a sense of professionalism to it. The Elite Tactical is for those hunters looking for the absolute best long range hunting scope for their precision rifles.

Bushnell Elite Tactical 6-24x50mm Rifle Scope Review Part 1

Vortex Optics Crossfire 2

The Vortex Optics Crossfire 2 is one of Vortex’s midline long range optics designed to allow shooters to make accurate shots at over six hundred meters and out to one thousand, and depending on shooter’s talent, they could stretch the legs even further. The Crossfire The 6×24 power magnification is capable of letting shooters reach out to at least one thousand meters.

The scope is made from a tough, lightweight aircraft grade aluminum. The housing is one piece which increases durability and actually affects precision in a positive way. The Vortex Crossfire 2 is also shockproof, and tough enough to take a bang of two, as well as work on a powerful, heavy recoiling hunting rifle. The optics durability also allows it to take a bang going up to the mountain to take that long shot at the goat or ram. The construction starts with a solid brick of aluminum and is eventually drawn down into the scope. The optic uses a O ring to protect it from the entry of water and debris.

The use of a single piece tube maximizes the alignment of the optic and greatly increases the potential precision of the rifle. The optic utilizes the dead hold bullet drop compensator to eliminate the guesswork for long range shots. The hash marks on the bullet drop compensator allow the user to simplify long range shooting and guarantee accurate shots. This compensator is incredibly handy when taking humane shots on your chosen target. There is no room for guesswork when hunting living animals, and a BDC eliminates that guesswork.

Go Long

Long range shooting is not an easy thing to do. It is something that takes time, experience, and ammunition to learn to do efficiently. Placing long range shots on animals is even more challenging. The best long range hunting scopes aid in guaranteeing a good, precise, humane killing shot. Proper equipment gives new shooters an advantage, and part of that equipment is a good quality optic. Good luck!

  • Owner of, Boyd Smith is a major handgun enthusiast, and although he owns Glocks, he prefers the revolving wheel type. His go-to guns are a Smith & Wesson 642 Performance Center for carry and a Ruger GP100 in the nightstand biometric safe (he has kids). He loads both revolvers with old-school 148-grain Federal Gold Medal .38 wadcutters. It’s OK if you think he’s a wimp. Email him.

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