How Much Should You Spend on Hunting Optics?
By Robert J. Kaleta
One of my greatest challenges is to answer the question; “Why would I spend as much or more on my riflescope than as on my rifle?” This mindset becomes a matter of shooter education and unfortunately, lessons often learned the hard way by hunters while afield. Missing the opportunity at the trophy of a lifetime is usually a quick attitude adjustment about the true benefits of using good quality optics.
In my earlier days, I also struggled with the concept of handing over as much cash for a scope as for my firearm. However, I can attest that once you experience the benefits of quality optics, and the improvement of the experience while in the field, there is no turning back.
Let’s do a little soul searching. Many wouldn’t consider hunting Alaska without a pair of boots that cost less than $300. With hard use and abuse, those boots may last you three good years maximum. How about the costs associated with booking an outfitter, travel, ammunition, etc. on the hunt of a lifetime? My outfitter contacts continually see hunter’s show up in camp for such lifetime dream hunts with a $99 binocular. This client may have to spend the next 7-10 days glassing only to get a daily headache after the first few hours of use. Ultimately they end up borrowing the extra pair of the Vanguard Endeavor series that I left behind in camp. Then that hunt of a lifetime experience becomes an enjoyable, memorable and often successful venture. My favorite is the guy who will spend $2500-$3500 on a rifle to reduce a one-inch group to a half inch group. What will that extra half inch do for him on the side of a trophy bull during the last seconds of shooting light when he cannot even see the elk in his “bargain” riflescope?
What is my point? When you are deciding on your next purchase; start thinking of that riflescope or binocular as a 25-year investment and something to be handed down to the next generation hunter. Vanguard offers quality optics and a trusted warranty that can be obtained for a value-driven price point. We are able to accomplish this because we control the entire process from concept through design, manufacturing, assembly, and packaging. There is no middle man or outsourcing and rebranding. We are our brand. The cost for all those years of satisfaction and confidence afield suddenly make sense. The extra shooting time you gain each morning and evening and the enjoyment of a great viewing experience will easily justify the investment. Do some homework, compare models, ask questions and choose your optics wisely. You owe it to yourself to get the best value for your money and to enjoy your optics and your hunts.