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Joined: 03/10/2008
Posts: 10
Bear Gun Scope Question

I have a .416 Remington that I will use on a grizzly and black bear hunt in Alaska in 2011.

I've talked with several folks who have done this hunt. The prime hunting time is right before dark, and so a scope that can operate in low-light situations is critical. Also a scope with an illuminated reticle is a huge advantage, as at that time of the evening your dark colored reticle "dissapears" when it is held up to the black blob of a bear.

I was thinking about getting a Swarovski Z6i 1.7-10x42mm scope.

However I was recommended getting a scope with a larger objective, a Swarovski 2-12x50mm, and then just hunting on the lower magnifications (2x) because most shots are within 100 yards, and many shots within 50 yards. His reasoning is that a larger objective will be better in these low light conditions.

Any opinions?

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Location: Upper Peninsula of Michigan
Joined: 01/13/2007
Posts: 368
Bear Gun Scope Question

The 416 is not my idea of a long range rifle so I do not see any advantage to scope that goes beyond about seven or eight power. If it were me, I would put a good 1-4X or 1.75-6X scope on that rifle. Leupold makes a 1-4X with the illuminated reticle. You get a good field of view at low power if you need to take a fast, close shot.

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Joined: 03/10/2008
Posts: 10
Bear Gun Scope Question

As I stated in my earlier post, I know that I don't need high magnification power with this scope, since shots on this bear hunt are within 50-75 yards. But low-light performance is the critical factor here, since most shots take place just before dusk.

The Swarovski Z6 2-12x50mm has a field of view at 100 yards of a whopping 63 feet! And the Swarovski Z6 1.7-10x42mm has a field of view of 75 feet. These Z6 scopes are amazing technology.

By contrast, a Leupold VVX-7 1.5-6x24mm has a field of view at 100 yards of 62.1 feet.

So by going with the Leupold with a smaller objective I give up field of view, not gain it.

My question is, if I keep the 2-12x50mm Swarovski cranked down to low-minimum magnification power, will the bigger objective scope give me better low-light performance over the 42mm objective? Because some of the folks that I have talked to about this hunt say the bigger objective Z6 makes sense here.

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Location: Upper Peninsula of Michigan
Joined: 01/13/2007
Posts: 368
Bear Gun Scope Question

I have used the Leupold scopes extensively and have never had any problem with field of view or light gathering. Having an illuminated reticle would eliminate any problems with seeing the crosshairs, as would buying the heavy duplex reticle. I have the Leupold 1.76-6X w/heavy duplex on my bear rifle and love it!. To answer your question abour light gathering between the two scopes you are considering, yes the 50mm would gather more light than a 24 mm, BUT how much benifit you derive depends on what power you have the scope set on. Divide the objective diameter by the power setting. any number over about 4.5 is more light than the human eye can use. Generally, any good scope will provide enough light within LEGAL shooting hours.

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Location: Nevada
Joined: 02/07/2009
Posts: 73
Bear Gun Scope Question

Take your bow and eliminate the scope quandry alltogether!! lol

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Location: Northern Minnesota
Joined: 07/08/2007
Posts: 325
Bear Gun Scope Question

Unless you plan on taking shots over 100 yards I would get a red dot with 42mm objective. It is the best sight I have found for bear.

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3207
Bear Gun Scope Question

A .416 Remington? How big do you think the bears are up here?

If you're that worried about low-light visibility of your reticle, Trijicon makes scopes with an illuminated dot or triangle at the crosshairs. It's not Swarovski, but you won't have a problem seeing the reticle.

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