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"Optics- what i listed will prob have to do"
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Dont sell yourself short. That leupold is a very good scope and will do everything you need it to do, and do it well. As long as its got target turrets you'll be fine.
As far as the caliber goes your going to get a lot of different oppinions. What you need to do is lay some parameters. Right now were sitting at 15 and under, targets up to the size of elk/moose out to 600yds. Maybe farther?
A 308win will work at that range, but it is MUCH easier with a round in the 7mmWSM and 300win mag class. So much so that I
personaly wouldnt even cosider it. I think a good starting place is the 7mmWSM shooting 160+ grain bullets, with the various 30cals being even better.
Do you reload? Do you care if factory <u>match quality</u> ammo is available? A muzzle brake
is almost mandatory to be able to spot you own hits. Any of the medium size cartridges in a 12-15lb gun with a MB will recoil about like a 243win. Some of them(VIAS) wont increase the noise to the shooter all that much. While some of them will considerably(OPS-Inc), but will provide slightly more recoil reduction.