Re: What features do you want in a spotting scope.
Ok it's time to say thanks to Gonehuntingagain, STWsniper, abinok, Goodgrouper and Big 33 for giving me your input on what you like in a spotting scope.
Now an update on my search for a spotter:
I spent all day driving all over town looking at scopes and picking the brains of all the camera store employees (including 3 fine Bettys.) I tried out a number of scopes and found things like mirage and zoom power and the type of sunlight and the contrast of the thing being looked at mean alot when it comes to getting a clear image. But through it all I still feel that the Minox is going to do it for me. I was able to see the individual insulator rings extending from a large power pole at 1 mile. I could read words about the size of these on a product label in the store at about 60 feet.
I looked into price I saw on the website I found selling them and the $300 is without the eyepiece. The eyepiece is $110 so the whole thing is right about $410 and I can buy the other eyepices as I desire. It does come with a case and a camera adapter though.
As for tripods and tripod heads I will be buying a Bogen 3001 with the thumbscrew tightening joints on the lower leg sections and the multi angle adjustment on the top leg joints. $110
The head will either be a Bogen but with the pistol grip to the side or the Bogen "fluid pan". The fluid pan is a sealed grease filled bearing in both pan and tilt for a very smooth action when tracking moving things. The handle is very adjustable so it won't be hitting me in the throat all day. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] The sideways pistol is $120 if I remember right and the fluid pan is right at $100.
That will put me in fat city for spotting optics and support gear.
GRAVITY. It's not just a good idea. It's the LAW!