This is my first post on the forum but I'm not entirely new to long range shooting having done some varmiting w/ a Browning A-bolt Varmint in 22-250 w/ a B&L 4000 6x24 and a Sendero in 25-06 w/ a Leupold Vari-x III 4.5x14 Tactical.
However, I'm now setting up a long range deer & hog gun w/ a Savage 12BVSS in .300 WSM. My question is how much magnification do I need to shoot deer at 500 yards and tactical matches out to 700 yards (the max distance at my local range)?
Also, would you suggest a ballistic plex sort of retical or target knobs?
While I am by no means an expert on this, I would say your 4.5-14 is fine. It should provide plenty of magnification for shooting out to 1000 yds. I believe anything more is just up to you. Some people like higher power and some don't. Different strokes for different folks. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
I already have a 3.5x10 Vari-X III on another rifle. If I were to have Leupold put target turrets on it do you think it would be a good place to start? It wouldn't require much cash and the 4.5x14 could stay with the 25-06.
Sounds like a great place to start. Leupold makes a Tactical Milling Reticle (TMR) that could be installed in it also (i think they can put it into that scope) for increased flexibility. The TMR is simply a mil-dot system that has line stadia instead of the dots with .5 mil stadia also, as well as .2 mil stadia between the 4th and 5th mil stadia. Should provide for a great "ballistic" reticle system.
Unless you intend to only take shots beyond 100yds (i.e. no charging hogs at 25 yards nor horny bucks after you) you need to pay careful attention to the minimum magnification. On close in running animals the scopes field of view at low power is really important. I would not go any higher than the 4.5 and feel comfortable at under 100yds on fast moving targets. Of course at the moment I am out of practice on fast moving targets and restrict myself to slow moving turtles and miss them half the time.
Think about your hunting style and where you will hunt. You have advice from others on the high end magnification