Ranging with a reticle?

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by KQguy, Sep 30, 2010.

  1. KQguy

    KQguy Well-Known Member

    Dec 7, 2007
    I was thinking about changing out my Nightforce reticle to one that I can range distances with.Just curious,what kind of accuracy can you expect ranging with a reticle?What would be the farthest distance you could range with and be trustworthy?I have a good Lazer rangefinder,but thought it would be a back up in case it failed out in the field.
    Looking for guy's who have done it enough to know how it works at distance's,of 300yds +/-,400yds +/-,500yds +/- etc.
  2. djtjr

    djtjr Well-Known Member

    Oct 28, 2008
    the Nightforce np-r1 reticle is great for doing that. at the ranges you mention its pretty easy but also depends greatly on the size of your game. For example the deer i hunt here in NY are much bigger bodied than the deer i hunt in TX if i dont know the size of the target or cant judge it accurately it will throw of the ranging formula. also the farther out you get the harder to bracket the game accurately and at distance any errors are obviously magnified due to the exponential drop experienced at range. all that said the Np-r1 is the best i have seen for reticle ranging and the only reticle i use because you never know. I have a swaro and it has gone down on me in the field and yes i did have spare bats but it didnt matter, it was a fluke and the swaro is awesome but it did happen to me.
    hope this helps

  3. angus-5024

    angus-5024 Well-Known Member

    Jan 22, 2008
    I can use a mill-dot to range accuratlly to 600 yards on a know target. BUT I MUST KNOW the EXACT size of the target . on game I can only feel comfortable to 400 yards if they stand really still and I'm using a really flat shooting round. Range finders are the way to go but as a backup Mill-DOT and NightForce NPR1-NPR-2 reticles work well. Look up ShooterReady.com. It is a valuable tool in learning how to mill-range.
  4. trevor73402

    trevor73402 Well-Known Member

    Nov 6, 2009
    It seems like people forget that just not so long ago there were NO laser range finders. People have been using scopes/recticles to range "targets" for a long time. Yes, this takes some practice and you have to familiarize yourself with the "target"" be it an animal or a steel plate. The above poster gave some good advice with the mention of the Shooter Ready program for your computer. Its good practice. Also, when at the range or in the field find your range first by using your recticle and only use your LRF as a backup to check yourself against rather than relying on the LRF.
  5. sscoyote

    sscoyote Well-Known Member

    Feb 26, 2003
    I get the opportunity to reticle-range many antelope, some mule deer and a few coyotes while coyote hunting every year, and have had very good luck to ~500yds. on antelope and about 80% on deer to about 400-500, and so far 100% on 2 coyotes at right around the 500-yd. mark.

    U can use any multi-stadia reticle with more than 1 point in it for reference from simple plex to Ballistic Plex to mil-dot. Go here and study the system-- www.ottllc.com/specialtypistols/sp20.pdf under Item C) Reticle Rangefinding
  6. LRSickle

    LRSickle Well-Known Member

    Jun 8, 2009
    I use the 27.78xheight(inches)/the # of mildots. It's surprising how hard it is to hold still enough to decide how many mildots the target spans.
    There's a formula for using MOA but I forget what it is. It's all on the mildot.com website.​

    You can get pretty good out to 6-700 yards. After that I have a hard time being accurate.​
  7. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

    Jul 29, 2004
    The problem as mentioned is knowing the size of your target.

    I am one of the "Old guys" that used them when we had nothing else and they worked well
    out to reasonable distances.

    The problem was that even the game was different sizes (I once had a realy nice 10 point
    deer that was well outside of his ears and while setting up for the shot a doe walked in
    front of him and that's when I realized that the buck was only about 60 pounds and I had
    guessed the distance based on his size which placed him almost a hundred yards further
    than he actually was).so I passed on the shot.

    On know targets Like a person they work well but on game it is a crap shoot.

    I still have and use mill dot scopes, but I like to use the mill dots or stadia lines to make shots
    that dont give enough time to crank the turrets, because I know where each dot is in yardage
    and can use the proper hold for distance to 1100 or 1200 yards. Beyond that I use the turrets
    or dont make the shot.

    With the advent of laser range finders there is no better way to range a target and make a
    one shot kill/hit because it does not care what size the target is only the distance.

    The mill dots are great backup but as long as you have a working range finder that's the way
    to go.

    Just my opinion.


    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

    Jan 31, 2008
    We have talked abouth this a few times here. its just not accurate enough. You need a range finder. The only way it works is if you have an abject of known size.

    For snipers there are tons and tons of known sizes to work with.

    For hunters there are not.