Vortex provided an opportunity for the Gun Talk crew to partake in their Intro to Long-Range course.
You've completed the Vortex Edge Long Range Introduction course and are set to outfit your kit. What long-range shooting essentials do you need? It won't take much to get you shooting, but some necessities must be on your purchase list.
A rangefinder should be in every long-range shooter’s kit. Since you've completed the Vortex Edge training, stick with what you know. The Vortex Razor HD 4000 is on the high-end of what they offer, but it provides superior optical quality and performance. Plus, it boasts a reflective ranging capability out to 4,000 yards. If you plan on shooting longer ranges, you better know the distance with 100% certainty.
Underutilized? Probably not. A good sandbag like the Armageddon Railchanger Shmedium is found in every long-range shooter's kit. The fill in the bag is easily altered from its seven pounds. If you like a little flimsier bag, just take a bit of filler out. I've been running this bag for a couple of years and love its death.
The spotting scope is another piece of long-range equipment that shouldn’t be overlooked. Typically, folks are milling about with a spotter on a spotting scope when you set up on a station. A clear, clean spotting scope makes it easy to call impacts and misses. If you must deal with clouded glass, calling out shots becomes difficult. I prefer an angled spotting scope like the Viper HD for spotting during a long-range shoot, and I find an angled spotter more comfortable when standing around calling shots. The Viper HD is a 15-45X magnified optic that directly mounts to any Arca-Swiss head. That’s a big plus when I tell you what you need next.
I view tripods as a multi-use instruments. If you purchase the Ridgeview Carbon, you can expect a diverse bulletproof tripod. The head mount is Arca-Swiss to accept those accessories, but it also can house the new Vortex Viper HD you purchased. It extends to a whopping 73.8 inches and holds up to 22 pounds of heft. That means the Ridgeview holds your firearm or spotter or binos. Whatever you want the tripod to maintain, it's got you.
Tripods take some getting used to in the field or on the range, but when you get the system down, it's a piece of equipment you'll never leave home without. I grow more and more confident with each shot off my tripod.
You won't go wrong whether you select a Harris or Atlas bipod. Harris tends to run on the affordable side but still works great. I own quite a few of them, and they run like champs. Atlas bipods are rock solid. I run a couple of them religiously, but a bipod is a constant feature on my firearms.
Setting yourself on the path to executing the perfect long-range shot begins with signing up for a course, just like the Vortex Edge Intro to Long Range. The next spot is calming your newly found addiction and setting yourself on the path to selecting the right gear. As always, shoot safe and buy with confidence. – KJ
Kevin Jarnagin (KJ) hails from Oklahoma but quickly established Louisiana roots after joining the Gun Talk team. KJ grew up as a big game hunter and often finds himself in a different venture often. Whether it’s making his way to British Columbia for elk or training with pistols, KJ always seems to find a gun in his hands and adventure on his mind.