Few cartridges are as popular in the big game hunting community as the .300 Winchester Magnum. This high-powered bottleneck cartridge is a versatile and effective hunting instrument perfect for taking down game of all sizes, even massive deer, elk, or other larger animals. But it’s also a popular choice for sniping and target shooting because it maintains its accuracy over great distances.
Naturally, you’ll want an excellent optic to pair with your .300 Win Mag rifle to make the most of this cartridge’s distance and power. To that end, let’s take a closer look at the best .300 Win Mag scopes on the market today – we bet you’ll find at least one optic that will be a perfect fit for your firearm.
What to Consider When Buying a Scope for .300 Win Mag
Before buying any of the scopes below, you’ll want to consider a few major factors. Keep these factors in mind when browsing through other optics as well, as they can help you separate the best hunting scopes for .300 Win Mag rifles from subpar picks.
Always choose rifle optics that have multicoated lenses and otherwise high-quality construction standards. The quality of the lenses will affect the clarity and sharpness of the light that reaches your eye; the better the light is, the more accurate you’ll be when you take your shot.
Similarly, make sure that the lenses are multi-coated for durability and scratch resistance. Nothing can ruin your scope faster than sand or dirt wearing down the surface of your shooting glass after just a few hunting trips.
Windage and Elevation Turrets
You’ll also want to look for a scope that has high-quality windage and elevation adjustment turrets. Most of your shots will require compensation for these variables. Some of the best turrets offer both tactile and audible feedback with every click, so you can make your adjustments without having to look at the turrets or take your eye off your target.
Also look for turrets that come with zero stop or locking functionalities. These can help you quickly zero windage and elevation in an instant or prevent the turrets from being jostled around if you move to a new position.
Since a lot of .300 Win Mag users take down big game at long distances, it’ll also help to find an optic that has parallax adjustment controls. Some scopes offer rings near the magnification control and optical lens to compensate for parallax, when others may have a separate turret opposite the elevation turret to do the same job.
Lastly, always consider durability when selecting a new optic. The best rifle scopes for .300 Win Mag rifles will be weatherproof and therefore resistant to all forms of inclement weather, including rain, fog, or even shock damage from dropping the optic when setting it up on your rifle. This is necessary if you plan to take your scope and rifle into the field to hunt.
What Magnification Do You Need Based on Shooting Distance?
As a cartridge designed for hunting and long-distance sniping, the .300 Winchester Magnum is a perfect cartridge for hunting 95% of common game species throughout the world. Because it has high energy efficiency and can shoot flat, this is also fantastic for hunting dangerous game like bears, African plains game such as lions, and other large animals that might shrug off or survive smaller cartridges.
Furthermore, the .300 Winchester Magnum is used for bench rest shooting competitions and is even a favorite cartridge for many marksmen, especially in the US military. Given all these factors, your maximum effective range with a .300 Win Mag cartridge will be about 1200 yards or 1100 m. Note, of course, that you can still use this cartridge at sub-1200 yard ranges with maximum bullet velocity and stopping power.
With that in mind, you’ll want to target optics that have magnification powers of at least 10x. You can follow the rule of thumb that each magnification power increases your accuracy range by a hundred yards or so. Therefore, a magnification range of 12x is even better, but skilled marksmen may be able to hit their targets with 10x instead.
The magnification you need will also increase depending on the size of your target. The smaller your game target or bullseye (if shooting in a competition), the more magnification you need to take your shot accurately.
Any magnification can be used with this cartridge for hunting game at closer ranges, of course. But keep in mind that using a .300 Win Mag rifle at sub 500 yards or so is somewhat defeating its purpose.
The 5 Best Scopes for .300 Win Mag
Ready for some examples of the scopes described above? Fortunately, we’ve collected five of the best scopes for .300 Win Mag rifles. Let’s get started!
1. Athlon Optics Argos BTR Gen2 6-24×50 FFP Riflescope
Athlon Optics’ BTR Gen2 scope is a fantastic choice for any .300 Win Mag rifle users. Just look at the magnification range available here: it goes from 6x all the way up to 24x, making it perfect for the long-distance shooting the cartridge was designed for the first place.
Additionally, it comes with a 50 mm objective lens, ensuring that it will collect plenty of light to provide you with an optimal sight picture no matter how far away your target is. Add to that a first focal plane reticle that will automatically adjust its size is on the magnification power and you have an excellent hunting optic for hitting targets at greater distances.
But the scope is also worthwhile for other features, like multiple coatings on the optics to boost light transmission and a precision zero stop system for the windage and elevation adjustment turrets. In a nutshell, this feature lets you lock down the zero position and dial it back in an instant: perfect for hunters who need to make rapid adjustments on the go.
Of course, the scope is totally waterproof and weatherproof, so it’s ideal for taking into the field no matter what the inclement weather looks like. An additional parallax adjustment knob will allow you to eliminate this variable when using the optic, and your .300 Win Mag ammunition, at their maximum effective ranges.
- Has excellent lenses with phenomenal light transmission
- Has high-quality windage, elevation, and parallax adjustment turrets, plus a zero stop system
- Has the ideal range of magnification values for .300 Win Mag ammunition
- Comes with an FFP reticle for accurate shooting at a distance
- The reticle has an illuminated center and crossline to further assist with accuracy at long distances
- The FFP reticle is a little hard to get used to
- A little heavy at 30.3 ounces
Overall, this optic is a high-quality piece of equipment that’s perfect for long-distance hunting expeditions and for combining with your .300 Win Mag ammunition. Although it’s a little pricier than some other optics, it’s far from the most expensive.
2. Vortex Optics Viper HS-T 4-16×44 SFP Riflescope
Vortex Optics is one of the most well-known optics manufacturers in the industry, and their Viper HS-T SFP rifle scope is a top choice for .300 Win Mag users.
For starters, it comes with two different reticle choices and two different magnification ranges. Both reticles are excellent for .300 Win Mag shooting at long distances, though the VMR-1 MRAD reticle will be a little better for target shooting or precision hunting if you’re already used to those types.
The two magnification ranges available are 4-16x with a 44 mm objective lens and 6-24x with a 50 mm objective lens. In our opinion, both of these setups will work, but the latter is best if you want to really maximize your enjoyment of your .300 Win Mag cartridges and hunting rifle. The larger objective lens will also assist by providing you with extra hunting light to ensure you make an accurate shot.
Aside from these factors, the scope is also a great choice thanks to its fully multicoated and low dispersion lenses. Featuring additional “Armortek” coatings, these lenses are built to last and will ensure excellent light transmission for years to come.
We also really like the target-style turrets. These offer finger adjustable and audible clicks with each adjustment, so you can compensate for windage and elevation without taking your eye off the target. An additional parallax turret lets you compensate for this variable at long ranges.
Finally, the scope benefits from weatherproofing and a fast-focus eyepiece. With this eyepiece, you’ll be able to quickly and properly adjust the SFP reticle to your eye. That’s a good thing, as the reticle will not change sizes with the different magnification ranges.
- Has an easy to understand SFP reticle, even if it isn’t as accurate a long distances
- Comes with quality turrets, including a parallax turret
- Lenses are designed for quality and durability
- Has two types of reticles and magnification ranges, both suitable for .300 Win Mag cartridges
- Expensive compared to other .300 Win Mag scopes
Overall, the Viper HS-T is a good scope for .300 Win Mag rifles through and through. If you can spare the scratch to purchase it, it should last for years to come and provide excellent performance and accuracy enhancements upwards of 1000 yards.
3. Leupold Mark 5HD 5-25x56mm Riflescope
Leupold’s Mark 5HD riflescope is a quality choice for .300 Win Mag rifles in part because of its magnification range. It can magnify up to 25x, so it’ll certainly be useful for hitting distant or even small targets upwards of 1200 yards. It features a streamlined FFP H59 reticle that lacks a lot of cluttering hash marks or other junk. Hunters that need to hit very distant targets that appear small in the glass will appreciate this reticle design.
The Mark 5HD scope is also excellent because of its turrets, which are low profile and offer visual and tactile feedback. While the turrets are not marked with values, you shouldn’t easily get lost as you adjust them because of these feedback forms.
It’s also a very durable and long-lasting optic, featuring weatherproofing and a matte finish that will enable you to keep your stealthy location a secret since sunlight won’t flare off its surface. Eye relief could be a little better, as it maxes out at 3.82 inches, and you’ll have to keep this in mind since .300 Win Mag rifles can have quite a bit of kick with each pull of the trigger.
Lastly, the Mark 5HD comes with Leupold’s proprietary Twilight Light Management System. In a nutshell, this collects about another 10 minutes of shooting light at the beginning and end of each day: an ideal benefit for hunters who want to take advantage of animal activity in these time frames.
- Has extra light transmission capabilities
- Great optic lens design
- Both turrets offer tactile and audible feedback
- Matte finish and durable construction
- Easily the most expensive optic on the market for .300 Win Mag rifles
- No markers on windage or elevation turrets
Leupold’s Mark 5HD is the best Leupold scope for .300 Win Mag overall. However, it is also one of the most expensive scopes to purchase and will only be worthwhile if you believe you’ll use the optic regularly for years to come.
4. Burris Veracity 5-25x50mm Hunting Riflescope
This somewhat pricey optic from Burris is nonetheless a great choice for .300 Win Mag users due to its magnification range and wide, 50 mm objective lens. The lens is coated multiple times and is crafted from high-quality optical glass, which provides fantastic clarity and brightness and lasting durability at the same time.
Furthermore, Burris has constructed this scope with precision gauging and hand-fitted internal pieces. As a result, switching between magnification settings should be smooth and consistent no matter what and regardless of any shock or vibration. That’s an excellent benefit for .300 Win Mag rifle users, as this cartridge can produce significant recoil.
Naturally, this long-distance optic comes with windage and elevation turrets and a side-mounted parallax turret to adjust for the variable from 50 yards to infinity. The optic overall is weatherproof and built to last.
The only real downside, aside from its somewhat expensive price, is the lack of markings on windage and elevation turrets. But since they offer tactile feedback, you shouldn’t have trouble keeping place of where you are even if you make adjustments without looking at the turrets.
- Has quality turrets for windage, elevation, and parallax
- Large objective lens offers fantastic light collection and a great field-of-view
- Good range of magnification values for .300 Win Mag rifles
- Durable and built to last
- Windage and elevation turrets are not marked
- A bit pricy
Burris’ Veracity rifle scope is a great choice for .300 Win Mag rifles due to its durability and the top-tier quality of its glass and interior lens components. Add to that an easy-to-reach parallax adjustment turret and you’ve got a solid optic for a variety of hunting or target shooting needs.
5. Vortex 4-16×44 Diamondback Tactical FFP Riflescope
Vortex Optics’ next scope for .300 Win Mag rifles is this Diamondback variety, which comes with magnification settings between 4x and 16x. The upper range is great for reaching the maximum performance range of .300 Win Mag cartridges on average, while the lower magnification settings will be great if you want to use your rifle for close to medium-range hunting or target shooting.
Regardless, this Vortex scope for .300 Win Mag comes with a quality first focal plane reticle that will adjust its size and hash marks as you change magnification settings. The 44 mm objective lens benefits from multiple coatings to improve light transmission and durability. With 3.8 inches of eye relief, this scope is just at the edge of what we would consider acceptable for an optic paired with .300 Win Mag cartridges.
The scope overall is made of aircraft-grade aluminum and comes with windage, elevation, and parallax adjustment turrets: perfect for ensuring you can hit shots even at great distances. Perhaps most important, the reticle is etched directly onto the glass; this eliminates the possibility that it might jostle around or vibrate with each pull of the trigger.
Swapping between magnification settings will also be easy thanks to the precision glide erector system, which facilitates a smooth transition between zoom factors each and every time.
- Has a very versatile range of magnification powers
- Lenses are multicoated and high-quality
- Reticle is etched on the glass for increased stability
- Very durable and has a hard-anodized finish on the exterior
- Includes a precision glide erector system to facilitate smooth magnification swapping
- Comes with a sunshade, lens covers, and lens cloth
- Eye relief could be a little better
- No zero-stop reset functionality for the turrets
All in all, this .300 Win Mag optic is a consistent and reliable piece of equipment that’s perfect for general hunting use or target shooting alike. It may also be the best .300 Win Mag optic for relatively close range hunting thanks to its magnification range.
As you can see, the above five scopes are perfect fits for .300 Win Mag rifles and ammunition. But be sure to check out our .300 Win Mag scope recommendations in even more detail before making your decision. For more information or questions about how we chose these rifle scopes, contact us today!