We could earn income from the merchandise obtainable on this web page and take part in affiliate applications. Study extra ›

Revealed Might 3, 2023 1:00 PM

When reviewing among the hottest rangefinders for bow looking, let me begin with slightly story. 5 years in the past, in the midst of a Colorado wilderness, I met the most effective elk hunter you’ve by no means heard of. The person’s eyes sank again into his head, his face weathered, and his again had an unnatural curve from too many seasons of toting an excessive amount of weight. Nonetheless, there he was, 5 miles off the trailhead, standing over his forty fifth bull elk.

He checked out me and stated, “Ten years in the past, I wouldn’t have killed this bull.” Then, he grinned and pulled an angle-compensating rangefinder from an adjunct pouch on his bino harness. “The bull was uphill,” he continued. “I guessed him for 36, and he was solely 22. Children have to learn the way good they’ve it. If I had this know-how all through my elk looking profession, I’d have 90 bulls as an alternative of 45.”

I laughed. He was appropriate about how fortunate bowhunters are to have good rangefinders that present correct yardage readouts no matter angle, climate, lighting circumstances, and so forth. As with most gear—like compound bows and bow releases—there are various choices within the bowhunting rangefinder area, and over time, I’ve used a variety of them. One of the best bowhunting rangefinders are ones you may rely on to give you the correct vary so you may ship a pointy stick via the lungs of your quarry.

How We Picked the Greatest Rangefinders for Bow Looking

I’ve used rangefinders that burn batteries like a truck pulling a trailer burns gasoline and people who require 4 or 5 clicks of the yardage readout button to get a variety that proved inaccurate. I’ve examined these with poor lenses and one specifically that, throughout a rainstorm, stopped working. I later found that the battery compartment lacked a seal, and water stuffed the within. Some carried out terribly in low mild and had lenses as inflexible as a pair of gasoline station sun shades.

You rely in your bowhunting rangefinder to carry out, and I wouldn’t ship you into the woods if I hadn’t dealt with and used every of the to-come fashions. Some had been examined within the whitetail woods, others at 12,000 ft within the Rockies.

The excellent news: All carried out and make a worthy subject companion. Right here we go.

I put a couple of of the highest rangefinders to the check to decide on the most effective of the most effective.

Greatest Rangefinders for Bow Looking: Opinions & Suggestions

Greatest Total: Leupold RX-FullDraw 5

Greatest Total

Leupold RX-Fulldraw 5 Rangefinder


  • Magnification: 6-power
  • Deer Vary: 900 yards
  • Options: Archery Angle Compensation
  • Weight: 7.5 ounces
  • Size: 3.8 inches


  • Flightpath know-how
  • Purple LED readout show
  • Fast vary readout
  • Local weather examined
  • Ergonomic
  • Waterproof


After I drew my coveted bighorn sheep tag, there was little question which rangefinder I used to be taking with me, and when my ram stepped out at a steep downhill angle, the rangefinder learn 61.5 yards. I didn’t doubt it for a second.

Not solely does the Leupold RX-FullDraw 5 present right-now yardage readouts, however I additionally applaud the adjustable pink LED brightness settings. The Flightpath know-how is a genius addition. After inputting your bow’s fps score, peep peak, and arrow weight, you get precise ballistics that can let you know in case your looking arrow will discover obstructions out to 85 yards. That overhanging tree limb is not a fear.

The rangefinder has an ergonomic housing, and its measurement makes it simple to deal with. Final Goal mode helps the laser lower via moisture to offer you an actual yardage readout even in inclement climate, and, like all Leupold RX rangefinders, this magnificence is waterproof.

Best Rangefinders for Bow Hunting of 2023, Expert Tested and Reviewed
This Leupold rangefinder is the most effective I’ve examined to date.

Greatest For Whitetail: Bushnell Broadhead

Greatest for Whitetail

Bushnell Broadhead Rangefinder


  • Magnification: 6-power
  • Deer Vary: 500 yards
  • Options: ARC Modes Common & Bow
  • Weight: 5.9 ounces
  • Size: 4.3 inches


  • 50 p.c bigger goal lens
  • +/- 1-degree Angle Vary Compensation
  • Auto-adjusting black-to-red reticle
  • .3-yard distance accuracy out to 150 yards
  • Sturdy


  • Not as compact
  • Not a very good crossover for the rifle crowd

Like a very good scope, a very good rangefinder ought to collect mild, and the readout inside needs to be crystal clear. That’s what you get with the Bushnell Broadhead, and I like the auto-adjusting black-to-red reticle. Bushnell fitted the rangefinder with an ActiveSync Reticle, which analyzes the background and offers a shade readout your eye will detect and have the ability to see immediately. This readout is instant and it pops into the glass.

Any rangefinder value its salt may have some type of angle compensation, and the Broadhead does. Bushnell calls it ARC Expertise, and it’s pretty much as good as marketed. While you’re 20 ft up a hardwood tree and a gagger steps into vary, this rangefinder offers the precise horizontal and line of sight distance. This offers the shooter with supreme confidence.

It’s exhausting to beat the readability of the totally multi-coated lenses, and colours actually pop, which issues when the sunshine is low, and also you’re attempting to decipher should you’re ranging that buck standing behind a tangle of the comb or the log six yards behind the buck. The rangefinder is priced proper and will get the job completed.

Greatest For Elk: Leica Rangemaster CRF 2400-R

Greatest for Elk

LEICA Rangemaster CRF Rangefinder


  • Magnification: 7-power
  • Deer Vary: 10 to 2400 yards
  • Options: Equal Horizontal Vary to 874 yards
  • Weight: 6.5 ounces
  • Size: 4.5 inches


  • Elevated magnification
  • Gentle
  • Sturdy
  • Weatherproof
  • Tremendous clear
  • Simple setup and operation


Weight issues within the elk woods—particularly should you’re looking in among the finest states to bag a monster elk—and this extremely purposeful handheld unit is mild as a feather and hard as a tank. The housing will take a beating and the rangefinder is water and dirt-repellent by way of the AquaDura coating. The Leica CRF 2400-R will tackle any setting and simply deal with Mom Nature’s worst moods.

Elk hunters want boosted magnification, and the 7-power optics with built-in diopter compensation are a win. This rangefinder produces the brightest, most clear photographs I’ve seen within the woods, and automated brightness management means the LED readout is rarely too shimmering or uninteresting.

Readouts are instant, and when elk looking and a giant bull is closing the gap via a maze of pines, you may’t beat the Quick Scan mode, which takes a brand new measurement each .5 seconds. I hate guessing and I don’t significantly recognize dropping a rangefinder from my eye to create pointless motion as a result of I lose the animal within the lens each time I depress the vary button.

One other wonderful function of the rangefinder is it’s an incredible crossover rangefinder. Many elk hunters bow and rifle hunt, and should you fall into this class, this rangefinder is a strong go-to.

Greatest Finances: Maven CRF.1

Greatest Finances

Maven CRF.1 Rangefinder


  • Magnification: 6-power
  • Deer Vary: 650 yards
  • Options: LOS/AC Angle Modes
  • Weight: 8 ounces
  • Size: 4.33 inches


  • Simple setup
  • Auto black/pink show
  • Fast yardage readouts
  • 5-yard minimal vary
  • Sturdy


  • Awkward construct
  • Not an incredible grip

There are inexpensive budget-style rangefinders available on the market. Nonetheless, when the distinction between placing meat on the desk and going residence with a sob story is commonly acquiring an correct distance to the goal, I like to recommend staying away from the acute funds rangefinders.

After I examined the Maven CRF.1, it offered readouts as shut as 5 yards. When a deer is instantly underneath my stand or a turkey wanders in entrance of my decoys and near the blind window, I don’t need to shoot low. Bowhunters typically have to shoot their 30- or 40-yard pin at a distance of 5 yards. Plus, the rangefinder will attain out on reflective objects to 2,400 yards, which makes it an incredible crossover rangefinder when the bow is put away and the rifle season rolls round.

Yardage readouts are among the quickest I’ve witnessed, and LOS (line of sight) and AC (angle compensation modes) imply should you’re astray, it was shooter induced. The optics are clear and vivid. Although I’m not a fan of the cumbersome entrance finish and slim again finish, the rangefinder matches properly into most rangefinder accent attachment circumstances and offers correct performance.

Best Rangefinders for Bow Hunting of 2023, Expert Tested and Reviewed
I used to be impressed by how properly the Maven CRF.1 carried out throughout my testing.

Greatest For Binocular Rangefinding: Zeiss Victory RF 10×42

Greatest for Binocular Rangefinding

ZEISS 10x42 Victory Rangefinder Binocular


  • Magnification: 10-power
  • Deer Vary: 11 to 2000 yards
  • Options: Angle compensation
  • Weight: 33.9 ounces
  • Size: 6.5 inches


  • Compact and lightweight
  • Zeiss T* Coating
  • Bluetooth synch with Zeiss Looking App
  • Fast yardage readout
  • Sturdy
  • Weatherproof
  • All-in-one system


A western bowhunter, I recognize the worth of toting a rangefinding binocular, and you may’t beat the readability, shade, sturdiness, and spot-on exactness of Zeiss’s Victory RF 10×42 rangefinding binoculars. That is the optic for you should you’re a mountain bowhunter who chases mule deer, elk, sheep, goats, and bears.

There is a bonus to having an all-in-one bino/rangefinding system, and that benefit might be discovered when looking in huge rugged terrain. Zeiss’ T* Coating produces exceptional photographs regardless of the lighting circumstances. With a balanced platform that requires a two-handed operation, you may get on the right track and purchase an correct vary, even on distant targets, in seconds.

The ten-power magnification makes trying over expansive sections of grime simple, and the attention aid is second-to-none. Bowhunters don’t want this function, nevertheless it’s nice should you hunt with a vertical bow and revel in taking a high-powered rifle into the excessive nation as properly. You’ll be able to sync your RFs to the Zeiss Looking App and obtain customized ballistics for as much as 9 rifles or one rifle and numerous ammunition combos.

Bonus: The yardage readout button is about in entrance of the bridge on the precise tube, which is a perfect location.

Best Rangefinders for Bow Hunting of 2023, Expert Tested and Reviewed
I discovered these rangefinder binoculars to come in useful when out within the subject on tough terrain.

Greatest For Crossbow: Vortex Diamondback HD 2000

Greatest for Crossbow

Vortex Diamondback HD 2000 Rangefinder


  • Magnification: 7-power
  • Deer Vary: 1400 yards
  • Options: HCD/LOS Modes
  • Weight: 7.6 ounces
  • Size: 4.1 inches


  • Glorious magnification
  • Tripod adaptable
  • Sturdy
  • Weatherproof
  • Compact
  • ArmorTec lens safety


I do know many crossbow hunters camp out in floor blinds ready on recreation with their bow propped on a set of taking pictures sticks. Because of this, this tripod-adaptable rangefinder will get the award as the most effective for crossbow hunters. While you’re in a floor blind, and your horizontal bow is on a set of taking pictures sticks, you may arrange a tripod, loosen the top, and shortly swap from scope to rangefinder with out creating in-the-blind motion.

I like the five-yard minimal vary. As a result of many of the greatest crossbows at the moment sport yardage-calibrated scopes that permit the hunter to achieve out, the 7-power magnification, as does the readability of lenses, turns out to be useful.

A superb go-to rangefinder for bowhunters, crossbow goers, and rifle hunters, the Diamondback 2000 is hard as nails. It offers reflective yardage readouts to 2,000 yards and readouts on deer-sized recreation to 1,400 yards. HCD (Horizontal Part Distance) and LOS modes provide choices, and the rangefinder has a lifetime guarantee.

Most Sturdy: Sig Sauer Kilo3K

Most Sturdy

Sig Sauer KILO3K Laser Rangefinder


  • Magnification: 6-power
  • Deer Vary: 1,500 yards
  • Options: Angle compensation
  • Weight: 12 ounces
  • Size: 4.6 inches


  • Nice battery life
  • Extremely-durable
  • Fast yardage readout
  • Weatherproof
  • 5 vary modes
  • 5 goal modes


Rangefinders take a beating. I’ve dropped mine down rocky chutes, and a number of other occasions, after getting a variety, dropped the unit and let its wire attachment work. That’s advantageous, however the rangefinder typically smacks a tree or rock because it swings on the attachment wire. I even ran over a rangefinder (by accident) with my truck at elk camp, and that rangefinder was Sig’s Kilo3K. It didn’t part it in any respect.

Apart from being bulletproof, I like the ergonomics and the way properly the unit balances in my hand. The Kilo3K has 5 rangefinder modes, together with an Archery (ARCH) mode, which is my go-to. Ranges are spot-on, and every time you hit the vary button, the laser does its job and an instantaneous yardage readout pops into the reticle.

The rangefinder has Bluetooth pairing on your ballistic rifle nuts, and you may drop waypoints to the BaseMap app, a complicated digital mapping system. The glass high quality is superb and colours leap to life, and the pink OLED show is definitely seen. Models may be toggled between yards and meters and HyperScan offers 4 vary updates per second in scan mode.

What to Contemplate When Selecting a Rangefinder for Bow Looking

There are some issues to contemplate when on the lookout for a top quality rangefinder. First on the listing is angle compensation. In case you hunt wherever on the planet, you will want angle compensation. Don’t assume for a second that you simply don’t want angle compensation since you stalk pronghorn on the plains or hunt whitetail at shut vary from a treestand.

Subsequent on the listing is the benefit of setup. I’ve dealt with rangefinders that required a NASA pedigree to function, and also you don’t need that. Rangefinder setup needs to be easy.

Lastly, you need the rangefinder to be ergonomic and sturdy and have a speedy yardage return that reveals up properly within the reticle. That could be a pink flag should you hit the yardage button and don’t get an instantaneous return.


Q: What rangefinder is probably the most correct?

Most rangefinders above $250 will present an correct vary and permit for angle compensation so the archer is aware of their true vary to the goal. Most rangefinders are correct to inside +/- 1 yard to a sure distance; nevertheless, as the gap to the goal will increase, that +/- 1-yard readout could shift to +/- 3 yards or extra. Archers needn’t fret. Get an correct rangefinder to +/- 1 yard out to 100 yards, and also you’re prepared.

Q: Ought to a newbie use a rangefinder?

Whereas creating your instincts and woodsmanship is all the time a good suggestion, all archers ought to use a rangefinder. Archery is a recreation of inches, and also you need to know the precise distance to your goal. Your arrow isn’t coming off the string at 2,000 fps. As an alternative, most looking arrows are shifting at speeds between 270 and 315 fps, which suggests the drop of the arrow is magnified. Throughout observe periods, I sometimes guess the vary of my goal first after which verify the gap with a rangefinder.

Q: Do I would like a rangefinder for bowhunting?

For bowhunters, the rangefinder is a vital device. I’ve bow hunted throughout North America and have but to run right into a bowhunter that wasn’t carrying a rangefinder. You’ll be able to skimp out on some bowhunting gear, however a top quality rangefinder is a must have.

Q: How a lot does a rangefinder value?

Most high quality rangefinders will fall between $300 and $500, and this value vary needs to be the main focus for bowhunters. Rangefinders on this value vary may have some type of angle compensation, function high quality glass, affordable magnification, and supply speedy yardage readouts. There are lots of funds fashions you could find for underneath $200, however most won’t have angle compensation, which is a bowhunter’s greatest buddy, and because of this, I choose to avoid rangefinders which might be slightly too simple on the pockets.

Last Ideas on the Greatest Rangefinders for Bow Looking

My archery gear listing so as of significance goes bow, arrow, rangefinder. It’s simpler to be exact when the precise vary of your goal. You’ll be able to have the most effective sight, relaxation, and bow stabilizer, however should you don’t know the vary to your goal, your accuracy will wane considerably once you enhance distance throughout observe periods. For bowhunters, having an angle-compensating rangefinder—like one among these greatest rangefinders for bow looking—needs to be excessive on the listing of priorities.

Lastly, please don’t carry your rangefinder in your backpack or pocket. You need your rangefinder simply accessible, and with at the moment’s high quality bino harnesses and rangefinder attachment pouches, there is no such thing as a excuse for not having your rangefinder shut at hand always. Plus, with the rangefinder hooked up to the pouch and the pouch to the harness, you gained’t stroll off and depart it on that rotted stump. I’m talking from expertise.

Why Belief Us

For greater than 125 years, Subject & Stream has been offering readers with trustworthy and genuine protection of out of doors gear. Our writers and editors eat, sleep, and breathe the outside, and that keenness comes via in our product critiques. You’ll be able to rely on F&S to maintain you updated on the most effective new gear. And after we write a couple of product—whether or not it’s a bass lure or a backpack—we cowl the nice and the dangerous, so precisely what to anticipate earlier than you determine to make a purchase order.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *