Skills behind the binoculars are critical for an effective mountain hunt. You may occasionally run into animals while you’re on the move. But the best approach to locating game is by using binoculars and a spotting scope to your advantage. Buy the best glass you can afford (it’s not cheap) and put in a serious effort to make it swing the hunting season in your favor.
Here are four tips to help improve your glassing this season:
1. Keep it Clean
There is nothing worse than dirty glass. Fog, smudges and dirt will obstruct your vision and render the best glass all but useless in some cases. Carry your binoculars and spotting scope in high quality protective cases that keep them clean and safe in the field. Also keep a cleaning kit with a microfiber cloth and a small bottle of cleaning solution. Clean lenses make spotting easier and they also put less strain on your eyes.
2. Timing Your Efforts
Focus your glassing efforts on those times when animals are most likely to be on their feet. Of course this is highly dependant on weather and the time of year. But in many mountain hunting situations, this is the first and last couple hours of each day.
Moose and mountain goats often leave more wiggle room for spotting during mid-day. This is especially true for moose during the rut, when you can take advantage of calling. If you are using calls and animals are moving during the day, then adjust your schedule to match their most active hours. Otherwise, plan to spend those early and late hours behind the glass.
3. Play the Wind and Sun
The wind will alert game to your presence from a surprising distance. Make sure you use natural shelters and focus your direction on areas where wind will not give you away. In situations where you are viewing drainages and areas at long distances, wind become slightly less important but anything under a thousand yards means wind is a major factor.
The sun also plays into the equation. When you find an area worth glassing, consider where the sun will sit in the morning and evening. You can’t glass effectively with the sun directly in your eyes. Choose your vantage point based on where the sun will hit during glassing sessions.
4. Get Comfortable
Comfort is important here because you can last longer and keep eyes on the terrain without constantly shifting and resetting your position. Take the time to setup a comfortable sitting position with ample padding and a good angle on your neck. Laying down on a slight slope is nice for long periods of glassing. Using a tripod to keep your binoculars stable makes it possible to pick apart a landscape without shaking or moving. If you’ve never used your binoculars on a tripod, you don’t know what you’re missing.
For more information on hunting in British Columbia with Kawdy Outfitters, please explore the rest of the website. You can also contact Colin and Alisha for details or specific availability.
Written by Zach Lazzari
Zach Lazzari is a fly fishing guide and freelance writer. When he’s not fishing, Zach is chasing big game, upland birds and waterfowl in the Rocky Mountains and Northwest.