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  • Post last modified:September 15, 2023
reloading model 70 rifle

Here are some of the best rifle scopes for Winchester Model 70. We've tried many optics in the past, some are good and some are ok.

To save your time doing research:

Leupold VX-R 3-9X40mm is the best 1000 yard & low light scope under $600

Vortex Optics Diamondback 3.5-10x50 has the best low light performance and for value

Nikon Buckmaster II 3-9X40 is the finest Japanese glass for a hunting scope under low light performance from dawn to dusk.

Let's see what else are there.

Our Best Picks [Most Popular Calibers]

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Leupold VX-R 3-9X40mm
  • Features:3-9X40mm, Fast focus eyepiece, Second Focal Plane, Motion Activated Illumination, Twlight Light Management System
  • Benefits:Lightweight, 1/4 MOA precision finger adjustment for repeatability, Absolute waterproof to survive the wild outdoors, Instant activation of FireDot illuminated reticle upon movement
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  • Features:3-9X50mm, 1/4 MOA adjustment, Dead-Hold BDC reticle, Shockproof, Capped turrets, Fast focus eyepiece
  • Benefits:Fast on target reticle focusing, Rugged body withstands heavy recoil and impact, Fast re-indexing of turret to zero(NO TOOL required), LIFE-TIME Warranty
BEST 12X w/ Low Light Performance
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  • Features:3-12X44mm, IPX7 Waterproof, Ultra-wide band lens coating, Bushnell Exclusive EXO Barrier protection, Second Focal Plane, Deploy MOA reticle
  • Benefits:Durable body repels water + dust & debris, High contrast images under low light, Side parallax adjustment for precision shooting, 1/4 MOA for finer adjustment, Finger adjustable turrets without tool
BEST FOR THE MONEY & Performance
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  • Features:3-9X40mm, Fully Multi-coated optical lens, Precision 1/4 MOA clicks, Spot-On Ballistic Match Tech, Nitrogen purged O-Ring seal
  • Benefits:Generous eye relief to keep eye safe from heaviest recoil hunting rounds, Shockproof performance, Ammo specific reticle aiming points for spot-on accuracy, Positive MOA turret clicks for quick re-zero, Great low light performance
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  • Features:3.5-10X50mm, Dead-Hold BDC, Shock Proof, Precision glide erector system, Second Focal Plane
  • Benefits:Ideal for big game & predator hunting, Bright image from dawn til dusk, Fast focus eyepiece for quick reticle focusing,Precision Holdover reticle great for hunting & long range shooting

270 and .30-06 are the most popular calibers for hunting with effective range up to 1000 yards using a 22" or 24" barrel while using precision ammo and 9X scopes.

Also Check Out: Best 1000 Yard Scopes Under $1000

Leupold VX-R 3-9X40 - Best Overall

leupold vx r 3 9x40 1

Why use this one - This 3-9X40mm 1" diameter tube scope with fiber optic FireDot reticle shines brightly and draws your eye and centers on the target for precise shot placement in any condition.

Affordable - This 40mm size objective lens is a great option than the 50mm size objective lens for similar performances at a way more affordable price.

Besides the obvious the Leupold's index-matched lens system. It also has revolutionized glass clarity & light transmission in a rifle scope using lead-free glass coatings.

Improved dawn to dusk image quality - Roughly 90% improvement in resolution and color fidelity resulting in crystal clear image under common hunting lighting conditions from dawn to dusk.

The ruggedness of this scope is the hallmark of every Leupold optics from the budget options to the $3000 ones. It's a great hunting scope made in the U.S. to be mounted on the Model 70 hunting rifle.

vortex crossfire II 3-9x50 scope

Why we picked this one - Vortex is one of the best scope makers in the industry. Crossfire II series scopes offer premium quality Japanese made glass when configured with a 50mm objective lens, this thing is great in low light conditions for hunting.

For a 30-06 rifle like the Model 70 bolt action rifle for hunting purposes, this 30mm tube size scope is shockproof providing hunters great durability out in the woods, which will last as long as you take good care of it.

Absolutely awesome warranty - Worst case scenario if you break it, Vortex's LIFE-TIME warranty will send you a new scope no cost to you (Or free repair)

Bushnell Nitro 3-12X44 - Best 12X For Low Light

bushnell hunting scope
Image Referenced Bushnell

Why pick Bushnell - The Bushnell Nitro series line of rifle scopes are made with ultra-wide band coating on the lenses and its prism glass to increase the light transmission for brighter and clear image.

It's Bushnell's high/mid range level scopes that comes with Deploy MOA reticle, which is quite capable and simple to use for accurate shot placement at most practical hunting distances up to 300 yards.

Improved durability - The exclusive EXO coating deters dirt, mud, water away from the lens to maintain image clarity. 

Enhanced low light performance - For Winchester Model 70 chambered in 270, 308 or 30-06. This is a great selection for anyone wants the capability of 12X and with great low light performance while spending less than $400.

Vortex Diamondback 3.5-10X50 - Best All-Purpose Hunting Scope

vortex diamondback 3.5 10x50 scope

Why pick this one - The Diamondback 3.5-10X50mm is ideal for big game hunting with the Model 70 rifle. Weather you're using it to shoot deers and other predator type animals at 100 yards or 400 yards... this thing's got your back.

Gather as much light as possible - The 50mm objective lens gives the shooter as bright as possible image through the scope for any hunting lighting condition with exit pupil perfectly around 5mm at 10X power.

Great hunting reticle - The Dead-Hold BDC reticle is the single best all-purpose hunting reticle intended for a wide range of hunting and long range applications.

In addition, the capped finger adjustable turret system makes it easy for 1/4 MOA / click adjustments in the field without any tool. For the price and performance this is great product from Vortex Optics.

Nikon Buckmaster II 3-9×40 BDC - Best For The Money

nikon buckmaster 2 3

Why pick this one - The Nikon Buckmaster lineup of rifle scope is the most popular hunting, muzzleloaders and precision shooting. It's the best for the buck for anyone looking for a great hunting optic with all the great features for the Winchester Model 70 type deer rifle.

Improved low light performance - Japanese made Nikon Buckmaster II features fully multi-layer coated lenses that allows max light transmission to hunt during dawn to dusk.

Enhanced turret system - Spring-loaded reset-to-zero 0.25 MOA / Click turrets helps shooter adjust with positive feedback even wearing gloves. 

Fully covered by warranty - Additionally, its fully backed by Nikon's NO FAULT warranty policy.

Applications Of The Model 70 Rifle

deer hunting

The Model 70 is the upgrade of the Model 54, which set the standard for commercial bolt action rifles on the market today.

The rifle is favored by hunters for the most part, and it was used during World War II and the Vietnam War.

model 70 USMC sniper rifle during war
Image Referenced pre64win

Today, modern production Model 70 can accept way better optics for long-range shooting and hunting. If you want to learn more please check out this great American Rifleman resource on the Military Model 70 here.

Pick The Right Scope

The maximum range of the model 70 depends on the caliber and the barrel length. Buy a scope that lasts and can also be swapped to another rifle.

Reason 1 - You can't trade in bad scope for a new scope like people do with firearms and maybe make some money back (unless money is never an issue for you)

Reason 2 - A great scope last long and you can use it on other rifles if you choose.

Magnification - 3-9X Is Great For Hunting

Typical hunting distances are between 100 to 300 yards.

A max 9-10X magnification scope gives the hunter enough image zoom to aim and track a target effectively.

As the magnification level goes up, the price of the scope goes up too. Therefore there is no reason for you to get a higher magnification if 300 yards is the most you will shoot for hunting purposes.

Objective Lens: 40-50mm Is Optimal

deer hunting scope objective lens
Image Referenced Havalon Knives

Objective lens size determines how much light a scope can capture, but not always. What's important is the exit pupil diameter, which we will cover in the next section.

Anything over 50mm and up is considered a large objective lens. When buying a scope for the Model 70 it's extremely important to figure out what cheek weld position and optic height position you need to shoot comfortably, then make sure there is enough height clearance between the objective bell and the rifle.

Exit Pupil - 7mm Is The Best For Low Light

deer hunt during dusk and dawn
Image Referenced Mile Hi Rafting

Exit pupil diameter = (the effective diameter of the objective lens / Magnification).

A 5-7 mm exit pupil is great for a hunting scope under low light conditions, but not in complete darkness.

The exit pupil diameter directly affects how much light the shooter will sees depending on the light condition. Because the pupil diameter of human eye changes based on the light condition.

Human Eye Pupil Size

  • Bright condition: 2 - 3mm
  • Low light condition: 7mm

Find a scope that has about 4 - 5 mm exit pupil diameter when the magnification is between 4-10X magnification so there is enough light transmission under low ambient light condition.

How you get a large exit pupil is based on the component combinations of objective lens diameter, focal plane lens diameter, and ocular lens diameter.

Eye Relief - Keep 4" To Prevent Scope Bite

Eye relief distance is between the outer surface of the eyepiece lens to the position where the exit pupil is formed (eyepoint).

Eye relief distance is an important specification to look at when you buy a scope. For perfect sight picture alignment without the dark scope shadows AND to keep your eye safe from scope bite.

4" eye relief distance is recommended and it's the most common. As the magnification increases the eye relief distances shorten.

Best Reticle Type For Hunting

deer hunting scope reticle crosshair

When picking a reticle type please ask these following questions:

  • Dоеѕ іt hаvе а сrоѕѕ, аn ореn сіrсlе, а dоt?
  • Will it obscure vital kill-zones of my target when I zoom in
  • First focal or Second focal?

Тhе сеntеr роіnt оf thе rеtісlе іѕ vеrу іmроrtаnt ѕіnсе іt’ѕ іndісаtіvе оf whеrе уоu іntеnd уоur bullеt ѕtrіkе tо bе.

Duplex Reticle is the most common among hunting rifles. Іt’ѕ ѕіmрlе, clean, аnd іѕ соnѕіdеrеd thе аll-рurроѕе rеtісlе.

It’ѕ a great rеtісlе fоr huntіng іn thісkеr bruѕh оr bіg gаmе huntіng whеrе уоu nееd рrесіѕіоn tо ѕtrіkе thе kіll zоnе.

Adjustment Turret - Keep It Simple For Hunting Applications

Hunting scope turret finger adjustable
Image Referenced GoHUNT

For a hunting rifle scope, it's okay to have a simple turret system instead of a tactical ballistic turret for rapid MOA adjustments.

The purpose of the turret is to zero the reticle on the scope. So a capped turret is great for hunting because of the low rate of firing...

What does that mean?

It means it isn't common for a deer hunter to rapidly send rounds down range compared to combat style long-range shooting where the shooter needs to rapidly adjust turrets for placing mission critical shots.

Wrap Up

The Winchester Model 70 model rifle is one of the greatest rifle ever built in the past (Also served in War), and it has continued to improve in its modern production models. It's accurate, durable and affordable for any hunters and long range shooters.

Whether you shoot 30-06, 7mm, 264 WN, 308 or other caliber platforms using the Model 70 featherweight, Super Grade, Sporter, Alaskan or others, this remains a hunting specific rifle up to 1000 yards, but for most hunting distances up to 300 yards we hope you find our selections of hunting rifle scopes.

Read More: Best Scopes For Hard Hitting Rifle Calibers [All Budget]