Best Leupold Scope for Mule Deer Hunting

In the field of optics, Leupold is one of the oldest and most popular brands. It is renowned for its top-performing optics that offer exceptional low light performance. And with over 100 years of being in the optics market, Leupold has grown to be the go-to optics brand for most hunters, competition and target shooters across the globe.

If you are a mule deer hunting enthusiast wondering what is the best optic for you, you should invest in a Leupold hunting scope. Mounting a Leupold scope on your hunting firearm will help make your hunting excursion competitive, fun and rewarding no matter your hunting skills. But with so many Leupold scopes available today, finding the right model can end up being a daunting task especially if you are a first-time buyer.

In this post, we have compiled a list of the best Leupold scopes for mule deer hunting to help you make an informed buying decision. We also have a detailed buyer’s guide that breaks down all you need to know to make the right purchase. But first, let’s have a look at the key attributes of Leupold scopes for mule deer hunting.

Important Features to Look in a Leupold Scope for Mule Deer Hunting

Whether you are a hunting beginner or a seasoned hunter, you will want to purchase a scope that offers reliable performance when you need it most. the Leupold scope you decide to purchase should have a decent magnification that suits you hunting range and environment. It should also have high-quality and clear glass that provide bright, crisp clear and tack-sharp sight pictures regardless of the hunting distance or lighting condition.

Construction-wise, the scope should be made using premium quality materials that offer long term durability. Since hunting sometimes involves trekking in unfamiliar terrains, the scope should be shockproof and recoil resistant to withstand rugged handling. Moreover, it should be  waterproof and fog proof for use even in heavy downpour.

Also make sure that you buy a scope that is simple to use, functional and light in weight.

7 Best Leupold Scope for Mule Deer Hunting – Our Top Picks

Whether you are purchasing your first scope for mule deer hunting or you are looking to get an upgrade, here are some of the best best Leupold scope for mule deer hunting you can choose from.

1) Leupold Mark 5 HD Rifle Scope 3.6-18x44mm

Leupold Mark 5 HD Rifle Scope 3.6-18x44mm

 

 

The Leupold Mark 5 HD Rifle Scope is a top-notch scope designed with hunters in mind. The scope has nearly every feature you need to take your mule deer hunting skills a notch higher and make the most out of your next hunting trip.

This rifle scope has a versatile 3.6-18x magnification range which helps you engage targets at both close and long distances. At close quarters, it offers a massive field of view that comes in handy when tracking fast moving game and with the high 18x zoom power, it provides fast and more accurate target acquisition at longer ranges.

Furthermore, the scope is made with convenience in mind. It has a lightweight design that gives you an added advantage in the hunting field. It also boasts a long eye relief for quick target acquisition and a 35mm main tube diameter that provides more room for windage adjustment and reticle movement.

Construction-wise, this Mark 5 HD rifle scope is built sturdily to offer long-term durability. It is designed to stand up to shock, recoil and hard impacts that you are going to experience in the hunting field. Moreover, it is sealed using advanced methods to keep moisture out and prevent internal lens fogging.

Above all, the scope comes with turrets that are features a push button zero lock, positive clicks and a revolution indicator for ease of use.

Features

  • 35mm main tube
  • First focal plane reticle
  • Scratch resistant lenses
  • Fast focus eyepiece
  • Side focus parallax adjustment
  • Fully waterproof and fog proof
  • Twilight Max HD Light Management System

Pros

  • Guaranteed for life
  • Versatile magnification range
  • Ultralight construction
  • Positive click adjustments
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Costly
  • Rings can be difficult to find in 35mm

2) Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9x40mm Riflescope

Leupold VX-Freedom 3-9x40mm Riflescope

 

 

The VX-Freedom 3-9x40mm is a heavy-duty and ultra-reliable rifle scope ideal for mule deer hunting and hunting in general. It offers unmatched accuracy at varying ranges and reliable performance in different hunting environments making it a favorite for every hunter out there.

With the 3-9x variable magnification, this rifle scope gives you the versatility to track game at varying ranges. It also features a large 40mm objective lens that provides bright and clear image views at every zoom range in addition to a large field of view even at highest magnification. To add on that, the scope features multi-coated lenses which reduce color aberrations for clear and sharp image views, and a Twilight Light Management System for visibility even in low light conditions.

Another remarkable feature about the scope is the robust construction. It is made from 6061-T6 aircraft-grade aluminum which guarantees greater strength and durability. Furthermore, it is waterproof and fog proof to offer reliable performance in the field, in all weather conditions. Other noteworthy features included are scratch-resistant lenses, 1/4 MOA finger click adjustments and a generous eye relief.

Features

  • Decent 3-9x magnification
  • Scratch resistant lenses
  • Twilight Light Management System
  • Waterproof and fog proof
  • Adjustable windage and elevation
  • 1/4 MOA finger click adjustments
  • Multi-coated lenses
  • Aircraft-grade aluminum construction

Pros

  • Amazingly affordable
  • Lightweight design
  • Clear glass
  • User-friendly precision adjustments

Cons

  • Can be difficult to mount on some rifles
  • Cannot reset to zero after sighting in

3) Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope

Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope

 

 

Mule deer hunting gets better when you use a good quality optic like the VX-3i 3.5-10x40mm Riflescope. The scope has an adjustable magnification that spans up to 10x and it works well in virtually any hunting environment.

Leupold scopes are known for their rugged durability and this is clear in this 1-inch scope. It is crafted with 6061-T6 aircraft grade aluminum and punisher tested to offer a lifetime of rugged performance even under heavy recoil. Better yet, it is 100% waterproof, fog proof and shock resistant to endure anything nature throws at it.

This rifle scope comes with a duplex reticle that stays visible and accurate even in low light settings. Furthermore, it has a Matte finish to reduce glare when hunting under direct sunlight. It also features DiamondCoat 2, an ion-assist lens coating that optimizes light transmission and a Twilight Max Light Management System that lets you see the target in fine detail even in extremely low light settings.

Above all, this optic has a lightweight design that enhances portability.

Features

  • 1-inch main tube
  • Matte finish
  • 100% waterproof, fog proof and shock proof
  • Twilight Max Light Management System
  • 6061-T6 aircraft grade aluminum housing
  • DiamondCoat 2 ion-assist lens coating
  • Duplex reticle
  • 1/4 MOA finger click adjustments

Pros

  • Clear glass
  • Precise turret adjustment
  • Exceptional low light performance
  • Light and portable

Cons

  • Turrets lack a zero stop and are not zero resettable

4) Leupold VX-3i 4.5-14x40mm CDS Riflescope

Best Leupold scope for Mule Deer Hunting

 

 

If you are in the hunt for the best Leupold scope for mule deer hunting at long distances, this is it. It has a variable magnification that spans out to 14x to help you reach longer distances without adding ounces.

Leupold designed this riflescope to offer superb optical performance. It has a DiamondCoat lens coating that enhances light transmission for brilliant and clear image views. In addition to that, it boasts Twilight Max Light Management system that offers improved image brightness, clarity and color contrast in poor light conditions like dawn or dusk.

To complement the unmatched optical system, this optic also features a solid and rugged 6061-T6 aluminum housing that is tough enough to endure anything you throw at it. Also noteworthy is the proprietary gas filling that delivers reliable waterproof and fog proof performance and a Twin Bias Spring erector system that gives the scope more holding force to stand up to recoil.

Furthermore, this rifle scope is parallax free from 50 yards to infinity. It also has a generous eye relief for rapid target acquisition and an adjustable objective for image focusing and parallax elimination.

Features

  • Waterproof and fog proof
  • 1-inch mono-piece main tube
  • Capped, finger-operated turrets
  • Fully multi-coated optics
  • Custom dial System, CDS target turrets
  • Twilight Max Light Management system
  • Twin Bias Spring erector system

Pros

  • Lightweight and well balanced
  • Ultra-clear optics
  • Superb light transmission
  • Generous eye relief
  • Parallax free from 50 yards to infinity

Cons

  • Turrets are not zero resettable

5) Leupold VX-6HD 3-18x50mm Riflescope

Best Leupold scope for Mule Deer Hunting

 

 

Next on our list is the VX-6HD 3-18x50mm Riflescope. The wide zoom range in this scope makes it ideal for hunting even at extended  ranges in any environment. With the 3x magnification, you will be able to navigate brush and timber situations with ease, then ramp up to 18x for any backcountry landscape.

This rifle scope is made with ease of use in mind. It has a free CDS elevation dial that eliminates the need for holdovers and ballistic calculations to simplify long range shots. Better yet, it features a removable throw lever for quick and simple magnification adjustment, without changing you shooting position. Also, this scope has an illuminated FireDot duplex reticle for easy and more accurate aiming in low light situations.

In terms of construction, this Leupold scope is built to offer unmatched durability. It is sturdy enough to stand up to any punishment you subject it to ad offer you innumerable years of use. Moreover, it is fully waterproof, fog proof, shockproof and guaranteed to perform for life.

Features

  • 30mm main tube
  • 3-18x magnification range
  • Twilight Max HD Light Management system
  • Free CDS elevation dial
  • Waterproof, fog proof and shockproof
  • Removable throw lever
  • FireDot duplex reticle

Pros

  • Compact, lightweight and portable
  • Illuminated reticle
  • Very clear glass
  • Superb low light performance
  • Good eye relief

Cons

  • Not budget-friendly

6) Leupold VX-5HD Rifle Scope 7-35×56

Best Leupold scope for Mule Deer Hunting

 

 

Another best Leupold scope for mule deer hunting on our list is the VX-5HD 7-35×56 Rifle Scope. This rifle scope is your ideal choice for intermediate and extreme long range hunting.

It boasts a magnification range from 7x to 35x. With this broad magnification range, this optic will help take your hunting skills to the next big level. To complement the super wide magnification, the optic also has a large 56mm objective lens which collects as much light as possible to deliver bright image views at every zoom range. It also provides the much-need large field of view for quick target scanning.

This rifle scope brings to the table a Twilight Max HD Light Management system that delivers exceptional image quality even in critically low light settings. It also features an intuitive Impact-14 reticle ideal for long range applications and a generous eye relief to keep your eye safe from high recoiling rifles.

Above all, the scope has a 34mm main tube that is 100% waterproof, fog proof and shockproof to take in any beating and withstand rugged handling.

Features

  • Twilight Max HD Light Management System
  • 34mm main tube
  • Intuitive Impact-14 MOA reticle
  • Fully waterproof, fog proof and shockproof
  • Powerful and versatile 5:1 zoom ratio
  • Zero Lock CDS-ZL2
  • Matte finish

Pros

  • Excellent versatility in different environments
  • Generous eye relief
  • Great low light performance
  • Unmatched clarity

Cons

  • Expensive but worth it

7) Leupold VX-R Patrol 3-9x40mm Rifle Scope

Leupold VX-R Patrol 3-9x40mm Rifle Scope

 

 

 

Last but not least we have the VX-R Patrol 3-9x40mm rifle scope. Whether you will be hunting mule deer in thick timber or open plains, this rifle scope got you covered.

It features a variable 3-9x magnification that offers great versatility in different environments. At close distances, it provides a spacious field of view for quick target locations. On top of that, it provides rapid target acquisition for distant targets thanks to the high 9x magnification. It also optic boasts a generous eye relief that aids in quick target acquisition and ensures comfortable glassing with or without eyeglasses.

Leupold made this scope with hunters in mind. It has an illuminated FireDot TMR reticle with 8 different settings for use in different lighting environments. Moreover, it features a lightweight construction for convenient portability and with the Twilight Light Management System, you are guaranteed of crisp and bright images from sunrise till sunset.

To top it all, the scope is punished tested to offer a lifetime of reliable performance in any weather condition even under the harshest recoil.

Features

  • 100% waterproof, shock resistant and fog free
  • Twilight Light Management System
  • 30mm main tube
  • Aircraft-quality aluminum housing
  • Motion sensor technology
  • 3-9x magnification range

Pros

  • Illuminated reticle
  • Long eye relief
  • Compact and lightweight design
  • Bright optics even in dim light
  • Easy to operate

Cons

  • Field of view not wide-angle

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Best Leupold scope for Mule Deer Hunting Buyer’s Guide

Here is what you should look for when shopping around for the best Leupold  scope for mule deer hunting.

Magnification

Magnification is the first thing you should thing about. In most cases, the ideal magnification power will be determined by your hunting distance and environment. A model with 3-9x magnification range will be more ideal for close to medium range hunting in thick timber environment. On the other hand, you will require more than 10x magnification to hunt at longer distances in large and open fields.

Objective Lens

Mule deer hunting and hunting in general calls for a scope with a large objective lens. The larger the diameter, the more light the scope gathers for bright and clear image views. A big objective lens also provides a wide angle field of view that every hunter needs for quick and easy target location.

Eye Relief

If you are using a heavy recoiling rifle, ensure that you get a scope with a long amount of eye relief. For anyone new in the optics market, this is the furthest distance your eye should be from the scope. Long eye relief shields your eye from high recoiling calibers and aids in quick target acquisition. Whether you wear eyeglasses or not, ensure that you choose a scope that has more than 3.5-inches eye relief.

Reticle

Another feature you should consider is the type of reticle the scope has and the plane it is placed. For most hunters, a duplex reticle is sufficient for hunting in most environments at close and medium ranges. However, if you will be hunting mule deer at long ranges, it is best to go with a Mil-Dot or any other long range reticle.

When it comes to choosing between a first focal plane and a second focal plane, this will largely depend on your individual preference. But it’s best to get a FFP reticle if you intend to chiefly use the scope for long range hunting.

Weight

Weight is the other important feature you should consider when choosing the best Leupold scope for mule deer hunting. A low weight scope will be easy to maneuver with in the field as you search for game. Additionally, light scopes are simple to mount, easy to use and more accurate.

Best Leupold Scope for Mule Deer Hunting FAQs

  • Which is better 30mm or 1-inch scope?

If low weight is what you are looking for in a scope, 1-inch scopes tend to weigh less than 30mm models. However, 30mm tubes offer larger internal adjustment range which makes them ideal for long range hunting and shooting.

  • Are Leupold scopes worth the money?

Absolutely. Leupold scopes are designed to offer long-term durability so you get great value for your money. Leupold scopes also harbor high-quality features ideal for use in different applications.

  • Is Leupold better than Vortex?

It depends. Leupold has an added advantage over vortex when it comes to the quality of their scopes, but Vortex has the price advantage. Both brands are known to make quality optics and in the end your final choice will trickle down to your personal preference.

Final Thoughts

A good rifle scope is very important for any hunter that is looking to aim and shoot targets accurately even at long distances. All the Leupold scopes we have listed above will bring the faraway targets closer and help you achieve greater accuracy when hunting. Get yourself the scope that suits your needs in the best way possible and use it to make your hunting expedition more rewarding this season.