About the Long Eye Relief Scope and Why You’d Want One

Long eye relief scopes are a lesser known type of scope, but are very useful for their specific niche. Long eye relief scopes allow you to maintain a proper sight picture with your eye further away from the eyepiece that what is possible with a regular scope. This can be useful for many reasons.


Long eye relief allows for use of a scope on a handgun. Traditional scopes won’t work on handguns, because they require the scope to be less than six inches from your eye which doesn’t work for holding a handgun. Thus, long eye relief scopes allow on to hold the handgun with their arms fully extended and still be able to see through their scopes.

Heavy-Recoiling Rifles

Long eye relief scopes also helps for rifles that have a large amount of recoil. This is the best way to avoid scope bite, because it gives you more space between your forehead and the sharp edge of your eyepiece. Heavy recoiling rifles are typically considered anything larger than .30-06 Springfield.

Scout Rifle

Another use for a long eye relief scopes is on a scout rifle. Scout rifles are a light rifle that can take any game in North America and is about seven pounds. Most long eye relief scopes are small scopes that allow quick sight acquisition and are a low enough power to not lose the target when shouldering the rifle, which is how Jeff Cooper intended scout rifles to be used.


The highest magnification commonly available for long eye relief scopes is eight power, while the average scope is somewhere in the range of two to five power, and sometimes are variable zoom, typically having a maximum zoom of around seven to eight power.


Long eye relief scopes a typically mounted forward of the rifle’s receiver, either on the rear sight base dovetail or on a rail that’s mounted to the barrel. This provides another benefit to the milsurp shooter, who can reload his rifle using stripper clips without having the scope get in the way.