One question we hear occasionally is “Can you use a hunting rangefinder for golf?”.
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The quick answer is yes, but it’s not always as easy as using a rangefinder designed specifically for golf. Almost all name brand golf rangefinders are designed to pick out the pin from background objects by locking onto the object that is the closest to you. Bushnell calls it Pinseeker, Leupold calls it PinHunter and Callaway/Nikon refers to it as First Target Priority Mode. These technologies definitely make it easier and faster to get a reading about which you’ll feel confident.
Many hunting rangefinders are designed to do the opposite. They easily pick up the more distant objects, rather than closer objects. That eliminates the problem of leaves and brush in the foreground for hunters.
Recently though GolfBuddy has been touting the GolfBuddy LR5 is good for hunting because it has three different modes. The Standard Mode which is a single button press that returns a single distance. It also has Pin Mode that scans for 10 seconds and settles on the closest target which is what you get with most laser rangefinders designed for golf. Scan Mode on the GolfBuddy, scans for 10 seconds, displaying the distance to any target that it hits. It doesn’t stop on the closest target, which should work best for hunters.
There’s no question that plenty of people use hunting rangefinders for golf and golf rangefinders for hunting. The results are often mixed, probably depending on the distance to the target and steadiness of the person using it.
Have you ever tried a laser rangefinder for golf and hunting? We would love to hear what worked or didn’t work for you. Leave us a comment below!