6 Best Scopes for 22LR Squirrel Hunting - Outdoor Moran (2024)

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When it comes to squirrel hunting with a.22LR, having the right scope can make all the difference between a successful outing and a frustrating one. The best scope for 22LR squirrel huntingoffers the clarity, precision, and durability necessary to hone your shooting skills and make every hunting expedition successful.

From dense forests to open fields, and from dawn until dusk, a scope enhances your accuracy effortlessly, allowing you to easily zero in on those elusive targets. Moreover, rifle scopes aid in speedy target finding and acquisition which is vital for this hunting.

If you are having a hard time finding the best scope for 22LR squirrel hunting, you have come to the right place. We have scoured the optics market, weighed the pros and cons, and put together a list of the top contenders for the best scopes for 22LR squirrel hunting. But first, here are some of the attributes that make a great scope for squirrel hunting.

What Makes a Great Scope for Squirrel Hunting?

A great scope for squirrel hunting should have several key features to enhance your hunting experience: The features include:

  1. Versatile Magnification: Squirrel hunting often involves shooting at relatively small targets from various distances. A scope with variable magnification, typically in the range of 3x to 9x, allows you to zoom in for precise shots at longer distances and zoom out for a wider field of view when squirrels are closer.
  2. Large Objective Lens Size: A larger objective lens diameter allows more light to enter the scope, resulting in brighter images, especially in low-light conditions such as dawn or dusk when squirrels are most active. A good objective lens size for squirrel hunting is around 40mm to 50mm.
  3. Crisp Reticle Type: For squirrel hunting, a simple and uncluttered reticle is usually preferred. A standard duplex reticle or a fine crosshair reticle can provide a clear aiming point without obstructing your view of the target.
  4. Durability and Weather Resistance: Squirrel hunting often involves trekking through various terrains and weather conditions. The best scope should be shockproof, waterproof, and fog-proof to ensure reliable performance in all environments.
  5. Optical Clarity. Furthermore, the best scope for 22LR squirrel hunting should have high-quality lens coating to improve light transmission, resulting in brighter and clearer images.
  6. Eye Relief: Adequate eye relief is important for comfortable shooting, especially if you’re using a rifle with significant recoil. A scope with generous eye relief, preferably around 3.5 to 4 inches, ensures you can maintain a safe distance between your eye and the scope’s eyepiece

Best Scopes for 22LR Squirrel Hunting

Rifle scopes are the go-to optics for 22LR squirrel hunting. Here are some great options worth your consideration.

1) Leupold VX-Freedom Rimfire 2-7x33mm Rifle Scope

6 Best Scopes for 22LR Squirrel Hunting - Outdoor Moran (1)

Leupold VX-Freedom Rimfire 2-7x33mm Rifle Scope is the best scope for 22LR squirrel hunting, it features a Rimfire MOA reticle,6061-T6 Aluminum construction, Twilight Light Management System, Scratch scratch-resistant lenses, and a Waterproof & Fogproof performance. It has a compact and lightweight design that makes it a perfect match for hunting.

This rimfire rifle scope is built with versatility in mind. The 2-7x magnification range offers versatility, allowing for precision shots at varying distances. Furthermore, the clarity and brightness of the glass are outstanding, even in low-light conditions, thanks to Leupold’s proprietary Twilight Light Management System that ensures optimal light transmission.

Durability is another hallmark of the Leupold VX-Freedom series, and this rimfire scope is no exception. It is constructed from aircraft-grade aluminum to withstand recoil and rugged outdoor conditions with ease. It also features a matte finish to reduce glare and protect against scratches, maintaining its sleek appearance over time.

To top off everything else, this rifle scope boasts an ergonomic design and intuitive controls that make adjustments effortless, allowing shooters to stay focused on their target without fumbling with settings.


  • 1/4 MOA Finger Click
  • 3:1 Zoom Ratio
  • Scratch Resistant Lenses
  • 1-inch tube diameter
  • Second focal plane reticle
  • Twilight Light Management System
  • Waterproof & Fogproof
  • 6061-T6 Aircraft Quality Aluminum
  • Non-reflective matte finish


  • Generous eye relief
  • Excellent build quality
  • Clear optics


  • Non-illuminated

2) Vortex Diamondback Rimfire 2-7x35mm Rifle Scope

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The Vortex Diamondback Rimfire 2-7x35mm rifle scope is a top-tier choice for 22LR squirrel hunting. Its exceptional optical performance, durable construction, and user-friendly features make it a valuable asset in the hunting field.

From its precise adjustments to its rugged reliability, this scope offers everything you need to enhance your shooting experience and consistently hit your targets with confidence. Besides, the 2-7x magnification range offers the flexibility to engage targets at various distances with precision and clarity.

The optical performance of this rifle scope is also impressive. The 35mm objective lens ensures ample light transmission, resulting in bright and clear images even in low-light conditions. Furthermore, the second focal plane reticle maintains its size relative to the target throughout the magnification range, allowing for quick and intuitive holdover adjustments without obscuring the sight picture.

The scope’s single-piece tube construction provides rugged durability, while the nitrogen purging and O-ring seals make it waterproof, fog-proof, and shockproof, ensuring reliable performance in any environment. Additionally, the included lens covers and a lens cloth help to protect and maintain the optical clarity of the scope.


  • Aircraft-grade aluminum construction
  • Fully multi-coated optics
  • Waterproof, fog-proof, and shockproof
  • Rear focal plane reticle
  • Hard anodized finish
  • 2-7x magnification range
  • 1-inch tube diameter
  • 100 MOA total adjustment range
  • 0.25 MOA adjustment click value


  • Lightweight
  • Ease of use
  • Rugged construction withstands recoil and impact


  • Non-Illuminated

3) Hawke Sport Optics Vantage 4-16x50mm AO Rifle Scope

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The Hawke Sport Optics Vantage 4-16x50mm AO Rifle Scope is one of the best scopes for 22LR Squirrel Hunting,it harbors an array of high-quality features that make it incredible.

With its versatile magnification range from 4x to 16x, coupled with a large 50mm objective lens, this scope delivers crisp and clear images with excellent light transmission, even in low-light conditions. The adjustable objective (AO) feature allows for precise parallax correction, ensuring accuracy at various distances.

Furthermore, the optical quality of this rifle scope is incredible. It has multi-coated optics to minimize glare and enhance contrast for a vivid sight picture. Besides that, the crisp reticle is illuminated to ensure confident aiming in low-light settings.

Another highlight of the scope is its construction quality. It is constructed with robust materials and features a durable design to withstand the rigors of outdoor use. Over and above that, the scope’s 1-inch mono-tube chassis provides a solid platform for reliable performance and precise adjustments.


  • Second focal plane reticle
  • Adjustable Objective
  • Fully multi-coated optics
  • Waterproof and fog-proof
  • 1-inch body tube
  • Magnesium alloy chassis
  • 4-16x total magnification
  • Side focus control for parallax adjustment to infinity
  • 1/4 MOA low profile “no-snag” fingertip turrets
  • Fast focus eye bell
  • High torque zoom ring.


  • Illuminated reticle
  • Generous eye relief
  • Great low-light performance
  • Excellent craftsmanship


  • None

4) Hawke Sport Optics Vantage 4-12x50mm Rifle Scope

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The Hawke Sport Optics Vantage 4-12x50mm Rifle Scope is a remarkable piece of optical engineering that delivers exceptional performance for hunters of all levels and skills. It is easy to use and ideal for hunting in virtually all light settings.

With its 4-12x magnification range and a large 50mm objective lens, this scope offers clear and bright images even in low-light conditions, making it ideal for dawn and dusk hunting sessions. Furthermore, the multi-coated optics ensure maximum light transmission, resulting in sharp and crisp images with true color representation.

Durability is another standout feature of the Vantage rifle scope. Constructed from high-quality materials, it can withstand recoil and harsh weather conditions without compromising its performance. The scope’s rugged design, coupled with its waterproof and fog-proof construction, ensures reliability in any environment.

What’s more, the precise and repeatable adjustments of windage and elevation turrets enable shooters to make quick and accurate corrections on the fly. The scope also features an adjustable objective that allows for parallax correction and enhances accuracy at various distances.


  • 11 layer fully multi-coated optics for excellent clarity
  • Mono-tube aluminum chassis
  • Side focus control for parallax adjustment to infinity
  • 80 MOA adjustment range
  • 1/4 MOA low profile “no-snag” fingertip turrets
  • Fast focus eye bell
  • Second focal plane reticle
  • 1-inch tube diameter
  • 4-12x magnification range
  • High torque zoom ring


  • Long eye relief
  • Relatively lightweight
  • Ease of adjustment
  • Lighted reticle
  • Good low-light performance


  • Fixed parallax

5) Leupold FX-I Rimfire 4x28mm Rifle Scope

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The Leupold FX-I Rimfire 4x28mm Rifle Scope is a precision optical instrument engineered specifically for rimfire rifles, delivering exceptional clarity and accuracy for shooters of all levels. With its precise adjustments and reliable performance, the Leupold FX-I Rimfire 4x28mm Rifle Scope stands as a testament to Leupold’s commitment to excellence in optical engineering.

Its compact design belies its powerful performance, offering a 4x magnification that brings distant targets into sharp focus without compromising on field of view. Whether you’re honing your skills at the range or engaging in small game hunting, this scope’s fixed magnification ensures consistent sight picture and optimal eye relief, resulting in swift and accurate target acquisition.

Leupold optics are crafted with renowned quality and durability and this rimfire scope isn’t any different. It is built to withstand the rigors of outdoor use while maintaining peak functionality. Moreover, the rugged construction is nitrogen filled, rendering it both waterproof and fog-proof for clear vision in all weather conditions.

Above all, the scope has high-quality optics and scratch-resistant lenses treated with Leupold’s proprietary Multicoat 4 lens coating to enhance light transmission and delivering vivid, true-to-life imagery.


  • Multi-coat 4
  • Classic/Standard lockable eyepiece
  • Micro-Friction 1/4 MOA
  • Rimfire parallax
  • One-inch main tube
  • Proprietary Nitrogen fill process
  • 100% waterproof and fog-proof
  • 6061-T6 aluminum housing
  • 4x fixed magnification power


  • Large field of view
  • Long eye relief
  • Durable and well-made
  • Lightweight and portable


  • Fixed magnification

6) Athlon Optics Neos 4-12x40mm Rifle Scope

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The Athlon Optics Neos 4-12x40mm Rifle Scope marks our next pick of the best scope for 22LR squirrel hunting. It is a standout performer in this category, offering a compelling blend of versatility, clarity, and durability.

With the variable 4-12x magnification, the scope strikes an excellent balance between close-range accuracy and long-range precision. This makes it suitable for a wide range of shooting applications, not just hunting. Besides, the 40mm objective lens gathers ample light for clear images even in low-light conditions, ensuring you never miss a shot at dawn or dusk.

The optics are crisp and bright, providing sharp images with minimal distortion across the entire zoom range. With its rugged construction and shockproof design, this scope can withstand the rigors of the field, maintaining its accuracy and performance even in harsh environments.

The Neos 4-12x40mm Rifle Scope also boasts user-friendly features that enhance its overall usability. Firstly, it is outfitted with a side parallax adjustment that allows for quick and precise focusing, ensuring your target stays in sharp focus at any distance. The reticle is clear and easy to see, aiding in quick target acquisition and shot placement. Additionally, the scope’s matte finish reduces glare and reflection, helping to keep your position concealed from wary prey.


  • Fully Multicoated optics
  • Aircraft-grade aluminum chassis
  • Heat-treated one-piece tube
  • Fully multi-coated optics
  • 1-inch tube diameter
  • Second focal plane reticle placement
  • 50 MOA windage and elevation adjustment range


  • Sturdy and durable
  • Lightweight
  • Large field of view
  • Fully waterproof, fog-proof, and shockproof


  • None

Read Also:6 Best Vortex Scopes for .22 LR (Long Rifle)

Factors to Consider when Choosing the Best Scope for 22LR Squirrel Hunting

Magnification Range

Magnification power in rifle scopes for squirrel hunting vary from one product to the other. You typically don’t need extremely high magnification. A scope with a moderate magnification range, such as 3-9x, is often sufficient. This allows you to zoom in for precise shots while maintaining a wider field of view for scanning the area.

Objective Lens Size

A larger objective lens diameter lets in more light, providing a brighter image, especially in low-light conditions like dawn or dusk when squirrels are most active. However, you should strike the balance between size and weight to avoid excessive weight and bulkiness.

Reticle Type

Choose a scope with a reticle that suits your preferences and shooting style. For squirrel hunting, a simple duplex or BDC (Bullet Drop Compensation) reticle is usually adequate. These reticles offer quick target acquisition without cluttering the sight picture.

Durability and Weather Resistance

Since squirrel hunting often involves trekking through various terrains and weather conditions, opt for a scope that’s rugged and well-built to stand the test of time. The best scope for 22LR squirrel hunting should also have features like waterproofing, fog-proofing, and shock resistance to ensure reliability in the field.

Lens Coating

A scope with high light transmission ensures bright and clear images, crucial for spotting squirrels in dense foliage or shadows. Coated lenses, particularly fully multi-coated ones, enhance light transmission and reduce glare.

Weight and Size

Since you’ll be carrying your rifle for extended periods during hunts, opt for a scope that balances performance with weight and size. A compact and lightweight scope won’t weigh you down as much and won’t throw off the balance of your rifle.

Parallax Adjustment

While not always necessary for short-range shooting, a parallax-adjustable scope can improve accuracy, especially for longer shots. Consider whether adjustable parallax is a feature you prioritize.


  • Is parallax adjustment necessary for squirrel hunting?

Parallax adjustment may not be critical for shorter distances typically encountered in squirrel hunting. However, having parallax adjustment capabilities can enhance accuracy, especially for longer shots.

  • What magnification range is suitable for squirrel hunting?

A scope with low to moderate magnification is ideal for squirrel hunting. Magnification ranging from 3x to 9x is commonly preferred as it provides enough zoom for precise aiming without sacrificing field of view.

  • What’s the budget range for a quality squirrel hunting scope?

Quality rimfire scopes suitable for squirrel hunting can range from around $100 to $500 or more, depending on factors like brand, features, and build quality. While it’s essential to invest in a reliable scope, you can find excellent options within the mid-range price range that offer the features needed for successful squirrel hunting without breaking the bank.

Final Words

In conclusion, the best scope for 22LR squirrel hunting trickles down to your specific hunting needs and preferences. All the scope we have mentioned above excel in virtually all hunting environments and are easy to use, even for beginners in hunting. Hopefully, you are now able to find a quality scope that will be a game changer for you in the hunting fields.

Read Also: 5 Best Red Dots for P365 X Macro

6 Best Scopes for 22LR Squirrel Hunting - Outdoor Moran (2024)


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