WON Landing Page March 2022

Scope Freeze Project: Crimson Trace Brushline Pro

The world of rifle optics is growing. Crimson Trace added 50 new options to the pool this last year. I tried out one of the new Brushline Pro Series scopes for the purpose of building a medium game hunting rifle. 

Crimson Trace is a manufacturer dedicated to producing the highest quality laser sights, tactical lights, electronic sights, and riflescopes for your pistols, rifles, and shotguns.

Sponsored by Crimson Trace

 Specs for the Brushline Pro 

Second deer taken with the CT Brushline Pro

This Brushline Pro model has 4-16 power variable magnification, 50mm objective, a 1-inch tube body with capped elevation and windage turrets calibrated in ¼ MOA with 40 minutes of elevation and windage adjustments to dial in (+20/-20 and Right 20/Left 20). The reticle has approximately 15 minutes of elevation hold to get out to 600 yards – much more than I will ever need to take a shot at an ethically responsible distance in my comfort range. This is a second focal plane scope with 3.7 inches of eye relief weighing in at under 20 ounces. Its reticle is CT CUSTOM BDC PRO calibrated in .308 Winchester 150 grain bullet having a G1 ballistic coefficient of 0.415. Field of view minimum 6.3 feet to maximum of 25.2 feet. There is a side parallax adjustment knob as well as a rear eyepiece diopter reticle focus adjustment. Included are user guides for both the scope and a detailed explanation of the reticle. 

Summer sight-in, Worland, WY
Summer sight-in, Worland, WY

Zeroing and Range Preparation

I mounted the scope on a Ruger Hawkeye chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. As we all know, the supply chain issues are affecting nearly every industry worldwide. Ruger simply did not have any models I was shopping for chambered in .308 Winchester available to pair with the bullet drop compensated (BDC) reticle. No problem, time to adapt and overcome with a slight deviation to a normal drop chart build up I do for every rifle and specific bullet combination. 

Brushline Pro Reticle

Obtaining an initial zero on a BDC reticle using a different caliber than intended is no different than any other initial zero. I measured the average muzzle velocity of the round I would be hunting with a chronograph and zeroed the rifle at 100 yards. 

Drop chart modification for 6.5 Creedmoor
Drop chart modification for 6.5 Creedmoor

After the initial zero, I added an extra step by sketching out the reticle with and filling in the difference of approximate yardage at the various hold points on the reticle to pair with the 6.5 Creedmoor ballistics. With ammunition being in short supply, I field verified elevation holds at only 200 and 300 yards. I now have created a custom reticle guide for the Hornaday 6.5 Creedmoor 143 grain ELDX out to a range I feel comfortable with taking a shot at game animals. Crimson Trace is working toward publishing an online ballistic calculator for their new line of scopes very soon. 

First Hunt with the Brushline Pro

First deer with the CT Brushline Pro
First deer with the CT Brushline Pro

First scheduled hunt of the 2021 fall season was an early September white tail deer hunt near Meeteetse, Wyoming. My hunting partner had technical difficulties while confirming her zero. We discovered her rifle optic hardware was damaged and not serviceable to hunt with. We decided to share my rifle. Early the next morning, my hunt partner and I headed out. It was a very successful hunt for both of us. Even without having much time to practice with my scope set up, my hunt partner had no problems with the reticle and notched her tag. We both harvested deer with one shot fired apiece. 

Second deer taken with the CT Brushline Pro
Second deer taken with the CT Brushline Pro

One Final Check: Frozen

The initial zero was obtained in over 100-degree temperatures in August. It is now winter in the Pacific Northwest; morning temperatures are below freezing in the 20s. I left the rifle and scope in my truck overnight to freeze it. I wanted to see if there was any significant difference in point of impact with temperature difference. The scope and rifle held its zero after being frozen with about an 80+degree temperature swing since the last time the rifle was discharged. My groups were a bit looser, but still sub-MOA. I can probably attribute the larger groups to my human factor more than on the equipment. Being it was 28 degrees, now I am bundled up in layers and shooting with gloves. 

Cold weather zero check
Cold weather zero check

I liked several features on this optic. The glass is bright with good light gathering capability in low light, dusky conditions at the beginning and end of early to late hunt days starting and ending in darkness. The side parallax and the front eyepiece diopter adjustments made it very easy to bring everything into sharp focus. I also liked the raised grip strip on the zoom dial.  This feature made it easy to locate and maneuver without having to break cheek weld, even with gloves on in cold weather. The reticle for hunting is simple, yet effective, with multiple clear elevation hold points. Frankly, I’ll admit … it took a little getting used to and practice with my custom reticle revision sketch for the 6.5 Creedmoor, but it wasn’t difficult.  Most hold distances out to 200 yards were very close, if not identical yardages to the factory .308 Winchester BDC drop chart. 

Brushline Pro

If you are shopping around for a new scope, Crimson Trace jumped into the riflescope market with 50 new options to choose from. Having a wide variety of price points, reticles and features, there may be one to suit your needs. 

From fire to ice, cold weather range tests
From fire to ice, cold weather range tests
  • About Jen Barcklay

    Jen Barcklay is a retired civilian field helicopter mechanic with a lifelong fascination with anything that goes boom. She has been blessed to be able to help others by spending most of the last 20 years involved in firefighting and EMS operations in various locations around the world. She is also a US Army veteran. In 2009, Jen survived a life-changing traumatic brain injury, which she was fortunate to overcome, and has made significant progress in recovery. Since then, she has relearned the ability to shoot, discovered hunting and realized how important an outdoor lifestyle is to aid in healing and rebuilding a new life. Jen enjoys sharing her knowledge with others as an NRA certified rifle instructor. One of her favorite activities is long range rifle shooting. Jen believes every new day is a gift to explore, discover, and learn more.