how to use a golf rangefinder

How To Use A Golf Rangefinder

Ever wondered how some pro golfers are so great at hitting the distances they need? Experience is one thing, practice another, and club selection is next, but how did they get so good at it in the first place? By using a golf monocular range finder.

A golf monocular range finder or golf scope is a device that looks a bit like a binocular which golfer uses in their game to determine the distance between them and their target.

Once you own one, guessing distances will be a thing of the past. But, you’re going to have to learn how to use your golf rangefinder first.

Here is everything you need to know about how to use a rangefinder.

The Basics On How To Use A Range A Rangefinder

There are quite a few types of golf rangefinder out there but the basics of using them are pretty much the same, and here they are.

1. Find Your Target

The first step is to work out what your target is on the golf course. Once you have found where you want your ball to land, you can start using your rangefinder to work out the distance.

2. Aim Your Rangefinder

The next step is to aim the rangefinder at your target. It’s very simple to do, all you have to do is look through it and point it as your target, just like you would if looking at a lion through some binoculars.

3. Activate Your Device

Once you have your target in the sights of your golf distance finder, it’s time to activate it. This will be different depending on what type of golf monocular range finder.

4. Test The Accuracy

Now it’s time to check that it’s working correctly by measuring the distance between you and the ground. If you’re happy with its accuracy, then move on to your target.

5. Get Your Yardage

Once on and focused on your target, your golf scope will let you know the yardage so you can pick the right club and know what distance you need to hit.

6. Now Calculate The Slope

If you have a golf scope that has a slope setting, you can find out the elevation change between you and your target.

All you need to do is aim the rangefinder at your target and then at the ground where you’re standing and it’ll give you the difference in elevation. This will also help you to adjust your shots as an elevation change also adds or removes distance from as the crow flies.

Types Of Golf Rangefinders & How They Work

Optical Golf Rangefinders

Optical golf scopes are a bit outdated these days but just in case you have inherited one from your grandpa, here is how they work.

An optical golf monocular range finder is just like some binoculars that also calculate distance. They require no batteries and all you have to do is point it at your target and fiddle with the knobs until your target is in focus, and the rangefinder will give you the distance to the target. 

Optical golf rangefinders are not as accurate as their GPS or laser counterparts, but they are good enough.

GPS Golf Rangefinders

GPS rangefinders only work if you have uploaded a map of the course you’re playing on into the rangefinder. Without this, your rangefinder will not work at all, and it means you will have to be prepared and organized, uploading every map of every course you plan on.

Once the map is uploaded, your GPS rangefinder is easy to use. Simply turn it on having uploaded the course map and wait for the GPS to connect to the satellites. Once connected, it will know where you are and be able to gauge the distances you’re after.

Once the GPS rangefinder has found your location, you can then select your target hole and the rangefinder will give you the distance to and slope of your target object.

GPS rangefinders are more accurate than optical ones, but their accuracy is dependent on software updates, GPS satellite signal, and the accuracy of the uploaded maps.

Laser Golf Rangefinders

Laser rangefinders work by sending a laser beam to your target and measures the distance in between. The hardest thing about using a golf rangefinder like this is learning how to aim them, You will need to practice using one to get accurate readings.

It is challenging in the beginning but once you have the technique down, it’s super simple and accurate.

How To Use A Laser Rangefinder

To use a laser rangefinder just turn it on and adjust the mode based on your situation on the golf course. Different modes are there to adjust the sights, distances, and slopes. Learning to use the different modes can be challenging and you will need to practice a little bit.

Once you have got the right mode, simply lift the rangefinder to your eye, look at your target and press the button to see the distance and slope to your target.

The one issue with laser rangefinders is that their accuracy is dependent on how much of the beam is reflected back to them. Some golf courses are adding reflectors to their flags to make things a little easier and you can help by hitting a more reflective target with your aim.

What Shots Should I Use My Golf Rangefinder on?

This is all about your own personal preference but in practice, it’s best to use it for as many shots as you can. This will help you learn to gauge distances better and help you learn which clubs do the most for you in different parts of your game.

Ranging Out

There you have it, everything you need to know about how to use a rangefinder. They are super simple to use but you will need some practice, so be sure to play around with your golf rangefinder before you’re out on the golf course. 

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