So I headed to Lost Creek Shoe Shop to look at binoculars. This Amish run shoe shop in Oakland Mills, Pa also has a large selection of all the top optics ranging from the hundreds to the thousands of dollars. They generally have excellent prices as well and accept trade-ins of optics as well.
I already pretty much knew what I wanted because I had researched all the top bins that are currently available. I knew I wanted something with a huge FOV, it should be comfortable to use with and without glasses, and it should feel good to hold. Well, I ended up with what I had in mind, the new Zeiss Victory FL* 8×42. I tried the Leica Ultravids and they were also fantastic, but the FOV was slightly less, and they were also heavy. I know, I know, I was nitpicking but I wanted to end up with something I would enjoy. I will give my thoughts on the Victory FL’s in a later post.
So if anyone is looking to buy optics at good prices I highly recommend Lost Creek Shoe Shop. Click for a Google Map to the shop. The high end bins are usually several hundred dollars cheaper than Eagle Optics and optics4birding.