The durability of the Atibal Stealth 5-30x56 FFP with zero stop, available in August 2022, was tested this month on an African safari hunt. The scope proved to be tough and durable, taking all sorts of abuse and withstanding all of the rigors of African hunting.
In July 2022, Atibal owner and CEO, Jimmy Labita and his teenage son had the opportunity to spend ten days with Johan Petzer Safaris in South Africa. This was the perfect opportunity to test the new Stealth 5-30x56 FFP.
Murphy’s law states that if anything can go wrong in a given situation, it will. As hunters know, if anything is going to break or malfunction during your hunt, especially an African hunting safari, chances are it will be the rifle scope. Today’s rifle scopes are built tough and can withstand a lot of wear and tear, they are more prone to failure compared to other parts of a rifle.
Over the years, Atibal rifle scopes have been bashed, banged and dropped all over the United States. From the Kaibab National Forest at the Grand Canyon, to deer hunting in Nebraska and hog hunting in Texas. The African bush can now be added to that list and the Atibal Stealth 5-30x56 FFP performed flawlessly with no failure. The rifle scope was used and abused and was able to connect shots ranging from 100 yards all the way to 600 yards.
In South Africa, Jimmy connected with a 600-yard shot on a massive kudu bull; the bull then had to be tracked down a steep, rigid hill. They were able to follow the blood trail through the thick African bush to the bottom of a wash and continued the journey alongside the creek.
The creek was lined with large slippery boulders and despite much effort, most of the party ended up slipping and falling on the rocks. As Jimmy falls backwards, he is forced to toss the rifle and turn his body to land on his chest instead of his back getting the wind knocked out of him. Thankfully the binocular harness for his Atibal Apex 12x50 ED Binoculars broke his fall, though the binos fared better than he did.
After catching his breath and recovering the rifle, Jimmy noticed that the Stealth 5-30x56 FFP took a solid blow during the fall. The windage adjustment was marred up and there was concern about the rifle scope maintaining zero. Evaluation of the damage would have to wait as they still needed to recover the kudu. After three more hours of searching, they came up short when the blood trail ran dry. There were also signs of fresh cape buffalo tracks and droppings ending the search. The dense bush and the presence of unpredictable, dangerous cape buffalo was reason enough to call off the search. This was a disappointment for the group, as it always is when you can't recover an animal you shot.
The following day, Jimmy was able to evaluate any damage to the rifle scope. He was able to take it out and verify the zero. He placed a plastic water bottle 100 yards out and to his surprise all the three shots were on target. The robust design and 34mm tube on the Atibal Stealth 5-30x56 FFP appeared to save the optic from losing zero, showing that Atibal optics are reliable, rugged, and accurate and can take a beating even in the African bush.
During their week in South Africa with Johan Petzer Safaris, Jimmy and James harvested two impalas, three blesbucks, one wildebeest, one zebra, one nyala, and one kudu (that wasn’t recovered. Overall, it was an amazing week of hunting and confirmed that the Atibal Stealth 5-30x56 FFP can handle everything and anything thrown at it. From being dragged through the bush to being dropped on a boulder, the rifle scope still held zero. The Stealth was versatile in all environments, from low light to bright sunny days, from dense bush to open fields, and at varying distances from 100 yards to 600 yards. The rifle scope didn't miss a beat and connected on almost every shot that was taken using a 300 Winchester short magnum.