Vortex Pro GT Tripod Kit of the same value. My father-in-law is allowing me to use his Celestron spotting scope while he breaks in his new ProMaster, so I just needed a good tripod; one that will work well with the high-end spotting scope I am saving up for.
Back when I had my own Celestron spotting scope, I had purchased a $36 tripod from Sears, but it broke on my first outting with it and to top it off, I had lost my receipt! I vowed to never again purchase a piece of junk cheap tripod. Well, the Vortex tripod arrived the other day and I have been able to use it for a couple of days. I already love it! Here is why:
1. This thing is built to be durable. It weighs a little more than my old one, but I packed it around for two hours with no problem.
2. The quick-release plate that you screw to your spotting scope is awesome and fast. I particularly like the spring-loaded locking pin to help make sure I don't release it while hiking over rocks.
3. It has quick-release extension legs which are nice. I typically pack my tripod mounted scope around with the legs fully extended, but having the ability to shorten or lengthen the legs quickly at any given time is nice.
4. This tripod lets me enjoy looking through my scope at a comfortable height. I am just under six feet tall and many tripods don't accommodate me. Always make sure to look for maximum height specifications before purchasing a scope.
5. This scope comes with a nice carryng case, adjustment tools, and an extra quick-release plate.
6. The tripod head movement action is very important for birding, especially when trying to follow birds of prey in flight. I find that the Vortex head moves pretty nicely. Higher end tripods like Manfrotto's may be better, but I am satisfied with this one.