Self-plagiarism disclaimer: This is an excerpt from a reply to a new member on the site looking for info on loading for the .30-06. With little modesty, I thought it deserved more widespread exposure. (It's also been a base-fuel for gun forums, re-ignited here): The great thing here is that (I'm making some assumptions, so forgive if wrong) you are just starting out with reloading. There is NO BETTER cartridge on the face of the earth with which to learn reloading, and there may well be no better cartridge on the face of the earth, period. No shooter or reloader of any great experience would spend much effort arguing with someone who stated those beliefs. You are hearing this from someone who is NOT a devotee or big fan of the .30-06. My interests run to the more exotic, and I own only three guns in the caliber. But my respect and knowledge of that caliber's capabilities are hardly met by others which may be more favorite to me. Jack O'Connor probably gave the cartridge its true due when he stated that he would not be afraid to walk across the entire continent of Africa with a .30-06 balanced across his shoulder. He was right. The cartridge has long been used successfully and with little extension or allowance on everything from pocket gophers to pachyderms. It shines best in America, and for the working man that has one gun and knows how to use it: He can take to the rockchuck rimrock with a fine 100g load and hold his own against the best fat-barreleld .22-250 guys (BETTER in a 20mph wind), and then engage a packstring into the deep wilderness and take the biggest 6x6 Wapiti that ever walked, shooting clean through both shoulders at respectable range with the 180g offerings. It would be safe to say that any elk hunter believing in the requirement of a belted magnum has not had much experience hunting elk with a .30-06. Easy to handload is a vast understatement with the cartridge. It accepts any and all misattentions to carefulness in the loading process and selection of components, and somehow delivers accurate ammunition with ANY effort. The 150g load is often the recommended pill for deer-sized game, but often a lighter (125-130g) bullet might give more explosive instant kills. The 180g offerings are considered the best for elk generally, but new bullets of stout construction (Nosler, Barnes), can offer the same penetration with a lighter, flatter-shooting weight. 165g bullets are the darling of the cartridge, offering long range flat trajectory, and mass that does very well against solid bone: A rare event of a compromise that is not such. A 220g roundnose directed at a Grizzly's shoulder will instantly become a .60 caliber slug, traveling faster than any .45-70. No Grizzly guide in Alaska would question a hunter that showed up with his "only gun", a .30-06 loaded stoutly. Truth be told, that guide would trust that hunter and rifle more readily than any "walking Cabelas's catalog" dude that arrived with a belted-magnum big bore he'd bought just for the trip. For the North American Hunter, NO cartridge can be argued as better all-around. Those that engage in such debates are merely participating in recreational verbal sparring matches.