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Best Round for Deer Hunting in Western Oregon?

Discussion in 'Northwest Hunting' started by Chooj, Dec 28, 2015.

  1. Chooj

    Chooj Fall Creek, Oregon New Member

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    Hello,

    Years ago, my son and I would hunt with muzzleloaders but now I'd like to start using a centerfire rifle.

    I am sure this has been asked many times before--what would be some of the better rounds for hunting deer in the forested areas of Western Oregon. I'm looking to make shots between 30 and 100 yards. I am thinking a 30-06 would be overkill for this type of hunting. Any recommendations? Thanks!
     
  2. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    A .44 Magnum lever gun would be great.. ideally with an aperture sight.
    Good luck.
     
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  3. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    .30-06 or .308 is fine and gives you some range if you hunt in any area where you may need to shoot beyond 200 yards. You can get "light" ammo for either cartridge if you are worried about them being too powerful for deer. You can then get heavier ammo for the same cartridge for elk.

    If 200 yards is what you would limit yourself to - and it is unlikely you would need to take a shot at deer at greater than that range in W. Orygun - then something like a .30-30 is fine too. My family has taken more deer with the .30-30 than any other cartridge. Under 100 yards the .30-30 will take deer as well as any other cartridge.

    You don't need any magnums for western Orygun deer hunting - they tend to just destroy meat, and a .30-06 or .308 are fine for elk when using the proper ammo. My dad took a lot of elk with his .30-06.

    The .243 is a fine cartridge. The 7mm-08 is good too. Pretty much anything from .30-30 or .243 on up in power to .30-06 will be fine.
     
  4. JRuby

    JRuby St. Helens Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I hunt around Mist in western Oregon - it has been my experience especially if you hunt clear cuts a 30-30 is a poor choice. I don't think you need a magnum but there are times when a 400 yard shot is possible. I think a 30-06, 308 or even a good 270/ 280 will do everything that needs being done for elk and deer. My personal choice is a 7X57 mauser with a 140 Gr Partition for deer and my 338-06 with 225 Hornady interlock for elk. Just my opinion.
     
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  5. USMC-03

    USMC-03 Moscow on the Willamette (i.e. Portland, Oregon) Well-Known Member

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    I'm in the camp of magnum haters, for medium game hunting anyway. More velocity and louder booms do not a marksman make.

    If your talking cartridges for deer only an not much more than football field range then I'm a big fan of the old turn of the century, 20's and 30's rounds; 35 Remington, 30-30 Winchester, 25-35, etc. I'm also a huge fan of 6.5 mm rounds if longer ranges may be in the mix; .260 Remington, 6.5 Swede.

    I personally use a '03 Springfield sporter in .30-06 with a rear aperture sight but both deer and elk are in the mix for me; I load 165 grain Nosler BT for deer and 200 grain Nosler Partition for elk.
     
  6. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    There is no "best" western Oregon deer hunting cartridge.

    There are number of cartridges that will do the job as well as the next.

    With your constraint of less than 100 yards, even more cartridges will work fine.

    the other side of the coin is whether you later decide you want to hunt other kinds of small to large game, and possibly later you may decide you want to hunt at longer ranges (eastern Oregon often requires much longer range shots).

    Also, do you prefer a bolt action or a lever action or a single shot?

    As I said before, .30-30 will work fine most of the time in western Oregon, but for most people 200 yards is the limit of its range - 300 yards at most for someone who really knows their rifle and has the right kind of ammo. But you wouldn't want to go hunting pronghorn or elk at 400 yards with a .30-30.

    One of the non-magnum 7mm cartridges in a bolt action, may give you more versatility for distance and smaller game (like a pronghorn). A 6mm/.243 would be lighter, and some people even use it for elk (my grandfather successfully hunted elk and bear with a .30-30).

    If you want one of those cartridges but also want a lever action, then consider the Browning BLR rifle which is chambered in a number of different cartridges you usually don't find in most lever actions.

    In short, there are a lot of cartridges that work fine for western Oregon deer.
     
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  7. JRuby

    JRuby St. Helens Oregon Well-Known Member

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    The funny thing about hunting western Oregon deer is that the season is plagued by heavy foliage - in many cases the trees dont even start to shed their leaves till much later in October. The deer are there its just that the density of the foliage makes it extremely hard to see them. Between the fire hazards and the foliage I dont hunt but the last two weeks of western Oregon deer season anymore.
     
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  8. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    .308win

    Keep it simple.

    Otherwise, pick a gun you like and get it in an option that it is chambered in.
     
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  9. v0lcom13sn0w

    v0lcom13sn0w Keizer, or Well-Known Member

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    308 win. 150-165 nosler ballistic tip or remington corelokts. used both for years.
     
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  10. Oregonhunter5

    Oregonhunter5 2C IDAHO Well-Known Member

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    Oh this question... It's like a women, pick your pleasure.
    It's not the caliber, as much as it is the setup. Like iron sights, flip scope, scout.
    I used many calipers. But I always liked the browning .348 win, with iron sights.
     
  11. Chooj

    Chooj Fall Creek, Oregon New Member

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    Thank you for the recommendations, gentlemen. I found the information from The Heretic and USMC-3 especially helpful for the type of hunting I'll be doing (most of the the shots we did with muzzleloaders was around 40-50 yards).

    I think the next step is to see some of the availabilty, cost, and choices of loads these different calipers have--then find a nice rifle to shoot them with (that will be "part 2" of my question).

    I'm just curious--would a well-placed shot with a 30-30 at 50 to 100 yards be enough to cleanly take down an elk?
     
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  12. Kruejl

    Kruejl Hillsboro Moderator of the Coriolis effect Staff Member Gold Supporter Silver Supporter

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    .308 or .270.
     
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  13. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    43 Spanish is the only choice.
     
  14. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    But you'd have to mortar that into its back beyond 25 yards.











    lol. A bead sighted 12ga is good out to 100yds easy.
     
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  15. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I know some people will assert that the .30-30 is not powerful enough for elk, but I think most forget that elk have been taken by such cartridges for many decades before we had more the more powerful cartridges.

    IMO, if you place the shot correctly and you have the right ammo, yes, it should take down an elk. I wouldn't want to take a hindquarters shot or other shot where you need the projectile to traverse quite a ways through the elk, but a well placed broadside shot with the proper ammo would and has gotten the job done.

    Maybe not on the spot, but then no cartridge guarantees that any animal will be put down immediately - sometimes animals simply do not know they are dead for quite a few seconds and their first response is to run. Shot placement and knowing the limitations of the cartridge are more important than raw power.
     
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  16. v0lcom13sn0w

    v0lcom13sn0w Keizer, or Well-Known Member

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    i was watching a show on the outdoor channel... guy was shootin cape buffalo with a 30-30. one shot, one kill.
     
  17. salmonriverjohn

    salmonriverjohn N.W Oregon coast, Gods country Well-Known Member

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    For what it's worth, an old skin bustin hide bruseing .30-06 would be all the rifle you'd ever need in North America,, for anything.
    Yes there are many, many choices (god knows I love all the choices I own) but if I could have just one, I'd have to keep my old model 70 06
     
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  18. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    My first choice would be .308 because I am a prepper and more modern defense rifles are available in .308.

    The .30-06 is a more versatile cartridge though - better with the heavier projectiles than the .308- and yes, I own both.
     
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  19. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Are you sure it wasn't a lever action in .45-70?
     
  20. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    Seems irresponsible.
     
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