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Discussion in 'Northwest Hunting' started by Koda, Nov 24, 2016.
He ate good.
And we got him out whole!
My dad's biggest bull so far.
My group has hunted elk in Washington and Moose in Alberta for years using the plain old 30-06/180gr. Deer, bear, elk, moose... no problem, even when using affordable factory Winchester 180 Power Points- a great do it all loading. A skilled shooter can use a 25-06, 270Win or similar, only in our experience they do not hit as hard as a 30 cal. Neither does 7MM. Reality... most of our shots are under 200 yards. 400+ yard shots? The 300 WM will do. Over the years as a rifle nut I've tried them all. With the correct bullet and shot placement my 243 WSSM dropped a cow elk way out yonder with 1 shot to the shoulder/80gr Tipped X at 3500fps. A 375 H&H will drop any relaxed elk/moose. A 338 WM with 210/225/250 NP really hits elk hard! But for general use it's tough to beat an 06.
I've seen a .308 Winchester pile up on an elk's shoulder.
I also heard that hunter say that he would never use his .308 on elk again.
So shot placement is extremely important when using a non bone-breaker cartridge when hunting elk.
May have been a small elk but a 143gr 6.5 creedmore pile my elk with little trouble. Collapsed both lungs ,think it may have hit the liver or grazed it.
But it went down.
Like one guy said,'impossible if it wasn't a super ultra mag 40 something caliber' laughingly
You may not like it but I took my first elk with a .257 Roberts. I was 11-12. It went mabey 100 yards before it collapsed. Lungs shot. It ran towards the logging road so that was a bonus. And Grandpa had enough wiskey in him to brave the mud and ruts. I did get 3 shots off and the first shot I thought the scope was off. At around 60 yards i shot behind the shoulder hoping for heart or lungs and he just looked at me. Put another in the same spot and he ran. Shot again while it was running. Kids. Anyway we found 2 lung shots and one in the jaw. First shot would have done it but it was a loaner rifle and I thought the dam scope was off.
These days it's a 30/06 out of a mod.70. Grandpa's old gun and a treasure. Just like dad's 6mm.
The .338 Winchester Magnum is arguably the best Elk and Bear cartridge in the world!
I usually keep my Mouth shut when this discussion comes up, which cal. for new shooters, recoil sensitive, and kids. I have always been a YUGE fan of the "little".243 and wouldn't have any trouble using it on Elk as long as I did my part and used good ammo. The one that always strikes me as being way off the mark is the mighty .270 I almost never see any lovin on that one, and in my experience, Just about the best wind shooter, up hill, long range sheep killer ever made. I think the 7 mm mag gets all the glory in that world, but the ol .270 is just as good and is almost as good as the Aught 6 for all but the toughest shots. In certain situations, I would actually pick the .270 over the others. Ye Ol' 7 mm-08 always gets lumped into the Kiddies/girls and beginners rifle club but it's a great shooter and works very well when a person takes the time to get to know the limits of that round. My Wife usually uses her Tikka T-3 .243 for most of her hunting, but has found the Ruger M77 Hawkeye in .30/06 to be her favorite rifle for every thing, But she always has the Tikka as a back up, and she shoots it better then most guys that claim to be "experts"
I like the 338wm a lot but to call it the best cartridge for bear and elk is foolish. If I had to go into thick brush after a wounded grizzly I would argue that bigger is better. In my opinion there is no one best but quite a few great cartridges depending on the environment. I think the rule is determine your needs and then define your tool to fit that need
If I had to go into the thick underbrush after any wounded Critter, I would have my .45/70 on the shoulder!!! A good friend I have hunted with since we were kids has a Browning BAR in .338 win mag, That would be a good rifle in that setting, 5 rounds of 250 gr as fast as the rifle can cycle it!!!
Today's bullet selections has blurred the lines on what is considered "enough gun" for big game hunting.
Very true .
Many a modern bullet design will make those old debates from the 50's , 60' and 70's about .270 versus .30-06 et al... moot.
Thinking and looking at rifles you can shoot and carry well all day in the hunting conditions where you hunt might be better than a endless debate on what cartridge to use.
Even better might be what bullet style to use when discussing cartridges ...
Today's powder selections have done the same thing, to a certain degree. Some great old cartridges are improved considerably.
This is where a lot of the Older Cartridges really gain. 6.5X55 Swede, 7X57 ect are even more versatile then ever before now ( not that they ever suffered in performance) and it's becoming more common to see folks choosing these chamberings over others that have been more popular! Just think what a 300 Holland & Holland would be capable of today, or a .257 Roberts, or 9.3X74!!!
I'm skeptical todays modern bullets make 'that' much of a difference... todays improved bullets are all based on the old spitzer designed late 1800's, essentially a copper jacketed lead core soft point... a breakthrough for its time no doubt. Nowadays we have more options in ballistic tips, hollowpoints, etc... but the basic spitzer shape and weight is the same. So whats the practical difference between a rifle round from 1920 and today...? (pick any other mostly overlooked caliber)
I think a lot of the "best caliber" debate is a mixture of technology slowly replacing folklore. Back in the day it was just simply a rule of thumb: the bigger the target the bigger the gun needed. Sound logic if you had to hunt large Grizzly and your only choice was a lead only bullet. However what we've learned heuristically over the years is that bullet placement is what matters. But the old rule of thumb still permeates gun culture even today most often cited as an excuse for poor marksmanship.
heuristics are a very inefficient way of learning things...
You mean FMJ's aren't good for hunting? (Sarcasm for those that can't read between the lines...)
I said 30-06 for a lot of it's versatility - However there is another HUGE benifit of that round...
There are literally dozens of boxes of hunting rounds in EVERY store that sells bullets the day before hunting season starts.
That is NOT the case with some of the less used cartridges.
If you think ahead a few months or load your own then that's not an issue but I've seen the sporting good stores the day before opening day on big game. It reminds me of the day before Valentine's Day and a bunch of dudes crowding around the last few crappy cards and getting flowers from Safeway lol.
Today's ultra modern bullet designs can be tailor made for just about any need, and they are so precisely made that flight performance and ballistics are way beyond any thing ever possible before now! What was the Gold Standard in performance back then is now considdered practice ammo now days! Look at the old Remington Cor-Loketd, a very fine design that did a marvelous job pf putting meat in the freezer, would you even consider using that bullet today?
Add in the advances in powder's and the quality of factory loading's or even better, hand loading practices and equipment we have available to us, and it's never been better then right now!
that alone right there makes the 30-06 perhaps the most practical hunting round made. Ive had 2 friends over the years ask me what "gun" to buy for just getting into hunting, neither wanting to buy another gun later on and I always put the 30-06 at the top of the list for that reason.... even though I dont own one (which is by chance not choice). Regardless of its wide availability, its ballistics are at least equal to or better than most other popular big game cartridges.
I'm not denying that there has not been an improvement in bullet design, if they improve accuracy in an older caliber/rifle by all means thats an improvement (but keep in mind that a precision made quality bullet is just one small component of rifle accuracy...). I'm just saying that the practical difference is negligible. I used Rem Cor-locked for years and would do so today, most of the deer and elk Ive taken was with those. A new ballistic soft point will not matter if one hits them in the wrong spot...
Damn, I was using those cor-locked bullets my last couple years of hunting!!
No wonder I didn't find anything to shoot at