hard to beat a 338 it is one of the best in my opinion. but you just asked a question that gets lots af guys fighting mad if their favorite caliber don't get picked. I'm sure you'll get lots of opinions.
I have 270 wsm 30-06 and a 243. The 243 is theThompon and I just love this gun it is a real tack driver. I bought the Thompson for hunt the small deer out here in Calif and now that is all I want to use that is why the new barrel. I know I might get some people fighting I just don;t know much about the 338 execpt last year I hunted in Montana and the person we were on his ranch he had just got a new Rem 338 for is birthday and it did the job on a big 6X6 just folded these big bull. VERY IMPRESIVE
Everyone I know that has the 338 fed is MORE than happy with this round. Of course ALL weapons shoot a little different but all my Thompson barrels so far are tack drivers. I dont think I have yet to hear a complaint on the 338 fed. As long as you can handle the recoil I dont see you complaining about it either. It is more than sufficiant to harvest the largest of North American big game and from what I have heard a very accurate round as well. Flat shooting (for its size) with plenty of energy downrange. I personally havnt gotten one since I really dont need it. I primarily bowhunt these days and on the rare occation that I rifle hunt my yardages are rarely more than 200 yards so either my .444 or 30.06 or .270 or 7mm.08 or .303 do the job for me. Last thing I need is yet another choice (so my wife says) My own personal opinion is for the 338fed. based on opinions of people I personally know and trust their opinion of the calibre. Sigh, soon as me wife see's this she's gonna go on the warpath thinkin im going to get one for maself may do it just to piss her off
I have shot a 338 win mag for the last 20+ years, i also have other calibers but when it comes to elk or moose i can tell you they work very well. If you handload you can get bullets from 160 gr to 300gr so it is good for anything from gophers to grizz . Recoil from a 300 win mag is worse than a 338 win mag in my opinion . Good luck in your quest for a new barrel but you cant go wrong with a 338 for elk, make sure to use a premium bullet too.
gotta stick up for the 300...i hav had mine for a numer of years now and the gun shoots amazing. I use 180 grain and i get a nice flight path. My 300 is by far the gun i go to if i want the for sure shot.
As the allure of hunting big whitetails becomes more and more a passion for many, we are finding that the recent (historically speaking) popularity of hunting deer from a tree stand is becoming the way to do it. I'll make no statement either for or against that technique here. This will be simply an essay on what I feel are some outstanding rifles for tree stand use.
Before we go even one more step, let's all remember that safety is first and foremost for anyone wanting to hunt...