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Joined: 08/20/2006
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favorate elk cartrige

i am always interested in what other people use on thier hunts.can you tell me your pick and what you shoot in it.also wwould like to know what is your average rangeyou shoot at elk.
gary b.

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Location: Wyoming
Joined: 08/04/2006
Posts: 38
favorate elk cartrige

My "standard" rifle for deer through 'bou is a Remington Model 700 BDL in .30-06 topped by a Bushnell 4-12x. For elk, I've been using Hornady 190 grain BTSPs backed by 55.1 grains of H4350 for about 2700 fps.

Sometimes I'll carry a backup gun for those days that 4x magnification is too much. That one is a M700 Safari Grade in .375 H&H topped by a Leupold 1.5-5x VariX-III. The last elk I took with it absorbed a Sierra 300 grain BTSP backed by 78.5 grains of IMR4350 through the lungs and heart and STILL ran about 100 yards into the timber. That shot was taken at about 25 yards - all I could see was hair.

The longest shot I' ve made was on the short side of 150 yards with the .30-06. That one went down like a ton of bricks.

Alamosa's picture
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Location: Southern Colorado
Joined: 03/25/2005
Posts: 245
favorate elk cartrige

I read a quote in either Bugle or Field & Stream that said the average/typical hunter has no business taking a shot over 300 yds. I think that is a reasonable assertion.

To qualify one of the damage control hunts here in Colorado hunters are required to put 3 out of 5 shots into an 8" target at 175 yds.

Doghouse - tell me about BTSP's. I've been trying to shoot them but they shoot soooo different from the nosler partitions that I may have to readjust my scope if I intend to keep using them. They shoot higher at 100 yds. Where I live I can't always buy any kind of ammo I want and sometimes have to take what's available.

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Location: Colorado
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favorate elk cartrige
Alamosa wrote:
I read a quote in either Bugle or Field & Stream that said the average/typical hunter has no business taking a shot over 300 yds. I think that is a reasonable assertion.

I would disagree. I think the average hunter has no business taking a shot over about 200 yards. I am constantly amazed by the number of hunters I talk to who admit that they haven't even fired their rifle since the last time they took a shot at an elk, two or three years ago!

As for favorite rifles, mine is a .54 caliber muzzleloader. If I couldn't use that I'd use my 30-06 loaded with Hornady 180 grain Light-Magnums.

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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/03/2006
Posts: 23
favorate elk cartrige

I use a 300 win mag loaded with 76gr of R22 with a 180 gr Nosler Partition. I agree that the average hunter probably should not attempt a shot over 150 - 200 yards because the average hunter does not shoot enouhg. If you have put in a lot of time shooting at 300 - 400 yds and know your gun and your abilities well, then shots of that length are probably acceptable. I would feel sick if I took out the front leg, hind quarter or gut shot an animal leading to a painful and/or scary death simply because I took a shot I should not have. (Scary would be a pack of Coyote's or Wolves finishing the kill that I started)

Bench shooting under excellent conditions with my 300 I know I am 3 inches high at 100, dead on at 200 and about 5 inches low at 300. In the past two months I have put at least 250 rounds through the barrel from all types of positions. Even with that, I'd try to get closer if a 300 plus yard shot presented itself. Take it for what it's worth. lol

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Location: Kentucky/ Colorado
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favorate elk cartrige

I shoot a .300 Win Mag and feel comfortable, if I have a good rest and the winds not blowing , out to 300-400 yards. I like to get closer if it's possible.
I also use a Alpine, Split limb Bow. #60 Pound draw and carbon arrows and feel comforable out to 40 yards.

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Location: Wyoming
Joined: 08/04/2006
Posts: 38
favorate elk cartrige

Hmmm - wish I could tell you how the BTSPs compare to Noslers, but since I've never used the latter (believe it or not), I wouldn't have the foggiest.

I've spent enough time working up decent (with more emphasis on accuracy than velocity) loads for both the .30-06 and .300 Weatherby with both 165s (deer and pronghorn) and 190s (elk - moose or caribou too if I had occasion to chase them again). I guess I don't see a huge difference in how well they shoot over factory ammo at 300-plus, but I generally won't shoot at anything (prairie dogs excepted) that far away. In terms of terminal performance, both the 190 and 165 do better than the Sierras I used to load (though I do like the Sierras run through my M1A and pointed at targets). But, to tell you the truth, they don't kill any deader than the factory ammo I used years ago (minus the satisfaction that comes with carefully rolling your own).

Maybe some day I'll stop buying new computers and have enough money to buy enough Noslers to work up some new loads!? eye roll

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Location: Antelope, Ore
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favorate elk cartrige

I don't have a favorite elk cartridge. I've used 6.5-06, 7x57, 7mm Rem mag, 280 Rem, 308 Win. All worked well and it's a spur of the moment thing for me.
I do like mid range bullets tho. 26 cal I like 140gr Hornadys. 7x57 and 280 Rem- 154gr Hornadys, 7mm mag 160gr Speer hot cores and 308, 165 gr Hornadys.

You see I have a strong prefrence for Hornadys but I believe most bullets in those weight's will work well. Sierra's I don't use, I have used them on deer and found them to be a bit soft, lot's more damage than I want. I've shot a few Nosler partition's but never felt the need for them. Seem's like a lot to pay. My 6.5x06 was going to be set up around the 140gr partition. I worked up loads and broke in the barrel with 140gr Hornady's then switched over to partitions. Both shot to the same point of impact! Well that year I used the 140gr Hornady on deer and they were fine. Then grabbed the wrong box of ammo to go elk hunting, got the Hornadys by mistake. That bullet has made two one shot kills on elk so I can't find a reason to give it up. This year I may not go elk hunting but if I do, I'm using that bullet in a 6.5x55. It's a model 70 featherweight w/1-4x Redfield.

I'm not a big fan of big power scopes. The 6.5-06 has a 3-9x but the 6.5x55 and my 30-06 have a 1-4x and a 2 3/4x. My 308 wore a 2 3/4x Redfield also but my son has it now and went to a 2-7x. I don't shoot that far but practice out to over 300yds and those scopes have always been fine. I think to many people burden themselves with to much scope. I don't understand the theory of getting the rifle as light as possible then planting some huge scope on it. To often these rifles look like the scope is wearing them!

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Location: VA
Joined: 10/03/2006
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favorate elk cartrige

I agree with denver. Most hunters don't have any bussiness shooting past 200 yards and that might be stretching it.

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Location: Idaho
Joined: 02/28/2006
Posts: 162
favorate elk cartrige

I like my 30.06. I hate magnums. If shooting aint fun then I won't practice. I only need the extra power if I can't shoot straight. I reload 150 grain Nosler Accubonds and they hit plenty hard with the polymer tip but hold together for awesome penetration. I shot my bull this year at 250 yards. Easy chip shot and he dropped like a ton of bricks.
Hank

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Joined: 06/18/2004
Posts: 66
Shooting at longer range

I feel very comfortable shooting deer out to 200 yards. I think my limit of comfort would be 300 yards, but I would prefer not to shoot that far. I have shot a pronghorn antelope at 240 yards, but I thought it was closer (shooting from prone position, sight picture was very steady).

I agree that ethical hunters should learn their limits on the shooting range and confine their shots in the field within those limits. I agree that most hunters do not shoot enough on the range to know their limits. There is another factor, I feel, in this discussion. The hunter's shooting limits last year do not apply to this year! I find that my body has to adjust to the shooting positions to attain my preferred shooting accuracy! That is, my muscles have to grow strong to hold the sitting position or the kneeling position steadily, and it is not a matter of doing sit-ups, push-ups, running conditioning, etc. The muscular conditioning is very activity specific. I say this because I found this to be the case, for me, this year. After a couple of trips to the range and being dissatisfied with my field position accuracy I decided to do some dry firing practice in the backyard. The same inaccuracy I found on the range was evidenced as wobble and wavering while dry firing. After spending about 20 minutes every day dry firing over and over and over and over in my backyard the wobble has gone away and my hold is much steadier. This translates to steadiness when firing with live ammo. So, and it is just my theory, just because you shot perfectly last season doesn't mean you will shoot perfectly this season!

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