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Location: Montana
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

The 7mag has never done any thing bad to me when i shoot any thing im so comsentrated on my target that i dont feel a thing. it a good gun.

Predatorhunter

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Location: Missouri/Arkansas
Joined: 08/21/2003
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

Thing about a 7 Mag is some people are bothered by the recoil and muzzle blast. Like it or not, it kicks noticeably more than a 30-06. Ammunition for it is more expensive as well. I'm not calling it a bad round, please refer to the topic ''7MM REM MAG'' located in the firearms section, my feelings about it are quite obvious.

The fact is some people are recoil sensitive and there's nothing I or anybody else can do about it. The only time I would support the idea of someone shooting an elk with a 243 is if they are an expert marksman with a large base of experience in elk hunting beforehand. If there are any doubts what-so-ever, then do not attempt it, plain and simple. Ideal elk cartridges are the 270 Winchester on up through the 338 Magnums. I call the 270 Winchester ideal in this case because with proper bullet selection it will cleanly kill an elk, and it has many times.

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Location: Kentucky/ Colorado
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

.243 for Elk. A friend of mine took his son hunting years ago and let him use a .243 and his son harvested his first elk......9 shots later! 6 in the vitals.
I use to hunt with a 25-06 and after hitting one 3 times in the vitals before it died, I decided to use a bigger, stronger round. Since then I have harvested 9 Elk with my .300 Win. Mag. and everyone expired right away.
Your decision of using a .243 might seem like a great idea now but after you lose a Elk or 2, you might feel different. One of the worse feelings a hunter can experience is to make a good shot on a big game animal, only to have that animal go off and die without finding it. By choosing to use a .243 you will be partially to blame. Hopefully you will learn from some of our mistakes so you wont have to repeat them but it's your choice.

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Joined: 07/01/2005
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

My first rifle for hunting was a 243 and my father didnt allow me to hunt elk my first year out because he knew the 243 wasnt an elk rifle,especially when you might be taking shots in the 300 yard arena,the next year I had upgraded to a 30-06 and I took my first cow at about 300 yards,she never even got up out of her bed,if I only had a 243 I wouldnt be out looking for elk.If you have a choice of calibers I dont think I would ever consider a 243 for anything larger than deer,why handicap yourself and risk loosing a wounded animal?I think we owe it to the game we harvest to kill them as quickly and cleanly as possible.

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Location: Missouri/Arkansas
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

''I think we owe it to the game we harvest to kill them as quickly and cleanly as possible.''

That's why if you know what you're doing and know what you can do and what your rifle can do, then there's no reason why a 243 wouldn't work.

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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

I use a 30-06, 150 grain or better.

Regarding the 243 on Elk, I'll make the same comment I made here a few years ago.

243 with 100 grain bullets at no more than 250 yards with a clear line of
sight and a good rest so you can shoot again is probably the very barest of
minimum. Some may say that is pushing your luck too.

Of course if you like to stalk your game, a 22 at point blank range will do
the job (shoot'm in the head) although I've never tried it and you would look
pretty silly popping out of the bushes wielding a 22 in front of a big bull. A
big bull or cow might very well just charge your a$$ for such a silly stunt.

On the safe side a 30-06 with 165 grain bullets is probably a better choice,
more reach, more kinetic energy, better chance of one-shot kill.

I've never hunted elk (nor ever suggested that people should hunt elk) with a 243. I think its kind of a theoretical lower limit. Kind of like it is theoretically possible to drown in freezing water for 30 minutes or more and still be resuscitated. Nice to know, but not something I want to try out.

The 243 is a great cartridge and have shot and used one for years on many mule deer (incidentally some say that is too light, which I disagree from experience). However I don't understand the 338RUM to 243 logic. There is a myriad of fine cartridges in between, why go to the edges of the spectrum? 308, 270, 7mm (mag, stw, Mauser, rum), etc all offer more massive bullets and are not nearly as punishing as the 338 in any flavor.

Plus from muzzle brakes, to recoil pads, to shooting jackets, to heavy guns there are lots of ways to make bigger cartridges more manageable and enjoyable when practicing.

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Joined: 07/01/2005
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

LOL Bitmasher,G1,I dont think my -06 kicks much more than a 243 with heavy bullets,I know a guy who took his son to New Zealand for stag and tar,his son took along his 243,14 yrs old,thier guide insisted that his son use one of thier rifles instead (I dont know the caliber),I do know he got a silver medal stag and a white tar wich is very rare.

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Location: Montana
Joined: 05/15/2005
Posts: 114
What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

when i first started hunting when i was 12 i used a 243 for deer but my dad would not let me use it for elk i used his 300 mag and a 25-06. the 243 is just too small a 100 gr bullet is the hottest loads you can buy.

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Location: Missouri/Arkansas
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

Generally speaking, yes, a 243 is too small, HOWEVER, if someone is an expert marksman, then there is no reason to think they can't do it, especially if they already have extensive experience hunting elk.

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Location: Montana
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What caliber do you use for elk? Me, I've switched to a 243

YES

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