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Rifle types?

Old 09-27-2017, 09:00 AM
  #11  
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I don't know how much I can add to the discussion. I think you just have to make up your mind what you like better. A mountain rifle probably has a SHORT sporter barrel. Your .300 Winchester Magnum might not perform as well out of a short barrel -- not delivering the muzzle velocity and trajectory flatness it is famed for. On the other hand, you mention a "long range rifle" and mention a "bull barrel." That kind of rifle is likely to be heavy. There is a middle ground -- a normal sporter rifle, such as the Remington 700 BDL or Winchester Model 70 standard grade. I would think this middle kind of rifle would deliver the reputed performance of the .300 Winchester magnum without being too heavy to carry in the field.


By the way. I hunt with a Springfield .30-06 my father made. It has a solid walnut stock -- probably thicker than factory made stocks -- and a longer length of pull (15.5 inches versus 13.5 inches as customary in factory rifles). It is relatively heavy -- probably about 11 LBS with scope. I hunt at 11,500 feet and may hike in as much as 3 miles to hunt, and then hike back out 3 miles. Yes, it is a heavy rifle, but a standard weight rifle isn't going to be a negligible weight either. And this pales by comparison anyway when you start packing out elk meat on your back. People will agonize over 1/2 pound or a pound of weight during hunting . . . and then pack out 60 LBS of meat. Is a pound of weight in a rifle that big a deal?
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Old 09-27-2017, 09:21 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Alsatian View Post
There is a middle ground -- a normal sporter rifle, such as the Remington 700 BDL or Winchester Model 70 standard grade. I would think this middle kind of rifle would deliver the reputed performance of the .300 Winchester magnum without being too heavy to carry in the field.
A good common sense approach. I would go with a stainless model with a good synthetic stock. A 300 WM with a barrel shorter that 24"- 26" is not going to give you anything a 30-06 with the same length barrel would except more noise and recoil.

I do not believe the Mountain Rifle is offered in 300 WM, or any other magnum chambering.
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Old 10-26-2017, 07:08 AM
  #13  
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+1 on the 30-06. great ballistics and much cheaper to feed. lots of ammo, usually available everywhere. cheaper ammo means you will shoot it more and become more proficient, which is THE MOST important, right?

300 WM is a kicker. fun if you want big, but big isn't always better.

just sayin'
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Old 10-26-2017, 10:00 AM
  #14  
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Unless you are only chasing trophy bull elk (fully-mature, six point or better), I’d probably not go with a hard recoiling round like the .300 Win Mag. While it is a splendid elk cartridge, it isn’t very fun to shoot at the bench and really isn’t necessary for 95% of all “Western” hunting.

Any standard cartridge from .25 - .30 cal is fine, with proven rounds like the .25-‘06 Rem, 270 Win, .280 Rem, .308 Win and .30-‘06 being your best bet. Even smaller rounds such as the .257 Roberts, .260 Rem, 6.5 Creedmoor, 6.5x.284 Norma, 7mm-08 Rem and 7x57 Mauser are outstanding Western cartridges that can be made up in light rifles that don’t kick. In fact, my two longest shots on game animals were both taken with a 6.5x.284: 435 yards on a huge bull elk (125gr Nosler Partition) and 400 yards on a trophy Pronghorn (120gr Nosler Ballistic Tip). Both dropped at impact and did not move.

I know it isn’t sexy, but you’d be hard-pressed to beat the .30-‘06 for a Western rifle to hunt elk and everything else with.

If you’re going to be hunting Mule Deer and Pronghorn, something like the .257 Roberts, .260 Rem or the mighty .25-‘06 are perfect.

Mostly deer with an occasional elk hunt, something like the 6.5 Creedmoor, .280 Rem or the classic .270 Win are perfect.

A good variable scope with anywhere from 9X - 16X magnification on the upper end is great out here, as is a good rangefinder.

If I didn’t have what I need already and if I lived back east and wanted a sweet Western rifle, I’d pick a Winchester Model 70 Extreme Weather SS in the classic Western cartridge...the .270 Winchester...and top it with a Leupold VX-5 HD 3-15x44 CDS-ZL2 mounted in Talley LW rings.

Last edited by seattlesetters; 10-26-2017 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 10-27-2017, 12:50 AM
  #15  
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A lot of it is circumstantial, for us cold weather hunters I've got 20 pounds of clothing and boots on, the scoped light weight rifle (with ammo) adds 8-10 pounds. I have a backpack with all the stuff I need during a day hunt/hike (snacks, water, knives and stuff, 10 more pounds. That's 40lbs of gear. THEN,,, then, if I'm lucky I'll be dragging a 80-200 pound deer back to camp. Keeping weight down is important, not that 3 more pounds is the end of the world, but when your cold, wet and tired, those 3 extra pounds feel like a hundred. Most people don't have the skills to repeatedly hit a 8" paper plate size target at 400 yards in a hunting situation. Furthermore, why can't they close that gap to 200 yards? If your driving around in your car looking for game you can take any long gun you want. If you're hiking and hunting, do what you can to keep weight down.
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Old 10-27-2017, 07:26 AM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by mikescooling View Post
... Most people don't have the skills to repeatedly hit a 8" paper plate size target at 400 yards in a hunting situation. Furthermore, why can't they close that gap to 200 yards? ...
My thoughts exactly every time I time I watch some TV "hunter" shoot at an animal on the next mountain or across several canyons.
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Old 10-27-2017, 02:35 PM
  #17  
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Originally Posted by mjw176 View Post
Hello there!
I have an odd question for you all. I don't have experience with hunting styles except for PA and MD whitetails. I am thinking of purchasing a new rifle for some possible out west mountain hunting. I am not understanding why some people strive for a light weight short rifle and other say the perfect hunting rifle is a Long range rifle that seem to weigh twice as much. I am looking into the standard 300 Winmag. If you were to choose one type either Lighter weight(standard) rifle or the special Long range for the money? I don't see why for hunting the extra Bull barrel and weight will make for better accuracy at long range that a one shot same caliber standard rifle will not do?
"Out West mountain hunting" covers a lot of hunting and areas, not to mention methods of hunting. Do you have some idea of what states and game you think you'd like to hunt? Do you like or think you'll be hunting from a tree stand or ground blind or do you expect to spot and stalk or still hunt? Providing more information could help members narrow this down quite a bit for you.

Everybody has given you quite a bit of good information and advice based on their experiences. Some of the people on here guide hunters and others have enough knowledge and experience to be a guide. Some of them have taken over a hundred animals which is an impressive amount of big game hunting experience. Just off the top of my head, I believe most of those members who have taken 100+ big game animals use "standard rifles." I don't recall any of them mentioning a heavy barrel target rifle and most of them haven't mentioned lightweight mountain rifles either. I happen to agree with them and use standard rifles also.
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Old 10-27-2017, 05:46 PM
  #18  
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When it comes to hunting rifles in the mountains, I am a Goldilocks kind of a guy. This one is toooo heavy, this one is tooo light. This one is juuust right!

I don't like heavy or light rifles. I have always used standard rifles that are middle of the road in weight when I scope them.

Really light guns tend to wobble too much as I catch my breath when I am trying to aim at an elk. And too heavy guns are just too heavy. Normal guns are OK to carry and have the right weight to be stable when I aim.

You probably don't want to even think about shooting beyond 400 yards out there, and pretty much any gun is capable of doing that if you are. Don't sweat it. Just find a gun that "feels good" in your hands that you won't mind carrying and you will be just fine.
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Old 10-28-2017, 04:07 AM
  #19  
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Originally Posted by mjw176 View Post
Hello there!
I have an odd question for you all. I don't have experience with hunting styles except for PA and MD whitetails. I am thinking of purchasing a new rifle for some possible out west mountain hunting. I am not understanding why some people strive for a light weight short rifle and other say the perfect hunting rifle is a Long range rifle that seem to weigh twice as much. I am looking into the standard 300 Winmag. If you were to choose one type either Lighter weight(standard) rifle or the special Long range for the money? I don't see why for hunting the extra Bull barrel and weight will make for better accuracy at long range that a one shot same caliber standard rifle will not do?
trust me, weight makes a more accurate rifle! here is my proof
I own 2 rifles, both 700 Remington's, both are turn key custom rifles, both are equipped with Lilja 9 twist 7mm barrels, both will run a 160 accubond at 3300+ fps, both will shoot in the .3" range at 100 yards. at 750 yards the rifle that weighs 14# will average 4" groups, the 8.5# rifle has not broke 8". now, I know a 14# rifle is impossible to use on most western hunts, but weight makes a difference.
RR
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Old 10-28-2017, 01:43 PM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by MudderChuck View Post
...And lastly IMO the only way to shoot long range is sitting at a shooting table or prone. Those magnums will punish you in the prone position. My 7mm Mag has been collecting dust in the safe for decades, it is no fun to shoot.
I grew up in Colorado and have lived almost all of my life in either Colorado or Montana. I was 19 when I started big game hunting and my first centerfire rifle was a "standard" .30-06. For about 10 years I shot my Mule deer and Elk every year with that .30-06. I then had it re-chambered to .30 Gibbs which gave me almost .300 Win mag ballistics.


I was 54 when I bought my first Magnum rifle, a "standard" Remington 700 in 7 mm Rem mag. Five years later I bought a .375 Rem Ultra Mag for an African Cape buffalo hunt. It was also a "standard" rifle with a 26" barrel. That rifle was the hardest kicking rifle that I had ever shot, and on its first trip to the range I quit shooting it after 6 shots.


There are things you can do to a rifle to reduce the "felt recoil". The first thing that I did to that .375 RUM was to put into a custom stock that fit me. I then had a KDF muzzle brake installed on it and I put a "recoil reducer" in its stock.


After those alterations, I was able to work up a sub moa load for it with .300 grain bullets and later another sub moa load with 270 grain bullets. I took that rifle on two African hunts and I comfortably shot several animals with it from prone positions.


Seven years ago I bought a .300 Weatherby. Before I ever shot it I made the same alterations to it that I had done to my .375 RUM - a stock that fits me, a KDF muzzle brake, and an in-stock recoil reducer. Its felt recoil now is less than the recoil of my .308 Win in the same weight rifle.


This .300 Weatherby has quickly become my favorite rifle, and I have shot at least 6 big game animals with it from prone positions. For the past few years I shoot a half dozen or so shells almost every week at the range from the prone position with my .300 Weatherby.


So far this year I shot a Dagestan Tur in Azerbaijan with my .300 Weatherby from a prone position, and Caribou in Quebec with my 7 mm Rem mag from a prone position.


My magnum rifles do not uncomfortably kick me and they are not safe queens!
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