If I was in your shoes, this is what I would do.
1. Tikka T3 Stainless ($699 / 6lb 3oz) (Caliber is up to you, I like a 300 WSM)
2. Bell & Carlson Medalist stock (w/aluminum bedding block) ($260 / +3oz approximately)
3. Talley Lightweight 1 piece mounts ($45 / 2oz)
4. Leupold Ultralight 3-9x33mm w/CDS dials ($500 maybe less if you can find a deal/ 9.8oz)
Re: the stock change. The factory stock from Tikka is super cheap feeling and doesn't handle recoil well. The felt recoil dropped dramatically when I changed the stock out, and it handled significantly better.
All together you will have a rifle that will shoot sub-moa / weather proof / great adjustable trigger / good glass / lightweight 7 lb 2oz w/optics / all for $1500 MSRP. Use the extra money in your budget for some top quality boots and pack, IMO these will get you farther back into the back country than a light rifle.
BTW: I did do this, I just wish they had made CDS dials when I got mine.
Last edited by mnhunter; 08-15-2013 at 09:17 AM.
ruger m77 allweather is a good mountain gun.
I have a custom .300 Wby that weighs in at around 8# with a sling and full of ammo. I also have a muzzle break to cut the recoil down while I'm at the range. I can be screwed off if you want to while your in the field. I don't use it for deer, thats for my M77 Ruger 25-06. Muzzle breaks make a lot of sense for light guns in big calibers. You should consider using your M70 in 270....great for deer and with the right bullet will do just fine on elk too. great piece to start with. Comp stock will help immensely.
My Ruger is a tang safety, 1975 vintage and shoots sub moa out to 500 yds.
My turkey gun (a Browning BPS) is 10 ga and its does belt you around.!
Cowboy Action Shooter; Endowment Life Member-NRA
The Original Rocket Scientist-Retired
"My Father always considered a walk in the mountains as the equivalent of church going."