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    308 caliber best (in your opinion) for elk

    Hello all

    I love my trusty savage 308. Had it for years an years. When elk hunting I've used mainly a 165 gr hornady round. I love the round an weight, plenty of stopping power with a well placed shot......with that said. What's are some of y'all's favorite in 308? I'm wanting to try something else if I'm missing out on a great round. Thanks in advance

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    165 in .308 are about as good as you can use. have you tried 150? may shoot straighter for ya and still has more than enough umph to bring that beast down. but if 165 has been working for ya, stick with it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ivorytip View Post
    165 in .308 are about as good as you can use. have you tried 150? may shoot straighter for ya and still has more than enough umph to bring that beast down. but if 165 has been working for ya, stick with it.
    I haven't no. I must admit I was kind of grandfathered into the 165 (dad shot it). But I was just Curious about it after a recent trip to the range and thinking about bullet drop an muzzle v. I'll more than likely stick with what I'm use to but wanted to Know if I was missing the ticket on a "better round"

    Thanks Ivory

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    Not trying to start anything, but my baseline performance measurement is 3000fps and .308 doesn't make it. All my big game rifles hit that mark or better. I am sure that my baseline is way to high for lots of whitetail hunters, but I hunt the west almost almost exclusively. The 3k fps gives me great performance out to 400+ yds.

    With that said, I also firmly believe that you must be very confident in your gun and shoot it a lot. The more comfortable it is, the better shooter you become. Use it, practice and get good with it.
    Last edited by Colorado Cowboy; 11-03-2013 at 10:46 AM.
    Colorado Cowboy
    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."
    Aldous Huxley

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    My girlfriend just shot her elk yesterday with 150 grain billets from her 308. It did the job but it was a well placed shot as well

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    seen a moose drop in its tracks with a .270 chambered with 130g last week. 100yrds

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    After a weekend at the long range in bv I switched to a nosler in 165. Shot tighter an flatter for me.

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    ddress00,

    The .308 Winchester cartridge is enigma. It's also one of the best cartridges for all North American game. Lots of Rocky Mountain hunters use it.

    After climbing all over the Rockies carrying a heavy rifle, I began to understand utility of a lightweight rifle. So I bought one. But before I did, I did a lot of research. Initially I was going to go with a .280 Rem or an '06. I was surprised by what I had learned. The .308 Win is an efficient cartridge. It is an inherently accurate cartridge. It is a powerful cartridge. And it's a short-action cartridge. To my way of looking at big game hunting, that combo is hard to beat.

    Hunters will campfire banter about merits of their favorite cartridges and why they're better killers than other cartridges. Emotionalism does not defeat knowledge. When using practical, western .308 caliber hunting bullets of 180 grains & less, there is virtually no difference of impact velocities between the deservedly venerated '06 and the .308 Win.

    I can go on forever about the merits of the .308 Win, but I'll just post velocities I've chrono'd out of my 22" barreled, bolt action .308 Win with factory ammo:

    1. Hornady 165 grain Light Magnum: 2900+ FPS
    2. Federal Classic 150 grain: 2900+ FPS
    3. R-P 150 grain Core-Lokt: 2900+ FPS
    4. Federal Premium 165 grain 2700+ FPS
    6. R-P 180 grain Core-Lokt 2700+ FPS

    I do not recall any ammo shooting above MOA.

    While I've never shot an elk with my .308 Win, I wouldn't hesitate to do so. The .308 Win will destroy any elk's heart and/or lungs just as surely as any other cartridge. And I do know from my own experience that mule deer will die when hit with a .308 Win bullet. I would not hesitate to hunt elk with a .308 Win.

    The .308 Win in a lightweight rifle will not bruise a hunter's shoulder. Its accuracy instills confidence. After carrying heavy rifles for far too long, one grows to appreciate a short-action, lightweight, powerful rifle.

    BTW, I've recently read an article that indicated that the .308 Win has passed the '06 in popularity. The '06 needs no accolades from me. It has done everything on the North American continent and others.

    To answer your question: were I limited to one .308 Win bullet it would be the Hornady 165 grain Light Magnum. Right on its heels would be the R-P 180 Core-Lokt.

    My hunting experiences have taught me that the dominant criteria of success are hunters' skills in finding game, maneuvering into position for advantageous shots (A bad shot is a bad shot regardless of cartridge.) and accuracy skills. Any suitable cartridge will kill. No animal can live sans heart and/or lungs. The adage that a .243 Win to heart and/or lungs is a whole lot better than an '06 to the guts is right on target, so to write. And we certainly cannot lose sight of the fact that our hunting forefathers killed all North American big game with surplus 7x57 & .303 British rifles. So it ain't cartridges alone that kill. Hunters' skills at putting bullets where they need to be factor heavily in the game-killing equation.

    Next elk season I ought to be in one of Utah's premier trophy elk units. I will use my .270 Win as my primary rifle. And I will take my .308 Win as its back-up. I am trusting what might be a once-in-a-lifetime trophy elk hunt to these two cartridges. That's how respectful I am at them.
    Last edited by SansSouci; 11-23-2013 at 10:55 AM.

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  10. #9
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    I would try 150 grain Barnes bullets, or one of the other 100% copper bullets. You'd get more velocity than you do with the 165's, and a bullet that retains 90% or more of its weight. A hard combination to beat. With a more conventional type bullet, I'd agree with the 165's.

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    So a .300 win mag loaded with a 180 gr Partition wouldn't be enough for you? It blew a big hole through my mulie at 320 yards this season, and I would have bet any elk would have dropped there. I'm not arguing, just curious. So you believe speed kills? I haven't decided my part on that argument. If you love speed, get 7.82 Warbird! You'll be getting close to 4000 FPS with a 150 gr bullet haha.

    Quote Originally Posted by Colorado Cowboy View Post
    Not trying to start anything, but my baseline performance measurement is 3000fps and .308 doesn't make it. All my big game rifles hit that mark or better. I am sure that my baseline is way to high for lots of whitetail hunters, but I hunt the west almost almost exclusively. The 3k fps gives me great performance out to 400+ yds.

    With that said, I also firmly believe that you must be very confident in your gun and shoot it a lot. The more comfortable it is, the better shooter you become. Use it, practice and get good with it.

 

 

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