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Discussion Starter #1
First post here - been lurking for quite a while & enjoying the discussion. Have been learning a lot.

Now I'm looking at a new rifle:
  • A fall moose hunt is primary task.
    Elk & buffalo likely in the future.
    Deere possible, but not likely as shotgun only in the zone I hunt.
    Assuming max 300 yards[/list:u]
    I've narrowed down my choices to the 7mm mag or 300 mag. I like the idea of a little less recoil with the 7mm, but I know both are sluggers. I'm not a huge guy (6'1" - 190) and have fired the 300 mag on multiple occasions.

    Would you recommend for or against the 7mm for moose? I know shot placement is primary concern & many moose have fallen to less powerful cartridges.
 

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You are going to here that you don't need a magnum for moose. But if you have made up your mind that you want one and can shoot one accurately and the little recoil increase does not bother you, then get one. Either the 7 mm or the 300 Win Mag will work great. I would lean more toward the 300 Win Mag myself. Shot placement, is key no matter what you shoot. Also make sure you chose a well constructed bullet for the large frame of the moose. :D
 

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Both of these calibers are good moose getters. I'd focus more on the bullet than the caliber. There's a good article in the August issue of Field & Stream on the strengths and weaknesses of various bullets by David Petzal. You might find it interesting. There's also pictures of expended bullets showing the degree of mushroom occurring. Personally I'd be leery of anything too streamlined that might pass through the animal without striking bone. Any animal that makes it back into the bush can be a nightmare to track. Just one mans opinion. Best wishes.

Cal - Montreal
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Magnums

I know that there are opinions all over the spectrum from the 338 ultra mag down to those that have taken moose with the 30-30.

I have been encouraged to go with the 300 win mag because of the larger selection of bullet weights available. I don't plan to hand load anytime in the near future, so that is an important consideration for me.

For whatever reason, I can't get excited about a 30-06 and the 270 seems a little on the light side for moose & buffalo. I know there are many on the forum that recommend the 7mm08 for most everyone. Do you have any specific cartridges that you would recommend for my situation?
 

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I've never hunted either, but I suggest the 300 since you mentioned buff. These are hard critters to put down and heavy, well constructed bullets are required.

Of course shot placement is everything, and if you already have shot the 300 you know what your getting.

A 200 or 220gr Nosler Accubond would open nicely on both and most likely never be recovered.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Cal - The bullet weight up to 220 gr is the reason the 300 has been recommended over the 7mm (factory loads to 175gr) to me in the past.

handi - already shooting the 300 goes both ways. I know I can shoot it, if only a handful of rounds at a time, but I also know I can only shoot it a handful of times :wink:

I know the great mag debate is going on over in the bolt action forum. As I mentioned, I don't plan to hand load any time soon & the availability of the often recommended 7mm-08 factory ammo doesn't seem to be that great. I am open to other suggestions.

Thanks for the replies. :grin:
 

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wooduck
How about the often overlooked 30-06. Since you're still looking for suggestions. It seems to me that all the issues have been addressed and if recoil is still a major issue than the next answer seems to step down. The 30-06 will handle 200 and 220gr loads easily, pushing a 200gr to 2500-2600fps.

With the '06 and moose, the 180gr in a premium bullet will most likely not be recovered. For the buff go with the heavier 30 cal bullets. If you are not afraid of the recoil you'll be a better shot anyway. That is a fact.
 

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This May sound funny to you and I am not trying to be so but before I make a recommendation I would like a little information on your experience. Both hunting and shooting. Lawdog
:D
 

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Given heavy enough bullets, if you can't kill a critter inside of 300 yards with a .30-06, you can't kill it with a .300 magnum. The only thing the magnum gives you is a little more range due to flatter trajectory.
 

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I hunted moose in Alaska with my 7mm Rem Mag and had no problem! I handloaded with 175 grain Speer Grand Slam bullets!
The 7 Mag will work!

The only time I carried anything bigger (375 H&H Mag) was if I was in an area where I suspected that there might be big bears!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Lawdog - your question is not funny. I have been hunting since I was about 13, albeit almost always with a shotgun. Deer, ducks, pheasants, & now turkeys the last few years. Regulations in the area do not allow rifle for deere in our area.

No rifle hunting of any sorts other than squirrels and rabbits with the 22. I've limited rifle shooting experience compared to most on this forum. Maybe get out twice a year and have had an opportunity to fire a limited selection of rifles and rounds over the last few years.

This will be my first chance to own a big game rifle myself.
 

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wood_duck said:
Lawdog - your question is not funny. I have been hunting since I was about 13, albeit almost always with a shotgun. Deer, ducks, pheasants, & now turkeys the last few years. Regulations in the area do not allow rifle for deere in our area.

No rifle hunting of any sorts other than squirrels and rabbits with the 22. I've limited rifle shooting experience compared to most on this forum. Maybe get out twice a year and have had an opportunity to fire a limited selection of rifles and rounds over the last few years.

This will be my first chance to own a big game rifle myself.
Considering your limited rifle shooting experience I would rather see you start with something like a .30-06 or if you really want a bit more power without the added recoil then go to the .300 WSM. There is not a Moose, Elk or American Buffalo(Bison) walking that you can't handle with either of these. Starting one out on a "magnum" rifle isn't a good idea as far as my experience goes. I love my magnums but not for hunters/shooters with limited experience. Lawdog
:D
 

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:grin: :grin: :grin: :grin:
Lawdog has it right. You need a .30-06.
 

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wood-duck –

Given your situation – shotguns only where you live, no intent to reload, max 300 yard shots (assumed) – I’m going to second or third the .30-06. Then I’m going to suggest Federal ammo using 180g Speer Trophy Bonded bullets for the moose and especially the buffalo. (Nothing wrong with using them on elk or deer, either, but for these you could drop to 165g. Also, I suggest you do most of your practicing with less expensive ammo.)

The primary reasons for the .30-06 are two-fold – recoil and ammo costs. Recoil of the 7mm Mag will be a bit less in many cases (load specific), but ammo costs for the 7mm will be more. Both will be in the 22-24 foot-pound range. (Jumping up to a .300 Win Mag will push recoil up to the 28-30+ foot-pound range.)

This from a person who has been using a 7mm Mag for over 20 years as my primary rifle for elk, mulies and antelope. I’ve always figured that if I hunted moose, big bears or buffalo I would get a rifle with a bigger bore. Kind of did that last Christmas (.300 Win Mag) but would prefer a .338 or my Marlin .45-70 for anything bigger than elk. My intent is not to see if my 7mm Mag is adequate but to ensure as rapid and humane a death as possible for the game I shoot, and I have come to believe that fatter bullets achieve that end more reliably – even if they are slower.

Don’t worry that the .30-06 is pushing 100 years – it’s still a fine round that will do 99% of what you need and you may never run into the remaining 1% (I haven’t). The best reason not to own a .30-06 is the truth in the old saying that “a man with a .30-06 doesn’t need anything else”.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Lawdog - I thought the .300 WSM essentially reproduced the .300 win mag loads... & therefore would show the same level of recoil. I have heard elsewhere that based on the powder, the perceived recoil is less. I ran across a thread where you had described no noticeable reduction with the WSM over the win mag :?

Regardless, I think I will probably go with a .30 caliber over the 7mm for the big game hunting I have planned.

Thanks :D
 

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wood_duck said:
Regardless, I think I will probably go with a .30 caliber over the 7mm for the big game hunting I have planned.

Thanks :D
Good choice. :D
 

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I would go with the 300 hands down. Because you may have a long shot and you'll need the power behind the 300's bullet. If your shot is going to be close then the 30/06 could do it. :D
 

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Another vote for the 30-'06.

Considering your experience with shotguns, you might also want to look at a Remington 7600 (especially if you use a Rem. 870 shotgun).
 

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Another vote for the 30-06. The magnums aren't really going to give you a real-world advantage inside the 300 yard limit you mentioned, and you will notice an increase in recoil over the 30-06 in a comparable weight rifle. If you really want an advantage over the '06 at that range and less with the big animals (particularly the Bison), I would seriously consider a 338-06 or 35 Whelen, because of a heavier, more durable bullet.

That said, I sold my 30-06 years ago, in favor of the 7mm Rem mag, and have regretted it ever since. But, I'm primarily a deer/black bear hunter, and IMO, the 7mm mag is too much gun for deer and smaller bears at under 300 yards. Also, ammo is more expensive, and if you handload, the 7mm magnum cases won't last as long as the '06.

I'm sure there are many who will disagree with me, but that is my (limited) experience and opinion. YMMV. Good luck and happy hunting.

Mike
 
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