Re: Who's using the 30-06
I have a 30-06 built on a Remington model 700 BDL action by Mark Bansner with a 24” Lilja fluted barrel wearing a 3x10x42 Swarovski scope in medium-low Leupold dual dove tail mounts. It is a superbly accurate sporter that weighs 8 pounds with sling and loaded with 4 shells in the chamber and magazine. I use only hand-loads that can be loaded up to at least 270 pressures. I can get almost 3100 fps out of 150 grain Nosler Partitions and a compressed load of RL 22 gives me about 2700 with 200 grain Nosler Partitions. Moose, elk, black bears, and deer all fall down dead when hit in the chest with any one of these bullets. This is my go-to rifle more often than not when I don’t use a specialized super 300 magnum bean-field rifle.
My go-to load is a hot dose of H4350 using 165 grain Nosler Partitions between 2950 and 3000 fps. I can get between 2850 and 2900 fps out of the 180 grain Partitions at the price of more recoil and I have not seen any difference in terminal performance on game up through the size of elk, so I mostly use 165s. With my normal go-to load, I am really comfortable hitting balloons or gallon jugs of water up to 425 yards.
47 grains of DuPont 4895 gives me +2700 fps with 150 grain Accubond bullets and this is the mild, “managed recoil” load for trigger time practice or a nice load for junior hunters or women to hunt with at ranges less than 250 yards. This is still faster than a 300 Savage.
These are absolutely the best of times with regard to the hunting bullets we shoot. As I try to remind my heavy recoil absorbing, magnum hunting buddies, the bullet kills the animal, not the rifle! Other than grizzlies, the majority of the big game we hunt is normally safely taken by bow and arrow hunters so any well constructed, modern 25 caliber bullet and up driven into the chest of North America’s game animals, ends the hunt every time. It is 100% about bullet placement best done with milder recoiling rifles and the 30-06 has been doing this for over a century.
Any of the cartridges, up or down in bullet diameter, that are based on the 30-06 case are excellent choices because the amount of powder they hold makes them easy to shoot in the field and with today's deadly bullets, lethal on game.