Re: All Around North American Big Game Rifle
I think every shooter goes through this very question at least once in their life. For me it was answered with a Browning SS A-bolt 300 Win Mag with a Leupold 3-10.5x50 scope from Premier Reticles and the RC600 dots on the reticle. I went with the browning as it has outstanding workmanship (I also own Savage and Remington). They pay attention to the little things, like a magazine that doesn't allow the tips of bullets to hit the front of the mag on recoil, etc. I went with Stainless as I hunt in all sorts of weather and I don't want to worry about rust. One hunt I was on in Alberta in the late fall an ice fog rolled in, during the day as we were stalking we had rind ice build up on the guns making them slippery to hold.
For the scope I decided on one with a good reputation and a good warranty. That left only Leupold. I went with Premier Reticles dot system as I thought it was pretty ingenous and it has sure paid off. I knocked down a whitetail buck at around 300 yards almost the moment I saw him by using the 1st come-up dot (300 yard dot) in the scope. It was a heart shot and he hit the ground dead.
To be honest today's rifles and most scopes are good, start looking for things like comfort, fit, WARRANTY!!, ruggedness, etc.
I think the more important question is what would be an all-around caliber. To me that was 300 Win Mag - then again I live in the west and hunt elk, bear, as well as deer. The 300 WM gives you another 100 yards over a 30-06 for those longer shots. But out East the bush is a little more dense and I would imagine long shots are more of a rarity.