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Reloading Berger Bullets


Berger VLD bullets as hunting bullets

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Unread 02-26-2008, 10:31 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: texas
Posts: 49
Blood trail and Bergers

Originally Posted by champion View Post
Where I hunt and the animal runs off 50 yds. without a blood trail you want be able to find it, I hunt pipelines running though thickets that you literally have to crawl though if you are not on the pipeline itself. I realize that hard to imagine but, it is true. So people for my purposes I need a blood trail not every deer you shot falls in it tracks; this is a longrange hunting site if you can't find where the animal was standing @ 500 yds. + or - how are you going to find the animal!
I agree with champion, without a blood trail things can be a little tough in recovery. Here in Texas where I am a guide and outfitter and whitetail ranch manager I am involved in the harvest of anywhere from 125 to 300 whitetail deer each year for the past 25 years. Blood trails are a welcome sight.
With the big 30's and bergers, a blood trail is a given on whitetails. Shooting down senderos at extended ranges it is hard to find withen 50 yds of where a deer was standing when you shot. If the ground is soft enough you can generally find skid marks where the deer left the sendero. If the ground is hard, or covered with grass then you have to lazer back to where you shot from to find where where the deer was standing.
Now this is where it gets interesting, 5 feet off the sendero the brush is often so thick you cannot walk on a direct route where you think the deer went. Visibility is often measured in feet, not yards. Most double lung shot deer will go about 70 yds max. So a blood trail is a welcome sight. Without blood you call in a search party.
A bullet that fails to exit the animal makes it twice as hard to recover. A mature whitetail buck that is hard into the rut is not overly impressed with 3000 + ftlbs of energy asorbed from a bullet that did not exit. Yes he is dead usually withen that 70 yd magic circle. But in our country 70 yds or 10 miles there is not a lot of difference. So asorbing all energy that a bullet has is not a valid argument.
Bergers are high on my list, I shoot them a lot, not because they kill better than any other bullet, (they don't) but because they shoot so well that you have more control in bullet placement.
One thing that I am sure of, if you put an expanding bullet thru both lungs, you will generally find him in less than 70 yds. Another thing is you need a little blood to point the way.
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Unread 02-27-2008, 02:36 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Great Falls, MT
Posts: 205
I'm thinking about trying Bergers in my soon to be received 300RUM but I want to use them on elk. From the sounds of things these are great bullets on deer/antelope; does anyone have any shots on bigger animals? My concern is that if they don't always pass through a deer, will they make it into the living room of an elk sized animal?

Thanks for any replies.
Genises 27-3: Now therefore take, I pray thee, thy weapons, thy quiver and thy bow, and go out to the field, and take me some venison...
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Unread 08-08-2009, 01:32 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Truckee
Posts: 293
Re: Berger VLD bullets as hunting bullets

In thick country that is hard to walk through, I would still use vld. Instead of using 243 with 95vld, it'll be a 300 win mag with 190vld @ 2950fps. Take that!!

Besides most of my folks can't stand bergers. We get enjoy it due to making fun of each other. An uncle told me if I can ever hit a muley, the buck will just look at it shoulder then look at me and walk off like it didn't hurt it. Then I told him back that if I hit within two feet of a deer, it will be cut and wrapped. LOL We just have our own preferences.
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Unread 09-27-2010, 12:23 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 92
Re: bergers

Originally Posted by pjracer View Post
I think I just made the switch after shooting today at least in 308 win from barnes,hornady etc to Bergers. I just get more consistancy and better accuracy.

I read that you were shooting bergers out of a 308, how did they do and what loads did you work up.
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Unread 09-27-2010, 04:08 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 102
Re: Berger VLD bullets as hunting bullets

Originally Posted by 284STW View Post
I have seen big game shot with just about every bullet out there and have shot game with Bergers myself. I switched from barnes bullets to Bergers because they shoot so well out of my STW. I honestly believe that the bergers will perform on game even with a poor shot. All of the premium bullets out there will work well on game inside their designed applications, I would find whatever works best in your rifle and use it. For me the bergers group well and perform better down range than most other hunting bullets. The higher BC gives you a better probability of making that good shot when wind or extended range is thrown into the mix. I truly believe that if you keep your shots inside the performance capabilities of the cartridge you are shooting you should have decent effectiveness on those less than perfect shots that most of us end up making at one time or another.
What bullet weight and powder are you using in the STW? I have a M70 Laredo and want to try some Bergers in it.
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Unread 09-30-2010, 06:15 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Star, ID
Posts: 344
Re: Berger VLD bullets as hunting bullets

We'll I've had split results. I am very happy with .284 168 grains on deer and elk. Internal damage is great. We shot 3 deer with a 25-06 and 115 grainers. All took multiple shots through the ribcage perfectly broadside and did not expand. The small .257 bullets passed through without touching bone. I'm sure they would have expanded had they touched bone. My son's buck absorbed 5 shots and the last two shots did hit bone and perform well, but the first three appeared as misses. His buck scored 192" so it was nerve racking. I'm not sure there is less reliability in the terminal performance in smaller calibers, or if I got a bad lot of bullets(I own 3 boxes). But again, I am very happy with 168 7mm and have converted friends to the same. 617 BC at 2975 fps convinced a friend to leave his 300 wby behind for deer.
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Unread 04-23-2011, 02:30 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 20
Re: Berger VLD bullets as hunting bullets

My shooting buddy is a professional hunting guide up in Northern Quebec and he has seen more failure with Berger hunting bullets in the last years that he has seen from Nosler (Partition) in his entire lifetime. On moose, his Nosler (Partition) record is 28 out fo 30 shoot mooses recovered.

Also, the main shop where I buy reloading supplies sells a lot of Berger hunting bullets and feedback is something like 50%-50% satisfaction from large game hunters while Hornady gets hight satisfaction and Nosler almost universal acclaim. My impression is that light construction bullets should not be used on large game and even medium sized game if using a smallish caliber like 243 Win.

Finally, many hunter use Sierra Match Kings (SMK) as hunting bullets and are very satisfied since they get great accuracy and effective range and still Sierra advises against using SMK for hunting since they're designed for accuracy not killing power.
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