As far as I can tell the best rifle is the one that you've got with you.....
(1)Remington 870 w/camo stock in 12ga. that takes quite a few, up close and personal...,
(2) I've got a Rock River/ Predator/Pursuit AR-15 .223 with Falcon Menace 4-14x44FFP - depending on the load (from 40gr V-Max to 75gr Berger VLD's) you can shoot at 50yrds or 500yrds. with not a lot of damage to pelt.
(3) next is a Remington 700BDL w/22" barrel in .243win, shoots from 55gr to 100gr, w/Leupold 3.5-10AO Vari-xIII. It's light easy to carry, accurate. If you need to walk or want a weapon in the back of the pick-up, this is the ticket. It has a synthetic stock so it can bounce around, if it has to and finally.
(4)My Savage 12FLV w/Choate varmint stock/tactical bolt, accutrigger set at 1 1/2#'s/Harris bi-pod/Farrell base (10moa) and rings linked to a Leupold 6.5-20x50mm LR/T with varmint reticle. oh it's in 308win, usually loaded with 150gr Nosler balistic tips. This rig will reach them at 600 and a little beyond.
That's it, something for up close, something for walking, something to use in a blind or stand (bails of hay, etc.) . I simply depends on your situation....
I hope that doesn't muddy the water. But as far as I'm concerned there is not a correct answer, maybe it boils down to what i said first, the rifle you have with you at the time. lol......
sounds like you are very well equipted, for yote hunting , my guns are just pretty much stock shooters, as long as they hit what im shooting at thats all i worry about , and they do about 90% of the time the other times i just run out of talent,i hunt about 6 days aweek for a few hrs. in the morning, then about 6:30 in the evening i drive around the ranch shooting pigs . so i usually carry 2 guns, one for pigs the other for yotes,
I don’t think there’s any “best” cartridge for Yotes. In the Northwest, Wash, Oregon, Idaho and Montana where I hunt most my Yotes; the pair that works for me is my; .224 Wby Varmintmaster which is the older miniature action and a 22-250 Varmintmaster converted, “also older miniature action” into a 6XC; both use Leupold 3.5-10x40 VariX III with mil dots. These two rifles; are two of the must comfortable rifles I’ve ever used in the field, light, and accurate and you can walk with them all day. The 224 Wby with Barns 50gr VLC’s is a hammer, when I need a little more range I go to the 6XC with 70gr to 105gr bullets.
The reason I changed the .22-250 to the 6XC was for extra range, plus the .22-250 was getting a little long in the tooth’…, I had killed many, many Yotes with it in .22-250. The new 6XC barrel was turned to factory spec’s take off barrel so nothing would have to be done to the original Wby stock…. Just in case I wanted to put the old barrel back on. Weatherby Mk V Varmintmaster 22.250
I hate to say this but I dont think its possible. In my expierenc all the varmit cartridges I have tried, (204,223,22-250,243,6mm) all have there times where they will leave holes or not. I have shot yotes with all of the above and they all work. some leaving largeholes and some blowing up inside. as far as cats i have only shot them with the 204 and 223 with both leaving large exit holes. i have since went with the 17hmr for cats if im wanting pelt preservation. you could try the 17fireball and see if it exits or not. its just my expierence though.
I agree on the .17hmr for cats to keep pelt damage down. I usually carry a .223 with 55 grain nosler ballistic tips for coyotes. When cats are in season here in Oklahoma, I take the .17hmr.
"You may find me one day, dead in a ditch somewhere. But by God, you'll find me in a pile of brass"
Guys, I have been hunting coyotes since1960 amd I can tell you that you might as well put away the little22 cals when you get serious. If you are worried about the pelt shoot a controlled expansion like the barnes x, just shoots threw the coyote with a small exit wound. When I hunt in snowing conditions the 22-50 bullets will sometimes not make the target but my .264 always does. I recently bored out my 264 win mag to a 7mm dakota case necked down to .264 and I love it. Faster and more accurate. 3850 with a 108 grain lapua. Also, I use the burris balistic plex scope but use the cross hair for 300,400,500,600,740,875 and 1050. No dial turning and fast changing from one coyote at 200 to one at 600. With a coyote I dont have time to figure out how many moa or clicks it is to shoot 550. Shot a coyote at 873 a month ago. Less than 200, the 22s are fine unless its blowing 20-30, then shoot high bc bullets. Just some thoughts from an old timer. larry