For the last few years I have been shooting the 150 grain 0.308 Accubond in my 14 twist ML.
We have been having some unusually cold weather and since I unload at the end of my hunt I always check my zero vs POA.
Well the temperature two weeks ago was in the low 20's (F) and I had never shot in those temperatures before. Luckily I was on a friends property where he has a 300 yard range. As I went to leave I shot at the target then drove over to the 4x4 target backstop and there was not a hole to be found. I assumed a load issue since a few weeks earlier my load was about 6 inches low and now not on a 4 foot target!
I drove back, and reloaded, shot and again found no bullet holes!
Relieved that I had not seen a giant buck that morning I decided to re-evaluate the minimal twist I have for the Accubond.
Using Don Millers formula the Accubond is barely over 1.0 at the temperature I was shooting whereas I am sort of OK and accurate above 30 degrees.
I decided to go back to the 200 grain 8mm Sierra Match King which is much more stable but since it is a Match bullet tends to cause massive wounds and I worried about penetration if I hit big bones going in and lack of expansion if I hit none.
Well this morning found me in a treestand with a view of no more than 200 yards in what I would consider not quite mature Oak woods. With many small trees even 100 yard shots are only available in certain lanes.
At about 8:20 I see a group of deer running down a field edge about 200 yards away on the neighbors property. A few minutes later I see 5 antlerless deer walking the property line right at 105 yards. I find the largest and try to hit the close front leg to ensure the very small hollow point will expand and hope for a bang flop so I don't need to ask the neighbor for permission to track the deer.
BANG! All the deer run deeper into our property but nothing is on the ground and nothing falls within my view!!
All the deer are gone so I get down and walk to where she last was walking in case she fell behind a tree and I just missed it.
Just before I get where she was standing I spot a few flecks of blood on the snow and now I worry that I hit just the leg.
10 more yards and now the blood is spraying...15 more yards and there is 1/2 of a Liver lying in the snow!
Obviously worried that I gut shot her, but with the liver blown to pieces I figure she can't go far even with a gut shot.
I follow sprayed blood for almost 100 yards and there she is....
As I look at the shot placement I see no obvious entrance wound, but intestines hanging out a massive hole in the middle of her chest on the off side!
I gut her and find a 8mm size hole in between two ribs about midway up the body, and without any bone breakage just behind the heart.
The exit wound took out 3 ribs about 4 inches wide by 3 inches high all 5 inches IN FRONT of the diaphragm!!
I can only imagine the hydraulic actions that would cause this destruction on such a scale. Fortunately zero meat lost although the backstraps probably are bruised. How she made it that far without lungs, ejected liver, and partially ejected intestines is just amazing!
My camera was dead as the deer so I just hung her in the barn.
Here are some pictures from the next day.
They aren't great and since the deer is hanging by the neck the skin does not align with the wounds.
Here is the entrance wound as seen from the inside. The outside was not visible without moving the hair aside so not worth the picture. Not that clear since I had to try to hold the chest open and take the picture too while she was hanging.
The hole is perfectly round and is the small black dot in the wound. It did just barely nick the rib but does not appear to have done any real damage there or to have expanded as the hole is right about caliber size and round.
Unfortunately the hide conceals the damage, about the size of your fist.
You can see where the diaphragm is in relation to the wound, I'd say about 5 inches.
Here is the exit wound as viewed from the outside. The hole in the ribs is at the top of the hide wound since she hanging by the neck. If I had a helper I would have slid the hide up to show a hand for a size comparison and to show the hole all the way through.