.308 load for MN black bear?

Discussion in 'Bear Hunting' started by emn83, Apr 20, 2012.

  1. emn83

    emn83 Well-Known Member

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    So, I've been told by a friend of mine to enter the lottery for a MN bear license this year (it's free so what the heck, right?). This got me to thinking about what ammo for my .308 to use for hunting. MN black bears range in size from 150-500 lbs, though the average is more in the 200-300lbs range. Pretty much all shots are closer range, under 200 yards and most shots are within bow distance at 20-30 yards, at least where we will be hunting. I just started hand loading, so it's not a problem to make my own rounds. I am thinking about something along the lines of 180gr Hornady Interbonds and try to run them at around 2600fps. Anyone have suggestions?
     
  2. JimBoIHN

    JimBoIHN Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like you need a big, slow bullet that could go through some brush without exploding. Just glanced at the Hornady 220 gr InterLock RN. Some of the guys should be able to advise if it might work. You would still want some long range rounds in your pocket for the occasional longer shot. How slow could said bullet be loaded, anyone?
     

  3. emn83

    emn83 Well-Known Member

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    somehow blanked on wanting something that could break brush. Thanks for pointing that out
     
  4. HARPERC

    HARPERC Well-Known Member

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    I've never had much luck shooting through brush with anything shoulder mounted. I haven't had a 308 for a very long time, when I shot 220 Silvertips in a 600 Remington it tested my dental work every time. It also left lengthy wound channels, and decisive exit holes. The 220 grain Nosler partition is also a solid performer up close. I haven't shot the Hornady 220, but have no doubts it would perform up close.
    Big bears + thick cover + close range + bad angles (possibly going away) = tough tracking
    Exit holes mean a lot to me in these situations.
    I'd consider the 200 Accubond. It will give a bit better performance at moderate ranges , and won't give up much in close. Just rough numbers, but if you use 1800fps as minimum for expansion the Nosler 220 at 2400fps fades under this past about 250 yards, the 200 Accubond at 2500fps drops below this at 450 yards.
    Others prefer some of the harder monometal bullets, but these 2 have worked for me in a variety of 30 caliber rifles. Good Luck!
     
  5. hunterbob

    hunterbob Well-Known Member

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    When I hunted in the Adirondacks of NY my partner and i always used a 180 gr Silver tip in our 308's.... No special bullet or reloads. We shot two bears with them. No problems anchoring them.

    With dangerous game I recommend factory rounds especially if you're a beginner at reloading. I have reloaded for over 35 years and use factory ammo for dangerous game.:)
     
  6. Dalebow

    Dalebow Well-Known Member

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    I killed both my black bears and my wolf with a 150gr Hornady GMX, superformance out of my single shot CVA Apex. DRT!!!
    Ive killed a 500 Black bear, which if you see one in MN shoot it because they dont come that big very often, but a MN bear will fail to any 308 load 150gr or bigger, if you want a 165 or 180 to make you feel better that is great but its not needed.
     
  7. 436

    436 Well-Known Member

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    .308 Winchester.... 180gr Super-X Power Point muzzle velocity at 2620fps the energy is about 2743ft-lbs.This is a great hunting bullet for average size bear. Very accurate in a good hand load.. or heck don't have time buy a box of factory.
    436
     
  8. hunterbob

    hunterbob Well-Known Member

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    I use the Sierra SPBT 150 gr. bullet with 3031 and its fine for me, on coyotes hogs, lions or whatever When I go after something big like bears , I use 168 gr, but it really doesn't matter what bullet you got, its where you place the shot, and "if" the bullet goes off too. I seen this happen before (back in the 60's) in the north country when temperatures were below zero, and just a click>>> when my partner (reloads) pulled the trigger on a pack of wolves.
    We laughed about it afterwards but let me tell you, it was cold that morning. He put the round on a stump and when the sun came up it shined right on that stump where that bullet sat. After about 20 minutes in the sun,,, it went Kaboom!!! That's how cold it was there.....:cool:
     
  9. 436

    436 Well-Known Member

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    Well my friend'..., that's pretty damn cold, when you have a firing pin strike on a cartridge primer... that didn't go off, and later; when setting in the sunshine on a stump it goes off!... Yep'.., I don't think this city boy has ever heard of that one before. As I said; roll your own or buy a box of factory with the same 180gr WW PP's.. either way they work great.

    436 :)

    PS: You weren't hunting up hill in both directions that day were you? Nah.. stupid question, never mind. :rolleyes:
     
  10. hunterbob

    hunterbob Well-Known Member

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    Matter of fact I think we were LMAO ! I got another story too, about a buck I shot, but getting ready to leave right now for a hog hunt... Later dude LOL:)
     
  11. 436

    436 Well-Known Member

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    Love to hear the deer hunt story sometime.... Good luck on your hog hunt, watch out for the ones that fly.... LOL
    436
     
  12. emn83

    emn83 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the input guys. as of now, I'm planning to put off making a bear load till summer, and work on my deer/target load for now, to build up some experience. The factory ammo route hasn't been ruled out, But with the hand loading bug having bitten, it's very tempting to make my own bear round