Long Range Dangerous Game?

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by ceg1963, May 27, 2005.

  1. ceg1963

    ceg1963 Well-Known Member

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    Hello,

    Does anyone here on this site hunt, or know of anyone who hunts dangerous game, using longrange specialized equipment and or longrange techniques? If so, what equipment do you, or they, use?

    Please this is not a discussion about this favorite caliber or that, or the virtues of a CRF versus a PF action. I'd like true practical experience(s), combined with insite on equipment the used.

    I am particularily thinking about griz and or brown bear at long ranges (500-1000 yards). Is this a feasible idea? If not why? If we can take elk sized animals and deer at exteme ranges... why not dangerous game like griz, lion or cape buffaloe? I can't help but think that many opportunities at these animals are passed every year due to a lack: of training, understanding of the real limitation(s) of ballistics, and or the proper equipment needed. If you have a tag, and the opportunity arises, why not execute the kill?

    I know that many bears in Alaska are killed during spot and stalk hunting on foot, or via float trips and or coastal hunts in Alaska. Some bears are killed when the hunter is surprised at close range. Many are killed under 200 yards because of a guide or self imposed hunter range restriction.

    Do you think the powerful .375s will get it done at longer ranges? IE .375 R.U.M.. I am currently leaning towards the .378 Weatherby pushing 300s grain at 3000 FPS. Or the .416 Rigby pushing 400 grain at 2600-2700 FPS.

    I realize that any rifle 7mm Mag or above in performance will probably get it done to a certain pre-measured range. I want as a humane kill as possible at the longer ranges. Not one where the beast flails for minutes, while I watch thru glass.

    What do you think will be the minimal foot pounds criteria used to select a load or round for large griz or brownies? I use 1000 FP for deer and think 1500 FP is about right for elk, moose, caribou etc etc. Consequently, I use these figures to gauge how far my shots can be with different weapons.

    I will have the proper gun built for this task. Any input on what caliber, action to use, or barrell length etc etc.

    Thanks in advance, I will execute in Alaska next year during the fall hunt, so please, any serious input will be considered. As for my abilities: I have considerable experience at long range, and will naturally focus my training accordingly.

    Thanks again.

    CG
     
  2. Ian M

    Ian M Well-Known Member

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    I sat in on a discussion of this idea when I was hunting brown bears in Alaska last year. The guides had been considering this exact scenario, and they were pretty much in agreement that the .50BMG was the cartridge that they would consider. There are indeed some flats that offer very long shots at bears, the big consideration is wounding obviously. Nobody wants to get involved with following up a wounded bear in the alders, so the shot placement would be crucial. As for energy, break the scapula or disable the central nervous system and he is yours. These fellows were even considering using a boomer to enable handicapped hunters to experience an Alaskan hunt - possibly from blinds or even a floating shooting platform in a bay.

    They had not heard of this being done but who knows, might be a very viable method of taking a big bear if the shooter is up the challenge.
     

  3. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    Like Ian, I believe the first consideration is precise placement of the round so there's no tracking a wounded bear in the bush. With that in mind the problem for the larger bore cartridges (except the .50) is that it might be difficult to find a good bullet for 750 to 1000 yard shooting. I recently shot my 375 H&H long range and believe it would not be adequate beyond about 700 yards (I was shooting the 260 Accubond) due to accuracy issues. I also have a 416 Rigby and finding bullets is a little problem. Barnes makes a few Triple Shock bullets for the 416 with a BC in the .5 range (advertised). I haven't shot the 416 Rigby long range yet but I believe it'll also be limited by bullets. A 50 BMG might be too much but there are a few wildcat cartridges aruond that are .50 caliber and could use the benefit of the .50 750 A-Max and such. I believe George Gardner has a 50 caliber based on a Rigby case, "50 Battleship" as I recall.
     
  4. ceg1963

    ceg1963 Well-Known Member

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    The .338, pushing the 300 grain MK to 3000 (+) FPS, retains about 2100 FP plus or minus at 1000 yards, I believe? I'd like a larger frontal mass, but energy can't be discounted.

    Dave, your right, the bigger boomer .375 (+) ballistically poop out quickly past 600-700 yards. Ive worked a .375 H&H at 500 yards, and believe it or not, the bullets barely scratched the steel plate. Splattered best described the effect! Not that I am dogging the .375 H&H, it is a real killer, proven all over the world, ballistically out to 400 yards. On the other hand, my souped up .300 WM shooting 200 gr MKs, dug a full 1/2 inch into the steel surface. You could literally feel the impact!

    Ian, the .50 BMG is too much! I've dealt with them quite a few times here in the Army. While they are great hard target interdiction systems, they are a bit much IMHO for people, or any game except at 1600 yards and beyond. Just too much for maneuverbility's sakes in my hunting style.

    Alaska is a mixed bag for sure. I like working the bush better than most, guess I'm nuts, but want the equipment available in case the opportunity presents itself at distance. All the while keeping the weapon reasonable enough for close in stuff too.

    CG
     
  5. ceg1963

    ceg1963 Well-Known Member

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    Ian,

    I read about your encounter with the 10' bear on the recent .416 Rigby thread. Do you have any pics you can email or post here? I'd love to hear more.

    I want to do that same thing to one at 500 - 1000 yards.

    CG
     
  6. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    I've had several of the bigger 338s and with the 300 MatchKing they're pretty hard to beat.

    A 28" barrel and a hot load should get 2900 easily and I believe it'd kill a bear.

    Furthest I've killed anything big with the 338 is 439 (LASER) yards, moose and it died about 15 yards from the site of impact. I'd vote for a big 338 or a custom .50 wildcat.

    Ian bear pic are on here somewhere..
     
  7. dimecovers3

    dimecovers3 Well-Known Member

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    I'm not trying to start anything and I don't mean any disrespect, but how is a Brown bear (one of the most magnificent creature on earth) "dangerous game" when you shoot at it at "... 1000 yards" with a ".50 caliber" bullet? I'm sorry, but think about it, is it not the flushing of quail at your feet (and the difficulty that causes to shooting with a cool head) the sport in birdhunting and by the same token stalking into range of something that can bite back if you screw the pooch is what makes it "dangerous" and therefore sporting and very, very exciting to be up close and personal. I thinks it's remarkable when man and equipment can come together and take down an Elk with one shot at 1000 yards or a varmint at twice the range, but this is God's greatest predator (above us on the food chain) and I'd say that earns him a little more of a handicap on our part in this game. I'm open to other opinions----it's just how I feel now---and I am open to opposing views and even if I'm not persuaded, I still would like to be able to defend the legal rights of others on this issue, but presently, I'd have a hard time doing that with a straitface to an anti-hunter.
    Respectfully,
     
  8. Pete Lincoln

    Pete Lincoln Well-Known Member

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    I was thinking the same, part of the thril of hunting dangerous game is the up close risk factor.
    The risk of wounding a predator at long range is just to high if you ask me.
    I'f it must be done, then i'd want something big. I'm with the .50 cal in some form or other.
    Pete
     
  9. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    DimeCovers3

    The man is asking for information about how to do this.

    It's his decision how to execute the hunt and I'm sure we don't know all the specifics about his time restriction(s) or other limitiations.

    For a very long time I wanted to hunt black bears, my only interested in bagging one, distance mattered not. Now that I have hunted them several times I am becoming interested in other aspects of hunting them. Perhaps this man shares this type interest...to get a brown bear or to allow some other person less agile the opportunity to hunt them.

    This is not an admonishment, just an offer at a different perspective.
     
  10. ceg1963

    ceg1963 Well-Known Member

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    Dimecovers3,

    I agree with most of your reply. Like you, I too believe that in your face contact with the most magestic animal on earth is the ultimate test of one's hunting ability. That's why I wrote in an earlier post that I like working the brush the best.

    [ QUOTE ]
    Alaska is a mixed bag for sure. I like working the bush better than most, guess I'm nuts, but want the equipment available in case the opportunity presents itself at distance. All the while keeping the weapon reasonable enough for close in stuff too.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Having wrote that, I will not sit on a stump and wait for a long shot. But if a longer shot presents itself, why limit the final success/outcome. Most would agree that it is expensive to hunt in areas where dangerous game reside. I think that there is nothing wrong with making the best out of your hard work and the dollars spent.

    [ QUOTE ]
    I thinks it's remarkable when man and equipment can come together and take down an Elk with one shot at 1000 yards or a varmint at twice the range, but this is God's greatest predator (above us on the food chain) and I'd say that earns him a little more of a handicap on our part in this game.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I agree with the first part of your statement. But, I personally feel that the griz or brownie in its territory, while on his turf... has a pretty darn good handicap already! Ask the many folks bitten if they need anymore help!

    No, the game laws protect them as a species just fine. Given the way I will hunt them... on foot, off the beaten path... not on a boat... they already will have the edge. If I catch them in the open, possibly more vunerable... so be it. If they catch me short... well you probably know the outcome! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif

    I think any shot at legally acquired game... is an ethical shot... if made to the highest degree of accuracy and required spent energy on target.

    IMHO I can not separate game species as you have done so easily. The magestic elk you spoke of, shot at 1000 yards is just as much one God's creature as is the bear. And rightfully deserves the same respect in the harvest. As much as you are one of God's creatures so is the lowly prairie dog! All of God's creatures need the same degree of respect.

    I just recently returned from Iraq with a pretty severe head wound. I was shot in Mosul by an Iraqi terrorist armed with a Soviet Draganov, 7.62mm X 54mm Sniper Rifle. Given the nature and angle of my wound, and that I am still able to type this thread, he took me at well over 600 yards. We call it, a "spray and prey" lucky shot in this case. As a sniper I hold no ill regard for the man. However, my team killed him and his buddy the next day. He must have shot at me, and my team over 20 different occassions. He did unfortunately hit two of my NCO's just days before me getting it. Like in the bush, in the killing fields of the middle east, it's nothing personal... just business. If I had caught him in the open at long range, and if I had been properly equipped, I would have taken him earlier. If I had caught him at 5 feet, I still would have taken him... maybe with my 9mm (just to handicap myself, right?). Sorry about that shot. My only regret is that all I had for any serious long range counter-sniper work was a captured 30 year (+) old FN FAL (basicly a Belgium made Semi-Auto .308) with no scope.

    As God's ultimate predater, I give no quater, and ask none in return. I believe the bear feels the same way. Just ask that bear friendly "photographer" fellow (rest his soul) who thought that the bear was his buddy. The bear didn't, and ate both him and his girl. The culprit bear was never killed I believe.

    Sorry for the digression, but I just wanted to drive home the point that all creatures are equally respected by me.

    Yes, I agree that the range tends to take the steam out of the confrontation. Some would argue that I am lucky for that very reason. Unlike the Iraqi shooter, I don't miss when I decide to pull the trigger at any reasonable range, no matter the target.

    My point was, and still is, that if given the opportunity at taking one of God's magestic bears, or other dangerous game for that matter, at longer ranges, what epuipment best fits the bill?

    Dimecovers3, as far as anti-hunters are concerned, I've discovered that they don't and or won't understand, no matter the equipment or technique(s) used. Fortunately, they don't get close enough to me to discuss the issues involved, thanks to God.

    Any input from an experienced shooter would be greatly appreciated.

    v/r

    CG
     
  11. ceg1963

    ceg1963 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Dave,

    Your absolutely right on target. Thanks.

    I've given bear hunting a lot of thought lately. I have never killed one simply due to the fact that I never really wanted to. I also don't see the utility in shooting prairie dogs, except for the advanced practice gained. A crow is another matter all together! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

    Now that I am headed to Alaska for at least the next three years, and probably for the rest of my life, I know that the chances are high that I will get the opportunity... sooner rather than later... to bag one. If I am humping back so far already, I just want the increased capability.

    Besides, like Ian, I don't want anything to be able to steal my "porridge" in camp either!

    CG
     
  12. dimecovers3

    dimecovers3 Well-Known Member

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    ceg1963,

    You are not the average or for that matter even the above average long range shooter. You , I would guess are in a very, very, elite group of marksman that could make this shot on the majority of occasions. But this is a Bear and there are no small coastal browns. My concern like Pete's is shot placement and wounding. It is hard enough to kill one of these bruts at 200 yards with a the proper equipment. I don't have personal experience, but I would imagine shoot placement must be exact and wind, yardage, and even the animal moving during time of flight of bullet could all result in a bear in the bush or worse---a lost bear to die unfound. I have no doubt the Army has taught you the skills needed to do this and I also realize your open to any shot, close or long, but don't want to pass up a shot you could make and the rest of us could only dream of, so I understand where you are coming from given the cost of the trip, I just don't see how you are going to carry the damn thing LOL---seems like a quick brush stopper and an ultra long range rifle with high power scope might leave you slow on the draw at a high noon encounter on one of those little side creeks. I have no creditionals to preach to you on this subject, in fact, I doubt anybody on this board could answer your questions better than you yourself. I think the heart of the matter is the hunting of the great bears (blacks excluded) and Mt. Lions has always bothered me. Seems the higher predators should give way to same. I know it sounds gooffy, but it's more a matter of professional courtesy. It's just not for me. I was the first first person on this board to congradulate our moderator on his kill featured in NRA and I can enjoy, support, and protect the rights of others to do it, even if it's not my cup of tea. I hope your wounds heal and I thank you for your service from the bottom of my heart and I hope you do get a whopper in Alaska ( I was up there last year myself) and I hope you get the exact shot you will remember for a lifetime be it ten yards or 1000.

    Best Wishes
     
  13. ceg1963

    ceg1963 Well-Known Member

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    Dimecovers3,

    Thanks from the bottom of my heart. Thanks mostly for supporting our great Nation which has kept me gainfully employed... doing what I love... for so long.

    Your right, what I need is a rifle that is truely accurate and stable enough to execute the appropriate amount of energy at longer ranges, while being handi enough for the in your face stuff so often found in good bear country.

    I also want the hunt up close and personal. I just want the ability to do it out there, if needed.

    I want .338 WM performance at 200 yards out to 1000 yards is all. Once I decide on caliber and action, I will probably keep the barrel contour at .700" diameter and under 28". Any input is appreciated and needed.

    A side note: After much research my gunsmith will be Chris Mathews. Chris question? Did Mr. Carl Carcaba send you his .30-378 Weatherby, for a rebarrel to .338-378 with a new A-5 stock? I told him that you are one of the good ones on this site.

    v/r

    CG
     
  14. chris matthews

    chris matthews Well-Known Member

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    Charles,
    I sent you an email, however I will respond here also.
    I have Carl's rifle as we speak.
    I am proud you have chosen me as your smith...it's the least I can do to build you the best rifle possible after what you have done for me and the rest of this country. Thank you.

    Now as far as my two cents worth on this subject. While I see Dimecovers3 point and respect his choice. I feel that it is slightly skewed...."the great bears- excluding the black bear" how is that fair? A black will eat you twice as fast a grizz...most people underestimate them way too much.
    Are we really the top predator? Sorry I think God and Ma Nature are....
    In my experience, animals (and people) react poorly to bullets. Put the bullet where it belongs at any distance and you have the recipe for a clean kill.