338 Win Mag Cow Elk Bullet?

skipglo

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LRH Team Member
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Jan 23, 2015
Messages
991
Location
Alberta
Well, I traded the 338 off and sold the .270! I had been drooling over a CA Mesa in 300WM for two years. I haven't used a 300WM in many years, but have killed a solid 2 dozen nice animals with it, like the round a lot. When it all got down to the wire ( and sitting around here healing up from this new hip I just got!) I decided that "make do, won't do anymore"! I ordered the Mesa a few days ago and I will shoot the 150 TTSX as fast as I can get it to! ha Weatherproof, very handy, flat shooting ( I don't shoot at unwounded game past 375yds , just a personal whammy thing) and nice to look at. So thanks for all the advice guys, I still appreciate all the knowledge and stories!
Good choice to sum this all up! Never did like 338 wm.
 

RevJim

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Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
612
Location
Sandy, UT
I hear you Muley- I have friends who hunt cow or bull with 6mm Remington, 243W, 308, 270, 25-06 etc. I myself like something "a bit out of the ordinary" just because and like to experiment. I bet the majority of the guesstimated cows that weigh "600 pounds" are really about 400, maybe 500. A big cow (like bears they tell me) just "looks big", ha. I would say my average weight ( only killed 3 cows out here) would be about 350 pounds ( literally 1 big cow, 1 medium cow and 1 big calf) . Nice size, but no monsters, but all ate swell! Even the bulls I've seen out here are usually younger bulls, but I don't hunt bulls anymore, just can't get in there where they are at and the "hayfield bulls" are too much money, ha. Years ago I found I enjoyed seeing how my handloads worked via necropsy, so horns were just coincidental to me.
 

muley guy

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Apr 19, 2012
Messages
29
Location
Billings Montana
I know what you mean Rev. There is one camp of light fast bullet guys and another camp of slow heavy bullet guys. Obviously there isn't a clear demarcation but I tend to be more of the slow heavy bullet guy. I have what some consider "elk rifles" in .270, .280, 7mm mag, 30-06, 30-06AI, .300wm, .325wsm, 8mm mag, .338 wm, and .375 H&H. For me personally, my elk rifles start with the .300wm and go bigger. Just personal preference. My smaller caliber rifles are more of my deer rifles, but with that said, for the last three years in a row I ended up shooting my mule deer buck when I was out hunting for antelope and consequently had my antelope rifle which is a .257 Wthby shooting a handloaded 117 gr. pill. It tipped over the deer okay but luckily I wasn't shooting real far or I would have passed on the shot (all of them were under 300 yards).
 

RevJim

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Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
612
Location
Sandy, UT
I like the 257WM too. I used a couple different rifles on Texas Exotics. First one was a converted/rechambered Mod 700 Classic in 25-06. It shot the Nosler 115PT super well. Made my first ever long shot for me ( 375) on a nice old Blackbuck. I also popped a 35" Black Hawaiian. A few years later I had a custom Mark X and I had loaded it with the 100TSX. Another but bigger Black Hawaiian. The 25 cals are really popular down in Texas.
I think "most" guys buy a "deer rifle" and use it on elk only as a one time or rare opportunity. I have always paid attention to what "elk hunters" use and the ones I've seen also start around the 300 mags. Good choices. I've used the 338WM and the 375 H&H on cow elk too. I guess I like the idea of "shooting through a lot of elk", at most any angle. Really, I think hunting South Africa/Namibia "ruined me" for waiting for the perfect broadside shot, ha.
 

Doginab

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Joined
Mar 28, 2012
Messages
25
Most people kill cows with smaller calibers than a 338WM here in Utah (at least the ones I've talked to) and usually to save meat. I want to know what you 338 Mag guys have used on elk; light/fast or heavy/slow or medium/fast/slow ( ha) that did not bloodshot a lot of meat? The last elk I killed was with the old Barnes 185 XLC going fast from a 338WM. It was perfection. I like how the newer TSX & TTSX shoot, but never used one on game. I won't be shooting past 300yds ( chip shot for most of you LR hunters!) but will be picking one out of a herd I'm sure. Love that elk meat! I want to hear from you guys! Here is my choices I have on hand: 160TTSX/185TSX/225TTSX, 180NAB/200NBT/200NAB/210PT/250PT/250NAB. I will even tually end up playing with them all, I like to work both ends against the middle in load workup. I have loads ready to try with the 160TTSX , the 200NBT and the 250 NAB.
210 Barnes TSX !
 

RevJim

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Dec 25, 2014
Messages
612
Location
Sandy, UT
I used the older Barnes 210 XBT in a 340W in South Africa and Namibia. Awesome bullet. I also used the odl 185 XLC in a 338WM on a big cow elk. Perfection. Just don't have a 338WM anymore, ha. Thanks pard! :)
 

memtb

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Dec 30, 2013
Messages
1,208
Location
Winchester, Wy.
Jim, I thought that you where just getting the .338 where you wanted it! Why did you let it go? Catch and Release? :Dmemtb
 

RevJim

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Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
612
Location
Sandy, UT
Hey Mem- yeah, I got to thinking how I just didn't want to take either it or its identical one in .270 out into the weather. Well, the 338WM seemed like a bit too much at this stage of my hunting life, really. Plus it was the fact they both had just gorgeous bluing/wood and I didn't want to swap out a synthetic stock or have either cerakoted. Then, I thought about that Mesa I had handled awhile back...love at first handling, ha. I felt I could cover everything I'll ever hunt again with the 300WM and this is a quality, semi-custom all weather rifle. I am happy big time. If I were going back to Africa, or wanted to use a lot of oil/wax and watch then real close, I'd of kept them both. I am also getting into the mindset of using and making memories with just one rifle as my opportunities are thinning out now, ha. They were both wonderful rifles, but I had more rifle assets than money, so sold what I had to buy/set up myself in the 300WM. I got the Mesa, a new Vortex 1.5x8, dies (had some 20 yrs ago, gave them to a friend with a 300wm.) Barnes 150TTSX, Hornady 150SST, Nosler 150PT and a 170pcs new brass! Soon as I get "released: by the Hip doc on Sept 9 I'll start heading tot he range! :)
 

Doginab

Active Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2012
Messages
25
Most people kill cows with smaller calibers than a 338WM here in Utah (at least the ones I've talked to) and usually to save meat. I want to know what you 338 Mag guys have used on elk; light/fast or heavy/slow or medium/fast/slow ( ha) that did not bloodshot a lot of meat? The last elk I killed was with the old Barnes 185 XLC going fast from a 338WM. It was perfection. I like how the newer TSX & TTSX shoot, but never used one on game. I won't be shooting past 300yds ( chip shot for most of you LR hunters!) but will be picking one out of a herd I'm sure. Love that elk meat! I want to hear from you guys! Here is my choices I have on hand: 160TTSX/185TSX/225TTSX, 180NAB/200NBT/200NAB/210PT/250PT/250NAB. I will even tually end up playing with them all, I like to work both ends against the middle in load workup. I have loads ready to try with the 160TTSX , the 200NBT and the 250 NAB.
Most people kill cows with smaller calibers than a 338WM here in Utah (at least the ones I've talked to) and usually to save meat. I want to know what you 338 Mag guys have used on elk; light/fast or heavy/slow or medium/fast/slow ( ha) that did not bloodshot a lot of meat? The last elk I killed was with the old Barnes 185 XLC going fast from a 338WM. It was perfection. I like how the newer TSX & TTSX shoot, but never used one on game. I won't be shooting past 300yds ( chip shot for most of you LR hunters!) but will be picking one out of a herd I'm sure. Love that elk meat! I want to hear from you guys! Here is my choices I have on hand: 160TTSX/185TSX/225TTSX, 180NAB/200NBT/200NAB/210PT/250PT/250NAB. I will even tually end up playing with them all, I like to work both ends against the middle in load workup. I have loads ready to try with the 160TTSX , the 200NBT and the 250 NAB.
210 TSX
 

D.Camilleri

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Joined
Jun 1, 2004
Messages
879
Location
Worland, Wyoming
I grew up watching my dad flatten deer with a 338 win mag and 210 gr partitions. The reason he bought the 338 was do to loosing a big muley buck hit behind the shoulder with a 180 gr bullet from a 30-06. He found the deer a day later and my uncle mounted it for him. Dad bought the 338 win mag in 1958 and still has it today and I had it re-barreled for him a few years back. I started hunting with a 30-06 at 12 years of age, at 19 I bought a 7mm mag and at 30 I bought a 338 win mag. All calibers kill, some kill better. On big animals I am a huge advocate of 30 caliber and up. Everyone like to think they will only make ethical shots, and some try hard, but hunting is about being human and things happen. The bad shots I have made in my life stay with me, as do the misses, but the DRT's stand out. I started shooting a 338 rum in 2001 and now I have two. I used to like light bullets very fast. I shot 210 gr Barnes XLC for a few years and made some great kills. No complaints, the bullet was screaming at 3400 fps. Later I changed to 225 accubonds and made a lot of great kills out to 575 yards on bull elk. I pushed the 225's to 3300 fps. Since then I have gone heavy. I really like 300 gr Berger otm's, driven at 2830 they flat hammer elk! Right now I am trying some 285 Hornady ELDM's driven at 2940 and they too are a super hammer, very similar to the Berger but with a slightly better BC and I am able to run them faster for a down range advantage over the Berger. I have kills on elk out to 850 with the Berger 300 otm and no tracking required. I hunt where there are lots of hump back bears and I have to admit I was unsure about the penetration ability of a Berger at point blank on a self defense shot, so I tried some 300 gr accubonds year before last and I can honestly say that they penetrate better, but don't necessarily kill better. The fragmenting bullets are devastating. So the debate can go on around the campfire, I will always choose a bigger caliber over the smaller caliber for killing ability especially on large game. I would have no problem with another 338 win mag in my safe, and no issue at all as a bear stopper or elk thumper. But since this is a long range site, run the ballistics on a 338 285 gr bullet with an .829 bc being launched at 2940 and compare the numbers to the rest of your favorite calibers. Hopefully I have another 180+ muley on the ground next week to report on the terminal effects of the 285 ELDM.

As far as the 300 win mag, a great cartridge that can kill anything a person needs to drop, but for me, I would be shooting 180 gr + bullets, preferably 190 gr Berger or 215 Berger or 200 gr accubond.
 
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