400gr X 416 Remington Mag NOT Enough For GRIZZ?


Active Member
Dec 21, 2003
This is my first "NEW TOPIC" post on this forum and I wanted it to be a good one that might help someone... This just happened in Alaska, so it is kinda' timely. Rifle in question is supposed to be a re-barrelled SAKO - pushfeed style instead of controlled feed. More About ALASKA Hunting



Hunting guide mauled by wounded brown bear
ATTACK: Scott Newman attributes incident to two cardinal errors.
Anchorage Daily News
(Published: April 28, 2004)

Scott Newman, a hunting guide from Petersburg, recovers in the Sitka Community Hospital on Tuesday.

Scott Newman of Petersburg says he's naturally a calm person. He proved it Monday evening as a wounded brown bear on Admiralty Island crunched the bones of his left foot and moved up to chew on his leg while Newman methodically tried to free a jam in his rifle.

By the time the bear chomped on his inner thigh, Newman let go of the rifle and his hope for another shot and tried pushing the animal away with his hands. The bear then began cracking the bones of his right hand and forearm.

Newman, a 39-year-old hunting and fishing guide, told the story of his mauling Tuesday by telephone from his bed at Sitka Community Hospital. He was bandaged and in splints. Doctors had yet to close his puncture wounds, so as to let them drain. He was in a lot of pain, he said.

Nevertheless, he spoke matter-of-factly, going over details with precision, and blaming himself for two mistakes, neither of them very rare on guided hunts.

Newman has been guiding for 17 years, 12 of them as proprietor of his own business. He is called a "superb guide" on the Web site of Field & Stream magazine.

Monday was the last day of a 10-day bear hunt in the vicinity of Pybus Bay in the southeast corner of Admiralty, about 75 miles south of Juneau. His client was a textile businessman from Mexico City. Others on the trip included the client's wife; Newman's 15-year-old nephew, Levi Newman, who worked as his assistant guide; and a cook.

"We saw only 10 bears for the whole trip," Newman said. That included a decent-sized bear on the fifth day, which they let go. On Monday, from Newman's skiff on Little Pybus Bay, they spotted a boar along the beach of the small peninsula that separates the smaller bay from the bigger one.

"I parked the skiff downwind of the bear and we did our final stalk on foot," Newman said. The bear busied itself behind a bunch of driftwood logs. They'd see a leg, then its head. It seemed to back away.

Newman next made the first of his mistakes, he said: He left the side of his hunter and crawled toward the water for a better look. When the bear started climbing over the logs, the client became excited and fired two or three rounds.

"I wasn't able to whisper, 'Wait 'til he turns his side,'" Newman said. He now fired several rounds of his own, big 400-grain bullets from a .416 Remington Magnum.

"I think I got a frontal shot," he said. "I thought I really hit him hard. I was pretty confident he'd be dead" in the brush where the animal ran.

Now came what Newman considers his second mistake. It was 7 p.m. and would be dark in two hours. He didn't want to wait until morning to skin the bear, not with another hunt coming up in a few days. He decided then to follow it, to ensure it was dead and to skin the carcass while they had light.

Newman found a large pool of blood where the bear had been hit and a spoor leading away from the beach into the brush.

He zig-zagged across the trail, circling quietly. It was clear the bear was bleeding from both sides. Newman guessed it had been hit as many as half-a-dozen times.

"I was fairly concerned because he'd gone quite a ways. There was dark blood. I knew he was hurt, but I didn't think he was mortally wounded, so I probably had a live animal on my hands."

Newman was looking at the ground when he heard a twig break. He slipped the safety off and heard a low roar.

"He was ticked off," he said. "He appeared instantaneously. He looked like a freight train coming at me. I knew I had to make the shot really count. I took an extra split second, leaned into it and torched it off. I was fairly certain I hit him in the chest."

He worked the bolt to chamber a second round but "short-stroked it," jamming the rifle. "****," he said as the bear barrelled forward, knocking him down.

"Now I'm on my back kicking this bear in the head, trying to get him off me. He's biting my left foot, giving me a compound fracture, crunching the bones in my left leg. I'm trying to get my gun to work."

Newman feared that a bad tear in his thigh could sever the femoral artery, so when the bear bit him there, he switched tactics.

After the boar chomped his hands, however, it broke off suddenly, turned to the side, turned back as if still interested in Newman, but finally walked away.

"When he dropped down, he appeared very sick," Newman said. He thinks the bear, found dead later just yards from that spot, was then only moments from dying.

"It was that frontal shot at 10 feet," Newman said. "It was a mortal shot, and he had just another 30 seconds to live, and in the meantime he chewed on me very good."

As soon as the bear turned away, Newman grabbed his rifle and ran 25 yards away -- on adrenalin, he said.

"I sat down and started yelling for help, then realized I had my hand-held (radio) and called the Coast Guard. ... 'I need a helicopter now,' " he told them, worried still about the femoral artery.

The artery was intact, although Newman did lose a lot of blood. But he never lost consciousness.

"I had a definite sense of calmness. I was very calm about the whole thing. I don't know where it came from. That's just the way I am. I was never freaked out about it. I just knew what I had to do to get out of that situation."

Levi Newman and a man from a nearby lodge helped stabilize him until he was evacuated by Coast Guard helicopter 90 minutes after the mauling.

Levi also worked to skin the bear and get the hide and the others back to Petersburg on Tuesday evening.

The Associated Press
ADMIRALTY ISLAND, Alaska — A hunting guide on a 10-day trip with a client was attacked by a bear near Pybus Bay on Admiralty Island in southeast Alaska.

Scott D. Newman, 39, of Petersburg was picked up from the island by a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter and taken to Sitka for treatment of multiple broken bones, Alaska state troopers said.

Newman, a licensed guide, told troopers he and his client were on the last day of their trip Monday when they spotted the bear, which they stalked to until they could get a good shot.

The client fired at the bear twice, and hit it, and Newman also fired at the bear.

The bear ran into some brush, and Newman followed. The bear turned and charged, troopers said, and Newman fired again.

The bear bit Newman on the legs and arms and then turned away and lay down, giving Newman a chance to pull out his radio and call for the Coast Guard for help.
Is that the lesson you get from this event?

‘A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring;
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain;
And drinking largely sobers us again.’

Here's another one - a couple were attacked after the husband tried to kill a Grizz...

Injured grizzly attacks hunter
HARROWING: Woman kills bear at close range as it attacked her husband.

By Peter Porco
Anchorage Daily News

(Published: September 14, 2002)
In 35 years of hunting, Larry J. Miller of Wasilla has seen 100 bear kills, he said, including 10 of his own. But he'd never before seen the fight in a wounded bear like the grizzly his wife killed early this week as it was attacking him.

The day before, Miller shot the bear twice from 200 yards, ripping out flesh and shattering bones but apparently leaving the bear strong enough to walk away bleeding puddles in the alders of a mountainside near the Denali Highway.

The bear did not die until the following day as they searched for the animal, and not until Larry's 50-year-old wife, Brinda Miller, shot it three more times in the chest at close range with a .338-caliber rifle while it tangled with her husband.

Miller didn't know how the animal was able to stand and keep charging him.

While skinning it afterward, the couple saw that "the bear's heart wasn't even there," he said. "The part that holds your shoulders together, it was just demolished."

Larry Miller's right calf was punctured a few times by the bear's teeth, but he suffered no other injuries. His wife was unhurt.

"There ain't a man alive that done what she done," he said about his wife, a 100-pound woman he calls his "hunting buddy."

Miller, who'll be 53 later this month, and his wife and their dog were after caribou near Butte Lake, a few miles south of Mile 40 on the Denali Highway. On Monday, after riding six-wheel off-road vehicles to a spot where they'd seen numerous caribou, Miller shot a big one, he said.

They dressed the animal and took it a quarter-mile to a small unnamed lake on the mountain. It was about 4 p.m., and Miller looked down and saw the grizzly eating berries in an open patch.

"My wife says, 'You gonna shoot it?' 'I don't know,' " he said. "We spent an hour looking at it."

The winds were strong, however, and Miller feared the bear would soon catch their scent, so he decided to shoot it, he said. In telling the story, he always referred to the bear as a "him," knowing, as they found out later, it was a sow.

"I popped him, hit him right above his shoulders," he said. The bear ran in a panicked circle. Miller fired again. He would learn later his second shot hit it in the leg. The bear disappeared in the alders, and the Millers waited a spell before heading down.

In the berry patch, they found "meat the size of a tennis ball, and whole pieces of bone I shot out of him," said Miller.

"You ain't never seen so much blood in your life," Miller said. "I said, 'He's got to be dead."'

The blood trail ended, however, near a creek coming down from the lake.

"Man, this ain't good," Miller remembered thinking. "We'll come back in the morning and he'll be dead, and we'll take care of him then."

They rode eight miles to camp near the highway and hung the caribou meat. Next morning, they were back above the alders. Looking down to where the bear's trail ran out, they saw a small flock of ravens.

"He's dead right there," Miller said. "Not a problem."

They shed rain gear, coveralls and other heavy clothing and headed down into the alders. For 40 minutes, they zigzagged but without a sign of the grizzly. "Well, I've had enough," he said. "We need to get out of here. Something ain't right."

They returned to where Miller first shot it and spent an hour searching through the alders. Their dog, a Russian bear dog, said Miller, was ahead of them and now came tearing back, followed by the sow that Miller says he didn't really see clearly until it was on top of him.

"The noise it made, like nothing you've ever heard -- snapping, snapping, snapping. This happened in two seconds. He knew who I was. He could smell my guns or the caribou meat on me, something."

The bear hit him and he fell back and started kicking as the grizzly tried to bite his face and neck, he said. He struggled to take the safety off of his rifle, a powerful .458. The bear was biting him across his calf.

He yelled for his wife to shoot. The final act in the two-day drama occurred as man, woman and bear struggled in a tight cluster no farther from each other than 5 feet, Miller said.

"She stuck the gun over my face and fired." The stunned bear hung back, breathing froth and spurting blood. "There was this horrible noise out of his throat," Miller said.

"The next time he grabbed me between the ankle and calf and picked me up and shook me like I was a half-a-pound kid."

Miller was only a few feet from the bear's chest and his wife was afraid she'd hit him, but she fired again.

"She's not even aiming," he said. "She's just pointing like you point a stick at the big part of his body. Every time she pulled the trigger, he'd put me down."

The third hit finished the grizzly but not before it stood swaying and finally fell forward.

Brinda Miller started to cry.

"I told her, 'You did good, you did good,' " he said...
Dark blood is indicative of a non heart or lung shot. Could be liver - whatever it's not a great shot even on a deer let alone a bear

Pieces of meat and bone prove nothing.

Non fatal wounds are non fatal wounds after a night has passed.

Non CNS shots on animals don't stop (at least not with enough regularity to be depended upon)animals quickly. If the animal needs to be killed quickly don't be surprised if it doesn't work

Once the first shot has hit the wrong place things go downhill instantly. Subsequent shots have lesser effect because of adrenalin in the animal making it stronger and adrenaline in the hunter making them less accurate.

Short stroking will cause problems in a CRF too.
The 375 H&H with the 270 Barnes will stop a grizzly. A 416 with a 400 Barnes will definitely stop the Grizzly.

Poor shot placement is poor shot placement.
Stupid Mistakes are stupid Mistakes.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Newman next made the first of his mistakes, he said: He left the side of his hunter and crawled toward the water for a better look. When the bear started climbing over the logs, the client became excited and fired two or three rounds.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

He did not properly instruct his clients on when or where to shoot.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Now came what Newman considers his second mistake. It was 7 p.m. and would be dark in two hours. He didn't want to wait until morning to skin the bear, not with another hunt coming up in a few days. He decided then to follow it, to ensure it was dead and to skin the carcass while they had light.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

You've got to be kidding me! He is impatient and goes after an animal that he is not even sure of where it has been hit.

In the other story, the guy shot an animal from 200 yards away when it was adjecent to the brush. The he goes looking for it without certainty of a mortal wound.

I didn't hear anything in either story of well planned and well placed shots NOT dropping animals. Also, there was never a mention in either story of a sidearm or backup weapon. It seems that a holstered pistol would have improved both of those situations.
A big gun only gives you a little room for error. Put the bullet where it needs to go and you win, even with a small gun. With quick, unplanned shots, even the biggest gun will get you into trouble. All this talk about getting the biggest gun you can find is funny. A 30 cal that you shoot well is much better than a 375 or 416 you got from a friend and shot a few times before the hunt.
There's a thread over at AR on this. The Guide did instruct the client, he didn't completely listen though. He took the client back to the boat then went to finish the BB himself.

The calm he felt - T'was "shock". Been in shock three different times myself. It's like a drug I guess, the intense trauma would probably kill you but you feel like nothing is wrong, too calm really, which is the dangerous part if you believe it.

The importance on practice for something like this is impressed on me more every year. I most definitely have not practiced off hand fast shooting at small moving targets to even know how I'd fair. In all truth, I doubt I'm half as prepared as I should be. I think some milk jugs placed progressively closer and some fast shooting will be fun practice, well needed too.

The best way I can think to pratice this would be with a shot gun on a sporting clays course, its amazing how much shooting 50-100 clay birds a week will improve reflexes.
The most important first step in using a BGR is to ensure it fits correctly and is comfortable under recoil.
Heavy recoiling rifles also require a much [more than normal] more aggresive grip by both hands and body weight over front foot.
That is a forward "lean" in order to maintain control over fast repeat shots otherwise we are thrown off balance onto the back foot with rifle elevating to the sky.
Practicing sportings clays is excellent as this encourages the natural traverse with the body rather than using the arms to track left or right. It will also help with the balance referred to above.
Apart from actual practice as on the jugs Brent mentioned [excellent as there is instant visual gratification] dry fire will help enormously.A tip for dry fire - practice every movement slowly! This will increase your speed when it is really needed. You will programme your subconsious to perform best if you have practiced smooth economical movement slowly and perfectly - e.g. gun mount[critical to a fast accurate shot] and tracking multipule targets.
I have had some experience on these matters as I have owned and shot 375 H&H; 416 Rigby; 500/465 H&H; 500 Jefferys here in Australia along with 6 trips to Africa.
For many years I was IPSC Mastergrade as well which taught me a great deal about speed and controllability. MY .02. APB.
Dear John & Harv,
A 30-06 is enough gun to kill even a large Grizz, but there's a BIG difference between a killing caliber and a STOPPING GUN CALIBER.

To stop a charge from Dangerous Game at close range, you must be able to hammer the beast into the ground. FEW rifles and slugs are capable of doing this. For many years, BORE RIFLES in 10bore were the GUN of choice. They could throw a huge 2oz hardened ball or a 3oz conical bullet into a dangerous animal at close range and knock them down. High speed bullets just can't do this alone - there's gotta' be bore or diameter, mass and momentum at work here. It's one of the reasons James Gates and the team over at Dixie Slugs came out with the Terminator Slug - it's a huge 745gr hard cast (bullet alloy) monster with enough velocity and momentum to rake a big animal from end to end at close range. The power and recoil is just on the borderline of what most shooters can control and manage good followup shots. There's more updated information on the website at Dixie Slugs. Hunters and people in the Outdoors can use a fairly low cost, strong shotgun action to shoot these loads and expect a lot of protection from dangerous game animals at close range. EXPANSION? The Dixie Terminator has not been tested on any animals large enough to evaluate expansion, but in WET SAND, it's over an inch - figure 26mm - OVER AN INCH! 1¾ OUNCES!! At point blank range, what's your calculation of knockout - knockdown power of this slug?


Just my opinion, but a strong, quick 12ga shotgun with these slugs might have given a different outcome...


Gowge, I fully understand stopping power vs killing power. What I'm syaing is that you are looking at data from over 100 years ago.

Bullets today are substantially better.

A 416 Weatherby with a 400 grain X-bullet that retains all its weight is plenty of stopping power for a grizz. Over 6400 ft/lbs or energy? It retains almost all its weight?


Have you ever hunted with a barnes bullet?

In both the stories you mentioned, problems were encountered by mistakes not being undergunned.

Should we all use rifles so powerful that problems are caused BY excessive recoil?

[ 05-02-2004: Message edited by: John M. ]
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