Favorite "light" rifle.??

Jake in NC

Well-Known Member
Oct 25, 2002
.. I know "light" is a relative term.. Especially in this joint.!
What I'm talking about is a "carry weight" or "walking" type utilitarian rifle for general purpose hunting from groundhogs to whitetails.. What configuration and why.? With first shot, cold barrel shot placement being a very high priority.. Which scope sits on this rig.? TIA.. d:^) JiNC

I have found that this configuration works well for me.

It would work well from ground hogs to whitetails. I have a Rem 700 stainless SA in 308 w/24" (would rather have 26") special R5 bbl. A McMillan M40A1 stock in desert cammo has been added, a Leupold mk 4 10x M1 on 20 MOA tapered bases is used. It has a harris bipod "Swivel" series on it as well. It weighs 13.5# complete. This is my personal favorite configuration for a "light weight" rifle. I have carried this rifle on several sheep hunts. It is my "go to" rifle as it has never let me down on a hunt. This rifle also has made first round hits at 800 yards w/a cold barrel. Cold meaning I took it out and tested it. Last year I left it in my truck over a cold night (-5 F.) then took it out in the field and fired one bullet, checked the target and then fired the rest of the group. Bullet #1 went right into the group! A semi heavy barrel to a heavy barrel in something like a 308 using medium loads vs a 300 mag is a good 1st cold shot set up. In Alaska that can be a major bonus on a LR sheep hunt.

Because this works so well for me is "why" I use it. This may not work for every one.

I would like to try the Christiensen carbon bbls for "light weight" cold bore shooting.


P.S. This is the same rifle I used to take a dall ram w/1 cold bore shot at 763 yards (my 1st LR trophy). A NF 5.5-22x scope was used on that hunt though. Every thing else has been the mk4 to take some weight off. It just "matches" the rifle better.

[ 12-27-2003: Message edited by: meichele ]
Jake, if your looking for a light weight gun I have a win model 70 compact in 308. I had the action bedded and the trigger lightend to 2 1/2 lbs. I have a lupy tactical in 3x9 the gun is just over 6 lbs thats light. I am still working on loads for best groups. I'm at just 1moa at 100 yards hoping to lower that. But for a penical 20" barrle that might be what I get? I still have yet to shoot long range with her but I'll let ya know how she does thou.
Thank you WyoWhisper,

I will take that as a complement.

Your old 300 WSM M40 clone is just the right kind of rifle for what I like to do.

I am going to have a 300 WSM put together with the M40 stock and a 28" bbl #7 or #8 straight taper for the extra long shots. Probly a 12 or 11 twist. These kind of rifles to me are not "heavy" they are just right. 17-20 pounds is a heavy rifle. I like these kinds of set ups because they work.

P.S. Nice deer in the yard you have there. How hard is it for a guy to find mule deer hunting opprotunities in Wyoming? (no secret spots or anything) just a nice 25-30" 4x4.

The M40 clone weighed 11 lbs total w/bi-pod.

you've got the right idea...

Not real had to find a 25" buck.. alot of public access.. all you need to do is draw a tag.... you have about a 70% chance...

The real big buck are in the Pinedale, Afton area but real hard to get a tag there....
He did state light rifle, so that means less than 7.5lbs to me....

My light rifle is a stock Rem 700LA DM 280 Mountain rifle...Very Very Light...Not the most accurate rifle in the world just barely shoots 1MOA.

Fouls worse than any gun I have every owned...Shoot 10rds and clean for hours.

But if there is a long hike involved and I am shooting within 300yds...it the perfect weapon for me.

I have been toying with the idea of using the action for a project....

You should consider the Rem Mountain rifles, Now they are made by the Rem Custom shop and shoot very good.
I'll second X_RING01 on the REM. customshop rifles I've have a 300SAUM from them .25-.50 shooter all day long, rifle weight's 7.25lb. with glass, but it will kick the fillings out of your month.
Picked up a Tikka T3 in 300wsm at 6.6lbs before scopeing, it nice to carry and shoots very well. A very nice carry gun and shoots 2inch groups at 300yds.Outlaw
my favorate light weight rifle is rem. 7600 260 caliber 2.5 to 8 power leupold in leupold mounts shooting 129 grain hornady s.p. rem. 9.5 primer 46.5 grains rel. 22 this load shoots 3/4 inch group all day long this is my favorate rifle for north carolina hunting
Jake: I had a Weaterby Ultra lightweight in 308. It recoil was more than my 30-378.
I sold it and now have a Rem 700 Titanium in .270. One sweet rifle. My old 700 .270 Mtn. rifle which my son now has regularly would pop ground hogs at 400 yrds. I have yet to try the 700 Titanium on live game but am extremely happy with groups. BTW I am in WNC.................................OTTO
Ok here's one nice light packing fuzzel
Few years back I picked up a near New M70 post64 Featherweight rifle in 30-06. It was a back up to my .338 Win Mag on a Montana Elk hunt. The .338 did not get to speak in anger so the Light weight was pulled out to scamper about for Mule Deer. I hadn't fussed much with the 06 loads, a few sighters to center scope and then loaded 2 boxes of 180 Noslers over max pack of 4064. Ended up using just one round to harvest my Muley Buck (~270 yds) thus blooding the new rifle. The fun part came when back at home I presented the new (almost) M70 FW 30-06 to my son including the two boxes of 39 remaining hunting fodder. Told him this one works go getum rjb
I can see where some guys get the idea that 11 pounds is light compared to the 14-16 pounds that most tactical rigs end up at. But there is life below eight pounds

First, many out of the box factor rifles can perform, even tho they are not trued, squared, tickled etc. Most just need a trigger job and some decent stock bolts, maybe a skim-bedding job. I have shot factory Sako 75's at 700 yards that would have killed deer easily as far as the groups they were shooting.

As for customs, bottom line is that Lilja, Hart, Mike Rock etc.can turn down barrels that still shoot amazingly well - they just heat up faster and like to wobble more in the wind. Also McMillan makes some wonderful stocks other than the A-Series. Same with H-S, some of their lightweight stocks fit very nicely.
George Gardner is playing with a featherweight carbon wrapped Rock barrel that we might someday accept as our standard
, and wonder why we used to use such heavy tubes with the silly flutes.
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