How many rounds per rifle per season?

Lenny Foffa

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Joined
Mar 6, 2017
Messages
305
6 to 7 weeks before the deer hunt, shoot 18 to 20 rounds each week from the 270 Win. Since I might have 25 to 30 rounds made in matched cases , I then come home and re load the ones I shot . Then from that batch ,8 to 10 rounds come with me on the hunt !
 

boonermike

Member
Joined
Feb 5, 2021
Messages
6
Location
Idaho
I generally buy a new rifle every other year so typically there is 250 rounds expended for load development. For my elk/deer hunting rifle I keep a three years supply on hand (300 rds) loaded in the safe. That’s a grand total of 350 rounds generally shot each year.
 

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vancewalker007

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Joined
Mar 30, 2013
Messages
485
I'm finishing final loads for a couple of hunting rifles and was curious once load development is complete, how many rounds folks typically load for a hunting season? Not talking any type of competition shooting just how many rounds you'll typically load for a rifle for a upcoming individual hunt or hunting season. I've been in probably the not so good habit of loading 30-40 rounds a month or so before the hunt to revalidate velocity and drops, confirm zero and have 20 or so left for the hunt.

Would I be better served to load 50-100 and be done with it for a couple three seasons?
I'll usually load at least 50 maybe 75 depending on how much practice is needed. When I share a rifle between more than one person then I'll load more. For example my daughter and I shared my 6.5 PRC last year so I loaded 80. I like to have at least 25-30 for the actual hunt.
 

Quintus

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Joined
Apr 15, 2013
Messages
857
I will typically load as I go. I like to use new brands, weights, styles of bullets every year so I don't want a bunch of loaded ammo left for most rifles after the last season closes. I try to have 8 rifles hunt ready for the year. I will typically have 30 rounds per rifle per practice session (after development is done). I won't always shoot them all each session, but the balance carries over until that gun is going on a hunt. When I take a rifle on a hunt I will have 30 rounds with. When I borrow a gun out I will send it with 15 rounds (my in-laws have been known to lose small items like bullet cases). I do try and keep 1000 rounds loaded for the .223s and 22-250s and 400 varmint loads for the 243 as sometimes I get short notice that my friends in SD are getting ready to poison the P-Dogs. I do try and keep at least 200 but ideally 500 of my favorite hunting bullets as components so I can load as I need. I started that policy after the Obama shortage and am now happy I did. The last boxes of 165 Sciroccos I bought were $48. They are almost $90 listed at Midway and out of stock no back-order.
 

longgun505

Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2020
Messages
22
Location
kalispell, MT
I'm finishing final loads for a couple of hunting rifles and was curious once load development is complete, how many rounds folks typically load for a hunting season? Not talking any type of competition shooting just how many rounds you'll typically load for a rifle for a upcoming individual hunt or hunting season. I've been in probably the not so good habit of loading 30-40 rounds a month or so before the hunt to revalidate velocity and drops, confirm zero and have 20 or so left for the hunt.

Would I be better served to load 50-100 and be done with it for a couple three seasons?
LW,
I load exclusively everything we hunt with. It simply provides optimum accuracy for each gun. We create our own BDC’s with hockey stick grip tape and a pencil. I load 100 rounds initially for each rifle after load work up and dope verification. Each rifle has a data book with complete load and rifle specs. *Eliminate every variable you can control, and when something goes wrong identifying the issue becomes much easier.
Each subsequent 100 round lot is measured for chamber conditions/length prior to finishing the lot. If the load needs to be tweaked, seating depth etc., that is all verified and recorded before completion of the lot. Some rifles will grow longer in origin of rifling quicker, some slower. Bullet barrel interaction will always dictate subsequent lots of ammunition when searching for the most accurate load you can achieve with a given set of components and weapon. Unfortunately that is something every shooter will ALWAYS deal with until someone develops a process for unobtainium production.🤣
It seems like a lot of work, and I guess to some people it is, but once you have the basics recorded for each rifle the changes are generally minute if you stick to the routine and have quality components assembled. I know some long-range hunters that will load as many as 200-300 rounds of a specific load. In the smaller calibers/non-mag I would say that would be OK, with the caveat that seating that last hundred rounds you might want to leave them a little long for chamber measurement and reseating for chamber measurements. I will end with this. Once loads are developed for our rifles, confirmed out to maximum range, BDC established, will only see 10 rounds a year to confirm dope at mid and far range, as well as harvest the animal. They are strictly work guns to put meat in the freezer, not recreational shooting. I wish you good shooting, and record everything! The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. It will pay off in the end.
 

FatOldMIHunter

Active Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2018
Messages
40
I'm finishing final loads for a couple of hunting rifles and was curious once load development is complete, how many rounds folks typically load for a hunting season? Not talking any type of competition shooting just how many rounds you'll typically load for a rifle for a upcoming individual hunt or hunting season. I've been in probably the not so good habit of loading 30-40 rounds a month or so before the hunt to revalidate velocity and drops, confirm zero and have 20 or so left for the hunt.

Would I be better served to load 50-100 and be done with it for a couple three seasons?
By the time I've got a load fully developed I might be running low on some component, so it might be as little as 10-15. But assuming I've got the components, I prefer to have 40-50 for 2-3 deer seasons.
 

AZHTR

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
May 10, 2018
Messages
72
Location
Arizona
Since I very rarely draw a deer tag here in AZ, I took up long range shooting in 2015. (trouble finding reloading stuff in 2015 too). But I now shoot two 7mm Mags and run through about 1000/1200 rounds per year. I have enough reloading stuff for about another year.😳
 

Lenny Foffa

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Joined
Mar 6, 2017
Messages
305
..........and also after that last final range session( #7 ) just before I leave for the hunt, I do not clean the rifle. Those last last several Groups get cut out , tapped in the Binder, and remembered by me on the hunt.
 

Mike Matteson

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Joined
Jun 26, 2017
Messages
818
I generally take 40 to 60 round for my rifle for hunting if going some distance. If local only 20 rounds. I generally don't load more than 40 to 60 for that rifle. The most I shoot is at the range to check to see if my rifle is on and that's only about 10 to 30 rounds, unless working up a load for that rifle. Once I have that load perfected that what I stay with. I will use a different rifle for other game. All my loading the velocity are real close to the same. So the drop is almost the same at any given yardage, which the velocity are about 3200fps. It's not much to remember where to hold to shot. With the range finder now, no longer have to guess the distance from you to the animal. The only one that has higher velocity is my 220 swift. That I will load a 100 rounds if going varmint hunting for ground squirrels. Even in Africa I only carried 50 rounds, and the only reason for that is in case my rifle scope is off. I will carry while hunting 12 rounds. 4 in the rifle and 2 set of 4 in my pockets. In Africa I only shot 3 rounds checking to be sure that it's zero in, and 3 or so for the animals I shoot. Shot place is where it is. Only one animal took a second round in Africa. Only shotgun is where I shot a lot dove hunting, and there I take cases of a Real cases (500) to hunt with. Presently having a 338 WM in a 26" barrel being built with a 1-10 twist, and a 6mm-280AI in a 30" barrel heavy, and that will take some reloading to see what I am going to use. That one I will a NightForce 3x15 on it. Looking to go out to 700 to 800 yards with it.
 

Greyfox

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Joined
Jan 21, 2008
Messages
5,696
Location
Northeast
I have several rifles that I shoot year round for targets, practice, and competition which annually runs 1000-2000 rounds. I have pretty much used the same rifle/cartridge for my LRH for about a dozen years.
For the season I load/shoot 60-100 rounds from this rifle. Usually, 20 rounds are carried/used for hunting. The balance is used for practice and load/ballistic confirmation.
 

wonderman4

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Joined
Oct 7, 2013
Messages
176
Location
South Texas
Hunting cartridges only: maybe 10-20 cartridges at the most. Target practice was not listed in the OP, so I am not including that.

The first year I got my 460, I only loaded 5 rounds. Shot a deer with one of them and that was it.
 

JustMe2

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Joined
Feb 18, 2012
Messages
206
You asked about "hunting rifle" use. My hunting rifle use over the last 50 years is much different from the above posters. My deer hunting rifles 300WM or 3006 shoot very consistently from year to year. Consequently, I shoot one round each year from a cold bore to check my scope. Year after year after year, they always hit within a half inch at 100 yards. The next shot will be a DRT deer. I rarely shoot more than once per deer season. So, I usually shoot 2 rounds on whichever rifle I decide to use that year.

My AR-10, night scoped, 308 Win, hog rifle I shoot quite a bit more. I don't even check the accuracy and just go hog hunting/exterminating each year while it's cool here in Florida. I probably shoot 20 hogs a year and give the meat to locals that need it. Always a head shot at about 100 yrds. Haven't missed yet. Not bragging, just telling it the way it has been for years.

Not meat hunting, but I practice out to 1200 yards on steel using a GAP chassis 6.5 Creedmore. Probably shoot 1000 +/- 500 rounds a year. Also practice with a Daystate .22 PSP air rifle on varmints. Probably shooting 500 pellets per year.
 

LRNut

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Joined
Dec 4, 2004
Messages
264
Location
Arizona/Colorado
The more you shoot, the better you get. Unlike sex, practice is more important than desire when it comes to getting better.

When I am in Colorado I shoot 2-6 rounds every day at 715 and 905 (I need to put a gong out at 1200 or so as well), depending on the wind. I generally shoot one shot early in the morning; IMO, that is a hard condition to dope; no mirage, generally calm, but every so often there is a slight wind not detectable from my shooting position. I will also take shots when the wind is really blowing (like today). I also try and shoot six shots offhand every day at 100 yards with my .223; LR may be fun, but I would guess a guy that can hit a deer's vitals offhand at 100 every time is going to do better than someone whose only talent is to shoot LR prone.

In Arizona I get out at least once a week to shoot 800 or more yards. I go to the range and shoot 10 shots once a week offhand at 100, as well as shoot six shots at 300 sitting with a sling and at least once per week prone or bipod sitting at 500 yards. I also shoot a lot of .45 APC at 25 and bust a lot of claybirds.
 

DarryH

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Joined
Feb 4, 2014
Messages
57
Location
Omaha, Nebraska area
1-3 to check zero, 1-3 for deer, assuming more than one deer. If I just want to have fun at the range, and I'm feeling rich, a box or two to send downrange. Some years, 1 for zero, and 1 for a deer. Box of 20 has occasionally lasted 3-4 years. worst year even, took me 10 rounds to zero and kill a deer.
 

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