If you could only have 3 long guns, which would you choose?

223 for plinking, varmints, predators, etc.

6.8 Western for medium and large game at all distances.

35 Whelen AI for med/large/dangerous game at short to intermediate range and heavy cover.

Mostly I picked them because I already have these rifles in my repertoire, but I feel it's a strong representation of anything I'd ever need outside of a good shotgun.
I am way behind on this post, as I just now saw it for the first time. But the topic really intrigued me. It is very interesting to me to see everyone’s opinions on what caliber is best, let alone top three calibers to cover every need. So I am posting the three that I have to let you all know what are the correct three to choose🤠.

I have a 22-250AI, 6.5 PRC and a 28 Nosler. I love all three as each fill a specific need. Plus they can be used for ringing steel and fun shooting (I don’t shoot the 28 much at steel as I can’t afford to put barrels on it regularly). Again I love topics like this as it allows us in the shooting community to see where fellow shooters stand on personal opinions, when in all reality there is really no wrong answer to this question.
Guys, perhaps what might help here is a "short" reason for why we picked the cartridges we did, so others can see the reasoning due to the area we live in and our likes and dislikes in those cartridges and weapons... Just a thought. :) Cheers.
Just saw and read through this thread - very enjoyable!

Choosing only from what I’ve got…

17 HMR Ruger American (love my 10/22 but this thing can shoot the eyes out of a squirrel) for practice and small game
12 gauge - waterfowl, upland game, deer/defense in a pinch
300 PRC for big game.

However, if rifles only and free to choose any cartridge)

22lr bolt action for cost, availability, training, and teaching (Have been thinking about a Tikka T1x)

7 PRC for big game for tolerable recoil and versatility, long range hunting

375 ruger because I’ve always wanted one, though I have no need for one and probably never will. Fortunately, I’ve got a friend with one and am going to give his a try. Would be my choice for brown bear or a trip to Africa.

Now that I think about it, I need one of each of these - I better get shopping!
My CZ457 (with a Dead Air Mask) .22LR

The link should go to a video I made with a Firebird Target. Shot 4 is the second target and Shot 5 is the 1st target , The camera for the video was set up in front of (about 20') and to the right of the rifle muzzle.

The rest aren't so easy.

I have a .20 PPC built by Defensive Edge
.338 Edge, also built by Defensive Edge. Both of these outshoot me. Getting my hands in this ammo is easy. I make them. I have my "fair share" of "components for them.

.223 in a 700 TAC, changed the trigger, it shoots real nice for a factory gun

7mm Rem Magnum 700 Sendero. It's a good factory shooter too.

.308 in a 700 TAC. I haven't given it any attention other than changing the trigger
Ammo is easy with these too

I haven't thought about the AR's. I guess I lose this contest.
Maybe I should pair down my collection. Truthfully, I have my favorites and the others could be framed and hung on a wall. Some are invaluable but for sentimental reasons. I'm not asking for those to be included in the list. But let's say, purely for whimsical gab, that you could only have 3 calibers, any calibers, which would you choose?
At this moment mine would be 22-250, 270 wsm, and 300 win mag
Maybe we looked at the question a little differently, so yeah “really”. If you were only allowed by LAW to own “3 long guns” which by ATF definition a 22LR and shotgun are, then yes for sure I would want a 12ga Shotgun but not a 22. My prior answer was based on this thinking and with the possibilities of some day needing to be a survivalist and the ability to take birds and small game for food.

If the question was worded meaning you could only have 3 long gun rifles then my answer would be different. Still, if I was only allowed legally to have “3 long guns” then a Semi-Auto shotgun would definitely be one. Outfitted with a scoped slug barrel and also a adjustable choke shot barrel. Still stay with the 308 and 300WSM.
Yes Sir I agree.