Long Range Hunting Caliber


Jul 17, 2002
Southern California
I'm new to this forum and note a lot of knowledge resides on this forum. I would like to get into some long range shooting, primarily for sport, but I also hunt. I have a Savage 116 stainless in 300 RUM that is a very accurate shooter. Is this too much gun for shooting long range? What would be a recommended scope magnification to get started. I'll probably start at about 600 yds but may want to try out up to 1000 yds. I'm a very experienced shooter at ranges below 300 yds and have a lot of reloading experience. Thanks in advance for your wisdom.
If your were only going out to 600 yards and recoil is an issue then I'd say too much gun. But you mentioned hunting, 1000 yards and I'm going to assume small to large game then I think the 300 RUM is a good choice. If recoil is an issue then this can be minimized with a brake. As far as recommended scope magnification...some will say variable up to 10x and folks like myself would suggest variable up to 22X, 32X or even 42X...it's a personnal thing...each shooter has their preference. For me the eyes aren't what they used to be so I prefer higher but the higher you go the more you'll have to deal with mirage. If your eyes are still good then I'd think something in the range of 4-20X would do you fine. Good luck and enjoy.
In the game of LRH, the natural progression is to the bigger & faster cartridges. The reason for this is primarily to shoot the higher BC (ballistic coefficient) bullets that buck the wind better. The 300 RUM is one of many calibers that shine in this department. Bullet weights in the 200-220 range are what you want for your 300 RUM, but be sure your barrel twist rate is 1 in 10 (I was able to stabilize a 200 gr. AB in my 300 RUM with a Lilja 1 in 11 twist barrel).

As for magnification, most of us choose a higher magnification scope not to see the target/animal closer - but to see or "read" what the wind is doing down range.

You will notice that both my answers deal with the wind. Gravity is a constant and plays a major roll in calculating bullet drop. Once you have your drop calculated it is pretty much static, unless elevation/baro pressure changes. Wind is the big boogeyman that results in horizontal dispersion of your group at longer distances. It is usually not much of a factor under 400-500 yds., but over that distance it can really begin to mess you up. Save your $$$ and buy good glass that has great clarity and outstanding definition for reading vegetation and mirage down range.
Last edited:
If your feeling a little over gunned at the moment you could screw on a 300WSM barrel and shoot it out to 1000yrd and get comfortable with it. It would save your RUM barrel for when your ready.
Those are very nice rifles, I let one slip past me last year and am really kicking myself for it.:D
Great gun choice. For LRH you need something that will take care of business. The RUM will definitely fill the bill. There is no such thing as too big when it comes to harvesting game farther down range. Using any 200+ grain bullet will do the trick.

As far as optics are concerned, it a matter of personal preference. The smaller the target, the more power you are going to need to see it. I had to go from a 14x Mil-dot to an 18x with target dot to see groundhogs at 1000+yards. That will benefit you in your target shooting as well.

I ordered a Nikon Monarch 6X24X50mm which has the side parallax and focus. It has target turrets and the BDC reticle. Looks like a pretty good scope. I just have to figure out how to use it.

I have already developed a load using the 200 grain Nosler Accubond for my 300 RUM. On a good shooting day I can get three shot groups at 3/8". By the way this gun has the Savage factory brake installed.

Any further suggestions will be greatly appreciated since this is my first attempt for long range work.
The Monarch only has 30MOA of elevation to work with and you will chew some of that up getting a zero, you may want to look into a tapered base.
Get a chronograph. Develop a load with as small SD/ES as you can. The less velocity spread means less vertical stringing at long range.I've seen 100yd groups in the .5 range that had 80fps spread. You start shooting out yonder with that load and it will open up vertically. It will also react differently in the wind.
Thanks for the comments. I do have a chronograph and will have to run some 200 grain Accubonds through it again to determine the SD/ED of this load. The 200 grain Accubond has a BC of .588. When I develped the load I wasn't too concerned about SD/ED because the load was plenty accurate for normal range hunting.

Are there ballistic tables somewhere that will give me the effect of moving the elevation turret at various ranges? For instance if I'm shooting at a target 600 yards away, how much will a 1/8 MOA (the Monarch has 1/8 MOA clicks on the scope) adjustment up or down move the trajectory up or down in inches? I know the charts would be approximate and would have to be proven in the field. The same info would be needed for the windage turret.

How can I learn to estimate wind velocity by looking through the scope in the vicinity of the target? Are there some videos or on line web sites that could help me learn?

I realize I have a lot to learn. Thanks for your help gentlemen.
Try the JBM website. Berger also have a ballistic program on their website now. A lot of ballistic programs will give you adjustments in MOA so whether you have 1/8 MOA or 1/4 MOA doesn't matter.
For wind look back through the articles and find the one Shawn Carlock wrote. Also get a windmeter if you have don't have one. Get the reading where you are, look at how things around you are moving, and then compare that to the target area.

HuntingNut News Official PointBlank downloads Page
You can convert the tables to inches MOA or Mils.

Huskemaw - BC Calculator
I'd suggest the 208 A-MAX, 210 Berger and 220 MK are all over .6 The JLK 190 bc is .602 The 210 and 210lbt are .665 and .680 and all will shoot through a 10 twist. You have the juice to push these bigger bullets. All will have less wind drift than the AB's. Also I'd suggest having the bullets coated with moly or nitrate. I get better sd/es with coated vs non coated in my guns.
Warning! This thread is more than 14 years ago old.
It's likely that no further discussion is required, in which case we recommend starting a new thread. If however you feel your response is required you can still do so.

Recent Posts