Max effective range for .22-250

lenny 308

New Member
Oct 18, 2009
What would be the max effective range for a .22-250 shoting 45 grain hollow points and still having ethical kills? I know I could shoot farther with heavier bullets but my gun just seems to like the 45's. Thanks for any input.
What would be the max effective range for a .22-250 shoting 45 grain hollow points and still having ethical kills? I know I could shoot farther with heavier bullets but my gun just seems to like the 45's. Thanks for any input.

I assume you're shooting at varmints like groundhogs and/or coyotes.

Although the maxx effective range might be farther, the little 45 grain bullet would probably only be accurate to 400. I have a 223 that shoots 55grain bullets just fine at 400. At 600 accuracy comes apart.
Sorry, I guess I should have mentioned that I would be shooting coyotes and fox (I thought since I was posting in the coyote hunting forum it would be self expanitory). Thanks for the information, I appreciate it.
308, i use a 22-250 a lot for coyotes & bobcat , and it works great, as for range, i rarely shoot over 200-250 yards, but have made a few kills out to 500+ yards, , its not how far your gun will shoot its how far you can shoot and make a kill shot,gun)most guys dont talk about their misses at long range or up close.shoot to kill . what ever the range.
I am shooting Privi 55 grain SP's and Winchester Super X 64 grain PP's. Within 200 yards they both have about the same point of impact and aim is pretty much direct aiming on the target with no compensation. Beyond that, compensation for elevation and windage becomes a lot more important.

I am shooting a Savage Model 12 Varmint Low Profile 22-250 with a 1 in 9 inch twist barrel. Having a good handle on range and the bullet ballistic profile will help get you on target much easier. At first I had a difficult time hitting targets at 400 yards. It is tough to see where the bullets hit. A spotter will help with a good spotting scope. With a 200 yard zero I read up and determined from the online ballistic data that bullet drop from 200 yards to 400 yards was approximately 16 to 18 inches. Estimating and appling this much hold over yeilded a hit with each shot. A tactic "zero stop" adjustment scope can help make this task much easier and more consistent.

I agree with the above effective ranges. If your rifle barrel can stabilize a longer/heavier bullet, the effective range can be greately increased.
What twist is your barrel ? You stated that your gun likes the 45 s best,but will your gun shoot 50 to 55 gr.bullets to or sub m.o.a. ?
The reason I ask is because I have heard reports of some blowups on coyotes with lighter 40 to 45 gr bullets. Also they are much more prone to wind drift too.
The effective range of a 22-250 depends on the shooter and not the gun, if you are just shooting coyote's then I would sight in for three hundred yards as MPBR, not the 200 yds that someone else suggested, your bullet drop at 400 should be around to 12.4 at 500yds it would be 37.8 inches, at 100 yds you will be 3.1 inches high and at 200yds you will be 4.2 inches high, you must handload but you did not say that you do shooting a heavier bullet would increase your effective range on coyotes, also there would be less wind drift with a heavier bullet, also a Timmey or Canjar trigger would help out alot that is what I have on my Remington 22-250 and a BSA 6x24x50 scope, shoot under a dime at 100 yad five shot group using a 50 grain bullet, " The better you can see the better you can shoot", with that scope I have shot groups under 2 inches at 400yds
Looking at Remington Arms bullet ballistics on there hollow point . It has no data over 200 yards. Your best bet for the 22-250 is to go with a Hornady V-Max . it does an awesome job without a lot of pelt damage. And still be deadly way beyond 200 yards.Try and stay away from the lighter bullets.gun)
Hey 308,
Go hunting and learn on your own. I would not listen to the "wanna-be-mighty-coyote-hunters" on this site. In about 27 years I have put down 700-1000 coyotes by hunting, trapping, snaring and calling. Last time I posted advice here I got ran into the ground. Go do your thing and don't let anyone tell you that you are right or wrong. What works for you may not work for me and visa-versa.
I would never sight in a gun for more than 3/4ths anticipated target size. This means that for an ~6" maximum target size for a broadside coyote, sight in the rig for a conservative MPBR of 2.3-2.5" above line of sight. If you try the liberal MPBR sight in system where you're trying to stretch PBR to the absolute maximum you're PROBABLY gonna shoot over some coyotes, and when that means 1 coyote called or encountered in a full day of 5 degrees coyote hunting that's a big price to pay (it has been for me at least).

If you're shooting a 9-10" twist 22 barrel i'd suggest the 65 Sierra GK. I think that bullet is the best for all around coyote hunting--short to ranges.

I used the 40-45's for a number of years and liked them for their fur-friendliness (relatively speaking), but since i'm not killing 40-70/season as in days gone by, i shoot whatever works best to long range and just sew when i need to.
I've used my 22-250 for a lot things including deer. The longest shot I have ever made with it on game was 494yds. The 50gr bullet dropped the deer in its tracks. It was quartering to me and I placed the shot through the neck. I would use the 22-250 for coyotes at any range I could place a hit. The round is way to light for long range deer hunting. The only reason I did what I did is because somebody said I could never make the shot. WRONG THING TO SAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I had the same question for my .22-250 so I called these manufactures and they stated that Federal American Eagle 50gr , Remington UMC 50gr and the PPU 55gr all require a minimum of 1600 fps to expand which is out to 500 to 550 yards for hunting purposes.

Most ammo will reach out well past 500 yards but not recommended for hunting because they won't expand but pass through leaving little or no blood trail. On the other hand if your shooting steel plates then expansion isn't an issue. Just the clang! of a hit.
They don't expand well at close range either . 50 yards and under they just punch a hole their size straight through . I have made kill shots on coyote out to 550 yards but for myself that's as far as I would want to go out for them .
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