Mule deer caliber

Plinker147

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Joined
Feb 7, 2015
Messages
963
25-06 is one of my favorite and the first rifle I bought with my own money. Ive killed mule deer from 50 to 600yards with 115 BT. Perfect deer round but it does gas out around 600.
 

Raudy707

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Joined
Apr 16, 2018
Messages
421
Location
Mendo
I love the 25-06! It was my first deer rifle. I dumped 54 bucks 30 something hogs, 2 black bear and my first 2 bull elk with that little quarter bore. I don't recall shooting many animals twice. It was stolen and ironically I bought a Tikka 270 wsm (basically 6.8 Western) because it was left handed and I had always been shooting a right hand model 70 and rolling the rifle to work the bolt. I am not a huge fan of the SST bullet but I wouldn't hesitate to shoot any Mule deer buck with a 120 grain Partition or 110 Accubond. I know Partition's aren't known for long range accuracy but I did kill a Blacktail buck at 680 yards one season. It was back in the day of just 3-9x40 duplex scopes and I laid down prone and fired my first shot with the heavy duplex on his heart. Hit by the bucks hoof. I walked it up and fired. Buck whirled around and I thought I shot right through him. My buddy said right under his belly. I said ok. Brought the heavy duplex up to his back and said he's going down on this one. Sure enough the Partition broke the shoulder blade, a rib and took out the lungs then exited with a 50 cent size hole. Buck fell over dead as a stone. 24" 4x3 blacktail. Anyways, thanks for a tour down memory lane I sure miss that 25-06.
 

kstrick

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Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
144
I booked my first mule deer hunt and was wondering which caliber I should use. My first deer gun is a 25-06 shooting 117 Hornady SSTs and has killed every whitetail ever shot very fast. My second is the 6.8 western shooting 175 grain Sierra game kings. Both guns shoot around 1/2 inch 5 shot groups at 100. My 25-06 has a swarovski 3.5x18 and the 6.8 has a nightforce nx8 2.5x20. The swaro is definitely better for getting on the target fast but the nx8 can let me dial out way further. The guide did say most shots will be out to 100 but occasionally have to shoot further. For those of you who have shot Mule deer, which one would you choose?
Which ever rifle you shoot the best. Mule deer are not bullet proof.
 

michael carlucci

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Joined
Jun 14, 2019
Messages
26
Location
new jersey
I booked my first mule deer hunt and was wondering which caliber I should use. My first deer gun is a 25-06 shooting 117 Hornady SSTs and has killed every whitetail ever shot very fast. My second is the 6.8 western shooting 175 grain Sierra game kings. Both guns shoot around 1/2 inch 5 shot groups at 100. My 25-06 has a swarovski 3.5x18 and the 6.8 has a nightforce nx8 2.5x20. The swaro is definitely better for getting on the target fast but the nx8 can let me dial out way further. The guide did say most shots will be out to 100 but occasionally have to shoot further. For those of you who have shot Mule deer, which one would you choose?

Both will do it, I'd go with the 6.8.
I booked my first mule deer hunt and was wondering which caliber I should use. My first deer gun is a 25-06 shooting 117 Hornady SSTs and has killed every whitetail ever shot very fast. My second is the 6.8 western shooting 175 grain Sierra game kings. Both guns shoot around 1/2 inch 5 shot groups at 100. My 25-06 has a swarovski 3.5x18 and the 6.8 has a nightforce nx8 2.5x20. The swaro is definitely better for getting on the target fast but the nx8 can let me dial out way further. The guide did say most shots will be out to 100 but occasionally have to shoot further. For those of you who have shot Mule deer, which one would you choose?
Awesome, that is kinda what I'm leaning towards. Thanks for your opinion
i would use the flattest shooting very high bc bullets available its quite possible to come across a monster buck 300 to 500 yards away choose carefully the wind is also a major factor its not killing power its being able to make a killing shot at those ranges .i have used 7mmrem mag handloaded with 150to 160 gr bullets 3050 to 3150 one of the best use the highest bc bullet in 25 06 most likely speer 120 gr boat tail.if you hand load.
 

Raudy707

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Joined
Apr 16, 2018
Messages
421
Location
Mendo
Thanks for the help guys. Any recommendations on which shooting sticks to bring out west? I have tried the primos trigger sticks but they didn't feel very steady, even at 100 yards
You're just going to have to practice and get more comfortable with them. Odds are the sage or oak brush is gonna be too tall for bipods so you really have to practice shooting off a tripod on your knees or standing. My kids have always liked the tripod trigger sticks. Just make little circles and cut it loose!
 

vancewalker007

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Joined
Mar 30, 2013
Messages
686
i would use the flattest shooting very high bc bullets available its quite possible to come across a monster buck 300 to 500 yards away choose carefully the wind is also a major factor its not killing power its being able to make a killing shot at those ranges .i have used 7mmrem mag handloaded with 150to 160 gr bullets 3050 to 3150 one of the best use the highest bc bullet in 25 06 most likely speer 120 gr boat tail.if you hand load.
He already has 2 bullets that he's shooting that he intends to choose from per his original post. A 25 cal 117 Hornady SST and a 270 cal 175 grain Sierra Game King. The 175 smokes the 115 in BC.
 

Lenny Foffa

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Joined
Mar 6, 2017
Messages
576
I’m. A. 270. Guy. So. I’d. Go with the. 6.8, and switch scopes. If. That would. Make you feel better!!! I’m. Not sure about. The 170 Grn. GK Bullets ! They. May. Be. Just. Fine for deer but , i. Would Hope. They are. Not tough Elk bullets !?!? I would. Ask these Guys about using that bullet for deer. I. Prefer a bullet that. Will. Expand rapidly on deer ! Get into. The. Chest cavity and Totally blow up the heart and Lungs and never exit !! Best of luck to you!!!!
 

Montucky Roamer

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Joined
Mar 2, 2017
Messages
215
Location
NW MT
Like said , whichever rifle you shoot best and have the most and best data and experience with. The 270 has a solid edge at distance tho. But did the guide really say most shots inside 100 yards?
Bipods, I highly recommend a spartan precision with a flush gunsmith adapter. Handy in vest pocket but out of the way for still hunting and super light. And bring trekking poles but experiment with them and looping the handle to use as shooting sticks.
Also, run some drills , timing yourself , to go: from hiking with pack, gun on sling or however you hunt, to getting two accurate shots off at just 100 yards..in prone position, prone over pack , seated over top of pack.
The first time thru the drill will likely be EXTREMELY eye opening at how much fumbling with buckles and slings and rangefinders happens.
Start time at go, remove pack,do things, shoot , stop time.
I run this with a 22 also once in a while for a humbling experience.
 

Louis3300

Active Member
Joined
Aug 20, 2006
Messages
30
Location
Colorado
I have killed a lot of deer and a few elk with a 25-06 shooting 115gr. Ballistic tips. Usually DRT at the shot. I am sure the 117's will work just fine. But like a lot of folks have said. "Shoot what you shoot best"

Good luck on your hunt!
 

comen

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Joined
Aug 13, 2012
Messages
86
Location
Eureka, Mt
Thanks for the help guys. Any recommendations on which shooting sticks to bring out west? I have tried the primos trigger sticks but they didn't feel very steady, even at 100 yards
4 Stable Sticks. The sitting version is great for gophers and prairie dogs out to 400 yards. I used standing sticks for 4 deer this year, all between 200 to 300 yards
 
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