I am new to this forum and also to long range hunting but I will be needing to head in that direction since now that we are empty nesters and my wife wants to join me but with the reality that she is not as mobile. I have in the past really loved to hunt - especially elk. And I want to get back into it as a means to so provide for some of the healthiest read meat on the planet. We - 2 sons and daughter have shot elk with mostly 7-08, 270, and 308. These calibers are good for deer but I would say in my experience they are a bit on the smaller size for elk. So I am wanting something that will tend to drop an elk rather than result in me wondering if I shot them or not. I have actually heard the whack of what I thought was bullet hitting without them dropping and or finding them later. A bullet hitting snow covered hillside doesn't sound close to the 'whack' of an elk being hit - does it? On several occasions that could have been it but I don't think so. So I want to up the felt shock - one might reload using Berger VLD hunting bullets - I would choose the 284Win or 6.5X284 Norma but even at that it has me wondering if its the best solution - what do you all think that have had actual experiences hunting with these 'shock' Berger smaller caliber type bullets? - Would they be enough to tend to drop elk or does one really need to move up to a bigger bore like in 338 Lapua? The problem with these big boys for me is combination of the blast of extra noise and felt recoil. Even the 'boom' of a 3006 tends to make me want to start flinching after about 3 shots and 7Win Mag also - I have always had better than normal or 'sensitive' hearing and like to keep it that way. Now if I do move up to like say a 338 Lapua I could install a suppressor or recoil/silencer - what are some good 338 Lapua type suppressors and where can they be ordered from? That 300gr Berger 338 bullet is a screamer if I can only keep it from making me scream ( : - I really would like to buy a Savage LRH 111 in 338 Lapua and add a suppressor - any suggestions as to my situation and possible viable solution? A 300gr Berger VLD should let me know if I hit my mark or not! Thanks for any insight - info - and imput!