The Ultimate Light Weight Sheep Hunting Rifle - What Is It?

Greg Duerr

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Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
1,115
Location
Reno, Nevada
I built a light weight Mt Rifle...................

Remington Mt Rifle...............7mm-08
McMillian Edge stock
Jewell trigger
PacNor Super Match SS 22" 1x9 #3
140gr Berger VLD
S and K Bases and Rings
Leupold Compact 3-9

If I had to do it over I would chamber it for the 6.5mm Remington Magnum
 

stevecrea

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Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
15
Location
Boise, idaho
I do agree with Harold regarding getting in shape, rather than fretting over an ounce here or there on your rifle and scope combination. After all, you are going to be wearing some kind of a pack, carrying ammo, carrying water, carrying lunch, be dressed warmly, etc. Accordingly, spend more time and money getting in shape.

As far as the 50mm scope objective, I also would tend to agree. There are a lot of good lightweight and smaller profile scopes available.

For me, I am very interested in the Weathery Ultralight Mark V in either .257 Weatherby or .300 Weatherby. Although I do not have one yet, one of them is on my wishlist. At about 6.5 lbs. and with the punch to shoot 500 yards, or even more, this is interesting.
 

mnoland30

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Joined
Dec 24, 2010
Messages
271
I've got a Browning Mountain Titanium in 7mm WSM. I love that gun. It is easy to carry, packs plenty of punch, and shoots well. Most importantly, it didn't cost more than the first 5 cars I owned. I started with a Leupold 2-7 compact, but decided while trying to find a moving elk in the scope at 400 yards, that a little larger objective would be nice, and also got the turrets. I like the turrets, but I've noticed while carrying that it doesn't maintain zero. If it spins to 400 yards, that might make a close shot dicey. I use a homemade Safari sling copied from the one I purchased from Cabela's with lighter material, and using small split rings to connect to the posts. That cut 2 or 3 ounces off, and eliminates the adjustment buckle from clanking. After years of using my old sling, I knew what length I needed. I hunt Barbary sheep, elk, deer, antelope, and javelina. After the kill walking out with a full pack, the weight of the rifle still makes a big difference.
 

stevecrea

Member
Joined
May 22, 2011
Messages
15
Location
Boise, idaho
That is a very nice combination. I love the A-bolt Brownings, and I had a Medallion in .223 that I shot so much at jacks that I shot the barrel out.
 

Rocky Mountain

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Joined
Sep 13, 2010
Messages
393
Location
New Zealand
Yip the browning titanium is a great light rifle for sheep hunting.
But don't forget the Remington 700 titanium as well, if your wanting to go the factory option way. If Money and time isn't a worry then the worlds best light weight parts are at your finger tips in any caliber you might need depending on your hunt.
 

mnoland30

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Joined
Dec 24, 2010
Messages
271
The first time I fondled a Remington Ti, I knew I had to have one. But, they don't make a left handed version. I had a very bad experience with the safety flipping off on my 700 because I was carrying a RH rifle on my left side. Gun went off nearly in my ear. Browning, on the other hand, has a tang safety. Much more convenient, and much less likely to flip off safe accidentally. I've shot RH rifles more than left, so when I could finally afford a LH, I wasn't very comfortable with it. The RH Mountain Ti is accurate enough and powerful enough that if I do my job, I don't need a second shot. In 40 years of hunting, I've only really wished for a fast second shot once or twice.

As for getting in shape, I've found the Forest Service Firefighter pack test to be the best. You walk 3 miles in 45 minutes carrying a 45 lb. pack. I found the fast pace was hard on my hips after a few years, so I walk slower now, but the pack builds the same muscles you use for up hill (even though I walk on flat ground). I hike better now than I did 15 years ago when I was running 3 miles a day. I can hike steep hills without that burning in the calves. I'm also used to the straps, so I don't suffer sore shoulders on the hunt. Makes the hunt much more fun.

The other trick for old guys like me is Endurox. Runners and bikers use it. It is guaranteed to increase your endurance by 10%. You take immediately after exercise and it gets rid of the lactic acid that makes muscles sore, and allows them to heal faster. I take it with me hunting and take it at lunch and when I get back to camp. It works! My pack test times shorten dramatically when I use it.
 

magnum

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Joined
Apr 24, 2004
Messages
53
Location
Queensland, Australia
There are not many sheep (worth hunting that is) in Australia, but I do have a mountain rifle that would fit the bill. Being a bit if a traditionalist (and when I was getting into hunting with the writings of the late, great Jack O'Connor) my current rig is:

> Winchester pre 64 Model 70 Featherweight
> Caliber = .270 Win
> Leupold VX-I 4-12 x 40
> Conetrol Custum 2 bases and projectionless rings
> Load = 140 gr Hornady SPBT interlocks at a chronographed 3,044 fps. This is a warm (over table maximum) for alpine hunting conditions)

Total weight a tad over 7.5 lbs (not an untra alight) but light enough to attach to a backpack (see pic below)

rifle_NZ2.png


Though I have not done any sheep hunting I took a Tahr and Chamois hunt in the southern mountain of New Zealand last winter with this rifle. For this hunt my guide, Croc Adams at Tahr, Stag, Chamois and Fallow Deer hunting in New Zealand's South Island suggested a 200 yard zero with gave a PBR of 250 yards.

DSCF2605_Doc.jpg


I took this representative Chamois high in the snow (around 4,500 feet elevation) from above at around 200 yards. Clean one shot kill.

However, for a sheep hunt (after reading the experiences on LRH) I'd opt for O'Connor's 3" high at 100 yards (close to 275 yard zero) putting it 1.5" low at 300 yards and 12.5" low at 400 yards.

However, if I were buying a sheep/mountain rifle today I think I'd break with tradition and it'd look something like this:

> HS Precision PHL (I like the ½ MOA guarantee), Kimber Montana or custom build on a Winchester classic action (current fwts and EW are, in my view, too heavy for a mountain rifle)
> Caliber = 270 WSM
> Leupold VX-3 3.5-10 x 40 CDS
> Conetrol Custum 2 piece bases and rings
> Load = 140 Hornady SPBT interlocks at around 3,200 fps

This is a great thread and enjoyed immensely reading the views and experiences of the posters.

Cheers and God bless,
Magnum
 

coyotezapper

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Joined
Sep 26, 2009
Messages
988
Location
Central Utah
Magnum, Thanks for the pics. They always add to the conversation. One question for you though. Why the 270 WSM??? I have never understood the 27 caliber fascination. If it wasn't for Jack O'Conner I think that the 280 Remington would be recognized for its merits. There is nothing that the 270 Win does that the 280 doesn't do better in my opinion.
 

magnum

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Joined
Apr 24, 2004
Messages
53
Location
Queensland, Australia
Magnum, Thanks for the pics. They always add to the conversation. One question for you though. Why the 270 WSM??? I have never understood the 27 caliber fascination. If it wasn't for Jack O'Conner I think that the 280 Remington would be recognized for its merits. There is nothing that the 270 Win does that the 280 doesn't do better in my opinion.

Coyote,

Thanks for your comment and question. Whilst respecting your view, I hold the contrary view and have done so for more year (decades) than I care to admit. I believe the popularity of the .270 (Win and WSM) is due to the inherent capabilities of the caliber and that the late great Jack O'Connor just wrote about them.

Having said that we are all reach our destination through different routes but it is the route that is colored by our experiences. For me the .270 Win was my second center-fire rifle back in the 70s (that's 1970s). Yes, I grew up on the writings of O'Connor and others, Keith, et al. But the 270 just impressed me with its ballistics. This rifle was based on a Mauser 98 and it shot sensationally and had power to spare for the hunting I'd do here. Hence the .270 Win became an instant favorite of mine.

Additionally I believe that the awesome capabilities of the .270 Win was extended with the introduction (in the 80s) of the 140 gr SPBT bullets. This bullet can be loaded to around 3,000 fps and gives almost as flat a trajectory as the famed 130 gr load but had (for all ranges past 100 yards) the retained energy of the 150 gr load. In the words of John Wootters (of Petersens publications), that's some compromise. The Hornady 140 gr interlock and SST with a BC of close to .5 is a favorite of mine.

In recent years I realized I had not had a 270 in my gun safe for 20 years and set about rectifying that. Being a traditionalist and liking classic rifles I found Winchester pre 64 M70 fwt in that caliber (I already had an identical rifle on .308 Win) on Gunsamerica and did the deal (and organized it's importation to Australia). The rest is history.

I have never been a 7mm fan and have only ever had a 7x57 (Ruger M77) for a while but sold it. I guess the 270 (launched in 1925) just had the jump on the 280 (lunched in 1957, I think). By the time the 280 was released the 270 had too great a hold amongst hunters (bit like the VSH and the Beta video recorders). The other issue, as Craig Boddington has pointed out in his writing, is the caliber jump (a mere .007") is just not significant enough and there is the great 30-06 if you want to go a bit larger, for the 180 gr plus bullets with really great penetration. I think this is my next purchase a Winchester pre 64 M70 fwt in 30-06), but that's another story. We are talking here about sheep/mountain rifles. Rifles that don't need the great penetration of some of the 7mm (and .30 cal 180 gr) bullets, but need to be flat shooting and light. This is what the 270 does best, in my view.

I understand that the 270 is the best selling of the WSMs. The 7mm WSM is not listed in Winchester Australia's product list for any of the Winchester or Browning rifles. Also Chuck Hawkes published a list of the most popular calibres, Readers Choice Rifle Cartridges. You will notice the .270 Win is No 3 whereas the .280 Rem does not appear.

Enjoy your hunting.
 
Last edited:

coyotezapper

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Joined
Sep 26, 2009
Messages
988
Location
Central Utah
Coyote,

Thanks for your comment and question. Whilst respecting your view, I hold the contrary view and have done so for more year (decades) than I care to admit. I believe the popularity of the .270 (Win and WSM) is due to the inherent capabilities of the caliber and that the late great Jack O'Connor just wrote about them.

Having said that we are all reach our destination through different routes but it is the route that is colored by our experiences. For me the .270 Win was my second center-fire rifle back in the 70s (that's 1970s). Yes, I grew up on the writings of O'Connor and others, Keith, et al. But the 270 just impressed me with its ballistics. This rifle was based on a Mauser 98 and it shot sensationally and had power to spare for the hunting I'd do here. Hence the .270 Win became an instant favorite of mine.

Additionally I believe that the awesome capabilities of the .270 Win was extended with the introduction (in the 80s) of the 140 gr SPBT bullets. This bullet can be loaded to around 3,000 fps and gives almost as flat a trajectory as the famed 130 gr load but had (for all ranges past 100 yards) the retained energy of the 150 gr load. In the words of John Wootters (of Petersens publications), that's some compromise. The Hornady 140 gr interlock and SST with a BC of close to .5 is a favorite of mine.

In recent years I realized I had not had a 270 in my gun safe for 20 years and set about rectifying that. Being a traditionalist and liking classic rifles I found Winchester pre 64 M70 fwt in that caliber (I already had an identical rifle on .308 Win) on Gunsamerica and did the deal (and organized it's importation to Australia). The rest is history.

I have never been a 7mm fan and have only ever had a 7x57 (Ruger M77) for a while but sold it. I guess the 270 (launched in 1925) just had the jump on the 280 (lunched in 1957, I think). By the time the 280 was released the 270 had too great a hold amongst hunters (bit like the VSH and the Beta video recorders). The other issue, as Craig Boddington has pointed out in his writing, is the caliber jump (a mere .007") is just not significant enough and there is the great 30-06 if you want to go a bit larger, for the 180 gr plus bullets with really great penetration. I think this is my next purchase a Winchester pre 64 M70 fwt in 30-06), but that's another story. We are talking here about sheep/mountain rifles. Rifles that don't need the great penetration of some of the 7mm (and .30 cal 180 gr) bullets, but need to be flat shooting and light. This is what the 270 does best, in my view.

I understand that the 270 is the best selling of the WSMs. The 7mm WSM is not listed in Winchester Australia's product list for any of the Winchester or Browning rifles. Also Chuck Hawkes published a list of the most popular calibres, Readers Choice Rifle Cartridges. You will notice the .270 Win is No 3 whereas the .280 Rem does not appear.

Enjoy your hunting.



Magnum,


Your path sounds a lot like mine. I also grew up hunting in the 70's. My first rifle was a Winchester M70 pre 64 243 winchester. I still own it today, although it never gets used anymore. I keep it has a collectible. At 17 I bought my first 7MM Mag and I have been a 7MM fan ever since. Right now I have a 7MM STW, 7MM Rem Mag, and my sheep rifle which is a 7MM 08 Ackley. It seems that the 7MM is either a hate it or love type of caliber. To each his own. I am building ( in a holding pattern right now waiting on reamer ) 6.5x47 Lapua and I have been told that once I shoot a 6.5 I will never look back. I don't think this will happen since in centerfires I shoot .17 to .35 calibers and they each have their place. If it has a trigger and goes bang I will most likely find a use for it. GOOD HUNTING!!!!
 

magnum

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2004
Messages
53
Location
Queensland, Australia
Magnum,


Your path sounds a lot like mine. I also grew up hunting in the 70's. My first rifle was a Winchester M70 pre 64 243 winchester. I still own it today, although it never gets used anymore. I keep it has a collectible. At 17 I bought my first 7MM Mag and I have been a 7MM fan ever since. Right now I have a 7MM STW, 7MM Rem Mag, and my sheep rifle which is a 7MM 08 Ackley. It seems that the 7MM is either a hate it or love type of caliber. To each his own. I am building ( in a holding pattern right now waiting on reamer ) 6.5x47 Lapua and I have been told that once I shoot a 6.5 I will never look back. I don't think this will happen since in centerfires I shoot .17 to .35 calibers and they each have their place. If it has a trigger and goes bang I will most likely find a use for it. GOOD HUNTING!!!!

Coyote,

Although we may differ in detail, I love to hear of hunter with passion for a caliber.

+1
 

brian loeb

New Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2012
Messages
1
Allthough i have not hunted sheep with it yet, i do feel the Nice WY mountain goat billy i got in 2009 counts for opinion.

My rig is a weatherby Ultralight weight MKV in 30-06(5.2LB). its topped with a Swaroski Z3 3x9-36(11.5oz) sitting in talley onepeice low rings/bases, and with 3 rds of 165gnr Barnes TSX/TTSX and a butler creek sling weighs 6.9lb just under 7 lbs with a ammo and sling aint bad considering it has a 24" barrel. took my billy at 340 yards, most people like short action rifles and think they are lighter,( true except with short action magnums WSM) the barrel countor and chamber countor is heavier then standard calibers. .308 is probally optimum for short action rifle but i like the extra case capacity of the gold old out dated best rifle caliber in the world 30-06. with my handloads is produces 7mm performance in a less bulky package. i like the 165/168grn bullets because the buck wind better then 150's but still shoot flat and retain enegry down range. just my take. the hard part is not deciding on a rifle or making the shot, its getting a TAG to harvest on of the maginificant sheep or goats.
 

coyotezapper

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2009
Messages
988
Location
Central Utah
Allthough i have not hunted sheep with it yet, i do feel the Nice WY mountain goat billy i got in 2009 counts for opinion.

My rig is a weatherby Ultralight weight MKV in 30-06(5.2LB). its topped with a Swaroski Z3 3x9-36(11.5oz) sitting in talley onepeice low rings/bases, and with 3 rds of 165gnr Barnes TSX/TTSX and a butler creek sling weighs 6.9lb just under 7 lbs with a ammo and sling aint bad considering it has a 24" barrel. took my billy at 340 yards, most people like short action rifles and think they are lighter,( true except with short action magnums WSM) the barrel countor and chamber countor is heavier then standard calibers. .308 is probally optimum for short action rifle but i like the extra case capacity of the gold old out dated best rifle caliber in the world 30-06. with my handloads is produces 7mm performance in a less bulky package. i like the 165/168grn bullets because the buck wind better then 150's but still shoot flat and retain enegry down range. just my take. the hard part is not deciding on a rifle or making the shot, its getting a TAG to harvest on of the maginificant sheep or goats.

How about some pics of your billy? We would love to see them!!
 

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