Which of these bullets would you use in a 338RUM?


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Mar 30, 2008
I am looking for a hunting bullet that will be used on elk,moose, caribou, and hopefully not but the charging bear after my kill. LOL. I will be using this bullet for hunting and killing rocks out to a 1000 yards. I like clean and humane kills so I want the bullet that will do the job. So far here are my bullet choices. Keep in mind this may change when the new bergers come out. But for now this is what I am looking at.

225 gr nosler accubond
250 gr nosler accubond
250 gr SMK
300 gr SMK
250 gr lapua scenar

what would you choose? Any I should consider that are not on the list?

I will be running my 338rum very moderatly. I am concerned only with accuracy and not concerned about pushing this case to the max. Thanks guys
For long range shots select a bullet with a BC on the high end that shoots very accurately out of your rifle.

For bear protection, a camp load, or close range shots (whatever you decide is 'close range') use a 225 grain Trophy Bonded Bear Claw. If they still make them like the ones I have used on two different mature boar brown bear on Kodiak Island, they are deadly.

One +1000lb boar simply broadside chest shot was instantly down and dead from 130 yds. This bear was unaware of my presence, so the adrenaline wasn't pumping.

The other boar had already been hit and was making a get-away - fully adrenaline charged. Same shot from about the same distance. The bear was rolled off his feet and never regained all fours - simply center of the ribs. This tells me this bullet was creating a tremendous physiological shock to the animal, sufficient to outright lights-out kill, or disable these bears.

Trying to find a bullet that excels for both close and long range use generally will result in some compromise from the ideal bullet for both extremely different purposes. The long range bullet selection is by far the more critical bullet selection. Just about any premium controlled expansion bullet will be accurate enough for the closer range work, and these bullets are constructed to withstand high velocity impacts associated with these close shots. I simply mention the Trophy Bonded Bear Claw as it proved deadly with both brown bears I hit out of my 338 Imperial Magnum, which is the same as your 338 RUM but with the shoulder shoved forward about 0.050" farther for a little bit more case capacity.
Non-living targets at 1000 yds+ : 300 gr. SMK

Up-close and personal on game: 250 gr. Barnes TSX

Compromise between the two: 250 gr. Nosler AB
I am thinkng about that 300smk. It will do fine on moose and elk??? I am also thinking about the 225 and 250 accubond but I hate their poor BC's
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i would use a good hunting bullets. moose are big animals they arent that hard to kill but there is a lot of moose to got through before the vitals. i had one hunter kill a 40.5 stone ram and a 225inch moose with me in the yukon a few years ago. he uses a custom 338rum that looked like a sendaro with the 225 nosler accubonds. it worked but it could have been better, he shot his ram on a windy and rainy day at 275yrd and his moose at 280yrds a few days later.

the new barnes ttsx would be my choice no guide is going to let you shoot at a game animal at over 400yrd and maybe nothing over 300yrds, i wouldnt let you any way. a good bullet in the right spot will work all the time and the barnes is the right bullet for me, for killing big game.
no guide is going to let you shoot at a game animal at over 400yrd and maybe nothing over 300yrds, i wouldnt let you any way.

Guess I won't be hunting with a guide then. Good thing I don't need one in Alaska - USA.
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Sask_Hunter, Not disagreeing with:

no guide is going to let you shoot at a game animal at over 400yrd and maybe nothing over 300yrds, i wouldnt let you any way.

but, curious as to why especially since for some on here(not me) a 300 or 400 yard shot is a walk in the park?
I'll go ahead and flat out disagree with it. Plenty of guides that will allow one to shoot longer ranges. They may require a proficiency field test. That's fine. But any guide I hunt with will accomodate my hunting preferences rather than force his on me. After all, they're hired to provide a service.

If they won't take my money under my conditions, time to move on.

The only way any of this is relevant to bullet selection is that closer range shots should be taken with a bullet that can kill cleanly at higher velocity impacts. If all shots will be taken at less than 300 yds, then there are plenty of premium, controlled expansion bullets that will do the job nicely.

Fewer bullet choices available that will excell at 1000 yds.
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A profeciency test will almost always tell if one can make the shot. Your guide will take you out and say hit that there rock a 750 yards. You hit it you hunt that far. Pretty easy
Good question, Lots of good answers. I tary over that one every year depending on which tags I draw and what I anticipate my shots to be. If you plan on one bullet to do it all and carry you beyond 1000 yards the 300 smk is the best because of the wind drift and carrying more energy at 1000+ yards to the target than anything else. However the 225 and 250 AB will kill those animals you listed at 1000+ yards and be a better choice if you expect most of your hunting to be inside of 800 or so yards. As your anticipated distance on most of your shots decreases you can get by shooting high quality premium hunting bullets which are the best choice but not the best at 1000+ yards although they will kill game there. But here is the kicker. You mentioned hunting where the big bears are. I also do most of my hunting where the big bears roam. Therefore I like what Phorwath said. I go with a premium hunting bullet that is the most dependable on big bears and will kill my other critters at 1000 yards if I need to. The accubond and barnes tsx are very accurate bullets that will kill game at 1000 yards. You have just got to do a good job on the wind if there is any. They also shoot much flatter allowing me to use my mil dots quickly on game instead of dialing clicks. With a 338 ultramag and any of those bullets you are going to kill stuff. If one of them stood out as much more accurate in my rifle then there you go.
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