Your Favorite Elk Cartridge and Why?

Discussion in 'Elk Hunting' started by RevJim, Apr 10, 2015.

  1. RevJim

    RevJim Well-Known Member

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    Mine is a 22" Mod 700 Classic in 35 Whelen Improved. with it's 1 in 16" twist I can get 2970 with the Barnes 200X and 2950 with the 200 TTSX. ( 58 to 58.5 H322) I also get 2700+ with the Nosler 250PT and R15 and 2400 with the Woodleigh 310 and R15. It replicates the 338 Win with less recoil and blast and makes hitting out to 350 or so fairly easy with the 200X. I've killed elk with the 338 win and 185XLC and the 375 H&H with the Sierra 300BT, plus the 30-06/180 Hornady SP Light Magnum at 2910fps. This 35 WAI is my Baby but what is your favorite and why?
     
  2. HARPERC

    HARPERC Well-Known Member

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    Pick one? Elk are hunted in so many conditions, rain forest, desert, sea level, high country, while I like a good .35 Whelen, I wouldn't take it everywhere. .338 RUM is todays choice if you pin me down to one.
     
  3. Sneaky Apasum

    Sneaky Apasum Well-Known Member

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    Right now it's my 7 STW. If I ever get my hands on one of the bigger .338's, it will probably be that.
     
  4. Dosh

    Dosh Well-Known Member

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    Rev, like HARPERC noted depending on the condition. For the close forested or brushy areas .270 and up, but wide open terrain the .30 cal mags and .338's are what I want to carry. Humanely stop them in their tracks so you don't spend the day looking for them. Found the rotted remains of too many --- shot and stuck with arrows.
     
  5. RevJim

    RevJim Well-Known Member

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    I have my WAI set up with two pillar bedded stocks. A newer CDL wooden one for all around ( and warmer on my hands during late season cow hunts! I had traded it's Classic stock to my gunsmith for some work on a different project) and a Brown Precision High Country synthetic for early/wet and high country (of course! ha!). It's around 7.5# with this one. I keep a Leupold 1.5x5 on it. Shilen trigger. Longest shot I've made with this rifle was with the Barnes 200X at 347 lasered yds on a Black Wildebeast in South Africa. One and done. I too think elk should be hit hard, and often...keeps them out of those god awful canyons! I should add that I had this little rifle braked when I had a neck surgery (back in 2000, no not from recoil! ha) so I tape it to keep snow/mud out. I like this rifle/cartridge because it has less recoil than some lighter 338s I've had, shoots as flat as a couple 300 Winmags I had with 200gr, and kills like a .375 with factory loads...best of all worlds "to me". I have and use other rifles, this one is just my favorite, that's what I'm asking you guys. What is your favorite rifle for elk and what is it chambered in.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2015
  6. seattleman1969

    seattleman1969 Well-Known Member

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    .300 WM good all around cartridge close or out to distance, easy to find cartridges for it, reloading components, rifles, etc... etc...
     
  7. Rick Richard

    Rick Richard Well-Known Member

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    300 WM for me also.
     
  8. Rich Coyle

    Rich Coyle Well-Known Member

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    mark fox,

    What case are you using for your 6.5? What is the water capacity?

    I have a couple wildcats and yours sounds like what I expect from my second one. It is at the 'smith again, but I think when it come home it will be home for good.
     
  9. gspman

    gspman Well-Known Member

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    300WM, 180gn accubonds....good to go, have also used with great success 280 rem with 140 gn accubonds...
    Both are elk hammers, just hit the boiler room. Down they go!
     
  10. Timber338

    Timber338 Well-Known Member

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    Favorite caliber is .338 for elk. Favorite cartridge for elk is a tough one for me to decide on... but if I have to choose I'll go with the RUM.
     
  11. cohunter14

    cohunter14 Well-Known Member

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    Although I agree with a lot of what was said, I have to disagree that energy is not what kills. I think you need a combination of something you can shoot accurately that will expand and penetrate when it hits. The higher the energy that is hitting the animal, the better. Penetration isn't going to do the trick if the bullet simply pencils through your target.

    BTW, running the numbers on that 6.5 you have is pretty impressive!

    For most hunters who aren't shooting long range, my choice for them would probably be something like a 30-06. Good combination of recoil and energy. Personally, I have chosen the 300 RUM. For me, it is the best combination of all of the factors I mentioned considering I don't want to hunt with a brake on my rifle. I think a 300 WIN would also be a solid choice as would Mark's 6.5.
     
  12. cohunter14

    cohunter14 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, shot placement matters. But if you had the choice of a 115 grain bullet from a .243 or a 300 grain .338 hitting in the same spot at the same distance, what would quicker? Or what happens when you do miss on your shot placement and hit a little too far back? I would much rather have more energy being displaced at that time.

    I'm not saying energy is the most important thing, but it definitely is relevant.
     
  13. Buttermilk

    Buttermilk Well-Known Member

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    My Elk cartridge choice would be my 300 RUM or my 30-338WM.

    In my opinion, it's tissue destruction that kills. Destroy the right tissue, and you have a dead animal.

    Energy helps with tissue destruction. More energy usually causes more tissue destruction as long as proper bullets are used.

    However, as mentioned, arrows have little energy compared to rifles but do a nice job of killing without a lot energy because they destroy/damage the correct tissue (ie - lungs).

    A modern gun with the proper bullet can induce massive amounts of tissue destruction thru the transfer of energy.

    So, in my opinion, it's all about tissue destruction.
     
  14. RevJim

    RevJim Well-Known Member

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    "P.O. Akley had proof that T.Whelen was gay." ( sorry revjim at least the akley part of the whelen is good )

    Ha! I never knew that, but hey, God only knows how many gays we've all been around, all our lives. Capstick claimed John "Pondoro" Taylor was gay too. There are some things inthis life I don't want to know about, ha. (I'm glad I had it Ackleyized though, lol)