308 Bullet for Elk


April 17, 2011, 06:45 PM
Hello everyone!

I will be going elk hunting for the first time ever in October. I'm very excited for the trip... but I have a question regarding bullet weight and type.

I will be taking a .308. It isn't possible for me to get a new rifle just for this trip, so a more powerful cartridge is out of the question. A friend who is going on this trip with me shoots a .308 also, so we are looking for a bullet appropriate for elk. We're hoping to find one that shoots well out of both our rifles. We both use 150 gr for whitetail.

For elk, I'm thinking we'll want to step up to at least a 165 gr. Should we look around for some 180s, or will a 165 suffice? What's the preferred .308 bullet weight for elk?

I imagine a bullet that holds together a little better and offers deeper penetration might be better as well. I use Hornady SSTs for whitetail... do these expand too much? What are some other options?

I know a .308 isn't the most powerful cartridge in the world, but it's certainly capable of taking an elk. I'd like to put in some time before we go and choose the best load for our rifles. Thanks!

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April 17, 2011, 07:21 PM
I would choose the federal premuim 180 grain nosler partitions. Should do the trick, keep shot under 250 yards if possible. 165 grains might have a better bc, but would rather have the 180 for elk.

April 17, 2011, 09:18 PM
I've never hunted elk myself, but I would feel most confident with a Barnes TSX for 165gn or if I were dead set on 180, again....Barnes, or Nosler Accubond, or Hornady Interbond.

April 17, 2011, 09:38 PM
Is there a significant advantage to the partitions vs the SSTs? The federal premium loaded with Partitions is very expensive. I'm more than happy to spend the money on them, but only if it's worth it, and would hate to spend that much to find out neither of our rifles likes the stuff.

So my normal go-to for whitetail is Hornady SSTs ... is the consensus that these may expand a bit too quickly for the larger game?

Vern Humphrey
April 17, 2011, 09:44 PM
Is there a significant advantage to the partitions vs the SSTs? The federal premium loaded with Partitions is very expensive. I'm more than happy to spend the money on them, but only if it's worth it, and would hate to spend that much to find out neither of our rifles likes the stuff.
The Nosler Partition Jacket is all I use on elk. Of course my .35 Brown-Whelen is strictly a handloading proposition. I always bring a backup rifle with me -- a pre-64 Winchester Model 70 in .30-06, loaded with 180 grain Nosler Partition Jackets.

Now other bullets may be just as good -- I've never used them on elk, though, so I don't know. I do know a Nosler Partition Jacket (fired from Bigfoot Wallace, my .35 B-W) will break a shoulder, penetrate through the boiler room and break the other shoulder on the way out -- and disappear down-range, because that's exactly what happened with one elk I shot.

You can't beat performance like that.

April 17, 2011, 09:59 PM
Partitions, Accubonds, and TSXs are the kings of penatration. 180gr is better IMHO for thick bodied game. 165s will do the trick though. SSTs are about the perfect deer bullet, but a little soft for deep penatration, remember they were designed for "shock" kills. SST=Super SHOCK Tip, designed for very rapid expansion and max energy dumping. While they will work they would not be my first choice. Just my $0.02. The 308 is plenty for elk, 30-30s have been used very sucessfuly for well over a century now, and the 308 tops it for energy and momentum at all ranges. It is all a matter of shot placement no matter if you are using a 243win or a 375H&H.

April 17, 2011, 10:19 PM
165gr or 180gr will work very well. I would look into Hornady 165gr GMX Superformance or 165gr Interbond Superformance, as I'm a big fan of bonded bullets. But it'll ultimately come down to whatever happens to shoot best out of your rifle.
If you happen to reload, I would also recommend looking into Berger Hunting VLDs in 168gr or 175gr if you will be making longer shots.

April 17, 2011, 10:23 PM
I found some Black Hills-loaded accubonds online. Black Hills is good stuff, right? Who else loads the accubonds?

Who loads the TSXs? I haven't seen any of those.

April 17, 2011, 10:32 PM
Winchester loads the Accubonds I think. I don't keep up with it too much though since I roll my own, and don't hunt with factory ammo.

April 17, 2011, 10:38 PM
Winchester loads the Accubonds I think

Indeed they do!

My friend and I were hoping to get together to shoot this weekend. We have a box of 165 SSTs, so if they shoot well then maybe I'll look into getting some GMXs since the SSTs might be a little fragile for elk. I'm going to try and find a box of 180 gr accubonds or partitions before this weekend as well. I'm thinking they'll be tough to find around here, but we'll see.

Are there any online stores that don't charge an arm and a leg for shipping?

April 18, 2011, 12:50 AM
The SST's would work if they didnt come in contact with the shoulder. But since theres a good chance you'll hit the shoulder, it would be wise to use a thicker jacketed bullet, if not a bonded bullet.

April 18, 2011, 01:16 AM
BARNES TSX and TTSX never fail....


April 18, 2011, 02:36 AM
Some on-line stores to look at....Cheap as dirt...Bud's gun shop ...Discount shooters supply. Saw Federal Premium Nosler Partition .308 180gr. for $25,box of 20. Need to step up, get the best for a big 700lb. big boned elk. These bullets upon impact , the front section usually blows up causing massive internal damage and the copper peels back along side of the rear half of the bullet which stays in tact , GREAT penetration, small exit wound unless of course you blow up bone. Keep your shots under 250 yards, go to the range, shoot a couple groups of 180gr before you go. Good luck

April 18, 2011, 08:33 AM
I will be developing a TSX load for our giant feral hog population in a few weeks, there is no doubt about it, the TSX and TTSX are top shelf killers especaly in high speed smalller caliber rifles where excessive fragmentation would normaly be an issue. I'll take those over GMX anyday due to the bladed configuration, ultra slow motion through ballistic gel shows how wicked that really is. :what:

April 18, 2011, 08:45 AM
if you have a gander mountain nearby,call the gunshop and see if they still have the saturday buy one,second box half off special going on.saves on shipping costs

April 18, 2011, 08:50 AM
I have killed elk with SST's, Partitions. Interbonds, and Trophy Bonded bullets in 165 grain with a 30-06. SST is too thin skinned, and the company will tell you so. The elk I shot with the SST didnt go far, but the bullet didnt penetrate and a second shot was required. Good old Nosler Partition is as good as it gets. Interbond hits hard as well. Trophy bonded didnt seem to expand as much, but did the job very well. I have some acubonds for my 6.5, but havent shot anything with it yet.

April 18, 2011, 08:52 AM
PS I'm not dissing SST's, that is my deer bullit.

April 18, 2011, 12:26 PM
I'm of the opinion that 180 grain Nosler Partition or 165 grain Barnes Triple Shock will both work well out to 300 Yards.

Bear in mind, I'm no ballistician. I actually favor the Barnes bullet, but that's just me. The Nosler Partiction has more energy at longer ranges however. It's the technology of the Barnes' bullets that has me leaning towards it.


April 18, 2011, 01:50 PM
I don't claim to be right, but I have always preferred the slightly better trajectory of the 165 in .308 thinking that it is plenty for elk in either Nosler Partition or Barnes. I have killed them DRT with 150's.

April 18, 2011, 04:20 PM
So much discussion about a simple bullet.
These are all well proven bullets over the years...
-Barnes TSX and now TTSX with close to match grade ballistic coeficients.
-Nosler Partition. Awesome bullets too.
-Sierra Gameking. I use for softer/smaller game.
-180gr Corelockt low bc but great at closer range. Lots of game has fallen to this one inexpensively in rural America.

I have not tried but heard great reports from my buddies on these.
-Swift Sirocco II
-Hornady SST and GMX.
-Nosler E-tip.

I am now working now in an accuracy on the e-tip but in 6mmx45 though.
Whatever you choose stick to one or two good bullets and work your loads and get to know them well. If you reload there is nothing more fun than that. I mostly use Varget for all my hunting loads.


April 18, 2011, 08:22 PM
Nothing on earth wrong with a heavy corelock bullet, many an experenced hunter swear by them, they are in the middle of the expansion/penatration scale, plenty deep enough for genral elk use with 180gr.

April 18, 2011, 08:37 PM
+1 on what 1stmarine said.

Do not feel under gunned with a .308! My grandfather only used a .270 and none of em ever ran away.

I was at Kiowa Creek a year ago and a fellow had dropped a very large cow with a 130 grain Barnes from a 6.5X55.

I personally like the way Nosler's shoot. For my .308 I prefer the 165 grain rounds and a little more fps than the heavier bullets. Elk aint made of steel.

April 18, 2011, 08:54 PM
Elk get their tougher than steel reputation form guys poking at them from cross canyon hitting them in the leg then losing their blood trail after following them for a spell. Stick any decent bullet into the goods and they die. My go to .308 bullet of a .308 Win for elk is the 168Gr TSX. They will punch all the way through a broadside elk at most any reasonable hunting range (300 yards and under).

Several years ago I killed a big old cow with my .30-06 using a 180gr TSX MV of about 2750 FPS. I smacked her almost straight up (About a 60 deg slope) from me at 232 yards. I hit her just behind the shoulder and the bullet blew through her off shoulder breaking the top of the humorus exiting and headed off towards Wyoming. You really can't ask for better performance on elk out of a .308 caliber bullet. I highly recommend Barnes TSX or TTSX when using a .308 caliber on elk.

Most of the other bullets mentioned work just fine too but don't go with SST or other light skinned fast expander they simply limit your shot options to severely. And the way I hunt I make a a lot of snap shots in timber so I require some penetration form my chosen set up.

The elk I shot in 06 described above with my .30-06. That is the exit wound you are seeing in the picture.
My daughter with the same rifle, her rifle now, with her first elk in 2011.

April 18, 2011, 09:31 PM
Thanks all! This thread has been very helpful.

I'm confident in my .308, but I also realize that bullet selection in that caliber may be a little bit more important than in some of the other calibers. I didn't think I'd have a chance to go elk hunting anytime soon, and I'm not sure how soon until I'll be able to go again, so I wanted to make the most of this opportunity. I've never hunted anything larger than mule deer, so I figured a little extra bullet research was in order.

H&H, your pictures are getting me even more pumped to go. October can't get here fast enough :D

I've been (admittedly slowly) setting up to reload. Maybe I should use this trip as an extra push to get things set up and start loading. Do the reloaders here think that's a reasonable goal?

April 18, 2011, 09:36 PM
Do the reloaders here think that's a reasonable goal?

It's never to early. Especially if you are new at reloading. There is a learning curve.

April 18, 2011, 10:01 PM
Reloading is great, I will never go back to factory ammo. My 6.5x55 has become a whole new wepon with an extra 250fps :) it went from a very practical deer rifle to a monster dropping, laser flat shooting, DRT legend. I never had to track anything before with my 139gr Prvi SP factory bullets, but now I would not hesetate for a second to use it on our HUGE feral hogs here in the deep south (600 lbs+!) and the best part is that it is still a mild recoiling, mild mannerd, low noise, easy to shoot rifle. There are a few calibers that gain alot from reloading; 25-06, 300mags, 6.5x55, 270WSM and 7mm rem mag are real standouts, they all can gain 150+fps over factory loadings with really good powders/primers (I love RL22). 308s don't gain quite as much in speed as they do accuracy and versitility. If you get the chance to reload I recomend trying Accubonds, they group really well in every rifle I have tried them in and the steller BC of the bullets combined with the rapid expansion and high weight retention makes them a darn near perfect bullet for all around big game use.

April 18, 2011, 11:18 PM
Everything starts and ends with a bullet, hopefully a good one. The rest is just the means of delivery with proper speed, stabilization, scope, not too much coffe that day...etc... LOL!!!
TSX, Nosler, gameking, and many others... hard to go wrong.
The TSX and TTSX is like runniing a huge drill through the animal. I makes a nasty and consistent cavity. They twitch or jump and just roll over. Nothing has scaped those yet. Consistency is the name of the game.
I think many other bullets can say similar stories. Just try several of the above with chronometer in hand and stick with whatever works best for you and your rifle. With a good high BC bullet you can start slow and end up fast so the .308 win, 30.06 good for most hunts in the USA.
If you want long range and extreme long range you have to step up to magnums and dance the long range tango, training being the most important aspect of it.

April 19, 2011, 12:07 AM
For long range skip the 308 and get a 7mm rem mag or a 270WSM. Both are great though I am starting to really love my WSM. 308 is just too darn slow for 500 yard hunting IMHO. Not saying that it won't hit your target at that range but you are starting to drop out of the ideal expansion range for most modern bullets.

April 19, 2011, 12:15 AM
In deed 7mm some of the best bullets around.
There are very few things that a 200gr bullet pushed by a .308 win mag. cannot do though. I believe the weatherby and RUM supermagnums are overbored so in that case it is best to take the leap to the .338
I guess it depends on how far you want to go. Long range officially starts at 600 yards.
I have taken deer, goat and mule at 740 yards but didn't try beyond.


April 19, 2011, 06:55 AM
A long range shot to me is 300 yards :)

I don't even know where I could shoot paper at 600 yards around here, so I can't see myself making those types of shots anytime soon.

April 19, 2011, 12:00 PM
Why does everybody want to TRY and shoot elk at 500 yards and more? It's a whole heck of a lot more fun to hunt them in dark timber at close range.

The 7mm and the .270 WSM are NOT long range elk rifles IMO. They just don't carry enough stuff to pack the mail way out there on a big bull elk. The most effective LONG range elk rifles start in the 8MM or better yet the big .338's.

I have just seen way to many elk wounded and not recovered with the 7mm long range "look ma no brains!" crowd.

I know, I know the guy who wears the lip stick and eye shadow on "Best of the West" does it every week with a 7MM or a even a .264. That's the movies in the real world 99% of guys who try that stuff screw it up. Ever notice that you seldom if ever see those heroes shooting in the wind? Did you also ever notice that you can't dope wind cross canyon for the most part in the mountain because it changes direction and velocity when it enters canyons and blows over ridges?

I'm not saying it can't be done I'm simply saying that most of you guys (us guys) shouldn't be trying it especially with a pip squeak round like a 7MM or a .270 WSM. If you screw the pooch you want something that is going to leave a nice big exit hole and copious amounts of blood on the ground or if it hits heavy bone will punch through anyway. I've seen this game played too many times on elk with neophyte hunters using their deer rifles and trying to sky punt an elk. It almost never turns out good.

My long range elk rig is a .330 Dakota on M-97 action sporting a 26 " barrel and a 2X12 Burris scope. I am shooting a 225 gr Barnes TTSX or a Hornandy IL at 3,000 FPS +. That is a set up and a round where if had the perfect set and the time and the perfect conditions you can ethically take a 500 Yard + shot on an elk. Of course most guys have never fired anything with that level of recoil so you'd better spend some time behind it and get good with it before taking off to kill Samson at eye squinting range or you'll once again find yourself in the goat column of the goat or hero list.

As a guide and as a hunter I am telling that there is nothing more demoralizing than spending all that time and money to come out here elk hunting to live your dream to fantasize about the moment that special moment when you get to slide your rifle over a dead fall pine, place your cross hairs on that big sorrel colored shoulder and squeeze the trigger. Only to have realized a second later that the shot was way to far and that big old bull humps up and runs off with a leg dangling or a hole in his guts. And guess what? An elk can run straight up a mountain for miles with a leg blown off or a hole in his guts and chances are you ain't going to ever see him again.

Don't let this all to common scenario ruin your long awaited dream hunt. Get within reasonable distance (350 yards max) before pulling the trigger on your elk and don't listen to all of these long range internet heroes or coffee shop experts. I've killed over 30 head of elk and only one has been past 400 yards. The majority inside of 200 yards. Super long range shooting is never necessary with elk you can do it if you want but you can also choose to pass up those shots and work yourself into a better position and a sure deal.

Sorry for the long post but I feel fairly strongly about this subject.

April 19, 2011, 01:45 PM
I have never shot an elk at more than 200 yards. But, I would take a shot at maybe 400 if it was all I could get and I could find a good rest, provided the wind was calm. Of course, the wind being calm almost never happens. Five hundred yards is a little much.

April 19, 2011, 01:57 PM
A 150 TSX should work just fine, and shoot the same as your existing deer loads.

April 19, 2011, 07:44 PM
As a guide and as a hunter I am telling that there is nothing more demoralizing than spending all that time and money to come out here elk hunting to live your dream to fantasize about the moment that special moment when you get to slide your rifle over a dead fall pine, place your cross hairs on that big sorrel colored shoulder and squeeze the trigger. Only to have realized a second later that the shot was way to far and that big old bull humps up and runs off with a leg dangling or a hole in his guts. And guess what? An elk can run straight up a mountain for miles with a leg blown off or a hole in his guts and chances are you ain't going to ever see him again.

That situation is the last thing I want, and hence why I asked this question. I can't comment on the specific calibers you mentioned, because I frankly don't know much about long distance hunting, especially for elk. I do most of my hunting in the middle of the woods, where it's tough to get even a 100 yard shot. Rest assured that I won't be taking any shots farther than 300 yards, and even at 300 yards I need to get in some significant range time between now and then. I've hunted mulies and antelope in WY several times, so I'm capable of taking some long (by my standards) shots, but elk is in a different league.

Super long range shooting is never necessary with elk you can do it if you want but you can also choose to pass up those shots and work yourself into a better position and a sure deal

That's good to hear. That is my preferred method to be honest. I enjoy the strategy involved in gaining a better position before taking a shot. It's why I love hunting in WY so much. It's difficult to do that with whitetails where I hunt.

This is my first guided hunt. I hadn't thought about it before, but I think I'm a bit apprehensive about that. I guess I have to keep in mind that this is MY hunt, and if the guide says shoot and I don't think I can, then I don't take the shot. Something I haven't had to do in the past.

April 19, 2011, 08:03 PM
Wise words. When I heard folks looking for long range I recommend preparing a big budget and advice that 1 out of a 10 hunts where the average range is 100-200 yards anyway they might be presented with just one opportunity to take a long shot and they will have to learn to let it go and move closer.
The most important single aspect of the equation is not the rifle, nor the ammunition, nor the gear (expensive too) nor the shooter but the training and the experience hunting.

Years of training can only provide the confidence to take a long shot and then, and learning with the best sometimes, even then, you might have to let it go if you know how to read the wind, and it looks that you know how to.
I don't see any 4 engine aircraft pilot certification of 4000 hours flying given in a 4hrs certification.

Those that are the real hunters, the ones that when everybody is saying take the shot, they open the action and say NO, lets move closer.

Don't fear for the poor elk as most of the guys talking long range online will not even touch them in the gut or the quarters. I do long range hunting because is something I got trained for by the military. Would I go and start shooting everything that moves at long range? Absolutely not! If there is one single doubt in my mind that I am not going to hit the target I don't take the shot. I have missed in the past, yes... but only in training and with paper and steel targets.


April 19, 2011, 10:39 PM
I do not agree that the 7mm rem or 270WSM is not enough to drop an elk with at long range. I do agree that 90+% of all hunters are not a good enough shot to take anything past 400 yards no matter what the caliber. My 7mm rem and 270 WSM carry well over the 1200 ft lbs recomended at 500 yards (about 1600 with my handloads) Even my mild 6.5x55 carries 1300+ @500, not that I would cut it that close no matter how good a shot I am.

April 19, 2011, 11:40 PM
I agree, nothing wrong with a 175gr 7mm bullet in expert hands but I think the In 7mm the assortment is not so wide but we have very good bullets in some of those models mentioned before.
.308 is what is wanted here.


April 20, 2011, 12:52 AM
I do not agree that the 7mm rem or 270WSM is not enough to drop an elk with at long range.

Of course they will. But they reduce your margin for error as they are the extreme minimum of what you should be using for that application on elk. What aggravates me about the 7MM crowd is they tend to be the guys who either trade in grand pappy's .30-06 or the new guy who reads a lot and wants a "long range" rifle. They go buy a fancy new 7MM and think that they can magically shoot at any range and that somehow if the round connects it will instantly blow any and all animals off their feet due the all powerful energy aura created by the mythical 7MM round.

There seem to be two types of 7MM shooters. Bubbas and riflemen and the bubbas outnumber the riflemen about 10 to 1. When I was guiding on a regular basis I always cringed when a client would start "informing" me about the virtues of his new 7MM on the way up the hill. It was almost always a fiasco with those guys. There are still to this day plenty of old time guides in elk country who will not allow a 7MM in camp. Back in the day the 7MM developed a reputation as being wounding cartridge and it has stuck. Heck I have a buddy who hunted the Jicarilla Apache reservation for elk last year. Guess what, they wouldn't allow him to use his 7MM on his elk hunt they've had to many wounded elk with that round.

1st Marine has it right, a 175 gr bullet in expert hands is decent elk medicine. The problem is neophytes always want more speed and use soft 140 gr deer bullets falsely thinking that the additional MV adds up to better long range performance. We all know that the 175 is the round that carries the mail down range but try convincing Mr. 7MM velocity freak of that little ditty.

As 1st Marine also said it's a lot less about the machine and a lot more about the mans training.

April 20, 2011, 02:23 AM
Know your game, know your rifle, know your bullet, and know your aim. My cousin failed to dorp a 120lbs whitetail with a 30-06 at close range. He did blow a leg off it. That does not make the 06 a poor choice for deer it just makes him a bad shot (from a stabe rest no less). Those of us that understand the use of proper bullets, and understand that proper shot placement trumps power everytime don't need huge cannons. I leave my magnums at home 90+% of the time because I am deadly accurate with my "puney" 6.5x55 and it has never let me down. I could not imagine someone NOT putting an elk down with somthing as powerful as a 7mm rem mag unless they were as bad of a shot as my cousin. I find it intresting that just a genaration ago the 30-30, 6.5x55, 30-06, and 270 win were go to rifles for elk now we all need 338 win mags. Have they grown armor or are we just becoming really poor hunters?
The 257 Roberts used to be a good deer rifle, but I guess they grew armor too. Seems like the 270 is the minimum caliber now. Someone needs to tell my dad because he still hunts with a 243! LOL dad can still pop turtle heads in the middle of the lake with his model 70, putting a 100gr corelock through a deers heart is a chip shot, and it still kills them just as dead as it did 40 years ago.

April 20, 2011, 12:04 PM
Nothing wrong with the .243 win neither, or a good 6.5mm load.
30.06 and 308WIN are also some of the most versatile loads ever devised for the average American hunter. So one could say if you have any of those calibers rarely will need anything else but we like our toys and we have to get at least a couple of them so we can enjoy exchanging our experiences with family and friends that are also firearm enthusiasts.

I could hunt all day with a .224 if they allowed everywhere or a .243 TSX bullet that has been proven the devastation at moderate ranges no matter what grain and caliber. Just like nosler, SGK, corelockts, ...you call it.

Not long ago people hunted with black powder lever action thumpers that delivered 700ft/lbs at 100 yards and filled out the dinner table with meat and potatos for decades.
Now some think that other popular loadings like our veteran grandpa 30'06 is not enough for anything walking in this continent? No sense. People that know hunting and firearms know better than that.

I guess we can call that hunter killing a deer at 250 yards with the 243 win a small surgical kill (Dead anyway) and the guy with the .338 RUM missing the same target at the same range a huge messy miss.

We know a .308 or .338 RUM can do much more specially at extreme long range but that alone cannot do squad and it is the less important thing of the whole equation "to deliver the mail". (I like that expression from you)

I have several friends and cousins just like yours, I encourage them to go play with air rifles/22LR and paper targets. It is plenty for the type of fulfillment they are looking for.


April 20, 2011, 12:47 PM
I would encourage anyone to learn to shoot by practicing on much smaller targets, I learned by cleaning out our nusence turtle population many years ago with a 22LR. If you can consistantly hit a 1"-2" target at 50-100 yards from a boat you are more then ready to take on deer. My friend Bryan is a 300 mag fanatic, he always talks smack about my little 6.5x55, yet both times I have managed to drag him to the shooting range he is all over the place, somtimes not even keeping his shots on the 12"x12" paper at 100 yards off a benchrest! Needless to say I don't take him hunting with me. "hunters" like that could give a 375H&H a bad name, the poor 7mm rem mag don't stand a chance LOL

April 20, 2011, 01:12 PM
I am a little curious why a 7 Remington magnum is thrown in to the bubba group. I guess because it has a belt. In reality it doesn't recoil any worse than a 30-06 as I can feel.

This anti-magnum stuff is just so in style.

April 20, 2011, 01:30 PM
No anti magnum or anti nothing. It was just used as an example, to compare little vs. big. It is a great casing like many others. Just totally unnecessary at the average range but great for other purposes that's all.
Sorry for any confusion on my part.

April 20, 2011, 01:38 PM
I think it just has more to do with the fact that the hype surounding the 7mag lured many inexperneced shooters to buy them. The old guys know their old 06 is more then enough so they were not the first in line to get on the magnum bandwagon. More of a phsycological thing then a ballistic thing IMHO.

April 20, 2011, 03:11 PM
I think it just has more to do with the fact that the hype surounding the 7mag lured many inexperneced shooters to buy them. The old guys know their old 06 is more then enough so they were not the first in line to get on the magnum bandwagon. More of a phsycological thing then a ballistic thing IMHO.

BINGO! Kachok hit it right on the head.

In some circles the 7MM has developed a horrible yet undeserved reputation.

Lets break down what a 7MM really gives you over the plain old .30-06. I'll let you guys go grab your own reloading manuals and ballistics charts. But I'll summarize with comparable SD and BC the 7MM gives you a bit flatter trajectory hits with about the same energy and does so with a bullet that has slightly less frontal area and diameter.

So what you actually gain with a 7MM over a .30-06 is about 50 yards more maximum point blank range with no discernible increase in killing power.

Now here's the rub many enthusiastic yet inexperienced guys buy into the hype, go get a 7MM and have an inflated and overly confident opinion of what it is capable of, then try to make these ultra long shots on elk missing or wounding. There tends to be a bad case of over confidence associated to the 7MM and so many hunters.

Meanwhile you get the old timers shooting old reliable in a .270 or an 06 or a .257 Bob, whatever, who simply don't take shots that they aren't sure about making and they tend to cleanly kill way elk than the your average once a year bubba with all the cool tools on his back.

It reminds me of Eric Hartman The top scoring fighter ace of WWII with 352 enemy kills. He was asked once what his secret was to being such a fine aerial marksman. His reply was that he wasn't good shot at all he simply never pulled the trigger unless he was close enough to assure a kill. In his book he stated that he like to close to within 50 meters before he would fire on his enemy. So much like a very good hunter, shooting was secondary to his expert maneuvering and stalking skills.

As Col Jeff Cooper said if you can get closer, GET closer, if you can get more steady, GET more steady.

If a guy wants to put in the time and training to get to where he knows how to shoot long range and he has the knowledge when to pull the trigger and when to let it pass I have no problem with that at all. Go for it, but know when to say when. Most hunters do not have the discipline or experience to know when to not pull the trigger.

Experience comes from bad judgment but you let be the other guys bad judgment and learn from their mistakes. I pulled an amateur boneheaded mistake last year during deer season. It happens!;)


Now that I am thinking about it the longest range one shot kill I've ever seen on an elk was in 1982 or 1983 up in the Rio Costillo. Long before Range finders were available to the general public. It was my hunting mentor Bob Ward (RIP buddy) shooting his beloved .270 Weatherby and a 150 gr Partition. He had one of those old Redfield wide views with the stadia ranging lines in it. I need to go back to the spot and laser it, but the lines told him to hold for 600 yards and he killed a big dry cow with the first shot. I've seen him make several other one shot kills at beyond 500 yards with that old rifle too.

Bob was an artist with his .270 Roy and had taken two grand slams with it. Killed moose and grizz with it, had hunted just about everything there was to hunt in Africa with it including a huge Bongo back in 1984. It goes back to time and familiarity with the rifle. Bob had been a PH in Rhodesia and I know had operated with the militia during the war. Whether or not he did any long range rifle training with the Rhodesian military is now lost to history but I'd guess that he did. He knew quite a bit about long range shooting, wind doping, mirage, positions, breath control, ranging, ETC.

April 20, 2011, 10:22 PM
I thought this thread was about .308 bullets for elk?

April 20, 2011, 11:26 PM
Here is a ballistics chart I pulled with my data and formulas comparing the .30.06 with 7mmRM.
To be fair I used the best bullets in each caliber from the same maker and model in this case BARNES TTSX. Both great meat getters.
If one knows how to manage the higher parabola the 30.06 retains more energy past the 200 yards and bucks the wind better.
For flatter shooting the 7mm is a great round.


I agree with shaggy430
There is good information about .308 but we can also discuss other things that might be educational for everyone.
You can take the Elk with confidence with this .308 round.

April 20, 2011, 11:52 PM
Like I said the 7MM has about 50 yards further Maximum point plank range. Thanks for posting that it graphically shows what I'm talking about. The whole point is most guys shouldn't be shooting past 300 yards on game so it's simply a case of preoccupation with inconsequential increments beyond that number.

1stMArine I am assuming that you are comparing a 160gr 7MM to a 200 gr .30-06? It would be helpful for everybody if you'd include that and the S.D. and the B.C. of both bullets.

Moving back to the OP your .308 will be fine just don't push your range beyond what you are comfortable with.

Most folks don't have any idea what maximum point blank range actually means. This is a good explanation, my apologies to you folks who are well versed in ballistics terminology.


April 21, 2011, 12:24 AM
H&H hunter. Wise words.
The values are in the header of the chart.
I selected the rows here.. I also added another chart with the new Hornady's superperformance Ammo and their A-max 178gr using their published data. This has not been verified. I was going to go today to get a few pounds of this magic stuff but I couldn't so I will go tomorrow and start preparing a few loads for the weekend if the weather cooperates. I love hornady's stuff but also got many primers blown off with their match brand new loads. Some like it hot!
Anyway the superperformance load below even if only used for a hot hunting round is also pretty flat.


Of course the 7mm can benefit from the Hornady's new good stuff too but I don't see the point. IMHO with both the venerable 30.06 and .308Win you have mo powa that you need at average/moderate ranges for elk unless you want to kill 3 cows in a row.

This is a new system that I am working on this weekend if the weather cooperates and in case anyone is interested in info about a nice .308win...


April 21, 2011, 01:26 AM
.308 bullets for elk...

I'd use the following:

165gr or 180gr bonded bullet or monolithic (TSX, GMX, etc.)

Nosler Partition or Accubond
Hornady Interbond or GMX
Barnes TSX or TTSX
Trophy bonded bear claw
Swift A-Frame

With my 30-06, I'd personally go with a 180gr bonded or 165gr monolithic solid. With that .308, I'd take a hard look at the GMX or TSX/TTSX in 165/168gr.

April 21, 2011, 02:23 AM
Long range shooting is a great skill to have, being able to stalk within 75 yards of your game is an even greater skill to have.

April 21, 2011, 10:07 AM
I agree, marksmanship is just one of many aspects of hunting. If you can get so close that you can kill it with your knife, that is a true hunter! LOL!


April 21, 2011, 03:08 PM
I don't know that skill is all of it. I have spent most of the time over the past almost 30 years bow hunting for elk. And, I have been within 50 to 100 yards of several nice herd bulls. I was within 10 yards of one, and 30 to 40 of several more. But, things change when rifle season starts. Anybody who thinks that sometimes 400 to 500 yards isn't the best you are going to get if you get anything at all has never done that much of it. It's not so much that you can't get there without being detected, it's that you can't get there at all in any reasonable time to expect the elk to still be in the same neighborhood. A couple of years ago I closed 1000 yards on one and killed him at about 100 yards. Luck was on my side as far as the terrain went. Not always that way. If I can't get within 300 yards at the most I'll just wait until next year. But, a man that can shoot well at 400 to 500 yards is welcome to take the shot as far as I'm concerned.

I think that I am going to buy a Kimber 84M Montana in 308 to take this year. Only weighs 5 1/2 pounds or so. I'm tired of hauling around a 10 pound rifle. If nothing chages my mind I will be shooting 165 grain Partitions. They have always worked for me in the past. It would be a really weird circumstance where you could tell the 165's from the 180's in the dead elk. IMO anyway.

April 21, 2011, 07:46 PM
You are 100% right, things change when the rifle folks come out. Things also changed a lot everywhere in the last 15-20 years. I personally like the solitude and hunt now mostly in private land ore remote areas whatever the price. I cannot take it mixing a unique experience with some of the goons we find out there. I could do it but I don't. It is unfortunate as there are many still around with deep passion, dedication and respect for the mother nature and the land and probably just a few that ruing the experience and the well earned reputation of true hunters.
I have had big game on my sights w/o a doubt that that animal had to come down and had the animal look at me and had to let it go. I could see in my head that animal dropping but sometimes the moment was so beautiful that I though why to ruin this with a hunt that is so easy.
I would never preach long range as something cool like some are portraying right now. Instead we have to approach with the most respect, considering our true capabilities and treat the land and the animals as a gift from god, that is what they are. There is no much to a 500-600 yards shot, anyone with an accurate system and give that they get proper training can eventually do it. Getting within 10-20 feet of a wild beast, that is a different story.
My next hunt I want to go after a big bear in Alaska and after talking to some experienced folks over there I have decided to do it close if I can with my 16" Saiga .308 or my 45/70 lever action both open sights and leave the long guns at home. That would make it more fulfilling for me I think.
I am planning .308 TSX as they never failed me not even once but I think the partitions will give the same or similar results. I have used them too in the past with great results. And I know there are other good bullets out there. I am testing the ballistics of some new e-tips right now and Hornady as well. Equipment these days, not only meets but exceeds the needs in most of the situations expected by the average American hunter.


April 21, 2011, 08:26 PM
My next hunt I want to go after a big bear in Alaska and after talking to some experienced folks over there I have decided to do it close if I can with my 16" Saiga .308 or my 45/70 lever action both open sights and leave the long guns at home. That would make it more fulfilling for me I think.

Make sure and take lots of pictures. That will be a fantastic experience no matter what the weapon choice. If you want a big bear give Phil Shoemaker a call he's the go to guy for a big trophy brown bear.


April 21, 2011, 08:31 PM

I've taken many elk with my .308 carbine. Longest shot was approx 225 yards or so. None got away. Plan to shoot twice into the chest organs for a quick kill. I've had excellent luck with plain 180 grain soft tip ammo by FEDERAL. But Premium bullets should not be ignored.

Don't make the mistake made by nearly every new elk hunter: shoot once and watch open mouthed as the animal gallops away. Doesn't matter if a magnum rifle is used, either. Elk are tough. Plan to shoot twice or more quickly to put the animal down. That's an advantage of hunting with .308 rifle: the recoil is moderate so you can cycle the action and get a second or third shot off quickly and accurately.

Good hunting to you.


Vern Humphrey
April 22, 2011, 07:13 AM
If I can't get within 300 yards at the most I'll just wait until next year. But, a man that can shoot well at 400 to 500 yards is welcome to take the shot as far as I'm concerned.
The problem is too many men who can't shoot well at 100 yards are willing to take 500 yard shots.

April 22, 2011, 08:50 AM
I'm going to buck the trend here.
Since you're already using a 150gr bullet, stick with the 150gr.

Use the Nosler 150gr Partition.

My younger brother lives in Nevada and is able to hunt there, Colorado, and Utah as it's just a few hours down the interstate to places he has access to.

He's used his pre-'64 Winchester M70 "Feather-weight" in .308 sucessfully many times. He's taken pronghorn antelope, mule deer, elk, white-tails, even feral pigs.

He uses one load; a handload of H4895 in Winchester cases, Federal 210 primers, and The Nosler 150gr Partition. It chrono's 2,900fps so he's not "handicaped" by not using a '06....

He's yet to recover a bullet!

But, he IS a "HUNTER", not a "shooter". I've watched him from a distance stalk a fork-horn white tail. It took him 30min to cover less than 100yds. His shot was from 40yds! He could have shot from 150, but he wanted to "see how close he could get".

He also hunts with a muzzle-loader. But, within 300yds any elk is in grave danger..... He won't shoot beyond 300yds. He has the capability to shoot "miles" living in Nevada. He says the wind is just to un-certain beyond 300yds, so "why bother" is his answer.

You probably won't even have to change your zero if you stick with the 150gr Nosler Partition. The difference in the penetration between a 150 and 180 is perhaps 2-3" at most.

Personnaly, I use a bigger bullet..... a 200gr or 210 from a .338/06 or .338Marlin Express. But, I'm more a "shooter" than a hunter. But, I do "Shoot" a lot of game.
I'm headed back to Wyoming. Haven't heard the results from the Antelope and Mule deer draws, but I did get a State-wide "Any" Elk tag.........

FWIW: my best friend used my Rem. M7 in 7mm08 in '05 to take a beautiful 6x6 bull in Colorado. He did shoot it 4 times, but three 140gr Nosler Partitons completely penetrated the heart/lungs and exited with golf-ball size holes. The 4th shot was a Sierra 140gr "Pro-hunter", flat-base soft-point. He wasn't supposed to use it, but he did break both shoulder's and bullet stayed just under the hide on the off-side. (ammo shoots the same as the Nosler- they were for practice and checking zero...) The guide was skeptacle of him using such a "small" gun. After seeing the results, tried to buy the rifle off of him!

Stick with what you have and use it with confidence. BTW, a well placed SST will do the job, but might not penetrate sufficiently on a less than optimum shot placement. Hence, my reason for using the Partiton's.
They just work..........

April 22, 2011, 10:58 PM
I stopped by a couple of shops today. The first was a local store. I told the guy working that I was going out for elk later this year, and wanted to get something a little more solid for my .308. We discussed ammo a little bit, but they didn't have anything I was really looking for. He seemed less concerned about bullet construction and more concerned with bullet weight and velocity. He showed me a box of Federal Fusion in 180 gr. I don't know much of anything about the bullets on the Fusion ammo, so I said no thanks, and that I'd have to look into them a little more. Really nice guy, but he did try selling me a new rifle while I was there.. first a .257 Mag and then a .30-06. I don't think either would give a whole lot more performance than my .308 at any reasonable distance.

I was out of town later this evening and was near a Gander Mtn, so I thought I'd stop by there to see what they offered. I found some Federals loaded with a 165 gr Barnes TSX, so I picked up a box of those (holy $$$!). They also had the 180 gr Fusions there. I looked a little closer at the box, and noticed the muzzle velocity on the Fusions was slightly higher than the 165 gr Barnes. I also noticed that the jacket is "fused"... not really sure what that means and how that compares to a bonded core, but they were relatively cheap so I figured what the heck, I'll grab a box and do the bullet research later.

So I have a couple of boxes for shooting tomorrow, so we'll see how things go. Two questions though:

I was hoping to find the tipped TSX bullets. The physics behind expansion with a polymer tip makes sense to me. A regular TSX, not so much. Is there a big advantage to the tipped version? Any reason to bend over backwards to find those rather than the regular TSXs?

What about that Fusion bullet? Can anyone compare the construction against some other bullets? Is it comparable to a SST or will it hold together a little better? I figured, at the very least, I have another box that would be suitable for whitetail (and some more brass!)


April 22, 2011, 11:04 PM
As a side note, what the heck formula is Federal using to calculate energy? I'm no physicist, but the only formula for energy I know is energy=mv^2. So then, make sense of this. Here are the numbers printed on their boxes for 300 yards:

180 gr Fusion, 2130 fps, 1400 ft-lbs of energy
165 gr Barnes, 1990 fps, 1455 ft-lbs of energy

So how can the Barnes (slower & lighter) have more energy than the Fusion (faster & heavier)... ?

EDIT: I took a look at Fusion's online velocity and energy charts for the 180 gr load. They don't match what's printed on the box at all. What's printed on the box is the velocity of the 165 gr Fusion load. The energies printed for muzzle, 100 yd, and 200 yd are the energies for their 165 gr load. The energy printed for 300 yd is the 400 yd energy of the 165 gr load, and the energy printed for 400 yd is the energy of their 165 gr load at 500 yd. I don't know what it is they're doing over there, but they should stop letting Brock Lesnar fill in the ballistics information.

April 22, 2011, 11:17 PM
It's the same formula that the TKO guys use. Don't expect it to make sence in the real world :)

April 22, 2011, 11:20 PM
High the TSX and TTSX work the same that is by hydrostatic pressure. They peel back in one piece "Always" (consistency) and then the four petals like razor blades spinning very fast is like running high power drill on the animal all the way through. They cannot stand the shock, they simply twitch or buck once or twice and roll over.
The advantage of the new Tipped ones is that has a higher ballistic coefficient and the tip starts the expansion but the principal is the same, Copper solid bullets that stay in one piece through flush and bone and work as above. The TSX is a classic that has been very reliable and are widely used world wide not just in the US but very popular Australia, Europe and African Safaris for all sort of game. No matter what grain or caliber the TSX/TTSX design is devastating.


The fusion is a way to use shorter bullets and still maintain the integrity of the bullet by creating a fusion where the jacket is bonded to the lead core using electrochemical gilding methods. These bullets have a perfect center of gravity and low BC and are specially designed for deer. They also stay together as soon as they do not hit heavy bone/game so they are ideal for a softer game like deer.


April 22, 2011, 11:39 PM
are specially designed for deer.

Thanks for the info... looking at their site, "whitetail" and "deer" is all over the place. And I've run across that quite a bit in my Googling the past few minutes.

Looks like I have another box of ammo for this deer season :D

April 22, 2011, 11:46 PM
No prob. I also put a couple of pics of two .308win loads with the TSX in post nr 12.... http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=7251877&postcount=12

April 22, 2011, 11:47 PM
Bullet construction has nothing to do with KE, just weight and speed counts there. There are scientific formulas for such things. TSX bullets are amazing. I plan on developing some handloads for them this year. Mind you my BTs and SSTs perform fine, but the TSX promises to be just as lethal with less meat damage. There seems to be a great deal of truth to their blade design. It does not really cut as much as it focuses then energy to stretch tissue beyond it's ability to bouce back thus creating a wounderful tearing effect that extends outward almost as far as bullet fragmentation while retaining nearly 100% of it's weight and driving much deeper.
TSX bullets have really improved the performance of high speed, small caliber lighter bullets more then anything. 80gr 243s were OK on deer in the past, now they are stone cold killers with full penetration being the rule rather then the exception. The differnece for heavier slower bullets seems to be less dramatic since penatration never has been much of an issue for them, but the "spiral of death" is still noticable and very effective. TSX and Accubond are my #1 recomendations for anything tougher or larger then mulies.

April 22, 2011, 11:50 PM
Good stuff. I don't think I've read a single bad thing about the TSXs. If my rifle likes them then I think my search is over.

My understanding is the non-lead bullets are a bit longer than their leaded counterparts. Any issues with case capacity on your TSX 180s?

April 23, 2011, 12:04 AM
They have to be longer. They are copper only but no issues. Might loose a little of speed but then they have a very good Ballistic coefficient so they can start slower and end up faster.
Because they are so good you can even drop a caliber and/or grain w/o loosing effectiveness.

I also hunt with the .223 75gr and 6mm 85 grain TSX and deer drop like hit by lightning so imagine a 168gr in .308! They are expensive for a reason but in the end are cheap as you only need one.

Here they are too in the line up....

If you reload, find out about the OAL that your rifle allows and you can seat a little longer w/o pressing against the lands. Leave at least 0.010 margin. Also can use the first or second groove as cannelure. I use a very light factory LEE crimp in all my hunting bullets for both the bolt and AR. Make sure you visually careful inspect each load and cycle them through the action before the hunt. Safety on first please.

There are other great bullets out there but this is a classic and a must. Now I am testing Nosler E-tip (Solid) and Swift Sirocco II for ballistics.


April 23, 2011, 12:20 AM
I've asked this question before,
but what difference is there between a 7.62 x 54r, & a .308?

the bullet diameter is the same, the bullets are about the same weight in grains.(7.62 x 54 bullet ranges from 150 - 218 grains)
7.62x54 uses a rimmed cartidge, and is reportedly more powerful than a .308, which is rimless. the bullets appear to be similiar in size.

I had thought of using this cartridge for elk at one time, had decided to use the .270, but this thread has gotten me re-thinking a bit.
Forgive me for taking this thread in a different direction, but it's been nagging me a bit.

April 23, 2011, 12:42 AM
No problem. I like this thread.
The .308Winchester is virtually the same as the 7.62x51 which is the official NATO round.
The 7.62x54r is the .308win of the communist world during the cold war.
The 7.62x54r is a tad longer and rimmed but virtually very similar. The problem is that the 7.62x54r in military version is mostly metal cases and metal core whereas the7.62x51(.308win) is brass with a huge array of possibilities and widely available brass. The 7.62x54r is not more powerful, it is actually a lower pressure case, so the .308 win can be also pumped up and loaded with 180gr and even 210gr loads but like the russian then it is not going to be very flat shooting.
I am not a 7.62x54r expert but the .308win I shot a lot in the service and then as a veteran for almost 30 years and I can assure you it is a very reliable/consistent round. It is standard issue in NATO and here to stay for a long time. Very forgiving for re loaders and is cheaper than the 7.62x54r if you reload. Also the options of high quality modern rifles is amazing. Probably the biggest assortment of options and very popular around the world where is legal. Where is not legal the people use the cartridges based in the same case that is the .243 winchester, 7mm.08 that are also huge world wide along with the 30.06. The .338 federal is also based on the .308Win case and there are also great factory loadings in 6.5mm and other calibers based on the same case. Same thing applies to .30.06. The reason they are popular and they have been proven through the years.
Those loads are manufactured here and will never be sortages of loads and brass. The others, we do not know what the future will bring.
If it was me, based on the selection on the .308 caliber department I would keep it simple with a nice .308 winchester or .30.06. It might be popular and thefore not exciting and neck turners but get the job done well and better than many other cool offerings. Everyone should have one of those if not both.
Keep it simple.
Also when extra punch is needed look at the speed and energy of these new loads. They don't tell but you need long barrels as they are slow burning. I was playing with some of this new ball powder today and I need to go longer. In any case more than plenty for anything here in America.



These will cover 99% of the situations of the average American hunter.
More speed, more grain than 168, 180... totally unnecessary.


April 23, 2011, 07:47 AM
Good info in this thread. I had tried the Barnes original X bullets but found they did not open sometimes on deer and left about the same size exit as entrance. I take it the new versions have solved that. I'll give them another try.

April 23, 2011, 08:04 AM
One other key difference. Our 7.62 mesures out to aprox .308" while the Russian 7.62 has an aprox .311" bore. Close but still require differnent bullets for handloading. The British 303 Enfield has the same bore as the Russian.

April 23, 2011, 09:38 AM
Good point. The .308 will run in the russian bore but then you loose performance, that is what some reloaders do but more to play with exotic rifles like the mossin or dragunovs that can be bought dirt cheap and are nice for collectors. The dragunov is actually a very accurate and reliable rifle with even surplus loads but less than politically correct and might be ilegal for hunting with it in America. If one likes an autoloader that is reliable then get a saiga in .308win. Even the engineers in the russian AK plant of Izmash have attributed the accuracy to the western ammunition and acknowledged the accuracy improvements in their AK based systems that are super reliable to the NATO loads. .233Rem and .308win.
The other thing is that the russian loads are metal and berdan primed so they cannot be reloaded. Many that are brass from Europe are also berdan and only a small marginal amount are brass and boxer primer, not cheaper than the .308 that is less expensive to reload and the .308 probably the biggest bullet department with many options from varmint, deer, military, and match and big game hunting.


April 23, 2011, 09:51 AM
I don't own any, but aren't 7.62x54r-chambered rifles generally on the heavy side? It's something worth thinking about when you're talking about going hunting with it.

April 23, 2011, 10:52 AM
yes they are on the heavy side. MAny they are relics from the 1940's.
And Dragunovs are also collectors stuff these days. I am also a collector of AK based systems myself but not the really old stuff.

April 23, 2011, 10:13 PM
There is nothing the 7.62x54 will do that a 30-06 will not. The American .30 cal also enjoys a larger selection of bullets, and a greater selection of rifles. While the Russian rifles are OK I feel that an American made rifle in 30-06 is better in every mesurable way. That said I would never dream of trading my Finnish made 6.5x55 for either one of them :) The 6.5x55 has been dropping trophy elk and moose long before the newfangle 30-06 or 30-30 was ever dreamed up. Despite being 120 years old it still enjoys amongst the best downrange ballistics/accuracy of any rifle caliber. BC and SD are out of this world. My 140gr hunting bullet has a .612 BC!!

April 23, 2011, 11:04 PM
6.5x55 great round too. Even the .260 Remington that is very similar in terms of ballistics (again, from the .308 win case) will work in short action rifles and obviously there is nothing wrong neither with a nice 140gr 6.5 bullet at good speed.

A friend of mine shot a bear in the neck with a 50BMG and he ruined the trophy as the head almost totally separated from the body so more times than not, less is more.

Even DPMS has been selling their AR-10 based platform in all those short action including .308win, 243win, .260reminton, and .338 federal all work with the same magazines and everything as the parent case is the .308Win.

Also have a huge array of great performance in Savage, Remington, etc.. bolt actions in any of those calibers and also in the long action with the venerable 30.06.

Kachok is right, the 30.06 will do anything you need it to do and some of its derivations as the .280 reminton and the great 270Winchester.
The .308 Win and some of its offspring too, so personally I would stay away from the Russian stuff. Later if you want something for playing and shooting a surplus rifle with surplus ammo great, not for serious purpose including serious hunting.
You also have great .308win surplus from the 90's that looks like brand new that you can use for practicing and will not be corrosive and in some cases might be able to reuse great brass. The 30.06 was replaced by the .308win both military calibers very popular and very capable. The 308win is the official NATO round and will be for many years to come so something to consider too. Manufacturing demand and volume is what brings the cost of shooting down. I can get 2,000 .308 150 FMJ military surplus bullets for $160 for practice. I also got 2K rounds of 7.62x51(.308win) PMC for $700 and can reuse great brass for target and great hunting rounds.

Keep it simple .308 caliber (along with .224 and 6mm) is the biggest bullet department there is for anything you would possibly need in this continent.


Vern Humphrey
April 24, 2011, 07:21 AM
I have to agree, the 6.5 is a great cartridge. Mine is a Model 96 sporterized by Kimber.

But the .30-06 is my go-to rifle.

April 24, 2011, 09:08 AM
The 260Rem with a 1:8 twist will do anything my 6.5x55 will in barrels 22" or shorter (and vice versa). The old Mauser round has a slightly higher case capasity so it can get a few more fps out of longer barrels, but uses a Muser length action with is slightly longer then a short action and shorter then a long action. That is the main advantage of the 260, having a standard action length and standard bolt face (6.5x55 is slightly larger) the 260 is more compatable with standard production rifles.
The next big contest is going to be the 260 vs the 6.5Creedmore. Savage has joined Ruger in chambering the Creedmore in their rifles. It seemes that the Creedmore is perferd by handloaders and match shooters although I cannot explain why since I have never shot or handloaded one.

April 24, 2011, 10:05 AM
I have talked to several people that shot the creedmore and everyone is saying the same... why? Some of these folks are very experienced shooters and reloaders.
We already have wonderful loads like the 6.5x55, the 260rem, the super accurate 6.5x47 lapua, 6.5 mm Remington Magnum that is a roaring beast, the grendel that is milder but great for those that like the AR-15 and even the 6.5-06 that can be made of 30.06 cases cheaply.
The creedmore offers nothing new that cannot be found in any of those already popular cases so, go figure.

April 24, 2011, 10:10 AM
...I forgot and the .264 winchester magnum if you want to put a 6.5 140gr bullet in orbit at.... 3200fps.


April 24, 2011, 08:06 PM
The 165 gr TSX shot great, although recoil was surprisingly stiffer than the 150 gr rounds I usually shoot.

Looks like I found my elk hunting bullet. Thanks everyone for all the help!

April 24, 2011, 08:09 PM
Those are a classic and devastating. Again nothing wrong with many others.
Also some factory loads come out really hot so that's maybe why you feel more recoil.
So what casing did you try them with?

April 25, 2011, 06:43 AM
These were Federal Premium factory-loaded.

April 25, 2011, 10:59 AM
Can you provide a good close up picture of the case face/ primer?
I might be able to tell you if it is a hot one or not.
Anyway, nothing wrong with it the rifle likes them. Actually a little more punch is welcome for hunting.

April 27, 2011, 05:28 PM
The 165 Nosler Partition will do just fine.

April 27, 2011, 09:37 PM
Can you provide a good close up picture of the case face/ primer?

I can, but not now. The spent brass is in the box at my buddy's house. I'll probably be getting some of that stuff this weekend, so I'll put one up then.

April 27, 2011, 10:41 PM
Great. That was .308win right? ..or 30.06?

April 27, 2011, 11:07 PM
308 win

Art Eatman
April 28, 2011, 08:25 AM
Enuf. Pretty much answered; gone wanderin'...

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