.357 for deer


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newbuckeye
December 6, 2011, 06:20 AM
I decided I was going to try my .357 this year on our deer gun season. All I could find last minute was 158 gr SJSP, not the 180's I wanted. As it turned out, I didn't see any deer, but this 'yote made a mad dash past my ground blind. By the time I could react, he was at 20 yards running up hill and away from me. I hit him behind the rib cage on the left side (see the blood spot). What surprised me, there was no exit wound. The only reasoning I can come up with is that his fur was so thick that is really slowed down the boolet. With the angle I don't think it hit the right shoulder (no autopsy).

I guess my biggest question is 158 gr really heavy enough for deer at bow range?

http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l272/flipntired/1203111029.jpg

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JERRY
December 6, 2011, 07:08 AM
a .357 magnum with the right load is fine for short distance deer hunting.

bikerdoc
December 6, 2011, 07:28 AM
I use 357 on deer. I prefer 180 gr. out of my Marlin 1894C. That said I have used 158 gr at 40 yd and got a DRT. Appropos of nothing, I never got a yote but did get a bobcat couple yrs ago.

MCgunner
December 6, 2011, 07:51 AM
Factory ammo, except for a few like Buffalo Bore, sux. I have killed a couple with my Blackhawk, even a hog, and one at 80 yards with my Rossi 92 using a cast 158 SWC from a Lee mold which with gas check actually weighs 165 grains. I shoot the 180 XTP in my Blackhawk at 1400 fps and it's very accurate. That one should be good to 75 yards or so out of the pistol. But, I don't know about factory stuff. Most of it now days is pretty poor. The lighter stuff is designed for self defense on humans and is inappropriate for hunting IMHO. I have killed a hog with my carry load, a 140 Speer at about 1450 fps from my 3" Taurus 66. It was a DRT, on shot kill, but it was a head shot.

I like the .357 magnum for hunting and, out of a rifle, it approaches .30-30 or .35 Remington light. My 165 grain load over 16.8 grains Li'l Gun is pushing 1900 fps. That's pretty danged hot. It's running 1470 fps in my 6.5" blackhawk pushed by 14.5 grains of 2400.

jmr40
December 6, 2011, 07:58 AM
At bow hunting ranges it'll do fine. At longer ranges, on larger deer I'd prefer 180's. If 158's were all I had, I wouldn't stay home.

303tom
December 6, 2011, 05:04 PM
The .357 Magnum basically doubles its kinetic energy when it’s fired from a carbine, and it almost earns a promotion to the Big Leagues of rifle ballistics. But not quite. The result is substantially more powerful than a .30 Carbine, but even on paper it takes the most exotic .357 loads to equal the most pedestrian .30-30 loadings. And the .30-30 still dramatically outperforms these exotic .357s at longer ranges.

kbbailey
December 6, 2011, 08:56 PM
I have taken several deer with my .357's. I have killed every deer I shot with one, but certainly have had some issues (long stories). IMHO, .357 is the bare minimum. I have since went to .45Colt for hunting.

ColtPythonElite
December 6, 2011, 09:14 PM
I know the use of lighter bullets will probably bring me some flak, but I have been sucessful with 125 gr JHP's out of a 6" revolver on deer. A shot thru the ribs takes the wind out of them in short order.

MCgunner
December 6, 2011, 10:55 PM
The .357 Magnum basically doubles its kinetic energy when it’s fired from a carbine, and it almost earns a promotion to the Big Leagues of rifle ballistics. But not quite. The result is substantially more powerful than a .30 Carbine, but even on paper it takes the most exotic .357 loads to equal the most pedestrian .30-30 loadings. And the .30-30 still dramatically outperforms these exotic .357s at longer ranges.

Perhaps, but I don't need no stinkin' .30-30. :D The .357 will kill a deer or hog dead as a .30-30 does to 100 yards. Any farther and I have a .257 Roberts, a .308 Winchester, or a 7mm Remington Magnum in my gun safe.

Now, .30-30 DOES make a good handgun load, too. I shoot a 150 grain Nosler BT at 2050 fps out of my 12" Contender and have taken 5 deer quite dead with it out to about 90 yards. It is pushing just under 1000 ft lbs at 200 yards and shoots 3" groups from the bench at that range with a 2x scope, which can embarrass a lot of rifles.

I've killed deer with a .30-30 rifle, a .357 rifle, a .30-30 handgun, and a .357 handgun. I no longer have the rifle (an old 340 Savage bolt gun), but no matter, have better rifles. I wouldn't mind a lever gun in the caliber, but it's not high on my desired list of firearms. The .357, however, is neat since it can be raised 3 rotations of the rear sight, loaded with a 105 grain lee SWC in .38 brass over 2.3 grains of Bullseye, and do a fair impersonation of a .22LR on squirrel and rabbit and such, 1.5" accurate at 50 yards in my Rossi. Very versatile rifle. THAT is what I like about .357 carbines. :D

c01
December 6, 2011, 11:18 PM
Three deer. 10,13,25 yards approx DRT with tthe 357 180 grain. Its shot placement. Can you put it in the boiler room?

1stmarine
December 6, 2011, 11:48 PM
Of course is fine. For decades people hunted with lever actions that had way less than that and now all the sudden folks feel they need a 50BMG to pop deer.
Have a happy hunting. Choose bullets with better BC that can give a bit more range if needed.

BBQLS1
December 7, 2011, 09:37 AM
Of course is fine. For decades people hunted with lever actions that had way less than that and now all the sudden folks feel they need a 50BMG to pop deer.
Have a happy hunting. Choose bullets with better BC that can give a bit more range if needed.

Exactly. Do your part, understand the limitation of .357 Mag and it will work fine.

bangaway
December 7, 2011, 10:40 AM
At 60 yards my .357 revolver, loaded with 158 gr. soft points, went through both shoulders of a 2 point buck. Two holes bled died in ten feet. Rifle gives more range and accuracy. I have not shot a deer with 125 gr. heads but as it is a favorite with self defense groups should work. People are heavier and thicker than deer. I kill coyotes with 125 gr. heads at over 100 yds. Shot placement is important. Hit your mark and it is 0 deer thirty. Have fun and bangaway.

MCgunner
December 7, 2011, 10:49 AM
People aren't heavier and thicker than deer. Well, some are, but you ain't shootin' through a scapula, just ribs and a sternum when you're shooting a human. I don't even like 125 grain stuff for self defense, though, prefer 140 Speer JHP. The 125 stuff needs long barrels (not a problem for hunting) and it's got a rep for forcing cone erosion, hard on guns.

I use heavies, 165 hard cast SWC or 180 XTP for hunting.

2 point buck.

I'm curious, is that western count or a spike? Don't matter, just I don't here "2 point". But, folks in Colorado, Montana and such only count one side and leave out the brow tine (western count).

newbuckeye
December 7, 2011, 03:05 PM
Thanks everybody. I should have said I was shooting a 6" GP 100. I will def be ready next year with some 180s.

1stmarine
December 7, 2011, 06:07 PM
Heavy grain makes more sense. Although they might leave the barrel slower due the inteneded use they will probably reach the target faster due the slower drag deceleration.
Do not need more to pop a deer. Just be aware of the limitations to do it as fast and humanly possible.

bangaway
December 8, 2011, 12:24 PM
That would be western count. Keith's .358429 is 177 gr. ready to shoot. It has the highest BC at .286 that I know of. It is my next deer bullet. Should do well. Have fun and bangaway.

leeroy71
December 9, 2011, 12:18 PM
All the 30-30 comparisons are informative as to potential. But here in Ohio it is not a legal choice:banghead:. Although, modern slug gun and front stuffer technology, the 30-30 and its ilk should be considered.

But thats off topic.

Inside 75yds 158gr pills, along with shot placement, should be just fine.
I prefer 180s, but, i also wouldn't stay home without them.

1stmarine
December 9, 2011, 12:55 PM
I didn't know in Ohio you had those BS caliber restrictions like the folks in Indiana. Can you use 338federal or marlin?

newbuckeye
December 10, 2011, 11:02 AM
It says " Handgun, with 5 inch minimum barrel, using a strait walled cartridge .357 caliber or larger"

Clipper
December 10, 2011, 01:56 PM
I used a Ruger blackhawk in .357 for everything from rabbits (.38 wadcutters) to deer (145 grain Silvertip HPs) for over 20 years...Didn't even own a rifle back then.

bnkrtstk
December 10, 2011, 08:25 PM
Has anyone used the Hornady LE? If so, what results?

sugarmaker
December 10, 2011, 08:43 PM
35 years ago I plugged a deer with a 357 blackhawk and some 160-ish grain swc's I had cast up. The animal did eventually die (nice deer, 180 lb 6 pt) but it was a pretty bad drag as it ran through some rough country. As a result I stick to rifles and recently have been having fun with a 375HH. Drags are shorter these days.

T.R.
December 13, 2011, 04:53 PM
I killed this cow elk with my 357 MAG shooting 158 gr hollow tips. First shot fired at approx 50 ft or so. Second shot fired at about 65 feet or so. Both bullets did considerable internal damage at this short range.

TR

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/rushmoreman/357MAGelk-1.jpg

1stmarine
December 13, 2011, 06:03 PM
HEy you look like Dirty harry goes hunting! lol!
Great hunt! amazing!

d2wing
December 14, 2011, 03:18 PM
I used 158 gr factory loads in Ruger. No problem at close range. That's the minimum cartridge here for deer.

kbbailey
December 16, 2011, 09:09 PM
The animal did eventually die (nice deer, 180 lb 6 pt) but it was a pretty bad drag as it ran through some rough country.

I have at least 4 stories like this one from my .357 mag hunts. About the same number of fairly quick kills.

MCgunner
December 16, 2011, 09:21 PM
As a result I stick to rifles and recently have been having fun with a 375HH. Drags are shorter these days.

I ain't THAT mad at deer. :D Most all of my rifle kills are bang flops. A good bullet in the right spot is the key. Actually, .257 Roberts is one of my favorite rifles for deer, killed a couple dozen in my hand and I don't know how many for my grandpa. With a 100 grain Sierra Game King, it ain't broke. :D It's a lot easier on me than a .375 H&H, too.

devildog66
December 18, 2011, 08:28 AM
I had concerns about the .357 as well but I shot a nice doe this year with a H&R Handi-Rifle in .357 and it worked with one shot through the lungs/heart. I was not overly impressed with the .140 gr Hornady LeveRevolution bullet and its terminal performance although it did do its job. Doe was at about 40 yards and moving and hit quartering away. Within reason, I believe it always comes back to shot placement more than the caliber/bullet.

BTW, a quick plug for the Handi-Rifle! Nothing sexy or "tacti-xotical" about it but incredibly accurate and fast to the target as well as inexpensive. I also love me some .257 Roberts! Just a fantastic cartridge and easy to shoot.

The Termite
January 7, 2012, 11:15 PM
My daughter, age 14, took her first buck with a Marlin 1894C .357. Load was Remington 158gr JSP.

Story here: http://pawpawshouse.blogspot.com/2012/01/357-for-deer.html

30.06
January 7, 2012, 11:48 PM
Bullet 158 gr. Winchester JHP .
Full charge of H110 .
Six inch revolver .
Deer , good size doe 45 yds .
Doe was shot in rear , turning away as shot was fired .
Bullet travels through deer to left shoulder blade , ricocheting out through front corner of right lung .
Wound track looked like a one inch pipe running through doe .
Most of the travel was through the white tallow under the backbone .
Doe ran maybe fifty yds .

bangaway
January 8, 2012, 01:17 AM
Your daughter got a nice deer. Congtats. Was the rifle scoped? Who would have believed the bullet would go through 3 feet. My .357 shots always go through the deer as they have been across. Have fun and bangaway.

357 Terms
January 8, 2012, 09:16 PM
180gr XTP's outa my 6.5 Blackhawk and my Marlin, handloads.

Much of the factory 357 ammo has been loaded down, stick with BB or Double Tap or other "full house" loads.

Virg461
January 10, 2012, 02:36 PM
158's out of my Rossi carbine punch straight through both sides and leave a nice big hole.

newbuckeye
January 11, 2012, 08:43 AM
I have a rossi in .44 mag and I love it. i really want one in .357 too but leaning more toward a mare's leg. I hear it's classified as a pistol, and one we can hunt with it in Ohio (I think). I need to research that and the ballistic advantage of the longer barel over my GP 100.

22-rimfire
January 11, 2012, 09:00 AM
I think the 357 mag from a revolver is the bare minimum for whitetail hunting and you should keep your ranges to recurve bow hunting ranges (40 yards max).

I used a 41 mag revolver and it is a good choice (as is the 44 mag) with a 5.5" or longer barrel. I have since moved to using a SRH in 480 Ruger which is serious whitetail medicine from a revolver.

So, my recommendation is that you choose something in 41 mag or larger for whitetail hunting. The 41 or 44 are much easier to learn to shoot due to the recoil.

pricedo
January 14, 2012, 07:29 AM
Of course is fine. For decades people hunted with lever actions that had way less than that and now all the sudden folks feel they need a 50BMG to pop deer.
Have a happy hunting. Choose bullets with better BC that can give a bit more range if needed.
My dad & grandad both popped deer with a .32 Rimfire Stevens falling block rifle which is still around the house somewhere.
Guess those old fashion deer didn't have any of the modern gurus around to tell them they weren't supposed to be dead.
Now according to some of my buddies I'm "seriously under gunned" with my 16" bbl Rossi Puma in .357 Mag with 5 times the muzzle energy of that old .32 Rimfire cartridge and my 16" Rossi Puma in .44 Mag which would be considered a "cannon" in those early days is "marginal".
As long as you remain cognizant of the range limitations of the carbines in pistol calibers you're good to go.

MCgunner
January 14, 2012, 07:54 AM
I think the 357 mag from a revolver is the bare minimum for whitetail hunting and you should keep your ranges to recurve bow hunting ranges (40 yards max).

I'd say compound crossbow range, 60 yards, from experience. Heck, I'd take a broadside further out with my 180 handload in my 6.5" Blackhawk. 60 yards is probably a good limit on hogs, though.

bangaway
January 15, 2012, 03:10 AM
Look at the web Ballistics By The Inch.com to compare barrel vels. Try and view the Steve McQueen series called Branded to see a mares leg in action. Have fun and bangaway.

leeroy71
January 15, 2012, 11:09 AM
Like the OP I also live in Ohio. MOST shots are 100 yards or less. The .357 mag firing 158 180 gr is certainly "enough" gun for the ranges likely to be encountered in Ohio.

BTW, the Steve McQueen series was "Wanted Dead or Alive". Chuck Conners stared in "Branded".

kyle1974
January 15, 2012, 11:22 PM
I don't know about deer, but I shot a 350 lb oryx in the neck after trailing it with a hunter. Shot with a 4" barrel. It was standing looking at us about 10 yards away, one shot in the neck and it was all over.

newbuckeye
January 16, 2012, 06:20 AM
Look at the web Ballistics By The Inch.com to compare barrel vels. Have fun and bangaway.

It looks like about 200 FPS difference between that and the 6" GP100 I have now when comparing strictly barrel length.

Lloyd Smale
January 16, 2012, 07:36 AM
ive shot a few deer with 357s out of handguns and it will do in a pinch but theres better handguns for the job. Id say on an average in my experience a deer hit well with a 357 will travel about twice as far as a deer hit in the same spot with something like a 44 mag. Out of a rifle it is a much more effective round and is a fine deer gun out to 75-100 yards. Not quite as effective as a 3030 levergun but it will kill deer cleanly.

MCgunner
January 16, 2012, 07:03 PM
ive shot a few deer with 357s out of handguns and it will do in a pinch but theres better handguns for the job. Id say on an average in my experience a deer hit well with a 357 will travel about twice as far as a deer hit in the same spot with something like a 44 mag.

Can you quantify that with statistics of an adequate sample size and show a 95 percent confidence interval? IOW, can you PROVE it?

I didn't think so....another case of net opinion worth what ya pay for it.

Kachok
January 17, 2012, 10:44 PM
357s are not my first choice for deer but they will do the trick at close range given the right ammo, many HPs are designed for very limited penatration which is not ideal for deer.

snakeman
January 17, 2012, 10:55 PM
You need a good 158 to 180 grain soft point or hard cast bullet.

OH_Spartan
January 17, 2012, 10:57 PM
My dad shot a deer with a 357 this year, his first with a revolver. He used 180 grn XTP's, loaded hot. The bullet went through the heart, the wound channel pinched closed. The deer ran 35 yards and fell without leaving a drop of blood.

I've taken deer with 44-mag using 240 grn Federal Hydra-shocks. Both have fallen in place with a body shot. My dad is now in the market for a 44.

MCgunner
January 18, 2012, 11:47 AM
I've had 'em run further than 35 yards with a heart/lung shot from a .308. :rolleyes: It happens.

Hanshi
January 18, 2012, 03:07 PM
Though I no longer hunt deer with handguns, I have over the years killed several with both 4" and 6" .357s with 125grn handloads and 158grn factory hollow points. Never needed but one shot in each instance. None was over about 50-60 yards. I'd have to give the caliber a thumbs up.

baylorattorney
January 18, 2012, 03:25 PM
I was surprised by the knockdown power on a buck at close range 10-15 yards.

NelsErik
January 19, 2012, 12:36 PM
Not sure if it counts as a .357, but my dad's favorite hunting gun is his 35 Whelen. He uses the same bullets that I use for plinking with my S&W 627 V-Comp. I have always wanted his 35 Whelen, he shot a bear in Alaska with it last year.

OH_Spartan
January 21, 2012, 08:47 AM
I realize a deer might run 100 yards after being hit with a 357, 30-05, 308, 300-mag, 44-mag, etc.

Though not well expressed in my post, the concern was "without a drop of blood." If my dad's deer had gone 100 yds, my dad wouldn't have been able to see it fall and maybe not find it.

MCgunner
January 21, 2012, 02:59 PM
Use a large meplat SWC and there will be blood. :D

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