Why do I "need" a 300WM


March 10, 2013, 08:05 PM
I currently do not own a bolt gun. My deer hunting is covered by my mini-30. I have an itch for a bolt gun though. I have a sweet spot for old tang-safety Ruger M77's. I found one in my LGS yesterday. Irons, red pad, pristine, and in 300wm for a price I can live with. I have the rifle on hold and I can't stop thinking about it.

I am trying to talk my self out of it. Aside from the very rare elk/moose hunt, why do I "need" a 300wm?

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March 10, 2013, 08:09 PM
You don't.

A .300 Magelem will do nothing to a deer your Mini-30 won't, except destroy more meat.

And make you flinch like a little girl and miss more deer worse.


March 10, 2013, 08:27 PM
I would suggest perhaps a .30-06 Sprg. I have a .300 WM, and the sole reason I keep it is I don't want to lose the money by selling it. Do I need that rifle? Nope.


Flatbush Harry
March 10, 2013, 08:34 PM
As usual, rc is right! If you're not an experienced shooter, shooting at distances over 500 yards (and few hunters, if any, should try to take game farther) or competing at 1,000 yards+, you surely don't. I find the .300 WM unpleasant to shoot compared to .270s, .308 Wins and .30-06s...all excellent "big" guns for deer and totally appropriate for elk with the right bullet.

I have never needed or wanted a "fast thirty"...my .308 Win does just fine at long distances with 175gr Match bullets and, if I feel the need to get a big bang, I can use my .375 H&H. Curiously, I find it less unpleasant to shoot than my friends' .300 WIn Mag and .300 Weatherby Mag. Craig Boddington assures us all regularly that a .375 H&H is on the right side of the margin for anything on this planet and, until a life form appears that requires faster and lighter than my 260gr AccuBonds from the .375, I'll stay with my non-magnum muskets.


March 10, 2013, 08:36 PM
You do know you can shoot a reduced load in the 300 WM, just acts like a 30.
06 when that is all you need.....

March 10, 2013, 08:39 PM
But why?

Managed recoil loads for the .300 are not cheap, or easy to find.

If you are a reloader, no problem.

But I doubt the OP is.

Most ordenary people will find the .308 or 30-06 all the recoil they can handle accurately in a sporter weight hunting rifle.


March 10, 2013, 08:42 PM
A .300 Winmag does not destroy more meat. I use mine for Pronghorn, deer and elk. You can use different bullet weights. You can hand load to the power level you want. And they are accurate. Get it and enjoy. I shoot 180 grain bullet for everything. Never lost an animal.

March 10, 2013, 08:44 PM
You do know you can shoot a reduced load in the 300 WM, just acts like a 30.
06 when that is all you need.....
If you're going to shoot .30-06 power out of a .300 WM, shouldn't you just buy a .30-06? Plus, as was said, it's not cheap to buy factory ammo for the win mag.

March 10, 2013, 08:45 PM
why do I "need" a 300wm?

It's NOT the "Bill of Needs." It's the Bill of Rights.

I didn't need one of these, but it's in my garage, and I'm a happier camper because. I'd rather have this in my garage then the $$$ I spent on it in the bank.



I'm not any help, never aspired to be any help. I bought a .458 Win. Mag. on the same sort of whim. No elephants in the area, I just liked it.

Texan Scott
March 10, 2013, 08:49 PM
Polar bears. Global warming may eventually result in polar bears coming south to Idaho. Don't know why or if that even makes sense, but if it does, you'll be ready.

Otherwise, you probably won't actually need one.

March 10, 2013, 08:56 PM
I've always thought a fun rifle to shoot, and something I don't already have covered = NEED.

Then again that's how i found myself coming home with a .444, .325, 30-06, .308, 25-06,........

March 10, 2013, 09:00 PM
The full power capability of a 300WM will kick the crap out of you. I used to have an FN bolt rifle in 300WM and it was so unpleasant to shoot I sold it within a month of getting it.

I could have downloaded it to 30 06 or less. So I thought why deal with this?

I do have a 270WSM that is spectacular and at full house loads is absolutely easy for me to shoot. And I am one of those people who hates excessive recoil.

So if you reload and really like the Ruger I'd say go for it and load as you like. But if you are stuck with factory ammo I'd say go shoot one first because if its like mine it was so unpleasant to shoot that a dozen rounds was all I could put up with in a range session.

March 10, 2013, 09:07 PM
Why do you need one?

Besides polar bears, as was already mentioned, I'd also note that in the event of a zombie apocalypse, there's no conclusive data that says you won't also have to contend with zombie bears, zombie elk, zombie moose, zombie rhinos escaped from the zoo, etc.

If you want one, get one.

March 10, 2013, 09:28 PM
It's really going to depend on your tolerance for recoil. I have a 300mby mag, comparable to the win mag, and it is a thumper. I usually get through about 40 rds before deciding my shoulders had enough. It brought back some bad habits that I had to reconquer. I still find it enjoyable and get that giggle when I shoot it, but it's all going to depend on your own tolerance. It will ultimately be an elk or moose gun and won't see near the use as my 30-06 or 35 rem but it doesn't eat much and takes up little real estate. I wouldn't get rid of it and am not sorry I got it.
If you like thumpers get it. It's all the reason you need.

March 10, 2013, 09:37 PM
A .300 Magelem will do nothing to a deer your Mini-30 won't, except destroy more meat.

Unless it's 350 yards away!! :D

I have three rifles chambered in .300 Win Mag and I think it's a great cartridge. Personally, I don't agree with all of this "too much recoil" stuff. I have a Winchester Model 70 Extreme Weather that weighs about 9lb with the scope and it's easy to shoot off a bench let alone offhand. My coworkers .33 G&A Ultralight ... now that's a beast no matter how you shoot it.

My advice, if you like the rifle and can afford it then buy it. You don't need anyone's approval.

March 10, 2013, 09:38 PM
Nothing wrong with a .300 Winny, but it's about as fast as a would go in a .30 cal rifle. With the right bullet their is nothing you can't hunt with it, and you never know when you will get a chance to hunt Africa where the .300 is appreciated for the little boost it gives to a 30-06.

Having said that I have multiple .308's and 30-06's, and only one .300 Winny.

March 10, 2013, 10:27 PM
There's nothing wrong with a .300 Win Mag.

Just think of it as a .30/06 with a bit more (not a lot more) velocity with the same bullets.

In a well-proportioned stock that fits, recoil shouldn't be a problem. Seriously, I think folks who lament the recoil of a .300 Win Mag must be shooting them in poorly proportioned rifles without recoil pads.

But I really don't see much advantage over .30/06 on game. Though I didn't agree with everything the late Jeff Cooper wrote, I think he was correct when he opined than if one was undergunned with a .30/06, the solution was more bullet, not more velocity.

. . . you never know when you will get a chance to hunt Africa where the .300 is appreciated for the little boost it gives to a 30-06. I've taken impala, kudu, leopard, bushbuck, zebra, gemsbok, and other game in Africa with my .30/06 with one shot apiece and don't believe a .300 Mag would have worked any better. None of my PH's ever expressed a desire for me to use a .300 mag instead . . .

March 10, 2013, 10:43 PM
It is about range. Your mini 30 is a borderline choice. Well below a 30-30. Recoil concerns are overstated. A 300 mag is more than needed. A 308 is really more than adequate. But if you want one it will do the job with slightly more recoil than a 30/06. The biggest disadvantages are rifle bulk and ammo costs. If you reload it is same cost for any and downloading to lower powers is an option. Yor can use full power loads only when needed. Makes for a very versatile gun

Look at it this way. A 300 mag does about the same job at 600 yards as a 30/06 at 500, a 308 at 450 yards and the 7.62 X 39 at about 75 yards. I'm not advocating one for everyone. I have a 300 WSM. Very similar round. More than I need but not the monster some will try to claim

March 10, 2013, 11:20 PM
The throat in .300 win mag may be washed out in as little as 1000 rounds. I wouldn't expect it to last 3000 rounds. The owner sold it for one of three reasons, money shot out or hated recoil. 7 mag has similar target ballistics and easier to shoot.

Resist Evil
March 10, 2013, 11:33 PM
My hunting buddy uses a 300 WM for everything--pronghorns, mulies, and elk. He believes in his magnum. He reloads and dials his ammo in for the animal type.

If you want a 300, for gosh sake, buy one. You don't have to need it in order to get it. The government buggers haven't banned them yet, so far as I know.

I use a smaller magnum for the same game as my friend. I only bought it for the flat trajectory.

Regardless of your caliber choice though, it really is about shot placement more than caliber, IMO.

Lloyd Smale
March 11, 2013, 08:42 AM
You don't.

A .300 Magelem will do nothing to a deer your Mini-30 won't, except destroy more meat.

And make you flinch like a little girl and miss more deer worse.
a mini 30 is a 100 yard deer gun period. A 300 win mag is a 500 yard deer gun. Id say there some differnce there. Yes it will make you flinch like a little girl IF YOUR a little girl. Most who can handle a gun like an 06 have no problem with a 300 mag. Most 300mags are about a lb heavier then most 06 and that alone takes away alot of the recoil differnce. Not shooting and practicing with your gun makes you miss not recoil. Ive yet to be actually hurt by shooting ANY gun. Shoot your new 300 mag a while and youll forget all about the recoil. Most guys who badmouth magnum rifles are guys that consider shooting a rifle alot going through a WHOLE box of ammo before deer season. If shooting something like a 300 mag inspires fear in you its time to find another hobby. As to barrel life ive have a 300 mag that has probably 2k through it that still shots like new. That said id dont load them with 5 grains more powder then the loading manuals recomend and i dont sit and shoot 10 shots as fast as i can. Let the barrel cool completely between 3 shot groups and keep the pressures sane, keep the barrel clean and clean it properly and a 300 win mag will last a good long time. Every time theres a post on magnum rifles you get guys who claim they do nothing there 243 doesnt do. bottom line is they do! Bottom line is in most cases youll find that the guys badmouthing them are better at running a keyboard then a trigger.

Kayaker 1960
March 11, 2013, 09:01 AM
As others have said, if you are a reloader then you can always download the .300 that being said, I remember when most everyone I know had to have a rifle with "Magnum" in the name, it seemed that non magnums were only for women and children. I had a 7mm Rem mag that I killed several deer with. My longest shot was about 350 yards but all the rest have been under 200 yards. That 7mm was heavy. I eventually sold it and went with a 30-06. It weighs less and is cheaper to feed. I haven't missed the magnum at all, love my 06.

March 11, 2013, 09:12 AM
Its all about versatility. The power can be selected over a wider range, for instance, long distance shooting as stated above. One gun, many tasks.

March 11, 2013, 09:25 AM
BECAUSE EVERYONE NEEDS A BELTED MAGNUM IN THEIR COLLECTION! CASE CLOSED! Beside, it's a whole heck of a lot more accurate than any mini 30 and has a bunch more range if you trek west in the future, can take larger game, and you can always down load it to .308/.30-06 levels and still walk all over that mini 30, but with less recoil...that is if you're a serious rifleman and handload. If not, never mind. :D

Oh, wait, you ARE west. You are in Idaho and only hunt with a mini 30? Weird. Yup, you need a 300.

March 11, 2013, 11:31 AM
Just get the .300WM, it sounds like you want it.

Shoot it at 300 yards for group, and then shoot the Mini-30 at 300 yards for group.

Just my .02,

March 11, 2013, 01:10 PM
I've taken impala, kudu, leopard, bushbuck, zebra, gemsbok, and other game in Africa with my .30/06 with one shot apiece and don't believe a .300 Mag would have worked any better. None of my PH's ever expressed a desire for me to use a .300 mag instead . . .

Then why not argue that a .270 Win is enough for plains game since many on safari use that cartridge in that role? Cartridge selection is all about insurance and you never know when you're going to need it. I always prefer to have a bigger hammer rather than a smaller one if I can swing both. A coworker is planning on taking a .300 Weatherby Mag to Africa as his light gun based on the recommendation of his buddy who has been numerous times.

March 11, 2013, 02:05 PM
My longest shot was about 350 yards but all the rest have been under 200 yards. That 7mm was heavy. I eventually sold it and went with a 30-06. It weighs less and is cheaper to feed. I haven't missed the magnum at all, love my 06.

And I have a Remington stainless M7 in .308 that can do anything that .30-06 does for you and i bet it's even lighter. It shoots 3/4 MOA and if I didn't handload, .308 is easy to find and cheap to feed.

I hear ya on the heavy gun, but let's just put this into perspective. My 7 mag is no heavier than a .30-06 in THAT rifle, a Savage 110. Well, it's got 2" more barrel, so it weighs that much more, I guess. If you want a light rifle, there's lots of 'em out there, though, but the little M7 is my fave. But, there are magnum caliber guns that are under 6 lbs available, if you really want one. :D

March 11, 2013, 04:23 PM
Regarding previous posts about .300WM's accuracy, I have to agree. Everything I have read about the .300WM's accuracy being a surprise given the short neck, is true. My Weatherby Mark V is amazingly accurate, especially with Hornady's SuperFormance 165 grain GMXs. Again, it isn't that I really need the big of a rifle cartridge, but selling anything costs (loses) money. I think the key is to get what one really wants, not merely needs, and to keep it. If you want a .300WM, and can afford it, buy it.


March 11, 2013, 08:07 PM
The 300 WM is a great cartridge for longer range hunting for deer, elk, and moose.
Do you need it? I don't know.
Do I need mine? Maybe not.
But I really like it.
You might too.

March 11, 2013, 09:13 PM
Guns can come or go at our whim.

So you try out the Ruger 300 mag and either you like it or sell it. No big deal.

A mini-30 is just a 7.62X39. Kind of short ranged for big country that I remember Idaho to be.

Consider a reloading outfit as well if you don't already.........

March 13, 2013, 08:55 PM
I picked up a Winchester Mod 70 SMBOSS Classic last month in 300WM. I was expecting it to kick my 112lb but all over the place, but to be honest I have a .410 single shot that kicks harder than the Winchester. In fact today after last Dr appointment I went to back of property and fire a few rounds off, the only thing is it is extremely loud, but using ear plugs was able to handle it fine.

March 13, 2013, 09:11 PM
Heck, I shoot .22 mag and up with ear plugs and with a short barrel .22LR I'll use ear plugs. HUNTING, now that's where I don't use ear plugs. I only have one gun that I use ear plugs with while hunting...well, ear muffs. That's a .30-30 12 " Contender, and ESPECIALLY out of a box blind. That thing can put a hurt on ya. :D

March 13, 2013, 09:43 PM

I went through the same thing you did a few years back. I live in North Texas where my Black Lab weighs more than some of the does. I have a .243, 270, and .30-30 but thought I would get a 300WM for that rare elk or moose hunt just like you said. I came close to pulling the trigger several times on one but ended up getting a .30-06, which I did not need either. I sold the .30-06 two years later for cash flow but have just put another one on lay away. I figure if I can ever afford to go on that rare elk or moose hunt, I will be ready with the .270 and .30-06. I know one of those will kill anything in the lower 48.

Having said all that, I think there is something mystical about the word "Magnum." And "need" is a word that does not fit well into a shooter or hunter's vocabulary. How many of the toys we have ever acquired were based on need? Not many in my case.

March 14, 2013, 09:23 AM
I wanted a bigger gun about 1990. My only deer rifle was my grandpa's .257 Roberts with which I'd killed every deer I'd ever killed from the age of 11 save one. I was thinking .280. I really like 7mm bullets and at the time, there was greater variety in 7mm bullets than .270 bullets. 7mm bullets have better BCs, too. BUT, I figured, heck, why not the 7 mag? If I decide I shoulda got the .280, I can always download the mag, can't upload the .280 to match the 7mm magnum.

I never downloaded it and it seemed to work just fine on deer in west Texas and New Mexico mulies that will outweigh even a large black lab by multiples. :D I took a large mulie at 350 yards with it across a canyon.

I now have more rifles in my collection and, heck, in the woods around here I've mostly been using my CVA Wolf .50 caliber 209 primed inline. That thing is neat and it gives hogs and deer NO quarter AND you can eat right up to the hole. :D But, I do think, if I had one gun, having it in a large magnum caliber would give me a lot more versatility than going with a smaller round like the .30-06 or .308. You can always load it down, but .308 or .30-06 will NEVER BE a .300 magnum.

March 14, 2013, 11:45 PM
I've had 2 300 Win Mags, a Ruger #1 and a Browning stainless stalker. Never considered the recoil of either of them to be excessive. I sold the Ruger #1 to a buddy for $375 years ago. Sure wish I still had it now, but he isn't about to part with it. Anyway the best reason for buying any rifle is because you want it..

March 15, 2013, 12:57 AM
Some of you have mentioned loading down the 300 WM to a .30-06. Can you buy factory 300 Win Mag ammo that has meets that criteria?

March 15, 2013, 04:31 AM
The last time I checked this was still America...sort of.

The whole "need" thing chaps my butt almost as much as "No legitimate sporting purpose" does!

Do you want it?
Can you afford it?
Will you still respect yourself in the morning after you buy it?

If you answered yes to all of the above, GET IT!
It's not about what anyone else thinks you NEED, it's about what YOU WANT!

Does anyone really NEED a Mercedes-Benz, a chocolate cake, a 5000 square foot house or an Irish Wolfhound?

If you want it and can afford it, get it, you only live once and the expiration date on life isn't guaranteed.

Besides, Texan Scott really got me thinking about the whole global warming/polar bear thing. What if global warming causes another ice age? Imagine all those polar bears headed south to take over the world, then imagine each of them coated with six inches of rock-hard ice armor over all of their vital areas!

Are you still feeling all warm and fuzzy about that 7.62x39?

Get that .300 Win. Mag, NOW!
YOU might not need it, but the defenseless children of your neighborhood DO!


On a more serious note, if you really want to use and shoot that rifle much, it's almost mandatory that you reload unless you're independently wealthy.

March 16, 2013, 01:11 AM
Get up in the Danskins and you may want the extra oooomf at longer ranges. I have a 270 wsm and it will do everything I ask of it and is not bad on recoil about same as any 30-06 or 7mm I have shot. A 300 WM is quite a bit harder from what I understand. At the ranges I feel ok at shooting (400 yds max) the 270 wsm is ore than enough. Would the mini 30 have enough to hit that far? Not sure how well you shoot but 400 is not uncommon out here, especially for areas 39 and 43 which is where lots of 1A hunters go.

March 16, 2013, 10:29 AM
I've got a 300 Win Mag. Ruger Mk II that I've had for years. Probably haven't shot it for a decade. However, when I was developing loads for it, I was amazed at its accuracy. The thing stayed right up with my -06s and my 308s.

The 300 WM's recoil never bothered me any more than the .30-06...and the -06 just isn't a problem. The 300's a heavier gun and I think that mitigates the recoil a lot.

The neighbor has the 300 on loan right now. He wants to use it for a moose hunt later this year and needed to get familiar with it. He, too, was surprised that recoil is not an issue. I was invited on the hunt, but other commitments....

You never know when an opportunity to use a long-range/heavy-hitter will arise. You might be glad you have it years from now.

Chief 101
March 16, 2013, 10:58 AM
You need one because you are in Idaho...you need one because its a tang safety M77..you need one because you want one...you just need it or tell me where it is...

March 16, 2013, 11:36 AM
So much good stuff here. Let me answer a few. Almost all my deer hunting is done under 200yds. Mostly Lowman or Island Park areas. Have passed up a few due to range? yup, sure did. That makes it fun though. Grew up hunting deer with a Win 94 so 7.62x39 doesn't bother me in the least.

I am not really about the long shots, I do hand load but don't do it that often, only when I "need" to turn out a bulk lot. I did do some .308 target loads for a Savage 10fp a few years back but no "accuracy" work-ups since.

Not that recoil shy but I did shoot a .338wm I really didn't care for that much.

I do want this rifle, mostly cuz I dig the style of the "safari" flip sights and I do prefer old Rugers over others for some odd reason even if they do have tendency to turn purple, hahaha.

The LGS is sitting on it for a month while I mull it over (perk of being on a first name basis with the owner).

I was hoping for some great epiphany one direction or the other for getting safe queen that would likely see ~50 rounds a year ond only come out for a "biggun"

Great stuff to consider here guys.

March 16, 2013, 12:30 PM
If I don't have a gun in a certain caliber then it means I need one.
If I already have one in that caliber then it probably does something the other one I have doesn't.
If it does everything the other one already does then it means I just want it for the hell of it.

If you like it and spending the money for it does not create any hardship for you then why not buy it.

I'm a single guy and make a decent living. Once my fixed expenses are taken care of I can really save up a bunch of money that I spend foolishly if I have a certain rifle or other toy expense running around in my head.

March 16, 2013, 12:39 PM
if you don't like the recoil of the 338wm, you better shoot that 300 before you make your decision.


March 16, 2013, 01:03 PM
What a great round, I've had 3 rifles in this caliber and currently own 2. Sako makes a real nice .300 Win. mag., their model 85 Grey Wolf. This one is mine (and it don't kick hard - compared to my .458 Lott :D ) -


Sav .250
March 16, 2013, 01:09 PM
Go with you gut.......................

March 16, 2013, 01:30 PM
How about one of the short magnums, I am a belted case phobic.

March 16, 2013, 05:29 PM
I really liked my No 1 in 300wm except for one little thing, with a good firm cheek weld and 10 rounds I looked like ten rounds with Ali, Black eye every time, so finally traded for 270 in the same rifle and never looked back. Very accurate, and a fine rifle, but just didn't fit me. If it fits, and you can work around the recoil , go for it!

March 16, 2013, 05:41 PM
because you want it? you already said the price is fine so buy it and if anything sell it later on or let it collect dust

March 16, 2013, 08:33 PM
The recoil from this 300 H&H Magnum was not objectionable off the bench, probably due to the thick aftermarket recoil pad.


And it shot well. But, I think most people would be better off deer hunting with a 6.5 Swede, 270 Win, or the plain old 30-06.

6.5 Swede


One thing about these magnum rifles, cartridges can be hard to find, though a 300 Win Mag is going to be a lot more common than a 300 WSM or WSSM.

March 17, 2013, 02:11 AM
Heck , even the Swiss K 31 is hard to beat even with open sights .

March 17, 2013, 02:12 AM
Because the ammo is available?

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