Enough Elk Gun


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txcookie
June 16, 2013, 06:04 AM
Ever get bit by a chigger? Its itches for weeks and leaves a little red blister that fills up everytime you pop it.

I have a 270. Its a CDL and it is one of the ones that your lucky to by as it shoots as good as you could ask a rifle too. I chose the 270 as I like multi purpose cartridges and considered it to be a fine Hog, Deer, and elk rifle. I started reading online about the 270 and was stunned to see SO MANY people say it was a Whitetail only cartridge???? Some even said it was marginal for Mulies.

I am no elk hunter but its still causing a dang red blister on me. How can someone say that this round isnt capable or even IDEAL for elk on down? Its ballistically not to far behind the 7mm Rem MAG at 300 which many consider to be perfect? It loses its punch after 450-500 yards but Most elk are killed well within that range right?

Any how I was just yhinking about all the elk that have certainly been mis informed that the 270 that just blew thru their ribs was not enough gun and they should keep on walking. It got me to thinking further. The 270 has been around WAY longer than all the belted Mags so in its time it was the go to Elk cartridge,,,, what changed..

I aint argueing that a 7mm rem mag or 300 win Mag isnt a FAR better choice for a dedicated Elk rifle I am just saying that a man who can shoot his rifle well and knows he can put it in the ribs shouldnt be afraid to choose a rifle chambered in 270 for elk.

There I scratched my itch

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Lloyd Smale
June 16, 2013, 07:40 AM
May not be ideal but its surely adequate.

jmr40
June 16, 2013, 07:47 AM
The 270 has always been darn near a perfect choice for elk. With newer, modern bullets it is even better. I chose a 30-06 forty years ago and never saw much need to own both 270 and 30-06. With my knowledge today I'm not sure I wouldn't go 270 today. In fact the 308/7-08 are looking even better as all around hunting rifles.

If you ever have any doubts about a 270 working on elk, even at long range, just look at this video. If a 243 is a 700 yard elk gun, think what a 270 will do.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hY0w1c-gf18

T.R.
June 16, 2013, 07:55 AM
270 in skilled hands has been toppling North American big game animals for many decades. The advent of Premium bullets has added to the lethality of this popular cartridge. Yet the late Jack O'Connor did okay with standard bullets.

I'm no elk expert as I've slain only 7 of these beasts. My rifle is a Remington in .308 shooting 180 grain bullets. None got away.

TR

Pilot
June 16, 2013, 08:21 AM
While I prefer 7MM-08 for Elk, and Mulies, the .270 is just fine, especially if you reload.

Loosenock
June 16, 2013, 08:43 AM
The .270 was caliber of choice by the famous hunter and "Outdoor Life" writer Jack O'Conner. You really can't find a higher recommendation than that.

'loose

joed
June 16, 2013, 08:47 AM
You have to watch what you read now days. The gun mags seem to push the new cartridges to help sell guns for the manufacturers, and there are a lot of parrots that echo how the writers are correct. Of course the parrots have never owned one of the old classic cartridges and can only base their opinion on what they bought.

One of the guns in my safe is a .25-06, a fine rifle that hasn't failed me in 36 years. Yet if I believe what I read it's junk. It has no match bullets and it's a long action, two strikes. I'll tell you a secret, on a hunt I'll put it up against any of the newer guns.

You're in the same boat with the .270, no match bullets to hunt with and it's a dreaded long action rifle. But I guarantee it will work great for you, just use a hunting bullet (that's what they were meant for) and you also won't notice that extra 1/2" of bolt travel.

Abel
June 16, 2013, 09:53 AM
While I would prefer to have my 3o-o6 for elk, I could 'get by' with a 270 just fine.

WCraven
June 16, 2013, 10:05 AM
I enjoyed my 270 back in the day but i'm now a 7mm-08 owner and if this lady can kill 2 hogs with one shot of a 7mm-08 then i couldn't think an ELK is any thicker skinned then 2 boars..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAirkHM_i20

Skylerbone
June 16, 2013, 10:22 AM
No caliber can be ideal for every situation with every animal, if it were, I'd apply for an elk tag and take an 800 mile shot with a 300 RUM to save gas money. What is often read is often misguided information meant to encourage folks who haven't hunted a particular game to bring enough gun. Unfortunately for the uninitiated, the calibers selected by writers seem skewed toward high performance, long-range without consideration given to geography or ability, let alone average kill distance.

If I were to believe all that I read I might suspect the classic 30-30 to be little more than a 40 yard squirrel gun.

mr.trooper
June 16, 2013, 11:03 AM
Expansive magnums and proprietary cartridges are the marketing rage these days. "Sportsman" style hunters have chomped down on that lure hard, and it seems to be making rifle companies some money.

Stick with a cartridge you know how to shoot. running out and buying a heavy magnum is a great way to develop a flinch, and start loosing game.

tahoe2
June 16, 2013, 11:55 AM
my designated Elk rifle is a 66+ year old 8mm Mauser, that is obsolete and anemic compared to today's rifles.
But it is accurate and deadly. I'm sure your 270 will be just fine, with some heavy for caliber Partitions or A-frame's;
If you don't reload, stick to the premium series ammos from Federal, Hornady, etc ...

35 Whelen
June 16, 2013, 12:08 PM
Expansive magnums and proprietary cartridges are the marketing rage these days. "Sportsman" style hunters have chomped down on that lure hard, and it seems to be making rifle companies some money.

Stick with a cartridge you know how to shoot. running out and buying a heavy magnum is a great way to develop a flinch, and start loosing game.
EXACTLY. Between TV shows and internet videos of "hunters" shooting at elk over distances better measured in fractions of a mile and marketing departments of firearms makers, cartridges such as the .270 are suddenly less powerful, and thereby less adequate than they used to be.

Same can be said of scopes. Where a 3-9X scope used to be plenty, if not overkill for 99% of big game hunting, folks now are led to believe they need scopes capable of studying the craters of distant planets and whose objectives are the size of the trash can in my garage.

35W

Vaarok
June 16, 2013, 12:13 PM
Elk were almost eradicated with the .30-30 Win, and people used to kill them with .54 and .36 caliber Hawkens.

Flatbush Harry
June 16, 2013, 12:19 PM
With 140gr AccuBonds, and just recently, 150gr AccuBonds, a 270 is plenty out to 300 yards.

Now I like my my .375 H&H with 260gr AccuBonds...because you can never tell when you're gonna be charged by a crazed groundhog or squirrel, but I'd trust my .270 Win any day for elk. The hard part of elk hunting is finding one in daylight hours, field dressing him or her, and packing it out on a cold night down a steep, rocky, tree trunk riddled slope two miles back to camp and a warm sleeping bag. Oh, and BTW, for an elk by yourself, that's probably four trips.

FH

natman
June 16, 2013, 02:14 PM
If I were choosing a rifle from scratch for elk I would prefer a bit bigger and heavier bullet so a 270 wouldn't be my first choice, but if that were what I had I'd get some 150 grain premium bullets and go hunting.

GR8GIFT
June 16, 2013, 04:08 PM
The .270 was caliber of choice by the famous hunter and "Outdoor Life" writer Jack O'Conner. You really can't find a higher recommendation than that.

'loose
What he said .270 should be fine it's shot placement that counts. I prefer my .338 Win Mag but that's because it was my first big game rifle and I'm used to it. It has take everything from coyotes to Alaska Moose all with one shot stops. But I wouldn't feel under gunned with a .270 either. It's all in the shooter and shot placement.

H&Hhunter
June 16, 2013, 04:41 PM
A .270 win will kill elk just fine. In fact I killed my first 3 or 4 elk with a .270. The secret is to have perfect shot presentation and keep your range realistic.

What you gain with a larger heavier bullet say a .338/ 250 gr or a .375. 270 gr or some such, is increased shot opportunity. I can take a rear quartering shot with one of the rounds above mentioned and never have to worry if my bullet is going to penetrate deep enough to get to the goods.

I've killed a number of elk that were busting out of the timber at closeish range (under 200 yards) as they were headed away. You simply don't take a shot like that with a .270 or a .30-06 or a 7MM on elk. I won't take that shot with a .300 mag either unless I'm shooting a heavy super good bullet like a 200 ge TSX or something like that even then it's marginal. When you step up to a .338 with a 250 gr premium bullet you increase your margins significantly. A .375H&H with a .270 is just a about the same category as the .338 with a 250.

So by definition is a .270 win adequate for elk? Yes, but not in all circumstances. BTW IMO opinion the 7 RM is one of the worst elk rounds ever built. Not that there is anything wrong with a 7 Remington Mag but a lot of the guys who use them think they are long range death bolt on elk. They are not anymore effective on elk at long range than are your .270 .30-06 class round in real life field conditions that is. On paper they do appear better but not that much better if actually know what you are looking at.

It all boils down to knowing the limitations of the your rifle and sticking to them.

Beentown
June 16, 2013, 04:51 PM
I am a bow hunter so a .270 seems like cheating. Plenty of rifle. The fun for me is how close I can get to game not how far I can shoot them.

mokin
June 16, 2013, 05:05 PM
Interesting thread. Back in the 80s when elk season rolled around there was plenty of talk among us in high school as to which was better. The .30-06 or the .270. I know of plenty of elk that were killed by both. As someone stated above, I would prefer a heavy .30-06 but wouldn't feel unprepared with a .270. I mean how much farther do you want to drag that carcass anyway.

What H&Hhunter said about the much bigger cartridges was very insightful. Thanks.

@Beentown, it's pretty cool to be within a stones throw of such a big animal isn't it.

MTMilitiaman
June 16, 2013, 05:12 PM
I completely agree. It's a disease. Elmer Keith infected people into believing you need a .33+ caliber magnum for elk. He even called the .270 a decent coyote rifle, which is of course ridiculous. Elk aren't any tougher than when we used to slay them with pointed sticks. They aren't uparmored nowdays. While they are large, tenacious critters people need to dispel the notion that you need a piece of field artillery to pursue them, or that such a piece is even beneficial in most circumstances.

mljdeckard
June 16, 2013, 05:25 PM
I have a .270 and an -06, I would use either, but I would defer to the -06 because I can push a heavier bullet. But I'm not taking hunting shots past about 300 yards. If I can't do it with a .270, I probably can't do it with anything else either.

blindhari
June 16, 2013, 05:33 PM
My brother-in-law got his once in a lifetime buffalo tag here in Arizona after waiting 19 years. Knowing he was only going to get one chance he took his elk rifle, a 1970 Remington 700 in 270. He had used it for everything for over 40 years javelina, coyote, bear, mountain lion, white tail, mule deer and an awful lot of elk. I guess you could call that practice. I had pneumonia so we bought our son plane tickets to go on the hunt. According to our son 3 shots into a moving herd of 13 Buffalo. Cold winter conditions in snow, all 3 turned out to be heart shots when they cut it up. Yeah a 270 will take an elk.

blindhari

HEAVY METAL 1
June 16, 2013, 06:04 PM
"Elk were almost eradicated with the .30-30 Win, and people used to kill them with .54 and .36 caliber Hawkens."

and they are still killed today with arrows....

X-Rap
June 16, 2013, 06:50 PM
"Elk were almost eradicated with the .30-30 Win, and people used to kill them with .54 and .36 caliber Hawkens."

and they are still killed today with arrows....

What was done in the old days had little to do with sport and there was probably no lack of wounded and lost animals.
Today primitive elk hunts are conducted during a very vulnerable time for the elk in which they can literally be called into touching distance if one is not careful.
Elk are much different to hunt during the general rifle hunts in unlimited areas so as not to expect a standing shot at 50 yds to be common.
The 270 is on the low end of what I would advise a new hunter with its main drawback being the 150gr max bullet weight most common in a factory load. H&H summed up the case of elk rifles well and I would add that close encounters during rifle season happen very quickly and by close encounters I'm talking 200yds or less so one needs to be fast and know your target and the anatomy of the beast because while at broadside they are not bullet proof but at other angles you might think so.

Beentown
June 16, 2013, 07:44 PM
My final thought...

If you can't kill an elk with a 270 from 250 yards having a larger rifle caliber isn't going to help (even though I prefer .308).

blindhari
June 16, 2013, 07:46 PM
The same brother in law that uses 270 for elk took a great trophy bull this last winter using a bow. I admit that he got within bow range but I would like to add that he and his youngest son went out a half dozen times before season and were in position at 4 am and waited in 10 degree weather for a shot within his capability. My last elk was after scouting for three days and taken at under 50' with a 45-70. It boils down to knowing your equipment and your skill. Come to think of it, it really was my last elk, I am too old to run the hills and pack out an elk anymore.

blindhari

Just a note to H&H: I am not sure it really matters where you hit an elk with a 405 gr 45-70 from Buffalo Bore, just like Texas hog at under 100', it goes right on through. Buffalo Bore ain't cheap but they do seem to be final.

H&Hhunter
June 16, 2013, 07:54 PM
Just a note to H&H: I am not sure it really matters where you hit an elk with a 405 gr 45-70 from Buffalo Bore, just like Texas hog at under 100', it goes right on through. Buffalo Bore ain't cheap but they do seem to be final.

There are a bunch of calibers that'll do that. A hard cast Buffalo Bore round out of a .45-70 is sure enough one of them! I would expect nothing short of full length penetration on a soft critter like an elk with that load out of a .45-70.

I've seen big boar hogs shot with that exact combo at 100 and even pushing 200 yards they sail right through at that range too.

RPRNY
June 16, 2013, 09:45 PM
I enjoyed my 270 back in the day but i'm now a 7mm-08 owner and if this lady can kill 2 hogs with one shot of a 7mm-08 then i couldn't think an ELK is any thicker skinned then 2 boars..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAirkHM_i20

That there bride of yours is a KEEPER! ;-)

Sent from my Kindle Fire using Tapatalk 2

txcookie
June 17, 2013, 06:57 AM
well I guess bowhunting has ruined me but I dont take less than ideal shots. either its s slight qtring shot or broadside for me. Even on small whitetail with my 30.06 I wait for my shot or letem walk. in other words I dont take shots that could deflect an arrow or have ALOT of animal to go through. I personally feel a regular old 130 core lokt at 200 broadside would do just fine on most any critter in the northen America's. This year I blew through a deer and a couple of good hogs which is by no means an Elk but certainly WAS 12 inches of excellent penetration on some tough pork.

I am not bashing the Magum gang just saying its not needed and has been proven by thousands of riflemen already.

Thanks for all the post:o

Lj1941
June 17, 2013, 07:13 AM
Did Jack O'Connor have premium bullets available to him when he was extoling the virtues of the. 270 Win? I am asking because I am not sure.

Arkansas Paul
June 17, 2013, 10:17 AM
If you can't kill an elk with a 270 from 250 yards having a larger rifle caliber isn't going to help

That's true if the animal is standing broadside, but if he's quartering one way or the other, that might not be so accurate. I'm not saying the .270 won't do the job on elk, it certainly will, especially with todays premium bullets. But I don't think anyone would disagree that on quartering shots where 20+ inches of penetration through heavy muscle and bone is needed before the bullet ever even reaches the vitals, a little more umph is not a bad thing. I know a lot of people say that they wouldn't take a quartering shot, but if I'm flying halfway across the country for the hunt of a lifetime, I don't want to be limited to only taking the perfect shot.

H&Hhunter
June 17, 2013, 10:26 AM
As mentioned you have to have the discipline to adjust your hunting style to your equipment limitations. The problem is that many folks don't or don't know what those limitations are.

Outlaw Man
June 17, 2013, 11:07 AM
In my opinion, be it elk, deer, triceratops, whatever, the decline of hunting skills and shooting ability has brought on the "need" for bigger, farther shooting cartridges. There was a time when .30-'06 was more than enough for anything in North America, but now you shouldn't even take one deer hunting.

I don't get why people get these .33x ultra super mega magnum cartridges they're really afraid to shoot and cost $12/red (or is that .22 LR, now?), so the only trigger time they get is shooting game or once a year to make sure the scope is still on. Get you a .243 or a .270 and shoot the fool out of that thing. You'll bring in as many or more game than that guy with the sore shoulder.

SimplyChad
June 17, 2013, 11:14 AM
I know its a different class but the 1 elk I have taken was quartering away and I took it with a 45/70. 60ish yards from a 1895G DRT. I have no doubt that a quality 270 will do the deed if you get in close and pick your shot.

Arkansas Paul
June 17, 2013, 11:34 AM
I know its a different class but the 1 elk I have taken was quartering away and I took it with a 45/70. 60ish yards from a 1895G DRT.

.45-70 if loaded correctly offers as much penetration as a .458 Win Mag. It's an absolute beast and a lot of folks forget just how crushing it can be.

In my opinion, be it elk, deer, triceratops, whatever, the decline of hunting skills and shooting ability has brought on the "need" for bigger, farther shooting cartridges.

Decline in shooting skills has nothing to do with wanting a magnum caliber for longer range shots. I love my .30-06 and my .280 Rem. I don't own a magnum, so I'm not a magnum bandwaggoner. However, I realize that if the range is 300 yds+ that the magnums do offer an advantage in that they are flatter shooting, thus decreasing the estimation of holdover from the equation.
I agree 100% that on the majority of game, elk included, that if you are inside of 300 yds and the animal is broadside, the magnums don't offer much advantage. However some people are capable of shooting game at much longer ranges, and they might actually realize the benefits of a mag.

zonzin
June 17, 2013, 11:49 AM
Shot placement. The .270 is fine.

Bio-Chem
June 17, 2013, 11:53 AM
If Jack O'Connor took a slew of Elk with basic 130 grain cup and core bullets, i'm sure that the .270 with today's premium hunting bullets (in either 130, or 150 grain weight) will work just fine 60 years later. Put the bullet in the right place. Only take shots your abilities allow you to take, and dine on Elk steaks while the know it all's on the internets tell you that you need more gun.

Coltdriver
June 17, 2013, 11:54 AM
My Grandfather exclusively shot elk with a 270, so did my Father. Anyone that says a 270 is not enough for an Elk is either trying to sell you something or they are uninformed.

gunnysmith
June 17, 2013, 01:05 PM
The only rifle I ever used on Elk was a 600 Mohawk 6 mm Rem.
Shots ranged from 60 yds to 275 yds
It was a fine mountain rifle, short and light, and extremely accurate

Outlaw Man
June 17, 2013, 02:44 PM
I'm not arguing the utility of certain magnum cartridges for long range shooting. What I'm saying is it's a decline in hunting skills that forces those longer shots. It's deteriorated shooting skills (and maybe hunting skills) that necessitate more umph on close range shots.

If you can't kill it humanely, wait for a better shot. I realize the rare exception of guys shooting at game 1000+ yards away. If you're really one that's skilled enough to do it, go get your 300 Win Mag and take 'em out.

Maybe it's just a product of being in Arkansas, but most people I know of with those big guns have never taken a shot over 200-250 yards.

Bio-Chem
June 17, 2013, 02:52 PM
And most those guys shouldn't be taking shots past that distance Outlaw.

Lj1941
June 17, 2013, 03:10 PM
Since I see Mr Bell's name mentioned here, what calibers did he use to kill all of those elephants? I remember reading his book while I was still in high school- middle 1950's. As I recall he used a. 303 British, 6.5 Manlicher, and 7MM Mauser.I don't think he had any special bullet. The one thing he did have was an uncaney skill for placing his shots in the
brain.That my friends is what it is all about.SHOT
PLACEMENT!:evil:

Arkansas Paul
June 17, 2013, 03:25 PM
Maybe it's just a product of being in Arkansas, but most people I know of with those big guns have never taken a shot over 200-250 yards.

That's absolutely correct, and its why I don't own a magnum rifle. The farthest deer I ever killed was 175 yds and the .30-06 bullet landed exactly where the cross hairs were resting. No need for a magnum there. Everything else has been 125 or closer, most closer.
I do have an example of an experience where a magnum didn't help. My brother and I were sitting on a gravel road, (lease road, inside the gate, so perfectly legal) wanting to bag a doe for camp meat and one stepped out. Now if you've never looked at a deer down a long road, distance can be tricky. I estimated the range at 250-275 yds. His 7mm Rem mag was laying across the hood. I helped sight it in, so I knew that with its 3" high at 100 yd zero, I shouldn't have to hold over at all at that distance. I put the crosshairs on her shoulder and touched it off. I saw dust kick up underneath her and she was gone! I stepped it off and it was over 425 yds from where we were to where the bullet impacted.
So even with a magnum, range estimation is key. Obviously I'm not very good at it.

As far as hunting skills, I really don't care about that. I hunt deer so I can kill them and eat them, not to feel like Dan'l Boone. :) Don't get me wrong, I think we should put effort into hunting and be ethical hunters at all times, but I'm not messed up if I can't get super close.

Since I see Mr Bell's name mentioned here, what calibers did he use to kill all of those elephants?

I think he killed 45724908752409572439 elephants with a .177 air rifle. :evil:

H&Hhunter
June 17, 2013, 03:28 PM
In my opinion, be it elk, deer, triceratops, whatever, the decline of hunting skills and shooting ability has brought on the "need" for bigger, farther shooting cartridges.

Agree and disagree. Some folk try to make up for poor shooting by getting a bigger (Usually a faster round not bigger, which does nothing for you if you can't hit 100 yards with your .270 a 7RM is not going to make you magically start making hits at 500 yards) rifle and they are going to wrong direction. However a man can become just as accurate and capable with a heavier caliber if he wants to put the time in. I can shoot a sub 2" 5 shot group at 20 yards with a .375H&H or a .404 Jeffery and I can shoot a controlled pair at 25 yards that are touching with a .470 NE double rifle or a .500 NE. It just takes desire and practice to get good with the bigger stuff. But in all reality the .375H&H in a properly fitting rifle has less felt recoil than most .300 mags IMO.

However, I realize that if the range is 300 yds+ that the magnums do offer an advantage in that they are flatter shooting, thus decreasing the estimation of holdover from the equation.

I have a totally different take on why one would shoot a larger caliber with a heavier bullet. The "magnums" I shoot are not uber flat zingers. They are in fact as slow or slower than your average .30-06 or especially your 130 gr .270. The .338 or the .375 push a 250 or a 270 gr bullet @ about 2700 FPS maybe a bit less or a bit more depending on your rifle. So for me it's not about extending your max point blank range at all. In fact my MPBR is less or the same than the rounds mentioned above. To me it's all about having an increased shot opportunity envelope as I tend to like to ghost timber and bust elk in their beds. I won't play that game with a .270 and 130 gr loads it's the wrong hammer for that particular job. However with my chosen caliber I am more than capable of making those 300+ yards shots too. All I am doing is increasing my utility a bit for my style of hunting. I also find the heavier slower bullets to do way less meat damage than your zappers like a .270 with a 130 gr bullet.

I am NOT suggesting that anybody go out and trade in your .270 for a .375 or a .338 not in the least. But in the 30+ years that I have been elk hunting this is the rifle and bullet combo that I have found to be best for my style of hunting. I am NOT a cross canyon long range elk sniper. That is where most guys get in trouble no matter what they are shooting. You'll notice that my preference is heavy .308 to .375 diameter with a good sectional density at a moderate velocity. And I've killed several dozen elk over the years with that combo. I've also killed elk with .270's and .30-06's and .308's once again I simply adjust my style of hunting to match my given equipment.

Elk steaks while the know it all's on the internets tell you that you need more gun.
Many folks will suggest that you use a heavier round in fact some guides and outfitters will require it. The Mescalero Apache reservation has a .30 cal Minimum on elk hunts. But I haven't seen many "know it all's" on this site that demand that you use more gun. Folks just like to share information based on their unique experiences or in some cases unique fantasies;)(it is the internet after all). I enjoy these kinds of conversations because I like to see what makes other hunters tick.

H&Hhunter
June 17, 2013, 03:32 PM
Since I see Mr Bell's name mentioned here, what calibers did he use to kill all of those elephants?
Anybody who makes the Bell quote also needs to read Taylor and Stewart who both mention how many times Mr. Bell wound up running for his life or loosing bulls after wounding elephants and not being able to make a stopping shot on a fast retreating wounded bull with his puny caliber choice.;):D

Arkansas Paul
June 17, 2013, 03:34 PM
H&Hhunter, that doesn't matter. The fact is he killed elephants with a 7x57 Mauser, so its automatically an ideal elk cartridge and anyone who even considers buying a magnum round for any game animal has sawdust for brains. :evil:
That joke isn't meant at anyone in this thread. I just think its funny that some think anything over .243 is overkill for any animal and on the other side you have people thinking it takes a .338 magnum to kill a whitetail. I think both sides are crazy honestly.
Shoot what you want to shoot and let everyone else do the same. It's their money and their shoulder.

Outlaw Man
June 17, 2013, 03:37 PM
I've shot prairie dogs in Wyoming at longer distances than I'd probably ever get to shoot at a deer here. Out there, range estimation was a killer for me. There's almost nothing to compare to. I really had to lean on my hunting buddies who lived there.

When we were coyote hunting in the same area, I saw what I thought was a pack of coyotes, but on further investigation, it was a herd of antelope 3-4 times farther than I thought it was. My Dad said it was a good thing I didn't shoot, but there's no way my little .223 would have made it that far with any danger of the antelopes even noticing. :p

H&Hhunter
June 17, 2013, 03:41 PM
Shoot what you want to shoot and let everyone else do the same. It's their money and their shoulder.


Exactly with our wonderful choice of bullets and scopes and rifles now days there really are very few wrong answers. So shoot what you like. The most important thing is just to get out and enjoy yourself with your chosen rifle.

Arkansas Paul
June 17, 2013, 03:48 PM
Exactly with our wonderful choice of bullets and scopes and rifles now days there really are very few wrong answers.

Absolutely. Especially if you handload.

The_Armed_Therapist
June 17, 2013, 07:12 PM
I'd be content with a .270 on everything up until brown bear. Even then, it's probably more than adequate... but being "dangerous," I'd just prefer more certainty. People just have personal preferences that they want to sell, that's all.

CPLofMARINES
June 17, 2013, 07:22 PM
Jack O'Connor did just fine with it. As a matter of fact I
Have been considering one. A 25/06 will kill an Elk, shot
Placement and YOUR effective range is paramount.

SEMPER Fi

Mike Sr.
June 17, 2013, 07:44 PM
Just my thoughts:

In a Mountanous terrain, canyons, valleys, grassland spaces at the tree line...etc....wind can play hell with any trajectory but especially with light bullets.

My 6x6: 580-lasered yards, up hill, thru the right shoulder bullet came to rest under the hide of the left shoulder.... 338 Win Mag/200 grain.

A 338 can do everything a 300WinMag, 30-06, 270, 308,, 30-30, 25-06 can do but those can not do everything a 338 Mag can do!

H&Hhunter
June 17, 2013, 08:09 PM
I'd be content with a .270 on everything up until brown bear. Even then, it's probably more than adequate... but being "dangerous," I'd just prefer more certainty. People just have personal preferences that they want to sell, that's all.

And your preference, obviously is a .270. My question to you is how many elk or moose or bison have killed with your .270? You say you'd be content with a .270 up to brown bear, but you'd be content hunting moose or bison or elk with a .270 based on what actual field experience? I'm not trying to dog on you I'm genuinely curious.

My 6x6: 580-lasered yards, up hill, thru the right shoulder bullet came to rest under the hide of the left shoulder.... 338 Win Mag/200 grain.


Plain and simple you don't take that shot with a .270 Win. It goes back to knowlng your equipment and it's inherent limitations.

My furthest ever elk kill was on a bull at 443 yards with a .375H&H shooting a 285 gr Speer Grand Slam it was last afternoon deal on a perfectly calm day with a rock solid rest. The bull was quartering away at about a 3/4 angle two more steps and he would have been gone forever. I hit him behind the last rib and the bullet exited the point of the off shoulder dropping him instantly. I wouldn't dream of taking that shot with an 06 or a .270 or even a .300 mag of any type. Once again going back to knowing your equipment and your capabilities with it.

txcookie
June 18, 2013, 06:59 AM
mikesr 580 Way to far for my talents....

Sam1911
June 18, 2013, 07:59 AM
The 270 has been around WAY longer than all the belted Mags so in its time it was the go to Elk cartridge,,,,
Just a point of trivia...

.270 Winchester, released in 1925
.375 H&H Magnum, released in 1912

and....

.400/.375 Belted Nitro Express -- 1905

Jcinnb
June 18, 2013, 08:26 AM
Not an elk hunter, not even a hunter anymore.

Recently purchased a 25-06. Have done a ton or reading on the caliber and a lot of elk have been killed with it. Of course you have to be able to shoot straight!

Surprised me. You should be fine, given reasonable ranges and reasonable target presentation.

Good Luck.

H&Hhunter
June 18, 2013, 10:34 AM
Just a point of trivia...

.270 Winchester, released in 1925

The same year in fact that the .300H&H AKA the .30 Super was released.

j1
June 18, 2013, 10:44 AM
An ex elk guide named Skeeter Skelton killed numerous elk with a 243. However being a guide he spent a lot of time in the field and could pass up anything but a shot he really liked. It was said that he never wounded an elk. Is a 243 enough gun? It was for Skeeter Skelton.

I own and have shot a 30 06 for close to fifty years and think that it is enough for me. Now the trick is to see an elk in Pa. I said that as a joke but there ARE ELK in western Pa.

fdashes
June 18, 2013, 10:46 AM
You should see what it does to a chigger (whatever the hell that is). Sounds like something the Northeast doesn't need but we have plenty of .270 just in case.

Certaindeaf
June 18, 2013, 11:02 AM
The only rifle I ever used on Elk was a 600 Mohawk 6 mm Rem.
Shots ranged from 60 yds to 275 yds
It was a fine mountain rifle, short and light, and extremely accurate
I had one of those in .243.. a superb weapon. I wish I had one in .350 Remington Magnum.. just for the fun of it.

X-Rap
June 18, 2013, 11:04 AM
I hadn't heard that Skeeter Skelton was an elk guide, he lived out his last years in Deming NM which is about 50-60 miles from elk country and prior to that spent his time in Texas. Are you sure it wasn't his son Bart? NM State Trooper and later Customs man or DEA I think.
Either way I would have some reservations hiring a guide or outfitter that packed a 243 for elk.

The_Armed_Therapist
June 18, 2013, 12:54 PM
And your preference, obviously is a .270. My question to you is how many elk or moose or bison have killed with your .270? You say you'd be content with a .270 up to brown bear, but you'd be content hunting moose or bison or elk with a .270 based on what actual field experience? I'm not trying to dog on you I'm genuinely curious.

LOL... Never shot a .270 in my life. I don't even really have a preference. I use a .30-06 and .44mag, but that's kind of just because it's what I have. I don't even live where there are elk, moose, and bison. So no, never shot anything with the .270. However, math, science, and case history are our friends. A .270 will obviously kill those animals.

The_Armed_Therapist
June 18, 2013, 12:58 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=hY0w1c-gf18

I don't have the skill to take this shot. If I did have the skill, I personally still wouldn't. However, 688 yards with .243... clean kill.

X-Rap
June 18, 2013, 03:48 PM
Obviously late season and the elk have started to regroup into herds, it's been my observation that they don't spook nearly as easy when in their winter mode.
Good tracking snow, calm animals, capable caliber under the conditions and hopefully a practiced shooter and you have a positive outcome.
Same elk in regular season moving through heavy pinion juniper with no snow and a 243, not on a bet, even at 100yds.

Dr.Rob
June 18, 2013, 04:06 PM
270 is plenty of gun. To me the 25-06 is too light. Yes the are both based on the 30-06 but the 25's bullet options tend to be light/fast varmint rounds. Penetration is important in big game. Yes plenty of white tail and even mulies have fallen to it, but I feel it's light. 270 (imho) should be loaded with the heaviest bullet you can get for elk.

Arkansas Paul
June 18, 2013, 04:14 PM
My furthest ever elk kill was on a bull at 443 yards with a .375H&H shooting a 285 gr Speer Grand Slam it was last afternoon deal on a perfectly calm day with a rock solid rest. The bull was quartering away at about a 3/4 angle two more steps and he would have been gone forever. I hit him behind the last rib and the bullet exited the point of the off shoulder dropping him instantly. I wouldn't dream of taking that shot with an 06 or a .270 or even a .300 mag of any type.

This is what I'm talking about. The .270 and .30-06 are certainly capable of taking elk and moose when the conditions are good. No doubt about it.
However, in instances like this, they are inadequate. IF you find yourself in a situation such as the one H&H Hunter mentioned here and you're armed with a .270 or '06, you ABSOLUTELY MUST pass on the shot.
I agree that the round is capable of taking elk. I just don't think it is ideal for the job. The ideal round for the job is one that will get the job done when conditions aren't perfect.

Dr T
June 18, 2013, 04:43 PM
I used to read the same sort of arguments when I was in high school in the 60's. There are a number of schools of thought.

One school holds that anything smaller than a 375 H&H is inadequate for anything larger than a jackrabbit (and that you aren't a MAN if you can't shoot 100 rounds from one off a bench in one sitting).

One school is that the bullet size doesn't matter as long as the bullet is fast enough.

A third school is that a well-constructed bullet with the proper placement can kill just about anything.

I adhere to the third school and read the other arguments for amusement.

Just remember the guy that killed a bunch of elephants with a 7 x 57...

T.R.
June 18, 2013, 04:52 PM
My Dad (1922-2004) killed several fine bulls with his 300 Savage levergun. None got away!

TR

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/rushmoreman/elkinforestsized-1.jpg (http://s26.photobucket.com/user/rushmoreman/media/elkinforestsized-1.jpg.html)

H&Hhunter
June 18, 2013, 07:05 PM
LOL... Never shot a .270 in my life. I don't even really have a preference. I use a .30-06 and .44mag, but that's kind of just because it's what I have. I don't even live where there are elk, moose, and bison.

Armed Therapist,

I appreciate your honesty. Math and science are our friends however with no actual field experience it is impossible to correctly visualize and process many of the elk hunting scenarios of which I have spoken. As they say an ounce of experience is worth a ton of book knowledge. Which is precisely why when I read gun and caliber advice on the net I sincerely appreciate an honest answer as to the writers background.

IF you find yourself in a situation such as the one H&H Hunter mentioned here and you're armed with a .270 or '06, you ABSOLUTELY MUST pass on the shot.
I agree that the round is capable of taking elk. I just don't think it is ideal for the job. The ideal round for the job is one that will get the job done when conditions aren't perfect.

Exactly,

The difference between adequate under the right conditions and totally capable. As has been mentioned multiple times here lighter calibers are perfectly adequate if you are willing and have the discipline to only take the right shots. Unfortunately many folks don't. I'm sure none of the ethical hunters that take the time to post a debate here on THR would ever do so. But it sure as heck happens every year.

Just remember the guy that killed a bunch of elephants with a 7 x 57...

Sure enough. And of course their are multiple hundreds of elephant killed every year with FN park service rifles in 7.62 NATO during cull and PAC operations. The secret is to have perfect knowledge of where the brain is in an elephants head and to be able to hit football sized brain from any angle. The secret is to shoot several dozen elephants and get really good at finding the brain and to get really close before shooting. Once again and as mentioned waiting for the perfect shot presentation for your given caliber and the limitations it presents.

Using a small caliber on elephant is an art form really as you can only effectively kill them with a perfect head shot. Young rangers are required to use a heavier caliber generally a parks issue .458 WM until they perfect the art of finding the brain. It should also be mentioned that of all the elephant hunters of the era and of all the elephant hunters since then and of all the professional elephant hunters operating today none with the exception of Bell and two three others ever recommended anything under a .400 cal firing a 400 gr bullet and most were .500 cal + guys by choice. And the simple reason is that if you have to stop an elephant or make a shot on a retreating elephant nothing less will do the job.

Some recommended reading/viewing if you are interested in what current day professionals have to say on the subject.

http://www.ronthomsonshuntingbooks.co.za/bookspublished.html
Ron was a cropping officer and killed 5 times more elephant than did Bell.

http://books.google.com/books/about/Guide_to_Ndlovu.html?id=hON-GQAACAAJ
Richard Harland was a also a cropping officer with several thousand elephant kills under his belt

http://www.cmsafaris.com/hd-filming-photographic-safaris/dvd.htm
The instructional elephant hunting video is a must if interested in the process and weapons best suited for hunting elephant. The interview with Ian Nyschens is worth the price alone. Buzz is a top professional who specializes in elephant hunting. he put together the very best instructional video I've seen on elephant hunting. There is also a graphic demonstration on the difference between a .470 NE and a .500 NE when it comes to stopping an elephant filmed in this DVD. It's impressive.

(I'd recommend his book "Months of the Sun" but I just noticed that they are selling from $250 to nearly $1,000. I guess I need to hang on to my signed copy that I bought for $60.00!!)

Robert
June 18, 2013, 07:57 PM
As others have said .270 is plenty gun if you work with in its capable range. I chose .375H&H for my elk rifle after many long conversations with H&Hhunter. Is it any "better" than a .270 or 06? Nope. But it give me more flexibility and anyone that knows me will attest, I like to be different.

AJumbo
June 18, 2013, 07:59 PM
The .270 is plenty of elk rifle. My elk have fallen to a .300 Winchester (1), a 30-06 (2), a 45/70 (1, my first elk), and a .54 caliber round ball (3). They all died with one shot, and were shot within 100 yards. The .300 didn't kill it's elk any deader than any of the rest. Dad has gone four for four, not only with the same 30-06, but from the same box of cartridges. Shot placement is key.

The thing that gripes me about the super-magnum cartridges is that instead of elk HUNTERS, we get the woods crammed full of elk VARMINTERS, taking shots they should never attempt, using rifles they haven't practiced with because the rounds are "too expensive to to plink with." Besides, the ad copy says the muzzle blast decalcifies the elk's spinal column and they drop dead at the sound of the shot. No worries, right?

Thus endeth my rant.

silicosys4
June 18, 2013, 08:19 PM
An ex elk guide named Skeeter Skelton killed numerous elk with a 243. However being a guide he spent a lot of time in the field and could pass up anything but a shot he really liked. It was said that he never wounded an elk. Is a 243 enough gun? It was for Skeeter Skelton.

Hmmm, must be a different Skeeter Skelton than the gentleman most of us are familiar with. He considered the .243 to light for DEER.



http://www.darkcanyon.net/Skeeter_Skelton_Rifleman.htm

On a related note, the first elk I killed....a 30-06 put it down...but a much smaller caliber was used to dispatch it. I have carried a .270 while hunting elk, but definitely with the knowledge that I was range limited and marginal shots were not on the menu.

My father loves to tell the story of his last elk. He took a 75 yard head shot at a medium bull. He says he knew he hit it because he saw the bull go down on its front knees when he shot. The elk got back up, and walked another 100 yards, then dropped. When my father had the skull steamed for mounting, the entry wound was in the ear canal, the exit wound was through the center of the forehead. I have seen the skull to verify, and remember as a child when it came home, it had a bullet hole square in the middle of its forehead.
That elk took a 180 gr. rn bullet @ 2600fps or so right to the ear, that bullet rattled around inside, then blew a hole through the front of its head. And it STILL walked a football field away to die.
Stories like that are what breeds magnum wars, lol

Myself, I hunt with a .300 winmag, but am rethinking that philosophy. The elk here live in cover and go to cover to die. The only DRT shots I have personally heard from successful hunters have all been neck shots. Elk are allergic to the neck shot, it would seem. Tracking around here seems to be a given. There is a lot to be said about punching a big hole low in its body cavity, so the body cavity fills up with blood and starts leaving a trail. People here shoot low on elk for the lower lungs and heart so they get an early blood trail. If you shoot to high up on the animal, the philosophy goes, even with both lungs holed, the body cavity will fill up with blood before the animal starts leaving a trail, and be harder to track.

.300 winmag and 7mm magnum are the biggest elk calibers here,
then 30-06,
then .338 winmag,

there are actually a lot of bigger calibers used here on elk as well. We have Roosevelt elk, they get pretty big...about 1k lbs for a bigger bull, often more.
Some people go so far as to use 458's and 416's. The guys ive talked to like that usually cite a desire to drop an animal dead where it stands so they dont have to track and pack it out.

The_Armed_Therapist
June 18, 2013, 08:41 PM
This is the first time I've EVER heard of using something like the .375H&H on elk. I've mostly heard .270, .30-06, .308, .300mag, 7mm mag, .338mag, and .45-70. Never the H&H, though. LOL

silicosys4
June 18, 2013, 09:06 PM
This is the first time I've EVER heard of using something like the .375H&H on elk. I've mostly heard .270, .30-06, .308, .300mag, 7mm mag, .338mag, and .45-70. Never the H&H, though. LOL

My buddies and I have had that discussion. We all seem to agree that a .375 of some sort is the best overall caliber, but since none of us reloaded at the time we solidified our caliber selection, and we had never seen a box of .375 ammo of any kind in anything but specialized gun shops,
we all ended up with calibers you have mentioned.

H&Hhunter
June 18, 2013, 10:42 PM
This is the first time I've EVER heard of using something like the .375H&H on elk. I've mostly heard .270, .30-06, .308, .300mag, 7mm mag, .338mag, and .45-70. Never the H&H, though. LOL

Armed therapist,

Well....Since the .338WM is just like the .375H&H I guess you have just contradicted yourself just a little bit.:)
The .338 WM and the .375H&H both produce about 4,000 Ftlbs they both do it with bullets in the 225 gr to 300 gr range and they both just about duplicate a .30-06 in trajectory. So when you break it down they really aren't that much different.

You must not have read much Elmer Kieth....:D

The .375H&H is more popular on elk than one would expect. It is NOT as common as the rounds you've mentioned. Just like a .300H&H isn't as popular as a .300WM.

35 Whelen
June 18, 2013, 11:54 PM
An ex elk guide named Skeeter Skelton killed numerous elk with a 243. However being a guide he spent a lot of time in the field and could pass up anything but a shot he really liked. It was said that he never wounded an elk. Is a 243 enough gun? It was for Skeeter Skelton.

I own and have shot a 30 06 for close to fifty years and think that it is enough for me. Now the trick is to see an elk in Pa. I said that as a joke but there ARE ELK in western Pa.
I think maybe you're thinking of Les Bowman.

35W

The_Armed_Therapist
June 19, 2013, 10:01 AM
Well....Since the .338WM is just like the .375H&H I guess you have just contradicted yourself just a little bit. The .338 WM and the .375H&H both produce about 4,000 Ftlbs they both do it with bullets in the 225 gr to 300 gr range and they both just about duplicate a .30-06 in trajectory. So when you break it down they really aren't that much different.

They're both quite powerful, yes, but the .375 will consistently give more than the .338 mag. I was actually thinking ballistically of .338 Federal when I said that, though. LOL

Arizonagunrunner
June 19, 2013, 10:17 AM
My 1980's Remington ADL 270 does what it is required to do. "Work". And it has never let me down or feel lacking for something more. Sure I have my Savage 110 in 30-06, and I love that gun just as much.
But I can tell you that the ole 270 will drop an elk just as well as all the other calibers being mentioned. I have shot 6 elk in my life. All in the Flagstaff AZ area. 4 bulls and 2 cows. The 270 was used for one bull and one cow. Both were shot at about the 200 yard range. Both were taken with one shot broadside. And the ammo being used was Remington green/yellow box 130 PSP Core Lokt
The bull went 40 yards and dropped. The cow ambled about 5 yards and dropped. I would not think twice about hunting anything in the lower 48 with a 270. Shot placement is the most important part of pulling the trigger.

Arkansas Paul
June 19, 2013, 10:27 AM
But I can tell you that the ole 270 will drop an elk just as well as all the other calibers being mentioned.

Broadside at 200 like you shot them, I agree 100% with you.

At 443 quartering away at a 3/4 angle, not so much.

As I said before, the best tool for the job isn't one that will perform when conditions are just right. The best tool for the job is one that will perform well under less than favorable conditions.

We have elk here in Arkansas and they issue permits. If I'm lucky enough to draw one, I'll have no qualms about taking my .30-06 or .280 on the hunt. I agree that they are good tools for the job. But if you can't see the benefits of a larger round for elk hunting in various terrains, you just aren't looking for them.

mdauben
June 19, 2013, 10:49 AM
At 443 quartering away at a 3/4 angle, not so much.

Personally, I know my limitations and would not consider taking a shot at almost 450 yards, even full broadside. From my observations at the local range before and during hunting season, its my opinion most hunters should not be planning for shots at that range, either.

IMO, why bother with a gun that can take out an elk quartering at 450, if the shot is beyond the shooter's capabilities? If one is an exceptional shot, that's different but as I said I don't see a lot of hunters who are.

35 Whelen
June 19, 2013, 10:54 AM
This could be summed up so easily. YES, the .270 is will do. In fact any cartridge that will put an expanding type hunting bullet through both lungs of an elk will do. Animals simply cannot live very long with hemorrhaging lungs.

I killed the first of my bulls with an unglamorous 7x57mm loaded with an equally unglamorous 154 gr. Hornady cup and core bullet. The next three have been killed with a 35 Whelen as will all future bulls.

If a fella likes big cartridges, awesome, go for it. Just make sure you can hit with them.

One thing to remember: the distance of your trip, how long you saved for it, or how much it cost you, or how high you climbed the mountain doesn't give you the right to sling bullets at animals 1/4 mile or further away.

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/Hunting/PA170062a.jpg (http://s60.photobucket.com/user/308Scout/media/Hunting/PA170062a.jpg.html)

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/Hunting/bullls2.jpg (http://s60.photobucket.com/user/308Scout/media/Hunting/bullls2.jpg.html)

514 yards away and two days before I had spent a few hundred dollars on diesel dragging several thousand pounds of trailer, horses, mules, feed, hay, saddles, panniers, tack, guns and ammunition to get me and my $575 dollar bull tag to this point. I did NOT feel I had the "right" to take a cross-canyon shot through shifting winds at these beautiful beasts.

Use a gun with which you can hit, and be ethical in your hunting practices.

35W

35 Whelen
June 19, 2013, 10:56 AM
Personally, I know my limitations and would not consider taking a shot at almost 450 yards, even full broadside. From my observations at the local range before and during hunting season, its my opinion most hunters should not be planning for shots at that range, either.

IMO, why bother with a gun that can take out an elk quartering at 450, if the shot is beyond the shooter's capabilities? If one is an exceptional shot, that's different but as I said I don't see a lot of hunters who are.
Very, very wise. Thank you.

Arizonagunrunner
June 19, 2013, 11:31 AM
What amazes me is all these fine hunters here talking about 400 + yard shots on game like Elk. Who does that? And how many regular hunters practice these amazing feets through out the year before hunting season. I am a pretty good shot. I shoot regular. But to blast away at 400 +. ON BIG GAME the size of elk? I think there is a lot of fish story telling going on here. Now I am sure there are several hunters that do make these shots, but it is the exception, not the rule.
I would never try and take an elk or anything else at 400+ yards. I would say the average hunter wounds more then kill at that distance then harvest their game. And my 270 would not be the ticket for a 400 yard shot on elk. I have hunted everything AZ has to offer. Elk, Black Bear, MT Lion, Mule-Whitetail-Couse deer, coyote,fox, bobcat, varmints, javelina, pronghorn and more. I have never had to shoot past 320 yards. 90 % of all my shots are well inside 200yards. I have hunted for 35 years. Lots of game has been dropped. So I think the "long range" shot most folks talk about is wishful thinking.

Arkansas Paul
June 19, 2013, 11:47 AM
Personally, I know my limitations and would not consider taking a shot at almost 450 yards, even full broadside. From my observations at the local range before and during hunting season, its my opinion most hunters should not be planning for shots at that range, either.

IMO, why bother with a gun that can take out an elk quartering at 450, if the shot is beyond the shooter's capabilities? If one is an exceptional shot, that's different but as I said I don't see a lot of hunters who are.

I don't disagree with any of that.
I would not attempt a shot of that magnitude either, but that has to do with my abilities.

So I think the "long range" shot most folks talk about is wishful thinking.

I agree that the average shooter shouldn't attempt those long shots. But the people who are capable and skilled enough to do it shouldn't be disparaged when they do. My inability has nothing to do with you or anyone else's ability.

And I agree that the .270 and '06 class rifles will get the job done on elk just fine if you're not one of those guys who can pull off those shots, and I am not one either.

40 rod
June 19, 2013, 12:12 PM
These " Enough Gun" threads are lots of fun. Let us extrapolate the notion that a .556 62gr @ 3000fps is woefully underpowered for a 200lb deer. A nice bull Roosevelt Elk will weigh 1000LB , or -deer x5 . It would then stand to reason that a 310 gr slug at 3000fps is way to small for elk and that a 50BMG is about right.

I feel that a .556 (with the right bullet) is ok for deer and that a .243 is ok for elk , but of course more is better. Most will agree that a .300 winchester is a good choice for elk.

H&Hhunter
June 19, 2013, 01:25 PM
They're both quite powerful, yes, but the .375 will consistently give more than the .338 mag.

Armed Therapist,

A bit more energy in close. .037 more diameter and better bullet selection for the .338 for shooting longer range. All in all on paper the .338 is a better balanced elk round than the .375. In reality they are so close in performance a hunter can't tell the difference in the field.

The reason I use a .375H&H over a .338WM? Because I bought my first .375H&H when I was bush flying up in Alaska on the advice of some old time hunting guides and bush pilots and like them I chopped my barrel to 20" so it the rifle would fit behind and across the rear seat on a Cessna 180 where it lived anytime I wasn't using it. I noticed real quick that the rifle performed on game like none other that I had previously used. My previous rifle was a M-77 in .270 Win and a .257 Bee. I could hit game with the H&H at any distance I was comfortable shooting game with the .270 and the H&H would punch through just about any animal from just about any angle making a nice straight line hole and doing less meat damage than my .270.

A bit latter in life I started hunting Africa. And since the .375H&H is legal for DG in any country in Africa it makes a great do it all rifle. Why change to something else when you know the rifle you are shooting like it's an extension of your body? It and the .338 are two calibers that give you up close thumping and "brush busting" ability and are excellent longer range rounds as well. And that is a rare combination.

I don't like the .300 mags or the 7mags or the big fast . 338's like the RUM or the Weatherby or any of the super high velocity rounds because at close range they just tear the hell out game leaving huge portions of meat blood shot and inedible.

I do the majority of my hunting in dark timber and get lots of shots inside of 100 yards on a moving critter. And of course I don't pass over the open areas where a longer shot might be the norm. And for my needs I've got the perfect tool for the job.

I also wind up hunting with a my .30-06 quit a bit and it's never failed me yet on elk. But I do not take snap shots with it on moving elk. As has been mentioned multiple times now I adjust my hunting style to the rifle I have in my hand at the time. The last elk I killed with a my 06 was at 233 yards standing broadside. The bullet was a 180 Barnes TSX that penetrated from just behind the on shoulder and exited the middle of the off shoulder. That elk took two or three steps then did a back flip and died.

The very next elk I killed was in a thick aspen grove and the herd had been spooked by a non listening hyper active member of our hunting party. In any case the elk started "lining" out of the grove at a fast trot. I picked an open lane in the aspens about 150 yards down the hill and waited for one of the bigger cows in the rear. They were trotting away at about a 3/4 angle. From a seated position I waited until my cross hair filled with elk knowing that my 270 gr TSX out of my .375 would give full penetration no matter where I hit the big cow. As she trotted through the open lane and my cross hairs passed her shoulder I pressed the trigger.

She went about 30 yards and fell the big X bullet hit her a little far back behind the diaphragm. Penetrated the liver lungs went behind the heart broke three ribs and the off shoulder and stopped under the hide of the off shoulder.

You simply don't play the game that way with a .30-06 or a .270 on elk.

H&Hhunter
June 19, 2013, 01:40 PM
Invariably I'll hear from the some folks when I mention .375H&H and elk. "Oh man that thing is going to blow an elk all to pieces." Nope actually just the opposite it does very minimal meat damage. Far less than your .270 with a 130 gr cup and core bullet.
here is a picture of the carcass of a cow I killed several years ago. the rifle was my 20" .375H&H the bullet was a 270 gr TSX at a MV of about 2700 FPS.
Entrance wound. Like they say you can eat right up to the hole.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y187/GTAllyn/Elkentrancewound.jpg (http://s5.photobucket.com/user/GTAllyn/media/Elkentrancewound.jpg.html)
Exit wound. As you can see she was standing steeply uphill from me. This shot was at about 80 yards and once again in thick dark timber. And of course with this shot presentation a .243 would have worked just as well. Turn that elk about 40 deg and not so much on the 6MM or a .270 with a 130 gr Cup and core bullet. Now take that same .270 with a 150 gr controlled expansion bullet and at that range you are still in business.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y187/GTAllyn/Elkexitwound.jpg (http://s5.photobucket.com/user/GTAllyn/media/Elkexitwound.jpg.html)

X-Rap
June 19, 2013, 02:20 PM
I shoot one of the hotter .33's but have had similar results. I also hunt with a 45-70 and am well pleased with the results within its limitations.
I am also no stranger to the potential of the 06 and its spawn and have taken a number of elk with a 280. One such was at about 80 yds and another at just over 400, the 400 yd shot through the chest was one of the most spectacular I have seen, at impact he launched and flipped to his back and didn't move again. It was as broadside as you can get and done with an 18" 760 carbine.
I am a huge believer in knowing your gun, proving it at the range both off the bench and in field positions out to whatever range you can responsibly handle.
The gun or distance one shoots has no bearing on his ethics or abilities. Slobs are people and they come in all varieties.
I have been in the game long enough to have come to some strong conclusions, like most that has come from a variety of sources, some from others many from myself in personal experience as well as observation. I don't run with a lot of slobs so most of my input has been positive and two conclusions are irrefutable IMO, bring enough gun and know your limitations.
It is up to us as individuals to determine those answers but if failure is frequent then you need to adjust.

35 Whelen
June 19, 2013, 03:31 PM
Invariably I'll hear from the some folks when I mention .375H&H and elk. "Oh man that thing is going to blow an elk all to pieces." Nope actually just the opposite it does very minimal meat damage. Far less than your .270 with a 130 gr cup and core bullet.
here is a picture of the carcass of a cow I killed several years ago. the rifle was my 20" .375H&H the bullet was a 270 gr TSX at a MV of about 2700 FPS.
Entrance wound. Like they say you can eat right up to the hole.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y187/GTAllyn/Elkentrancewound.jpg (http://s5.photobucket.com/user/GTAllyn/media/Elkentrancewound.jpg.html)
Exit wound. As you can see she was standing steeply uphill from me. This shot was at about 80 yards and once again in thick dark timber. And of course with this shot presentation a .243 would have worked just as well. Turn that elk about 40 deg and not so much on the 6MM or a .270 with a 130 gr Cup and core bullet. Now take that same .270 with a 150 gr controlled expansion bullet and at that range you are still in business.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y187/GTAllyn/Elkexitwound.jpg (http://s5.photobucket.com/user/GTAllyn/media/Elkexitwound.jpg.html)
It's amazing how much damage a cup and core bullet can do. The following pictures are of a bull Dad shot a few years ago with his Whelen. A Speer .358" 250 gr. SP loafing along @ 2510 fps MV. He shot the bull at 44 yards. I've never seen so much blood on the ground from a running animal.

Entrance wound:
http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/Hunting/Bullethole.jpg (http://s60.photobucket.com/user/308Scout/media/Hunting/Bullethole.jpg.html)

Where the bullet stopped:
http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/Hunting/Shoulderdamage.jpg (http://s60.photobucket.com/user/308Scout/media/Hunting/Shoulderdamage.jpg.html)
All that was left of the bullet:
http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h6/308Scout/Hunting/PA200003.jpg (http://s60.photobucket.com/user/308Scout/media/Hunting/PA200003.jpg.html)

35W

Certaindeaf
June 19, 2013, 04:00 PM
Today, WWEKD?. Elmer Keith. Back in the day he liked him some powerful rifles.
What do you think he'd like these days?

H&Hhunter
June 19, 2013, 04:13 PM
I don't know WWEK do but it's said that before he died in 1954 Bell mentioned that he'd have used a .308 if it was around in the day.

X-Rap
June 19, 2013, 11:04 PM
I think one of Elmers .33's was a colaboration with another fellow that ended up being closely copied by the 338-378 Weatherby. (of which I am fond of)
The caliber battle sure didn't start here, reading the Keith/OConnor letters is quite enjoyable and FWIW none here can hold a candle to those two when they got after it.

35 Whelen
June 19, 2013, 11:13 PM
I think one of Elmers .33's was a colaboration with another fellow that ended up being closely copied by the 338-378 Weatherby. (of which I am fond of)
The caliber battle sure didn't start here, reading the Keith/OConnor letters is quite enjoyable and FWIW none here can hold a candle to those two when they got after it.

You're on the right track. Elmer's collaboration was with Charles O'Neil and Don Hopkins resulting in the 333 OKH. The cartridge was essentially a 338-06...only with .333" bullets.

Elmer was a strange dude in my opinion. He thought the 270 was too light for deer, yet thought nothing of lob .44 caliber pistol bullets at them.:rolleyes:

35W

MinnesotaFats
June 19, 2013, 11:33 PM
my first and only moose was killed by a .270 at what we figured to be 310 yards. im a very confident man in my rem. 700 .270 handloads. that being said, i believe if a guy has enough target practice/skill/confidence with an applicable caliber, he'll do just fine...but thats a givin'.

X-Rap
June 19, 2013, 11:48 PM
The 338-378 KT is the one I was thinking of, he also had a hand in the 340 Weatherby.

MinnesotaFats
June 19, 2013, 11:49 PM
btw 35 Whelen, you got the best sig line on here.

toiville2feathers
June 20, 2013, 12:58 AM
In the late fifties and early sixties Jack O'Connor made the Grand Slam on North American Big Game. All twentyfive species were shot with a model 70 win in a .270 cartridge. That includes the Grizzly bear, Brown Bear and Polar bear. Each month for over 2 years he wrote an article in Outdoor Life about the hunt that he had. I read every article,and each article had a full page artist rendition of the animal subject. I hung every picture of the animals on my bedroom wall. They were there for many years fueling my dreams and future hunting plans. I so wanted to have a job like jacks.
The bullet that Jack wrote about in his stories that I can remember were winchester silvertips
His wifes rifle of choice was a 7 X 57 and she shot lots of game with that rifle.
Those were wonderful stories that jack wrote about. He made the model 70 and 270 famous, no doubt about it. Jack was writing and hunting at atime when game was plentiful. Matter of fact he considered the white tail deer the most challenging trophy to kill because they were so few. The mule deer where thick as jack rabbits. now today the opposite is true.

Certaindeaf
June 20, 2013, 01:43 AM
I don't know WWEK do but it's said that before he died in 1954 Bell mentioned that he'd have used a .308 if it was around in the day.
I think he died in 1984

H&Hhunter
June 20, 2013, 01:54 AM
Bell died in 1954. That's who I was referring to.

tc54
June 20, 2013, 06:21 AM
the 270 win is more than adequate for elk. anyone who says or writes to the contrary is just showing their own ignorance or prejudice. sure, there are better elk cartridges, but have no doubt, the 270 has and will continue to kill elk. know your rifle, know your limitations, and get your knife ready. it's as simple as that! good hunting.

Arizonagunrunner
June 20, 2013, 08:21 AM
Jack O'connor never killed a Brown bear or Polar bear with a 270. He did shoot several grizzlys with his Winchester 270 though.

Certaindeaf
June 20, 2013, 08:54 AM
Bell died in 1954. That's who I was referring to.
Ah, I should have known otherwise but I thought you were referring to the Elmer.

RubenZ
June 20, 2013, 03:06 PM
I was told the .270 was enough gun for any game in North America.

Paul7
June 20, 2013, 05:07 PM
Am using a 6.5x55 156 gr. for a cow elk hunt this year.

txcookie
June 21, 2013, 07:16 AM
I have total confidence in the 270 for any critter in North America! I dont feel I would need any special load or premium bullet. I think the 130 grain Core lokts would be just fine. I also wont be shooting hard angles nor will I shoot past my abilities. If I were to go on some dream elk hunt, I would certainly feel good taking my 270. I usually bowhunt so getting close is all I really know. I have plenty of discipline in shot selection and have no issue passing on shots I dont know I can make. Thanks for all the post

X-Rap
June 21, 2013, 09:10 AM
What state are you hunting? What season? Private or public? Remote pack in or drive to area?
All these questions can/will determine just how close and how good of a shot you may get at an elk. I've hunted areas that you'd do well to see one standing as they run a gauntlet of hunters traveling between their feeding and bedding areas. Other places I've hunted have them as close to what their natural state could be.
Your 270 will be fine if you indeed are willing to pass on shots until the right one comes along. I have seen many fall to Core Lokts although 130 is far lighter than I would use, 150 would be the minimum.

PhillipM
June 21, 2013, 09:32 AM
Just a point of trivia...

.270 Winchester, released in 1925
.375 H&H Magnum, released in 1912

and....

.400/.375 Belted Nitro Express -- 1905
You left out the Super Thirty aka .300 H&H Magnum, introduced in 1925.

X-Rap
June 21, 2013, 10:03 AM
Some seem to think that "magnumitis" only started recently. Man has worked to improve his weapons since he picked up a sharp stick.
I feel we are pretty much at the top of the hill when it comes to wringing out performance from hand held firearms at this point but maybe I'm wrong.

Arkansas Paul
June 21, 2013, 10:45 AM
I feel we are pretty much at the top of the hill when it comes to wringing out performance from hand held firearms at this point but maybe I'm wrong.

I bet they thought the same thing when they first started using archery equipment too. :)

X-Rap
June 21, 2013, 11:09 AM
That may be Paul but there are very few "revelations" in the gun world in the last few decades as far as calibers and ballistics go.
Men have had to work very hard to wring out a few extra FPS or Ft Lbs of energy from the metallic cartridge in recent years.
Scopes, stocks, and other accessories continue to improve as well as bullet construction but the guns pretty much are limited to what a man can carry in the field.
Look at the king daddy of them all, the 50BMG which is hardly a easily carried gun for field use. It was developed almost 100 yrs ago.

txcookie
June 22, 2013, 06:59 AM
Phillip m

is the 300H&H belted?

natman
June 22, 2013, 09:55 AM
Phillip m

is the 300H&H belted?
Yes.

H&Hhunter
June 22, 2013, 10:01 AM
You left out the Super Thirty aka .300 H&H Magnum, introduced in 1925.

Phillip,

Have a look two posts under Sam's, post Number 58..;)

The same year in fact that the .300H&H AKA the .30 Super was released.

mdauben
June 22, 2013, 12:03 PM
I bet they thought the same thing when they first started using archery equipment too.
That's just it, it took a quantum leap in technology (from man powered bows and spears to chemical powered rifles and shotguns) to offer a real improvement in performance of "ballistic weapons". I agree with the previous poster that we've come pretty close to the limits of chemical powered projectile weapons. Its going to take another quantum leap in technology (man-portable rail guns, practical combat lasers or something we don't even see yet) to get really significant improvements over what we can do now.

jmr40
June 22, 2013, 06:21 PM
Its going to take another quantum leap in technology (man-portable rail guns, practical combat lasers or something we don't even see yet) to get really significant improvements over what we can do now.


The "quantum leap" in technology is better bullets that have been introduced recently. We have had the technology to shoot small light bullets at hyper velocity for a while now, but still needed heavy bullets that would hold together and work on larger game.

We can now shoot a 100 gr 243 that will hold together, penetrate, and do the damage to game that it used to take a 180 gr 30-06 to do. The small fast vs heavy slow debate is quickly swinging in favor of the small and fast camp.

While the 270 has always been a viable elk round, today it and the 30-06 are quickly becoming overkill for even elk size game.

X-Rap
June 22, 2013, 11:04 PM
While the 270 has always been a viable elk round, today it and the 30-06 are quickly becoming overkill for even elk size game.
Sorry I just don't put that much faith in a bullet.

35 Whelen
June 23, 2013, 11:47 AM
We can now shoot a 100 gr 243 that will hold together, penetrate, and do the damage to game that it used to take a 180 gr 30-06 to do. The small fast vs heavy slow debate is quickly swinging in favor of the small and fast camp.

While the 270 has always been a viable elk round, today it and the 30-06 are quickly becoming overkill for even elk size game.

No way. Regardless of the quality of the bullet a .243" bullet will never be a .30 caliber bullet. If you've ever skinned, quartered and packed a mature bull elk, you'll understand just how large they are and why they take a good bullet of reasonable caliber to kill.

35W

H&Hhunter
June 23, 2013, 12:32 PM
Agreed with 35 Whelen.

skoro
June 23, 2013, 01:05 PM
... but I have three buddies who go up to Colorado each November to hunt elk. The 3 rifles they use are 270, 308, and 30-06. I've never accompanied them on their hunts, but they say they've never lost an elk. I don't know what range or angles they take their shots from, but each seems well satisfied with his weapon.

That said, I've seen elk up close on a number of occasions. They're huge impressive beasts. Seems to me that a magnum caliber would certainly be appropriate.

natman
June 24, 2013, 03:26 AM
The "quantum leap" in technology is better bullets that have been introduced recently. We have had the technology to shoot small light bullets at hyper velocity for a while now, but still needed heavy bullets that would hold together and work on larger game.

We can now shoot a 100 gr 243 that will hold together, penetrate, and do the damage to game that it used to take a 180 gr 30-06 to do. The small fast vs heavy slow debate is quickly swinging in favor of the small and fast camp.

While the 270 has always been a viable elk round, today it and the 30-06 are quickly becoming overkill for even elk size game.

While there certainly have been some serious advances in bullet technology, they've changed shooting an elk with a 243 from irresponsible stunt to merely a bad idea.

Even if your premise that a 243 with a premium bullet is equal to a 30-06 were true, there's still no net advantage. Why not use a 30-06 with a premium bullet and actually take advantage of the new technology?

txcookie
June 24, 2013, 06:44 AM
243 is pushing IMO. However I wouldnt be afraid to use one at 100 yards or so with a broadside shot.


I Bowhunt and I know a 243 can cause ALOT more damage than a XX75 2315.

H&Hhunter
June 24, 2013, 09:29 AM
I bow hunt too. That doesn't make a .243 a decent elk rifle.

Arkansas Paul
June 24, 2013, 09:38 AM
No it doesn't. And I LOVE the .243 round.
On a big elk, moose or big bear, I would rather shoot them with an arrow. I don't think a .243 will give you a pass through with a 1 1/4" wound channel all the way through.

X-Rap
June 24, 2013, 10:13 AM
Anyone who has bowhunted larger animals like elk should understand exactly what this "enough gun" discussion is all about.
Shot placement and weight are key to success when bow hunting elk. Hit one in the shoulder and you may not penetrate further than the bone shoot one there with a 243 and you might break the bone but that might be the extent and you might lose that animal. Shoot the same animal with a larger/heavier 7mm + and you will reach the goods and add magnum velocities and you have a hole on both sides from which to bleed.

Kachok
June 24, 2013, 01:13 PM
If there was ever any doubt about the effectiveness of a 270 Win on large game it was erased a long time ago, while it would not be my first choice it certainly would do the trick in a pinch. Bullet construction really comes into play when using small calibers for large game, Partitions, Hot Cores, TSXs and such offer a huge advantage over softer constructed bullets, shot placement is paramount, there is simply no room for error with a 6.5mm or 270 cal while they will penetrate deep enough to pass through the vitals they will have shed much of their speed and the remote damage will be slim. Anything larger then mulies I swap to 30 cal or larger as a general rule.

H&Hhunter
June 24, 2013, 02:50 PM
Anything larger then mulies I swap to 30 cal or larger as a general rule.
Me too! That is a very sound policy.

Mr. T
June 24, 2013, 02:57 PM
The .270 Win is an excellent rifle cartridge. It's an offshoot of the 30.06 which is the most utilitarian cartridge made by man. Jack O' Connor swore by the .270 Win and he took plenty of Elk with that cartridge as well. I've known a fair number of hunters from Wisconsin who've travelled out West to harvest their Elk with their .270's. It's a fine gun and anyone who tells you differnt simply doesn't know what the hell they're talking about!

Mr. T
June 24, 2013, 03:17 PM
That being said are there other weapons that might kill quicker...sure there are. However if you aren't a gun collector and only have one rifle, besides the 30.06, the .270 Win would be my next choice in rifle calibers for hunting.

Bio-Chem
June 24, 2013, 03:20 PM
the 6.5 is used on moose in Europe all the time. you aren't under gunned with a .270 on Elk.

Arkansas Paul
June 24, 2013, 03:24 PM
the 6.5 is used on moose in Europe all the time.

As I've said before, the .270 will certainly do it. I just don't think it's ideal.
However, the simple fact that something is done, isn't automatically good justification for doing so. Rednecks in the hills of Arkansas kill deer with .22s all the time. Doesn't make it a good idea.

Certaindeaf
June 24, 2013, 03:31 PM
Jezebel Jane would always just strangle them. ?

X-Rap
June 24, 2013, 10:08 PM
I know I will pay for this but O'Connor was one of the original shills.
If I was offered the plum hunting trips he did I'd swear by a slingshot if they wanted me to.
I just think that needs to be cleared up since he has been mentioned a time of two.

Art Eatman
June 24, 2013, 10:31 PM
Six pages oughta be more than enough for this particular go-round of discussion on this subject.

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