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You Are Headed to Africa on Safari. Which Big Game Rifle Do You Buy?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Kynoch, Sep 9, 2012.

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Which Big Game Rifle Would You Choose if Your Choice was Limited to:

Poll closed Dec 8, 2012.
  1. Browning Safari (in .458 Win. Mag.)

    13 vote(s)
    9.3%
  2. CZ 550 (in .458 Win. Mag.)

    51 vote(s)
    36.4%
  3. Interarms Mark X (in .458 Win. Mag.)

    7 vote(s)
    5.0%
  4. Kimber Model 89 (in .458 Win. Mag.)

    5 vote(s)
    3.6%
  5. Remington Model 700 (in .458 Win. Mag.)

    15 vote(s)
    10.7%
  6. Ruger No. 1 Tropical (in .458 Win. Mag.)

    12 vote(s)
    8.6%
  7. Weatherby MK V (in .460 Wby. mag.)

    17 vote(s)
    12.1%
  8. Winchester Model 70 (post '64 in .458 Win. Mag.)

    20 vote(s)
    14.3%
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  1. TrickyDick

    TrickyDick Member

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  2. HankB

    HankB Member

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    Limited - a hippo, 2 cape buffalo and 1 lion. (I shot my leopard with a .30/06). No problem.

    I'm far from an "expert" . . . maybe some would say I have just enough experience to be dangerous, and I couldn't argue. ;)

    But a lot of people with a lot more experience than I'll ever have also like the .375 for dangerous game.

    I see nothing wrong with using a .416, .458, or .470 if you like . . . but for a typical sportsman of today who will have limited African hunting opportunities, a .375 he can shoot well, loaded with good ammo, is a good choice.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  3. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    It's a GREAT choice. However depending on where and what you are hunting IE dangerous game in the thick jesse of the Zambezi that is infested with PO'ed cow elephant I think one of the .416's or a .404 is a better choice. In fact if thick skinned DG is the primary goal I think it's a better choice anyway.

    There is no right or wrong answer here this just my $.02.
     
  4. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    I'm really not sure why anyone would push the .375 so hard? Seems like programmed lore more than anything. Sure, if one got a really good deal or was given a rifle chambered in .375 then it might be the way to go but otherwise what's the big advantage over say a .416 Remington or a .458 Lott?

    It's certainly not ballistics. Recoil? Really? That's not a factor -- at least in my case. What else? Ammo availability? C'mon... What else?
     
  5. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    I'm really not sure why anyone would push the .375 so hard? Seems like programmed lore more than anything? Sure, if one got a really good deal or was given a rifle chambered in .375 then it might be the way to go but otherwise what's the big advantage over say a .416 Remington or a .458 Lott?

    It's certainly not ballistics. Recoil? Really? That's not a factor -- at least in my case. What else? Ammo availability? C'mon... What else?
     
  6. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    The .375H&H offers a much flatter and more useable trajectory for use in long range plains game hunting. Or DG hunting. It allows for those 150 and even 200 yard buff shots that occasionally present themselves on a once in a lifetime trophy bull.

    So however does a .416 and it does so with a greater authority than a .375H&H. A .458 Lott becomes a bit tricky over say 150 yards or so though I have done it in the past on several back up shots.
     
  7. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    It's not unlike the .30-06 strokefest going on in the other thread. Except that some actually do recognize the .375's limitations on the bigger critters.
     
  8. HankB

    HankB Member

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    Let's face it, 99%+ of the folks who will hunt Africa at all will not be making a career as African pachyderm hunters - in fact, a great many may only make it to Africa once or twice in a lifetime, so the .375's versatility makes it a more sensible choice for most folks than a real heavy.

    Ammo availability is a consideration; on my few trips I haven't had a problem, but I've met folks whose guns arrived but whose ammo was delayed; there's some chance of finding .375 or .458 ammo over there but the chances of finding .416 or .470 are somewhat less.

    Someone who makes annual or semi-annual trips to the Dark Continent after the Big Five will have a different perspective . . . but then again, that person won't be seeking advice from forums like this.

    If a person wants to and can handle the extra recoil, there's nothing wrong with a good rifle shooting a .416, .458, .470 or larger round. But as I stated earlier, for a visiting sportsman whose African hunting will be limited, a .375 is a good choice.
     
  9. BigG

    BigG Member

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    Win Model 70 375 H&H as many others have already said.
     
  10. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    I really appreciate the input and I agree with your comments. However I don't think it's the reason for the plethora of recommendations for the .375 on this forum.
     
  11. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    No thanks, as I already said.
     
  12. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    I really appreciate this forum and I have learned a great deal but I think the last rifle I would buy from what I listed is the CZ 550 based on what I have read here and elsewhere since I created this thread. Same for the .375 HHM chambering.
     
  13. finnwolf64

    finnwolf64 Member

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    Then maybe you should re-read the replies, re-look at your poll results & refer to post #2:neener:
     
  14. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Member

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    No, H&H gave the real reason. Most others are just repeating what they've heard. Not that the .375 is not a capable cartridge. It's better than it ever was with modern bullets but if I'm buying a rifle to take on a dangerous game hunt (other than lions and leopards), it'll be at least a .40 caliber. When you're spending big money on your trip anyway, the cost of a new rifle (unless it's a custom or handmade British elegance) is really a fraction of the overall investment. So get the most you can handle and practice, practice, practice. Your life just might depend on it. If it's your only trip to the dark continent, they make great deer/hog guns with gas checked cast bullets loaded to moderate velocities.
     
  15. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    What do you think made me reject the CZ and the 375?
     
  16. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    What versatility? A .4xx isn't going to cost any more. And the recoil (at least to me is not significantly different.) Where exactly in the Americas would someone make use of a .375 HHM after going to Africa on safari and not a .458 Lott Mag for instance?
     
  17. HankB

    HankB Member

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    Carry a .375 for, say, Cape buffalo, and if you see a 60" kudu 300 yards across a river bed and you're probably in better shape to take him than if you're carrying a .458 Lott. That's what I mean by versatility. Get separated from your ammo, and you're more likely to find .375 locally. Go to Alaska after grizzly or Kodiak bear, and a .375 is a fine choice - perhaps better than a .458 for reasons already mentioned unless you're in very dense brush.

    If you simply want a larger round, I say go for it; the .458 Lott in particular is a good choice since, in a pinch, you can use .458 Win Mag in it. If I knew - knew! - that I'd be making a habit of shooting only elephant in thick cover, I might go to something like that myself.
     
  18. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

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    no nitro
     
  19. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    I wouldn't shoot a CB with a .375 HHM, but that's just me personally.

    .458 Winchester Magnum ammo has been around for 50 years. It's not a rare wildcat that's any less ubiquitous than the 375 HHM, even in Africa. I would indeed prefer the Lott over the WM but I'll have to see what's available.
     
  20. gunner69

    gunner69 Member

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    The 9.3x62 is my favorite large game rifle. It started out in 1908 and is as good today as it was back then. You will be able to find ammo for it most anywhere large game is shot. I hand load for it myself as I save quite a lot of $$$$ by doing so. Very efficient round and it won't jar you teeth out of their sockets when you touch it off. It has been and is a favorite of African hunters.
     
  21. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    Until recently the only countries it legal to use for DG hunting was Zimbabwe and South Africa.
     
  22. 45crittergitter

    45crittergitter Member

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    Something other than a .458. :)
     
  23. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

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    Why wouldn't you want 5000+ft/lbs? Maybe clue me in here.
     
  24. Kynoch

    Kynoch member

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    Some people just have the desire/need to pollute wonderful threads...
     
  25. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

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    Yea, I hear you. For one, yep, I'm jealous and wish I could go too!
    Would I could, I'd feel pretty good with a ghost ringed and ivoryish front .458WM bolt gun with not a backward safety. That's for sure.
     
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