Elk calibers

Discussion in 'Varminter & Hunting Forum' started by Performance Shooting, Nov 1, 2018.

  1. Performance Shooting

    Performance Shooting Silver $$ Contributor

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    any one has any real world experience with smaller calibers on ELK? If so what caliber's and how far have you made real world kills..I'm talking like 260 rem, 6.5 creedmoor, 308 Win..... etc...mid sized calibers...Thanks for your input....
     
  2. JRS

    JRS Gold $$ Contributor

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    The first elk I killed in unit 1 in Arizona was with a 257 Weatherby using the Nosler partition.
     
  3. Alex Wheeler

    Alex Wheeler Gold $$ Contributor

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    Put the bullet in the lungs at reasonable distance and you will be ok. Make a poor shot and hit bone, you will be in trouble with a big elk. I like .300 mags and up for true elk rifles. To me an elk rifle is one that will get the job done even if the wind blows you into heavy bone. It about odds. I am sure someone has punched a shoulder with a .243, but the odds are against it. Limit those caliber to 200 yards, make a good lung shot and you will have a dead elk. Just dont think they are "long range" elk cartridges.
     
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  4. seymour fish

    seymour fish

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    270/130 gr Sierra spbt. 100% from 300-450
     
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  5. Scott Harris

    Scott Harris Gold $$ Contributor

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    308 WIN 165 grain Sierra. 300 yards, 2 elk last year. Never had a problem with the 308 but we keep our max distance under 350 yards. 284 WIN would be ideal for longer shots.
     
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  6. Downhill

    Downhill

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    Plus one on the 308 with a 165 gameking. 273 yards according to the Leica. Mature elk cow, looked like right there was where she was supposed to go down. Neck shot, legs gave way and straight down on the belly. Done right there.
     
  7. rockhound78

    rockhound78

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    Neighbors daughter has shot 3 Elk, using 3 rounds total. Longest 287 (lazered)yds. 243 win. w/partition slug. She is a good shot and can put the bullet where it needs to go.
     
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  8. jepp2

    jepp2 Gold $$ Contributor

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    To me it really comes down to:

    - how far do you have to go to hunt and how much will the hunt cost?
    - are you willing to forego a shot where the angle isn't what you really want?
    - are you hunting on public lands where there will be a lot of competition?

    The margin of error is less with a smaller caliber. They can certainly kill when shot placement is very good and the animals aren't pressured. But given the right circumstances, and the willingness to forgo certain shots, it will work.
     
  9. Ken

    Ken Silver $$ Contributor

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    243 and up used to be the rule in NM. Not sure if it has changed.
     
  10. Mulligan

    Mulligan Gold $$ Contributor

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    I have witnessed several bang/flop shots on cow elk with a 150 partition launched out of a 7-08. Same with a 308 and Berger’s........
    CW
     
  11. 69mach

    69mach Silver $$ Contributor

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    My wife took a large barren cow last year. She used a 308, admittedly she didn't make a great shot but we were lucky to recover it. Plus we had to quarter and pack it an extra 300 yards. If she made the exact same shot with my 300 win mag or my 340 weatherby I believe it would have put her down and would have gotten another shot off before she got into the trees. 6 and 6.5 will undoubtedly kill elk all day long but imo I prefer larger cartridges bc perfect shots hunting don't always present themselves like paper targets do.
     
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  12. nmkid

    nmkid Gold $$ Contributor

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    300 Win. Mag. and 165 gr. Swift A-Frames.
     
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  13. SPJ

    SPJ Silver $$ Contributor

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    30.06 is the smallest cartridge I've hunted Elk with.
     
  14. oldroper

    oldroper

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    I traded my 300mag for 30-338mag on bull elk tag here in Co. Cow elk use 30-06.

    Units I hunt are little more open and with all beetle kill, things change.
     
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  15. Prairiedogger

    Prairiedogger

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    I have four elk kills with my 6.5 Creedmoor. ranging for 200yds out to 698yds. It will do the job if you can.
    Numerous elk with a Rem 280.
    More then that with the 30.06.
    It's not the size.
    It's the placement of the shot.
     
  16. Bc'z

    Bc'z Gold $$ Contributor

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    I'm not picking a fight here but I'm not understanding why the heavier caliber for bulls over cows.
    Aren't they both elk. Before you tell me bulls are bigger. Roosevelt's are bigger n Rockies.
    And I've seen some HUGE Roosevelt cows.
    Mostly what I hunt
     
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  17. bloc

    bloc

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  18. bloc

    bloc

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    At some range, a .300 RUM becomes a .30-06. At some range, a .30-06 becomes a .30-30. I wonder how this logic might apply to your question.
     
  19. Bc'z

    Bc'z Gold $$ Contributor

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    I'm just asking why the difference in cart for different sex of animal.
    Yes they are both .30's but why ?
    Edit. I wouldn't think twice bout dumping a bull with my 06' even quarting.
     
  20. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn Silver $$ Contributor

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    If I am dropping $600 on an out of state tag along with another ungodly sum of money to get there and get in the field for a once in a lifetime hunt, I would go with my favorite elk caliber. The seemingly forgotten 338 Win Mag pushing a 210gr Nosler Partition. It is a hard hitting flat shooting cartridge that has put a lot of meat in the freezer for me. Sometimes you need the power to break bones and anchor an animal the size of a small car.
     

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