375 Wby - Good Choice?
Heck. I dithered too long on which 416 to get, and just found a great deal on her pretty little sister, hit the bid button, and now have a 375 Wby DGR.
Someone bought it and never shot it, and sold it with 5 boxes of Wby 300gr NPs for $2.5K. So, I basically got the rifle for $2K. A big part of me wanted to go bigger, like the 416, but, with that deal, I thought I could use it on my Alaskan hunt and decide to stick with it next year in S.A., or go bigger. Maybe I will move up through the calibers until I reach my limit.
I assume the 300gr NPs moving at 2,800fps would be almost ideal for brown bear. Nosler also makes a 260gr Accubond loading (3,000fps), but I'm leary of using a bonded lead-core, non-partitioned bullet on anything big and feisty.
Aside from my rife choice (largely based on my familiarity with Wby Mark Vs), did I make a good choice? I will have to either rely on A-Square or get some other hand-loaded 300gr solids for buffalo. If I get some hand-loaded ammo, is a 300gr solid bullet or TSX or similar moving at 2,800fps MV good enough for buffalo?
Has anyone had any experience with the A-Square solids (for buffalo) or Accubonds (bear)?
Thanks in advance for any comments.
Marine Hawk , so you settled for the kid brother .375 WM , damn good decision I should say fantastic caliber and a beautiful rifle.
I got my first buff with a clean frontal chest shot at 80 yards with A-Square monolith 300 grains solid exiting the left hip , could u imagine the impact and the velocity I had used my PHs .375 Wby Mag. its a great cartridge try it.
A-Square offers serious hunting loads suitable for all types of big game.
Made from a single alloy, the Monolithic Solid maximizes penetration and delivers a higher velocity and less pressure than most ordinary FMJ solids. It has no separate jacket. This ammunition is new production, non-corrosive, in boxer primed, reloadable brass cases.
Muzzle Velocity: 2700 fps
Muzzle Energy: 4856 ft. lbs.
I think you have done justice by choosing a immaculate caliber and you can take on any game with a well placed shot in the world.
Happy Hunting Mate
Well, I was planning on taking a 375 Weatherby to Tanzania for buff this year. so I have faith in it working. I have a load worked up my Model 70 that puts 300 grain Barnes Banded solids and TSXs in a sub-inch group at 2700+fps.
The only reason I changed my mind was I have a 416 Rem Mag that I have MORE faith in!:)
Seriously, it'll be fine.
I would also have someone load up some Barnes Solids rather than ASquare or just use 300 grain TSXs.
The 375 Weatherby is an excellent all around rifle IMO. It will handle anything from plains game at a distance to Cape Buffalo. I have a customized Winchester Model 70 in 375 Ackley that has the same ballistics as the 375 Weatherby, and it's my favorite "reach for" rifle for Africa. I have about 250 handloads for it with the old 270 grain Barnes XLC coated bullet that groups in 1/2" moa. I'd have no qualms using it for Cape Buffalo. I've made one shot killls on game with it from a Warthog at 260 yards, to an old stink bull Giraffe at 150 yards, and as most anyone who'se hunted them will tell you, Giraffe can be tough.
Thanks for all the comments guys.
I think I'll stick with the NPs for the bear hunt and then figure out what to do about Africa. I'm tempted by the incredible down-range ballistics of the Accubond, but I'm not sure how that bullet would perform on large bony creatures.
On another note, would it be a bad idea to mount a bipod on the barrel-mounted sling stud? If it's not a terrible idea, mitigating factors may be that I would/could sight in using the bipod, and the barrel is fairly heavy on that rifle. Or is it just a bad idea anyway? I've never owned a rifle with a barrel-mounted sling stud before.
Marine Hawk , for open plain hunts the bipod is recomended , but for bush and thick vegetation keep the rifle free for the shouder ,as this caliber I think is not very hrd hitting on the shoulder , so its a suggestion keep the rifle free with any accessories for a well balanced accurate shot do not go in for bipods as the DGR has a near bull barrel.
Marinehawk..........the .375 Weatherby is an excellent cartridge. The 300 Nosler Partition will do a fine job on your bear, I have been using them in for years in a wimpy old .375 H&H and has put a lot of big bears on the ground.
I think the Accubonds would be fine for plains game but my experience with them so far in several calibers indicates they may be a little too soft for buffalo. I would stick with the .300 Partition or consider going to a Swift A-frame or the Barnes TSX. Another good bullet to consider is the 300 grain North Fork. Barns putts out a good solid, Nosler has solids now and North Fork also have solids.
Personally I would not mount a bipod on the barrel stud for two reasons. One is that you are then effectively resting on the barrel and this is not a good idea as it exerts pressure upwards on the bottom of the barrel. If you really want to use a bipod, install an extra sling swivel stud on the forend of your stock for that purpose. Two..in all likelyhood your PH will be using shooting sticks and you would be better off to get a set and practice with those. JMHO. Also as Monish suggests, I would not want any extraneous garbage hanging off my rifle when hunting buffalo in the thick stuff.
Originally Posted by Skyline
Thanks for the info. I completely agree about the NP or Accubond on buffalo. I probably didn't explain this well, but I would never use an Accobond, and probably even a Nosler Partition on a buffalo, unless the NP was a 500gr protected point version in a 450 Lott/Win or something. I'm not saying others shouldn't do it, but on my first buffalo hunt, if I'm using a 300gr bullet, I either want a solid or at least one of the shanked mono-metal bullets, like the TSX.
I was just considering whether to use the N. Partition or Accubond on my brown bear hunt. I've started reading a fair amount of hunters' reviews of the Accubond on large game, and I'm almost convinced to give it a try. It definitely should be good on plains game:
375 WEATHERBY – WBY 260 GRAIN ACCUBOND – (0.473 B.C.; 255 yd zero)
Rng / Vel. / Impact / Ener. / Drift
000 / 3000 / -1.75 / 5196 / 0.00
050 / 2893 / 0.90 / 4832 / 0.59
100 / 2793 / 2.50 / 4504 / 1.06
150 / 2696 / 2.99 / 4196 / 1.85
200 / 2601 / 2.28 / 3906 / 2.99
250 / 2508 / 0.27 / 3632 / 4.47
300 / 2417 / -3.12 / 3373 / 6.33
350 / 2328 / -8.00 / 3129 / 8.58
400 / 2242 / -14.5 / 2902 / 11.25
450 / 2157 / -22.72 / 2686 / 14.35
500 / 2074 / -32.82 / 2483 / 17.91
I likely will shoot both the NPs and ABs, and decide after I see which one shoots better in my rifle.
And Skyline and Monish: It's settled. I won't put a bipod on the barrel. I mainly was thinking of using one for my brown/black bear, wolf, wolverine Alaskan hunt. I might have a stud put on the forend, for that purpose, but I am not sure. I have one on my 340 Wby, and, if the 375 Wby doesn not recoil much more than that one, it shouldn't be a problem. But I would not take it to Africa based on what you guys are saying. My bear guide says that his clients regularly shoot at bears out to 250yds or even a little more. And I can shoot like an Olympian with a bipod at distance compared to how I shoot without one sometimes.
If you are going to be sniping brown bear at 200-250 yards then you probably will be OK with the Accubond. I have had to pound a couple at 10-15 yards and from what I have seen using the Accubonds on other game I would much rather have that partition for hammering through bone at close range........but that is just me. Don't get me wrong, the Accubond is a good bullet and it shoots really well in the rifles I have used it in, but I have seen them peel way too far back for my liking if I was trying to break a 800-1200 pound bear down at close range.
I am use to shooting the big bears at close range, not at several hundred yards. I don't think I have ever let anyone shoot a grizzly at those kind of distances and usually we have gotten to within a hundred yards or less. On the coast we regularly got within 50 yards and sometimes even closer.
Each to their own but shooting a brown bear at 250 yards would just take all of the fun out of it for me.
Skyline, thanks for the comments. The only reason I might depart a little from you on the relative thrill factor, is that I have not yet hunted, much less shot, a single brown bear. Even the hunt without success will be a thrill for me. I just love the challenge of things like that. And, in a few years, after I may have successfully hunted one or two brown bear, at either long or short range, I might desire the challenge of trying to eat breakfast with and petting one of them before I shoot him. And my guide tries to get as close as possible, but he hunts in open terrain like this:
Originally Posted by Skyline
And, if its 5:00pm nine days into my ten day hunt, and a big T-Rex sized bear is sitting on the horizon at 250yds, I'm glad my guide will let me get into a stable prone position, with him doing the same, and fire. But, I've never done it, so I'm just guessing a little. The goal is to get closer than 150yds.
Well I have guided a great deal in the open spaces of the Arctic and even in the barrens/tundra you can usually get fairly close if some effort is put into it. I find that too many hunters and guides opt to take shots these days that people would have passed on and worked harder to get closer to the animal in days gone by. The cartridges and optics most use now seems to encourage longer shots because it can be done and it seems to have become more of the norm.
Having said that, yes with a pile of coin on the line and a last day opportunity one is going to want to maximize their chances.
There has been a definite change in the mindset of hunters and how they view things and that is also reflected in guides and how they view things as well. In the 'olden' days the idea was to get close to dangerous game so that you can be more precise with your shot placement. In recent years I have had guides tell me they like the long shots because they can get the client (assuming he can shoot in the first place) to take his time and place his shot without getting too rattled by being close to a big nasty, hairy thing with teeth. And if the first shot does not anchor it, the two of them have time to pound away at the bear until it is down.
Hope you have a good hunt.
Congratulations MarineHawk! Your 375 Weatherby is a fine choice and with proper shot placement will be effective on any big game animal. Good hunting.
Skyline, it's good to get the perspective and info from you since you've been doiing this for a while. It's interesting to hear how things have changed since you've started. Do you think there is any merit to what the other guides have been telling you about shot placement? I don't have an opinion, but I would venture to say, as a technical matter, that I likely can place a shot better from the prone with a bipod at 250yds at a bear not moving much than I can off-hand at 100 yds at one moving around a lot. Though I'm decent at shooting off hand, in the prone, I can lay there with my rifle braced between my bipod and shoulder, and the gun just doesn't move. I plan on continuing to practice both methods a lot this summer with my new rifle. I appreciate your perspective, as it's a lot more informed then mine. I jmust want to shoot a bear!
Originally Posted by Skyline
Originally Posted by Big5
Marinehawk............ in general terms I would have to say that for every hunter I guide who is capable of consistently putting a bullet where it counts at 250 yards, I will see 20 who can't. Most guys are a lot better at shooting on the internet than they are in real life.
On closer shots, lets say inside 100 yards, there is not doubt that the adrenaline is probably pumping out a little faster with a big bear than when it is a distant animal on a slope. The closer you are the better your perspective as to how big it actually is, and of course it is that much more exciting because you know that if you screw up it may want to take a couple of rounds out of you. Sure I have had guys fall apart at close range on a bear hunt, but I have had guys fall apart at close range shooting a moose or a mule deer.............and when shooting sheep or goats at 200 yards and beyond.
Any hunter should be able to place a bullet fairly accurately freehand at 50 yards and if he/she can't then they should get their butt off the bench and practice more. In most situations, even at 50 or a 100 yards the bear will not necessarily be aware of you after the stalk if things go like they should. You can usually use a tussock of swamp grass or a rock or your day pack for a rest and lots of hunters are starting to carry collapsible shooting sticks to use in the field. Hunters need to practice quickly assessing a shooting situation for an improvised rest and I see few that do it these days.
There are times and places where long shots have to be taken or the opportunity will be lost. That does happen. But, I see many long shots being taken simply because no one wants to bother taking the time to get closer. In truth, the art of stalking is becoming a lost one......the ability to read the land, the wind and mentally form a picture of where and how to get closer and then execute it. Most hunters will just take the shot if they think they can make it and not even try to get closer.
Dangerous game hunting has always been something special. It very much is a 'specialty' hunt because if things go wrong there is a danger that you can get beat up or be knocking on the gates sooner than anticipated. The adrenaline rush and the excitement of getting close and personal with something that may want to stomp, gore or eviscerate you is heady stuff. It can also be addictive for some and for others it can be a one time experience that they would rather not repeat. :)
I fully understand your desire to get a big coastal bear, and for most of us it would be a one time deal at the prices they are going for. If you poke one at 250 yards though, you will be missing out on much of what it is all about. It would be no different than me shooting a cape buffalo at 250 yards (if a PH would let you) in an area of grassland, as opposed to hunting them in the thick jess and pulling the trigger at 40 yards when your nose is filled with 'au de bovine' and with the noise of other big black bodies and platter sized cloven hooves moving through the bush only yards away.
There is a big difference.
Regardless, I hope the hunt goes well and you get a big boar.:)
Kelly, very well said. Your post is a sensible one which expresses a great amount of knowledge obviously gained from much hard earned experience.
Thanks for the comments Skyline. It sounds like you enjoy and are very good at what you do. I can assure you that I will practice a lot with my rifle and seek to get close to any bear we see. Other than that, I will let my guide make the judgments. He seems like a very responsible guy, and I hope it works out for a relatively close kill. Mercifully, he flies us out about 100 miles away from te closest small town, and there usually are plenty of bears there. So, hopefully, we will get to see one close up.
Two very wise decisions MarineHawk. Practicing with your rifle will not only improve your accuracy it will also greatly increase your confidence. And accepting the decisions of your guide and following his direction will generally increase your chances for a successful hunt. Happy hunting!
Originally Posted by MarineHawk
Skyline very well stated ,lot sn lots to learn as this sport is subject you can never master , the books, the ballistics , and the fine rifles cannot make one perfect to procure best of trophys, its the practical field experince ,well placed shots and hard toil that would produce a fine trophy adorning the trophy hall.
Highland , you decided squarely well , use a rifle that is use to you and so is your shoulder use to both , as they say "never be undergunned and never exchange weapons"