300 Win Mag or 325 WSM

Skinnersblade

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Have you ever hunted the wide open areas of the central and western U.S.? That's where the 300 win mag and calibers like the 257 Weatherby magnum excel, IMO, i.e. long shots where you want as flat a trajectory as you can get. Which of the rifles from the 257 wby to 300 win magnum you choose really depends on how much bullet you want when it hits its target. The 375 H&H is a fine caliber with a lot of punch at respectable distance, but it wasn't designed for the longer range shooting the aforementioned calibers were and therefore isn't a good substitute for them. To me it boils down to using the right tool for the job. I like the Weatherby for white tail type game and the 300 for elk size game, and both are pretty easy on the shoulder and light to haul around the field.

ive got friends on the prairies in Alberta and Saskatchewan with similar views as yours, I think it’s more of regional interpretation. Where you western gentleman use them to extend your range locally people try to use magnum calibers here to hit hard which is where I’d prefer a larger caliber/heavier bullet then a faster moving .30 cal. To each there own I’m not saying my opinion is right just what has worked in my limited observation.
 

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Maybe It’s just me but I really can’t see the need for a magnum .30 caliber at all, if a .303 isn’t rifle enough I don’t want more powder behind the bullet I want bigger ammunition. Likewise I really see no need for .338 caliber rifles. I had a .340 and sold it because having .375 makes it obsolete.

If owning a .30 cal magnum or a .32 or .33 cal magnum makes you happy then go for it. The first thing I learned On AH is you don’t need a reason to buy guns.
Hi Skinnersblade,

Generally speaking I agree with your philosophy.
To show that I put my money where my mouth is, I do not presently own a .300 Magnum.
However when I formerly owned one, (actually 3 of them, off and on over my lifetime), it was always the original H&H version.

The .300 Magnum is IMO a highly specialized cartridge for longer shots at thin skinned game.
And again IMO, it is excellent for this with 180 and / or 200 grain spitzers.
So, I also agree with Fastrig on the topic of a .300 magnum for hunting things like North American elk, in the wide open spaces and steep canyon habitat of our western states, plus parts of Canada, where they are often hunted.

Many of my fellow USA resident hunters feel that the .300 magnums are multi-purpose cartridges.
I do not agree with that because in my experiences, the velocity is too high for “normal” hunting ranges and especially for close range shots, thereby ruining a lot of wonderful eating meat, unnecessarily.

To clarify a bit more, I am usually not one to shoot game animals beyond about 250 to 300 yards / meters.
The vast majority of the game I have shot has been even much closer than that.
However, once in a blue moon I have been guilty of shooting a critter out around 400, due to lack of cover between myself and said critter.
At that distance, I have enjoyed the flat trajectory and adequate hard punch of the 180 grain .30 bullet at somewhat higher velocity.

Kind Regards,
Velo Dog.
 
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Fastrig

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Hi Skinnersblade,

Generally speaking I agree with your philosophy.
To show that I put my money where my mouth is, I do not presently own a .300 Magnum.
However when I formerly owned one, (actually 3 of them, off and on over my lifetime), it was always the original H&H version.

The .300 Magnum is IMO a highly specialized cartridge for longer shots at thin skinned game.
And again IMO, it is excellent for this with 180 and / or 200 grain spitzers.
So, I also agree with Fastrig on the topic of a .300 magnum for hunting things like North American elk, in the wide open spaces and steep canyon habitat of our western states, plus parts of Canada, where they are often hunted.

Many of my fellow USA resident hunters feel that the .300 magnums are multi-purpose cartridges.
I do not agree with that because in my experiences, the velocity is too high for “normal” hunting ranges and especially for close range shots, thereby ruining a lot of wonderful eating meat, unnecessarily.

To clarify a bit more, I am usually not one to shoot game animals beyond about 250 to 300 yards / meters.
The vast majority of the game I have shot has been even much closer than that.
However, once in a blue moon I have been guilty of shooting a critter out around 400, due to lack of cover between myself and said critter.
At that distance, I have enjoyed the flat trajectory and adequate hard punch of the 180 grain .30 bullet at somewhat higher velocity.

Kind Regards,
Velo Dog.

I’ve switched to using a 9.3 caliber rifle for a good deal of my hunting now that I’m in the Texas Hill County. Long shots here are few and far between so you don’t really need a magnum. Using 230 grain rounds instead of the more traditional 285/286 and been pleased with the results so far. I bought the 9.3 originally for Africa but have quickly found that this caliber may be the best all around rifle there is. Always thought the 308 was the best GP caliber, but now feel the 9.3 is the better of the two for hunting. Back to the subject of magnums, the Weatherby 257 mag is a fantastic white tail caliber, short or long range. Bullets of 90-100 grains don’t damage much, it shoots fast and flat as a board short or long distance, recoil is light as is the rifle. You can also load up to 120 grain for larger game and it packs a good punch when you do. Only down side to the caliber is you need a 26” + barrel to reach it’s full potential where I prefer a bit shorter rifle, but guess you can’t have everything :) The 300 win mag is still considered by many to be a great GP rifle. I tend to agree as it is can tackle a wide range of hunting scenarios and do so well on both smaller to larger critters. 165-200 grain bullets excel in the caliber. If you could only have two rifles in your cabinet, for me one would be the 300 win mag and the other would be either a 9.3 or 375 H&H.

P.S. The 338 Federal is a fantastic round. Wish it had gained more popularity when it was released. Personally, I consider it to be the modern day diamond in the rough of hunting cartridges.
 

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Have you ever hunted the wide open areas of the central and western U.S.? That's where the 300 win mag and calibers like the 257 Weatherby magnum excel, IMO, i.e. long shots where you want as flat a trajectory as you can get. Which of the rifles from the 257 wby to 300 win magnum you choose really depends on how much bullet you want when it hits its target. The 375 H&H is a fine caliber with a lot of punch at respectable distance, but it wasn't designed for the longer range shooting the aforementioned calibers were and therefore isn't a good substitute for them. To me it boils down to using the right tool for the job. I like the Weatherby for white tail type game and the 300 for elk size game, and both are pretty easy on the shoulder and light to haul around the field.

@Fastrig is right on. For the Western hunting I do when most shots are 250+ yards, it is a good idea to have the extra power and flat trajectory. For deer hunting in Minnesota where 90% of my shots are less than 50 yards, a .300wm is way to much power.
For African PG, I previously used a 7mmRM but now have a .300WM and .375h&h combo. Enough power and easy to get ammo. I’ve only ever seen one hunter with a .325WM.
 

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Hi everyone,

I am booked in to do a plains game hunt next year just wondering what callibers people are using. My main animals will be kudu zebra eland springbuck gemsbok and so on. I want to get a 300 win mag but the gun i am after i am having trouble getting it. There is a 325 wsm in the same make of rifle that i like but would like to know what people think of the 325 over the 300. And is the ammo for the 325 easy to get over in Africa (Namibia) just incase things go missing in transit.
Cheers in advance
Clint

Clint21

Being a local who loves to peruse the local gun shops i think you will possibly have issues getting ammunition for the 325wsm.

The 300wm is a local favorite and just about any shop stock good ammunition for it. Also the 300wm packs enough wallop to take any of the local planes game.

Good lick, enjoy the hunt and shoot straight
 

Fastrig

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@Fastrig is right on. For the Western hunting I do when most shots are 250+ yards, it is a good idea to have the extra power and flat trajectory. For deer hunting in Minnesota where 90% of my shots are less than 50 yards, a .300wm is way to much power.
For African PG, I previously used a 7mmRM but now have a .300WM and .375h&h combo. Enough power and easy to get ammo. I’ve only ever seen one hunter with a .325WM.

What are you using for the shorter range hunts you do?
 

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@Fastrig in the last few years I’ve put away the 7mmMag and used a 6.5 CM or .243 for short range woods hunting. I also use a muzzleloader or my bow. This year I’ll likely use the 6.5CM again or a .270 win.

I’m sure a .300 WM will work wonders, but I think it will ruin more meat. (I’m contemplating using the .375H&H for deer season, but maybe the same problem). What do you use for deer at close range?
 

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@Fastrig in the last few years I’ve put away the 7mmMag and used a 6.5 CM or .243 for short range woods hunting. I also use a muzzleloader or my bow. This year I’ll likely use the 6.5CM again or a .270 win.

I’m sure a .300 WM will work wonders, but I think it will ruin more meat. (I’m contemplating using the .375H&H for deer season, but maybe the same problem). What do you use for deer at close range?
I have a friend who uses a 375H&H with solids on Whitetail Deer.
Says he's too old to be tracking them like he used to.
 

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The trick to not ruining meat on a deer is to miss the bigger bones. Punch it through the ribs and take out the lungs and very little meat is lost. But go for a heart shot and take out the front shoulder and you will loose most of it, that is unless you like to deal with bloodshot meat. My mom was a expert at that, she would spend quite a while cleaning it up for the BBQ pot.

As for a .325 Win, why not? I shoot a rifle the .340 Weatherby that ammo is not something that you will find on the shelf of too many places and if you do you will spend north of $100 for a box of 20. But that is what reloading is for. If you know that you won't or can't just buy off of the shelf then reload them and make sure that you have enough for your hunts.

When I went to Africa my thoughts were that if my ammo got lost in the plane transfers that I would just use one of the outfitters rifles and ammo.
 

Rule 303

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Have you ever hunted the wide open areas of the central and western U.S.? That's where the 300 win mag and calibers like the 257 Weatherby magnum excel, IMO, i.e. long shots where you want as flat a trajectory as you can get. Which of the rifles from the 257 wby to 300 win magnum you choose really depends on how much bullet you want when it hits its target. The 375 H&H is a fine caliber with a lot of punch at respectable distance, but it wasn't designed for the longer range shooting the aforementioned calibers were and therefore isn't a good substitute for them. To me it boils down to using the right tool for the job. I like the Weatherby for white tail type game and the 300 for elk size game, and both are pretty easy on the shoulder and light to haul around the field.

What you say is true to an extent, hence a 300RUM make way more sense than a 300Win. Long before the speedy magnums people developed open sight shooting skills and were droping animals with the 7 & 8x57, 303, 30-06 at 400+meters. Just saying you don't need the magnums but they sure are nice to have.
 
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The trick to not ruining meat on a deer is to miss the bigger bones. Punch it through the ribs and take out the lungs and very little meat is lost. But go for a heart shot and take out the front shoulder and you will loose most of it, that is unless you like to deal with bloodshot meat. My mom was a expert at that, she would spend quite a while cleaning it up for the BBQ pot.

As for a .325 Win, why not? I shoot a rifle the .340 Weatherby that ammo is not something that you will find on the shelf of too many places and if you do you will spend north of $100 for a box of 20. But that is what reloading is for. If you know that you won't or can't just buy off of the shelf then reload them and make sure that you have enough for your hunts.

When I went to Africa my thoughts were that if my ammo got lost in the plane transfers that I would just use one of the outfitters rifles and ammo.
 

Skinnersblade

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@Fastrig in the last few years I’ve put away the 7mmMag and used a 6.5 CM or .243 for short range woods hunting. I also use a muzzleloader or my bow. This year I’ll likely use the 6.5CM again or a .270 win.

I’m sure a .300 WM will work wonders, but I think it will ruin more meat. (I’m contemplating using the .375H&H for deer season, but maybe the same problem). What do you use for deer at close range?
I use a single shot Henry 45/70 with a Nikon monarch African scope for deer at close range. 325 grain Hornadys as for ruining meat I prefer neck shots or head shots so meat loss isn’t a problem.
 

Fastrig

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@Fastrig in the last few years I’ve put away the 7mmMag and used a 6.5 CM or .243 for short range woods hunting. I also use a muzzleloader or my bow. This year I’ll likely use the 6.5CM again or a .270 win.

I’m sure a .300 WM will work wonders, but I think it will ruin more meat. (I’m contemplating using the .375H&H for deer season, but maybe the same problem). What do you use for deer at close range?

Used to use my old 308 win but now that it’s been retired i will probably be using the 257 Weatherby for white tails. Picked up some 90 grain copper rounds for it and can’t see it doing much meat damage, even with it being a smoking hot round. My other choice is the 9.3x74R with the 230 grain Norma Ecostrike coppers. Pretty much overkill on bullet size for the game around here, but love that rifle so it will probably share time with the 257 simply because I dig carrying and shooting it :) The 300 win mag would work fine too, it really is a good all around rifle, but will use that mostly for hunts out west where longer shots are common and on elk and Africa hunts. Since we are talking about the 300 win mag‘s viability, they used to make “light” ammo for it which I’m guessing had a different or reduced powder load to slow it down a bit, i.e. 2500-2600 fps with a 165 to 180 grain bullet. Not sure if they still make that kind of ammo but if they do that should work very well for closer shots.
 

Fastrig

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What you say is true to an extent, hence a 300RUM make way more sense than a 300Win. Long before the speedy magnums people developed open sight shooting skills and were droping animals with the 7 & 8x57, 303, 30-06 at 400+meters. Just saying you don't need the magnums but they sure are nice to have.

Oh, agree 100%. Used my old 308 win and a 30-06 for years, didn’t own a magnum. Not saying a magnum is required but it certainly makes life easier past 250-300 yards. Don’t shoot that far most of the time but when it’s required I’d prefer to have the magnum in my hands. My first magnum was a 338 win mag. Hated that rifle, kicked the crap out of me, and it got sold pretty quick and replaced with a 300 win mag which I enjoy shooting.
 

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My proposition is to always go for the .300 Winchester Magnum . Factory loaded ammunition and reloading components are so much more convenient to find , especially in those out of the way places .

You boring old bloke, where's your sense of adventure :) :)

What you say has merit.
Where did the emoticons go?
 

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