.458 Winchester Magnum too much gun?

Quaticman

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Craig Boddington in his recently released book entitled Buffalo II stated that the .45 caliber big bore rifles are not required for hunting buffalo.
In his opinion, the .375 H & H Magnum is a more suitable choice while the .416's (Remington, Ruger, Rigby) are even better yet. Would you hunt a cape buffalo with a .458 Winchester Magnum bolt action rifle or is it really too much gun for the task?
 

crs

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More Boddington BS.
Of course a .458 Win Mag is not required. Some folks use handguns and others use bow and arrow. Some use 500NE or 600 NE.
Man is not even required to hunt buffalo.
But if we do it, we have our say on the tools we use Except in some backward countries that are behind the times on modern firearm and ammunition.

Rant over.
 

PHOENIX PHIL

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Too much gun for the task? I think not, more like too much gun for the hunter. I'm guessing CB was writing from the perspective of he'd rather see someone shoot a buff with the less hard kicking .375 and place the bullet accurately, than a poorly placed .458.
 

Kawshik Rahman

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Absolutely not . While a .375 Holland and Holland magnum calibre rifle loaded with modern soft nose bullets with a controlled rate of expansion , is perfectly adequate for the task , there is nothing wrong with using a .458 Winchester magnum calibre rifle to shoot them either . Many of my clients successfully took Gaur ( Indian Bison ) with .458 Winchester magnum calibre rifles .
Screenshot_20191013-052701_01.png

This Indian water buffalo was shot by a client using a .458 Winchester magnum calibre bolt operation rifle made by Birmingham Small Arms.
Screenshot_20191006-203431_01_01.png

This Gaur was shot by my client using a double barrel .458 Winchester magnum calibre rifle built by the firm , Holland and Holland.

He would go on to secure a Royal Bengal tiger with the same rifle , the following night .
While l personally favor the .375 Holland and Holland magnum cartridge myself over the .458 Winchester magnum cartridge , l see no problem with a Shikari using the latter calibre to hunt a buffalo , provided of course that you can shoot properly with it.
 
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WAB

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I have a .375 H&H and .458 Lott. I have killed buffalo with both, but IMO, the Lott is far superior on buffalo, assuming you put the bullet where it needs to go.
 

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"assuming you put the bullet where it needs to go."

Always best - shot placement rules!

And badly placed shots can and have led to less than desired performance.
 

johnnyblues

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Agree will everything said above. The golden rule is and has always been the right bullet and shot placement. I don’t have to tell anyone here you could be using a 460 Weatherby and place it poorly with disastrous results.
 

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My Grandfather would say of shooting at game...
"Shoot as if it is your only shot, because it could be"

Granted he grew up in the Depression so ammo was scarce and he also hunted to put food on the table.
Still good words to think of when I look through a scope.
 

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I doubt you will "overly impress" a buffalo with a 458 Win Mag or Lott, but with my limited experience with buffalo (4 Water Buffalo and 2 Cape Buffalo), I would say that anything above a 416 isn't necessary. And a 375 has left me with little to be desired.
 

WAB

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With similar bullet placement the impact of a Lott on buffalo is significantly greater than that of a .375. The Lott also opens up shots that would not be well advised with a .375. This is all based on the assumption that you can put the bullet where it needs to go.
 

kurpfalzjäger

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I doubt you will "overly impress" a buffalo with a 458 Win Mag or Lott, but with my limited experience with buffalo (4 Water Buffalo and 2 Cape Buffalo), I would say that anything above a 416 isn't necessary. And a 375 has left me with little to be desired.
Not necessary , but not absurd. Who controls big bore rifles well should use them. The bigger the wound channel , the better the effect.
 

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Gosh, the rodeos I’ve had with .500J and .500NE when I botched the first shot! And the biggest bulls sink in seconds shot by .275 Rigby or .30-30 or .300H&H or even .22-250 if I make it good and true the first time!

.375H&H is about perfect especially when scoped. But a nice, close shot with fine open sights is a wonder, too, with the bigger cartridges.
 

PeteG

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Which caliber is best suited will be discussion that will never end.

The question is "Would you hunt a cape buffalo with a .458 Winchester Magnum bolt action rifle or is it really too much gun for the task?"
Yes i would and no it is not too much gun for the task.
 

Forrest Halley

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I would not. I'd much prefer the .375(Have) or the .450 3¼(Desire) in a Ruger No 1 and I'm going to keep shooting until I am good and certain he no longer has flame on the boiler.
 
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With similar bullet placement the impact of a Lott on buffalo is significantly greater than that of a .375. The Lott also opens up shots that would not be well advised with a .375. This is all based on the assumption that you can put the bullet where it needs to go.
I’ll respectfully disagree. I choose to use a .375 and leave the heavier calibers at home. And I shoot them all extremely well thank you very much. The .375 is so versatile, so transportable, and so accurate I honestly feel like I am handicapping myself with my .404 or 500-416. And a 300 gr A Frame, TSX, or Hydro will make any shot on a buffalo anyone should be taking with a Lott.

And no, a .458 is not too large for buffalo. It has been and would be decisive - just wouldn’t be my choice.
 

Frederik

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Having different calibres to use just adds to the fun.
Do the first buffalo with a scoped 375 H&H enjoy and have fun go back do it again with a 458 open sights or red dot like trijicon RMR, SRO, Deltapoint or what ever works for you and make it a challenge to get 50 meters or closer.

I'm awaiting my license/permit for my 458 lott and on its menu is a waterbuck bull as my first targte and then hopefully a buffalo again hunting animals with big bores is fun and challenging at the same time.

So to get back to the post use a 375 H&H on your first buff hunt you are not limited when scoped to use it past 150 yards for proper shot placemeent making and giving you a good chance to go home with a buff. Recoil is very manageablee and 300gr with a proper bullet 2500fps does hurt a buff. You will probarbly have back up is the popo hits the fan with a bigger calibre anyway.

Bigger calibres are an adjusment to shoot especially if you dont shoot them often they limit you on range and on the gals that can be used with beter eye relief and they do push back far more than a 375 but having a bigger gun is fun and make it a challenge on a buff hunt to get closely acquainted.
 

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I’ll respectfully disagree. I choose to use a .375 and leave the heavier calibers at home. And I shoot them all extremely well thank you very much. The .375 is so versatile, so transportable, and so accurate I honestly feel like I am handicapping myself with my .404 or 500-416. And a 300 gr A Frame, TSX, or Hydro will make any shot on a buffalo anyone should be taking with a Lott.

And no, a .458 is not too large for buffalo. It has been and would be decisive - just wouldn’t be my choice.
I’m not saying the .375 won’t get the job done, it will and I’ve done it. However, with the same bullet construction and point of impact, its hard to argue that a 500 gr bullet at 2300 fps will not have more immediate effect on a buffalo than a 300 gr bullet at 2550 fps.

Like you, I have both calibers in the safe, I choose to go with the Lott. However, I’d be perfectly happy to hunt with you while you’re using your .375! I’m sure we’d have a blast. I’ll also bet you can get three shots off with that blaser in the time I can get two off with my M-70!
 
 

 

 

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