Rifle for Plains game

Major Khan

AH legend
Joined
Dec 3, 2019
Messages
2,189
Reaction score
5,640
Media
159
Articles
46
My daughter used her 257R for warthog(about 10,) Impala(3), Red Hartebeest(1), Kudu(1), Zebra(1) and all were one shot no tracking kills. The impalas were fun shooting culls and the warthogs were for food for the trackers and the PH liked her so no charge. View attachment 346899 View attachment 346900 View attachment 346901 View attachment 346902 View attachment 346903 This was spot and stalk at ranges from 135 to 410 yards. She used 120gr Swift A-Frames and put the bullet were she should. I used a 257W and 338win mag and did no better. You do not need a 30-06, 7mag or whatever for Africa if you can shoot correctly. A 100-120gr bullet in the right place is much better than 300grs that is not. The 6.5X55 or even the 6.5Crudmore or even a 7-08 using Swift bullets or Barnes TTSX will also do well as long as you can shoot properly.
Your daughter is extremely talented . To be able to accomplish all of these feats with a small bore ... is no simple matter . You are 1 lucky father !
 

KMG Hunting Safaris

Sponsor
Since 2013
AH ambassador
Reviews
18
Joined
Jul 9, 2010
Messages
5,583
Reaction score
7,046
Location
Eastern Cape, South Africa
Website
www.huntsafaris.co.za
Media
1,145
Articles
1
Hunting reports
Africa
5
Australia/NZ
1
Member of
DSC Life Member ; Eastern Cape Game Management Association ; PE Pistol and Rifle Club
Hunted
South Africa, Namibia, New Zealand, USA, Canada
Need opinions for a rifle caliber for my wife with plains game. We booked a trip for plains game next year. This will be my second trip but my wife’s first. She’s never hunted before and I’d like to get her a rifle to use. I bought her a savage 243 which she’ll use for deer here in Oregon this year. I know that’s not enough gun for Africa. I have a 6.5cm longer range gun but we’ve got a few larger game on our list. Sable, zebra and waterbuck among a few others. We shoot competitive shotgun sports so I don’t she super recoil sensitive, but I want a rifle she can shoot comfortably. I’ve been thinking about 7mm-08. Heard good things but never shot one. Others include 6.5 per, or 26 Nosler or 28 Nosler. Give me some feedbacks guys.

Really all depends on the area or province, Mark. We deal with quite big country here in the Eastern Cape, so, something like the 28 Nosler really performs nicely here. Sable and Waterbuck are very tough, and can soak up quite a bit of punishment. Don't stop shooting.
 

BeeMaa

AH legend
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,811
Reaction score
4,633
Location
Eastern US
Media
99
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI
Hunted
Eastern US & RSA
Sable and Waterbuck are very tough, and can soak up quite a bit of punishment. Don't stop shooting.
My PH told me "If it's still moving, you are still shooting".
Good philosophy, even if you are not hunting in Africa.
Shut up, reload and be ready for the next shot.
Drinks at the bar when it's in the salt.
 

Tra3

AH fanatic
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
Messages
845
Reaction score
1,355
Location
Minneapolis, MN
Media
18
Member of
SCI
Hunted
Namibia
+1 on ammo availability being a primary consideration.
So: .270 win, 7mm-08 or 6.5 CM.
The funny part is when you end up shooting her rifle more than yours because the recoil is mild so the rifle miraculously shoots like a laser...
I heard my good buddy just say “my son has already become the hunter that I will never be!” He was referencing the calm, accurate shooter that his 14 year old is. We have our boys shooting .243 or 6.5 CM.
I bought my sister a 7mm-08.
 

Hearties

AH veteran
Joined
Jan 6, 2015
Messages
192
Reaction score
234
Location
South Africa
Member of
SAHGCA, SA WIngshooters, CPS, FBSSC
Hunted
RSA, Botswana
I really like the 7mm-08 but it is pretty rare here in SA. So, if ammo availability is a concern, .270 Win would be a better call (or even the 7x57 / 7x64). Plenty of Creedmoor ammo too.
 
Joined
Oct 28, 2018
Messages
3,343
Reaction score
5,127
Location
Wyong new south Wales Australia
Media
8
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
SSAA
Hunted
Australia
My PH told me "If it's still moving, you are still shooting".
Good philosophy, even if you are not hunting in Africa.
Shut up, reload and be ready for the next shot.
Drinks at the bar when it's in the salt.
BeeMaa
My PHtold us the same thing. Bullets are cheap the trip isn't
Bob
 

Ryan

AH elite
Joined
Apr 16, 2011
Messages
1,075
Reaction score
1,399
Location
Anchorage, Alaska
Media
120
Articles
2
Hunting reports
Africa
3
Member of
Black Sheep Bowmen Archery Club.
Hunted
Namibia and South Africa
If ammo availability is a concern the 308 wins hands down over the 7mm-08. That said, anyone bringing their own rifle is also bringing ammo. And for all the concern over lost ammo, it's a pretty rare occurance.
 

BeeMaa

AH legend
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,811
Reaction score
4,633
Location
Eastern US
Media
99
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI
Hunted
Eastern US & RSA
If ammo availability is a concern the 308 wins hands down over the 7mm-08. That said, anyone bringing their own rifle is also bringing ammo. And for all the concern over lost ammo, it's a pretty rare occurance.
I agree that lost (or late arriving) ammo is not common.
However, that is no reason to be ill-prepared for it happening.
It's pretty easy to have a discussion with your PH/Safari company about a backup plan.
There are much worse things than having to using a camp rifle or buy ammo.
 

BeeMaa

AH legend
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,811
Reaction score
4,633
Location
Eastern US
Media
99
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI
Hunted
Eastern US & RSA
BeeMaa
My PHtold us the same thing. Bullets are cheap the trip isn't
Bob
Paying for an unrecovered animal when you had an opportunity for a follow up shot...
Even if it's not the best angle or the perfect placement, if you hit the animal it will help.

I know this thread is about PG, but allow me to divert to DG for just a moment.
As we were driving around in Africa, looking at the Cape Buffalo, I dreamed...
I must have been dreaming out loud, because is wasn't long before I was discussing Buff with our PH.
He mentioned that his experience has been 100% recovery with 2 or more hits on the Buff.
Meaning a well placed first shot and then a second one as soon as you can get a good sight picture.
We didn't discuss the recovery rate from just one shot, but I have to assume it's less than 100%.
Why else would he bring it up?
 

Hogpatrol

Silver supporter
AH ambassador
Joined
Apr 13, 2013
Messages
6,105
Reaction score
13,591
Location
Delaware, USA
Media
76
Articles
4
Member of
Atglen Sportsmen's Club, NRA ,SCCFSA,
Hunted
RSA, DE, NJ, PA, KS, TX, ME
Paying for an unrecovered animal when you had an opportunity for a follow up shot...
Even if it's not the best angle or the perfect placement, if you hit the animal it will help.

I know this thread is about PG, but allow me to divert to DG for just a moment.
As we were driving around in Africa, looking at the Cape Buffalo, I dreamed...
I must have been dreaming out loud, because is wasn't long before I was discussing Buff with our PH.
He mentioned that his experience has been 100% recovery with 2 or more hits on the Buff.
Meaning a well placed first shot and then a second one as soon as you can get a good sight picture.
We didn't discuss the recovery rate from just one shot, but I have to assume it's less than 100%.
Why else would he bring it up?

Because resurrections don't only occur in the bible. :D
 

Shootist43

Gold supporter
AH ambassador
Joined
Apr 25, 2015
Messages
5,933
Reaction score
5,973
Location
Grosse Ile, Michigan
Media
25
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA
Hunted
Michigan, Texas, Missouri, Limpopo Province South Africa
What Ga. Shotgun does your wife shoot? How much does it weigh? I only saw one post that began to address what I'm thinking about. There is no doubt that more powerful rifles are preferred, especially if you start talking some of the larger PG. Work out the recoil of what your wife is used to handling and then look at calibers and bullet weight that generate something similar. Beg or borrow something suitable and take it to the range. Not all suitable calibers have the word "Magnum" in their name. Several years ago a young lady joined AH her moniker is "Just Gina" I'd suggest sending her a PM to get things started and let the "girls" take it from there.
 

shark_za

AH veteran
Joined
Feb 6, 2020
Messages
175
Reaction score
284
Location
South Africa
Media
2
Hunted
Limpopo, KZN, Free State, N-Cape, E-Cape
I take it the 6.5CM is setup in a chassis system or something like that for dedicated long range shooting? Else I would just take that.
If she is buying a rifle then any of the 6.5's are no different from the 7mm-08. A 308 would be nice is she can handle it.
6.5 Swede, 7x57, .308 will all take whats on the menu.
 

Alexandro Faria

AH enthusiast
Joined
Feb 15, 2015
Messages
323
Reaction score
317
Location
Pretoria
Media
20
Articles
8
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
SA wingshooters, GOSA,
Hunted
RSA, Namibia, Botswana
I'm late to the party- apologies. At heart, I'm an old fart-I believe a "do it all" kinda rifle is usually better- no substitute for trigger time! My girlfriend is around about the height of your wife and she can shoot my 30-06 no1 (220gr loads) no issue. She also shoots my mate's 7mm rem mag like a champ, so there you go.

Personal opinion: If she's comfortable with it and she would use it on elk in the US, it should be fine here. Keep it above a 270 and you really shouldn't have any issues if you pair it up with decent projectiles.
 

MarkD

AH senior member
Joined
Nov 24, 2016
Messages
93
Reaction score
124
Location
Springfield Oregon
Media
15
Hunted
South Africa,Alaska,Oregon,Washington and Florida
What Ga. Shotgun does your wife shoot? How much does it weigh? I only saw one post that began to address what I'm thinking about. There is no doubt that more powerful rifles are preferred, especially if you start talking some of the larger PG. Work out the recoil of what your wife is used to handling and then look at calibers and bullet weight that generate something similar. Beg or borrow something suitable and take it to the range. Not all suitable calibers have the word "Magnum" in their name. Several years ago a young lady joined AH her moniker is "Just Gina" I'd suggest sending her a PM to get things started and let the "girls" take it from there.

She shoots a Blaser 12g o/u. It weighs just shy of 8lbs. At a tournament we can shoot 150-200rds and she has no problem with that.
IMG_3255.JPG
 

BeeMaa

AH legend
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,811
Reaction score
4,633
Location
Eastern US
Media
99
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI
Hunted
Eastern US & RSA
If she can handle 150-200 rounds of 12 bore target loads in a weekend...
...5-10 rounds in a range session with a 8# rifle in 308WIN should be a slam dunk.

With all due respect...looking good with those guns.
 

Shootist43

Gold supporter
AH ambassador
Joined
Apr 25, 2015
Messages
5,933
Reaction score
5,973
Location
Grosse Ile, Michigan
Media
25
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA
Hunted
Michigan, Texas, Missouri, Limpopo Province South Africa
Mark D, given your wife's experience with a shotgun, I'm betting she can handle a 30-06 or even a 35 Whelen just fine. I'd opt for the Whelen. Have you contacted AH member @Just Gina like I suggested? She was asking these same questions several years ago, I have a feeling her answers will surprise you.
 

shootist~

Bronze supporter
AH enthusiast
Joined
Jan 9, 2019
Messages
445
Reaction score
489
Location
Albuquerque, NM
Media
11
Member of
NRA Life Member, USPSA Certified Range Officer (inactive), NRA Certified Instructor (inactive)
Hunted
USA, Mexico
And since you already have experience with Blaser shotguns, the Blaser R8 switch barrel rifle line might a consideration . A 7mm08 could become a bigger bore later with a second barrel.

Several AH veterans are R8 fans.
 

Zambezi

AH veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
205
Reaction score
458
Location
Johannesburg
Hunted
South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia
Someone mentioned checking with your PH what the terrain is like and shot distances. Probably the most important bits of info you'll need in making a rifle choice. Your "lighter" calibers (under .300) will probably be more than adequate (.270) but when you need that 300m+ shot on your bigger and tougher species listed you're going to want to have brought something in the .300 range... The .308 with decent bullet weight will be welcomed. And if the shot is that far out and you want a heavier bullet for a better THWACK then 30.06 works well. Recoil should be manageable even for your SWAMBO.

All due to respect to those who have suggested marginal calibers, rather use enough gun! Recoil can be managed by downloading or using lighter lead. You're paying a lot for pulling the trigger so don't waste the opportunity... and wounding game always sucks.
 

Art Lambart II

AH elite
Joined
Apr 24, 2015
Messages
1,011
Reaction score
1,547
Location
Kansas City
Media
27
Hunting reports
Africa
1
USA/Canada
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI, QDMA
Hunted
MI, TX, MO, South Africa Limpopo & Northwest Provinces
I have seen a lot of people suggest or recommend the 6.5CM for use on PG, unless SA has changed its laws the minimum caliber required to hunt Red Heartebeest or larger PG is .270 or greater. My 9 year old, 75 pound son uses a custom 6.5x55 without any issues or problems but when we talk about him using it in Africa the largest thing we talk about hunting is Impala and Blesbok. Will a 6.5x55 or a 6.5CM take a Zebra, with out question they will but in SA it is illegal to do so. We as hunters and shooter should always follow the law as it applies hunting and shooting, to do anything less is giving the anti's more ammunition to attack and stereotype us in an effort to restrict and or eliminate those rights and privileges. I'm not trying to say the 6.5 has no place in Africa it most certainly does but its place is not a general PG cartridge.
 

BeeMaa

AH legend
Joined
Jun 11, 2017
Messages
2,811
Reaction score
4,633
Location
Eastern US
Media
99
Hunting reports
Africa
1
Member of
NRA Life Member, SCI
Hunted
Eastern US & RSA

Forum statistics

Threads
36,638
Messages
694,122
Members
64,160
Latest member
JamilaJ309
 

 

 

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

Rifle57 wrote on Rimshot's profile.
I bought some bullets from Rimshot and he is good to trade with!
Greetings all! I've been a hunter for 50 years, but only now planning a trip to Africa. I was fortunate and successfully bid on a couple hunts for plains game in SA later this year and next. Also a rare Native Texas (5th generation) and USMC Vet. Hunt safe y'all!
uujm wrote on trg's profile.
I am looking for a Safari Express. Was yours made in New Haven or South Carolina? Any other details you can give me? I am very motivated to buy.
pimes wrote on flatwater bill's profile.
Hello Bill - can you tell me that landowner/ranch/outfitter - Thank you!
Pete0905 wrote on damundsen87's profile.
Hello
Is the Khales 1-6 still for sale?
Thanks
Josh
 
Top