The All Around Rifle Caliber....

Ike85123

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For what? I am serious - for what would such a combination be useful?
Backpacking/camping in the mountains for me. I have a couple pistols that would do the job. But there is just something about a powerful weapon making me feel safer in bear country.
Just something short,quick and big !
 

bruce moulds

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Hello Bruce,

I consider this bullet, along the TTSX and GMX to be totally adquate for big feral bulls and cows. They behave like classics 286 grs bullets. And more!
thank you clodo.
when i run out of 286 swifts you might just have convinced me to try the std 250 gn barnesx in the 9.3x64.
where i shoot, flat trajectory is handy, but terminal performance is of more importance.
i did wonder if 250 gns might be a little too light.
the 286 barnes is just too long, using valuable powder space.
bruce.
 

BeeMaa

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Backpacking/camping in the mountains for me. I have a couple pistols that would do the job. But there is just something about a powerful weapon making me feel safer in bear country.
Just something short,quick and big !
If you are backpacking/camping and want to feel safer in bear country. Might I suggest bear spray. Having to explain your actions of shooting a bear (without a license) to a Wildlife Official or Police when you are not hunting is much more difficult. Not to mention the effectiveness of the bear spray vs your accuracy with a pistol/rifle/shotgun with a bear coming at you. And guess what, it works on bipeds with malicious intent just as well as it works on bears. Especially in those areas where firearms are not (legally) allowed.

Lastly, let's not forget about the other campers who are around when you are protecting yourself from the bear with a firearm. Are you shooting in a safe direction? Do you really want to take that chance?

I'm not telling you to leave all your firearms at home locked in the safe. Just be aware of the situation you are in and prepare accordingly. It's one thing if you are hunting bear and a completely different story when you are not.

I will not entertain the short barreled "brush gun" conversation you were having with others as to their effectiveness.
 

Ike85123

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If you are backpacking/camping and want to feel safer in bear country. Might I suggest bear spray. Having to explain your actions of shooting a bear (without a license) to a Wildlife Official or Police when you are not hunting is much more difficult. Not to mention the effectiveness of the bear spray vs your accuracy with a pistol/rifle/shotgun with a bear coming at you. And guess what, it works on bipeds with malicious intent just as well as it works on bears. Especially in those areas where firearms are not (legally) allowed.

Lastly, let's not forget about the other campers who are around when you are protecting yourself from the bear with a firearm. Are you shooting in a safe direction? Do you really want to take that chance?

I'm not telling you to leave all your firearms at home locked in the safe. Just be aware of the situation you are in and prepare accordingly. It's one thing if you are hunting bear and a completely different story when you are not.

I will not entertain the short barreled "brush gun" conversation you were having with others as to their effectiveness.
My son and daughter carry bear spray. Its a good idea, but I also like to have a firearm. In northern arizona, it isnt too bad to deal with the wildlife. I would be much more scared of an elk than a bear to be honest. But we do travel occasionally also. And if I was being charged by a grizzly, I wouldnt waste time with the bear spray. I would rather take the chance on the explanation to the ranger/police.
I definitely stay aware of my situation, its the best way to avoid a bad one. Been hunting 40 years, I will do my best not to make a mistake now!
 

Red Leg

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My son and daughter carry bear spray. Its a good idea, but I also like to have a firearm. In northern arizona, it isnt too bad to deal with the wildlife. I would be much more scared of an elk than a bear to be honest. But we do travel occasionally also. And if I was being charged by a grizzly, I wouldnt waste time with the bear spray. I would rather take the chance on the explanation to the ranger/police.
I definitely stay aware of my situation, its the best way to avoid a bad one. Been hunting 40 years, I will do my best not to make a mistake now!
I would actually rather have bear spray.

And because carrying a firearm into many areas where I like to take a fly rod would be a felony, I like to carry bear spray even more. But perhaps wildlife officers are different where you are in Arizona? Though I am curious - where do you find grizzlies in that state? Or are you worried about black bear attacks? In British Columbia, with which I am fairly familiar, grizzlies can be a real nuisance. Bear spray can be very effective.
 

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+1 on bear spray. I thought it was neat to carry a pistol for all of about 2 hours, then it noticed how heavy they are and how it needs to be in a chest holster otherwise it is just a weight in one’s pack.

I’ve seen a few folks carrying a 9mm pistol while out rifle hunting. If that adds a sense of security, great. To me they are mostly a big paperweight, especially if you have a rifle.
 

Ike85123

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I would actually rather have bear spray.

And because carrying a firearm into many areas where I like to take a fly rod would be a felony, I like to carry bear spray even more. But perhaps wildlife officers are different where you are in Arizona? Though I am curious - where do you find grizzlies in that state? Or are you worried about black bear attacks? In British Columbia, with which I am fairly familiar, grizzlies can be a real nuisance. Bear spray can be very effective.
I dont worry too much about any wildlife in arizona. I believe the elk is the most dangerous animal we have as a group.
I have a frind that is a underwater welder in alaska. I visit him every few years. We go off the beaten path for fishing the salmon run. We have had encounters 2 of the 4 times I went. Had to give a warning shot once and had to give up our fish both times. Lol
 

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The "best all around caliber" is not necessarily the best gun for your BIL.

As posters have said, a 7mm Rem Mag is a very good all around cartridge, as is one of the .300 magnums. But for a gun that will be used primarily for whitetail, I'd go with a .270 Winchester.

The magnums are great, but a shooter pays the price in recoil, ammo cost, muzzle blast, gun weight, and barrel length. The are really unecessary for most whitetail hunting and really serve no advantage for most hunters, especially beginning ones.

A .270 will be easy to shoot, carry, and cheap to practice with. It will also be entirely suitable for western hunting if he gets the chance. I'd be quite happy hunting elk with a good bullet in a .270 for the rest of my life. Just tell him to switch to the Federal 150gr Nosler Partition or 140gr Nosler Accubond when he does so.
 

Ike85123

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I would actually rather have bear spray.

And because carrying a firearm into many areas where I like to take a fly rod would be a felony, I like to carry bear spray even more. But perhaps wildlife officers are different where you are in Arizona? Though I am curious - where do you find grizzlies in that state? Or are you worried about black bear attacks? In British Columbia, with which I am fairly familiar, grizzlies can be a real nuisance. Bear spray can be very effective.
I have a bad habit of not explaining myself thoroughly. My apologies. I have gotten familiar with only talking to family and friends. People that know me, can fill in the blanks and know what im saying.
About 15yrs ago I found myself in a discussion about hunting aswell as cull hunting in africa. The discussion quickly turned into drama, with me being the hated hunter and animal killer. Everyone from kids, animal rights activists and the anti gun community hounded me. Posts to my kids,family,friends and work contacts. Including death threats. I have not joined any platform since .
Hopefully a fuller explanation will help.
As my original post says, spray can be good. ( fuller explanation here ).
I never go into naturr alone because of unforeseeable unknowns i.e. heart attack, snake bite and so on. I am normally with my son or daughter when roaming arizona. They both carry bear spray, with me and a gun acouple feet away.
I have never had any issues in the mountains of arizona. But i believe in carrying a firearm as a tool just like a first aid kit ( incase it is needed ).
We have no grizzlies, our dangerous animals amount to small bear,lion and bobcats for the most part that you might see. But in the mountains here I believe elk and rattlesnakes deserve the most caution. In southwest arizona we had problems with cats when i was younger. They would get too use to people and when they got older would prey on pets and dig in trashcans by the farm houses, sometimes would involve a person. They have simce built more homes, warehouses and Factories around my area, now we see very little cat activity.
The incident in alaska was different. A bear appeared on a hill behind us, while fishing. My buddy dropped his rod, had spray in one hand and his 44 in the other. I mysilf had my pistol out. He fired a warning shot after the bear took a couple steps forward, fearing the downhill movement against the spray. The bear backed up, we gathered our things and left him the fish.
I dont advocate shooting an animal that im not hunting. Im not gonna use a gun around people or structures unless it is completely needed. I dont stay in conventional campgrounds, as people is one thing I try to escape from when going into nature. I hope you can see what im trying to say now?
 

Red Leg

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I have a bad habit of not explaining myself thoroughly. My apologies. I have gotten familiar with only talking to family and friends. People that know me, can fill in the blanks and know what im saying.
About 15yrs ago I found myself in a discussion about hunting aswell as cull hunting in africa. The discussion quickly turned into drama, with me being the hated hunter and animal killer. Everyone from kids, animal rights activists and the anti gun community hounded me. Posts to my kids,family,friends and work contacts. Including death threats. I have not joined any platform since .
Hopefully a fuller explanation will help.
As my original post says, spray can be good. ( fuller explanation here ).
I never go into naturr alone because of unforeseeable unknowns i.e. heart attack, snake bite and so on. I am normally with my son or daughter when roaming arizona. They both carry bear spray, with me and a gun acouple feet away.
I have never had any issues in the mountains of arizona. But i believe in carrying a firearm as a tool just like a first aid kit ( incase it is needed ).
We have no grizzlies, our dangerous animals amount to small bear,lion and bobcats for the most part that you might see. But in the mountains here I believe elk and rattlesnakes deserve the most caution. In southwest arizona we had problems with cats when i was younger. They would get too use to people and when they got older would prey on pets and dig in trashcans by the farm houses, sometimes would involve a person. They have simce built more homes, warehouses and Factories around my area, now we see very little cat activity.
The incident in alaska was different. A bear appeared on a hill behind us, while fishing. My buddy dropped his rod, had spray in one hand and his 44 in the other. I mysilf had my pistol out. He fired a warning shot after the bear took a couple steps forward, fearing the downhill movement against the spray. The bear backed up, we gathered our things and left him the fish.
I dont advocate shooting an animal that im not hunting. Im not gonna use a gun around people or structures unless it is completely needed. I dont stay in conventional campgrounds, as people is one thing I try to escape from when going into nature. I hope you can see what im trying to say now?
Absolutely. Thank you. Many areas that I travel bringing a firearm of sufficient power to deal with a grizzly is either not legal or not practical. The newer bear sprays usually are legal, and are more effective than most handguns. My easiest carrying “big” revolver is one of the S&W Mountain Revolvers. Even if I was carrying it, my preferred first line of defense would be spray. But that is for the specific issue of a grizzly threat.

That said, I absolutely second your decision to go armed on any wilderness hike. My concerns in such an environment are primarily with bipeds. I don’t imagine you would have much use for bear spray in the Arizona mountains (or most of the lower 48) but an easy carrying and accessible handgun or rifle could be a life saver.

But we are both guilty of participating in a thread hijacking, and I suspect neither bear spray nor a .44 are probably very helpful to the OP about a best all around caliber. ;) Thanks for the clarification.
 
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Forrest Halley

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Well since we're in the middle of a good old fashioned thread hijack and somebody opened the door on the bear spray...I present to you this:
 

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Michaelhh375, good excerts! I have read most in the past, but enjoyable reading again.
Since my first Africa adventure, I have only carried my 375 H&H to Africa. But...you will never ever see me carrying that heavy of a rifle in the mountains of Colorado! It’s brutal enough at my age just hauling my butt up them! :ROFLMAO:
 

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CBH Australia

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I'm happy to be a .375H&H owner, it's one I plan to keep.

One I considered a classic after much reading.

After speaking to Bruce and others I decided the .280 so is a great cartridge. Not for the big stuff but otherwise a good all round hunting round. Sadly it's the one hunting rifle I've taken hunting yet.
 

Obi Wan Kenobi

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The "best all around caliber" is not necessarily the best gun for your BIL.

As posters have said, a 7mm Rem Mag is a very good all around cartridge, as is one of the .300 magnums. But for a gun that will be used primarily for whitetail, I'd go with a .270 Winchester.

The magnums are great, but a shooter pays the price in recoil, ammo cost, muzzle blast, gun weight, and barrel length. The are really unecessary for most whitetail hunting and really serve no advantage for most hunters, especially beginning ones.

A .270 will be easy to shoot, carry, and cheap to practice with. It will also be entirely suitable for western hunting if he gets the chance. I'd be quite happy hunting elk with a good bullet in a .270 for the rest of my life. Just tell him to switch to the Federal 150gr Nosler Partition or 140gr Nosler Accubond when he does so.

.280 Rem..................................Flies like a .270, recoil of a .270 muzzle blast of a .270 hits like a 30.06 .

I live in the southeast. Bean fields and corns fields and swamps. I shoot a .280.
 

Obi Wan Kenobi

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For African hunting I couldn't agree more. For North American hunting the best all around has been for over 118 years the 30-06. Just one mans opinion. Good hunting.

Most people are just bored with it, but the 30.06 is truly THE ONE for anything in NA except for brown and polar bears. Even though I've heard tales of polar bears being killed with 220 grain 06 bullets.

I have mine fine tuned for leopard this June in Zambia.
 

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