Top three African calibers

Ayaan Jakhura

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If you were to open up a safari outfitter in a remote area in Africa, say places like the caprivi, Zambezi valley and flood plains, the Selous, the Luangwa and other areas similar to this. If you were only allowed three guns which ones would you take and why?
 

peras

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A .375 h&h will be number one choice. Reason being ammunition availability and all round benefits. Hunting from Duiker to Elephant.
Second will be a larger back up rifle. Most probably 458 Lott. Due to their popularity.
Third will be a smaller camp rifle either 308 or 30-06.
 

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A .375 h&h will be number one choice. Reason being ammunition availability and all round benefits. Hunting from Duiker to Elephant.
Second will be a larger back up rifle. Most probably 458 Lott. Due to their popularity.
Third will be a smaller camp rifle either 308 or 30-06.

I presume ammo availability is another reason.
 

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I have minimal experience, but went on a hunt with Pieter at PawPrints in September using my 375 H&H. Took 300gr softs (Barnes TSX) and solids (HornadyDGS) at Pieter’s suggestion. Softs worked for the Cape buffalo, bushbuck and bushpig while the solids worked perfect for duiker.
On a previous hunt I used a 308 caliber, 300 WM, but a 30-06 would have worked just as well. Took kudu, zebra, impala, blue Wildebeest, gemsbok and nyala.
IMO the 458 Lott is an excellent backup cartridge for a PH to cover me with, but it hurts me to shoot one:cry:! Johan with PawPrints did excellent covering me with his 458 Lott on the buffalo part of my hunt.
 

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275 Rigby, 9.3x62 and 470 NE I’ve used all 3 in Africa with good results
 

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I think the key to this question is the "remote" issue. You want rifles with a broad range of usefulness, rather than what you'd like to have, if you were on a three gun safari. And you want ammo to be readily available.

I would have:

1. An everyday rife, which for me is a .300 Win Mag - ammo is found everywhere (where ammo is found!). But anything from about a .270 to about a .338 would do for an everyday rifle;

2. A large rifle for the big stuff - in my case, a .404 Jeffery or a .416 Rigby. While neither of these is the best charge stopper, either will handle everything there is in Africa, and the ballistics are pretty good, allowing you to reach out a bit more than some of the bigger calibers without having to aim at the sky. But again, anything from about a .375 to .458 would do for a big rifle. Bigger than a .458 you're getting into specialized rifle territory, and doubles don't have the range, so I would limit my big rifle to a .458. You can make it a Lott if you really feel the need, but it's not necessary. For those who say that the bigger Weatherby's will also work, I agree, but I don't like Weatherby's, so they aren't invited (plus ammo is hard to find in Africa).

3. Lastly, a 12 gauge shotgun. In a remote area a shotgun would be far more useful than adding another rife, both in terms of shooting and self protection.
 

ActionBob

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I would really want 5 and these are based on effectiveness, covering all needs, and ammo availability.
1. 12 gauge O/U.
2. .22 LR, Mag, or Hornet.
3. 275 Rigby/7x57 , 30-06 or 300 win mag,
4. a 375 H&H,
5. 458 Lott
And I would feel much better having a Glock 19 as a sixth;)

Limited to 3 I think I would go with 12 gauge, 375 and 458 if elephant are expected to be hunted. If no elephant I would go with 12 gauge, 30-06, and 375. If the focus was hunting buffalo, might also go with the 375 and 458 option.
 

BrokenArrow

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I am glad to see the 7x57/.275 Rigby mentioned. Yes, I am a bit biased...
I think quite a few PH’s here recommend the .300 Win Mag (I guess the .300WSM would be included), as a single rifle choice for plains game. But this is not what the OP put forward.

I agree;
.30-06
.375 H&H
One of the .450 calibers like the .458 Lott
 

IvW

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If you were to open up a safari outfitter in a remote area in Africa, say places like the caprivi, Zambezi valley and flood plains, the Selous, the Luangwa and other areas similar to this. If you were only allowed three guns which ones would you take and why?

From what you are asking it appears you are asking what an outfitter or PH may take or use. The areas are all inclusive of DG.

Therefore I would take:

1. 500 Jeff for the big stuff
2. 375 H&H for the rest and clients use.
3. 9.3x74R/12ga combination-for leopard follow up as well as a bit of wingshooting and camp meat.

If I could afford doubles:

1. 500 NE
2. 450/400 NE
3. the same 9,3x74R/12ga combination.
 

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I agree with Pieter. I have all three and would be pleased to use them hunting anywhere in Africa.
 

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Everyone seems to be on a similar wavelength here and my choices would be very similar. These are the calibers/CRF bolt rifles I own, load for and use so am most comfortable with-
338-06, 416 Rem Mag, 450 Watts.
 

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12ga
30.06
375
 

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A .375 h&h will be number one choice. Reason being ammunition availability and all round benefits. Hunting from Duiker to Elephant.
Second will be a larger back up rifle. Most probably 458 Lott. Due to their popularity.
Third will be a smaller camp rifle either 308 or 30-06.

Excellent summary!
 

johnnyblues

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No wrong answers here.
 

seattlesetters

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If I could take any three:

.275 Rigby
.318 Westley Richards
.404 Jeffery

Today’s versions:

6.5 Creedmoor
.338 Federal
.416 Ruger
 

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