Page 1 of 6 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 114

Thread: Bear hunt dilemma...

  1. #1
    Member Ak_Predator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    136

    Default Bear hunt dilemma...

    This spring I'll be venturing out for my first coastal bear hunt. I'll have the opportunity for blacks and/or browns. That being said, here's the pickle I'm in...

    7mm mag or .30-06??

    From what I've been reading the 7mag has better ballistics and more energy with a 175grain bullet. The .30-06 can be loaded with a higher grain bullet but the most I've felt comfortable shooting out of my .30-06 is 180grains. (accuracy issues with the higher grain bullet, 200+ yards)

    Should I sacrifice the accuracy and confidence and go with my .30-06 or stick with my 7mm mag which I know and feel comfortable shooting out to 3-400 yards?

    Any and all thoughts are appreciated...

  2. #2
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    13,391

    Default

    Personally speaking, if I were targeting browns I would stick with the 30-06, use heavy bullets, and keep my shots within 100 yards. I wouldn't take shots at coastal browns out at 300+ yards due to the difficulty in making accurate follow-up shots. At 50-100 yards with unobstructed visibility I would feel much more comfortable in my ability to put multiple shots into a brown bear, thus increasing the chances of a quick kill. I love my 7mm-mag, but it wouldn't be my choice for coastal browns, and again, I certainly wouldn't take long shots at a coastal brown.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Wrangell
    Posts
    7,599

    Default

    What Brian said.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    wasilla
    Posts
    788

    Default

    I would second that, but i have never been a fan of the 7mm. I have seen too many animal hit with a 7mm and they walk away before they know they are hit. I would agree that a 7mm is very accurate but a 30-06 is and has always been a tried and true performer with 180 to 200 grain bullets.
    good luck on your hunt

    Sweepint
    Wasilla, (when not overseas)
    '' Livn' The Dream ''
    26' Hewescraft Cuddy, twin 115 Yam

  5. #5
    Member 1Cor15:19's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Dillingham, AK
    Posts
    2,482

    Default

    I would not make ANY difference between the two cartridges for black or brown bear, if they are both properly loaded. Where you hit them and the bullet that does the hitting will make a lot more difference than the caliber or cartridge that you choose.
    Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.

  6. #6
    Member Ak_Predator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    136

    Default

    Thanks Brian! I think that's what I was looking for. I hadn't thought about that fact of the hunt.

  7. #7
    Member Lone Wolf1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    327

    Default

    Brian has good insight. I (personal ethical limit) would never take a shot at a bear over 100 yards where there is any cover close by -- too easy for them to disappear wounded before a follow-up shot can be taken. That's especially true for brownies. 30-06 with heavier bonded bullet would be my choice of the two weapons.

  8. #8

    Default

    I had the opportunity to hunt black bear in Montana last September. Use a 30-06 with 165 gr. nosler and the shot was about 125 yds. Bullet did tremendous damage to both front quarters. He appeared to flip over and die, but shot needed to be an inch further back to be perfect. Friends follow up shot missed when he flipped over. We track for 4 hours before the final shot. Bullet was just fine, but pump as many shots into the bear and do be very careful, very carful, when tracking the wounded bear. Dangerous always and scary at times.

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Nikiski, AK
    Posts
    125

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ak_Predator View Post
    Should I sacrifice the accuracy and confidence and go with my .30-06 or stick with my 7mm mag which I know and feel comfortable shooting out to 3-400 yards?
    Shot placement is everything...If you put a 175 gr. bullet through both of a bears lungs you will not need a follow up shot unless it is coming to eat you - especially if the bear isn't alerted to your presence when you take the shot. I would take the weapon I am most comfortable with and shoot with confidence.

  10. #10

    Default

    30-06-168 tsx. End of story

  11. #11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by south dakota View Post
    I had the opportunity to hunt black bear in Montana last September. Use a 30-06 with 165 gr. nosler and the shot was about 125 yds. Bullet did tremendous damage to both front quarters. He appeared to flip over and die, but shot needed to be an inch further back to be perfect. Friends follow up shot missed when he flipped over. We track for 4 hours before the final shot. Bullet was just fine, but pump as many shots into the bear and do be very careful, very carful, when tracking the wounded bear. Dangerous always and scary at times.

    Not to get off track...but i honestly dont think an inch would have made a difference. You had to track the bear prolly cuz you didnt 'break him down'...or not the right bullet...no reason you should have to track for 4 hrs if you did serious damage to both front shoulders

  12. #12
    Member bushrat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Now residing in Fairbanks from the bush
    Posts
    4,363

    Default

    Would be much different if it was a choice of .223 vs 30-06. But either way, I would always recommend you shoot whatever you are most practiced with and feel comfortable with. On top of that I'd also recommend to get into reloading and developing rounds that work well for you with some good bullets. Limiting your distance before shooting is always good advice, per Brian. But honestly, 7mag or 30-06, there is just no real difference there (if you are using the right bullet) in terms of stopping power. Either will do the job as long as you do the job. I'd take the lighter rifle <grin>.

  13. #13
    Member Ak_Predator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    136

    Default

    Thanks for the advice gents. Still undecided but went to the range Saturday, shot my 7mm mag and boy was it shooting good. Will have to get the .30-06 out and see how it's shooting with the 180gr bullets. Thanks again for the advice. Hopefully I'll have a bear to post up here this spring.

  14. #14
    Member kodiakrain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Kodiak, Ak
    Posts
    3,175

    Default

    I'd say, stick with Accuracy and Confidence,....all the way

    Take the rifle you like, and Know,....follow up shots, etc. considered,.. that's a big factor

    at any range tho,...it'll be the First One, that counts the most
    Ten Hours in that little raft off the AK peninsula, blowin' NW 60, in November.... "the Power of Life and Death is in the Tongue," and Yes, God is Good !

  15. #15
    Member martentrapper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Fairbanks, Ak.
    Posts
    4,190

    Default

    All you guys advocating shots at 100 yds.............is that your limit on all critters, why or why not?

    Pred, are you limiting yourself to only the largest bears? Plenty of bears, black or brown, that aren't any bigger than a heavy bull bou.
    Good bullets and good hits are what's important.
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

  16. #16
    Member Roland on the River's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    1,689

    Default

    Bears, especially Brown, have a tendency to make it into a brushpile whereas caribou tend to be on the tundra and therefore allows for followup shot. Just my take on it.

  17. #17
    Member 4merguide's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
    Posts
    9,748

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    All you guys advocating shots at 100 yds.............is that your limit on all critters, why or why not?
    On a big, heavily boned brownie you want that bear to absorb as much energy as the slug will give........so 100 yards or less is the ticket. Now a smaller blackie, (or other critters that wont eat you if you have to go in after it) is a different story.....

    btw..........I'd go with the 06' as well.......
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

  18. #18
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Ellensburg Wa.
    Posts
    109

    Default

    My personal rifle has been an 06 for years. I have others larger and small but has always been my fave. So many bullet weights to choose from but for most bear I like a heavy bullet more in the 220 range. Good luck, Ron.

  19. #19
    Member ninefoot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    alaska, all over the state
    Posts
    986

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ak_Predator View Post
    This spring I'll be venturing out for my first coastal bear hunt. I'll have the opportunity for blacks and/or browns. That being said, here's the pickle I'm in...

    7mm mag or .30-06??

    From what I've been reading the 7mag has better ballistics and more energy with a 175grain bullet. The .30-06 can be loaded with a higher grain bullet but the most I've felt comfortable shooting out of my .30-06 is 180grains. (accuracy issues with the higher grain bullet, 200+ yards)

    Should I sacrifice the accuracy and confidence and go with my .30-06 or stick with my 7mm mag which I know and feel comfortable shooting out to 3-400 yards?

    Any and all thoughts are appreciated...
    with brownies my advice is to worry much more about the hunting and less about the shooting. 30 caliber will serve you better than 7mm simply because its cutting a bit bigger hole, and bullet weight and hardness are much more important here than downrange accuracy. bears are extremely stalkable animals...load your 06 with 200+ grain bonded bullets and go kill a brown bear under 100 yrds...chip shot.

    black bears die easy...either will do. but when hunting both species simultaneously the obvious decision would be the one better suited for brown bear.

    haveing extensive experience with killing both species, i cant recall ever needing to shoot at a bear of either species past 200 yrds at the very extreme. wondering about the concern for making shots out to 3 or 4 hundred yrds, especially in coastal terrain. when they are 3 or 400 yrds from you:cut the distance in half... then a bit more....and start shooting. with brownies keep shooting till they stop moving. your 06 with bonded bullets will do just fine at normal bear hunting ranges. though neither one should be used past classic brown bear ranges (150 and less) and the 7mm is not a big bear cartridge in any circumstance (in my opinion)...though we all know it'll readily kill them in steady hands. lots can go wrong when shooting brown bear, and steady hands isnt the norm for hunters with little bear experience...

    just my couple pennies though...

    have fun, hunt em right, get close, and stay safe! spring is upon us... i'm chomping at the bit to start my spring bear season!

  20. #20
    Member Ak_Predator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    136

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post

    Pred, are you limiting yourself to only the largest bears? Plenty of bears, black or brown, that aren't any bigger than a heavy bull bou.
    Good bullets and good hits are what's important.
    Honestly, this is my 2nd to last spring due to the Air Force moving me fall 2014 and bc of that I'm not going to be picky. I'd like to get a 6ft+ black or around a 7-8ft+ brown but this will be my first bear, so as long as its not a runt, I'll take em.

Page 1 of 6 123 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •