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Thread: Sometimes You Go Back

  1. #1

    Default Sometimes You Go Back

    Sometimes you go back to what worked in the past. It was 35 degrees in obscure light on a cold October morning as I silently moved down a shaded canyon with Ponderosa pines on both sides towering up like sky scrapers. I was moving only about 300 yards every hour or so, glassing both sides of the ridges and cliffs above me. Looking through the trees for that black or brown shadow I had seen so often in this Arizona canyon that was part of the Apache National Forrest.

    Already satisfied with my hunt even though my quarry was not yet found or taken. It was the place in all it's beauty that captured my imagination as I moved alone in anticipation of bagging a certain black bear that left his mark all over that place. Around every bolder or turn in that canyon I expected that day to see him.

    Four and a half hours I moved getting further away from the mouth of the canyon. The wind changed 180 degrees and I had to turn back. I thought to myself "man what luck, I was so sure that the conditions were right and now this". As I turned to go back I said to myself, "don't just walk out hunt every step of the way back and don't rush it."

    After an hour and a half working my way back I stopped to glass an open place in the trees above me and there he was about 90 yards away. The wind was in my favor and the bear had not seen me. I lifted my 30-06 with a 165gr Sierra HPBT and put the cross hairs right on a perfect broad side shot and pulled the trigger. He leaped in the air, hit the ground and slid about 30 yards down the side of the canyon and laid there dead.

    Now at this time in my life I had moved to my fast Weatherby cartridges and tough bullets like the TSX and A-Frames. So why I picked up my 06 that day with my deer load and left my 300Wby I really don't know. I guess my reason was out of nostalgia and affection for a cartridge that I had hunted most of my life with and have a soft spot for in my heart. I had not hunted big game with my 06 for three years. To my surprise the 165gr Sierra Game King HPBT took the heart and lungs out the other side and left a tennis ball size hole.

    Even though I really like my fast hard hitting cartridges I still have a place in my hunting life for the 30-06 and that is why I have bought another one lately to replace the three I sold. I guess that is why men like Whelen, Page, Swank, Waters, Pittenger and even O'Connor liked to use the 30-06.

    In closing, I found some concluding remarks in an article that I wrote 20yrs ago and it reminded me why I feel the way I do about the 30-06. Here is the quote from the article: "For those who buy the 30-06, surely are not doing so out of a lack of knowledge. The 30-06 is like a good horse that you ride because he won't supprise you or let you down. So just like a good horse that one would trust, I take my 30-06 in to unexpected terrain and circumstances where it is good to have something you know will work."

    Was it the best bullet to use? NO!! Was the whole day a lot of fun? YOU BET!! Will I use the 30-06 again? WITHOUT A DOUBT!! Why? BECAUSE IT WORKS!!
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  2. #2
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    Thumbs up It always works....

    That was a very fine post BT, one of your best and I couldn't agree more.

    The all American 30-06 has been the standard to which others are judged and for good reason. It works so well, it is so easy to shoot and will bring home venison with any number of bullets, premium or home made. I will never be without one.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  3. #3

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    Murphy, I will never be with out one again. A 30-06 is just a got to have in the inventory gun for so many reasons because it is a good general go to cartridge. Nothing spectacular but can do a lot of jobs well and as I said on another thread just "Meat and Potatoes".
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  4. #4
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    Default

    The technical journey through the world's rifle cartidges (factory and wild cat) has been for me an exciting and fabulous trek. It does seem to me just recently I have too turned the bend to where I started............. moderate velocities, fair to bold sectional densities, cup and core bullets.......did I say 30-06? Oh yaa, thats what I meant.

    Beartooth, very enjoyable post. Thanks.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastwoods View Post
    The technical journey through the world's rifle cartidges (factory and wild cat) has been for me an exciting and fabulous trek. It does seem to me just recently I have too turned the bend to where I started............. moderate velocities, fair to bold sectional densities, cup and core bullets.......did I say 30-06? Oh yaa, thats what I meant.

    Beartooth, very enjoyable post. Thanks.
    Thank you, and I have been on that journey through the world's of rifle cartridges (factory, customs and wild cats) and what a run. Yet, I missed my two custom and three factory 30-06's that I let go for more speed and power. Now I have brought back into my fold the standard by which all are judge against. Glad I have turned the bend and given an old friend his long deserved place among my hunting rifles. The 30-06 is what it is and that ain't bad at all.
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  6. #6
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    Default Yup

    Mighty fine bit of writing BT...I was in the canyon with you as I read it.

    I have enjoyed all the different calibers that I have been fortunate enough to experience, but in all honesty my reloading bench has much more '06 brass and .30 caliber bullets than anything else. Heaven forbid that I could only have one rifle, but if I did...it would be the '06...hands down. It's where I started, and where I started my kids with their first centerfire rifles.

  7. #7
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    Default Now you went and done it

    and boy is my wife going to be mad at you!! I just recently traded off my 2nd 06 for a 338 Federal. While not a bad cartridge I just don't have a feel for it..if you know what I mean. With my 06 it was like an extension (used it every year for over twenty years), and though I know this rifle is brand new it just doesn't feel right. I guess after walking the canyon with you I've made up my mind, anyone need a slightly used Ruger in 338 Federal? so I can get an 06 back?
    I can't recall the specs on the 338 Federal without looking but on the 06 Trim to length is 2.484 and Max overall case 2.494 etc, not to mention the loads 59 gr RL19 behind a 180gr Hornady SP.
    Maybe few more rounds down range will boost the confidence in the 338 round, but anyways thanks for the story.

    After reading this I know what your asking. Why I didn't just keep the 06 anyways and I probably should have. I have always subscribed to the theory of have on gun and know and use it well. I figured the switch over to the 338 wouldn't be so painful...

  8. #8

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    imthenra, you just blame it on me and tell your wife I am at fault. 338 Fed is a good round. But nothing is more versatile than a good .30 Cal. and the 06 carries that banner very well. If I had only one choice of a cartridge to hunt game from coyote to the big ones in North America I would more than like pick the 06. If I had only one choice to hunt the world I would pick my 375Wby. You might say well where does that leave your 300Wby????? SOME WHERE IN BETWEEN!!!!!
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  9. #9

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    BT, I really enjoyed you story. Just a couple of things: It might not have been the best bullet but, on that day, it was the right bullet. And, you forgot the part at the end where you write, "Now the real work began. I took out my custom knife, made from the same steel alloy as the receivers on my Weatherby rifles and . . . "

  10. #10

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    Beartooth, truely a great and sentimental post Someday I might start a thread on what I think of the 30.06, but for now I will let you and your ott six buddies bask in your sentimental glory

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer55 View Post
    BT, I really enjoyed you story. Just a couple of things: It might not have been the best bullet but, on that day, it was the right bullet. And, you forgot the part at the end where you write, "Now the real work began. I took out my custom knife, made from the same steel alloy as the receivers on my Weatherby rifles and . . . "
    Yeah Flyer55, I did forget the part about the Weahterby knife (if there is such a thing and if there is I would buy one)
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

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