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Thread: what cal rifle to buy for alaska

  1. #1

    Talking what cal rifle to buy for alaska

    ok guys iam a newby to the state of ak ..i plan on moveing up there next year time frame ..tell me if a 308 cal rifle for good for moose and other big game of middle alaska area ..i have been planing this move now for about a year now
    i have all ready a glock 17.and 17l. 9mm cal pistols and a tricked out m14 socom model 308.cal rifle for personal defense that will take care of the two legged game as need but would like something that would that would be used for hunting moose and other game for food as need
    i have been reading up on the 375 ruger and 375.h.&.h.magnum for bears for use as need in that area
    i like to have something like that for trips into the backcounty for hikeing and camping trips for the bears in the summer time .i want something that is that if i have to take the shot i will have a eough gun to stop the bear as need with a couple of shots
    i all so thought about a s&w.500.pistol with a 6."inchs long barrel and a aimpoint red-dot scope for bear county carry as a back up to the rifle
    any info would be helpfull thank you

  2. #2

    Default part two of the idea rifle

    would a 12.ga shotgun loaded with slugs be good for bear county for close range if need to get a shot off ..
    i was thinking about a mossberg 12.ga 590 shotgun with 9.rds in the tube and chamber for bear county loaded with 500.grain lead slugs for use as need

  3. #3
    Member Phil's Avatar
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    Default Response

    I'm a non-res but I have hunted Alaska many times (fortunately so far - no close bear encounters) and here are as many responses as I can think of.

    1. Check the forum archives - this subject has been the subject of many
    discussions.
    2. Avoid bear encounters if at all possible - see #1
    3. There is a major difference between killing a brown bear and stopping
    one that is charging. Jake (a.k.a. Brnbr) guides on Kodiak and carries
    a .416 - 'nuff said.
    4. Carry a .338, a .300 Win Mag, or a .300 WSM. I carry either a 30-06
    when deer hunting or a .375 Weatherby (a wildcat rifle that will also
    shoot .375 H & H). I owned a Win. Model 70 chambered in .375 H &
    H that I didn't like because it seemed barrel heavy. If I were buying
    today, I would take a close look at the .375 Ruger.
    5. There is no such thing as "too big" when it comes to stopping a brown
    bear at full charge.
    6. Slug guns don't seem to have a big following for bear stopping. We
    keep a .450 Alaskan in the tent when sleeping in bear territory.
    7. Both my hunting buddies carry large handguns - I'm not a proponent
    of handguns for bears - although there will be lots of others that
    do not agree.
    8. Best advice - see #1.

  4. #4

    Default

    thanks i belive in n1 rule see them before they see me ..i just do not want to shoot it if i can not make conact with bear before it see me
    i was in the military and learn a lot about keeping my head on a swivel when out in the backcounty
    i try to get some ideas about what to buy before i leave to move up there
    i going in late feb or early march time frame to look for some land up there to build on next to a small town area
    i have hunted deer and elk and wild hogs here in the lower 48 mainly out west area

  5. #5

    Thumbs up choices....

    What most Alaskans use, 30-06, .300 Win. Mag., .338 Win. Mag. and .375 H&H. Either one of these is a good choice with a well constructed bullet. All of them have a very long and proven record on Alaskan big game. Ammo is always available for these calibers. I always hunt with a controlled round feed Mod. 70 Winchester.

  6. #6

    Default

    This has been discussed many times, look at the forums to get many opinions. Yes the 308 can work on moose but not my first choice. I dont think you need to buy a cannon. Your 12 gauge loaded with good quality hard cast slugs is just fine. What really matters is something you will carry and shoot well without having to think about it. I hunt all big game with a 300 weatherby mag. My camp gun is a marlin guide gun in 45/70 loaded with buffalo bore hammer heads. My pistol I always carry is a smith 460 v with 395 grain hard cast. I think the scope on the pistol is a mistake, just something else to get in the way and much slower target aquisition but just my opinion. Enjoy alaska

  7. #7

    Default

    .30-06' to .375HH. Stay away from the newer (wsm, wssm,federal, ruger) cartridges if you expect to travel and may have to purchase ammo, the calibers I mentioned you will find ammo for anyplace that sells it.

    Depending on my mood for the hunt I will take either my 06' or my .338WM.
    I don't think you can beat a 12ga for hiking/brush gun etc. if you have a close encounter of the bear kind and have to take defensive action, a 45-70 lever gun would be my next choice.

    If you choose a handgun, get as large as you can shoot well and leave the scope off.

  8. #8
    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    Default

    Buy a good quality 30.06 and learn to shoot it well.....you can kill anything in AK with it (shooting it well is the key though).
    AKmud
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    The porcupine is a peacful animal yet God still thought it necessary to give him quills....

  9. #9

    Default

    I use a 300wby for everthing except brown bears. I use a 375 ultra mag for that.

    338 win mag is a good choice too.

    I have a weatherby ultra light (300) and its just about perfect IMO. 150 for blacktail 180 for moose 165 sheep goat bou

  10. #10
    Member DJ HUNTN AK's Avatar
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    Default .338 win mag

    My .338 has never let me down!
    DJ

  11. #11
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Default

    45/70 will handle everything if you are willing to just take game with-in a hundred yards or so.12ga and slugs is great but you don't need nine shots as at most you might get off two or three if the worst happens.30.06 is fine, hunt with the smaller bullets and load up with 220 gn when leaveing. Like others have stated not every little shop will carry a full line of ammo in all brands and sizes.The thing with brownies is stopping them not killing as most rounds will kill one given enough time. I really depends on where you move to. On Prince of Wales island you just got black bears and a 308 is fine for that area. The brown bears in the interior as a rule are smaller and may take less gun to stop and some places along the coast no matter what you carry at times it will seem to small.If your rifle has a scope it is nice if it also has iron sights as a back up if the scope fails. Once you pick your gun bring a couple hunderd rounds of good ammo with you,not the cheap bargin stuff but good ammo with good hold together bullets. My experance is just in the S.E. Alaska region and I would guess the 338 is the most common round unless you hand load then many like the 338/06 but with the new ammo in 45/70 its seeing more use than ever.

  12. #12
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    Wink .06

    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    What most Alaskans use, 30-06, .300 Win. Mag., .338 Win. Mag. and .375 H&H. Either one of these is a good choice with a well constructed bullet. All of them have a very long and proven record on Alaskan big game. Ammo is always available for these calibers. I always hunt with a controlled round feed Mod. 70 Winchester.
    I ask my self that question everytime it's time to go hunting . Should I take my 300 or should I take my .06 or should I take the 338 ultra or should I take my 375 ? It's tough making decisions when they are all capable of deliving ! ! ! Just plain preferrance . Go with a .06 .

  13. #13

    Default .338wm

    I just bought a new rifle. I have carried a .270 all my life when hunting, have shot up to a moose and black bear with it, and love it. It is a fun rifle to carry, flat shooting, doesn't kick much so you can learn to shoot it well, and nice and accurate. It is a browning a bolt with Leupold 3x9. However, as we see more and more bears in the Kodiak area I decided to upgrade to a .338 win mag. Still a nice, flat shooting rifle, common ammo, but more power if something tries to eat me. Still waiting for the scope, but have been trying to decide what to get (to compliment my .270) for some time, and the research led me to this. Carried a .375 H&H when guiding, another fine round, and carried that with the idea that I might need to stop a bear or finish off a client's animal (never had to do either.) Finally, the .338 Lapua sure looks sexy, but hear you have to have quite the shoulder to shoot it. Anyhow, good luck and stick to rule #1.

  14. #14

    Default made my choice

    well after reading all the post here ..i have to go with a 30.06 rifle with diff loads for diff games with back up a sw 500 revolver with a aimpoint scope mounted on the pistol instead of sight with crossdraw kydex holster

  15. #15
    Member kahahawai's Avatar
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    Default You Will See...

    The Bottom line, There is NO One Caliber for Alaska!!! I moved up here with two rifles: a 30-06 and a Rem. 7mm Ultra Mag, Now I have 12 rifles, and the 30-06 just sits in the back of the safe, and most of my rifles are synthetic with stainless. For different types of game in several different types of terrain different calibers work better than others. As I started hunting more here i started learning about ballistics and coefficients and I've found that for me, the 270 WSM works the best on Sheep in the mountains shooting great distances and perhaps Caribou, 300 win mag on up for bears, moose, and goats. However for others, different calibers may work better, but when you come up here, you will see. IMO the 30-06 is not the flattest shooting caliber out, its a great all around cal. but theres others that work better.

    On a final note: If your carrying enough gun in a rifle, I don't see the need for a side arm, I learned that real quick up here, I only carry a side arm when I'm bowhunting and fishing/hiking. You can never have enough guns here in Alaska from a .22 for Ptarmigan to a .375 for brown bears, you best better get you a gun safe.

  16. #16

    Default

    cant go wrong w/ an 06. I still think the aimpoint is a mistake for a backup. Just make sure you file the front site off

  17. #17

    Default

    [

    On a final note: If your carrying enough gun in a rifle, I don't see the need for a side arm, I learned that real quick up here, I only carry a side arm when I'm bowhunting and fishing/hiking. You can never have enough guns here in Alaska from a .22 for Ptarmigan to a .375 for brown bears, you best better get you a gun safe.[/quote]

    My 2 cents and yes thats about all it's worth. I carry a handgun because I never take it off when in the field. Seems like everytime I set the rifle down for whatever reason, thats when the nasties show up. Pistol is also nice when you get older and have to get up in the middle of the night to pee lol Is it my primary, no, but it's always there.

  18. #18

    Default rifles

    this is what i have so far in the way of rifles and pistol
    springfield m1a socom model 308 cal
    ruger no-1-rifle 308 cal
    gamo pellet rifle 22.cal
    walther lg 300 march air rifle.177 cal

    hand guns
    glock 17 9.mm cal
    glock 17l tricked out 9.mm cal with lots of goodies attched to it for a fun gun

    duty handgun
    glock 37 45.gap cal
    glock 39 45.gap cal bug gun

    went to the gun store today to buy the a new rifle and pistol ..the guy at the shop told me that i was crazy for moveing up there ..after pulling the pin ..
    but he order me a new howa rifle .in 30.06 cal and a sw model 500 handgun package that they have on there web site for use
    went on line after the work and order a new scope and aimpoint for the guns

  19. #19

    Default

    There is always some way for me to justify another gun. Do I need anymore, no, will I get more , yes. I have some just because.

  20. #20
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    Default

    but he order me a new howa rifle .in 30.06 cal and a sw model 500 handgun package that they have on there web site for use
    went on line after the work and order a new scope and aimpoint for the guns[/QUOTE]

    NICE!!!! I have rarely ever seen packages sold like this or ever for that matter. Good choice though. I take a .308 CRF SS Winchester Black Shadow and the .44 mag S&w SS 4" revolver as the two gun battery and throw in a 45-70 guide gun for good measures.

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