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Thread: Black Bear ammo

  1. #1
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    Arrow Black Bear ammo

    Im coming to prince of wales and the petersburg area in september to try for a black bear and deer. can anyone suggest what type of 30.06 ammo would be best. i live in missouri and have plenty of whitetail ammo, but i assume it would be different, thanks i appreciate the help!

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    Member Kay9Cop's Avatar
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    Black bears aren't much tougher than deer. If you're shooting a premium 165 or cup and core 180 I think you'll be fine. It's all about good shot placement.
    "Beware the man with only one gun; he may know how to use it."

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    Member AlaskaTrueAdventure's Avatar
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    Default Black Bear Ammo

    I prefer to whack black bears with 165 or 180 grain bullets out of a 30-06.
    A 150 grain will also kill 'em. I prefer bigger bullets only because I like having an exit hole. Two holes generally drip more blood out and onto the ground which makes the tracking job, should it be necessary, easier.
    Shoot them black bears in the "boiler room" and it will be a "good death". Overall, black bears, shot in the chest cavity, die easy. But just like whitetail deer hunting, if shot in the wrong place it will be a tough tracking job for you and a "bad death" for the bear.

    Just as Kay9cop indicated above, bullet placement, at reasonable range, is your most important consideration for killing the bear fast, and keeping you out of the bushes.

    My friend, a semi-retired master guide, takes a grand kid out most every May for their 11th or 12th birthday party black bear hunt. He and the grand kids are 4 for 4 with a little .243 with the stock chopped down to kid size. He "guides" them to take only broadside, double lung shots, and each black bear has tipped over within fifty+- yards.

    Hope this helps a tiny bit...

    Dennis

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    Member Dan in Alaska's Avatar
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    When dispatching bears, I prefer that my first shot takes out both shoulders with a broadside shot. A bear can cover a lot of ground with a double lung shot, so I like to bust an axel and keep them close to the beach.

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    Thumbs up Go with the 180 grainers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan in Alaska View Post
    When dispatching bears, I prefer that my first shot takes out both shoulders with a broadside shot. A bear can cover a lot of ground with a double lung shot, so I like to bust an axel and keep them close to the beach.
    I agree as well and prefer this method, especially on things that can have a potential to bite back. Break 'em down and bust them bones... (Also works great on moose if it's close to water and you don't want them to run into it.)

    As for the 30-06, I like 180grains. The 180gr Nosler Partition was what I've used and it flies great, hits hard. Good combo... It has worked great for me on caribou, blacktail deer, mulies, Roosevelt elk, mtn.lion and blackies. My oldest son now uses that same gun/setup and has taken elk, deer and black bear cleanly with it. Good luck in SE...

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    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    I shoot 150 grain Barnes TSX and I've never had a bear (or any animal for that matter) go more than about 40 yards. They are wicked.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

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    thank you all very much for your help!

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    Bear are not bullet proof and many would have you think. A good 165 or 180grn bullet will do just fine. As always its more where you put the bullet than what bullet and velocity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan in Alaska View Post
    When dispatching bears, I prefer that my first shot takes out both shoulders with a broadside shot. A bear can cover a lot of ground with a double lung shot, so I like to bust an axel and keep them close to the beach.
    While that's true to a degree, I have a strategy depending on how close to the beach the bear is.

    If the bear is walking toward the beach, I'll just double-lung him so he keeps walking and dies at the water's edge.

    If he's already at the water, I'll break both of the front shoulders so he stays there.

    If he tries to run away, I'll shoot the hips out so he leaves a trail as he runs.

    Works for me.

  10. #10
    Member Alaska Bush Hunter's Avatar
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    Thumbs up 150gr TSX

    Another Vote for the 150gr TSX in the 308 Win or 30-06.

    In the 300 WSM the 150gr TSX at 3300 FPS make a great Black bear, deer, caribou load.......best of all saves alot of meat.

    The new Winchester Power Max load with the Bonded bullet should be excellent for Black bear.

  11. #11
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    405 grain thumper from a 45/70. Shoot it where you want it to die (geographically speaking) and that is where it will stay I carry a 270WSM w/ premium 130-140 grain bullets. I have little doubt that a 308 w/ 150grn Cor-Lokt bullets would kill them all day long.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by swampdonkey View Post
    I agree as well and prefer this method, especially on things that can have a potential to bite back. Break 'em down and bust them bones... (Also works great on moose if it's close to water and you don't want them to run into it.)

    As for the 30-06, I like 180grains. The 180gr Nosler Partition was what I've used and it flies great, hits hard. Good combo... It has worked great for me on caribou, blacktail deer, mulies, Roosevelt elk, mtn.lion and blackies. My oldest son now uses that same gun/setup and has taken elk, deer and black bear cleanly with it. Good luck in SE...
    My wife took a 21" POW bear last spring with this round from a .308 win. Bear took three steps then deflated like a pillow...

    RW

  13. #13

    Default .338?

    Against my better judgement, I recently sold my trusty .30-06 and now I am left only with my .338. I am finally getting around to planning a black bear hunt and I am wondering if the .338 will be overkill. Any thoughts ?

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    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goblue View Post
    Against my better judgement, I recently sold my trusty .30-06 and now I am left only with my .338. I am finally getting around to planning a black bear hunt and I am wondering if the .338 will be overkill. Any thoughts ?
    If you don't mind the recoil, what's the problem? I think the 30-cal.s probably are the median caliber for most black-bear hunting--with many using smaller and larger calibers. Nothing wrong with a .338, especially if it's all you have and especially if you might be hunting larger ones.

  15. #15

    Default No problem...

    I guess there is no problem, just wanting to make sure that when all is said and done I have a hide that is worth displaying. What grain bullet would you suggest?

  16. #16
    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goblue View Post
    I guess there is no problem, just wanting to make sure that when all is said and done I have a hide that is worth displaying. What grain bullet would you suggest?
    I would think that a 250gr .338 bullet moving at about the same speed as a 30-06 180gr bullet would not damage the hide--it just would penetrate cleanly and make a little bigger hole.

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    Last black bear I shot was with an .06 using the 180gr Black Talon, Winchester. Definately made two holes. A solid bullet that is tough to come by these days.

  18. #18

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    I see most of my bears at the bewitching hour, (right before dark) so I don't want to be screwing around with a head lamp looking for a double lunged bear in beach scrub shot with a cup/core. I like to anchor him on the beach with smashed shoulders via a tsx, and skin him out when he's warm.

  19. #19

    Smile well...

    For over 50 years the 30-06 and 180 grain Nosler Partitions have been reliably making gut piles in Alaska. Near or far, fast or slow, lung shot or heavy bone. At any reasonable range, if you put them in the right spot you have a dead critter. If your gun will put 3 of them into a 2" or smaller group at 100 yards then go hunting.

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