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Thread: 338 for sheep?

  1. #1
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    Default 338 for sheep?

    What do you guys think of using a 338 for sheep? Is this to much gun.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by buckmark View Post
    What do you guys think of using a 338 for sheep? Is this to much gun.
    I wouldn't say that it is "too much", but it is definitely more than you need. Sheep aren't difficult to kill, so if you own something that is lighter, I would choose a different rifle. If the 338 is all you have or if you're hoping to also hunt grizzly bears, the 338 will work just fine.

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    Member hoose35's Avatar
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    Only problem with a .338 is they are so heavy, which in a sheep hunt I imagine can wear you out more than you think. A friend of mine sheep hunts and he used to use a ruger .338, he bought a .300wsm kimber and he loves it, it is really light and packs a pretty good punch

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    Default 338

    I don't think that the .338 is too much for sheep, especially in bear country. That's probably what I'll be packing for sheep this Fall. Actually, I'm still a little split on this. Part of me really wants to bring the .350 Rem.Mag. I know the limitations of it but dang, I love to pack the 673 around. With it's wicked open sites and detachable scope rings, I could still be hunting even if I messed up the scope. But then again, I like the longer range and larger scope on the 338. ????

  5. #5
    Member AlaskaTrueAdventure's Avatar
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    Default Boom-dead...

    I have whacked at least six (or eight ?) of my rams with a .338. It just zips through 'em. Boom-dead. Sure, it is a big gun for rams, which die easy. But the big gun also provides confidence when returning to the kill site for that second load of remaining meat or trophy.

    My .338, "big ugly", also works well as a walking staff. Well, I don't recommend that for everyone.

    dennis

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    Default Go light

    +1 on the going in with a light gun. Unless you have a packer or two going with you every oz you can save helps. Your pack alone will be very heavy with your necessary equipment, sheep meat, cape and horns. If you have a lightweight 338 take it but if it is heavy and you have a lighter gun that you are comfortable shooting I would opt for that. Good luck on your hunt.

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    Kinda robbing his thread here....I'm thinking of taking a 243 model 700 with 95-100 grain bullets. Is that too light? I know if I run into a bear....way to light. But for a sheep? I have a .338 and DO NOT want to bring that heavy pig. Love it for most everything else I hunt but too heavy.
    "One Last Cast"

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    Member hoose35's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fk 107 View Post
    Kinda robbing his thread here....I'm thinking of taking a 243 model 700 with 95-100 grain bullets. Is that too light? I know if I run into a bear....way to light. But for a sheep? I have a .338 and DO NOT want to bring that heavy pig. Love it for most everything else I hunt but too heavy.
    If those were my only two choices, I would be taking the .338. Not too light to kill a sheep, but you have little room for error on shot placement, you want your sheep to stop dead in his tracks.

  9. #9

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    Certainly not an expert but I enjoy these forums
    I purchased a .338 Remington 700 Mountain rifle some time
    back for backpacking type of hunting. It has a kevlar stock
    and seems to weigh about a pound less than a full size
    700 .300 UM in a Brown precision stock I have. I have never put them
    on a scale, just a guess, it may be a little more than a pound. In fact .338 Mountain rifle with bigger bore diameter may weigh a little less than a comparable .270 Mountain rifle.

    Main difference is in the contour of the barrel and it is two inches shorter
    on the Mountain rifle at 24".

    I have a 700 .308 HB Police rifle and it is the rifle I would like to shoot
    when accuracy counts, it weighs around ten pounds with scope. Of course I would have to make the guide tote it up to the top of that mountain.

  10. #10
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    Thumbs up Crack-stagger-dead

    fk107,
    Your .243 will kill rams, which die easy when shot in the vitals.
    I have a friend, a semi-retired master-guide outfitter, who routinely takes his grandkids out shootin sheep and black bears with a chopped-down-to-kid-size .243.
    Crack-stagger-dead.
    Location, location, location....
    ....shoot them, the sheep, in the proper place and it will be a good death.
    (Note that kids do not generally experience "ram/buck fever".)

    dennis

  11. #11
    Member L. G.'s Avatar
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    Just drew a Chugach sheep tag.

    It's either going to be a .308 Win or .338 Winny.

    The .308 will test 150 TTSX's vs 165 Accubombs.

    The .338 will test 200 gr Accubombs vs 210 TTSX.

    Whatever shoots best at 300 yds get the nod.

    I have a sherpa (son) going along . . .

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    Member c04hoosier's Avatar
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    The only time you can possibly have too much gun is if it is too heavy to pack up the mountain, or you can't control the recoil well enough to shoot accurately. There's no such thing as too dead...

  13. #13

    Default Frank Entsminger

    Frank Entsminger who is also a master sheep guide and has guided Rockefellers and royalty used a 243 winchester for several years. He presently uses a Mark Bansner 300WSM but hunting with a 243 has been done.

    Tom Butler who has a huge room full of monster rams uses a 330 Dakota chambered Model 70 as his sheep rig. He figures that if the chips are down and he needs to go beyond 500 yards for that old gummer he will be set.

    The one thing that I get about Sheep rifles is that they share a characteristic with guide bear guns. They have to be able function every single time in the worst possible conditions and be able to function with dirt, alders, crud and still be able to accurate put the bullet where it needs to go after a terrible trudge through hell. It doesn't have to be that bad but you should be prepared for it. This doesn't preclude you from having a rifle with a nice stock but you have to be prepared to ding it up.

    Sincerely,
    Thomas

  14. #14
    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    My .338 is too much gun (9.3 lbs of gun to be exact) to make me want to haul it up a mountian looking for a sheep.

    Particularly when it sits right next to a 6.5lb 300WSM...

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by hodgeman View Post
    My .338 is too much gun (9.3 lbs of gun to be exact) to make me want to haul it up a mountian looking for a sheep.

    Particularly when it sits right next to a 6.5lb 300WSM...
    I'm in the same boat.

    My Ruger M77 .338 with scope/sling/3 rounds in the mag is right up there at the 9 pound mark.

    My .308 with Scope/sling/and 4 in the mag is 6.1 pounds pretty easy to decide which one is going up the mountain with me.

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    Hodgeman, what kind of gun do you have set up at 6.5lbs.? I am starting to lean more towards getting a 300wsm. I was just thinking that the 338 would be better off as an all around gun. Some of you now have me worried about the weight issue.

  17. #17

    Default Take what you are used to

    I have shot eveything in Alaska with my A-Bolt .338 except a polar bear, including 9 sheep. I am very comfortable with it, know it's range and capabilities. When I did have to stand down a grizz I was glad I was not packing my wife's .270.

  18. #18
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    Default light

    I agree with most, go as light as you can. My sheep rifle is a 338 federal, tikka t3, with an aimpoint micro sight its well under 7 lbs.

  19. #19

    Default use it...

    A .338 and 210 Nosler Partitions. If you are ok with packing the rifle up and down miles and miles of steep mountains then use it. Rifle weight is a consideration and my old pre 64 Mod. 70 Featherweight 30-06 is still easier to pack then my custom 8 lb. Mod. 70 .338.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    A .338 and 210 Nosler Partitions. If you are ok with packing the rifle up and down miles and miles of steep mountains then use it. Rifle weight is a consideration and my old pre 64 Mod. 70 Featherweight 30-06 is still easier to pack then my custom 8 lb. Mod. 70 .338.
    Yesiree, Bob.
    Weight IS a consideration Sheep Hunting. That's probably the only hunting where it is. Use your lightest adequate rifle, whatever it is.

    My 338 WM weighs less than my other guns, all 7mm Calibers of one type of other, so I'd be good with my 338.

    338 WM, isn't too beeg for sheep, and besides you might run into a bar, and it's not too beeg for them either.

    Smitty of the North
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