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Thread: Caribou gun

  1. #1
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    Default Caribou gun

    I do not know much about caribou hunting.
    Is a .270 or 30-06 sufficient for hunting them

    Thanks, Copperdog

  2. #2

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    Both are great choices.

  3. #3
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    Default

    Either would be perfect. But I would choose the 06.
    Tennessee

  4. #4
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    Default either one

    Caribou are generally not tough critters to kill. I might give a slight preference to the 270 because it has a flatter trajectory, but I've never actually taken a shot at a caribou where that would make the slightest bit of difference. I have also killed them with a 30-30, and I know a guy who has used a 6.5x55 for years.

  5. #5
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    Default

    I agree with your caliber choice.

    Taking into account your first sentence which say you don't know much about Caribou hunting, I'll add that Caribou are beautifull animals. Good table fare, and somewhat of an under-rated trophy also.

    Caribou are THE most dis-porportionate antlered animal in North Amercia. For example, white-tailed deer have small bodies with small antlers, elk have big bodies w/ big antlers, moose are big bodied-big antlers, and so on....
    A large Caribou bull body- is about the size of a very large mule deer body, or similar to a small bull elk body, but their antlers are more equivilent to a large bull elks' antlers. This extreme dis-porportionate body-to-antler size relation makes them an exceptional trophy.

    Assuming you'll be Caribou hunting sometime in the future, and you'll probably harvest one, and maybe you'll choose to have some taxidermy work done and have a shoulder mount made. You might consider also keeping the remaining hide and have it tanned, sure looks nice as a decoraction in any trophy room.

  6. #6
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Default

    I would make the choice based on what else you might hunt. If you think you might ever also hunt moose, you might want to go with the 30-06. If you're mainly a whitetail hunter, though, the .270 might be a better choice. Another thing to consider is the possibility of running into a curious grizzly on your caribou hunt. A 30-06 with heavy bullets might be a little better to rely on for grizzly protection, though that is rarely an issue.

    If you already own both and are just trying to pick which gun to bring, go with the one that you shoot best and are most comfortable with. Long-range shots are pretty common for caribou, so you want to be able to thread a needle with the thing.

    -Brian

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    Default

    either should be a good choice. the natives here actually prefer small bore rifles, like 223 or 22-250. i'm not suggesting that you go that small, just trying to give you an idea of their relative toughness. i'd go 270, or 30-06 if you want to be able to hunt other stuff with the rifle.

  8. #8
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    Thumbs up Either one...

    will work just fine, although if you plan on running into a bear along the way the 30-06 may give you more peace of mind. Good luck!

  9. #9

    Default Caribou caliber

    I have taken nearly 20 caribou in Alaska over the years. I have used a .30-06, .280 Remington, .338, .44 Magnum handgun, a .454 Casull, a bow and a .54 caliber muzzle loader. All calibers killed them just as dead as the next, but my FAVORITE is my .280, with the .30-06 a very close second. Either one you choose is excellent, but I would lean to the .30-06 over the .270, as has been said, it gives you an edge if you bump into a griz. This is a definite possibility up here.

    Shooting the .223 size is usually done from boats on swimming caribou, but some do take them on land, too. They normally go for head shots, as they usually want the meat more that the antlers.

    Whatever you go with, DO NOT shoot "bargain" brand ammo. Use the best you can find, such as Nosler Partition, Barnes, etc. if you reload, and the same if you buy factory ammo, such as Federal premium, Winchester Supreme, etc.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  10. #10
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    Default

    I appreciate the information.
    I do currently have a Remington 710 in .270 that I use for whitetails.
    I have been considering a Remington 700 in 30-06 and only use the .270 as a back up. I have read many posts on other forums about the Rem 710 falling apart as time goes by although I have had no problems with mine over the last three years.
    I do like the option of heavier bullets with the 30-06 for game larger than whitetails.
    I am a meat hunter so I consider everything I shoot a trophy. If I do shoot something for the wall it is even more of a trophy.
    I have always thought the caribou to be an interesting animal due to the body size compared to the antlers. Here in the lower 48 you do not hear much about caribou, mostly whitetails and elk.
    Several of you guys comented about some shots on caribou being long. What is considered a long shot?

    Thanks again,
    Brian

  11. #11

    Default Long Shots

    Brian,

    Since caribou typically frequent the tundra, it's not uncommon to have shots of 250-400 yards...I don't shoot much past 300 myself, but you can get some long shots up in AK.

    If you're like me and typically hunt Eastern whitetails in the woods, one of the biggest differences in hunting Alaska is learning to judge the distances well in open rolling country. If you have a range or somewhere else you can practice shots of 250 and 300 yards, it would be good to do so before your hunt! Also practice looking across open land, picking out a spot, and guessing how far it is, then walking it off or using a rangefinder to check your guess.

    Do a loit of practice from hunting positions (sitting, one knee, and offhand) and you'll be all set! Good luck on your hunt.

    Michael

  12. #12

    Default

    Good call MDHunter,

    Copperdog a laser range finder would a worth investment. It doesn't need to be an expensive one. Ranging by eye can be difficult in the open spaces of AK.

    PS I'm partial to the 270.

  13. #13
    Member Adventures's Avatar
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    Default rangefinder

    I will third the rangefinder for wide open spaces. The caribou i took at 350 yeards this year i would have guessed to be at around 250 and never would have hit it had i decided to take the shot not knowing the distance. My brother has a Nikon 800 gold and it was very useful.
    I also have alot of brown bears where i hunt caribou so a larger rifle was my choice even though my 243 probably would ahve done the trick for the caribou at a slightly closer yardage.
    Justin

  14. #14
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    Default gun choice

    I would take the one you feel most confident in. I would take my 06 only because it's my favorite. The two i've shot were between 12 and 80 yards. Pretty much any deer rifle and up will work just fine.

  15. #15
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    Default

    Either one is a good choice. Take the one you can shoot the best, practice realistic hunting shots before you go, get off the bench. Have a great time.
    An unarmed person is a victim waiting to happen.

  16. #16
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    Wink .30 cal

    copperdog;

    another vote for the .30-06. it is extra insurance against bears and if you decide to come back , it will serve you well for most any animal in ak. that you wish to hunt. you can poke a caribou with just about anything and they will go right down.

    i can not say the same for a .270.

    you can never go wrong with a .30-06.

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