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Thread: .308 hunting

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    Default .308 hunting

    Just wondering what everone's opnion is on this question: What is the smallest and largest animal you would take with a .308 in Alaska. Serious replies please

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    Member northriver21's Avatar
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    I don't have a ton of experience with the .308, but I bought one for my kid last year. He has already taken 2 caribou and a fork horn moose with it and all 3 have been quick clean kills.

    You are going to get tons of shot placement comments on this one but there's my 2cents.

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    The .308 Winchester ..."whitebread"...pure vanilla...and perfect for anything/everything smaller than AK Peninsula brown bears. Shot placement... has that been mentioned yet? Pick your shots, as always.

    Favored .308 Winchester critters would be black bears and caribou. But any critter made of flesh and supported by bone and filled with blood will die dead when enough blood leaks out of a bullet/bolt/arrow hole.

    (For big bears I do prefer big holes.)

    dennis

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Assuming you mean 308win then the smallest would be a grouse, rabbit or squirrel. Largest would be a griz.

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    I've hunted a lot with the .308. I've been happy hunting with one in the Interior and I killed a pile of stuff in the L48 with several- I'd likely choose something different for coastal hunting though.

    Everytime I spend $$$ for .300WSM, .338WM and .375Ruger cartridges I miss my .308 a lot.

    As others have said- good shot placement trumps everything else.

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    Way back in 87-92 the only high powered rifle I owned was a .308 Win. During that time frame I took caribou, blacktails, dall sheep and one grizz. I do not necessarily recommend using a .308 on grizz, but it obviously can be done. I wouldn’t hesitate to use it on moose with an appropriate load and good shot placement.

  7. #7

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    My wife took a 7'4" B&C black bear a couple years back with her little .308. Bullet choice and shot placement mean more than caliber. She used 165gr Nosler Partitions for a double lung at about 70 yards. Bear took two steps and deflated like a pillow.

    ...and her shot didn't damage nearly as much meat as my .338 did on my bear.

    RW

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    Default Marlin express 308

    Been looking for the Marlin Express in .308 for a while. So far a goose egg (haven't tried real hard, just up here and the Anch SW. I'm excited to try it out. I think it'd be good on everything except bears. And it'll work for bears, just not my first choice.
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    Member 1Cor15:19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grinch424 View Post
    Just wondering what everone's opnion is on this question: What is the smallest and largest animal you would take with a .308 in Alaska. Serious replies please
    I've used a .308 for deer a good bit, but never had a real love affair with the cartridge. That said, I'd hunt anything in AK with a 30/06 and never feel under-gunned or slighted in the least. Whatever the '06 will kill out to 250 yards the .308 will do just as well. As AlaskaTrueAdventure (Dennis) mentioned I'd prefer a bigger hole for the larger bears, but I'd hunt them with the .308 if that's all I had without fretting over the cartridge's ability. For black bear, deer, 'bou and such I'd use almost any 165 grain bullet with confidence. As game got bigger, say moose and brown bear, I'd almost certainly go to a 165 TSX or similar monometal bullet that will almost guarantee excessive penetration. A .30 caliber hole through an animal's vitals is extremely effective regardless the headstamp of the cartridge that fired said bullet.
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    Lots of good advice here. The .308 can take it all but coastal brownies. For interior brownies I'd go 180 Partitions or 168 TSX's.
    Premium bullets help but shot placement trumps all else. A Kimber Montana in .308 would make a dynamite backpack/mountain rifle.

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    The venerable .308 is a superb all around caliber. The only place i would go bigger is the big bear. Also one must keep in mind ANY caliber has limitations. It would be just fine from moose on down and if you were up close and personal with a big bear and slipped one in behind the shoulder you would have a dead bear. Could you shoot through a moose the long way with it like a .375 could? no but then it was never meant to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by knikglacier View Post
    A Kimber Montana in .308 would make a dynamite backpack/mountain rifle.
    Indeed the are

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    I'd "hunt" anything in Alaska with my .308, however on the peninsula where I might become the hunted I don't carry it because I wan't the stopping power of the .375H&H for the bears, particularly when i'm alone or with the old lady.

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    My brother and I started putting our daughters in for the Delta Bison Hunts this year. We have been talking about what caliber to have them use, and were talking about a youth .308 with 200 grain bullets. How does the .308 perform with the heavier bullets, and would you consider it for a bison?

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    As every one knows the .308 Win. is normally 100 to 150 fps under the 30-06 when it comes to pushing bullets of equal weight. We are fortunate enough to live in the era of super bullets. A 165 or 180 grain Barnes X out of a .308 will penetrate like a 200 grain Nosler Partition out of a 30-06. Also, for the most part due to today's bullets and powders the .308 probably has more killing potential today then the 30-06 did 60 years ago when it was making a reputation for it self in Alaska with Brown Bear Guides. I think there is probably a minimum bullet weight for bison in order to meet some minimum required energy figure. I quit looking at energy figures a long time ago. Bullet construction and velocity is enough for me to keep track of.

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    Ive always found .308 plenty good when the shot is placed in the right spot

    Works just as good as when they are necked down to .243 as welll ~~LOL!!!!~~
    Head shots on Ptarmigan to Brown Bears .308 will Cover your Donkey.
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

    "Dam it all", The Beaver told me.....

  17. #17

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    .338, yes, there is a 200 grain weight minimum on bullets for the bison hunt which is why I asked. We weren't too impressed with the 200 grain '06 bullets my dad used to get his bison last year. It sounds as if we'd have similar issues with consistency out of the .308, if not worse then.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerod View Post
    My brother and I started putting our daughters in for the Delta Bison Hunts this year. We have been talking about what caliber to have them use, and were talking about a youth .308 with 200 grain bullets. How does the .308 perform with the heavier bullets, and would you consider it for a bison?
    The .308 will do anything a 30-06 will do with the 150 to 180 grain bullets, but to my understanding the .308 won't handle the heavier 200-220 grains bullets. Glad this topic was started because I've used a .308 for years on white-tails and wasn't sure if it was enough gun for moose.

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    Here's another agreement with the above thoughts. I use the 165 grain bullet and would hunt up to coastal grizzly with it. It would not be numbeer one for interior bears but I wouldn't buy somethng else just for that but I'd probably use the 180 grain premium bullets.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerod View Post
    My brother and I started putting our daughters in for the Delta Bison Hunts this year. We have been talking about what caliber to have them use, and were talking about a youth .308 with 200 grain bullets. How does the .308 perform with the heavier bullets, and would you consider it for a bison?
    I've used 200gr. bullets in my .308- I had a 1:12 twist barrel and it didn't stabilize too well. .308s used to come with 1:10 barrels and did better with heavier bullets. With 200gr you run out of steam pretty quick though.

    I shot 165gr Light Magnum (2850fps!) ammo out of mine and I'd rate it the equal of a standard velocity '06 any day. Not legal for bison but dynamite on anything else.

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