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Thread: .06 vs .280 short mag.

  1. #1
    Member Burke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Palmer, AK

    Default .06 vs .280 short mag.

    My dad is coming up to hunt caribou. I used to hunt everything in Montana with a .270 but now I hunt with a bow and have to claim ignorance regarding rifles and loads. He has two choices...30-06 and a .280 short mag.
    Which would you recomend...if either? What ammo loads would you use with either of them? Would you shoot a bear with either of them?
    I know that shot placement and practice make a big difference, so given that can anyone help?

  2. #2

    Default .280

    What exactly is a .280 short mag? Never heard of it and I have been shooting a .280 for over 20 years...... A .30-06 or .280 will work equally well IF you use good bullets. I shot nearly everything in Alaska with a .280, and nearly as much with a .30-06. I lean towards the .280, but this is strictly a personal preference.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  3. #3
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    Generally speaking a lot of Caribou shot opportunities can be as far as you comfortable shooting accuratly with a high probability of a single clean human kill. To some guys this means 150-200 yards, to other people who specialize in long distance shooting this could mean a lot farther distance.

    Most reasonable size adult bull Caribou will around 300-400 pounds on the hoof. About the size of a really big mule deer buck, or small bull elk. Being from Montana I hope this size comparison helps......

    I'm not familar with the .280 caliber in the short mag either...must be one of them new ones, the ol' 30-06 is a fine choice of caliber for a Caribou size animal. Shot placement is still #1 and doesn't go out of style and isn't altered by the latest fad/fashion caliber.

    One thing to keep in can walk up to ANY sporting good counter just about ANYWHERE in the world and ask for COMMON cartridges (.270, 30-06, .300, .338, 375) and they'll throw them accross the counter to you. In remote area's of Alaska, if you're shells don't show up with your luggage & gun because some TSA security person grabbed them, you might have trouble finding some of the new caliber shells, I know this from experince..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default choice of .280 or .30-'06

    Chose the .30-'06 and go with 180gr , 200gr , 220gr with good bullets.

    Federal P3006F loading is a 180gr nosler partition. Probably the cheapest of the good loads.

    200gr and 220gr nosler partitions are available too,as well as swift a-frames and scirroccos, barnes tsx, grand slams, etc.

    Just try this link for Conley Precision Cartridge's .30-'06 page.


  5. #5


    Byron Lamb has an excellent point. .30-06 ammo is everywhere. Try finding .280 ammo anywhere but Fairbanks or Anchorage. Even then you may have to spend time looking for it...........

    I am a devout .280 fan, and shoot Nosler Partition 160 grainers exclusively. I have taken many animals here in Alaska, black bear, moose, caribou, sheep, goats, wolves, grizzly. It is flat-shooting, accurate and deadly.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Eagle River,AK

    Default Me too Hawk!

    Born and raised here and have shot just about everything with everything and my absolutly favorite gun is my .280 ackley improved shooting 160 grain Barnes TS.My custom .416 shooting 300 grain Barnes TS is a very close second!!

  7. #7

    Default Go with the .06

    What Brian said. You can get .06 ammo nearly anywhere in Alaska, the .280 is a great cartridge but the number of small stores who carry the caliber in Alaska is much less than the .06.

    Good luck,


  8. #8
    Member MARV1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006


    .30/06 with Hornady Light Magnum loads in either 150 or 165 grain loads is what I'd use. I use the 150's on moose without hesitation. Shot placement is the key.
    The emphasis is on accuracy, not power!


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