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Moose and caribou with the same load?

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  • Moose and caribou with the same load?

    I wrestle with the problem of seeing moose when I am hunting caribou and seeing moose when I am hunting bou! The question of bullet choice is a constant question all of the time! I do not want to shoot a caribou with a large grained bullet as I find that there is way to much damage and the bullet drops like a rock at 250+ yards.

    3 years ago I was beginning a hike up a mountain to a large bench that had a group of 200+ caribou in the Noatak NP around the Aggie River area. I was packing my .270 with 130 grain bullets as I find them to really do the job on caribou and can reach out over 400 yards if needed and up 400yds+ is normal. I always carry a pocket full of 160 grain just incase I bump into a nice moose along the way.

    About 20 mins. Into this hike I spotted a very nice bull moose taking a nap in some timber about 350 yards out and made the decision to for go the nice caribou we had spotted earlier and kill the day with this moose. I was shooting down hill at about a 20 degree angle and squeezed off a nice shot just behind the shoulder of this guy. The Big Boy lurched and moved about 20 yards into the timber and lay down. Cool! Time for a cup of coffee and a sandwich and give him time to bleed out right!!

    I moved in on him after a 15 min rest and this guy bolted straight towards the Noatak River at Jessie Owens speed. Crap! I caught up to him at the river and he was about 20 yards from shore doing the back stroke like Michael Phelps but a boat passing by scared him back towards shore. The last thing I wanted is for this guy to get back into the willow so 2 shots in the neck at 40 yards and mongo was face down in knee-deep water.

    Well the story was about bullet choice right? Me being the excited hunter forgot to drop the 130 grain and replace them with the 160’s and as we are pealing the hide back I find shot #1. Well placed and it entered just where I wanted it to but it hit a rib, traveled up towards the spine, lodged in the subcutaneous fat and did almost no damage. Hell this bull would of lived for sure if this was the only shot!

    I know that I would have done the needed damage with a 160 grain bullet but the 130 just did not carry enough energy to get past the ribs! I use this example every year in my Physical Science class when we are learning about Inertia! The model 700 is a great gun and if the bullet had slid through the ribs rather than hitting one square on I would have been fine.

    The moral of this story is chose the correct bullet for the job at hand and the rest is up to you. Most importantly is shot placement. A well-placed shot will get the job done for sure.

    Walt
    Northwest Alaska Back Country Rentals
    Kotz, Ak
    www.northwestalaska.com

  • #2
    I have seen many Moose and Caribou fall to the same load out of a 270.... the 130gr Partition. Dont know what bullet you were using but anything weighing 130 grains or more out of a 270 has plenty of power for dropping a Moose.

    It may have been shot placement or it was that once in a lifetime happening when it doesnt work, but I guarantee that out of 100 times,99 of them would have resulted in a dead moose after the first shot.

    The great thing is though that you noticed it was just wounded and pursued the animal and ended it swiftly and humanely without anything or anybody getting hurt. Good on you for that.
    If you can read this, thank a Teacher.
    If you can read this in English, thank a Soldier.

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    • #3
      I believe from the facts presented we have a normal problem seen often in the hunting world. A guy thinkin he doesn't need to sneak closer to the animal to get a better shot.
      Now perhaps Walt didn't include all the details, but from your story, Walt, I'm assuming you shot from 350 yds.
      Would that be correct?
      If your taking regular 400 yds shots at bou, you might be a good marksmen, but your a lousy hunter!
      I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
      I have less friends now!!

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      • #4
        Marten, Marten, Marten

        Originally posted by martentrapper View Post
        I believe from the facts presented we have a normal problem seen often in the hunting world. A guy thinkin he doesn't need to sneak closer to the animal to get a better shot.
        Now perhaps Walt didn't include all the details, but from your story, Walt, I'm assuming you shot from 350 yds.
        Would that be correct?
        If your taking regular 400 yds shots at bou, you might be a good marksmen, but your a lousy hunter!

        Thats what I like about MT... Well I don't really like MT much now that I think about it but that said. The Moose was down hill in heavy cover and getting closer would mean not having a clear shot. So yes I might have stalked closer but not on this animal. Thanks for the comments. As always I will give them the same amount of consideration as I give my toilet paperů flushed away now!

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        • #5
          Gee, Walt...... How many times you read these threads? don't you know you need at least a 338 for bou and at the bare min... 375 for moose...:rolleyes:


          dang and we went a whole 2 weeks with out a "is this gun big enough" discusssion......:cool:
          "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

          meet on face book here

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Vince View Post
            Gee, Walt...... How many times you read these threads? don't you know you need at least a 338 for bou and at the bare min... 375 for moose...:rolleyes:
            With at least a 250gr bullet. Don't forget that part, Vince.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Vince View Post
              Gee, Walt...... How many times you read these threads? don't you know you need at least a 338 for bou and at the bare min... 375 for moose...:rolleyes:


              dang and we went a whole 2 weeks with out a "is this gun big enough" discusssion......:cool:
              Crap! Now i know the problem! My gun is not as big as my.....****

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              • #8
                Originally posted by martentrapper View Post
                I believe from the facts presented we have a normal problem seen often in the hunting world. A guy thinkin he doesn't need to sneak closer to the animal to get a better shot.
                Now perhaps Walt didn't include all the details, but from your story, Walt, I'm assuming you shot from 350 yds.
                Would that be correct?
                If your taking regular 400 yds shots at bou, you might be a good marksmen, but your a lousy hunter!

                I forgot.. Up here in the wilds of NW Alaska we lack the roads that you great hunters have in Nome and are forced to get out of the cab of our truck to shoot our meat! Do you guys roll down the window?

                What a guy!

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                • #9
                  That's unlike you Walt. MT was ok until his last comment. sometimes its just about impossible to get closer to an animal. If you had gone down to stalk closer, you may not have even been able to see the moose. Hey MT, you were right that he didn't tell all buyt calling him a lousy hunter may have been premature. Both of you are better that this.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bill S. View Post
                    That's unlike you Walt. MT was ok until his last comment. sometimes its just about impossible to get closer to an animal. If you had gone down to stalk closer, you may not have even been able to see the moose. Hey MT, you were right that he didn't tell all buyt calling him a lousy hunter may have been premature. Both of you are better that this.

                    Ok now I feel bad! Sorry MT, but you still hunt from the Raods!

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                    • #11
                      I don't believe for a minute that your 160's placed BEHIND the shoulder on a caribou would do considerable damage. An easy solution would be to learn the trajectory of your 160s and go hunting with confidence. Your 160s might have a better trajectory at the long range caribou shots you are talking about anyway. Good luck, glad you recovered your moose.

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                      • #12
                        I agree with jpost. My first thought on this was that if I was in the field with the possiblity of taking different animals, I'd load up for the largest one. I don't think the amount of meat damage really is a valid concern. I've had a wide variety of meat damage from the same load, depending on where the bullet hit.

                        Main thing is that you followed through and got the moose.

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                        • #13
                          30.06 for both

                          180 grain bullet. In the shoulder for the moose; in the neck for the caribou.

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                          • #14
                            125 grain montec G5's with gold tip 7595 would do the trick for both...wait a second, this isnt the archery section, oppsss.

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                            • #15
                              Personally, I only have 1 load for each of my hunting rifles. I don't want to bother with making sure I have the right loads when I grab my gun. If I think I'll need another bullet, I take a different gun. I just like to keep it simple, so once I have a good hunting load for a gun, thats all I load for it unless I decide to work up a new load altogether.
                              I suppose if I only had 1 gun, I might think about having multiple loads, but my preference would be to have a gun that was capable of killing whatever I wanted to hunt and one load that would work for everything. Of course, it would be a compromise, but thats life.
                              We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties.
                              James Madison

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