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  • good Bear guns

    I was wondering what a good bear rifle would be, iv been considering a .375 h&h mag, but iv gotten nagged about buying a 45-70,

    what i want the rifle for is mainly protection while hikeing or backpacking and some grizzly hunting.

    and im set on a rifle i understand a 500 mag pistol would be great backpacking protection just im a rifle man myself i do own one and take it with me just would like a good anti bear rifle if i happend to stumble into one. as well as potent enough to down a large grizzley

    (been eyeballing the remington 700 XCR .375 h&h magnum)

  • #2
    Originally posted by Woods View Post
    I was wondering what a good bear rifle would be, iv been considering a .375 h&h mag, but iv gotten nagged about buying a 45-70,

    what i want the rifle for is mainly protection while hikeing or backpacking and some grizzly hunting.

    and im set on a rifle i understand a 500 mag pistol would be great backpacking protection just im a rifle man myself i do own one and take it with me just would like a good anti bear rifle if i happend to stumble into one. as well as potent enough to down a large grizzley

    (been eyeballing the remington 700 XCR .375 h&h magnum)

    The .375 is a great caliber, got 2 of them. But for just backpacking I find them a bit heavy to lug around. Maybe it's just old age but they seem heavier than they were 20 years ago.

    A short barreled 45-70 certainly is up to the job and more compact than a .375.

    I've seen a lot of bears over the years and never had a problem. Lately when not hunting I've been taking a Winchester trapper .44 Mag along with me and/or a 629 mountain gun. Many will probably laugh at this but when I consider the fact that the odds of a bear attack are pretty low, the ability to comfortably carry something is a whole lot better choice than the .375 in the trunk of the car. It's a choice and you take your chances. Your mileage may vary.

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    • #3
      My hunting rifle is a 700 xcr 375, love it. My bear protection/camp gun is 45/70 lever gun. If i only needed one for bear protecton, the 45/70 is the one, light, short and fast w/ ghost rings

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      • #4
        .45-70 Choice

        The .45-70 is a great choice. Lots of stopping power. Remember, shot placement is everything.

        Personally I play by the two gun rule. One gun equals none. Two guns equals one. If you ever need the second one, you need it really, really bad!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Jack49 View Post
          Lately when not hunting I've been taking a Winchester trapper .44 Mag along with me and/or a 629 mountain gun. Many will probably laugh at this but when I consider the fact that the odds of a bear attack are pretty low, the ability to comfortably carry something is a whole lot better choice than the .375 in the trunk of the car. It's a choice and you take your chances. Your mileage may vary.
          I agree.

          When not hunting, I take my Win 94, 30-30, and/or S&W 44 Mag. or 357 Mag. That's most of the time, but I've taken other rifles occassionally.

          Smitty of the North
          Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
          Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
          You can't out-give God.

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          • #6
            booth will do the job at hand so take the one you like the best.Its not hard to get the weight down on a 375 and make it shorter.
            Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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            • #7
              When purchasing a bear protection rifle you must make your considerations from a tactical aspect. The rifle will be carried in your hand always ready to protect. The rifle must protect from an unexpected bear attack on you or your family both day or night. Since it will be carried while hiking and not hunting then carrying around an 8lb.+ 375 h&h with a 24-26 in. long barrel could hardly be considered practical. I own heavy barelled varmint rifles that weigh that much. The bolt throw on a 375 is so long that you must take your face off the stock to cycle the bolt. A protection rifle should allow you to cycle the second or third round without ever loosing your sight alignment or taking your face off the stock. Two rifle availible today come to mind. The marlin guide gun in either 450 or 45/70, or a Browing Lever Rifle in 358 Winchester. The marlin has an eighteen inch tube and weighs 7 pounds, and The BLR weighs 6.5 pounds with a 20 in. tube. Both can be loaded with 250-300+ grain bullets. That is a lot of power in a compact package that can rapidly fire shots off reliably like no other. Nothing is more American than a good lever carbine. Bolt a small piece of picatinny rail to the bottom of the forearm and and attach a weapons light, load up some heavy for caliber hitters and hit the trail with confidence.
              www.freightercanoes.com www.copperheadalaska.com
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              matnaggewinu

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              • #8
                Ty guys for the fast responses

                well for the price i was going to pay for remington 700 xcr i can easily get Marlins new 1895 SBL 45-70 lever action rifle looks like ill be luggin that beast around i do pref the shorter barrel of the marlin over the remington. plus the marlin holds 6 rounds wich adds a lil confidence out in the middle of no were

                nvr shot a lever action rifle before so should be fun to take to the range and get a few rounds off before taking it out on the trails.

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                • #9
                  I just picked up a Puma 454 Casull levergun, 20 inch barrel 10 round magazine that will do the trick. They also make/made it in a 480. It weighs 6 lbs. Just another option to consider.
                  A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

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                  • #10
                    For bear hunting I carry a .338 or a .300. But these aren't really that handy for protection as they both are over 7 pounds (unloaded), and have longer barrels and just a longer gun in general. Which both the weight and length of these guns is just not conducive to making you want to keep it near by for protection.

                    For knocking around on wheelers in the summer or rafting and limited backpacking now I'll be packing my Marlin 1895 guide gun. Just under 7 lbs loaded and only 16" barrel makes it a pretty sweet lil package. Plus if I want to stalk and harvest a bear while I am out I can still feel pretty confident that I'll get the job done if I get inside 100 yrds which is a nice option to have.

                    However, when backpacking 90% of the time I'll be packing my .44 revovler and my wife will have the bear spray. Combined weight of around 3 pounds and more options. I'm just niave but I probably spend far too little time thinking and worrying about bears than most it seems and just like to get out and have fun and use my brain to keep me out of trouble. (Yeah thats a stretch I know ) But its always good to be prepared when possible.

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                    • #11
                      either one....

                      The Marlin 45-70 and some heavy jacketed 405 grain bullets are a good combo for bear. So is a reliable bolt gun in the great Three Seven Five Holland & Holland. That .375 caliber has been safely relied on to stop big critters by dozens of Alaskan and African professional hunters. And hundreds of their clients and hunters. If you can carry and shoot them either is a good choice.

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                      • #12
                        Snyd, I would be curious how you like it after you have done some shooting/reloading. One here in the forum brought up there defense on Puma's ...forgot who but they got my attention. How is QC?

                        appreciate it.

                        did not mean to jump the topic off, excuse me. Yes, the .45-70 is handy, had one myself......you will appreciate it very soon. It works rather well in downing a grizz and moose too, very minimum meat damage for moose.

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                        • #13
                          I carry a Winchester 1300 Defender 12 gauge pump....first round 00 Buck and the rest Sabot slugs.
                          America...land of the free, home of the brave and infiltrated by the blind & naive.

                          Psalms 109:8

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by TruBluTex View Post
                            I carry a Winchester 1300 Defender 12 gauge pump....first round 00 Buck and the rest Sabot slugs.
                            I've used 12 brenekee's but would never consider 00 buck for browns unless he was breathing on me. On heavy boned critters it just doesn't work well.

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                            • #15
                              i dont mean to get off my own topic, but can the 1895 slb Marlin im looking at (45-70) handle 400 grain loads? i read a few reviews on it, said they were shooting 300 grain - 500 grain with it, dont wanna blow up my gun. wanna get some other opinions from more knowledgeable folks before i make a def decision. what kinda load is too much? for a lever action 45-70

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