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M700
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 11:24am | IP Logged Quote M700

This year I deliberately set about hunting with one rifle (except for one day of bear hunting, using my predator call and carrying the .30-30 Glenfield). Knowing that I was going to be hunting primarily open country for bear, antelope, mule deer and elk, I selected my .30-06 Rem 700 CDL. Normally I hunt antelope & mule deer with my flat-shooting .25-06, but with bear and elk on the menu, I felt more comfortable using a bigger bullet.

The rifle has been pillar bedded, the 24" barrel free floated, and the trigger tuned to a crisp 3 pounds. It's topped by an older 2-7x Redfield I got from STCM(SW).

My standard load for many years with the .30-06 is a 165 over a near-max charge of H4350. This time I used Nosler brass, Federal 210 primers, and selected a favorite bullet, the 165 gr Nosler Ballistic Tip.

The Ballistic Tip has always been accurate, and for quite a few years now it's proven to be much tougher than the original version produced in the 1980's. I had no worries about it being too fragile for big game.

Sighted the rifle in just a tad high at 200 yards, contemplating open-country shooting. I was going to sight it in right at 200 yards, but when I fired the group, it landed just about an inch high at 200... nicely centered. I looked at it, and feeling both lazy and satisfied, called it good enough.

Switched to doing most of my practice at my 300 yard steel gong. All field positions; prone, sitting, kneeling (always a difficult position for me) and standing. Actually did a lot of my practice from standing, at 300. Builds character, missing that gong...

I'd shoot. Listen for the clang. NOTHING. Then I'd start singing "The sounds of silence." My buddies at the range laughed the first few times, then just glared at me later on... I stopped singing around them.

As time wore on, and I went through more .30-06 ammo, I started hearing that clang more often. Always from prone, usually from sitting. Seldom practiced kneeling 'cause it HURTS my legs, and then got pretty consistent from standing. Yee Haw! Used to have a great standing position that worked real well. Seem to be edging closer to that again.

The load worked well, hovering just under MOA for three shots at 100, 200 and 300 yards. Good enough for me.

September - bear - eastern Washington spot and stalk hunt. One shot, from sitting, no support, 325 yards. The bear was walking away, facing uphill, and quartering away. I put it in his rib cage. The bullet went through the vitals, destroying things and then the lead core exited through the off-side shoulder. The bullet jacket was recovered, hung up in the skin.



Next the .30-06 (with the .25-06 as backup) accompanied me to Wyoming for antelope & mule deer hunting. That worked out real well!

Antelope was walking, broadside to me, at 245 yards. I went prone, and shot him in the shoulder. Broke the shoulder, destroyed the heart/lungs, and exited. He dropped right there.



My opportunity at mule deer was this buck, looking right at me, offering nothing but a frontal shot to his chest or neck at 140 yards. From prone, I put the bullet into his chest, dropping him instantly. The bullet was recovered in his ham, hung up in the skin, after traversing the length of his body.





The .30-06 took a break then, through November. Then I started hunting elk with a late season cow tag I held for a local area here in Washington. Was hunting only about 20 minutes from home! Finally, after several days of hunting, I was able to get a shot at 338 yards. Held right on the line of her back, and put the bullet into her shoulder. It punched through, destroyed the lungs, and I haven't recovered the bullet. Unsure if it's still buried in the off-side shoulder or if I lost it while field dressing the elk.



All four animals dropped quickly. The antelope and the mule deer instantly. The bear ran less than 10 yards. The elk stumbled downhill about 20 yards.

There was an exit wound on the bear, and on the antelope. Not on the mule deer or the elk. If an exit wound is important to you, I'd recommend a tougher bullet. For killing though, I think the Ballistic Tip worked just great. I think the load did a fine job.

If I'd been going for big bull elk, I'd have likely selected a 180 or 200 gr Nosler Partition. But for my purposes, this load did GREAT!

Could this be done with any number of different cartridges or bullets? Of course! But it sure was nice, doing most of my rifle practice this year with the .30-06, then using it with such success during the season.

Regards, Guy
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rednekpaul
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 12:58pm | IP Logged Quote rednekpaul

Congrats on a successful hunting season.
Back in my 06 days I used 130, 150, 165 and 180 grainers in my 06. Did a lot of experimenting back then. I settled on the Hornady 165 BTSP. If your a one gun one load hunter my experience is the 165 is the best compromise in the 06.
What was your powder charge and velocity if you chrono it?
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rednekpaul
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 1:14pm | IP Logged Quote rednekpaul

And of course there`s the crowd that says if you don`t have 100 percent weight retention the bullet failed. Looks like that "cheap" bullet did its job very well on the 4 animals.
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Old Ranger
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 1:59pm | IP Logged Quote Old Ranger

My #1 '06 elk bullet was the Nosler 180gr Partition. Carried well for moderate distance and always knocked em down and out. Those partitions are one of the best bullet design in ages. And never inconsistent in any manner of use. I really like Nosler bullets!

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M700
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 2:56pm | IP Logged Quote M700

Paul, I was at about 2900 fps with that 165 Nosler Ballistic Tip, via a stout (book) charge of H4350.

Ranger - ya - Love the 180 Partition! Have used it in the past with excellent results.

Regards, Guy

Edited by M700 on December 31 2016 at 2:56pm
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Paul B.
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 3:09pm | IP Logged Quote Paul B.

I usually use my .35 Whelen for elk hunting but back in 2014 the .35
came as back up and I used a custom FN Mauser That a friend put
together for me way back in 1973. I never could get that gun to shot. In
the original stock no telling where the next shot would go and a 6 to 7
inch group was called a good day. One day I drove up to Deer Park AZ
(suburb pf Phoenix) and go a stock from McMillan at a very good price.
Seems a guy changed his mind and lost his deposit. I glared the rifle
into the new stock but damned if groups were not any better. Barely
supposedly has a twist of 1 in 12" which should still stabilize 180 gr.
bullets but not this one.
Someone suggested I try a 150 or 165 gr. bullet so I worked up to
about 2850 FPS with the 165 gr. Nosler Accubond. Dang me but all the
loads were sub MOA from the get go.
So, I took it elk hunting. Wasn't all that sure about a 165 gr. bullet,
premium or not premium but when the time came it punched into the
back of the rib cage and stopped in the left lung. The elk did a short,
maybe 30 foot dash and collapsed. She did require a finisher but
wasn't going anywhere. We looked for the bullet but as far as we could
tell it did not exit. I'm thinking it was buried in the mass of goo that was
the left lung.
I did get a great deal on a bunch on Nosler 165 gr. Partions a while
back so I'll see how they work in that rifle.
Paul B.
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STCM(SW)
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Posted: December 31 2016 at 3:52pm | IP Logged Quote STCM(SW)

I worked up a load using 168 gr Nosler BT, green tip for my Remington 700 LSS in 300 Ultra Magnum with 57 gr of IMR
4350, a top load for a 30-06 but didn't take it and used the grandson's WBY SS 30-06 with Federal Fusion 180 gr.

Since I'm getting such close shots, next year I'm hunting with my 7.5" S&W 500 Magnum topped with a Leupold V scope.

No way I can make shots like Guy does!



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LAH
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Posted: January 02 2017 at 11:14am | IP Logged Quote LAH

Ok Guy, great story. Now what did you use for pillars?
What did you do with the bear? And tell me about the tri-
pods?

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M700
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Posted: January 02 2017 at 12:42pm | IP Logged Quote M700

LAH - I had a good local gunsmith do the work on my 700 CDL's. Took him the .30-06 & .25-06 at the same time, with the goal of making them very much alike. It worked. I think the pillars are aluminum. Dunno. They work.



The bear became breakfast sausage!   



His hide is still rolled up in my freezer. Not sure I want another bear rug around the house. We've got plenty.

I used a Harris bipod on my rifle this year. Normally I don't, because they add a pound or so of weight to an otherwise nicely balanced rifle. But for some reason in late summer/early fall, I was having trouble being stable and steady in my shooting positions. I simply wasn't shooting as well as normal, and felt like with all the hunting coming up, I needed a bit of an edge. Put the bipod on my rifle shortly before the Wyoming hunt, and it worked real well.

Interestingly, my two longest shots this season, 325 yards from sitting for the bear, and 338 yards from prone, for the elk... I didn't have a bipod on the rifle! Ha!

There are cheaper bipods on the market, but when I use a bipod, I like to use Harris. Made in America. Sturdy. I like the "swivel" model - which makes it easier to use on uneven terrain. Also makes it nice if the shooter tends to "torque" the rifle a bit with his shooting hand.

There ya go.

Guy
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LAH
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Posted: January 02 2017 at 5:05pm | IP Logged Quote LAH

Your bedding is nicely neat. The bear looks delicious. I need a Harris bipod. And the stuff on those eggs scares me.

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USA Joe
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Posted: January 03 2017 at 8:39am | IP Logged Quote USA Joe

Hi all:) Fine ending & great pictures & many memory's !
Thanks for sharing friend      Joe

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M700
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Posted: January 03 2017 at 4:10pm | IP Logged Quote M700

Thanks all. This was a real good hunting season for me.

Real good. The .30-06 did well.

Guy
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Paul B.
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Posted: January 04 2017 at 1:51pm | IP Logged Quote Paul B.

"The 30-06 is never a mistake." Col. T. Whelen
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twillis
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Posted: January 10 2017 at 1:32pm | IP Logged Quote twillis

Guy, your load is very much what I use except my bullet currently is Berger's 168 gr VLD hunting bullet. I've used other 165 or 168 in the past. Pretty much a max load of H4350 (love that powder in the 30.06). My Encore has a 28" barrel and I am getting very close to 300 win mag velocity with it. Best shot was a whitetail at 425 off of a horizontal tree trunk for a one shot kill. I have only shot one animal twice with that combo and didn't need to do that. It was about 325 yards away and when I shot the animal never moved so I shot again and it fell over. When I got to it there were 2 holes about 2" apart right behind the shoulder. The deer didn't know it was dead.

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M700
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Posted: January 10 2017 at 4:56pm | IP Logged Quote M700

Terry - I've used the Bergers for hunting, but only the 115 grain VLD from my .25-06, and it was terrific!

Ya, I think the .30-06 & 165 at 2800 - 2900+ fps is a really great combination for most big game hunting avail to us here in North America.

I'd likely step up to the 180's or heavier if I was primarily going for elk & other large game.

Guy
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Posted: January 11 2017 at 10:56am | IP Logged Quote twillis

I went back to my data and I am using 59 grs. of H4350 in Rem cases with CCI 200 primers. Velocity for Sierra 165s, Hornaday 165 SSTs and the Berger 168s are all right at 3050 from my Encore. Velocity from a Rem 700 I had previously with the Hornadays was 2850.

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M700
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Posted: January 11 2017 at 5:18pm | IP Logged Quote M700

That 28" barrel is really helping!
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twillis
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Posted: January 12 2017 at 11:12am | IP Logged Quote twillis

It sure does. I've had 2 28" Encore barrels and they both shot at about the same velocity.

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Posted: January 15 2017 at 11:33pm | IP Logged Quote MontanaWolf

My 1st harvest with my 1st reloaded bullets was for a 300Win Mag topped with a 180gr Nosler Ballistic Tip. I recovered it in the far side rib. It was a downhill shot, only about 80 yds but threw a spaghetti bowl of trees and branches the whole way. Had to thread the needle to the vitals.
Hit broadside about 1/3 way down from the back, straight into the chest and somehow that bullet must have ricocheted around in that cavity because when I was field dressing it I thought it had bone cancer from a large lump on the rib which upon closer inspection, was the bullet.
It entered into the exit side of a rib, but from the front side of the bull and lodged in there completely hidden. Best mushroom I ever saw, LOL. Although a light jacketed bullet for a moose, it did what it suppose too. The moose never took a second step, it just flipped over on its back dead.

Edited by MontanaWolf on January 15 2017 at 11:35pm


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M700
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Posted: January 16 2017 at 11:20am | IP Logged Quote M700

Cool!

Someday... Someday I will hunt moose!

Guy
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