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View Full Version : lowest recoil rifle for elk - followup


btmj
February 20, 2012, 11:33 PM
I opened a thread about a month ago...

lowest recoil rifle for elk

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A conversation with some friends turned into a vigorous discussion, with strong opinions on every side. I would like to get the opinions of the experts on this forum.

What is the lowest-recoiling rifle/cartridge combination that would be suitable for elk hunting?

Assumptions:

The hunter is an experienced deer hunter, and she has taken many white-tails over the years, but has never been elk hunting.

No shots beyond 200 yards.

She can afford a new rifle but would prefer to keep the cost of rifle/scope below $2000.

She currently uses a 6mm Remington 700 on deer because of the light recoil. She has an old shoulder injury which makes her recoil sensitive. She can tolerate the higher recoil of a 9 lb 30-06 for 3 to 5 rounds, but that’s about it. She also had to give up shooting skeet and sporting clays. She can shoot a bolt 223 all day.



There was a lot of really good discussion, and my friends read the thread and appreciated all the comments. Due to privacy concerns, they don't want to actively participate in online discussion forums, but they found all the advice quite helpful.

She has decided to accompany her husband on the elk hunt this autumn in Canada, probably Ontario. She is starting to train now to get into shape (that won't take long, she is in awesome shape for 51 years).

She shot several friends rifles, including a DPMS AR-10 type in 308, and also a 10 lb Savage bolt with a bull barrel in 308. This convinced her she could shoot a 308 without pain in her right shoulder.

I also explained that a 180 grain 308, from 0 to 200 yards, has the same velocity and energy as a 180 grain 300 win mag from 150 to 350 yards.

Although she really wanted a Sako, she fell in love with a 2 year old Winchester 70 featherweight, with a supergrade walnut stock. Her husband is having it shipped to California to have the length of pull shortened, and some kind of high tech recoil pad/ recoil absorber put on.

So it is a good ending. I doubt she would have seriously considered this elk hunt without the very positive feedback from this forum. She needed the confidence that she did not need a 338 or 300 mag to take elk. I wish I could go with them !

HiBC
February 21, 2012, 03:55 AM
My brother's boss asked him for help setting up a 14 yr old skinny kid for ellk.IIRC,ther may have been something about the kid already being eyebrow cut by a cheap scope.

He spent some time behind an AR-10 T healing up,gaining confidence.

FWIW,the kid made a one shot 300 yd clean kill on his elk.

The load was a 165 gr Accubond in a .308,Varget Powder.

Hard to beat an M-70 fwt.Best of luck!!

g20gunny
February 21, 2012, 08:29 PM
I see no problem with 308 or 338 federal at that range, as long as she knows her rifle. Ask any old fart and he will tell you stories of shooting elk with a hand me down 30-30. Also I notice as much difference in rifles as calibers... My 7mm rem mag Weatherby kicks less than my buddies junk 308 rem 770.

Deja vu
February 24, 2012, 08:44 AM
I have taken many elk in my days. Some with a 30-30... I think the 308 will be fine, just make the shooter can do there part.

Pilot
February 24, 2012, 08:46 AM
I like the 7MM-08, and 6.5x55 Swedish Mauser for lower recoiling rifles for larger North American game. A .308 should also be just fine.

skydiver3346
February 24, 2012, 09:49 PM
Try the 6.5x55 Swede round or maybe the .260 Remington. Very accurate cartridge and low recoil with great ballistic co-efficients, etc. :)

warbirdlover
February 24, 2012, 11:55 PM
I think the .308 is already a done deal skydiver.

lefteye
February 25, 2012, 11:22 PM
Good choice - especially in a beautiful rifle she loves. ENJOY!

Mobuck
February 26, 2012, 10:08 PM
Personally, I would recommend a premium 165 grain rather than a common/generic 180.

Jeremiah/Az
February 27, 2012, 11:39 PM
A .270, .308, or 30.06 will do just fine out to 200-250 yards.

4winds
February 29, 2012, 09:34 AM
After reading this:

She shot several friends rifles, including a DPMS AR-10 type in 308, and also a 10 lb Savage bolt with a bull barrel in 308. This convinced her she could shoot a 308 without pain in her right shoulder.

then this:

Although she really wanted a Sako, she fell in love with a 2 year old Winchester 70 featherweight, with a supergrade walnut stock. Her husband is having it shipped to California to have the length of pull shortened, and some kind of high tech recoil pad/ recoil absorber put on.

There will be A LOT of difference with felt recoil in a heavy semiauto and the 10lb bolt gun than the model 70 featherweight in a 308. If her husband is shortening the lop that is even more weight reduced. All this will add up to a bigger jump in felt recoil - it's just physics. Sounds like she is dedicated to making it a successful hunt with exercise and what have you, but I would definitely put a lot of time behind the trigger of the M70 to establish familiarity and confidence. If the uber-techno recoil pad will add weight to the gun it will help diminish some of the recoil, maybe try the mercury reducers. Anyway, make sure she practices OFF THE BENCH to mimic hunting situations (prone, kneeling, off a bag and standing) and she will be set! All of those positions will help with felt recoil far better than the punishment she'll take from the bench, except for prone.

Best of luck to her, hope she kills a biggn!