Ideally a 7mm would be nice. The thing is its the discontinued Vanguard series that has been replaced by the new Vanguard S2. All they have left in the original Vanguard series is 270, 30-06, 308, 300 Wby, 243 and 223.
I quickly narrowed it down to the 270, 30-06 and 300 Weatherby. Its hard to pass up a good rifle for $350. That is what really peaked my interest.
I've gotten extremely comfortable with my 30-30 and my handloads. I can get Hornady's 160 gr FTX loads to consistently group under 2" at 100 yards. I really would like to step up in power a bit.
I was thinking 270 or 300 Weatherby for the longer ranges and using the 30-30 as more of a deep timber gun. A 2.5" high zero at 100 yards with either of them still puts it close to dead on at 300 yards. However its hard to beat a good 30-06 given the huge variety of bullet weights. I'm awfully tempted by the 300 Weatherby but am concerned about the recoil as well as the odd style of case for reloading. If I got it I would load it down a bit but still equivalent to a very hot 30-06 load to start off with but would have the capability to move up in power as I get more comfortable with it. I think it would be all the gun I would ever need for North America.
Thanks for the responses folks.