AGreed with the above. I think the 30-06 is probably the finest most verstile caliber of all time, but one needs to subtantiate that from his perspective.
The 6.5 will do a good job, though I think the 30-06 is better overall for state reasons (and if he is getting a Sako then that pushes it over my edge!)
Rustle in the Bushes: I Shoot a SAKO 30-06 and I shoot 110gr V-MAX`S up to the REM 220gr COR-LOCK`S. I am a died in the wool 30-06 fan. I have tried the SABOT 55gr bullets from REM and even tried reloading them my self don`t seem to work for me yet but haven`t given up all tograther, The 110 gr and 125 gr works great fro me on Coyotes and Varmints. and the 130gr thru 220gr works for everything else I have ever hunted, Lhave never hunted any large bears or hunted where they were. As far as recoil I am getting more recoil senteativy all the time. To me 110gr`s recoil less than the 220gr bullets, but I am real leary of using squib loads and have never done it or even shot any of them. I use a good recoil pad and I am going to be getting a PAST RECOIL pad that you wear. You are going to love your SAKO in 30-06 other than a good 22 LR rifle, you won`t really need another rifle. You will have most everything you will hunt covered. I wish I had hunted your county when I was young, I am to old now and I truely regret not seeing your Moutains. GOOD LUCK TO YOU: ken
What Sako do you have? Mine is early enough it did not have import stamp on it. I think they had to do that in 1968 (mines about a 64). Don't hunt anymore but fits in with the target shooting. Just a great feeling handling gun.
note: The 1922 era 1903 I have belonged to my Step Dads father. He took 4 or 5 grizzlies with it. Not small ones, huge. I have seen the pictures. I would not wanted to deal with any of them with anything short of a 50 caliber. Scary huge.
No idea what round he used but they were all one shot kills from what my Step Dad can remember. Not your first choice these days, but its what they had and used effectively in those days (he had a wife and kid and could not afford to have a grizzly prowling around when he was up on the mining claim).
Now considered the minimum is one of the 375 magnums and 458s are not uncommon.