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Old July 29, 2007, 06:56 AM   #1
justinbaker
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FIRST HUNT!! 140gr 300 wm too much for antelope?

so i have my first big game hunt next month for antelope and then elk in october,

been thinking about purchasing a 300 win mag for the elk hunt, but i am just wondering if a 140 gr out of the 300 would be over kill for the antelope hunt, this will be my first rifle (other than my 10/22)

thanks everyone
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Old July 29, 2007, 07:18 AM   #2
Rembrandt
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That's more than enough for Antelope, and a good round for Elk. Antelope are primarily hair and legs, most will produce about 40-50lbs of meat....about the size of a large dog. Bigger than I'd probably use, but you'll be fine with that round.

It's not like you're hunting one with a 50BMG or an African big game caliber, that would be overkill....
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Old July 29, 2007, 09:18 AM   #3
roy reali
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Re:justinbaker

Where did you find 140 grain bullets for a 300wm? Are they factory loads or reloads?
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Old July 29, 2007, 09:33 AM   #4
justinbaker
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well i guess i have not found any 140 grains yet, i dont even have the 300 yet, but i was reading about the browning 300 win mag BOSS settings and it gives the setting for a 140 gr, but now that you mention it the smallest i can find is 150 gr

http://www.browning.com/faq/detail.asp?ID=109
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Old July 29, 2007, 11:53 AM   #5
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The long answer is, it depends on the ranges that you're shooting. Since you're fairly new to this, the short answer is yes, it's too much. Not because it will kill them "too dead", but because the unnecessarily strong recoil could easily create a flinch in you when practicing with the rifle.
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Old July 29, 2007, 09:17 PM   #6
Art Eatman
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There's no such thing as too much; there is the argument that some cartridges are more than is needed.

If you want one gun for both antelope and elk, the .300 Win Mag is not a bad choice. The thing is, you need to shoot it enough to be "married up" with it.

As a first centerfire rifle for you, it might be "too much" recoil for you; I have no way of knowing. Might not be a problem.

When sighting in at the bench rest, add some extra padding between the butt of the rifle and your shoulder. Even lesser cartridges can kick more than one likes when at the bench.

After sighting in, practice with hasty rests like you'd find out in the boonies. Lean against a tree, or rest the rifle on your jacket laid across a rock or log. Try offhand. All that sort of thing. Generally, recoil is much less noticeable when your body can give with the shot. I don't guess I've ever even noticed recoil when I've shot at a deer; never noticed the noise of the muzzle blast.

.270, .308 and .30-'06 are good options. They're about 50 or so yards shy of the WinMag for performance...

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Old July 30, 2007, 10:04 PM   #7
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I would suggest you simplify life a bit and shoot your antelope with an elk load (more like 180 gr)
You will only have one trajectory to learn and you will have much more edible meat.
A 150 will likely produce a far more spectacular wound channel than a 180.
Get the hide off fast and get the meat cold quick.Same day.Antelope season is usually warm.It helps a lot if you don't dump the Bladder on the meat think surgery and tie-off.
If it doesn't get ruined,antelope is superb.Good luck
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Old July 30, 2007, 10:15 PM   #8
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One more thought.A 300 WM is a real big step from a 22 and hitting well is more important than hitting hard.
It is not easy to shoot a 300 well.It may be good to shoot some 7MM Express,or 30/06 ,etc before you spend your money. You must be able to maintain focus on the crosshairs with your eyes open while you get spanked.Enjoy,HiBC
PS,Get a scope with some eye relief and dont get too close to it.
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Old July 31, 2007, 10:01 AM   #9
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+1 on the 30-06. You could even go .270. Despite the TV shows to the contrary, elk are not armor plated. Get with in a legitimate range, and many calibers will do the job.

Biggest elk I have personally seen killed was with a .257 Roberts - broadside both lungs. It ran for a while, but ended up on the ground. Might have ran less with a .300 WM, but just hitting lung, I don't know.

Practice and shot placement will make your hunt successful, not how big the boom is (OK, within reason).

Heck, just use the excuse to get two rifles, maybe a 25-06 and a 7mm...
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Old July 31, 2007, 02:40 PM   #10
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+2 for HiBC

The same trajectory would be a handy option. IMO the .300 is a HUGE step up. Especially for your first centerfire. The .300 is a great cartridge, and I am not downplaying it, but if I were in your shoes, I would get something like a .30-06, or .308.
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Old July 31, 2007, 03:56 PM   #11
Zombie Steve
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...another vote for .30-06.
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Old July 31, 2007, 04:44 PM   #12
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I've killed them with .223, .243, .270 and .300 Win Mag. The .300 hit was ghastly (killed one while mule deer hunting). My pick has been my .243, 105 gr. For whatever reason, that gun has served me well on proghorn and mule deer now. I liked the .270 also, cartridge-wise, but my rifle is an auto and the dusty, dirty conditions of the prairie gave the action some fuctional difficulties. Too much cleaning involved. I would highly recommend sticking with a bolt action. Much more reliable and better shooting.

With all that said, my dad has used nothing but a 30-06 with regular deer loads, 150 gr I think. Other than one he killed in self defense at about 20 feet, the wounds haven't been any more damaging than my .243.

HIBC has some very good advice. Be careful when gutting to not puncture the bladder or gut bag. Not only does it sour the meat, you're going to probably hurl. And don't bomb away at running animals, you have no idea how fast they can run until you see them. That's a gauranteed gut shot (again, you're gonna hurl) or hind quarter explosion (1/2 of all the meat is gone). Take the time to stalk properly and get in range for a standing shot. Also, make sure you know the game laws on leaving proof of sex on the animal, required in most western states. Good luck.
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Old July 31, 2007, 06:02 PM   #13
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I've hunted 'lopes since before puberty and that was nearly 4 decades ago. They're lightly framed animals with fairly thin hides. It doesn't take much caliber to knock 'em over.

My average shot is something like 250 to 275 yards. I suggest a fast cartridge which can be shot accurately at this long range. My first choice is .243 with 95 grain Ballistic Tip.

The very first big game animal I ever killed was a Wyoming bull elk taken while hunting with my Grandad. Neither of ever read hunting magazines, come to think of it, neither did the elk. I killed that bull with two chest shots fired from Grandad's battered Winchester saddle carbine in 30-30. The bull toppled over when the second softnose bullet smashed through his ribs. Since then, I lost track of how many elk I've taken. But my .308 carbine has more reach than the 30-30 and hits harder, too. Plain 180 grain core-lockt ammo by Remington works quite well indeed! But new Premium ammo deserves a strong look.

If it were me, I'd forget that magnum and buy a Remington model 7 .308 carbine and 5 boxes of 150 grain Premium ammo such as AccuTip. Get in some serious practise time using make shift field positions. Plan to do all your shooting at about 225 yards so. You have to hit an empty 1 gallon paint can every time from any position before you're ready to take on a big herd bull. Practise shooting twice. Get that second shot off quickly but accurately. Practise will make you a master of that carbine. I'm certain somebody with limited math skills will tell you his favorite magnum hits harder blah blah. But two well placed .308 bullets produce far more damage than one 300 Weatherby bullet. I'm sharing this truth from experience.

Buy a good 2X to 7X scope. Used Redfield scopes go for about $100. on ebay. But new Simmons are quite good too. A properly sighted .308 carbine is certainly up to long distance antelope hunting.

Good hunting to you.
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Old July 31, 2007, 06:33 PM   #14
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My vote for a factory cartridge would probably be .270 WSM. Only because I might get shot for recommending the 25-06, my favorite. This pick is based on possibly needing more reach than you will probably need. I also have and love the .300 WM. It will kick hard but is very accurate and will out reach the ability of the shooter by about 300%. Barnes Bullet company does make a 140 grainer. In mine I shoot 168 grain Barnes TSX bullets because they reach with anything and penetrate with anything. The only load I will ever shoot at anything. Also in my rifle no load has exceeded 1" yet for 5 shots. Master this round and you will never really need more for anything.
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Old August 2, 2007, 05:24 PM   #15
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To my limited understanding & way of thinking, the .243 is about perfect for pronghorns, a .25 cal like .25-06 is a bit strong, but good for long shots, and .270 is nearly overkill, but perhaps at the upper end not being "overkill". But like Art said, there isn't really 'too much', except for the fact that the high speed bullet makes a lot of meat bloodshot if you hit one of the shoulders on the way in or the way out.

I will say that a light little pill such as the 140 grainer in a .300 maggie would definitely get there FAST, extending your PBR to close to 275 or more yards, depending on how much margin of error you are willing to accept. And it would have almost no wind drift. So if you are shooting at ranges beyond 150 or 200 in windy conditions, then I'd say that the cartridge in question is NOT too much. Making the hit is what's important, and speed helps kick the wind's rearend. Just try to shoot broadside, not quartering away or toward, so that you get a clean ribcage entrance & exit.

The .270 WSM is arguably the ultimate LARGE game, VERY LONG range cartridge (elk, moose, and such). It's a bit much for little old pronghorns though. The main concern other than bloodshot meat is of course recoil (flinch development), and noise/blast. To a lesser extent, ammo cost.
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Old August 2, 2007, 06:45 PM   #16
davlandrum
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I have heard that lope meat is a little tougher and not as tasty as deer/elk. I would eat it anyway, but am curious to hear from people that have had it often enough to give a good opinion. In Oregon, I think I have about 12 preference points built up, but it is almost a "once in a lifetime" draw it is so restricted.
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Old August 2, 2007, 08:53 PM   #17
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as long as you're not using a .50 cal sniper, i don't think you're going to overkill
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Old August 2, 2007, 09:25 PM   #18
Yithian
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LOL
You can cheat too...

Handload some Sabots.
Chop that recoil "kick" in half.

http://www.eabco.com/reload02.html
http://www.barnesbullets.com/products/rifle/tsx-bullet/

Barnes 22 Cal. Triple-Shock™ X-Bullet 70gr TSX BT...
At 4400 FPS and vital zone radius of 5 inches...
Max PBR of 483 yards. Max PBR zero of 415 yards.
Energy at PBR is 1159.9 ft/lbs.

As calculated at http://www.eskimo.com/~jbm/calculations/traj/traj.html
At an altitude of 1972 ft.
Not sure where you live but higher gets flatter depending on weather.

Dont use them in a BOSS or muzzlebrake barrel. It tends to grab the sabot early.

Start with a load of slower medium-speed Varget or Win 748 at about 64-65gr.
That should yield around 3600-3800 FPS.
Work your way up looking for signs of pressure.
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Last edited by Yithian; August 2, 2007 at 09:56 PM.
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Old August 3, 2007, 10:22 AM   #19
NRA4life
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Davlandrum,

I have killed more than a dozen pronghorn and I consider them some of the best wild game you can eat. It's mild and tender compared to some others. Lately on some MT trips, I have not drawn the Antelope permit and my wife is PO'd when I can't bring one back. Got a couple small does on the last few trips that were excellent table fair.
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Old August 3, 2007, 01:24 PM   #20
davlandrum
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NRA - thanks for the info. I always take it with a grain of salt when I hear about how "bad" some particular critter is to eat. Poor handling leads to a lot of those stories.
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Old August 3, 2007, 02:14 PM   #21
Jack O'Conner
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This is what they call a kid buck. Just a little buck who weighed about 85 lbs live weight. But a genuine trophy on the dinner plate! Taste and texture is very much like lamb.

My rifle is Remington's 760 in .243 with Simmons Aetec scope. Accurasy is amazing with 95 grain Ballistic Tips or Accutips!

You need to get out to Wyoming or South Dakota and have some fun hunting these amazing animals.

Jack
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Old August 3, 2007, 05:23 PM   #22
NRA4life
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Jack,

YUM! My last 2 trips to SE MT I did not draw the either sex permit so we bought some Doe/Fawn permits. I will not hesitate to take a small doe or kid buck, especially after I've put 125 lbs of mule deer meat on the ground. IMO, that is the best game meat I've ever eaten.
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