View Full Version : Moose

January 10, 2008, 09:28 PM
Planning a Canadian Moose hunt this years and was wondering what calibre would work. I hunt deer and hog and have been using my 444 exclusively.
I would appreciate suggestions.

January 10, 2008, 09:59 PM
Your 444 is just fine for moose.

As far as minimum caliber I wouldn't go any lighter than a 25 caliber rifle, pushing heavy for caliber bullets. Any of the common big game calibers will do the trick.

Right now if I had to pull a rifle from my collection it would probably be the '06, and a second choice would be an 8x57.


January 11, 2008, 11:14 PM
ammo.crafter, I don't have any experience with the .444, but I think it would be fine with one of the stouter bullets (Partition HD or A-Frame) or a cast bullet.

That said, many moose have been shot with a 30-30 at close range. I have a 336 Marlin that shot four (not by my hand, but my dads).

However, I would not use anything less than .270 cal (personally nothing less than .30 cal). A 30-06, 308 etc. would be fine at any range. You could use a 300 WM, 338 WM, etc., but you don't need it. In moose habitat, you will be hard pressed finding a shot over 100 yards. The only long shot would be a shot over a marsh or fenn (don't shot it in the marsh, not fun!).

The trick I think is to have a rifle that is handy in the bush and that you can get a shot off quickly. Your .444 should fit the bill nicely. I moose hunted once with my 300 WM A-Bolt with a 26" barrel and it snagged on everything.

January 12, 2008, 02:36 PM
Your .444 is the best possible rifle for moose because it's the rifle you're most comfortable with.

You might want to talk with your host for the hunt about what their opinion is but I doubt they'll say anything different.

That is unless you just want an excuse to buy a new rifle. Then take it from me nothing takes moose better than that shiny new what's it in the gun shop you've been drooling over for the last few months. ;)

January 12, 2008, 04:18 PM
You'll probably have to get close, but isn't that hunting! Good luck, I hope to bag me a "Bullwinkle" some day as well.

January 13, 2008, 03:59 PM
Thanks, guys. Most likely I'll reload the 444 with 310 gr hard cast lead...that's my black bear load.

January 14, 2008, 01:02 AM
Sounds like an excuse for another rifle!

No your .444 is perfect, especially since you know how to shoot with it.

January 15, 2008, 12:58 AM
Whereabouts are you moose hunting?

January 15, 2008, 10:38 PM
Canada was the plan

January 15, 2008, 10:53 PM
That 444 with your bear load is just the ticket; big hole, good penetration, and big thump. Just don't try to be Billy Dixon and have fun. The canucks will love your rifle. They like simple and effective things,eh?

January 18, 2008, 10:53 AM
Canada was the plan

Where in Canada?

January 18, 2008, 11:08 AM
Just don't try to be Billy Dixon

Or a Canadian sniper :D

Jack O'Conner
January 18, 2008, 11:13 AM
I hunted moose only once so I'm no expert. But two shots from my .308 carbine got the job done. I hunted with plain Remington core-lockt ammo.

My Cree guide is a genuine expert. He has knocked over dozens and dozens of moose & caribou. His hunting rifle may shock a few folks. This man hunts with an antique Remington autoloader in 35 caliber. Yes, this is considered a deer rifle by most hunters. But he had good luck shooting big Canadian animals with those round-nosed 200 grain soft tip bullets.

I read that Babe Ruth hunted in Canada & Maine with the same same rifle and cartridge many decades ago. At one time, the 35 Remington was considered a fine choice for elk as well.

I'm sure your 444 is up to the task of clobbering a big moose.

Good hunting to you.

January 19, 2008, 08:34 PM
444 or 35 is great for 150 yards. When you see the big boy at 600 your 444 isn't
worth a damn. 300 Win mag minimum. If you are paying to hunt dont screw around.

January 22, 2008, 10:18 PM
StuMan - where are you shooting swamp donkeys at 600 yards! :D

StuMan does make a point. It will all depend on where you are moose hunting. If there is any chance that there may be shots that are beyond the effective range of your 444, bring another rifle along for those days.

That said, every moose I have ever seen hunting has been well within the effective range of the 444. The last moose hunt I was on, every single moose we saw was within 50 yards. When I put the scope of my 300 WM on the cows we jumped in the willows (bull only season), they were so close their head and necks filled the field of view on 3x! Not to mention the 26" barrel on my A-Bolt snagged on anything.

Moose hunting can be tough - especially in winter. On mine, I would have gladly taken a quick handling .444, 45-70 in Marlin or a .308 or .358 BLR with a 1.5, 2 or 3x fixed scope.

January 23, 2008, 09:21 PM
StuMan - where are you shooting swamp donkeys at 600 yards!

From the canoe:D, 600 yards is a long way but people do it every day;)

February 8, 2008, 11:39 AM
I will agree that a 444 is a great caliber and well suited for Moose. My in-laws swear by th 30-06. They kill at least 3-4 moose per year. 30-06 has the punch to go through the bush and stay on track. A moose is a very large solid animal, I would not recommend anything less than 30 cal.

T. O'Heir
February 8, 2008, 10:07 PM
Our big moose are regularly killed with one shot out of a bubba'd .303. 180 grain bullets will do nicely.
Your .444 will do as well, but depending on where up here, you're going, it may not be the best. Longer shots than a .444 is good for are possible. It's really a 200 yard maximum cartridge. That'd do in most places up here though.
With Remington 240 grain factory ammo and zeroed at 100, it drops 9.7" at 200, 20.8" at 250. The energy drops like a rock past 200 as well.
A 280 grain bullet has enough energy out to 300(about 1165 ft-lbs), but drops 17.7" at that distance.
You'll need to look at this too.

February 8, 2008, 10:59 PM
BLR in 300WSM, the new native favorite up here...

Open sights

WildhaveyouhuggedyourBLRtodayAlaska TM

February 9, 2008, 12:48 AM
Lived, worked, hunted in Canada (BC) for 12 years. Moose were the easiest to kill of all the ungulates. Most locals used M94s!

If near water be careful as he darned moose will run into the water for protection and you get to wade in. Can get a bit cool!

February 20, 2008, 09:16 PM
Lived, worked, hunted in Canada (BC) for 12 years. Moose were the easiest to kill of all the ungulates. Most locals used M94s!

I have lived here my whole life and my family has only been hunting here for 250 years or so. I own most of the guns that they used and I can tell you, if you are a local in a well populated area you will see lots of Moose within 150 yrds. I have seen alot more well farther than that and since I don't live in moose country anymore, I now have two moose guns. a Model 70 Safari in 375 and I am awaiting on a Sako trg42 in 338LM. I am in no way saying that one of the previously mentioned guns will not do the job as I spent 4 days in the fall with my traditional bow archery hunting moose. I didn't get one (calf tag only) but we saw a couple and I wasn't worried about not getting the job done, but it is a different kind of hunt. If you want to hedge your bet go with something that will "reach out and touch something".

February 23, 2008, 09:26 PM
- I read that Babe Ruth hunted in Canada & Maine with the same same rifle and cartridge many decades ago. At one time, the 35 Remington was considered a fine choice for elk as well. -

That was before larger game got tougher and further away.

February 24, 2008, 12:35 AM
I live in Manitoba and took two moose in the fall with .308 / 180grain Federal Nosler Partitian. Dropped both where they stood from 150 yards and 300 yards (across a marsh).

Its been my experience that you can practically call a moose into your boat during the rut and long range shots are the exception, not the rule.

I would imagine your current gun would be just fine. If he's too far, just give it another call or two or another day.

Enjoy the hunt and the Great White North.