View Full Version : What Would Your Rifle Be?

March 31, 2008, 04:04 PM
OK, you've made the commitment to go on a Black Bear hunt on the coastal areas of British Columbia or Alaska. What would be your weapon of choice, considering style, material of rifle and stock, caliber/bullet combination, scope, and any other accessories you think the gun would need? Have fun with this. Thanks:)

March 31, 2008, 04:15 PM
For black bear my 98 Mauser in 30-06 with my handloads would be all I want.

March 31, 2008, 04:24 PM
I think I'd call Ken up and see about getting one of those Master Guide's in 45-70, SS with the kelvar stock and prolly just a good peep sight.

March 31, 2008, 04:24 PM
Yep a 30-06 is fine for Black Bears but if you are expecting to see any Brownies I would jump up to at least a .338 mag.
Just my $.02.:)

March 31, 2008, 07:20 PM
Looks like my Ruger No. 1 in 45-70 gov't would fit the bill. I'd take some of the hotter, modern loads and be very confortable with it.

Might buy a .44 mag for my hip as a back up though since we are blue skying...

March 31, 2008, 07:46 PM
Yep a 30-06 is fine for Black Bears but if you are expecting to see any Brownies I would jump up to at least a .338 mag.
Just my $.02.

My handloads out of a 26" barrel are right at a 300 mag. With heavy bullets they ought to work on browns too. Course I'm not the one goin bear huntin so I don't have it to worry about.:D

March 31, 2008, 08:35 PM
OK, you've made the commitment to go on a Black Bear hunt on the coastal areas of British Columbia or Alaska.
Been there done that at least in Alaska and heading back in 09. Here is my limited experience since I've only killed one bear. Black Bears are not hard to kill, if you do your job with shot placement. I like the high shoulder shot on bears especially if hunting in or near thick timber, saves having to track a wounded animal that can and will bite or claw back.

Standard calibers work fine but would probably stay with a .270 class or larger rifle, might dip as low as a 6.5 on the low end. I chose the 06 using a 200 grain Nosler Partiton, 52 grains of H4350 and CCI large rifle primers. I chose 200 grain bullets because they were setting on the bench gathering dust. I do recommend a premium bullet though because if trying to break heavy bone like bear shoulders you want a bullet that will do it. I got a perfect golf ball size exit in the off side shoulder at 200 yards so the good ol Nosler performed perfectly.

I used a .30-06 M700 ADL for one reason only it was my only synthetic stocked rifle, would have liked to have used other rifles but these were extreme conditions I was hunting in. 200+ inches of rainfall in a year where I hunted, plus constantly riding in a metal boat and climbing rocks and thick forests will beat up a nice wood stock. Did I mention rain, it was very wet plus with all the salt water as I hunted coastal AK rust started very fast on my rifle. I recommend a Stainless and Synthetic rifle for this kind of hunt. This was a spot and stalk hunt if I'd been hunting over bait I might have brought one of my wood stocked rifles.

For a scope get a good one because there are no set hunting hours if you hunt AK. I used a 2.5-8X36 Leupold VXIII and was very pleased, I'm sure it took a beating on the plane ride and still held zero, not to mention the beating it took on the hunt. Plus it gathered in all the light I needed to make a good shot on my bear, it wasn't close to sunset but it was overcast that day. I'm not saying you have to use Leupold but don't be afraid to spend $3-400 on a good scope.

Good accessories to have for your rifle are lots and lots of Rem Oil wipes, bore snake, electrical tape for muzzle, sling, shooting sticks, and butler creek scope flip up scope caps. The rest of my recommendations will be for hunting coastal AK. Good things for you to have quality rain gear like Helle Hansen Impertech, ankle fit hip waders, good binoculars if spotting bears from off shore 10X at least, GPS w/spare batteries, maps and compass. Don't forget fire starter, lighters or water proof matches, rope or 550 cord, and a tarp. Good day pack with hydration bladder, and some easy to keep snack foods like pop tarts and granola bars. Dress in layers, wool is your friend cotton is bad, get good under ware for your base layer used some stuff called Wickers, way cheaper than Under Armor and it worked very well.

If you are going un-guided make sure you know how to properly skin the bear out. In AK you must have the head outside the hide to be sealed. You don't want to ruin your trophy by screwing up the skinning job. As soon as you get to town make arrangements to find some one to donate your meat to, as bringing it all home will be expensive if you are flying it. Most canneries in AK will freeze and box your hide and skull to fly back on the airline as an extra piece of luggage. They can send it back FedEx or UPS as well depending on the carrier that services that area.

April 1, 2008, 12:36 AM
i'd take my bow.....and a sidearm but that would be it:D

April 1, 2008, 12:39 AM
i'd take my bow.....and a sidearm but that would be it

When I reenlisted in the army I enlisted to go to AK, and I always wanted to go bear hunting with a bow in AK...hense my screen name "hoyt" in ak :D

April 1, 2008, 01:03 AM
Look for the "12ga rifle from hell" in the "art of the rifle" forum:D

April 1, 2008, 06:54 AM
I would go with my TC Encore in 45-70. I would probably pick up some synthetic stocks for it just for the fact that my wood ones are too nice to take out on that kind of trip. The barrel and frame are stainless so that is taken care of. I would probably keep my current setup of the KonusPro 1.5-5x32 scope on the rifle. It can always come off if I tear it up or something. Past that get some Buffalo Bore loads or work up some handloads if I had the time and take a bear.

From my knowledge of when I was in Kodiak it rained about 60% of the time I was up there. So given that much I would opt for a stainless/synthetic gun just to buck the weather...even though I hate the looks of them.


April 1, 2008, 07:24 AM
I am thinking a Armalite AR-50 and a mule to carry it. Must be why I am not going:D
Sounds like a great time though. Watch them on the hunting shows. All I can say is you folks have bigguns. Good luck.

April 1, 2008, 01:49 PM
lever action guide rifle in 45/70 with iron sights and a scope as well with see through mounts. SCope i would get would be a zeiss conquest (have several) or at the least a elite 3200. I would leave the scope at a simple 3-9x40 or around that range.

April 1, 2008, 03:35 PM
Ruger M77 - .338 Win. Mag. w/elite 3200 3-9X40 is what I use. 225gr bullets.

April 1, 2008, 03:36 PM
Marlin 336 in 30-30 using a 170 gr bullet is good medicine for black bear.

April 3, 2008, 12:06 PM
In that scenario, my rifle of choice would be a Blaser R-93 Professional in 9.3x62 scoped with a Leupold VXIII 1.5-5 Illuminated reticle. My load of choice would be 55 grs Varget, Fed GM215M primer, under a 285 gr PRVI bullet in Lapua brass, and my secondary load would be 53 grs Varget, Fed GM215M primer, under a 250 gr Accubond in Lapua brass.

April 3, 2008, 12:56 PM
I agree with HOYTINAK, 45-70 Guide rifle, peep or any other open sight. In that rifle, the reloads can be very stout.


April 3, 2008, 01:15 PM
Smith and Wesson 460 XVR....

lt dan
April 6, 2008, 09:18 AM
sportdog, can you help me. i have never seen a black bear or any bear.i thought of them to be massive. however if i see the feedback(i thought at least 375h&h, 416 rigby or bigger) on your qeustion i asume the blackbear is smaler than i thought and not as big as the grizly i see on tv. will a black bear atack? what does it weigh? what is the size of their teeth? is it mating season when you go hunting? will you hunt male or female? what is the normal distance for a kill and is this in the open or thick bush?

April 6, 2008, 11:28 AM
Black bear are considerably smaller than grizzlies. On the east coast, bears weighing 300-500 pounds are the norm, But they do get bigger.

On the west cost they can get larger than that, but the black bears are still smaller than grizzlies.

W. C. Quantrill
April 6, 2008, 02:56 PM
I would ask first, what do you presently have? Perhaps you already have what it takes. Bears are mostly hair. When you skin one, they are not that big, and are considered a thin skinned game. If you get a particularly large one in the fall, it just has more fat, and you need something that will penetrate that fat layer to get to the boiler room.

A .50 muzzle loader will send a patched round ball completely though one, so you dont need a cannon.

Again, what do you have available, or are you wanting to purchase something just for the trip?

April 6, 2008, 05:40 PM
Thats easy :) I'd take my savage 111 30-06 with the leupold 3-9 scope and 220 grain nosler bullet ..... whooo that sounds fun :D

roy reali
April 6, 2008, 08:09 PM
I guess my Red Ryder would be out of the question?:D

April 6, 2008, 08:54 PM
I use my ruger m77 in 338 win mag with a buris fullfield 2 3x9 250 gr nosler partition :cool:

April 6, 2008, 09:47 PM
Just to answer some questions that some of the posters to this thread have asked I'll try to address them. First off, I have made up my mind that if there is one hunt that I want to make, this type of bear hunt is it! I'm in the pre-planning stages such as asking these types of questions, going over web sites of outfitters that offer this type of hunt, trying to create a network of people with first hand experience that are willing to share information, getting a solid idea of the cost so that I can make adjustments in my lifestyle if need be to up my "personal mad money" funds. What prompted this question is a result of a couple of web site outfitter pages that recommended rifle calibers. These outfitters recommended 338WinMag. As others on this thread have stated, even large black bears are taken with firearms with much less power than the 338WinMag. I'm not trying to get people on here to side against the outfitter recommendations, just trying to hear from folks on what they would consider ample firepower for this hunt. My personal arsenal right now consists of three 30-06's (two bolt, one semi-auto), a custom 8mm mauser, a bolt 7mmWSM, and a bolt 243. Myself, I think that with suitable ammo, all of these rifles would be up to the task with the exception of the 243. The 30-06 semi-auto is out for me if the range wasn't within 100 yards because the thing is just not very accurate. Of the four rifles left, the slight edge in accuracy goes to the 7mmWSM. Tied for second are the 8x57 mauser and the 22inch barrel 30-06. My 24" barrel 30-06 I just haven't shot enough to determine its ability to perform. Obviously if the outfitter that I end up choosing wants me to get a bigger rifle then I will reluctantly go along with it but I'm not really keen on spending the money or shooting a rifle with more recoil. I got rid of a 300WinMag because of recoil when I was a young buck but had little experience with high power rifles back then. None of my present rifles bother me but I don't care for my 3" 2oz turkey shotgun loads! This is not a life or death decision at this point. I was just throwing it out there for some information and see if anything would strike home to me. Information is valuable and important so that's why I'm putting this out there in cyber space. Thanks for the input so far. It is appreciated.:)

April 7, 2008, 03:30 AM
I am planning to go Black Bear hunting soon, and will use a 300 WBY, because that is what I have and I know it to be more than adequate for Black Bear or any other game on this continent. I have have hand loaded and tested 180 gr Barnes TSX's, they are proven effective and I have used them on mule deer here in Montana with awesome results. I expected much more meat damage than was present, and was delighted by their effect on my mule deer, it was a little over 150 yrds and it was like flipping a switch and turning the off the deer. The Barnes bullet penetrated completely and may still be going. Have been scouting sites in the Beartooth mountains, where three camp grounds have been closed due to Black bear becoming a nuisance and a hazard to campers, have seen but no Bears yet, but am hopeful, as they may still be emerging from hibernation. I want a black bear hide in a blanket mount. Am uncertain what to do with the meat, as discarding the flesh is illegal in Montana, and all bear meat has to be tested for trichenella, and if positive the meat destroyed and no reissue of tags. The local authorities consider the black bear to more dangerous than grizzly because they will in the spring actually stalk the hunter, because they have been fasting all winter while in hibernation. Hunting in pairs is encouraged, because this area is quite remote and there is still snow and frozen lakes at over 10000 ft until the middle of summer.

April 7, 2008, 09:23 AM
the 30/06 or 8mm Mauser are plenty.

Like you mentioned earlier, take a gun you are comfortable with and can shoot accurately.

W. C. Quantrill
April 7, 2008, 11:06 AM
That is interesting that you mentioned it, as I had a large black bear stalk me in the Sangre de Cristos about 5 years ago. We got a late spring snow, and I went up into an area that had been having bear problems with livestock and walked a large circle to come back to find that the big bear had come in from the side then began following my tracks.

It sounds like you have plenty of firepower. No matter what anyone says on the forums, the final decision rests between you and the outfitter that you employ. Perhaps you could phrase it to him in terms like "Which bullet do you recommend for my .30-06"?

Jack O'Conner
April 15, 2008, 09:14 AM

This .308 carbine has been to Canada for moose and caribou. Might work for black bear, too. ;)


April 15, 2008, 09:38 AM
Black bear.....06
Brown version.....300win mag.
Both kill, Both are accurate as heck.
i'd take my bow.....and a sidearm but that would be it
By the way, how do you get into Canada w/ a sidearm?

April 15, 2008, 10:54 AM
i'd take my bow.....and a sidearm but that would be it

Don't forget a good pair of sneakers if you miss. All you need to do is be able to outrun the guy you are hunting with.:D

06 is plenty for black bears

roy reali
April 15, 2008, 11:02 AM
Here in Nevada it is illegal to have a sidearm during bow season. The same is true in California. So, before bow hunting with a handgun on your hip, check your state's hunting regulations. Otherwise you will be having a conversation with some guy with a gun on his hip and a badge on his chest.

April 15, 2008, 12:37 PM
Here in Wyo, they passed a law last year allowing bow hunters to carry sidearms..Has the Game and Fish guys panties all wadded up..LOL

April 15, 2008, 01:00 PM
yup, in SD where I am from and go back to hunt, you can carry a side arm. I always do and almost had to use mine one season on a tresspasser who was poaching deer and started to make a move for his gun until he noticed I had a holster and nice little snubby detetive special and my hand was already on the holster and had un buttoned the strap.

Mainly I just use the snubby in case i wonder upon a prairie rattler orif I were to wonder upon some meth heads setting up shop (they are real bad for going into the woods and doing their thing and then leaving the crap all over the place).


April 15, 2008, 04:37 PM
Model 70 300 win mag in stainless with the plastic stock.

April 15, 2008, 04:49 PM
Marlin Guide Gun 45/70

350gr Hornady FNSP
51.5gr IMR4198*
Fed LR Mag primer
2.54" OAL


That outta do it.

*Disclaimer: Data worked up in my rifle with Ruger level load data. Use caution. Not responsible for your stupidity, just mine. Operates at less than 43500 CUP.

April 15, 2008, 05:38 PM
Only coastal black bear I've seen was in my "pre-sanity" days when I was a granola-eating hippie going to college in Seattle.:p

Bear was huge though... I saw him in the Olympic national forest over in the southwest corner of the peninsula. He was at least 700 pounds. Physically, bigger than any of the elk we saw on the trip or any cattle I've ever seen. Very well fed and confident that he wasn't likely to be bothered by us pesky 2-leggers.

Were I to deliberately go back to that area with intent to hunt that particular bear... I'd want a rifle that was MY rifle, not something I just bought 2 months ago just to appease a game guide and get another 500 ft/lbs or so. Something I've put a couple thousand rounds through and know well.

If for you, that's one of your .30-06 bolties, then great.

The only gun that might be suitable for this particular bear, residing in MY safe, is a Mosin 91/30 with 180gr loads. That's a skosh underpowered, but I don't live in WA anymore... the bear here are much smaller.

Ideally, I'd have a .338 Winmag that I could shoot like a demon were I to deliberately plan to hunt a predator weighing at least 600 pounds.

April 15, 2008, 09:26 PM
Why not a stainless/synthetic bolt action in .375 H&H?

April 15, 2008, 11:34 PM
Because I only have a pistol in 375 H&H Mag, not a rifle. But my pistol is stainless and synthetic.


April 30, 2008, 05:57 PM
The 30-06 Cal. is enough gun for any animal in North America. I didn't just think that up myself. Many of the experts feel the same.

April 30, 2008, 08:30 PM
Around home, I know alot of bear hunters that use .44mag revolvers. If i was hunting short range, I'd probably choose one as well.

April 30, 2008, 09:47 PM
My choice would depend on a few things.
You didn't mention if this was going to be a guided hunt with a pro outfitter or not.
It matters.
When I went on a brown bear hunt, the outfitter (excellent by the way) told me not to bring anything smaller than a 300 Win Mag--That was HIS bare min. caliber.
When you got to camp, you had to prove you could shoot and we did--if you couldn't shoot--you didn't hunt.
I was instructed NOT to bring ANY handguns to camp and if you did, it stayed at camp.
It was also made very clear that if things got dangerous as in the hunter had bad shot placement or a bear charged, that the guide would shoot the bear and it was YOUR bear --no whinning--if you could not anchor it, he would.

I mention this because you MAY run into a brown on your black bear hunt.
Who you are hunting with and what calibers they use and how good they are matters.
Even the guys that take bear with a bow, USUALLY have a skilled hunter backing them with a large caliber proven rifle.

So, I would look at taking something along the lines of a .338 Magnum.
I like Mausers myself for their controlled round feeding and other reasons--so do MANY guides.
I wouldn't consider a single shot anything UNLESS I was being backed up by others that had the ability to get off multiple quick shots.
I would make sure I took a proven rifle that functions properly---feeding being very important--and I would practice with it.
Synthetic stock would be a good idea.
Good safe trigger not under 3 lbs.
I would invest in a top of the line scope--don't try to save money here it could ruin your hunt.

Much of what I said is with the thought you will have a good chance of running into a brown in the area you'll be hunting in.
I would talk to my guide ( if using one) or the rest of my hunting party and base some of what I did on their abilities and what they intend on carrying and how good they are ---under stress.

If I was 100% sure all I was going to see is black bears, I wouldn't be so concerned about all these things.


April 30, 2008, 10:57 PM
When you got to camp, you had to prove you could shoot and we did--if you couldn't shoot--you didn't hunt.

What kind of refund did the Guide offer if he refused to let you hunt? If I'm paying to hunt, it is his right to refuse to take me but I'd better get 100% refund of my money that I paid the guide service. Plus what was his requirements on being able to shoot? I'm sure they weren't too unreasonable as most Brown Bears are taken at short ranges. Were 2-3" groups at 100 yards acceptable to your guide or was he wanting sub moa groups?

As far as needing more rifle than what the OP has for the chance encounter with a Brownie, I don't see the need if it is a guided hunt in Brown Bear country. The OP will not be the one to drop the hammer on a Brown unless it has already taken the guide out. It will be the guides job to determine how to handle the Brown Bear as the AK F&G will have a nice set of hefty fines if they can't prove that their lives were in danger.

As far as an unguided hunt goes then that will be up to what the OP is comfortable shooting.

April 30, 2008, 11:09 PM
Take what you have and are comfortable with,shots on coastal bears vary I've been within 50 yds and was with a group that took one at over 300 yds most shots will be closer but sometimes the bear of a lifetime is 200 yds out an theres no cover,if you know you can make the shot , OK but if you aren't sure no magnum will do the deed for you.Buy the way the 50 yd shot was taken by a guy with a new 375 with me standing over his shoulder taking pictures, he missed.

April 30, 2008, 11:30 PM
It was 3 shoots off hand standing position in a 6 inch circle @ 100 yards---if you couldn't do that you lost your deposit and stayed in camp.
None in our party failed to do this but one guy from another group did while we were there---it was the rifles fault don't you know;).
The outfitter told us there are guys that show up and can't shoot and he didn't want to mess with them---it was ALL explained up front in all the information and contract BEFORE you showed up so no ones fault but your own if you went and couldn't shoot.

As to your second paragraph, thats why I asked if it was guided or not.

If its a unguided hunt, the OP may be very comfortable with a .243 and nothing larger---if thats the case, on this particular hunt in that area, I would suggest he stay home.

It isn't about a magnum doing the job for you as in overcoming very poor shot
placement---it is about stopping power.
A wounded brown can cover 50 yards in a blink of an eye.
The guy that missed at 50 yards is the reason why the guy I used tested your abilities when you got in camp.
Some wealthy guys purchase their rifles 2 weeks before camp and show up unprepared to hunt and shoot.
I understood the guides rules--it was a serious hunt and he expected all involved to be as serious as he was.


May 1, 2008, 12:02 AM
If its a unguided hunt, the OP may be very comfortable with a .243 and nothing larger---if thats the case, on this particular hunt in that area, I would suggest he stay home

Well the OP is actually talking about the .30-06, and yes it doesn't have the stopping power of a .338 Win but it will kill a brown bear just as dead. It takes a very cool head to face a charging bear be it black or brown regardless, but a missed shot with a .338 will not stop a bear any better than a missed shot with a .30-06. Will the .30-06 stop a charging bear better than the .338 Win, probably not but I'll bet it can stop them still with a well placed shot. Better IMO to be confident with the .30-06 than to doubt the .338 Win as the OP stated that he didn't like the recoil of the .300 Win. Truth is most people can't tolerate the recoil of the .338 Win without using some kind of recoil reducing device, and develop shooting problems quick when shooting without recoil reduction.

In my limited experience, I took a black bear on a DIY hunt in Southeast Alaska with a .30-06 and didn't feel under gunned once. It was rumored that browns had started showing up as far South as where we were hunting, but I never saw one. I defiantly would not go smaller than the .30-06 if hunting in known brown bear territory.

May 1, 2008, 12:03 AM
here in Washington.
I'm looking forward to hitting the bush for Black bear with either my T/C New Englander.50 with patched RB over 70 gr, M70 .308, m88 or M100 same caliber using 165gr Sierra SPBT or HPBT @ 2450fps. Back-up is M500 12ga or Ithaca M37 16ga. For grins T/C Contender in either 30/30 using the cowboy 165 lead or .357Mag,Have .44 but .357 is more controllable.

Later for Elk, will be the M70 with 165 Noslers/Barnes or 180 Sierra'[email protected] about 2650 fps. May try the New Englander with maxi-Hunter for range and hitting power.

May 14, 2008, 02:13 AM
My .30-06 has dropped everything it's shot at--as have millions in other hands-- so I see no reason to expect differently of it in northern latitudes. That said I suppose I wouldn't turn down a .338 if someone would loan it to me, but it wouldn't be a must have on the list at Bass Pro. Pawn shop maybe, but not new.

May 14, 2008, 04:03 AM
Hunting Black Bears ,with the possibility, of running across an angry Brownie,I would have to choose a 700 Rem. with a good trigger,wearing a Burris Fullfield,3X9 , with some stiff handloads,in 338Win Mag. pushing a Premium 250gr bullet.

May 14, 2008, 05:17 PM
There are many, many options.

I wont touch on metal finish choices or stock; only cartridge choice.

First off, I'd like to tell you about the only weapon I've had to use against a Black Bear.
I got cornered between the locked passenger door of my truck (truck running, keys in the ignition), a 5 foot deep stream, and an angry mother. You see; I was about 15 feet from her, with her cub forcing himself tightly against her back legs.

Having been charged by this 250 pound bear twice, a month earlier; I knew I was in a bad spot. It was me or her! I grabbed the closest weapon available, and charged her. Dumbest mistake of my life... but it seemed like a good idea at the time.

Anywho, it turned out she was, in fact, afraid of big muddy sticks. She ran off into the woods with the cub, and I ran off into the truck to change my underwear.

Big muddy stick +1
8x57 Mauser sitting in the passenger seat... call it a draw.

As a close to my Big Muddy Stick story, I'll tell you where it was.
(You, right there! Yea, you, that just sat back and said "They aint got no bears in Florida." You are the reason I added that. ;))

Back to the subject-

I think anything from 30-06 up should do just fine. I am a bit of an 8x57 fan, though. I would include it in the group, since the heavier bullets will typically offer equal or better penetration within the proper ranges.

Some specific calibers that come to mind, and may have already been mentioned:
--General use--
.300 Win Mag/.300 Weatherby
.338 Win Mag/.340 Weatherby
.358 Win
.458 Win / Lott (why not)
.35 Whelen/.350 Rem Mag (Know your effective range)
.375 Whelen
.400 Whelen (Don't start the headspace discussion please.)
.411 Hawk

Oh, I just saw your other post about being an 8x57 Mauser fan. If you reload to make the most of the cartridge, or can buy some European manufactured ammo - Go with it! Good shots wont let you down. If you shoot factory ammo - I would take the 30-06, and not worry about buying another rifle.

Reason behind the Mauser compromise:
As I'm sure you may know already; most American made 8x57IS(JS, .323") hunting ammo is not up to par.
Federal is the only company I know for sure that actually uses .323" bullets. Everything else I have measured comes out to .318"-.320", yet are still marked with all the warnings about it being only for the .323" bore.
We pounded a couple brands through a chronograph a few years ago. The only one that broke 2200 fps (23" barrel) was the Federal.
Even with the extra speed on Federal's side, the big brands are ALL reported to be light loads.
They may do the job, but handloads, euro ammo, or the 06 are a better choice.

As for the outfitter - it's your money and your hunt. Do it your way.

-My thoughts.

May 14, 2008, 08:39 PM
What about the good ol' 300 Win Mag with 180's? Its got the extra range if needed and the energy if you run into something real big with nasty teeth that wants to play with you:D. Not that its ideal for the big nasty but it could.

May 17, 2008, 01:37 PM
I would chose 7mm Mag. or .308.

I think both with do the job fine.

May 19, 2008, 09:22 PM
Well being most Canadian Bears whether Black,Brown or Polar have been Killed with the .303 British Enfield surplus rifles with military ammo simply because that is what they had to do it with.It would be what I shot best.Alfred

May 22, 2008, 09:35 PM
Any deer caliber will do.

One thing you might consider is that the coastal forests of BC are pretty dense and a carbine might be the way to go. It depends on whether you're hunting from a stand or stalking the bear. The same deal as for deer, a shorter more maneuverable rifle might be better in brush.

If you're worried, contact the person that's taking you hunting.

May 23, 2008, 02:52 PM
If pulling from the safe, either a Remington Model Seven in .308 (lightweight HS Precision stock and Leupold 2-7X compact scope) or a 700 BDL in .30-06 (walnut stock with Leupold 3.5-10X scope). Quality controlled expansion bullet from either.

If buying a rifle for the hunt, I'd lean toward another Remington 700, in .338 Win Mag. I don't believe the .300 Win Mag is enough more powerful than the .30-06 to justify it. Alternately, one of the big bore Marlin Guide Guns.

And if in Alaska, I'd have a 4" .44 Mag Redhawk on my waist.

May 27, 2008, 07:37 PM
Black Bears are not that difficult to kill. Any deer rifle from .243 on up will work just fine at closer ranges. You would only need to go with sometime more powerful if you are anticipating doing some long range shooting.

One of my Dad's neighbors used to hunt black bears a lot in the far northern area of California, before his knees went bad. He only hunted them at close range, though. But he was easily able to dispatch them using a Colt Gold Cup .45 pistol shooting Federal 230 gr HydraShok bullets.

I suspect that Black bears in Canada may be a bit larger, and more tenacious, though. So what worked for my Dad's friend in California, could easily not be advisable there.

But you certainly don't need a magnum class rifle to effectively take Black Bear.


May 28, 2008, 03:08 AM
There are a lot of things you need to know ,are you hunting beaches in the spring, clear cuts in the mountains .Will you be in boats or trucks ,what does your outfitter say about the max range.Hunting spring bears here in P.W.S. or southeast your best bet is stainless whatever ,one dunking in salt is not good for any gun, while most shots can be limited to ranges under 150 do you want to pass the bear of a lifetime because he's past the range of your 45/70 ,or bow ,Black bears are not that hard to kill it's more about what your wanting out of this ,if your outfitter says 338 an your not comfortable with the gun find another outfitter, this is supposed to be your time your hunt ,your money ,time and memories if its not a good experience then the bad memories cost a lot so decide what you need to make this fun for you,always remember the hunt the experience the fun are what this is all about ,the kill a bonus ,if we were all 100% kills hunting season would be very limited ,it's limited enough as it is.So go have fun find what you need to make this the memory of a lifetime, if you can do that with a bow ,or a 500 nitro have fun.

May 28, 2008, 07:53 PM
It would be fun to build a custom rig for your bear hunt(s). You could get one of your 30-06's rebarreled to 35 whelen with about a 20 or 22" barrel and a 1x-5x scope. One of those new fangled finishes on the metal in OD green and a synthetic black stock...

All of a sudden I wish I was going on a bear hunt :rolleyes:

June 2, 2008, 02:58 AM
Ruger #1 in 45-70. :)

June 5, 2008, 01:24 PM
if you don't want an excuse to buy a "new" rifle, then go with the '06 you feel most comfortable with & 180^ premium bullets.
if i had to go with with is on hand:
1. 300wsm winchester mod. 70 with "plastic" stock & 3x9 Leupold.
180 grn. winchester failsafes.
2. .308 remington mod. 600 with "plastic" stock & 3x9 Leupold.
165 grn. nossler balistic tips.
3. 30-06 custom german mauser, wood stock & 3x9 ??? german scope.
180 grn. winchester silver tips.
4. 45-70 marlin guide gun ss w/wood stocks & 2x7 Leupold.
430 grn lead beartooth.
5. 6.5x55 sweed mauser woodstock & 3x9 Leupold.
139 grn norma.
in that order of preferance, but would not feel under gunned with any of them.

that said it would be (for me) the perfect excuse to buy a:

1. .338 fedral in a ss/"plastic" stocked bolt gun with a & 3x9 Leupold or Nikon.
2. .338 win mag maybe a CZ bolt gun with a & 3x9 Leupold or Nikon.

June 14, 2008, 09:38 PM
Remington 7600 pump carbine in 35 Whelen for those up close and personal encounters.

June 16, 2008, 11:51 AM
My bear rifle is now a 378 WBY

June 16, 2008, 11:56 AM
i would definately go with the new remington 700 XCR (extreme conditions rifle) in .300 win mag. cause with all the rain and moisture up there, that rifle would hold up great.

June 19, 2008, 11:43 PM
378 Wby.