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Old November 29, 2005, 01:28 PM   #1
Join Date: October 20, 2005
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Antelope (pronghorn) gun

I just saw a hunting show where they were hunting pronghorn in new mexico. Wide open spaces and knee high grass. The hunter was using a .300 Win. Mag. For one, isn't that approching making road kill out of the animal?

And two. What is a good pronghorn gun? My dad has talked about .243 and .270. Any particular favorite? And how would my 8mm mauser handle these guys. Probably use the american anemic rounds instead of the full power european if I were to carry it. Or is that still a little overkill?
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Old November 29, 2005, 02:20 PM   #2
Dave R
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Any rifle you can shoot well out to 300 yards will probably work for you, as long as it shoots a bullet bigger than .22. and heavier than, what, 100 grains? I see no reason why your 8mm won't work for you. It will just have more drop at long range than some of the faster bullets with better ballistic coefficient. You'd need to know your drop at various distances to make it work.

Your Dad's recommendations are good. My personal preference might be the .260Rem or 6.5X55. But that's just me.
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Old November 29, 2005, 04:00 PM   #3
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270 would be the first choice, 25-06 is another .They aren't that big an animal but you should use a flat shooting cartridge .
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Old November 29, 2005, 04:43 PM   #4
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I've personally witnessed bowling ball sized holes ripped into pronghorn with a 30-06. My personal choice is .243, 100-105 gr. bullets. .270 would be good too. I would highly suggest a bolt action rifle also, versus a semi-auto. Where I hunt it's very windy and dusty and I've seen cycling problems without diligent cleaning.
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Old November 30, 2005, 02:37 AM   #5
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25-06 is pretty good
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Old November 30, 2005, 04:30 AM   #6
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I would say a .270 or 25-06 would work great. I also wouldn't hesitate to use my 7mm rem mag as well. With a 140 gr or 150 gr bullet, I don't think it would really be much of an overkill. Most of your shots when hunting antelope are going to be a good ways out there. I want something that will reach out with out too much bullet drop. The only antelope hunt I've been on, the shortest shot was 250 yards. I took mine at just over 300 yards with my .270 and a friend of mine took the other buck that started hooking mine while it was on the ground with a .308. Both guns did a good job.
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Old November 30, 2005, 04:36 AM   #7
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I think a 260 Rem launching a 120 grain ballistic tip would be about perfect.

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Old November 30, 2005, 06:26 AM   #8
Jack O'Conner
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Most antelope hunters I've met hunt with a bolt action rifle in 270. My best friend hunts with either of his Rugers in 220 Swift or 25-06. Both are lethal long range antelope cartridges.

Pronghorned antelope are not big animals. Avereage mature doe weighs about 85 to 100 lbs. A really big buck is rarely heavier than 115 lbs or so. Their hides are thin compared to elk or moose. Very large lungs with oversized heart and major blood vessels are found inside the chest. This is why they can run so fast! Yet a hit anywhere in the chest will quickly topple the animal.

This kid/buck weighed about 80 lbs and was dropped in his tracks at about 275 yards or so. A chest hit that destroyed the lungs. Rifle is a Remington slide action in .243 which is unaltered. It left the factory as a tack driver! I've used a variety of bullets over the years. 80 grain Sierra Pro Hunter, 85 grain Speer, and others. But best accurasy for me has been with 95 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip.

Good hunting to you.
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Old November 30, 2005, 09:07 AM   #9
Art Eatman
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The main thing is knowing your trajectory and the distance to the target. (As usual. )

A .243 is plenty big enough. Good shot placement with an '06 won't hurt any meat.

I fell into a deal on a ranch just north of Marfa, Texas, getting a nearly-free hunt. We found a nice, cooperative patient buck of some 15", so I busted him. Took the shoulder-mount part over to the taxidermist at El Paso. Eventually Mr. UPS arrived with the mount. I'm still chuckling about how the "stretch job" makes him look much larger than life. Heck, I've seen 150-pound mule deer that weren't that broad across the shoulders! Not bad for a critter that dressed out at maybe 90 pounds...

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Old November 30, 2005, 11:14 AM   #10
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All of the above mentioned rounds will work just dandy. If a guy wants to shoot speed goats with a big magnum that's fine too. Just remeber that with any round approaching 3000F/s to use a good quality controlled expansion bullets or you will get some rather nasty exit wounds on a poor little ole goatalope.

I saw a guy shoot a buck two years ago with a .300 Weatherby using 180gr silver balistic tips at like 3200 FPS. He shot the poor little buck at less than 100 yards. The resulting wound was gruesome to say the least. It blew a hole the size of a beach ball out the off side and we found bullet fragments in the both hind quarters as well.

That same shot at that same evelocity with a nosler or an X bullet or some such would have been quite a bit more tame.

I've seen hot .25's do about the same thing with soft bullets.

My favorite pronghorn gun is a .308 win shooting a 150 gr factory corelokt. Shoots as flat as I can stand and does very little meat damage. I used to shoot goats with a .257 Weatherby. While plenty a flat shooter that little devil did some bodacious explosive damage to the meat.

I do like the 06 or the .308 with proper bullets and moderate load on antelope.

the .270, .25-06, 7mm-08, .264, .260, .243, .6mm rem, Are all great rounds as well as are a whole list I didn't mention here!

Antelope hunting fun, me like!
Velocity is thrilling, But diameter does the real killing.
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Old November 30, 2005, 04:56 PM   #11
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I have heard of people useig a .22-.250 for that type of hunting but if it were me I would go with something like a 6mm .243 or .270 all verry flat shooting guns with ample knock down power use like a 100 grn. in the .243 ant a 130 in the .270 the 6mm an 82 grn would work great your choice never shot a .25-06 but heard great things about it
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Old November 30, 2005, 05:51 PM   #12
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I should add that I had shot several with .223 and anchored them with one shot. However, they were 2 small does. When Mr. 16" super buck confronted me, it was a different story. I think I hit him 4 or 5 times before he began assuming ambient air temperature. Last day pronghorn hunting with the Mini-14 that was. The SOB ended up running into this real wet spot where I darn near had to leave a pair of boots behind. Like his last dieing breath was "I'll show that idiot". And he did.
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Old November 30, 2005, 07:16 PM   #13
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I hunted them for years when I lived in the Black Hills. Always used a 25/06 with 117 gr Sierra bullets.

Pronghorns are small. They're easy to put down. I wanted a round that would shoot flat and accurately and not damage much meat. The 25/06 with a 10X Redfield silhouette scope worked just fine.

My closest shot was at 125 yds (running and no, I didn't hit the one I was aiming at, I hit the 3rd one behind him ) and the longest was at 365 yds.

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