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Old December 9, 2011, 08:33 PM   #1
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What gun for winter in the Colorado mountains?

I am going on a multi day snow shoeing and camping trip tomorrow. I am trying to decide if I should take my glock 32 in .357 sig or if I should stick with the 686 357 mag revolver I carry for the other three seasons in the sticks. The bears go hibernate generally by mid November so I don't expect to see one this time of year. Obviously the size, weight and capacity favor the glock also.

Would you be okay with a 357sig with 125 gr gold dots hp's and also bb and DT fmj loads for the winter or would you still prefer 7 rounds of 357 mag and heavier bullet options?
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Old December 9, 2011, 09:09 PM   #2
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I'd stay with the S&W 357 mag.
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Old December 9, 2011, 10:10 PM   #3
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I hear the Yeti only will succumb to 375 H&H or above
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Old December 9, 2011, 11:12 PM   #4
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Big ups to the Glock 32 .357sig...

Of your choices, I'd towards a Glock 32 semi auto pistol.
The L frame Smith is a good pick too but for carry/protection you'd get the .357magnum power in a semi auto pistol package.

If you plan to use the sidearm for outdoor hunting or range use, the S&W wheelgun would do fine. A factory made 125gr JHP .357magnum can defend you but in remote areas where law enforcement park rangers or "back-up" may hours away, a fully loaded Glock 32 may be better.

Another choice if you have the time & $ is the new Taurus Judge Magnum DA revolver or the S&W Govenor(check correct name).
The Judge Magnum can safely load the .454, the .45LC(long Colt) or the .410 shotgun shell.
Snakes, wild boars, bears, wolves, etc may roam around you not just crank heads & armed robbers.

Stay safe & plan ahead!
Clyde F
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Old December 9, 2011, 11:34 PM   #5
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IMHO I would go with capacity over load options. In a survival situation having enough ammo to signal, fight and/or hunt trumps fending off Yogi. Besides as you said, he and Boo Boo are counting sheep this time a year. Mountain Lion are still awake though, but I've never seen one in the wild, only tracks. People are loud and smell funny, as long as you aren't traveling with pets or on horseback I doubt you'll even see a cougar.

I think you have the right idea on the weight argument and your Glock is the better choice there as well. You might want to consider picking up a G-20 or 29 if bullet weight/energy are a concern.

Good luck on your trip and enjoy the wildlife that you do get to see.
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Old December 10, 2011, 10:55 AM   #6
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I would go with the Glock in the 357.

You loose very little in a 125 gr. Packs better and you can carry a spare clip and have more if you want. Its got a lot more flexibility than a revolver does, some major advantages and no downside I can think of (I do go with penetration over 158 gr slugs doing you any good)

When I was packing a gun for the woods (Alaska and grizzly the primary concern in a 41 magnum) if you had any sense at all the gun was a complete last ditch go to (anything else at all).

with only 6 rounds, firing a shot to deter a bear was a bad option but a good first choice (trust me, if you have ever seen a grizzly really move, you are not going to be using a speed loader).

The joke was you always kept the last round for yourself. Best choice was to get up a tree if you could and wait it out. I carried another 12 rounds in a belt loop setup so that if I had to shoot a bear from a tree I had plenty of rounds to damage it enough to kill it even if it took a while).

With 17 rounds (or whatever the Glock holds) you have a lot more latitude.

I would carry the best penetrating load out there. That's what you need for a bear. I know of 3 cases where semi auto in 9mm or 45 took a bear down. Not a first choice but the more rounds you have the better the odds.

I think the 357 Sig is the most interesting round of the newer offerings (40 and 45 GAP being the other two) that actually achieves what it set out to do.
It also covers any other contingency nicely.

Of course you really should be carrying it in a Sig!
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Old December 10, 2011, 11:41 AM   #7
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The only load in .357 Sig that matches the .357 is the lighter 125 grain offering. This is not what I would want in a woods gun. The revolver will out perform the Glock in every category except for capacity, and the capacity will end up being light and fast not heavy and still fast. For street carry I would choose the Glock. I would choose the revolver for woods use with a heavier slug. As for the capacity issue being a deciding factor, ask yourself this. When the intention is to take a larger game animal, to include bears, with a handgun, do folks take some semi auto or do they take a single shot or revolver? Do you think a dangerous confrontation with wildlife is more likely by sheer chance while hiking or when you are intentionally seeking the animal and trying to kill it. At any rate, does anyone have any information at all regarding the life and death need for a high capacity firearm for hiking? Take it if you wish, probably no harm in it at all, but recognize the trade off you are making in relation to the intended use, which is about nil anyway. Even if the use was against a person you would be wholly unlikely to engage multiple drug crazed thugs in the deep woods on snowshoes. It's too cold for them and getting there is too much like work. They don't like cold or work.
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Old December 10, 2011, 11:49 AM   #8
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I am thinking you will not need the gun. If I wanted a gun and did not need one I would carry the lightest one that could do what I needed it to do when/ if I did need it.

In other words the Glock. But the revolver is fine too.
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Old December 10, 2011, 02:36 PM   #9
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" trying to decide if I should take my glock 32 in .357 sig or if I should stick with the 686 357 mag revolver..."

Would go with the S&W 686, cartridges with heavy solid (fmj or hard cast) bullets, such as 158gr S&B, or roll my own 180gr bullets behind a hot load of Hodgdon H110. That should handle the the 4-legged threats, not to mention the 2-legged crazys.

At close quarters, when it comes to a rough and tumble fight, the revolver trumps the semi-auto, they don't jam when you get a bear-hug, or that big cat has your skull in its mouth, just push that muzzle into their fur and keep pullin the trigger, and once you've emptied your wheelgun it doubles just fine as a heavy club.

Check your 6.
For 20 years the sea was my home, always recall the sun going down, and my trusty friend, a 1911 pistol, strapped to my side.
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Old December 10, 2011, 05:44 PM   #10
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I think you'll be fine with either. If you're going to run into a bear up here, it's going to be a black bear that's looking for handouts. You're not going to get a grizzly that wants a "you sandwich". just be cautious, they don't exactly sneak up on you, they almost narrate themselves as they walk.
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Old December 10, 2011, 07:23 PM   #11
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A sporter style rifle would make sense if you are going off the beaten track...handguns are primarily defensive weapons and compromised.
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Old December 10, 2011, 10:27 PM   #12
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A rifle would make sense but of the choices you mentioned, take the 357 with the heaviest solid tips you can find. 158's or 180's.
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Old December 10, 2011, 10:51 PM   #13
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Glock & Roll...

I agree with Seaman to an extent.
A large caliber revolver like a S&W Mountain Gun or Ruger AK snub(with a CT lasergrip) may be good, new pistol ammunition designs have improved greatly in the last 10-15 years.
The Glock line has been proven too in harsh conditions and is in use by AK State Troopers & many military forces in Europe(Germany, Austria, etc).

BTW; The Judge revolver I posted is the Raging Judge model for the .454 Casull, .45LC, .410.
I'd suggest having it plated or coated with Robar NP3+, Bearcoat or Black T.
It may help protect the sidearm & speed up cleaning.

ps; CT has a lasergrip for the Judge revolvers too but it may not fit the "Raging Bull" models.
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Old December 10, 2011, 11:27 PM   #14
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I agree with the .357 and the use of 158 gr JSP. Should be a great time.
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Old December 11, 2011, 02:31 PM   #15
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Flip a coin
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Old December 11, 2011, 11:28 PM   #16
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I would carry the 686 with 180-185 grain WFN style hardcast bullets. Second choice in bullets would be 158 grain SWC style. 125 grain bullets work better on humans than on large animals.
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colorado , winter carry , winter woods caliber

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