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Old 08-13-2008, 05:56 PM   #1
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Okay, here's the deal. Looking at buying a rifle mainly for white tails. I have a 12 ga. that I use for hunting right now & that's all I've ever hunted with. Mainly because I've hunted mostly wooded areas. The area that I hunt is a wildlife managment area & in has some areas that have been logged because Weirhauser owns parts & some parts are U.S. forrestry land. The logged areas would probably give me a shooting distance of no more than 300 yds. but maybe as short as 75 or 100 yds. The terrain is mostly rolling hills & in the bottoms of the hills they left the hardwoods which is why the shots wouldn't be more than 300 or so. The woods have a lot of under growth in most places but there are food plots that the wildlife, fish, & parks maintain where a shot of maybe 50 or 100 yds is possible. I figure that I can bring both a rifle & shotgun with me & get the best of both worlds. If I use a tree stand I may have a decent shot with a rifle through the trees... but not on the ground. So, since I'm new to centerfire rifles, is a .270 cal. too much gun for what & where I'll be shooting? I figure a .270 is also pretty good all around caliber if I ever get to hunt west of the Mississippi as well.

I appreciate any input.
Stay Frosty, Mike

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Old 08-13-2008, 07:29 PM   #2
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A .270 is an excellent all around caliber for North American game up to elk. Some would even consider it adequate for elk. By no stretch of the imagination is a .270 "too much".

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Old 08-13-2008, 07:59 PM   #3
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.270 is a great all around game cartridge, especially in North America. Very versatile. I think that, or maybe even the .243 would be a good choice, depending on the size of the animals in question.

I would be a little concerned about shooting meat at 50 or 75 yards with the .270, but it's certainly not going to blow a hole in the animal big enough to drive a truck through or anything. You wil definitely get some penetration though.

.270 is a good cartridge, it can be found in just about any sporting goods, or other type, of hunting store and the recoil isn't bad at all. You can reload it across a pretty broad spectrum if you were so inclined.

I notice that you mentioned Weyerhaeuser land, where abouts? Because it might not be their's much longer. My gal used to work there in HR for about two years, got out last year when the writing started to hit the wall. They are selling off just about everything. You favorite hunting land might become someone else's here in the not so distant future...

JD

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Old 08-13-2008, 08:23 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
.270 is a great all around game cartridge, especially in North America. Very versatile. I think that, or maybe even the .243 would be a good choice, depending on the size of the animals in question.

I would be a little concerned about shooting meat at 50 or 75 yards with the .270, but it's certainly not going to blow a hole in the animal big enough to drive a truck through or anything. You wil definitely get some penetration though.

.270 is a good cartridge, it can be found in just about any sporting goods, or other type, of hunting store and the recoil isn't bad at all. You can reload it across a pretty broad spectrum if you were so inclined.

I notice that you mentioned Weyerhaeuser land, where abouts? Because it might not be their's much longer. My gal used to work there in HR for about two years, got out last year when the writing started to hit the wall. They are selling off just about everything. You favorite hunting land might become someone else's here in the not so distant future...

JD
The place I hunt is in South Mississippi. It is part of the Little Biloxi Wildlife Management Area. It straddles both Harrison (south) & Stone (north) Counties with most of the Weyerhauser land in Harrison County.
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Old 08-13-2008, 08:26 PM   #5
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.... The area that I hunt is a wildlife management area & in has some areas that have been logged because Weyerhaeuser owns parts & some parts are U.S. forestry land. The logged areas would probably give me a shooting distance of no more than 300 yrds. but maybe as short as 75 or 100 yrds.
First get a rifle with, at least, a 24” barrel. (Stay away from anything that’s shorter; and, anything longer than 26” is a waste of good ordinance steel.) I’ve watched many a hunter hit low on long shots while using a short 16.5” - 18” barreled carbine.

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The terrain is mostly rolling hills & in the bottoms of the hills they left the hardwoods which is why the shots wouldn't be more than 300 or so. The woods have a lot of under growth in most places but there are food plots that the wildlife, fish, & parks maintain where a shot of maybe 50 or 100 yrds is possible.
OK, then, when using a rifle hold a little low on the close-in shots. When you have the time read,

THIS!

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I figure that I can bring both a rifle & shotgun with me & get the best of both worlds. If I use a tree stand I may have a decent shot with a rifle through the trees... but not on the ground. So, since I'm new to centerfire rifles, is a .270 cal. too much gun for what & where I'll be shooting? I figure a .270 is also pretty good all around caliber if I ever get to hunt west of the Mississippi as well.
Sounds great! However, in practice, I think you’ll find carrying two long arms to be a real nuisance. I always used to bring a slug gun and a centerfire rifle with me to deer camp. Whichever one I carried depended on where I intended to hunt that day. When I was out in the hardwoods, moving along ridge lines, I carried my Sako FinBear 30-06 with a 24” barrel. When I was down in the bottoms still hunting the edges of swamps, I carried my old Remington 870 slug gun.

A word about the 270 Winchester: It’s a great cartridge, shoots nice and flat, doesn’t always have the range, and won’t do a damned thing that a 30-06 can’t do better. When I was a young man I worked as a guide at a commercial Pennsylvania deer camp. We used to have all these affluent, fat bottomed, ‘city slickers’ show up with their fancy deluxe grade rifles in the trunks of their cars.

All arriving hunters had to demonstrate that their rifles were zeroed-in. More often than not, these rifles were scoped with the best of optics and so far out of zero that their first sight-in shots would be as much as 3 feet off in any direction! Naturally, none of these guys had a clue; and, it always fell to me to have the task of sighting-in these thoroughly screwed up rifles before we could turn the owners loose in the woods with their fancy artillery.

Now, don’t misunderstand. Some of these hunters were big tippers – That was the good part. The bad part was that by the third day of arrivals my shoulder was sooo …. sore from sighting-in everybody’s rifles that I (truly) didn’t feel like shooting for the rest of the season!

The rifles that used to annoy me the most were those damned 270’s! All the frigg ‘in kick of an 06 and little more than half the performance! Consequently, I have never sighted-in anyone’s 270 in my life that I didn’t think to myself; ‘Stupid jerk, you should have bought a 30-06.’

Almost 40 years later I haven’t changed my mind. If you’re going to carry that much rifle make it the right rifle: If you want a nice small caliber rifle that’ll work effectively out to 300 yards on deer-sized game look at the 243 Winchester. It won’t beat the Hell out of your shoulder; and, it’s based on exactly the same cartridge case as the: 270, 308, and 30-06 calibers.

My own personal favorite, ‘small rifle’ deer cartridge is the 6mm Remington – I love this cartridge and everything about it! It’ll do everything a 243 will do; only, it will do it better!

If you decide to go with a larger caliber hunting rifle I’d start with the excellent 25-06 Remington. It is an ideal round for long ranging shots at far off deer-sized game; but, now, you’re going to start noticing the kick. Bigger than this? I’d go straight to the 30-06 Winchester.

You’re going to need a decent scope. Personally, I’ve never used anything except Leupold scopes all of my life, and have never had a (good) reason to want or need anything else. My smallest hunting scopes are 4X; my largest are 3-9X variables. I’ve used much more powerful scopes; but, I’ve always felt that the disadvantages outweighed the advantages. 12X is as high as I prefer to go.

As for Range? I can't remember a hunting shot that I ever made at greater than 9X magnification. Most have, probably, been around 4X. If it’s within 400 yards, there’s a 99% chance that it’s going to be dinner. (Been this way all my life!)

I know the legendary Jack O’Conner loved the 270 Winchester; but, as far as this old deer camp guide is concerned, it’ll never be more than a genuine pain in the neck. If I’ve got to suffer that kind of recoil, give me a 30-06 every time!

Good luck to you!
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Old 08-13-2008, 10:43 PM   #6
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Sounds great! However, in practice, I think you’ll find carrying two long arms to be a real nuisance.
I should clarify. I would bring both along in the truck. I would only carry the gun that would suit the terrain I chose to hunt. I should have made that clear from the start. The land I hunt is open to the public so any one that paid for the user permit can hunt it. That makes where you can hunt first come first served. I'm usually there pretty early but sometimes someone beats me to the spot I want to hunt. This would give me the versatility to not just hunt the woods.
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Old 08-14-2008, 11:40 AM   #7
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.... That makes where you can hunt first come first served. I'm usually there pretty early but sometimes someone beats me to the spot I want to hunt. This would give me the versatility to not just hunt the woods.
Which is the exact same reason, 'Why' I, also, carried two different long arms to deer camp every winter. The camp I used backed onto state gamelands. (a very large one) I used to get sick and tired of other hunters either wandering into or deliberately coming onto turf I'd carefully scouted out weeks in advance and always arrived at very early in the morning.

One of two things would frequently happen: You'd have to talk to the other guy(s) which would finish your chances for that morning; or, you'd have to sweat being mistaken for a deer and getting shot as you walked in before dawn. (I could tell you a great story!)

After my 3rd close call, I swore off anything that had to do with hunting state gameland in Pennsylvania - Where, according to state records, over 200 hunters a year get injured in some sort of firearms accident. (Most aren't fatal.) With the exception of the public ranges, I haven't set foot (away from stream side or road) on public gamelands in more than 25 years.

Do let us know what rifle you decide to go with.
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Old 08-14-2008, 01:32 PM   #8
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[QUOTE][If you decide to go with a larger caliber hunting rifle I’d start with the excellent 25-06 Remington./QUOTE]
What's the availability of this round? Is it going to be as readily available as a .243 or .270win?

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The rifles that used to annoy me the most were those damned 270’s! All the frigg ‘in kick of an 06 and little more than half the performance!
Compared to a 12 ga. with 00 Buck how bad is the recoil? I can hanled 00 buck pretty well... but then you don't have to zero in a shotgun. ( and I ain't shootin' skeet with 00 Buck, but target rounds & small game shot I can shoot all day).
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Old 08-14-2008, 02:03 PM   #9
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[quote=firehammer;36123]

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[If you decide to go with a larger caliber hunting rifle I’d start with the excellent 25-06 Remington.
What's the availability of this round? Is it going to be as readily available as a .243 or .270win?

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Compared to a 12 ga. with 00 Buck how bad is the recoil? I can hanled 00 buck pretty well... but then you don't have to zero in a shotgun. ( and I ain't shootin' skeet with 00 Buck, but target rounds & small game shot I can shoot all day).
.25-06 is a little more rare than either the .243 or the .270, but it's not frog's teeth or anything. You should be able to find some factory stuff at most good sized sporting good shops. I put together some good reloads for mine. I have a .25-06 that I rolled up for my grandfather before he passed. He used to hunt the U.P. in Mighigan all the time. It would have been a great gun for the size deer they have there.

I personally don't have a problem with the recoil on the .270. I'm not a small guy, and I built mine with a Bell & Carlson stock, a Pachmayer Decelerator pad, along with some other custom parts. I don't know the exact weight, but I am guessing it's not more than 10 or 12 pounds, loaded with optics. It's a hunting style field gun. Semi thin barrel, but not the pencil thin variants that are popular on "hike in" guns.

I wouldn't consider the .270 to be punishing, personally. You mileage may vary.

I would consider a .300 Win Mag to be punishing. But, as with any firearm, there are several things that a gunsmith can do to tame the recoil for you and get down to acceptable limits should you so choose.

JD
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Old 08-14-2008, 03:01 PM   #10
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The .25-06 is smaller than the .270. Both are offspring of the .30-06 parent case. The .270 could have been easily called a .27-06. The .25-06 is a very good cartridge also. It is perhaps a bit more difficult to find than the .270 or .243, but is certainly not scarce. With 117-120 grain bullets it is more than adequate for whitetails and pronghorn. Probably too light for elk and mulies.

My 25 year old Remington 700 ADL in .25-06 seems to not have a preference for ammo. It shoots anything well. I can make handloads with 117 or 120 grain, BTHP or FB Spitzer, any headstamp case (.25-06, .270, .280, .30-06 commercial/military) and it shoots them all into the same sub minute hole. Every one I have every known with a .25-06 says the same thing. "You can't load a bad round for the .25-06".

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