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Q:
My close friend and hunting buddy has found the love of hunting mule deer and elk in Colorado. He can only afford to own one hunting rifle for both species and has a total budget of $800-$1100 (rifle and scope). He is leaning towards a .270 or 30.06, but has an open mind for other calibers. He does not like heavy recoil (who does) has he wants some range time between seasons. He is looking for suggestions for rifle and caliber. Most shots are between 150-300 yards. I've suggested the following: Browning XBolt .270 w/Leupold 3x9x40 VXII Marlin XL7 25-06/.270/30.06 and spend more on optics (but he prefers a detachable magazine) Your input is highly appreciated, as what counts most is feedback from actual users.

from Bull Elk on 10.29.12

Answers (9)

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from Steven James Athay wrote 9 weeks 3 days ago

I use Remington 700 in 30.o6, with a Leupold scope. Yes, arguably the most common hunting rifle out there, but for good reason. I shoot 165 grain Nosler Partitions for deer, and 185 grain Partitions for elk. last elk and Muley i dropped were from 250+ yards, and neither one went more than 30 yards.

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from Bull Elk wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

DSMbirddog

I'm doing well. Back from my Colorado hunt and already wish I was headed back. Taking my new bird dog "Timmy"...hey, my wife named him, out for his first pheasant hunt Monday. Will be sending the new Brittany puppy "Posey" to bird training in early January.

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from Unseenkiller wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Winchester .300 mag with Luepold 3-9x40

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from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

25-06 I haven't seen you out here for a while. How have you been?

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from mesarich wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

I would recommend the Weatherby Vanguard in .300 Weatherby magnum. It will drop an elk in its tracks, and the recoil to me is not much harder then a 30-06. Mine was under 800 dollars and that was with a good scope on it.

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from 25-06 guy wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Savage makes one hell of a rifle, he needs to shoot what he can handle with the recoil. If its to much he won't shoot well. The scope thing, go with the best you can buy, you get what you pay for, take a cheap scope and a higher end one like a Leupold or Nikkon at dusk or on a foggy morning and you will see. It would suck to go on a hunt of a lifetime and the scope fog or not be clear at crunch time. JMO

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from JM wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

I think he would be better off getting a higher end rifle (Browning X-Bolt, Winchester Model 70, Remington 700) chambered in 7mm Rem Mag or .30-06 and buying one of the lower priced Leupold scopes. For shots under 300 yards a really high end scope isn't necessary.
-Plus if your friend ever wishes to upgrade to a better scope in the future he would already have a great rifle he was familiar with.

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from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

A 270 or 30-06 would be fine. But I would also check out the 7mm Rem mag and the 300 Win mag. I have Savage Mod 116 with Accutrigger and Accustock that I set up with a Leupold VX-2 and Warne mounts and rings for less than $1100. Others to consider are the T/C bolt actions and the Weatherby Vanguards

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from 4everAutumn wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

I have two rifles that I might suggest. One is a Savage Model 11 in .300 WSM that I bought new as a package gun for less than 500.00. It has a Simmons 8pt 3-9X40 scope that I was going to upgrade, but it has done so well that I see no reason to switch it out at this point. Not the prettiest gun, but if I miss with it, it isn’t the rifle’s problem. I have shot a nice Colorado bull and several white tail deer with it. The other rifle I would suggest is a Remington model 700 BDL. (Has the detachable mag.) It is chambered in 7mm Mag. and I topped it with a Leupold Vari X III 3.5X10-50. I've shot whitetail deer with this rifle and with the right bullet weight; I wouldn’t hesitate to hunt elk with it. It is one of the most accurate rifles I own.

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from 4everAutumn wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

I have two rifles that I might suggest. One is a Savage Model 11 in .300 WSM that I bought new as a package gun for less than 500.00. It has a Simmons 8pt 3-9X40 scope that I was going to upgrade, but it has done so well that I see no reason to switch it out at this point. Not the prettiest gun, but if I miss with it, it isn’t the rifle’s problem. I have shot a nice Colorado bull and several white tail deer with it. The other rifle I would suggest is a Remington model 700 BDL. (Has the detachable mag.) It is chambered in 7mm Mag. and I topped it with a Leupold Vari X III 3.5X10-50. I've shot whitetail deer with this rifle and with the right bullet weight; I wouldn’t hesitate to hunt elk with it. It is one of the most accurate rifles I own.

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from JM wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

I think he would be better off getting a higher end rifle (Browning X-Bolt, Winchester Model 70, Remington 700) chambered in 7mm Rem Mag or .30-06 and buying one of the lower priced Leupold scopes. For shots under 300 yards a really high end scope isn't necessary.
-Plus if your friend ever wishes to upgrade to a better scope in the future he would already have a great rifle he was familiar with.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 25-06 guy wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Savage makes one hell of a rifle, he needs to shoot what he can handle with the recoil. If its to much he won't shoot well. The scope thing, go with the best you can buy, you get what you pay for, take a cheap scope and a higher end one like a Leupold or Nikkon at dusk or on a foggy morning and you will see. It would suck to go on a hunt of a lifetime and the scope fog or not be clear at crunch time. JMO

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

A 270 or 30-06 would be fine. But I would also check out the 7mm Rem mag and the 300 Win mag. I have Savage Mod 116 with Accutrigger and Accustock that I set up with a Leupold VX-2 and Warne mounts and rings for less than $1100. Others to consider are the T/C bolt actions and the Weatherby Vanguards

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from mesarich wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

I would recommend the Weatherby Vanguard in .300 Weatherby magnum. It will drop an elk in its tracks, and the recoil to me is not much harder then a 30-06. Mine was under 800 dollars and that was with a good scope on it.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

25-06 I haven't seen you out here for a while. How have you been?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Unseenkiller wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Winchester .300 mag with Luepold 3-9x40

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from Bull Elk wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

DSMbirddog

I'm doing well. Back from my Colorado hunt and already wish I was headed back. Taking my new bird dog "Timmy"...hey, my wife named him, out for his first pheasant hunt Monday. Will be sending the new Brittany puppy "Posey" to bird training in early January.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Steven James Athay wrote 9 weeks 3 days ago

I use Remington 700 in 30.o6, with a Leupold scope. Yes, arguably the most common hunting rifle out there, but for good reason. I shoot 165 grain Nosler Partitions for deer, and 185 grain Partitions for elk. last elk and Muley i dropped were from 250+ yards, and neither one went more than 30 yards.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

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