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50 Best Hunting Rifles of the Past 10 Years

50 Best Hunting Rifles of the Past 10 Years

Shooting Editor John Snow picks his favorite hunting rifles of the decade.
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from Dianne Owens wrote 34 weeks 16 hours ago

Hey there, a really nice top 50 you have here. Really impressed with the low end ones. Thks a lot for sharing. By the way, you can check this site for rifle scopes in case you need one. www.bestar15scope.org

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from venomel wrote 1 year 25 weeks ago

check this site for some fine hunting rifles
federalfirearmslicenseffl.com

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Josh Giannino wrote 1 year 40 weeks ago

extremely pleased to see a marlin xlr gun in this! my 1895xlr is the best rifle ive ever had, and my friend loves his mxlr 450 marlin, great lever guns, no one makes one like a marlin!

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gerard Orsouw wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

winchester for number one !
why is Marlin 336XLR soooo high its one of the best rifles in the list -.-

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ed Nine wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I still believe the best rifle of ANY decade is and always will be the Winchester Model 70 in 30.06 Springfield.It is still the Riflemans Rifle regardless of what new rifles my come down the pike.
Would be nice if you would mention the '70 some time.

Ed Nine
375 Poindexter Lane
Lexington,S.C.29072
ednine@earthlink.net

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kiko wrote 2 years 18 weeks ago

Im surprised to see that a lot of budget rifles having better accuracy that the top dollar guns. I have a Wetherby Vanguard in 7mm-08 that is giving about .5"-3/4" MOA with over the counter ammo. Consistant with the .257 wetherby in the article. Savage accuracy is also exellent.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from MIKEWOOD wrote 2 years 24 weeks ago

in this list of best guns of the last 10 years it is interesting to see so many 100 year old Mauser 98 patern guns and three lever actions, a falling block. the only truly modern gun in the bunch is the Remington R-15 and it's a 40 year old design. The AR platform in 6.8 and 300BLK both show promise as deer guns. with that asside there are so many grocery getting guns i would have hoped for more variety and no mention of the beloved TC or H&R break barrels? this seems more a list of the last hundred years than the last ten.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM1993 wrote 2 years 26 weeks ago

Couple rifle's on the list I didnt expect/Couple I expected would be on the list that werent. Overall a pretty good top 50 though.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Rick Bear wrote 2 years 29 weeks ago

I hunt with a stick. A bonafide natural forest made tree branch. It is fun and effective for the wild life hunting life style. Shooting a rifle is easy, way too easy. I prefer to go Caveman in the wild and out smart the beast. People in the United States should know that provincial villages and mountain tribes in Central and South America still use primitive cost-free sticks to hunt wild game.Accordingly dogs are used to sniff out the prey.In the mountains of Latin Americas ther is no grocery store.The only protein for rural folks is wild game meat.The fat of the land.Hunters in the United States rely more on their rifles with scopes than their mind,failing to use the natural tools of the forest and mountains. When I hunt it is for food never for a trophy on the wall.Respect your food.Wild Game won't always be there in quantity.Remember the American Buffalo use to roam free in grand quantities.Bolt-Action rifles are a privilege to use.One shot One kill.Long distance a piece of cake.No sweat. Next time try running down any piece of wild game and you'll learn quickly you cannot out run it or tackle it to the ground. You have to out smart it. It is suppose to be a dumb animal and you the Human Man a super-smart creature.People Still use sticks and rocks to hunt whatever size game animals is in there local forest. It is a true fact of life old and new.The neanderthalish stick and rock are a mighty tool in the right hands.Let us not forget our hunting roots.Respect my Stick is all I am saying!!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Atinkerer wrote 2 years 32 weeks ago

I seem to remember a firearms company called Winchester. Has anyone else heard of them?

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from rlwviking wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I am curious why out of 50 rifle's, not one mention of any semi-auto's for big game hunting. Why?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jeff Brecht wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

johnson4x4 I guess no one from OL reads these comments. Otherwise, you should have had an answer to your question in less than 9 weeks! I think that is supposed to be a 0.803 group for the Savage Arms M11FHNS. See:
http://www.outdoorlife.com/photos/gallery/guns/rifles/2009/07/rifle-test...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from johnson4x4 wrote 2 years 47 weeks ago

Is the info on the Savage Arms M11FHNS (2009) correct? (pic 31) That is one jagged hole if so. I love to see how the savages are kicking that high dollar guns' butts.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ronald D. Weddle wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

There is NOTHING wrong with using a semiauto rifle such as the R-15 for hunting. Just because the action is semiauto does not mean one is careless with shot selection or placement. I hunt with a variety of weapons from bow, flintlock rifle, caplock rifle, caplock shotgun, pump shotgun, single action revolver, single shot rifle, lever action rifles, bolt action rifles, and semiauto rifle. ALL are fun to use and it is rare to ever use a second shot. I don't yet have a "black" rifle, but I hope to acquire one and have every intention of hunting with it.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from marksman wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

It's pretty simple. When companies send you high dollar rifles to review and often times keep in your personal inventory its very easy to give them a good review and overlook many other fine firearms that "don't make the cut". The "donated" hunts that these get to be used also help sway the decisions.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kody wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

I was counting off the rifles I own or have owned in the past that gained mention within John Snow's list of favourites. I see that he appreciates the mauser action rifles. The Remington of that style as well as several CZ rifles received preferential treatment and I am in agreement in this respect. While some may complain there are high end guns beyond the means of many they are within Mr. Snow's means and he assesses them relative to all the rest. I would say he balances his assessment well as the Savages and a Steven's rifle gained high praise. So. the list provides a wide range in prices that has something for everyone. In addition, he has an eye for the new competition in the rifle business and gives them fair treatment. I enjoy learning about the latest in the rifle business.

Thank you Mr. Snow

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kodi73 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

@ thins28 Do you only hunt with a single shot, breach loading rifle? IF NOT, "you need an autoloader you need to be at the range a little more and learn to kill with one shot." The availablity of multiple rounds nor the method they are loaded gives no one a bad name. Attitude, lack of practice, and unethical behavior do.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kodi73 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

@thins28 There is nothing at all ethically or morally wrong with hunting with an Autoloading rifle. If you only think hunting should be done with a knife, spear, or rock, you may have a point, but EVERY other mechanical or technological advancement has allowed the hunter to gain an advantage. Now if they start offering heat-seaking bullets that will draw the line for me. Do you only hunt with a breach loading single shot rifle?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from thins28 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

So when did an automatic like the Remington R-15 become a hunting rifle? It is this kind of gun that gives any kind of hunting varmit or otherwise a bad name. If you need an autoloader you need to be at the range a little more and learn to kill with one shot. So I start giving the person who made this list a very low score. JMHO

-5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ted Greene wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

I'm pretty disappointed that the icon didn't make a list of 50 guns. My icon in .308 never fails to outshoot those fancy "cool barrel" benchrest guns at the range. And when it comes to fit and finish, it doesn't get much better. I think it was a sad oversight. I know you can't fit em all but to put some $3700 rifle in there that most folks will never be able to hunt with over this reasonably priced tack driver is a mistake.

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Post a Comment (200 characters or less)

from Kodi73 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

@thins28 There is nothing at all ethically or morally wrong with hunting with an Autoloading rifle. If you only think hunting should be done with a knife, spear, or rock, you may have a point, but EVERY other mechanical or technological advancement has allowed the hunter to gain an advantage. Now if they start offering heat-seaking bullets that will draw the line for me. Do you only hunt with a breach loading single shot rifle?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kody wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

I was counting off the rifles I own or have owned in the past that gained mention within John Snow's list of favourites. I see that he appreciates the mauser action rifles. The Remington of that style as well as several CZ rifles received preferential treatment and I am in agreement in this respect. While some may complain there are high end guns beyond the means of many they are within Mr. Snow's means and he assesses them relative to all the rest. I would say he balances his assessment well as the Savages and a Steven's rifle gained high praise. So. the list provides a wide range in prices that has something for everyone. In addition, he has an eye for the new competition in the rifle business and gives them fair treatment. I enjoy learning about the latest in the rifle business.

Thank you Mr. Snow

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from marksman wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

It's pretty simple. When companies send you high dollar rifles to review and often times keep in your personal inventory its very easy to give them a good review and overlook many other fine firearms that "don't make the cut". The "donated" hunts that these get to be used also help sway the decisions.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ronald D. Weddle wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

There is NOTHING wrong with using a semiauto rifle such as the R-15 for hunting. Just because the action is semiauto does not mean one is careless with shot selection or placement. I hunt with a variety of weapons from bow, flintlock rifle, caplock rifle, caplock shotgun, pump shotgun, single action revolver, single shot rifle, lever action rifles, bolt action rifles, and semiauto rifle. ALL are fun to use and it is rare to ever use a second shot. I don't yet have a "black" rifle, but I hope to acquire one and have every intention of hunting with it.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from johnson4x4 wrote 2 years 47 weeks ago

Is the info on the Savage Arms M11FHNS (2009) correct? (pic 31) That is one jagged hole if so. I love to see how the savages are kicking that high dollar guns' butts.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jeff Brecht wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

johnson4x4 I guess no one from OL reads these comments. Otherwise, you should have had an answer to your question in less than 9 weeks! I think that is supposed to be a 0.803 group for the Savage Arms M11FHNS. See:
http://www.outdoorlife.com/photos/gallery/guns/rifles/2009/07/rifle-test...

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Atinkerer wrote 2 years 32 weeks ago

I seem to remember a firearms company called Winchester. Has anyone else heard of them?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Rick Bear wrote 2 years 29 weeks ago

I hunt with a stick. A bonafide natural forest made tree branch. It is fun and effective for the wild life hunting life style. Shooting a rifle is easy, way too easy. I prefer to go Caveman in the wild and out smart the beast. People in the United States should know that provincial villages and mountain tribes in Central and South America still use primitive cost-free sticks to hunt wild game.Accordingly dogs are used to sniff out the prey.In the mountains of Latin Americas ther is no grocery store.The only protein for rural folks is wild game meat.The fat of the land.Hunters in the United States rely more on their rifles with scopes than their mind,failing to use the natural tools of the forest and mountains. When I hunt it is for food never for a trophy on the wall.Respect your food.Wild Game won't always be there in quantity.Remember the American Buffalo use to roam free in grand quantities.Bolt-Action rifles are a privilege to use.One shot One kill.Long distance a piece of cake.No sweat. Next time try running down any piece of wild game and you'll learn quickly you cannot out run it or tackle it to the ground. You have to out smart it. It is suppose to be a dumb animal and you the Human Man a super-smart creature.People Still use sticks and rocks to hunt whatever size game animals is in there local forest. It is a true fact of life old and new.The neanderthalish stick and rock are a mighty tool in the right hands.Let us not forget our hunting roots.Respect my Stick is all I am saying!!!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM1993 wrote 2 years 26 weeks ago

Couple rifle's on the list I didnt expect/Couple I expected would be on the list that werent. Overall a pretty good top 50 though.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ed Nine wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I still believe the best rifle of ANY decade is and always will be the Winchester Model 70 in 30.06 Springfield.It is still the Riflemans Rifle regardless of what new rifles my come down the pike.
Would be nice if you would mention the '70 some time.

Ed Nine
375 Poindexter Lane
Lexington,S.C.29072
ednine@earthlink.net

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gerard Orsouw wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

winchester for number one !
why is Marlin 336XLR soooo high its one of the best rifles in the list -.-

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from venomel wrote 1 year 25 weeks ago

check this site for some fine hunting rifles
federalfirearmslicenseffl.com

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dianne Owens wrote 34 weeks 16 hours ago

Hey there, a really nice top 50 you have here. Really impressed with the low end ones. Thks a lot for sharing. By the way, you can check this site for rifle scopes in case you need one. www.bestar15scope.org

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ted Greene wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

I'm pretty disappointed that the icon didn't make a list of 50 guns. My icon in .308 never fails to outshoot those fancy "cool barrel" benchrest guns at the range. And when it comes to fit and finish, it doesn't get much better. I think it was a sad oversight. I know you can't fit em all but to put some $3700 rifle in there that most folks will never be able to hunt with over this reasonably priced tack driver is a mistake.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kodi73 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

@ thins28 Do you only hunt with a single shot, breach loading rifle? IF NOT, "you need an autoloader you need to be at the range a little more and learn to kill with one shot." The availablity of multiple rounds nor the method they are loaded gives no one a bad name. Attitude, lack of practice, and unethical behavior do.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from rlwviking wrote 2 years 35 weeks ago

I am curious why out of 50 rifle's, not one mention of any semi-auto's for big game hunting. Why?

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Kiko wrote 2 years 18 weeks ago

Im surprised to see that a lot of budget rifles having better accuracy that the top dollar guns. I have a Wetherby Vanguard in 7mm-08 that is giving about .5"-3/4" MOA with over the counter ammo. Consistant with the .257 wetherby in the article. Savage accuracy is also exellent.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from MIKEWOOD wrote 2 years 24 weeks ago

in this list of best guns of the last 10 years it is interesting to see so many 100 year old Mauser 98 patern guns and three lever actions, a falling block. the only truly modern gun in the bunch is the Remington R-15 and it's a 40 year old design. The AR platform in 6.8 and 300BLK both show promise as deer guns. with that asside there are so many grocery getting guns i would have hoped for more variety and no mention of the beloved TC or H&R break barrels? this seems more a list of the last hundred years than the last ten.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Josh Giannino wrote 1 year 40 weeks ago

extremely pleased to see a marlin xlr gun in this! my 1895xlr is the best rifle ive ever had, and my friend loves his mxlr 450 marlin, great lever guns, no one makes one like a marlin!

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from thins28 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

So when did an automatic like the Remington R-15 become a hunting rifle? It is this kind of gun that gives any kind of hunting varmit or otherwise a bad name. If you need an autoloader you need to be at the range a little more and learn to kill with one shot. So I start giving the person who made this list a very low score. JMHO

-5 Good Comment? | | Report

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