Guns Rifles

Dangerous Game Calibers: What Cartridge Do You Choose?

John B. Snow Avatar

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I’ve just arrived in Alaska, heading to the Togiak Wildlife Refuge to chase interior grizzlies with my friend (and renowned bear hunter) Linda Powell.

Linda handles the PR for Mossberg and we’re using the first dangerous game offering Mossberg has ever produced: the Patriot rifle in .375 Ruger.

The .375 Ruger is a cartridge of recent vintage that was developed in conjunction with Hornaday using next-generation powders that allow for greater bullet velocities without creating excessive pressures.

From a 20-inch barrel, the .375 Ruger duplicates the performance of the .375 H&H, the most widely used dangerous-game cartridge of all time, and does so in a long-action (as opposed to magnum-length) receiver.

This leap into modernity is a bit of a change for me. Up to this point, all my dangerous game hunting has been done with much more traditional cartridges, two in particular: the .416 Rigby and the .375 H&H.

I’ve faced elephants and Cape buffalo with the .416 Rigby in Africa, and have used the .375 H&H on Alaskan bear in the past. Because of their history, and their proven track record, I find it hard to switch gears to a more modern dangerous game cartridge, but I have no doubt the .375 Ruger will work just fine.

If you were facing down a charging bundle of clawed, tusked, or fanged fury, what would your go-to cartridge be?