One rifle only. What caliber?

I've heard:

.243 is fine for deer and below

.270 is fine for everything in North America

30.06 is fine for everything in North America and the most common hunting round

.308 is fine for everything in North America and because it's a military round, there's tons of ammo

 

Is all that true?  If so and I can only have one rifle, what should I get (and I do like the option of hunting any North American game)?

 

Thanks in advance.

i like the 308

30-06 is the best all around round

Personally 25-06 is my favorite caliber. It's not a very common caliber, so there is plenty of ammo on the shelves. It can take down an elk,deer, varmints etc...It is essentially a 30 caliber casing with a 20 caliber bullet, so that mo fracker shits and gets. It's a real flat shooter. I would want a bigger round for a moose, but if you made the shot, it may very well take down a moose. The FPS on that caliber is crazy pending the grain. The hydrostatic shock from that round fuks shit up.
So my rifle would be the 25-06.

308

22lr

where I'm at probably 243

Hunto's Huckleberries - where I'm at probably 243

I would recommend this too. I shot a bear a year ago with one and it didn't go more than 15 feet after being shot once

Aaron Becker -
Hunto's Huckleberries - where I'm at probably 243

I would recommend this too. I shot a bear a year ago with one and it didn't go more than 15 feet after being shot once
In australia the 243 is probably the best all round game caliber. It'll take all feral game except anything like camels or bulls which normal people rarely hunt anyway and will takedown most deer with proper placement. Phone Post 3.0

30-06 or 260 Rem

I've had alot of people down my son's .243  for deer hunting. Two days ago, he killed a buck and a doe with no problem. The went maybe 25 yards and fell. He had perfect shots to the point that when we gutted them, we saw the rip in the lungs. If you don't hit the deer right, however, a 243 could wound and you will have a long day tracking him. My son just happens to have a dead reckoning with that rifle. I pretty much agree with that list. 

me i'd go with a 30-06  if i only could have one rifle

 

or i'd get a shot gun and a set of these...

zealot66 -


I've had alot of people down my son's .243  for deer hunting. Two days ago, he killed a buck and a doe with no problem. The went maybe 25 yards and fell. He had perfect shots to the point that when we gutted them, we saw the rip in the lungs. If you don't hit the deer right, however, a 243 could wound and you will have a long day tracking him. My son just happens to have a dead reckoning with that rifle. I pretty much agree with that list. 

I have read quite a few posts on hunting forums about this. The 243 is capable but has a noticeable failure rate on deer. The old timers urge people to use a 25-06 instead or 260 or 7-08 even.

One guy put it best "if you use the 243 long enough you will make some great kills shots with it but it will also fail to do just that more than any hunter would approve of. Moving up from the 243 to 6mm or 25 will put the smaller cartidge into a shadow it will never come out of."

Something like that anyway. Phone Post 3.0

Trust - 


DId OP ever decide? 



I did.  I went with .270  Nothing really fancy, just a Savage Axis....but then I lost it in a freak boating accident    ;)



 

Stronghold - 
zealot66 -


I've had alot of people down my son's .243  for deer hunting. Two days ago, he killed a buck and a doe with no problem. The went maybe 25 yards and fell. He had perfect shots to the point that when we gutted them, we saw the rip in the lungs. If you don't hit the deer right, however, a 243 could wound and you will have a long day tracking him. My son just happens to have a dead reckoning with that rifle. I pretty much agree with that list. 

I have read quite a few posts on hunting forums about this. The 243 is capable but has a noticeable failure rate on deer. The old timers urge people to use a 25-06 instead or 260 or 7-08 even.

One guy put it best "if you use the 243 long enough you will make some great kills shots with it but it will also fail to do just that more than any hunter would approve of. Moving up from the 243 to 6mm or 25 will put the smaller cartidge into a shadow it will never come out of."

Something like that anyway. Phone Post 3.0

There's some truth to that, but it's mostly an old wives tale. If you do your job, the .243 will do its. The issue people generally run into is that they don't go shooting as often as they should, and then end up taking marginal shots because of it. So you end up with the woods being full of hunters who only put 2 or 3 rounds, sometimes fewer, per year. That's responsible for more wounded animals than incorrect cartridge selection. Old timers also often forget how far bullet technology has come in the last decade, and that what was true when they were growing up isn't anymore.

rkm456 - 
Stronghold - 
zealot66 -


I've had alot of people down my son's .243  for deer hunting. Two days ago, he killed a buck and a doe with no problem. The went maybe 25 yards and fell. He had perfect shots to the point that when we gutted them, we saw the rip in the lungs. If you don't hit the deer right, however, a 243 could wound and you will have a long day tracking him. My son just happens to have a dead reckoning with that rifle. I pretty much agree with that list. 

I have read quite a few posts on hunting forums about this. The 243 is capable but has a noticeable failure rate on deer. The old timers urge people to use a 25-06 instead or 260 or 7-08 even.

One guy put it best "if you use the 243 long enough you will make some great kills shots with it but it will also fail to do just that more than any hunter would approve of. Moving up from the 243 to 6mm or 25 will put the smaller cartidge into a shadow it will never come out of."

Something like that anyway. Phone Post 3.0

There's some truth to that, but it's mostly an old wives tale. If you do your job, the .243 will do its. The issue people generally run into is that they don't go shooting as often as they should, and then end up taking marginal shots because of it. So you end up with the woods being full of hunters who only put 2 or 3 rounds, sometimes fewer, per year. That's responsible for more wounded animals than incorrect cartridge selection. Old timers also often forget how far bullet technology has come in the last decade, and that what was true when they were growing up isn't anymore.



 think you nailed the whloe firearms question of what round, what gun, etc. If you have a reliable platform, that bullet goes where you aim. period. Especially under 50 yards for a pistol and 100 for a rifle. I'd say more with a rifle. I just did a combat carbine class, well two actually and the second day was distance out to 300 meters on steel plates.12x18 inches. My 25 meter zero with the .223/ 556 was perfect. I repeatedly hit the 300 meter with iron sights. Some of the guys on the course for ego sake would only use their scopes and I did better than some of those guys. But I had been shooting alot during that time. 



What is the most effective rifle/gun/bullet ? It's the one you can hit your target with. And you can't expect to take head shots on even a 20 yard real life situation unless you have practiced till you can't fail and with the adrenaline you probably will so torso shots are the important thing. 



People argue 9mm over 45. I guess the 9 mm is good enough for Deal Team 6 and Delta, why should i believe that it isn't as effective as a 45? 



People need to practice with their gun instead of arguing over what is the best because unless its smaller than a 9mm, it's probably going to tear a hole in somebody and kill them IF you can hit vital areas.



I'm finally taking my conceal and carry class this saturday. I am using my .22 pistol because I haven't decided on what model I am going to carry. The instructor said this was a perfectly sane idea and I've done several Carbine classes with him. let the ego go and go to the range.

zealot66 - "What is the most effective rifle/gun/bullet ? It's the one you can hit your target with."

A lot of this. There certainly are minimum calibers I personally would deem appropriate for certain types of game, and there is such a thing as overkill, but I would always take a smaller gun that I'm well practiced with over a larger one just because it's bigger; and the reality is someone's much more likely to shoot a gun with less recoil.

An acquaintance took 6 whitetails last year. He shoots a Benelli R1 in 30-06 which is a beautiful gun. The reason he shoots an autoloader though is that he rarely puts his game down with his first shot. Yes, he has put full magazines of 30-06 into whitetails on more than one occasion. He's also a firm believer that ".243 is a little light for deer"

270 is about perfect. Sad the gun went deep sea diving though. Phone Post 3.0

270
30-06
308

Are all great. I have a 270. You can find ammo for all of them easy.

Also 30-30. It has a ton of knock down power and the bullets are cheap and easy to find. The last deer I shot was with a 30-30 and it dropped so hard I thought I had missed it and it ran off or something. The grass and weeds were really high.

The PTO shaft on my bushhog is fucked up so I wasn't able to cut it.

I like the 308 (still have the same rifle I bought while in high school in 1981), however, I haven't hunted any game larger than hogs. It has done the job.

That being said, I think it would work on all North American game. I took my largest hog ever with a 223 when my 308 was in the shop. Not recommending that but it did the job. I also took a 163 lb doe with the 223 when I had loaned out the 308.