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#3032249 - 05/13/09 What Is It About 300 Pound Deer?
BobinNH Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 30724
I know most deer don't run this big,but still they exist over a pretty wide range of whitetail and mule deer country. What's curious is that these are the one's that seem to cause so much concern for some folks when it comes to rifles and cartridges...judging from some posts here,and from many conversations with other hunters,they seem to be concerned that these animals are really "tough".....

I get in these conversations with some traveling hunters headed "out West",and especially Central Canada who think things like 300 RUM's etc are absolutely essential for deer in this weight class.Up there,I've had guys armed with 338 RUM's look at me seriously and tell me that using anything smaller than a 180 gr bullet at 3100 on these 300 pound deer,and you might as well be using a fly-swatter.

Can anyone explain this? Even a 300 pound deer is not a particularly large animal.....is this the threshhold in weight for moving to a big belted 30 for some guys?
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#3032274 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
Odessa Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 5416
Loc: Downeast NC
Does it take more killing power to put down a 300 lb deer than a 800 pound elk? 300 lb is not that big as big game standards go; maybe it is just a reason (and who really needs one!) to justify purchasing a new rig in a higher power cartridge than the hunter already owns? For 300 lb deer I would probably choose a .270 WIN, but that is because it is already my favorite. On the other hand I know my .338 WIN MAG would be "enough gun" to get the job done as well. Maybe hunting loonies are a lot like rifle loonies and just like tinkering with different stuff.
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#3032285 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: Odessa]
M1Garand Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 08/11/06
Posts: 1134
Loc: Michigan
Deer, like many other animals, have become armor plated, haven't you realized that yet? But seriously, I think a lot can be attributed to some writers (are you listening Lee Hoots?). I've read articles that lead you to believe that if you hunt deer with less then a 300 magnum of some sort, you're undergunned. There's other reasons no doubt, but more and more I see articles implying you need something that large with a premium bullet. I've always been of the stance that when using good cartridges, a C & C is tough to beat. I've been using them as long as I've been hunting. It's all I've ever needed and never had a deer I've hit where I've wanted run more than a few steps and I've shot some pretty big deer.

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#3032286 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
270guy Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/07
Posts: 231
Loc: N.H.
Bob - I don't expect to ever shoot a 300 lb. deer, but just in case, I always hunt deer with my elk rifle, a .270 winchester.

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#3032412 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: 270guy]
battue Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 01/11/07
Posts: 11210
Loc: outside the burgh
Have an acquaintance that goes to Saskatchewan/Alberta for whitetails. After the first trip he came back and ordered a .300 Jarrett. When asked why, he said many in his camp thought a .300WM is minimum for the big deer you may come across up that way. No way you could convince him of anything other. I think it becomes a going with the herd mentality.

That rifle with a muzzle brake is the most obnoxious rifle I have ever been around.
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#3032431 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: battue]
PredHunter Offline
Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 214
There is rampant obesity in america's deer herd. Just as with children they spend too much time on the XBox and eating junk food. \:D

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#3032473 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
mathman Online   content
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 06/03/04
Posts: 22822
I don't know about other folks, but I would take the possibility of a 300 pound deer seriously. I'd go so far as considering 165 grain bullets instead of the usual 150 for my 300 Savage.

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#3032516 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: battue]
BobinNH Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 30724
battue: Glad I'm not the only one that runs into that "mind set"; ......I wonder sometimes where this mentality came from?
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#3032539 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
Mule Deer Online   content
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 07/24/01
Posts: 37029
Loc: Banana Belt, Montana
The first time I hunted deer in Canada was in Alberta. Of the six hunters in camp I brought the smallest rifle, a .280 Remington and handloads with 150-grain Nosler Partitions. The other guys all had various 7mm and .300 magnums, including one who brought a wildcat .300 that just about duplicated the .300 Weatherby.

I killed my buck (a 300-pound mule deer) with one shot at 300 yards. The guy who brought the .300 wildcat didn't get a deer, because he couldn't shoot straight. (His guide, by the way, used a .25-06 on those 300-pound deer and wonder why the guy had brought a .300 magnum. "Are we hunting elephants?" he asked me.)

The odd thing is that today 1/2" accuracy is also required to kill those 300-pound deer. Somehow as they get bigger they get harder to hit!
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#3032564 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: Mule Deer]
7 STW Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 12/04/05
Posts: 12133
Seen it lots myself..It always tends to be the more expensive the hunt, the bigger the gun is.
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#3032577 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
CLB Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 12/10/08
Posts: 5089
Loc: CT
I'm not sure if it's the published word or hunting shows on TV, but it appears as if many people are moving away from "potentially" having to blood trail a shot deer and subscribing more to the infamous "bang flop" theory. I've seen this before in camps where a guy shows up each year with a bigger cartridge and the funny thing is he had not shot anything with the one he had last year. Inexperience has a lot to do with it I think. Unless you shoot Texas whitetail.....then you NEED a bigger gun. <grin>

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#3032611 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
Tom264 Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 12/19/06
Posts: 21643
Loc: above you.....
My brother took one down with archery equipment this last year.......oops!
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#3032683 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: Tom264]
BobinNH Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 30724
Tom: How can you kill a big deer with a stick and string?It shouldn't have happened! \:\)

The big deer/big rifle mind set seems more obvious the further north you go.....

Been to Saskatchewan a few times, where many hunts are conducted from tree stand sor ground blinds and shooting distances are at under 150 yards.The number of 26" barreled 300 Whatevers is enough to give you pause....
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#3032685 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
rost495 Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 01/05/05
Posts: 38961
Loc: La Grange, TX
Course I didnt' NEED to use my 50 bmg on deer either, but its been fun....
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#3032748 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: rost495]
mudhen Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 05/30/05
Posts: 10002
Loc: Boot Heel of New Mexico
The biggest deer I have seen taken at long range (423 yards lasered after the shot) was a western Nebraska mule deer that probably did weigh in excess of 300 lbs. alive. My younger daughter shot this animal with about a half-hour of daylight remaining on the last day of a hard Sandhills hunt. She used a 7mm-08 with a 120 grain Nosler Solid Base bullet. The deer was hit a bit farther back than we would have liked, but the bullet still got both lungs and exited. The buck walked about 10-15 yards and collapsed before she could get off another shot.

Another big-bodied Wyoming mule deer taken with one shot by one of my hunting companions back in the 1960s was killed at over 400 yards with a .243 with a 100 grain Nosler Partition.

Conversely, I have helped trail many, many wounded deer (both whitetails and mulies) shot with various high powered magnums from the 7mm Rem Mag up. More than I would have liked could not be recovered...


Edited by mudhen (05/13/09)
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#3032789 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
Tom264 Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 12/19/06
Posts: 21643
Loc: above you.....
 Originally Posted By: BobinNH
Tom: How can you kill a big deer with a stick and string?It shouldn't have happened! \:\)
I dont know, maybe luck?!
 Originally Posted By: BobinNH
The number of 26" barreled 300 Whatevers is enough to give you pause....
I can only imagine...I guess I would be undergunned with my little .308 \:\(
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#3032892 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
Eremicus Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 03/01/01
Posts: 18881
Loc: Placerville,CA,USA
The guys that I've met that thought the .300 magnums where necessary all seem to have a hunting "method" called getting the buck up at whatever yardage, dumping a box of cartriages in your hat and then shooting at him until you ran out of cartriages or you got him.
Yeah, I can see where that might be needed.... E

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#3032952 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
Oldelkhunter Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 09/28/04
Posts: 9144
Loc: North Carolina
 Quote:
I get in these conversations with some traveling hunters headed "out West",and especially Central Canada who think things like 300 RUM's etc are absolutely essential for deer in this weight class.Up there,I've had guys armed with 338 RUM's look at me seriously and tell me that using anything smaller than a 180 gr bullet at 3100 on these 300 pound deer,and you might as well be using a fly-swatter.


Once they get their retinas re-attached they will probably use something more mundane the top end being a 7 Rem mag and the bottom a 243. If you watch some of these TV hunting shows they are only using what most of the "pushers" on these shows suggest.

I guess no Canadian whitetail prior to 1998 was ever recovered after being shot in a vital zone.
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#3033112 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: Oldelkhunter]
BobinNH Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 30724
The guys that seem to do well with the bigger guns are the one's that use them for everything,and shoot a lot.Most of these guys seem to be experienced and know they aren't necessary. But they tend to be one-rifle hunters who know their rifles well.

It's the inexperienced one's that think they need a big rifle for a big deer that seem to have a lot of problems.Like the guy JB ran into in Alberta.
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#3033163 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
northern_dave Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 09/29/04
Posts: 31038
Loc: Minnesota
zackly!!

I've got big guns & little guns, sometimes i carry a big gun for fun when i know very well it's "overkill"


my biggest problem is with finding a 300# deer!! WTF??

I aint shot one i can honestly say dressed at 200 yet!! \:\(

have I shot 180 lb deer with a 300 wby? yep, but mostly with a .243, .308, 30-06 etc.
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#3033166 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: BobinNH]
JGRaider Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 08/23/05
Posts: 14849
Loc: W. Texas
So true Bob. I believe I've told this story before (sorry), but it involved a "crack shot" hunter from Houston that I helped guide for big sandhills muleys in TX. He showed up with a 30-378 Weatherby and a box of bullets. The short version is he shot close to all of his bullets, 17 shots or so over a 3 day period at deer from 60-350 yards, all complete misses. To say he flinched would be an understatement. My nephew (14 at the time)wound up killing one of those 160" bucks with his 7-08 and 140 gr Remy green box core-lokts at 200yards, stone cold dead. The rancher made the guy leave the premises, feeling he was a hazard to have around. So much for the crack shot from Houston.

Even though I personally shoot a 7mag, mainly because I'm very confident with it, I feel the 7-08 with a good bullet is the perfect deer killing machine....any deer, anywhere in North America.


Edited by JGRaider (05/13/09)
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#3033176 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: northern_dave]
tzone Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 02/23/04
Posts: 30943
Loc: MN
The big question is...have you shot and little deer with dat tree huntret? I know you have some pics somewhere.

Most of the silly deer I shoot, seem to die with the 30-06, .308, or .257 Roberts. Silly me.

A true treehundred pounder, I'd love the chance to shoot one. Closest so far is 227# dressed.
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#3033184 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: tzone]
northern_dave Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 09/29/04
Posts: 31038
Loc: Minnesota
well, yeah I have.

cause all my deers are little compared to a tree hunnerd pownder.
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#3033204 - 05/13/09 Re: What Is It About 300 Pound Deer? [Re: northern_dave]
ingwe Online   content
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 12/20/08
Posts: 57964
Loc: Southwestern Montucky
I've only seen one bona fide 300 pounder ( and I didn't get to see him through MY scope) but my partner shot him a number of years ago...hangin' weight,no hide, guts, head, at 3 Forks that day was #239
The rifle? A .22-250....
Ingwe
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