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357 magnum (rifle) for Bear #13643918 03/10/19
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moosemike Offline OP
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I just got a stainless Rossi 92 in 357 magnum that I really like and I'm eager to take it deer hunting. But with our Bear season overlapping with Deer I'm normally hunting both so I'm asking a two part question. First, is it enough out to 125 yards and second, what bullet and what grain?

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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13644131 03/10/19
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Dang. I just don't know. Interested to see what others have to say. I'm happy with my 30-06 for bear.

I'm sure someone here has clobbered bear with a 357, or even something smaller!

Regards, Guy

Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13644205 03/10/19
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Not something that I'd do, but tell us how it works out.


If you need Buffalo Bore you are using the wrong cartridge.
Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13644281 03/10/19
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Good rifle.
I have such a M92 also, but it is much older. Mine has taken deer and hogs. Lots of folks over on Leverguns.com shoot .357 rifles and recommend 158 - 180 grain bullets for big stuff; no hollow points if you need penetration.
That said, my wife shot a deer in the neck just forward of the shoulder with 140 grain JSP at 2200 fps and that left a 6 inch exit hole. Bears need a stronger bullet.


Mine shoots everything from 110 to 180 grain bullets accurately just so long it is fast. Super Vel 38 special 125 grains is the only .38 fast enough to stabilize.
Buffalo Bore 180 grain ammo shoots fine in mine and will shoot through most critters out to your specified range.

I used to hand load , but found that good factory ammo meets all my needs now. FWIW, a loaded .357 Mod 1892 makes a serious self defense weapon. Hollow points are OK then. smile.

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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13644519 03/10/19
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My Taylor's Trapper Skinner 1892 Clone in 357 mag, with 16" barrel has two loads: Hornady 158 grain XTP-FP with 16.2 grains for Lil Gun for 1760 FPS from the rifle, as my general purpose load for both rifle and revolver (about 1250 FPS from my 3" GP100). Or a Rim Rock 170 Grain Cast-GC LBT RNFP with the same 16.2 grains of Lil Gun for 1645 FPS, from my rifle only. Both use Starline Brass, CCI 550 SP mag primers, and COAL 1.580". Either will kill a deer or a small hog inside of 100 yards.

I've gone as high as 17.5 Grain of Lil Gun under the 170 gr Rim Rock for 1806 FPS, but I prefer the lighter load. However, if bear was on the menu I'd use the heavier load.


Last edited by Shadow; 03/10/19.
IC-A

Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13644746 03/10/19
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I hope that will a black bear.


Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13644825 03/10/19
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Bear[black?] with a .357 lever gun? Buffalo Bore 180gr Hard cast comes to mind. Oughta work.

Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: rifletom] #13644864 03/10/19
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Originally Posted by rifletom
Bear[black?] with a .357 lever gun? Buffalo Bore 180gr Hard cast comes to mind. Oughta work.


^^^This^^^

I’ve seen lots of feral hogs taken with that combo. And they are probably harder to kill & thicker skinned and harder to penetrate than a black bear.


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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: chlinstructor] #13644927 03/10/19
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You must just plop down and sit on them big ol' nuts a yours and wait for a bear to wander by! Holy smokes.

My luck I'd have a 357 rifle in my hand when a 500 pound chopping block head bear came down the trail I was parked on! No thanks!


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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645039 03/11/19
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A hunter killed a 679# boar this past season with a 357 magnum handgun in PA. So I am guessing your levergun will work. The question is though, is it optimal?

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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: Rob96] #13645065 03/11/19
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Originally Posted by Rob96
A hunter killed a 679# boar this past season with a 357 magnum handgun in PA. So I am guessing your levergun will work. The question is though, is it optimal?


I would say over bait or bayed by dogs its pretty dam close to optimal. Close range it isn't giving up much to anything. Now if it is spot and stalk where shots might be longer range I would say it is less than optimal for sure.


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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645115 03/11/19
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I do not consider a 357 adequate to hunt bears. Not saying it won't kill one. Bears are an animal that most of us won't shoot often. Bear bones are heavier that deer bones. Bear hide is thicker than deer hide. Bears tend to have a bunch of fat under the skin where I have hunted them. Bear hair mats with fat and blood and stops up wounds. Even well hit bears often dont bleed well. Bears don't have sharp hooves to make easily found tracks. Wounded bears can be unbelievably hard to track if you don't have snow.
A proper 357 bullet will probably penetrate deep enough to cause the bear to die. The problem in the places I hunt are finding the bear. If you are hound hunting and the bears don't run big, probably will work, but the dogs might get scratched up. If you live where bears get big and fat, a bigger gun should be used, in my opinion. You owe it to te bear and yourself to carry a bit more gun, again, in my opinion.

Bfly


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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645403 03/11/19
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Not my first choice, but since they've stopped making 180gr NPs, I'd go for the Swift A-Frames. Spendy though.


What fresh Hell is this?

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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645425 03/11/19
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I would and have shot black bears with a 357 mag......with hounds treed.....never a shot more than 75 feet.....180 gr. Hornady HP in the head.....

Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645429 03/11/19
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If it were over bait for northern bears I think it would work fine. You would likely get to pick your shot and a good hardcast is going to easily double lung a bear and leave a nice exit to boot. But the OP is in PA where he shouldn't be baiting and if its a bear you stumble over while deer hunting you may only get a very small time window for a shot on bear thats moving and a 357 isn't really optimum for a bad angle shot. Me id rather have a 30.30 with 170's for that kind of shot.


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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645462 03/11/19
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My 158 JSP Lil Gun load was doing 2050 mv in a Marlin. A 357 in a rifle is not the same as a handgun, far more. I would hesitate to drop a bear if I had a good load and could place my shot.

On Bear, I would choose a heavy hard cast bullet, A 41 or 44 using the same would be preferred in a lever, and there are better yet rounds for fast killing power. Black Bears might get big in PA.....but if I were out deer hunting and one came along I would not hesitate....again Right bullet, Right placement as in most hunting.

Study bear anatomy if you need to brush up on where best to hold to take out vitals. Good hunting.

Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645527 03/11/19
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Originally Posted by moosemike
I just got a stainless Rossi 92 in 357 magnum that I really like and I'm eager to take it deer hunting. But with our Bear season overlapping with Deer I'm normally hunting both so I'm asking a two part question. First, is it enough out to 125 yards and second, what bullet and what grain?

According to Hodgdon 1757 fps is the very best you can get with a 158 grain bullet. I can see .357 as a close in defensive round or a house gun, but why limit yourself to a short range round that doesn't come close to a .30-30? If it is the best rifle you have available I can see using it but otherwise, no. Of course I am biased because I only hunt deer and larger game with .30-06, .270W, or .308W class cartridges. We always have the possibility (probability) of large hogs which I imagine are as hard to kill as black bear.


"You win no crown of laurel for outrunning a jackass" - Martialis
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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13645559 03/11/19
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Think again:

Notes: Marlin Model 1894 .357 Mag. Cowboy Carbine with a 20-inch barrel used to test all loads. Starline cases and CCI 550 Small Pistol Magnum primers used throughout. (Rifle Issue #226 - July, 2006)

145 Winchester Silvertip hollowpoint Hodgdon Lil'Gun 20.0gr, 2,052fps

158 Hornady FP/XTP Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,971fps

158 Hornady HP/XTP Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,987fps

158 Sierra Jacketed Hollow Cavity Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,957fps

158 Nosler hollowpoint Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,988fps

158 Speer Gold Dot hollowpoint Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,929fps

158 Speer jacketed softpoint Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,944fps

158 Speer jacketed hollowpoint Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 1,972fps

156 RCBS 38-150-SWC cast Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 2,018fps

160 Cast Performance flatnose plain base Hodgdon Lil'Gun 19.0gr, 2,021fps

165 Lyman GC 358156 cast Hodgdon Lil'Gun 18.0gr, 1,974fps

173 Lyman 358429 cast Hodgdon Lil'Gun 17.5gr, 1,906fps

180 Cast Performance wide flatnose Hodgdon Lil'Gun 15.0gr, 1,790fps

Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: Shadow] #13645634 03/11/19
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As I said I can see it as a close in defensive round or a house gun. I wear a .357 magnum revolver when I hunt hogs, the idea being it is more effective if wading into brush looking for a hog that has hiked off after being shot. The reason it is more effective is the fast handling and aiming. .357 magnum has its place and I carry one most days and every day I travel away from home. An S&W 66


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Re: 357 magnum (rifle) for Bear [Re: moosemike] #13646106 03/11/19
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WOW by some accounts here I guess bowhunters shouldn't be shooting bears. Evidently there are armor plated bears running around. A .357 coming out of a rifle is going to create a lot more blunt force trauma and destruction to vitals than an arrow is. As I said I wouldn't use it on a spot and stalk hunt. But I haven't a single problem using one on baited or bayed bears. Hell I don't even have an issue with using a .357 out of a pistol. A bad shot is a bad shot no matter what you choose to use. Sure more power more bullet mass may save the day. Then again it may not. Shot placement, make a good shot no matter what you are using. Sometimes less is more, if it means you can shoot it better.


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