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Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? #14189101 10/09/19
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Jim_Knight Offline OP
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Hello sir, I am curious as to what has worked the best (or you suggest for your hunters) in a 300 Win Mag ( or others) to stop or "help stop" an aggressive bear or one that charged? 200gr and up soft nose or big Mono? Thank you.

300 BP

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14190149 10/09/19
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Anyone is welcome to chime in guys! smile

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14190291 10/09/19
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Mule Deer Offline
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Phil is probably very busy guiding bear and moose hunters, but I know from our conversations that his penetration tests showed the 220-grain Nosler Partition penetrated deeper than any other .30 caliber bullet he tried--and that included a bunch. I also know that's the bullet he used when folowing up (and stopping) the last wounded brown bear he killed with a .30-06, a few years ago.

He carried the .30-06 because the client he guided shot very well during sight-in--and Phil liked the particular .30-06. Unfortunately, during the actual hunt, the client did not shoot well, and Phil had to follow up the bear (a big one, per usual in his guiding). The 220's worked fine, but Phil expressed some desire for his .458 afterwards.


“Montana seems to me to be what a small boy would think Texas is like from hearing Texans.”
John Steinbeck
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14190625 10/09/19
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Godogs57 Offline
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North Fork...


You only live once, but...if you do it right, once is enough.
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14190666 10/09/19
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Pahntr760 Offline
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I believe I will give 200 gr Speer HotCor a try in such an application.

Alpha

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Godogs57] #14190698 10/09/19
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Mule Deer Offline
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Godogs and Pahntr,

Are your recommendations based on your experiences with those bullets on aggressive bears?


“Montana seems to me to be what a small boy would think Texas is like from hearing Texans.”
John Steinbeck
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Mule Deer] #14190702 10/09/19
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moosemike Offline
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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Godogs and Pahntr,

Are your recommendations based on your experiences with those bullets on aggressive bears?


Of course not. This is the Campfire after all. laugh


Open chokes hide a multitude of sins.
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Mule Deer] #14190739 10/09/19
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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Godogs and Pahntr,

Are your recommendations based on your experiences with those bullets on aggressive bears?



No mine is not, never had the experience. I will be moving to the last frontier next year and just may be in such a situation, I figure. I have seen how well Speer perform in various critters in my time in Utah, "punching above their weight" type comments are what I have heard/seen. It was just a suggestion after all.

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Mule Deer] #14190978 10/09/19
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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Phil is probably very busy guiding bear and moose hunters, but I know from our conversations that his penetration tests showed the 220-grain Nosler Partition penetrated deeper than any other .30 caliber bullet he tried--and that included a bunch. I also know that's the bullet he used when folowing up (and stopping) the last wounded brown bear he killed with a .30-06, a few years ago.

He carried the .30-06 because the client he guided shot very well during sight-in--and Phil liked the particular .30-06. Unfortunately, during the actual hunt, the client did not shoot well, and Phil had to follow up the bear (a big one, per usual in his guiding). The 220's worked fine, but Phil expressed some desire for his .458 afterwards.


He also speaks very highly of the 200 gr partition.


Originally Posted by raybass
I try to stick with the basics, they do so well. Nothing fancy mind you, just plain jane will get it done with style.

Originally Posted by Pharmseller
You want to see an animal drop right now? Shoot him in the ear hole.
P


BSA
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14191037 10/09/19
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Forget the Speer although it would probably work fine go with a 200-220 Nosler, Woodleigh, North Fork, Kodiak, Swift, Trophy Bonded, or similar. When you are close enough to not only smell the bear but taste it in the back of your mouth nothing will feel adequate. The hair would always bristle on the back of my neck when I was close to big bears. When I was guiding (fly fishing) I carried a 7RM with 175 Noslers but I wished for a .375 several times. Fortunately I never had to use it even with bears as close as ten feet away. Just think about an animal that can take down a full grown moose, run faster than a horse, and has the intelligence close to a dogs, they are formidable.

In fact if bear are going to be more than an occasional thing I would recommend a good medium bore from 338 to 400 with the 375s being about ideal.

By African reckoning true "stopping" cartridges don't start til about .458 caliber.

Last edited by Tejano; 10/09/19.

"When you disarm the people, you commence to offend them and show that you distrust them either through cowardice or lack of confidence, and both of these opinions generate hatred." Niccolo Machiavelli
Bravo

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14191090 10/09/19
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I've been in three situations where bear have came after hunters and this is what I have to say about it! You better spend a lot more time practicing shooting offhand at targets than the effort you put into picking a bullet.

One situation was a Black bear that had been hit on the highway and when a friend jumped out to put it out of its misery the bear came after him. He shot the bear thru the lungs twice as it attempted to get him! Don't be stupid and shoot a bear thru the lungs because if you do your a dumbass! It doesn't kill them right away. In fact it angered the bear more and as it was going for him again only much more aggressively I dispatched of the bear with one shot behind the ear with a 12 gauge shotgun.

Second bear was with an older military friend Chuck who had served in the special forces and a fella named Steve Hodgdon who is related to the family who makes hodgdon gun powder. Both men were experienced hunters however when we went into the brush after a Black bear that had been shot thru both front shoulders the bear was still alive and extremely aggressive when we walked up on him. The bear couldn't move very well because both front shoulders had been shattered but it was very much alive and very much in a rage. At this point both Chuck and Steve emptied a 45 and a 357 mag at the bear. When the bear continued to aggress I shot the bear in the head with a 270 and it immediately stopped moving. The problem this time had been that both Chuck and Steve although rather experienced admitted to not having practiced much at all in there later years. Apon inspection we did find one 38 caliber bullet hole thru the ear! 11 shots were fired at about 10 feet away. There pistols were emptied what if the bear could move a bit better and what if I hadn't been there. The moral is if you want to hunt bear don't rely on the fact that you used to shoot a lot years ago!

Third bear another black bear was caused by a Rottweiler taking after it, pissing the bear off, and than running back behind me and my brother! In this instance the younger brother put one shot thru the head of the bear at less than 10 feet with his 44 mag and dropped it in its tracks! I was very thankful that day that the thousands of rounds of practice and playing with pistols paid off and was thankful he was packing.

Every year hunters are killed by bears and while I haven't encountered a grizzly I hear they are more dangerous and agressive than black bear which in my experience are very dangerous. Many of those hunters are carrying ammo with a bullet that could easily kill a bear had the hunter been prepared and practiced! I won't hunt bear without making damn sure I can shoot and am ready because IME it can mean your life and not just from what most people get all giddy about......"the big browns" The determining factor that killed all three of these bears I have talked about was not the size of the weapon it was simply shooting the bear in the CNS, the head in these three instances, and hitting where the shot was intended to hit.

Your mileage may vary but this is the experiences I have had with bears so thought I would relate them


Good bullets properly placed always work, but not everyone knows what good bullets are, or can reliably place them in the field
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14191447 10/10/19
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I'm a huge TSX/TTSX fan and I would use them more heavier than 180 grain



I got banned on another web site for a debate that happened on this site. That's a first
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14191515 10/10/19
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Jim_Knight Offline OP
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Thanks guys. I figure it would have to be big enough to hold together, as hitting the body , maybe breaking it down, is going to be more likely than a head shot. I'm in agreement with being a practiced shot, and I too don't trust a black bear ( the ones where I hunt are usually sows with cubs) at all. Its a big area that ranchers use for calving, so lots of predators around, from bobcat to teeth popping mama bears! ha

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Trystan] #14191536 10/10/19
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Originally Posted by Trystan
I've been in three situations where bear have came after hunters and this is what I have to say about it! You better spend a lot more time practicing shooting offhand at targets than the effort you put into picking a bullet.

Every year hunters are killed by bears and while I haven't encountered a grizzly I hear they are more dangerous and agressive than black bear which in my experience are very dangerous. Many of those hunters are carrying ammo with a bullet that could easily kill a bear had the hunter been prepared and practiced! I won't hunt bear without making damn sure I can shoot and am ready because IME it can mean your life and not just from what most people get all giddy about......"the big browns" The determining factor that killed all three of these bears I have talked about was not the size of the weapon it was simply shooting the bear in the CNS, the head in these three instances, and hitting where the shot was intended to hit.

Your mileage may vary but this is the experiences I have had with bears so thought I would relate them


Trystan - good stories/examples - yup it's pretty easy to wind up too doggone close to a bear! I like your emphasis on quick marksmanship rather than on a particular cartridge/bullet combo.

Regards, Guy

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: jwp475] #14192847 10/10/19
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7point62mag Offline
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Originally Posted by jwp475

I'm a huge TSX/TTSX fan and I would use them more heavier than 180 grain


I'm going after a large (for this area) Black Bear this year. No guiding or anything, but I am trusting the 180 TTSX to do the job. I carry Barnes TAC-XP in my pistols exclusively, but never tried their rifle bullets. I'm usually a Partition user, but I really want to try the monos. This bear is 300-350 lbs, and has wreaked havoc on apple and peach tree around here. Even took out a few stands of bees. I look forward to testing the Barnes.

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: moosemike] #14195036 10/11/19
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Originally Posted by moosemike
Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Godogs and Pahntr,

Are your recommendations based on your experiences with those bullets on aggressive bears?


Of course not. This is the Campfire after all. laugh


It was a solicitation for opinions so I responded. I use NF's on Elk and have had excellent results every time. They smash through tough shoulders and do a wonderful job with respect to terminal performance. I figured their excellent reputation was well known. For the record...a few of the elk were aggressive if that matters.


You only live once, but...if you do it right, once is enough.
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14195173 10/11/19
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No personal experience. But there have been many people who have conducted these tests and they all came to the same conclusion. I've read comments by Phil Shoemaker here and read a good article by Finn Aagaard related to his bullet testing on African game. There used to be a good article online conducted by the Alaska F&G concerning their recommendation for large bear protection that I can no longer find. The 200 or 220 gr Partition in either 30-06 or 300 magnum gave the deepest penetration of any 30 caliber tested.

Aagaard and the Alaska F&G also tested many other cartridges. The 30-06 and 300 mag with those bullets tied in penetration and beat every other bullet and cartridge tested smaller than 375 mag. That included 338 WM, 35 Whelen, and 45-70. The Alaska F&G study recommended 30-06 with 200 or 220 gr bullets as the best choice for most people for bear defense. The 375 and larger magnum cartridges beat 30-06, but they felt the recoil could be an issue for some people and they felt the 30-06 was adequate.


Most people don't really want the truth.

They just want constant reassurance that what they believe is the truth.
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: JMR40] #14195483 10/11/19
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Originally Posted by JMR40
No personal experience. But there have been many people who have conducted these tests and they all came to the same conclusion. I've read comments by Phil Shoemaker here and read a good article by Finn Aagaard related to his bullet testing on African game. There used to be a good article online conducted by the Alaska F&G concerning their recommendation for large bear protection that I can no longer find. The 200 or 220 gr Partition in either 30-06 or 300 magnum gave the deepest penetration of any 30 caliber tested.

Aagaard and the Alaska F&G also tested many other cartridges. The 30-06 and 300 mag with those bullets tied in penetration and beat every other bullet and cartridge tested smaller than 375 mag. That included 338 WM, 35 Whelen, and 45-70. The Alaska F&G study recommended 30-06 with 200 or 220 gr bullets as the best choice for most people for bear defense. The 375 and larger magnum cartridges beat 30-06, but they felt the recoil could be an issue for some people and they felt the 30-06 was adequate.


Another reason to shoot the gun you hunt with. A lot.

375 recoil is only bad in a poorly designed rifle or if you haven’t shot it a lot.

You need to learn how. By doing it.

Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14195522 10/11/19
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Quote
Another reason to shoot the gun you hunt with. A lot.


Worth repeating!

Bullet placement in that situation is going to matter way more than the actual bullet used.


Arcus Venator
Re: Mr Shoemaker- 300 Mag Bear Stopping Bullet? [Re: Jim_Knight] #14195546 10/11/19
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Mule Deer Offline
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It would be great if Phil actually had the time to respond here, but as I noted earlier this is the Alaskan bear season and he's out there, beyond the reach of the Internet, dealing with some of the biggest bears on earth.

I hesitate to put words in his mouth, but we've talked about this a lot--partly because Eileen and I have spent time up there with him, fishing and hunting birds during the peak of the salmon spawning season, when his part of the Alaskan Peninsula has (according to biologists) the highest concentration of brown bears in Alaska. In fact, we had some interesting encounters with brown bears during our time together--as have I with both browns and grizzlies elsewhere.

Based on all that, I suspect he would comment that those who suggest certain "stopping" bullets (and cartridges) for bears are FOS.

Or at the very least, have limited experence.


“Montana seems to me to be what a small boy would think Texas is like from hearing Texans.”
John Steinbeck
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