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another good matchup from the larger calibers. which one would you all like to have in the cabinet??

338 Winchester Mag vs. 35 Whelen

In my opinion, if I were to choose 1 rifle to cover anything I might ever encounter, it very well might be a 338 Win Mag. but the 'ol Whelen is sure attractive


In this matchup, case capacity and ballistics favor the 338 WM. while the recoil can be a bit much for some. the Whelen is a little easier on the shoulder, The 35 Whelen is going to kick...but not as much as a .338 Mag and not as much as a .300 Win Mag....perhaps as much as the 7mm Mag....but what an upgrade. 2600 for a 250 grain bullet out of an '06 case
 

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I'm not a huge magnum fan, but of the magnums, the 338 WM is about the most sensible to me.

It's a bit stout for PA, but if you hunt something that justifies a magnum, the magnums smaller than the 338 WM are too easily imitated by other "standard" cartridges. When you need enough of a difference to get outside of the 30-06-ish arena, and need to step up to a magnum, you might as well skip the rest and go to the 338.

Besides, if I'm going to stay with the 30-06 parent case, it's going to be (and IS !) a 338-06 for me.
 

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Ahhh moose cartridges. Now yer talkin'. I picked the .35 Whelen cause I want to get one for moose whenever I get drawn again. I shot one with the .30-06 and wasn't impressed and one with the .450 Marlin and lost an insane amount of meat so I'm figuring something halfway in between is exactly what I'm looking for.
 

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I went with the Whelen as well. I love big bore guns and I would have to say that for Pennsylvania woods hunting the .35 Whelen is about as good as it gets in my mind. I am planning on hopefully securing a Remington custom shop mountain rifle in this caliber when I get home.
 

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Buddy shot a Moose in Maine last year with a 35 Whelen Improved.
 

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I have seen several elk shot with the 338 WM and most fell at the shot. All were well placed shots. Elk hunting is all I have used this caliber for so I do find it limited in the lower US. My rifle is heavy but somewhat tames the recoil. If I had to choose between the two I feel the .338 WM is the only way to go.
 

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i barreled 98 mauser for 35 whelen when comparing it to 338 win magnum 250 300 fps differance like comparing a 6mm to a 243 win count in the cost of ammo. belted case compared to a resized 30-06 i'll take a whelen any day. and have a chance to really wear out a big bore high power barrel.
 

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speculate that the 358 win in a savage 99 was a great elk rifle. the 35 whelen still having a following through out the 50's to present day then remington making it legit in 90 or so. i had a buddy that owned a 700 classic i loaded and shot a lot of stuff through that rifle it was fun. i got the bug my self. i always passed on the 338.
 

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I got a .338 because I had a great deal on it. Still have not fired it but since I hunt with a .300 Win believe I will love the big bang. My brother-in-law used to own one and he didn't mind the recoil He is a bit smaller than me instature too by about 50 pounds LOL.
 

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Ballistics of the .338 are much better but, the lower recoil on the .35 made it my pick. Magnum power from a non belted case, easier to reload, and brass lasts longer. The.35 is all you would need for any North American game. Personally, I would split the difference and go .338-06.
 

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I would take the 338 Win Mag over the 35 Whelen any day. First and foremost, the 35 Whelen is a short range cartridge compared to the 338 Win Mag. I have harvested deer with both, a Coues Whitetail was taken with the 338 Win Mag at 365 yds in Southern Arizona. That shot was far beyond the 35 Whelen capabilities. Ranges like that are far and few between in the Pennsylvania Woods. So, basically it would be just personal perference to the Penn's Woods hunter who's ranges are nowhere near the aforementioned harvest.
 

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.338 WM for Coues? Didn't you get the memo that you don't have to beat your shoulder up to kill those little deer?
 

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I own (2) 35 whelen rifles. A remington 7600 and a custom mauser. I own (1) 338 win mag. A Rem 700. When I am hunting in PA or Colorado. It is the whelen that goes with me 99% of the time. I have never found it lacking. The 35 whelen has been my favorite hunting round for a long time.
 

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Today I went with the 338. Tomorrow things could possible change. I don't really have any reason to own either of them at the time being, but not knowing what I could get into I like the ability to shoot a little further with the 338.

Plus the 338 is a little easier to find factory ammo. With large caliber guns I find it just easier and cheaper to just buy factory ammo for the amount that I shoot them. I was going to buy the reloading stuff for my 300 WSM, and decided to wait till I burned up the remaining bullets I have for it. Till I bought the dies, bullets, powder, Etc, Etc I would have had a lot of $$$$ invested. I still have 6 rounds in the first box I bought for it, and have another box waiting to go. That was 3 years ago.
 

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As stated earlier, the .338 Win Mag shoots a little flatter, but just how far do you normally shoot, and is the extra distance even within your field shooting capability. Field shooting over a quick rest, is not like shooting off the bench at the range.

To me, the best of the .35 Whelen is brought out by handloading. JMHO I own two .35 Whelens, and that is my go to cartridge when hunting in Alaska and some of the Lower 48.
 

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Arizona Hunter said:
If you have ever hunted Coues Deer you would know range or reach is important since one can see for miles in the arid Southwest.


I've seen Coues deer but haven't hunted them. A 25-06 would seem to make more sense.
 

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moosemike said:
Arizona Hunter said:
If you have ever hunted Coues Deer you would know range or reach is important since one can see for miles in the arid Southwest.


I've seen Coues deer but haven't hunted them. A 25-06 would seem to make more sense.
Not when that isn't an option.


Remember, we're talking 35 Whelen or 338 Win Mag in this matchup.
 

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If I were limited to one caliber for the remainder of my hunting here in Alaska as well as the Lower 48, it would have to be the .35 Whelen. I can use a 280 gr. cast bullet for just about everything, and I have the option of going to jacketed bullets. The 285 gr. jacketed bullet is my favorite, but I have 180 gr. bullets on hand to load for deer and pig hunting in the Lower 48.
 

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I killed a big bull moose and a bull elk with the 35 whelen...........both pushing 300 yds..........killed cleanly and without excess recoil. I havent carried it now for many hunts, guess I need to book another moose hunt! HONEY.............??
 
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