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Discussion Starter #1
hey guys im just wondering what you take on few calibers im lookin at... iu shoot a .300 mag now for deer and bear but i was thinking of buyin a gun just for bear.... i was lookin at .338mag .300 ultra mag .444 marlin .450 marlin .300weatherby mag
 

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No need for a big boomer for black bear, now if you are planning on hunting the browns or grizz's thats a different ballgame! I have carried my 7-08,30-06, 35 whelen (which is my personal favorite) and my 444.
 

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Those are some mighty big calibers for black bears, if that's what your asking about. I know my buddies dad used a .338 for his bull moose hunt. That's over kill for black bear is your askin me.
 

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Go with the .444 or .450 Marlin lever gun. You will need a short heavy rifle for when you are driving those laurel patches. Shots are usually under 100 yds.
 

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Can someone please explain how big guns "aren't needed" or "overkill" for.black bear???? Not all bear are under 200lbs...especially in PA...how many get killed over 500lbs in PA?? Its a decent enough percentage...

Ever skin and butcher a bear?? Ive done a cub...a true cub under 100lbs..the structure of it was amazing...the bone and hide is so much heavier than a deer...not to mention the fat...

I couldnt imagine what a 500+ pound bear...

Sure perfect shots mean a dead critter....but, hit the shoulder of a goodun with a light gun and bullet...someone will finish him off for you...

Bullet construction is huge...not only caliber....

If you are a serious bear hunter, buying a bear sized rifle would be a good move IMO..


Really comes down to selecting the rifle you are comfortable and then deciding what caliber you can get it in....levers are a league of their own for the.most part....remmy pumps are limited....i am a pump gun shooter..they fit my hunting style and shoulder like a gun should...i went with a 35 whelen shooting 225gr accubonds under a stiff charge...

Another perk of having a dedicated bear rifle is it is an excuse to buy a new rifle...more range time and practice..another rifle for deer should your primary rifle ever go down...

Id carry deer calibers if thats all i had and would load them with partitions or accubonds or other good bonded bullet...
 

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If you want some of the Ultimate Bear Medicine, look no further than a now, sadly, obsolete caliber in the Winchester .348. Not a belted magnum that rattles the teeth.

The late father-in-law got a Win lever action in that .348, that puppy pushes a 220 grain nugget of death an just the right speed for accuracy at bear distances and my gosh, shoot it in low light an FLAME shoots out the barrel.

And, when before she (was silly enough to) became Mrs. DFA, as a little ol' 105 pound high school cheerleader, she could put them all in the six-inch kill zone with this combination. It was surprisingly gentle, that big chunk of lead ate a lot of the recoil.

Too bad the world had to become fascinated with hyper velocities of those belted magnums, each and every animal that Win .348 ever was fired at wore a tag. And whatever it hit, that target knew it was hit, big time.

Sorry for the nostalgia, but that gun is great to shoulder and shoot with those open sights and lever action. On a deer sized target, it's coming off it's feet and flying sideways in the opposite direction.
 

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My bear gun used to be a .350 Rem Mag(which I think was made specifically for PA Bear). I have down sized to a .338 Federal. I feel you shoot shoot whayever caliber you are comfortable shooting accurately.
JMHO
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #11
thanks guys yeah its for pa black bear as i also want to go to canada soon for bear... i use my 300 mag with 180 ballistic tips but i want a dedicated gun thats why im lookin at another and yeah i wouldnt mind one of those levers i just wanted some option on calibers and i dont care what people say whats over kill its my choice
 

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While in my prior post I stated that a big boomer may not be needed, I will say that overkill is way underreated lol. Never will argue with anothers justification for buying another gun!
 

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Why does anyone want anything but a 30/06? You can load it for anything form chipmonks to killer whale to zombie invasion.
 

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500 Nitro Express for a big PA bear just in case you need to shoot through an 12" white oak on the way.

I used a 270 last year. After reading these posts I'll be scared to go in the woods with that pea shooter. Glad I didn't see one now.
 

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I got a new gun/caliber with bears in mind this past christmas and after seeing the holes it blew in the target at the range I cannot wait to give it a try on bears of any size, my guess is this old classic should do great for deer too with the correct bullet selection but for bears it should make it much harder for that hole to plug with fat. My choice was the tried and true....45/70 GOV'T
 

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Discussion Starter #18
thanks for the small caliber inputs.... i dont think any of them would be allowed on a brown bear hunt lmao..... and yeah 338 is what im leanin on or lever gun as i shot left handed...
 

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Discussion Starter #20
ok you do that.... i talked to outfitters that told me a min would be .300 which i have but i want some more bang another reason to add a new gun
 
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