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April 05, 2013
March Madness: .30-06 Wins the Long-Range Deer Cartridge Championship
By Dave Hurteau
With almost 5,000 votes, I have to make the call.
It won. Again.
And that’s about all I can say about it.
The Elmer Fudds of the world have spoken
Wow, I never realized that there are that many people that shoot and are that ignorant about long range calibers, good grief.
In the words of Charlie Brown...arrrggghhhhh!
'06 must have been managed by Obama's campaign folks....madness indeed.
ACORN and the Black Panthers must have controlled the votes because the 30-06 isn't the best long range gun.
i was surprized to not see see the 30-06 face off against the .308. face it these are popularity contest. first maybe start explain why one shouldn't win over another, second do something not so cut and dry next year, like camo patterns. lol
Who woulda` thought the old `06 would live on in the hunting records for so many years?!
I am extremely surprised! I thought more people would have voted for the more popular "everybody knows are accurate" rounds like .308.
I guess if you have a vote, and a winner, then that's it eh? It's not like the 25-06 actually got more votes but those that voted from Florida voted another way and maybe instead of counting the votes we better let some five folks who like the 06 decide who ought to be the best cartridge. Is it?
I swear if they did a sweet sixteen of dangerous game rifles the GD 06 would win.
Most of the voters must know their capacity and ability. The 30-06 is all most of us need to kill at ranges that are long for HUNTING. Like 200 yards in the East, maybe more in the west for deer. Most people don't have the time or money to shoot further with confidence. Plus its a different type of hunting to shoot further that most hunters don't do. Just my dumb opinion but you need to be as close as possible and use enough weapon to not disrespect the animal.
I knew it!!
Wow, I guess the "Whats the best rifle?" crowd voted in force.
As I've said before the 30/06 is a great round but it's not a better long range rifle than many of the rounds listed in the original brackets. This bracket has been a popularity contest from the beginning. The 30/06 should have never made it past it's bout with the 7mm.
Just another example of how people hear what they want to hear, not what is actually said.
What the question really was: What's the best long range deer hunting cartridge?
What they read: What's the cartridge you're most comfortable with?
Can't help but feel that 95% of those who voted 30-06 never shoot at anything but a 100 yard range.
Why wouldn't the 30-06 win? Sales figures have shown, for more years than I've been alive, that 30-06 ammunition outsells everything else by a wide margin. Common tells me that, If people weren't killing stuff with it, the caliber would stop selling. At any ethical hunting range, I'd be willing to bet that any member of the deer family can't tell the difference in dying from any of those sixteen cartridges. I've killed a lot of deer with a lot of the cartridges on that list and none tasted any better than another because of which bullet brought it down. Having said that, I'm probably one of the few hunters on this continent who has never owned a 30-06.
That is the worst response i have readd to date. Sales figures and taste have nothing to do with how the 30/06 performs at long range. Clearly you haven't grasped the concept of this bracket... Its not about the deer telling the difference. It is about the shooter telling the difference. If you lob a 45/70 405 grain bullet at a whitetail which stands 300 yards from the shooter it will kill it. what will your hold over be???? Now, if you shoot the same deer in the same scenario but you are using a 257 weatherby which send a 117 gr bullet 3300 feet per second what will your hold over be? there is the difference! both deer are dead and taste the same however one round performs much better than the other at 300 yards. think man!
I'm still fuming that my favorite .270wsm lost so early?
It is a shame the Remington big 7 did not hang in there. The 7mm has better B.C. and with the new VLD bullets even more so.
Although i have some long range capable guns, in the northeast i have never shot a deer or bear over 150yds.
I t really isn't the end of the world that the 30-06 won, folks. Of course in reality some 6.5 or 7mm should have, but it's only a minor mistake, in the greater scheme of things.
From us 30.06 owners. Ppssssssslltt nah nah nah nah : )~
They should re-work the whole thing: Have several real ballistics "experts" vote the same brackets weekly until arriving at a winner. We readers would benefit from reading the weekly comments of WHY the "experts" voted the way they did. It would be more informative/interesting and less of a popularity contest...My wife's idea.
Hmmm... the ballistics chart says.....
Screw the charts.
I guess the next poll should be 'whats considered long range?'
The ignorant among us have spoken again. Is that a surprise considering the pisspoor shape our country is in at the hands of ill-informed voters?
The .30-06 is probably one of the best all around deer rifles out there, but it dang sure isn't the "long range champ". How do I know? I own two of them and a couple of real long range rifles that are not '06 anything! To each their own...
The next poll will be "What is the best squirrel rifle ?" And the winner is the 30-06. Makes just about as much sense.
i have a sneaky suspicion that if there was a sweet sixteen of best duck guns, if you snuck a .30-06 in, it would probably beat out a super black eagle in the championship.
if there was a poll for the best varmint gun people would pick the 30-06. 30-06s are good, but they are not the answer to everything.
who cares if it was a popularity contest or not! the subscribers were asked about what their FAVORITE long range deer cartridge was and this is the end result. yes the .308 was up there as well as the ..30-06. guess what? its because they are reliable, easy to find, cheap to buy, and stood the test of time. yes the .300 and the .338 are amazing at 400 and 500 yards but that is not HUNTING!!!! AWESOME JOB FOR THE .30-06!!!!
I feel about the 30-06 just about the way I feel about the .270. I would rather have a sister in the whore house than a brother that owned either one.
And as Si Roberson from the Duck Commander would say "That's a fact Jack".
Dave, I felt the same way when Obama was voted in for a second term.
Lovin all the people crying on here like this matters
its called "for fun" for a reason.
You're going to ignore the fact that long range shooters and hunters are in our sport too? that they are a valuable ally, that will support your right to hunt, regardless of your view on them? That because you cannot do something, you wish to restrict the rights of others? Sounds mighty PETA-ish to me.
I've gone 30 feet from Grizzlies that could paste me. I've seen cougar prints wider than my thick hand, seen the spurt of speed put on by a coyote in his tracks. I've tracked elk, moose and whitetail across some nasty terrain, felt the first snows of Canadian winter freeze the hairs of my beard. I've humped tent over thousands of vertical feet, 30 kilometers at a stretch, at near 300 pounds and 7000 feet above sea level. I've done so with perionoidal cysts, immune system suppression, flu, near pneumonia, rolled and sprained ankles, all the while not missing a workout at the gym during the week. What was I carrying while this was happening? The equipment for the OTHER 3 hunters in our group, and watching my young cousin take his first steps as a hunter. I've done it up 45 degree slopes, down the same too. Hell, I've seen the same flash of red-brown against the snow that means I've been spotted. I've felt the thunder of my heart against my ribs as I stared down the sight at a decent buck. I then dragged 260 pounds of the most glorious meat out, by myself, over terrain that would make a lumberjack weep.
To say I'm not a hunter because I train to shoot ethically past 400 yards is bogus. Because, in truth, I'm more of a hunter than you could ever be.
Sincerely, the guy who would peg deer at 4k with a .408 Cheytac if I could afford one
PS, look up the definition of "hunt" in a dictionary. I'd rather kill clean at 500 than go home because I wouldn't commit to learn a skill out of mistrust and ignorance. :)
Not surprised. The 30-06 is an amazingly versatile cartridge; just not a very good long range cartridge.
The term "long range" was not defined and therefore means different things to different people. To most deer hunters I have met, 150 yards is considered long range and the 30-06 is fine for that. I shoot a very accurate 30-06 and 400 yards is the limit of my deer shots with that rifle. However, I have never taken such a long deer shot with that rifle because it is sinfully slow.
That is why I never carry a 30-06 on the prairie where deer are often running flat out and shots might just be much longer. I normally use a 25-06 and a .257 Wby would be fine too where shooting will be limited to about 500 yards. This seems to be considered very long range by most deer hunters. I'm very happy with my .300 Dakota (most similar to the .300 Win in this contest). for shots out to 1000 yards and I am here to tell you that there is no comparison with a 30-06 at that range. My 30-06 stays in the safe on these shots for dead certain.
Like fng, I have trained for a long lifetime to be able to shoot accurately in all conditions that I might encounter. I also use multiple cartridges that each excel is specific shooting conditions. The purpose of that is to be able to succeed in collecting game and to do it ethically with a clean instant kill, regardless of the conditions. Once you actually train, your odds of success in "hunting" increase. The scope of ethical shots expands with practice and proper equipment. I don't recommend that any hunter shoot at anything they consider to be long range without extensive practice so they are as certain as possible of the outcome. This was a fun contest and I hope we can try it again next year, with a little more definition of the range and whether it includes running game or shots at significantly varying elevations.
it's funny how butthurt everyone is that the 30-06 won
We all know how well the 06 hits targets at 600yards so much better then the .300 or 7mm. Its is just a popularity contest. Im not complaining just wish people would thing before voting.
Perhaps the meaning of "long-range" is a loose one, or at the very least an ill-defined one in the minds of some hunters.
Since whatever range "long distance" is was never defined...how can the 30-06 which is a fine cartridge out to 300 yards, be criticized? Besides that what size Deer was never stated. A 400 lb Canadien trophy Whitetail isn't the same in Texas where any Deer over 100 lb is extraordinary.
Maybe next time... Leave the '06 out...
Idahoguy, if I see a 400lb deer, that's not a trophy, thats a bloody genetic abnormality LOL. 300 is pretty well what you can expect to see, and even those are fairly hard to find. That said, Im not going to say I wouldn't like to tag out on 400 pounds of lean, delicious deer
From Chuck Hawks:
"Here are the ranges at which the bullet drops 3" (the maximum point blank range) when zeroed for a maximum 3" rise for a few typical factory loads. These are calculated for a scope mounted 1.5" above the line of bore."
.243 Win/100 grain = 283 yards
.257 Wby Mag/120 grain = 317 yards
.270 Win/130 grain = 294 yards
7mm Rem Mag/150 grain = 305 yards
.30-30 Win/150 grain = 225 yards
.308 Win/150 grain = 267 yards
.30-06 Spfd/180 grain = 263 yards
.300 Win Mag/180 grain = 290 yards
.338 Win Mag/225 grain = 274 yards
i feel like people are making way to big a deal out of this.........
the information that chuck hawks shares on his website concerning maximum point blank range is ballistically correct. however, such information has little to do with long range hunting or shooting. there are much more informative sources of information on shooting all over the internet for those who care to look. spend time at the range with the proper equipment and shooting at all ranges and as many angles and weather conditions as you possibly can will teach you more than anything. by the way; although there are cartridges better deesigned for the purpose, the 30-06 is far from a wimpy long range cartridge. maybe one of the most underrated next to the .375 h&h. if a 30-06 was all i had, i certainly wouldn't feel undergunned at any practical hunting range.
OK I got say it..the old .06 is a very capable round that has killed many a game for many years,BUT IN MY OPINION for long range work, and I had only one gun to use, it would be a 7MM Rem Mag. Manageable recoil, and will kill any animal just as dead as the .06.
I am not as knowledgeable as some on this site. But I believe the wheels came off in the original question. Long Range in NY that's across the Hay Field. In DakotaMans neighborhood Long Range is the ability to see Tomorrow's Weather. I do love the 30-06 for my purpose.
I like the 30-06 with 150 grain bullets. I remember reading Jack O'Connor a million years ago and he said the reason he probably preferred the .270 over the 30-06 was because the .270's were loaded with high stepping 130 grain bullets and the store shelves were packed with 30-06 220 grain loads.
30-06 rules the day!!!!
The only way to see tomorrow's weather in DakotaMan's neighborhood in Georgia is on the Weather Channel or call a friend in Jackson, Mississippi! LOL
Long range for me is over 300 yards. Unless you can dope the wind and know your bullet drops the only rifles I consider long range have Magnum at the end. I own two 30-06's but I don't believe they shoot flat enough for me to take a shot over 300 yards with one on big game. I would shoot a 30-06 long range at a varmint but that wasn't the question.
Long range for more populated places which im sure post majority of these votes is approx. 200 yds in which the 30-06 can hang with the best of them.
There's a reason why nearly every new rifle comes out in 30-06 first. It's a popular round.
The only time I trust the Gov't, is in Pre-Nixon caliber endorsements.
Were obuma election poll workers involved in this poll?
Sooooo, maybe next time you guys can figure a better way of doing this? Ohhhh I not know , maybe dividing it up among "deer" types? Saaaaay, White tail and Black Tail East of the Mississippi and one for West of the Mississippi. Limit the cartridge choice to a more likly working group? Maybe keep the larger calibers for the larger "deer" like Moose, Mule, Elk and others??? What do you think? Most hunters are not taking hunting shots over the 200 meter distance for he most part anyway. Those few of us that actually do hunt at longer distances are just that, few. Do we use long range, magnum calibers for these types of hunts, yep! Or better yet how about devising a way to decide these kinds of challenges on the merits of the caliber taking the "personal feelings" out of it.
I don't know, but what started out as a viable challenge for the most part ended up as nothing more than a "my favorite" caliber contest and ignored the description of the contest in the first place. Go figure!
I hunt with both calibers and voted for the .300 per the parameters of the contest. You guys need to find a better way if this kind of thing is going to have any meaning.
Hope you can figure this out for the next time.
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