I was cruising around google, getting ready to buy a box of shells when I started noticing a bunch of message board questions asking about the 257 Weatherby. While most everyone had at least one nice thing to say, generally they followed that up with a personal prejudice toward some other caliber. Which is completely fine. Many state that with handloading, a 25-06 will do anything the WM will do. Maybe so. and the list goes on. I hope someone considering getting one comes by this post, as I will give you my take on the gun/cartidge after many yrs in the field with it. I hear the argument that Weatherby has too much freebore. I do not even know what freebore is. I do not, nor will ever handload. I've shot every factory load that is available for the round. Yes they are pricey, but so is gasoline. I have owned my Accumark since I believe 1996 or so. Bought it new at Relo's in Fairfield Ohio. I topped it with a Burris Signature 2.5-10x44AO scope with posi-lock. It took me 1 year to save the $$ to get it, but I wanted it so I got it. I was about 29 or 30 when I bought it and had been killing deer for yrs with a Rem 788 in 308 and a Browning A Bolt in 30-06. I had a friend that had a Weatherby, I thought it was cool, so I saved and got one. I'll tell you it has killed every deer I've ever hit with it. And right in it's tracks. Including the 207lb(dressed weight on a tripod scale in Beattyville KY) 5 yr old 10 pt that is staring down at me from my wall at this moment. He dropped in his tracks at 267yds (per my measuring wheel, I am an insurance dude) after I tried all the loads, the 115 gr ballistic tip shoots the best out of my gun, and kills the deer dead. No more dead than a 30-30, but dead nonetheless. Many rifles would've made that same shot on that good East Ky buck, but so what? I did it with my favorite one, and I have owned many many guns and this is my all time fav. If you practice and have a good rest and good judgement, this gun/round is lethal from a long long way out. I love it when the coyotes try to cross the hay field out in front of me. I am not a wealthy man, so I learned something early on about Weatherby ammo. I sell my once fired brass for over $1 per round ANYTIME I choose. Mostly on Ebay. My local gun shop will buy it for $20 with the box if I get the notion to take it in. That brings my net cost per box down to about $30. A whole lot of premium ammo cost that much or more. My gun, at the 200 yd range in Salt Lick KY will put 3 shots at 100yds that touch each other a lot of the time from a bench. I'm talking 1/2 moa a lot of the time. And btw it is a right handed gun and I shoot lefty. I never have fired a gun made for lefty's. Figured right handed guns are easier to sell if I get strapped for cash. I've let eveyone I know who wants to come shoot it, and all agree it is the best tackdriver they've ever shot. I also have a hunting buddy who has a savage 110 with a leupold 6x in 270 win that can do the same thing with his gun that cost about $1,000 less than mine did. That's just how it goes. He loves his gun and so do I.
The way I see it, life is short. If you want a particular gun/cartridge and it is powerful to humanely take your quarry, then giddy up. I still love the 308 and 30-06, but got rid of them both because they sat around collectin dust. If I were going to the range every weekend, I would not take my 257, that's not why I bought it. I shoot it 3 or 4 times per yr outside of deer season, and maybe 10-15 shots per session. 1st 6 at 100yds, and rest at 200. It groups at 200yds what many think is a great 100 yd group. to me that's cool. Any way, if I had the $$, I'd have tons of guns and shoot them all the time, but since I don't, I stick with my favs and shoot them when I can. I now have a yearning for a 300H&H for no other reason than it looks like a more than adequate ELK round with moderate recoil, + I just don't see them hardly anywhere, which is also cool to me. Rat-holing money right now, maybe 8-10 mos away from being able to afford one. But with some luck I'll have one before next fall.
OK I'm done now. Happy hunting/shooting/fishing to my fellow outdoors folk. God Bless.