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Petzal: The .375 H&H: Fraud or Scam?

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August 01, 2008

Petzal: The .375 H&H: Fraud or Scam?

By David E. Petzal and Phil Bourjaily

If you ever want to start a screaming fight at an SCI convention, use this gambit: "The .375 H&H is too big to be a plains game cartridge, and not big enough for dangerous game."

Then get under a table. The reason for the frenzy is that there is a considerable number of people who consider the .375 to be the single most useful African cartridge around, a sort of sub-equatorial equivalent of the .30/06. I am with the second school of thought, sort of. You can get .375 ammo loaded with 300-grain bullets at 2,550 fps, 270s at almost 2,700, and I've seen bullets in that diameter as light as 235 grains and 260 grains that you can handload. The only weight I've ever used is 300. I never saw the need, or the sense, in anything lighter.

*As a killer of plains game, especially the big antelope, the .375 is terrific. It's unhandy at 300 yards, but then there's not a lot of shooting at 300 yards over there. If your rifle weighs in the neighborhood of 9 1/2 to 10 pounds, its recoil is very manageable.

*The .375 is highly popular as a backup gun among PHs.

*If you can't shoot anything bigger for dangerous game, you're a lot better off with a .375 than with a cannon that petrifies you.

*If you want to make a one-rifle safari, there is no better round.

*However, I don't think it's much of a buffalo cartridge. It will kill them, eventually, but it won't discourage them. When you shoot old nyati, you want him to think: "Jeez, that felt like the wrath of Hillary Clinton. Maybe I better die right now and save everyone a lot of trouble."

from Jon in AZ wrote 5 years 28 weeks ago

I am getting comfortable with my new (to me) Remington 721 chambered in 375 H&H. It seems to me that my handloaded 235 grain Barnes TSX bullets at 2900fps will be adequite for anything in the Americas. If I was going to stand hunt large hogs I would use my Bushmaster BA50 in 50BMG with handloaded 647 grain TSX bullets. I would opt for the 50 while stand hunting because spotting and stocking with a 30 pound rifle is difficult.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 33 weeks ago

In the past couple of years, allot have changed. After 4 years in Alaska (1986 thru 1990) I gained a tremendous amount of knowledge both on the range and in the field. The two most neglected calibers were the 338 and 375 cal. Up to 300 yards are common in Alaska and anything over will rainbow no matter what you have. I remember Hunters using 375H&H said either they had to pass or just couldn’t hit anything past 200 yards because of round nosed bullets just didn’t have the range. For my 338 Win Mag I’ve found 250 grain Game kings shedding their jackets upon impact leaving two exit wounds on Caribou. I liked the 250 grain soft point boat tail but Hornady only had a 250 grain round nose bullet so I settled on the 225 grain with excellent results. Back in 91ish I sent a letter to Hornady to sagest a .338 diameter 250 grain soft point boat tail for long range shooting and the response was from Steve Hornady himself. In a nut shell He said Hornady is not planning to produce a soft point in 250 grain and a boat tail you wouldn’t gain enough ballistics to matter. So now you know what the mind set was back then. Now manufacturers are starting to realize Sportsmen are expecting better performance out of their equipment.

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from O Garcia wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

Jim Carmichael was responsible for some of the controversy because in his first major work, "The Book Of The Rifle" he said:1) the PHs Jim has talked to like clients who shoot .375s because of the way it overwhelms plains game. (I think the .375 may have been intended for this role anyway, remember the British regarded the .300 H&H as a "deer" or stag round.) but they themselves use .458's or larger for back up.2) Jim also added that most horror stories about dangerous game being shot multiple times and still getting at the shooter (or nearly doing so, except the big bore toting PH fired a back-up shot) involved .375s.3) Jim also didn't like the extra .33 inch or so bolt travel that the .375 demands.Ironically, Jim Carmichael's own favorite dangerous game catridge, the .458 Win. Mag. has come under fire in recent years, due to factory ammo that failed to generate the advertised 2,100 fps with 500 gr. bullets. Jim did not have this problem, because he handloaded his ammo, and Finn Aagard, another believer in the .458, did not, because his rifles luckily shot the .458 very fast. Finn has reported velocities approaching 2,300 fps. in Wolfe's RIFLE, and because we know how unfailingly honest Finn was... I can only conclude his rifles had abnormally fast bores. Note also that Finn shot "stopping rifles" with what we would call long barrels for the type, 23 to 25 inches.Reading one of Layne Simpson's recent books, I discovered he found the Hornady "solid" bullet in .458 to be very reliable, while the .375 "solid" from the same manufacturer had a tendency to rivet or bend and fail to penetrate. I'm guessing here, but considering that the Hornady "solid" was for many years the only "solid" readily available to American hunters (before Trophy Bonded Sledgehammer, Barnes Super Solid, etc.), maybe this was the reason for the .375's mixed reputation for dangerous game, especially with Jim Carmichael, who shot mostly Hornady solids.Over the years, I've "profiled" gunwriters I've read into how they react to the .375 (Holland) and .458 (Win)Jim Carmichael - doesn't really believe in the .375 for anything (not fast enough, doesn't hit hard enough), loves the .458Ross Seyfried - absolutely hates the .458, loves the .375, but prefers the .416's and his .577 Nitro for buffaloFinn Aagard - loves both the .375 and .458, and also, in the last decade of his life, the .416 Rem.Craig Boddington - loves the .375 and .416s, but contributed to the .458 controversy with numerous articles questioning its adequacy, but in recent years, reverses and calls it "adequate"Mister Petzal - in July 2007 Field and Stream Cartridge Guide, called the .375 versatile and useful in Africa, and called the .458 (and the 7MM Rem. Mag.) overratedSorry for long post.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

RMH,Figure about 14 grand.

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from Rocky Mtn Hunter wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

You guys who have hunted Alaska, Africa for say 7-10 days, guided outfittr. What kind of $$$$ are we talking about if in Africa killed about 4=6 animals and 2 animals in Alaska. Also, a Carivou hunt in Canada, what is the cost of that hunt. Been to the Rockies many times, going again in Oct for 16 days. Not got teh wall ful of NA monts, need a change of scenery. Any you gys go some numbers? I'd appreciate some facs and $$$$. The Old Gunslinger.

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from Rocky Mtn Hunter wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

Never needed anything larger than my old 06's, but if was ging to Africa wuld want the largest caliber I could handle. I do feel the 06in l80 or 220 gr is large enough for N American game, but except for the Big old mean Bears . If going for Bears I want a backup shoter with a cannon as I would in Africa. No such thing as overkill, a dead animal is just that Dead. So what if a tad of meat is lost, the game will be laying where you shot him.I also feel all hunting firearms should weigh in the range of 9-10 lbs for us skinny, boney guys with no fat to spare. All my Rocky Mtn guns weigh in that range with Limbsaver pads. If the guy wants a beat up, blue/black shoulder for a month then use the 4-5 lb magmums and you got it. I prefer the extra weight to be on the butt end, can hold more steady at my shoulder than at arms length 1-2feet out or so. My 700 in 06 weighs l0 lbs with wood stock.,Bored out that beautiful Walnut and added 2 lbs of lead to the end. Now it shoots like a 243.And no wobble from my forearm arm. When shooting off handed, you need to be able to hold that gun steady with thebn sling wrapped around your elbow for exta strength. i also use a can to walk with, but when hunting I use Bi-pods as my cane and shooting rest. A must for a l28 lb guy at 73.Going for Elk and Mulies in teh Bitteroots this fall, wish me luck on both, as this is likely my last Western hunt,unless my Rich Uncle leaves me a wad.

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Jim in Mo.Thank's for your compliment. Will be happy to elaborate on these African , and other hunts. I so much enjoy reading everyone's comments, ie. Clay Cooper, Rocky Mt Hunter, Mikes, your own, and everyone else. It is neat for an old man like me to have a chance to communicate with other serious hunters. Swore I'd never learn to use a computer, but reading and enjoying all your comments has forced me to do so.I'm leaving tomorrow for Tanzania till Sept 15, so eat your hearts out, wish we could all go together.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I tracked a 2 1/2 yr buck all afternoon from an improper location shot from a friend I was sitting with. Bubbles in blood made me think lung shot, but it must have been high lung we never found it and I think we tracked to soon.

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from Dr. Ralph wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I've tracked an 80 pound doe for hours that was shot by a .375 H&H Mag in the gut... Location, location, location.Still African dangerous game requires more than the .375 even with one to the boiler room. Go big or stay home.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Whoa Happy, Elaborate more on these hunts.

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Have shot only two Cape Buffalo with a 375. I borrowed one to shot a 44 incher a couple of of years ago, he ran 50 75 yards and collapsed. Also killed a Central African Buffalo in the C.A.R. last year with another borrowed rifle, Air France decided they did't want to ship my rifles, but that's another story. Hit the buff perfectly on the shoulder with the 375, the bullet fragmented on impact, and the animal charged.I dropped it with my second shot, with a different bullet of unknown origin. Not the 375's fault just weird old ammo.However, I've killed 17 Cape Buffalo with the 416 Rigby. All dropped in place or less than 50 yards. Since Barnes came out with their Triple Shock I've seen 4 Buff turn feet up at the shot. Two by me and two by my son.Have been in on the clean up of some Buff wounded by the 375, not the caliber's fault, just poor shooting. When this happens you want 400-500 grain bullets - or larger - so I start larger before trouble happens. That means 416 and up, and I don't like recoil either.I know thousands of elephant have been killed with 375's and smaller calibers, but I feel today's short duration hunts with fewer shot opportunities call for calibers larger than the old 375. I've killed elephant with 450 Ackley, 470 N.E., 500N.E., and 500 Jefferies, these calibers take care of business. I've never shot an elephant with a 375, but have lost count of the amount of plains game I have taken with this wonderful caliber. I used to feel I was too sophisticated to use the 375, then I would find one in my hand and it would feel just fine.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Ryan,I hear you. Once I was tempted to shoot a black bear which was scurrying up the hill by me with some hounds in the distance. I just sat still and in a few minutes the hounds came by in full pursuit and a little while later the houndsmen came by heading to the treed bear in the distance. From the looks of those dudes, I would not like to have been seen standing over the bear with a skinning knife.

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I've been lucky enough to hunt Africa many times, both first class and by shoe string, using a variety of rifles and calibers. Here are a few thoughts.If it's your first trip and hunting plains game, take your favorite deer/elk rifle you'll do just fine. If your first trip and including buffalo take your deer rifle and a .375. If you only want to take one rifle and include dangerous game take a .375. If hunting plains and dangerous game and can handle heavy recoil take a .300 class rifle and a .416 Rigby. You' be a happy camper. But you must practice and use sticks while you practice. I know many of you love a.338, so do I, but I've discovered over the years I more often pack a .300 and a .416. Today's modern bullets make these hard to beat.If your weapons don,t shown up in baggage claim, the rifle you borrow from your PH will be a battered .375, so it,s nice to be familiar with the caliber. You won't have a problem.My biggest complaint with todays many varieties of new .375s is the recoil. The added velocity for longer range shooting is rarely used. Professional Hunters are not ging to let you blaze away at 300 yards with one of the new .375 Ultra Africanus rifles. Recently, I ran into an experienced fellow hunter in Cameroon West Africa. He cast a bemused look at my beatup old .416 and lectured me with very accurate details proving his .375 Rem Ultra Mag was much more powerful than my old war horse. He did kill a couple of nice trophies with a few extra shots, and aquired two or three nice recoil wounds over his eye despite a deafening muzzle break on the barrel.The 375 is a great caliber I owned one for years, shooting and thinking of Africa, never dreaming I would have a chance to hunt there. Sometimes dreams come true- there,s that to consider too.

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from Ryan wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I know about the unwritten hound dog law Del. Where I set up at is about a mile from the still hunt/dog hunt line and the deer certainly aren't in front of anyones dogs. They all just get pushed off the eastern portion of Osceola by the baying hounds and into the Big Gum swamp area. If you move in early and I mean early because its like trying to Infiltrate into Cambodia, you can catch bucks that get scared by all the dogs, but you certainly wouldn't even be a mile from the nearest dog or see one for that matter, and even if I did and there was a hound on the tail of an 8 point monsnter, I wouldn't shoot anyway and incur the wrath of some old timer swamp cracker and his buddies.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Del in KSI think RMH might be miffed over all the flak he took over a couple of posts he had or maybe he is just on vacation.WAMtnhunter

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from Art Lamb wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I hunted in Alaska for 5 year with a Winchester model 70 in 375 H&H, and had great results with the larger brown bear. Never used it on the smaller stuff although it sure would work. I used 300 grain solids all the time with a heavy load.

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from Mike Reeder wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I don't own and have never shot a .375 H&H, even though I have tried no end to explain to my wife why it would be humiliating to get an unexpected invitation to hunt Africa and be forced to admit my deficiency. I do know that Jack O'Connor considered the .375H&H -- not the .270 -- the most useful and indispensible round in the world. He also felt it was a little less gun than ideal for the biggest stuff, but that if restricted to only one round to hunt anything in the world it was the best compromise. The trajectory of the 270 gr. bullet is almost identical to the 180 gr. 30-06, which makes it flat enough to shoot out to 300 yards without much guessing or holdover. However, since there is absolutely nothing I have ever hunted that required more than an '06 to put down, I never really saw any good reason to buy a gun that would knock my feelings loose. Interestingly, many of the old time African hunters and PH's whose writings I've read actually preferred the .375 to the .458 or .470 for elephants, rhino and buff; not because of its lesser recoil but because of what many felt was its superior penetration with the 300 gr. solid. As for cape buffalo, based entirely on nothing but a lot of reading on the subject, it seems to me that nothing short of a stinger missile can be counted on to stop one in its tracks if the first shot is not put where it needs to go.

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from Dr. Ralph wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

In Africa I need something larger than a .375.... everywhere else I need something smaller. Nostalgia is a powerful aphrodisiac

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Oh forgot my 700 has a VXIII 1.5X5 Leupold on it. Never failed thru rain ner sleet ner snow.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

AKlaskan ex.I have owned 2 600's and 1 660 but the one I shot all the critters with was a Mdl 700 classic. It doesn't kick like the smaller guns and is easier to hold steady. That short stubby 350 cartridge performs way better than it looks. I suspect the secret is in the operating pressure. Anyhow a 660 in 350 was my favorite security gun for Salmon fishing. Not much heavier than my Mdl 629 S&W but much more powerful and easier to hit with.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

bill boyd,Thats one of the reasons I enjoy reading about his hunts. He doesn't just promote a product (scope, rifle), he always includes cartridges and bullets used.

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from AlaskanExile wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Del in KSSorry, I forgot the 350 Remington Magnum, almost as versatile as the 375 H&H. An outstanding middle-weight cartridge. Most "gun-nuts" can tell you how much the little 350 Remington 600's kick, but when pressed, most will admit to never having actually fired one!My brother has a small collection of 600's, 660's and Mohawks, I've shot most of those and I really like the 350, I just wish they had made a lefty-600 action, but sales were bad enough on the right-handed versions. I'll probably build a Montana 1999 in 350 Mag one of these days, and maybe a 6.5 just like it for sheep.Those little 600's are awesome, that much-maligned backward dog-leg bolt was perfect in that it wouldn't thump your knuckle when the rifle recoils. That 600 action is shorter and the trigger is farther forward(making the shortest possible rifle)of any other action.Remington had a great thing, but it was way ahead of it's time, and a few hard-headed, crusty old gunwriters killed it before it could really catch on. You sure don't see too many of those rifles on the used rack these days. I think that says something about it, people who know are hanging on to theirs.My wife shoots a 600 Mohawk in 308, which I had specially cut down and fitted for her. I'm now keeping my eyes open for a few more 600's for my young daughters that seem to grow a foot taller every time I turn around.

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from bill boyd wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Jim in Mo:I quoted Boddington correctly. Rifle Shooter, Sept/Oct. 2001 article titled "Which .375 for you?" p. 65"The faster .375s are more versatile and more powerful. Up close, with good bullets, they are very similar in apparent performance to the .416 Rigby and Remington, and much easier to use at longer range. But not everybody will be comfortable with the recoil."Professor Page gave much the same impression in his 1969 article about his .375 Weatherby. It's the 5K of energy that does the work.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Rocky Mtn Hunter,Are you still out there? I miss your posts? Drop us a line sometime.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Ryan,Having grown up hunting deer in Florida's Ocala Nat'l Forest with a pack of Walker hounds I know what you mean about being proud of a spike buck. No doubt you are aware of the local custom that when you shoot a deer in front of somebody elses dogs they are supposed to get half the meat. My oldest brother (age 74)still lives in Altoona and maintains a pack of Walkers to this day. Eight years ago his youngest son shot a 160 pound 10 point (12 guage with 00 buck)that was the talk of the town. While big for Fla. that deer would be a cull in Kansas. The deer are much bigger here but IMO wild mature bucks are hard no matter where you hunt. I suspect many of the deer you see shot on film to sell a product are at least semi-tame. Heck, there's an Amish farmer in Macon Co. Mo. with a herd of Whitetails. Every year I drive by his farm in the fall and see wallhanger bucks that are tame as any Black angus cow.My friend Chuck Sheril still lives in Anchorage and always carried a 375 H&H when we hunted AK. I carried a 350 Rem mag w/250 gr bullets or a 300 Wby. w/200 gr partitions. All 3 worked well usually with a nice big hole all the way thru. A bull moose shot in the chest was the only critter that stopped one of my bullets. Chuch has hunted AK for over 30 years, shot a lot of game but no big bears.

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from Ralph wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Cleaning out a septic drain with a rifle bullet is down right ingenious. It seems like a plumbers snake would have been a better tool though. However, I do appreciate uses of "not-exactly what you should use" type ingenuity. My Dad used to use shirt hanger wire and pieces of an old shower shoe to repair an old car he drove. The hanger wire was used to replace parts on the carburetor and the shower shoe worked as gasket material. Also, one time he used kite string when the windshield wiper would only go one way. It required the passenger, me, to pull the wiper over for the second swipe on the windshield. Lack of funds or an open car parts or hardware store can sometimes can bring out the inventiveness in all of us.

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from Ryan wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I have to agree with the not as much meat damage assessment with lower velocites. People shoot deer with .50 cal muzzleloaders all the time and with 380 grain 12 gage slugs in states like Illinois etc. If the .375 works for you, by all means, be confident in a quick kill. The meat damage problem/complaints usually arise with magnum high velocity rounds with frangible bullets. Too many people key in on velocity where they think somehow they will be more accurate firing a round at 3200 fps that drops 0.1 inches less than one at 2900 fps. By chance, nothing lives around me here in northern FL, (Except the Elusive Skunk Ape), that my diminutive 7mm-08 wouldn't dispatch like lightning and quite frankly I'd be comfortable with a .243 or 30-30, however I would not disparage anyone for using a .375 or .338 etc. for large game to ensure a quick kill.

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from crm3006 wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

It seems we have strayed away from the topic of the .375 H&H, but to tie it in with the TSA (Totaly Stupid Agency), I bought mine in Loveland,CO. Had to fly home through Denver. The people at the airline counter were not satisfied that removing the bolt from a bolt action rifle made it unfireable! The local Gestapo Agent in Residence near the airline counter wanted to know if I could remove the barrel! Finally, after repeatedly quoting the airline's own regulations to them, I convinced everyone that my (as yet unfired) .375 was NOT going to escape from a locked case, self insert the bolt, find ammo somewhere, escape from the baggage compartment of a 737, and go on a killing spree! Sure enough, when I arrived in Houston,the bolt was still out of the rifle, case still locked, and no killing spree. After that experience, I have sworn off of flying with firearms. However, a trip or so ago when I was about to clear security (LOL), a very serious and dedicated servant of the Totaly Stupid Agency confiscated my new tube of toothpaste, as it was over the allowed limit! I am glad we are so safe on our airplanes.

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from AlaskanExile wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

A friend of mine shot a Kodiak Brown with his trusty 30-06 but didn't put it down (hit badly, not hunting with a guide). He then scared 10 years off his life looking for that wounded bear, which he never found in two days of searching.When he got back to town, he bought a 375 H&H and now hunts everything, even Sitka Deer with it. The 375 works for everything: moose, caribou, deer and of course, black and brown bears. You could say the same thing for the 338 Winchester, and I'm pretty sure that Dave has said so before, in his coulumn in Field and Stream.These middle-weight rifles like the 375, 9.3x62, 35 Whelen, 338 Federal up-through 338 Win are outstanding deer and elk cartridges. A larger bore does not automatically equate to more meat damage. If you choose lighter bullets at higher velocities and shoot game at close range, you could get some meat damage, but with velocities in the 22-2800 range it is not as likely with these middle-weights. They do their work with bullet mass, not velocity.My brother is going to shoot some deer with his 375 this year on our annual freezer-fill hunt (all does). I’m going to shoot one with my 45-70, and another with my Winchester 1895 chambered in 303 British.Last year, I shot two mule-deer with my 338, which I posted to this blog a few weeks ago. I was using 225 grain Federal Fusion ammo, and neither deer was very big, and neither had a lot of meat damage, certainly less than some I’ve seen hit with high-velocity rounds.

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from dale freeman wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Well I've never shot any of the cannons and have no desire to do so.Any thing I have to shoot with the kitchen sink at 2500 fps does not interest me.I'm perfectly content to leave African game to the Africans and enjoy the most beautiful habitat in the world.P.S.Earler i posted a comment about Remington and thier space looking guns and refused to buy one.How ever I did buy the Ruger M77,Hawkeye, 270 cal. and I love it.If you're not looking at the Ruger Hawkeye your missing a very fine rifle.

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from Ryan wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

The reason they don't show southwestern hunts for whitetail is probably the same reason they don't have TV shows with guys in regular Carhardt pants and a hand me down woodland camo T-shirt or blaze sweathirt studying deer sign and finding scrapes and actually hunting and having to hike in to their ambush site, gasp, maybe even over a mile. People now only care about antler size and weight of the deer, hence why there are a lot of articles about Iowa and Missouri bucks and Saskatchewan. Not that real hunting doesn't take place there. It's just that most of the clowns on TV are in heated shooting houses or on private ranches over feed plots with trail cameras and the latest fashion show worthy camo that the deer doesn't give a dang about. I'm prouder of my 100 pound cowhorn spike that I shot at 40 yards with my 7mm-08 one morning after canoeing in to the middle of Big Gum Swamp in North Florida where I set up "downstream" of where I knew someones hound dogs were running the deer off the dog hunt area and into the thick stuff than if I had shot some 10 point monster steroid buck over a pile of corn with my fancy scent lock clothes and special scent blocker etc. I fed my family and felt like I actually hunted. We need to get away from the shooting gallery trend where fat a**es get driven out to stands on golf carts and told they are hunting and get back to what our grandfathers did.

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from Zermoid wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Hehe, That sounds like Govt's normal workings, one dork says it has to be done a certain way and the next one tells you the opposite, standard operating procedure for most Govt agencies. That way they can always nail you for SOMETHING no matter how well you try to follow the "Rules"!

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from Dave Petzal wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

To Bernie Kuntz: There is no such thing as consistency in the enforcement of airline regs. It depends on the shift, the phase of the moon, and Derek Jeter's batting average. The regs says that ammo must be transported in either the factory container or in a container made for the transport of small arms ammunition, but half the TSA goons have not read the regs, and the other half doesn't care what they say.Try this: Store your ammo in the fragile, crummy factory boxes, but put the boxes inside a Cabela's Ammo Travel Case (Item number IJ 215353)). It costs $25, locks, doesn't take up a lot of space, and doubles nicely as a pistol case. That impresses the hell of out them.Coming back from Africa, my party checked its guns and ammo through with no problem, but with the hunters behind us in line, the SAA people insisted that the ammo be packed with the guns, and when US Customs saw that, they went ape. An airline jerk is an airline jerk, no matter where.

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from Bernie Kuntz wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Jim in Mo.--you are correct that I had my ammo for both rifles packed in factory boxes, although all my rounds for the .375 and my 7mm Weatherby were handloads. I didn't get any grief about the ammo. I cannot understand why one could not pack the ammo in hard, plastic boxes of the type sold by RCBS, Dillon and others but don't really know if that is acceptable to the "gun goons" at the airports. Anyone know the answer to that?

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from Silvertip wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I don't have a .375 but I do have a great elk rifle. It is a White .45 cal. muzzleloader that shoots 460 grain projectiles very well. I killed four elk with it. One round each.

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from Michael wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I have never shot a .375, but I do have a Ruger no 1 in 9.3x74 on the way. I probably won't shoot anything larger than Texas hogs (of which we have too many) with it, but the idea of using a classic cartridge that has been around many years is appealing.

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from hillbilly hunter. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Drive your Kenworth to the drive-in if you want, as for me ,I'll drive my new car. Shoot the 375 at deer at 75yd., as for me I'll just stick with my .308 Win.

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from JackBohm wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

While it is unrelated, I second Mr. Diehl's comments. Most of us will never see Africa, and of those that do see africa, we'll stick to more affordable plains game. On another note, how come F&S doesn't bother with tactics for those of us who live in the hills of South-Central MI- all rolling hills and woods here.

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from PDKMF wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Being a sucker for nostalgia I had to have a .375HH. Found a Model 70 Safari at a gun show for a a great price and in nearly new condition. The previous owner said it kicked too much to use. I mounted a Leupold 1.5-6 scope on it. With either factory ammo or handloads it shoots 1.25" or less all day. And while it's definitely not a varmint round the recoil is very manageable. I'ts a lot of fun to shoot!

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from Tom Obuhanych wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

This comment on the .375 H&H is verygood appraisal. I recently came back (June) from a Plains Game &Leopard Hunt in Namibia. I took myHusqvarna .358 Norma Maganum. It was ideal...near the .375 H&H but flatter shooting, more velocity...250 gr. bullets. I have a .375 H&H too, but opted for the .358 Norma magnum...perfect choice.Use enough gun. My PH formerly worked for the Conservation Dep't. and culled 21 Elephants over the years with his .375 H&H. There's always the old saw..."its where you hit them", Yes, of course...but in hunting, often there's not the perfect shot...and that's where "enough gun" is smart. Cape Buffalo is a class by iteself,,,I would opt for .458 or .50 calibers.Best Regards,Tom

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from Howard wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I use 286g woodleighs at 2350 fps in a 9.3x62mm, this will do for ANY plains game or soft skinned dangerous game out to 250y, who really needs more. If I was to run into a buffalo I would reach into my pocket for a solid and not hesitate to use it, but if I was after buffalo especially then I would rather have a .458 lott than the 375.....cheers

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from SD Bob wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

The last sentance or two is why I love reading Mr. Petzal! Funny as hell!I've never shot a .375 H&H but I have touched off the Ruger round which I'm told kicks a smidge more? If your used to shooting waterfowl? Then the recoil of either of these rounds will be of no consequense but then again ducks don't charge when hit poorly!

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from Scott wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Blue Ox:Nope. He didn't have it mounted per se. His wife yelled at us for letting him do it. Hell we couldn't NOT let him! He did however add to the legend of the .375 H&H being a s**t disturber!

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from Mark-1 wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I always thought the 375 HH suckered the American shooter because of its touted all around usefulness in one rifle. The theme always hits the USA hunter’s warm nerve, as it hits the African farmer that must shoot the variable sized vermin out of his fields on the cheap.The 375’s I’ve seen and shot are accurate and the recoil is manageable, but I always opted for the 458 for dangerous game work and always will given the choice. I will always opt for a 35 Whelen or a 338 as a medium bore given the choice.Some people don’t like pizza.

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from Blue Ox wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

So did you have the drain line mounted after all that?

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from Scott wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Weeelll sit right back and you'll hear a tale....ha. This is no kidding. The only experience I have ever had with the .375 H&H was a time long, long ago when a cousin of ours purchased one "just to say he had one". It sat in his cabinet for years until one fateful day when his septic tank drain line got stopped up. That poor s.o.b. lay prone not 25 yards from that awful hole and proceeded to clean it out. He was a slight built gentleman and I'm telling you he scooted backwards enough to scrape his belly quite a bit and spread natural fertilizer everywhere. That, sirs, is the only demonstration of a .375 I've ever seen. Now I'm sure that if you shot a large African Buffalo with one of those things it would kill it very dead having seen what it'll do to a septic tank drain line!Needless to say, do not try this at home. This happened many years ago when we were young and very foolish.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

bill boyd,I don't think Boddington meant what you read. He's a big fat bullet man. He loves 375 but .40 and bigger is better, regardless of speed.Daniel, Go get 'em. No such thing as overkill I say!PS, although I do like a few steaks for the effort.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Bernie,I like talking to people who've been there. One question. You say you took handloads to African hunt. Did you encounter any problems with the airlines or did you pack them in factory boxes knowing the dummies wouldn't know any better?

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from Bernie Kuntz wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

My experience with the .375 H & H is very limited compared with some hunters, but I like very much what I have seen.I shot a bison--two shots through the heart--with my .375 and the 300-grain Nosler Partition. Also shot about five animals in South Africa four years ago, the largest two being a blue wildebeast and a waterbuck. Both these animals are approximately the size of an elk. I used handloaded 270-grain Hornady Spire-Points and IMR-4064 powder. No complaints!I have to tell you folks about the rifle. I blundered upon it at Cabela's Gun Library in Sidney, NE ten years ago on my way to Mexico for a quail hunt. The rifle was custom built by Jim Botsford in the 1980s, .375 H & H Magnum on a pre-war Model 70 Winchester Super Grade action, Bastogne walnut stock, hand checkering, Pete Grisel skeleton buttplate and grip caps, express sights, 1-3/4X - 5X Leupold Vari-X-II in Leupold detachable mounts. Barrel had been cut back to 22-1/2" from the original 25". Previous owner, a big rancher from Colorado, said his wife shot one mule deer with the rifle. (With the skeleton buttplate I imagine it hammered her pretty badly! I slip on a tie-on leather pad when hunting with the rifle or shooting it over a bench, and do not find the recoil to be uncomfortable.) I had the trigger worked on, also had the late Dave Gentry mill a new set of swivel studs, as the odd-ball 3/8" size on the rifle wouldn't fit any swivels that I could find.In any case, the rifle is too pretty to drag around in an Alaskan rain forest after brown bear, and who knows if I will ever get to Africa again? But I intend to keep it and use it whenever is practical.

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from bill boyd wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Professor Warren Page thought the .375 Weatherby was some pumpkins. If memory serves right he shot out 3 or so barrels on Capes and such.I think Warren knew what he wasabout! Even Boddington says he can't seperate the .375 Improveds from the .416's and such.I'll stand with Warren, even if they had trouble finding his heart!

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from Daniel wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I have friend who hunts deer with his .375. A 270gr bullet leaves a 4 inch exit hole. We don't care about "over kill". He shoots a .375, my brother uses a .338, and I am going to us a .458WM. The .458 is just to see what happens and to say I did.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

How come Finn Agaard did so well on buffalo?I believe the 270gr has a place if I were shooting lion or leopard.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 5 years 37 weeks ago

Ho hum. Another day in Africa, a land where 99.999% of American hunters will never hunt.Hey, Dave, when F&S writes those 'Streategies for Deer' articles, how come they're, every year, year after year, tips for getting a white-tailed deer in the middle of the midcontinental corn and wheat belt?F&S should do a southwestern desert or basin and range oriented article now and again. All that baloney about tree stands and feed lots and woody brakes between fields of grain isn't worth a pile of jackrabbit raisins in Arizona.

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from brian wrote 5 years 37 weeks ago

I look foward to buying a 375 h&h, underpowered or not I am a sucker for the classics.

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Jim in Mo.Thank's for your compliment. Will be happy to elaborate on these African , and other hunts. I so much enjoy reading everyone's comments, ie. Clay Cooper, Rocky Mt Hunter, Mikes, your own, and everyone else. It is neat for an old man like me to have a chance to communicate with other serious hunters. Swore I'd never learn to use a computer, but reading and enjoying all your comments has forced me to do so.I'm leaving tomorrow for Tanzania till Sept 15, so eat your hearts out, wish we could all go together.

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from Jon in AZ wrote 5 years 28 weeks ago

I am getting comfortable with my new (to me) Remington 721 chambered in 375 H&H. It seems to me that my handloaded 235 grain Barnes TSX bullets at 2900fps will be adequite for anything in the Americas. If I was going to stand hunt large hogs I would use my Bushmaster BA50 in 50BMG with handloaded 647 grain TSX bullets. I would opt for the 50 while stand hunting because spotting and stocking with a 30 pound rifle is difficult.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 5 years 33 weeks ago

In the past couple of years, allot have changed. After 4 years in Alaska (1986 thru 1990) I gained a tremendous amount of knowledge both on the range and in the field. The two most neglected calibers were the 338 and 375 cal. Up to 300 yards are common in Alaska and anything over will rainbow no matter what you have. I remember Hunters using 375H&H said either they had to pass or just couldn’t hit anything past 200 yards because of round nosed bullets just didn’t have the range. For my 338 Win Mag I’ve found 250 grain Game kings shedding their jackets upon impact leaving two exit wounds on Caribou. I liked the 250 grain soft point boat tail but Hornady only had a 250 grain round nose bullet so I settled on the 225 grain with excellent results. Back in 91ish I sent a letter to Hornady to sagest a .338 diameter 250 grain soft point boat tail for long range shooting and the response was from Steve Hornady himself. In a nut shell He said Hornady is not planning to produce a soft point in 250 grain and a boat tail you wouldn’t gain enough ballistics to matter. So now you know what the mind set was back then. Now manufacturers are starting to realize Sportsmen are expecting better performance out of their equipment.

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from O Garcia wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

Jim Carmichael was responsible for some of the controversy because in his first major work, "The Book Of The Rifle" he said:1) the PHs Jim has talked to like clients who shoot .375s because of the way it overwhelms plains game. (I think the .375 may have been intended for this role anyway, remember the British regarded the .300 H&H as a "deer" or stag round.) but they themselves use .458's or larger for back up.2) Jim also added that most horror stories about dangerous game being shot multiple times and still getting at the shooter (or nearly doing so, except the big bore toting PH fired a back-up shot) involved .375s.3) Jim also didn't like the extra .33 inch or so bolt travel that the .375 demands.Ironically, Jim Carmichael's own favorite dangerous game catridge, the .458 Win. Mag. has come under fire in recent years, due to factory ammo that failed to generate the advertised 2,100 fps with 500 gr. bullets. Jim did not have this problem, because he handloaded his ammo, and Finn Aagard, another believer in the .458, did not, because his rifles luckily shot the .458 very fast. Finn has reported velocities approaching 2,300 fps. in Wolfe's RIFLE, and because we know how unfailingly honest Finn was... I can only conclude his rifles had abnormally fast bores. Note also that Finn shot "stopping rifles" with what we would call long barrels for the type, 23 to 25 inches.Reading one of Layne Simpson's recent books, I discovered he found the Hornady "solid" bullet in .458 to be very reliable, while the .375 "solid" from the same manufacturer had a tendency to rivet or bend and fail to penetrate. I'm guessing here, but considering that the Hornady "solid" was for many years the only "solid" readily available to American hunters (before Trophy Bonded Sledgehammer, Barnes Super Solid, etc.), maybe this was the reason for the .375's mixed reputation for dangerous game, especially with Jim Carmichael, who shot mostly Hornady solids.Over the years, I've "profiled" gunwriters I've read into how they react to the .375 (Holland) and .458 (Win)Jim Carmichael - doesn't really believe in the .375 for anything (not fast enough, doesn't hit hard enough), loves the .458Ross Seyfried - absolutely hates the .458, loves the .375, but prefers the .416's and his .577 Nitro for buffaloFinn Aagard - loves both the .375 and .458, and also, in the last decade of his life, the .416 Rem.Craig Boddington - loves the .375 and .416s, but contributed to the .458 controversy with numerous articles questioning its adequacy, but in recent years, reverses and calls it "adequate"Mister Petzal - in July 2007 Field and Stream Cartridge Guide, called the .375 versatile and useful in Africa, and called the .458 (and the 7MM Rem. Mag.) overratedSorry for long post.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

RMH,Figure about 14 grand.

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from Rocky Mtn Hunter wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

You guys who have hunted Alaska, Africa for say 7-10 days, guided outfittr. What kind of $$$$ are we talking about if in Africa killed about 4=6 animals and 2 animals in Alaska. Also, a Carivou hunt in Canada, what is the cost of that hunt. Been to the Rockies many times, going again in Oct for 16 days. Not got teh wall ful of NA monts, need a change of scenery. Any you gys go some numbers? I'd appreciate some facs and $$$$. The Old Gunslinger.

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from Rocky Mtn Hunter wrote 5 years 34 weeks ago

Never needed anything larger than my old 06's, but if was ging to Africa wuld want the largest caliber I could handle. I do feel the 06in l80 or 220 gr is large enough for N American game, but except for the Big old mean Bears . If going for Bears I want a backup shoter with a cannon as I would in Africa. No such thing as overkill, a dead animal is just that Dead. So what if a tad of meat is lost, the game will be laying where you shot him.I also feel all hunting firearms should weigh in the range of 9-10 lbs for us skinny, boney guys with no fat to spare. All my Rocky Mtn guns weigh in that range with Limbsaver pads. If the guy wants a beat up, blue/black shoulder for a month then use the 4-5 lb magmums and you got it. I prefer the extra weight to be on the butt end, can hold more steady at my shoulder than at arms length 1-2feet out or so. My 700 in 06 weighs l0 lbs with wood stock.,Bored out that beautiful Walnut and added 2 lbs of lead to the end. Now it shoots like a 243.And no wobble from my forearm arm. When shooting off handed, you need to be able to hold that gun steady with thebn sling wrapped around your elbow for exta strength. i also use a can to walk with, but when hunting I use Bi-pods as my cane and shooting rest. A must for a l28 lb guy at 73.Going for Elk and Mulies in teh Bitteroots this fall, wish me luck on both, as this is likely my last Western hunt,unless my Rich Uncle leaves me a wad.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I tracked a 2 1/2 yr buck all afternoon from an improper location shot from a friend I was sitting with. Bubbles in blood made me think lung shot, but it must have been high lung we never found it and I think we tracked to soon.

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from Dr. Ralph wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I've tracked an 80 pound doe for hours that was shot by a .375 H&H Mag in the gut... Location, location, location.Still African dangerous game requires more than the .375 even with one to the boiler room. Go big or stay home.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Whoa Happy, Elaborate more on these hunts.

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Have shot only two Cape Buffalo with a 375. I borrowed one to shot a 44 incher a couple of of years ago, he ran 50 75 yards and collapsed. Also killed a Central African Buffalo in the C.A.R. last year with another borrowed rifle, Air France decided they did't want to ship my rifles, but that's another story. Hit the buff perfectly on the shoulder with the 375, the bullet fragmented on impact, and the animal charged.I dropped it with my second shot, with a different bullet of unknown origin. Not the 375's fault just weird old ammo.However, I've killed 17 Cape Buffalo with the 416 Rigby. All dropped in place or less than 50 yards. Since Barnes came out with their Triple Shock I've seen 4 Buff turn feet up at the shot. Two by me and two by my son.Have been in on the clean up of some Buff wounded by the 375, not the caliber's fault, just poor shooting. When this happens you want 400-500 grain bullets - or larger - so I start larger before trouble happens. That means 416 and up, and I don't like recoil either.I know thousands of elephant have been killed with 375's and smaller calibers, but I feel today's short duration hunts with fewer shot opportunities call for calibers larger than the old 375. I've killed elephant with 450 Ackley, 470 N.E., 500N.E., and 500 Jefferies, these calibers take care of business. I've never shot an elephant with a 375, but have lost count of the amount of plains game I have taken with this wonderful caliber. I used to feel I was too sophisticated to use the 375, then I would find one in my hand and it would feel just fine.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Ryan,I hear you. Once I was tempted to shoot a black bear which was scurrying up the hill by me with some hounds in the distance. I just sat still and in a few minutes the hounds came by in full pursuit and a little while later the houndsmen came by heading to the treed bear in the distance. From the looks of those dudes, I would not like to have been seen standing over the bear with a skinning knife.

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from Happy Myles wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I've been lucky enough to hunt Africa many times, both first class and by shoe string, using a variety of rifles and calibers. Here are a few thoughts.If it's your first trip and hunting plains game, take your favorite deer/elk rifle you'll do just fine. If your first trip and including buffalo take your deer rifle and a .375. If you only want to take one rifle and include dangerous game take a .375. If hunting plains and dangerous game and can handle heavy recoil take a .300 class rifle and a .416 Rigby. You' be a happy camper. But you must practice and use sticks while you practice. I know many of you love a.338, so do I, but I've discovered over the years I more often pack a .300 and a .416. Today's modern bullets make these hard to beat.If your weapons don,t shown up in baggage claim, the rifle you borrow from your PH will be a battered .375, so it,s nice to be familiar with the caliber. You won't have a problem.My biggest complaint with todays many varieties of new .375s is the recoil. The added velocity for longer range shooting is rarely used. Professional Hunters are not ging to let you blaze away at 300 yards with one of the new .375 Ultra Africanus rifles. Recently, I ran into an experienced fellow hunter in Cameroon West Africa. He cast a bemused look at my beatup old .416 and lectured me with very accurate details proving his .375 Rem Ultra Mag was much more powerful than my old war horse. He did kill a couple of nice trophies with a few extra shots, and aquired two or three nice recoil wounds over his eye despite a deafening muzzle break on the barrel.The 375 is a great caliber I owned one for years, shooting and thinking of Africa, never dreaming I would have a chance to hunt there. Sometimes dreams come true- there,s that to consider too.

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from Ryan wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I know about the unwritten hound dog law Del. Where I set up at is about a mile from the still hunt/dog hunt line and the deer certainly aren't in front of anyones dogs. They all just get pushed off the eastern portion of Osceola by the baying hounds and into the Big Gum swamp area. If you move in early and I mean early because its like trying to Infiltrate into Cambodia, you can catch bucks that get scared by all the dogs, but you certainly wouldn't even be a mile from the nearest dog or see one for that matter, and even if I did and there was a hound on the tail of an 8 point monsnter, I wouldn't shoot anyway and incur the wrath of some old timer swamp cracker and his buddies.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Del in KSI think RMH might be miffed over all the flak he took over a couple of posts he had or maybe he is just on vacation.WAMtnhunter

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from Art Lamb wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I hunted in Alaska for 5 year with a Winchester model 70 in 375 H&H, and had great results with the larger brown bear. Never used it on the smaller stuff although it sure would work. I used 300 grain solids all the time with a heavy load.

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from Mike Reeder wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I don't own and have never shot a .375 H&H, even though I have tried no end to explain to my wife why it would be humiliating to get an unexpected invitation to hunt Africa and be forced to admit my deficiency. I do know that Jack O'Connor considered the .375H&H -- not the .270 -- the most useful and indispensible round in the world. He also felt it was a little less gun than ideal for the biggest stuff, but that if restricted to only one round to hunt anything in the world it was the best compromise. The trajectory of the 270 gr. bullet is almost identical to the 180 gr. 30-06, which makes it flat enough to shoot out to 300 yards without much guessing or holdover. However, since there is absolutely nothing I have ever hunted that required more than an '06 to put down, I never really saw any good reason to buy a gun that would knock my feelings loose. Interestingly, many of the old time African hunters and PH's whose writings I've read actually preferred the .375 to the .458 or .470 for elephants, rhino and buff; not because of its lesser recoil but because of what many felt was its superior penetration with the 300 gr. solid. As for cape buffalo, based entirely on nothing but a lot of reading on the subject, it seems to me that nothing short of a stinger missile can be counted on to stop one in its tracks if the first shot is not put where it needs to go.

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from Dr. Ralph wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

In Africa I need something larger than a .375.... everywhere else I need something smaller. Nostalgia is a powerful aphrodisiac

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Oh forgot my 700 has a VXIII 1.5X5 Leupold on it. Never failed thru rain ner sleet ner snow.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

AKlaskan ex.I have owned 2 600's and 1 660 but the one I shot all the critters with was a Mdl 700 classic. It doesn't kick like the smaller guns and is easier to hold steady. That short stubby 350 cartridge performs way better than it looks. I suspect the secret is in the operating pressure. Anyhow a 660 in 350 was my favorite security gun for Salmon fishing. Not much heavier than my Mdl 629 S&W but much more powerful and easier to hit with.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

bill boyd,Thats one of the reasons I enjoy reading about his hunts. He doesn't just promote a product (scope, rifle), he always includes cartridges and bullets used.

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from AlaskanExile wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Del in KSSorry, I forgot the 350 Remington Magnum, almost as versatile as the 375 H&H. An outstanding middle-weight cartridge. Most "gun-nuts" can tell you how much the little 350 Remington 600's kick, but when pressed, most will admit to never having actually fired one!My brother has a small collection of 600's, 660's and Mohawks, I've shot most of those and I really like the 350, I just wish they had made a lefty-600 action, but sales were bad enough on the right-handed versions. I'll probably build a Montana 1999 in 350 Mag one of these days, and maybe a 6.5 just like it for sheep.Those little 600's are awesome, that much-maligned backward dog-leg bolt was perfect in that it wouldn't thump your knuckle when the rifle recoils. That 600 action is shorter and the trigger is farther forward(making the shortest possible rifle)of any other action.Remington had a great thing, but it was way ahead of it's time, and a few hard-headed, crusty old gunwriters killed it before it could really catch on. You sure don't see too many of those rifles on the used rack these days. I think that says something about it, people who know are hanging on to theirs.My wife shoots a 600 Mohawk in 308, which I had specially cut down and fitted for her. I'm now keeping my eyes open for a few more 600's for my young daughters that seem to grow a foot taller every time I turn around.

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from bill boyd wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Jim in Mo:I quoted Boddington correctly. Rifle Shooter, Sept/Oct. 2001 article titled "Which .375 for you?" p. 65"The faster .375s are more versatile and more powerful. Up close, with good bullets, they are very similar in apparent performance to the .416 Rigby and Remington, and much easier to use at longer range. But not everybody will be comfortable with the recoil."Professor Page gave much the same impression in his 1969 article about his .375 Weatherby. It's the 5K of energy that does the work.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Rocky Mtn Hunter,Are you still out there? I miss your posts? Drop us a line sometime.

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from Del in KS wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Ryan,Having grown up hunting deer in Florida's Ocala Nat'l Forest with a pack of Walker hounds I know what you mean about being proud of a spike buck. No doubt you are aware of the local custom that when you shoot a deer in front of somebody elses dogs they are supposed to get half the meat. My oldest brother (age 74)still lives in Altoona and maintains a pack of Walkers to this day. Eight years ago his youngest son shot a 160 pound 10 point (12 guage with 00 buck)that was the talk of the town. While big for Fla. that deer would be a cull in Kansas. The deer are much bigger here but IMO wild mature bucks are hard no matter where you hunt. I suspect many of the deer you see shot on film to sell a product are at least semi-tame. Heck, there's an Amish farmer in Macon Co. Mo. with a herd of Whitetails. Every year I drive by his farm in the fall and see wallhanger bucks that are tame as any Black angus cow.My friend Chuck Sheril still lives in Anchorage and always carried a 375 H&H when we hunted AK. I carried a 350 Rem mag w/250 gr bullets or a 300 Wby. w/200 gr partitions. All 3 worked well usually with a nice big hole all the way thru. A bull moose shot in the chest was the only critter that stopped one of my bullets. Chuch has hunted AK for over 30 years, shot a lot of game but no big bears.

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from Ralph wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Cleaning out a septic drain with a rifle bullet is down right ingenious. It seems like a plumbers snake would have been a better tool though. However, I do appreciate uses of "not-exactly what you should use" type ingenuity. My Dad used to use shirt hanger wire and pieces of an old shower shoe to repair an old car he drove. The hanger wire was used to replace parts on the carburetor and the shower shoe worked as gasket material. Also, one time he used kite string when the windshield wiper would only go one way. It required the passenger, me, to pull the wiper over for the second swipe on the windshield. Lack of funds or an open car parts or hardware store can sometimes can bring out the inventiveness in all of us.

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from Ryan wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I have to agree with the not as much meat damage assessment with lower velocites. People shoot deer with .50 cal muzzleloaders all the time and with 380 grain 12 gage slugs in states like Illinois etc. If the .375 works for you, by all means, be confident in a quick kill. The meat damage problem/complaints usually arise with magnum high velocity rounds with frangible bullets. Too many people key in on velocity where they think somehow they will be more accurate firing a round at 3200 fps that drops 0.1 inches less than one at 2900 fps. By chance, nothing lives around me here in northern FL, (Except the Elusive Skunk Ape), that my diminutive 7mm-08 wouldn't dispatch like lightning and quite frankly I'd be comfortable with a .243 or 30-30, however I would not disparage anyone for using a .375 or .338 etc. for large game to ensure a quick kill.

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from crm3006 wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

It seems we have strayed away from the topic of the .375 H&H, but to tie it in with the TSA (Totaly Stupid Agency), I bought mine in Loveland,CO. Had to fly home through Denver. The people at the airline counter were not satisfied that removing the bolt from a bolt action rifle made it unfireable! The local Gestapo Agent in Residence near the airline counter wanted to know if I could remove the barrel! Finally, after repeatedly quoting the airline's own regulations to them, I convinced everyone that my (as yet unfired) .375 was NOT going to escape from a locked case, self insert the bolt, find ammo somewhere, escape from the baggage compartment of a 737, and go on a killing spree! Sure enough, when I arrived in Houston,the bolt was still out of the rifle, case still locked, and no killing spree. After that experience, I have sworn off of flying with firearms. However, a trip or so ago when I was about to clear security (LOL), a very serious and dedicated servant of the Totaly Stupid Agency confiscated my new tube of toothpaste, as it was over the allowed limit! I am glad we are so safe on our airplanes.

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from AlaskanExile wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

A friend of mine shot a Kodiak Brown with his trusty 30-06 but didn't put it down (hit badly, not hunting with a guide). He then scared 10 years off his life looking for that wounded bear, which he never found in two days of searching.When he got back to town, he bought a 375 H&H and now hunts everything, even Sitka Deer with it. The 375 works for everything: moose, caribou, deer and of course, black and brown bears. You could say the same thing for the 338 Winchester, and I'm pretty sure that Dave has said so before, in his coulumn in Field and Stream.These middle-weight rifles like the 375, 9.3x62, 35 Whelen, 338 Federal up-through 338 Win are outstanding deer and elk cartridges. A larger bore does not automatically equate to more meat damage. If you choose lighter bullets at higher velocities and shoot game at close range, you could get some meat damage, but with velocities in the 22-2800 range it is not as likely with these middle-weights. They do their work with bullet mass, not velocity.My brother is going to shoot some deer with his 375 this year on our annual freezer-fill hunt (all does). I’m going to shoot one with my 45-70, and another with my Winchester 1895 chambered in 303 British.Last year, I shot two mule-deer with my 338, which I posted to this blog a few weeks ago. I was using 225 grain Federal Fusion ammo, and neither deer was very big, and neither had a lot of meat damage, certainly less than some I’ve seen hit with high-velocity rounds.

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from dale freeman wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Well I've never shot any of the cannons and have no desire to do so.Any thing I have to shoot with the kitchen sink at 2500 fps does not interest me.I'm perfectly content to leave African game to the Africans and enjoy the most beautiful habitat in the world.P.S.Earler i posted a comment about Remington and thier space looking guns and refused to buy one.How ever I did buy the Ruger M77,Hawkeye, 270 cal. and I love it.If you're not looking at the Ruger Hawkeye your missing a very fine rifle.

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from Ryan wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

The reason they don't show southwestern hunts for whitetail is probably the same reason they don't have TV shows with guys in regular Carhardt pants and a hand me down woodland camo T-shirt or blaze sweathirt studying deer sign and finding scrapes and actually hunting and having to hike in to their ambush site, gasp, maybe even over a mile. People now only care about antler size and weight of the deer, hence why there are a lot of articles about Iowa and Missouri bucks and Saskatchewan. Not that real hunting doesn't take place there. It's just that most of the clowns on TV are in heated shooting houses or on private ranches over feed plots with trail cameras and the latest fashion show worthy camo that the deer doesn't give a dang about. I'm prouder of my 100 pound cowhorn spike that I shot at 40 yards with my 7mm-08 one morning after canoeing in to the middle of Big Gum Swamp in North Florida where I set up "downstream" of where I knew someones hound dogs were running the deer off the dog hunt area and into the thick stuff than if I had shot some 10 point monster steroid buck over a pile of corn with my fancy scent lock clothes and special scent blocker etc. I fed my family and felt like I actually hunted. We need to get away from the shooting gallery trend where fat a**es get driven out to stands on golf carts and told they are hunting and get back to what our grandfathers did.

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from Zermoid wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Hehe, That sounds like Govt's normal workings, one dork says it has to be done a certain way and the next one tells you the opposite, standard operating procedure for most Govt agencies. That way they can always nail you for SOMETHING no matter how well you try to follow the "Rules"!

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from Dave Petzal wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

To Bernie Kuntz: There is no such thing as consistency in the enforcement of airline regs. It depends on the shift, the phase of the moon, and Derek Jeter's batting average. The regs says that ammo must be transported in either the factory container or in a container made for the transport of small arms ammunition, but half the TSA goons have not read the regs, and the other half doesn't care what they say.Try this: Store your ammo in the fragile, crummy factory boxes, but put the boxes inside a Cabela's Ammo Travel Case (Item number IJ 215353)). It costs $25, locks, doesn't take up a lot of space, and doubles nicely as a pistol case. That impresses the hell of out them.Coming back from Africa, my party checked its guns and ammo through with no problem, but with the hunters behind us in line, the SAA people insisted that the ammo be packed with the guns, and when US Customs saw that, they went ape. An airline jerk is an airline jerk, no matter where.

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from Bernie Kuntz wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Jim in Mo.--you are correct that I had my ammo for both rifles packed in factory boxes, although all my rounds for the .375 and my 7mm Weatherby were handloads. I didn't get any grief about the ammo. I cannot understand why one could not pack the ammo in hard, plastic boxes of the type sold by RCBS, Dillon and others but don't really know if that is acceptable to the "gun goons" at the airports. Anyone know the answer to that?

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from Silvertip wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I don't have a .375 but I do have a great elk rifle. It is a White .45 cal. muzzleloader that shoots 460 grain projectiles very well. I killed four elk with it. One round each.

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from Michael wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I have never shot a .375, but I do have a Ruger no 1 in 9.3x74 on the way. I probably won't shoot anything larger than Texas hogs (of which we have too many) with it, but the idea of using a classic cartridge that has been around many years is appealing.

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from hillbilly hunter. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Drive your Kenworth to the drive-in if you want, as for me ,I'll drive my new car. Shoot the 375 at deer at 75yd., as for me I'll just stick with my .308 Win.

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from JackBohm wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

While it is unrelated, I second Mr. Diehl's comments. Most of us will never see Africa, and of those that do see africa, we'll stick to more affordable plains game. On another note, how come F&S doesn't bother with tactics for those of us who live in the hills of South-Central MI- all rolling hills and woods here.

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from PDKMF wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Being a sucker for nostalgia I had to have a .375HH. Found a Model 70 Safari at a gun show for a a great price and in nearly new condition. The previous owner said it kicked too much to use. I mounted a Leupold 1.5-6 scope on it. With either factory ammo or handloads it shoots 1.25" or less all day. And while it's definitely not a varmint round the recoil is very manageable. I'ts a lot of fun to shoot!

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from Tom Obuhanych wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

This comment on the .375 H&H is verygood appraisal. I recently came back (June) from a Plains Game &Leopard Hunt in Namibia. I took myHusqvarna .358 Norma Maganum. It was ideal...near the .375 H&H but flatter shooting, more velocity...250 gr. bullets. I have a .375 H&H too, but opted for the .358 Norma magnum...perfect choice.Use enough gun. My PH formerly worked for the Conservation Dep't. and culled 21 Elephants over the years with his .375 H&H. There's always the old saw..."its where you hit them", Yes, of course...but in hunting, often there's not the perfect shot...and that's where "enough gun" is smart. Cape Buffalo is a class by iteself,,,I would opt for .458 or .50 calibers.Best Regards,Tom

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from Howard wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I use 286g woodleighs at 2350 fps in a 9.3x62mm, this will do for ANY plains game or soft skinned dangerous game out to 250y, who really needs more. If I was to run into a buffalo I would reach into my pocket for a solid and not hesitate to use it, but if I was after buffalo especially then I would rather have a .458 lott than the 375.....cheers

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from SD Bob wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

The last sentance or two is why I love reading Mr. Petzal! Funny as hell!I've never shot a .375 H&H but I have touched off the Ruger round which I'm told kicks a smidge more? If your used to shooting waterfowl? Then the recoil of either of these rounds will be of no consequense but then again ducks don't charge when hit poorly!

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from Scott wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Blue Ox:Nope. He didn't have it mounted per se. His wife yelled at us for letting him do it. Hell we couldn't NOT let him! He did however add to the legend of the .375 H&H being a s**t disturber!

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from Mark-1 wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I always thought the 375 HH suckered the American shooter because of its touted all around usefulness in one rifle. The theme always hits the USA hunter’s warm nerve, as it hits the African farmer that must shoot the variable sized vermin out of his fields on the cheap.The 375’s I’ve seen and shot are accurate and the recoil is manageable, but I always opted for the 458 for dangerous game work and always will given the choice. I will always opt for a 35 Whelen or a 338 as a medium bore given the choice.Some people don’t like pizza.

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from Blue Ox wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

So did you have the drain line mounted after all that?

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from Scott wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Weeelll sit right back and you'll hear a tale....ha. This is no kidding. The only experience I have ever had with the .375 H&H was a time long, long ago when a cousin of ours purchased one "just to say he had one". It sat in his cabinet for years until one fateful day when his septic tank drain line got stopped up. That poor s.o.b. lay prone not 25 yards from that awful hole and proceeded to clean it out. He was a slight built gentleman and I'm telling you he scooted backwards enough to scrape his belly quite a bit and spread natural fertilizer everywhere. That, sirs, is the only demonstration of a .375 I've ever seen. Now I'm sure that if you shot a large African Buffalo with one of those things it would kill it very dead having seen what it'll do to a septic tank drain line!Needless to say, do not try this at home. This happened many years ago when we were young and very foolish.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

bill boyd,I don't think Boddington meant what you read. He's a big fat bullet man. He loves 375 but .40 and bigger is better, regardless of speed.Daniel, Go get 'em. No such thing as overkill I say!PS, although I do like a few steaks for the effort.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Bernie,I like talking to people who've been there. One question. You say you took handloads to African hunt. Did you encounter any problems with the airlines or did you pack them in factory boxes knowing the dummies wouldn't know any better?

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from Bernie Kuntz wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

My experience with the .375 H & H is very limited compared with some hunters, but I like very much what I have seen.I shot a bison--two shots through the heart--with my .375 and the 300-grain Nosler Partition. Also shot about five animals in South Africa four years ago, the largest two being a blue wildebeast and a waterbuck. Both these animals are approximately the size of an elk. I used handloaded 270-grain Hornady Spire-Points and IMR-4064 powder. No complaints!I have to tell you folks about the rifle. I blundered upon it at Cabela's Gun Library in Sidney, NE ten years ago on my way to Mexico for a quail hunt. The rifle was custom built by Jim Botsford in the 1980s, .375 H & H Magnum on a pre-war Model 70 Winchester Super Grade action, Bastogne walnut stock, hand checkering, Pete Grisel skeleton buttplate and grip caps, express sights, 1-3/4X - 5X Leupold Vari-X-II in Leupold detachable mounts. Barrel had been cut back to 22-1/2" from the original 25". Previous owner, a big rancher from Colorado, said his wife shot one mule deer with the rifle. (With the skeleton buttplate I imagine it hammered her pretty badly! I slip on a tie-on leather pad when hunting with the rifle or shooting it over a bench, and do not find the recoil to be uncomfortable.) I had the trigger worked on, also had the late Dave Gentry mill a new set of swivel studs, as the odd-ball 3/8" size on the rifle wouldn't fit any swivels that I could find.In any case, the rifle is too pretty to drag around in an Alaskan rain forest after brown bear, and who knows if I will ever get to Africa again? But I intend to keep it and use it whenever is practical.

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from bill boyd wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

Professor Warren Page thought the .375 Weatherby was some pumpkins. If memory serves right he shot out 3 or so barrels on Capes and such.I think Warren knew what he wasabout! Even Boddington says he can't seperate the .375 Improveds from the .416's and such.I'll stand with Warren, even if they had trouble finding his heart!

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from Daniel wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

I have friend who hunts deer with his .375. A 270gr bullet leaves a 4 inch exit hole. We don't care about "over kill". He shoots a .375, my brother uses a .338, and I am going to us a .458WM. The .458 is just to see what happens and to say I did.

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from Jim in Mo. wrote 5 years 36 weeks ago

How come Finn Agaard did so well on buffalo?I believe the 270gr has a place if I were shooting lion or leopard.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 5 years 37 weeks ago

Ho hum. Another day in Africa, a land where 99.999% of American hunters will never hunt.Hey, Dave, when F&S writes those 'Streategies for Deer' articles, how come they're, every year, year after year, tips for getting a white-tailed deer in the middle of the midcontinental corn and wheat belt?F&S should do a southwestern desert or basin and range oriented article now and again. All that baloney about tree stands and feed lots and woody brakes between fields of grain isn't worth a pile of jackrabbit raisins in Arizona.

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from brian wrote 5 years 37 weeks ago

I look foward to buying a 375 h&h, underpowered or not I am a sucker for the classics.

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