Ask Dave: Is the Ruger No. 1 in .325 the right rifle for elk and mule deer?

Dear Dave, I have read your recent articles regarding the .325 WSM and the Browning A-Bolt. I am planning an elk and mule deer hunt out West in the next year or two and had been thinking about the Ruger No. 1 in 300 Win. Mag. I am not sure if Ruger offers the No. 1 in .325 WSM yet. After reading your articles, I had thought about the No. 1 in .325 WSM. What are your thoughts about the Ruger and the .325 for elk and mule deer? Thanks for your advice.--Jim Stewart

Jim, My experience with the Ruger No. 1 is that it's a very fussy and erratic rifle. I've seen some that shoot extremely well, but usually they've been to the gunsmith before they would do it. As for the .325, it's way too much for mule deer, but just about right for elk. Its only drawback as an elk round is that once in a while you get a long shot at an elk, and unless your .325 will shoot 200-grain bullets accurately, it can be a problem at long distances.

If it were me, and I was going to hunt both species, I'd get a .270--perfect for mule deer, and with good bullets it will kill an elk handily. --DP