The Bullet Bracket: What Is the Best All-Around Big-Game Cartridge?
In the spirit of March Madness, you get to make your picks for your favorite rifle cartridges
And the winner is…the .30/06.
It’s not what you’d call an upset, but here are a few good reasons why this old cartridge won. First, it’s proven itself in a lot more contests than this one—like two World Wars for starters. It’s also taken a hell of a lot of game all over the world, from farm country to the African plains. With different bullet weights, you can hunt just about anything with a .30/06. And with modern components, it’s a more relevant hunting cartridge than ever before.
But there are still a lot of great cartridges out there. We saw plenty of people rooting for their favorites even after they had been voted out. It just shows that no matter what you shoot, the best cartridges are often the ones that have successfully put meat in the freezer time and time again—while creating some lasting memories in the process.
So whether you prefer a .270, a .45-70, or anything in between, we hope you liked this contest. Thanks for sharing your opinions and helping us figure out the best all-around big game cartridge.
The popularity of the .30/06 over its 114 years of existence is nothing short of stupefying. But it’s not unwarranted. The cartridge is powerful enough to handle all but the heaviest dangerous game (and it can even do that in a pinch), yet its recoil is manageable for the average hunter. Are there better cartridges being made today? Maybe. But the .30/06 remains as good an all-around big-game rounds as ever.