brown bear guns

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I've killed several deer with a 460 Weatherby.  You won't hear any complaints from either me or the deer.

Interestingly I have a deep desire to hunt Alaska's brown bear and just can't imagine not using a proper rifle, 338 and up.  My research and planning tell me that a good quality brown bear hunt will run north of $25,000.  In light of that the slight cost of a good bear rifle is insignificant. 

Hunting the noble brown bear with a bow is an interesting discussion item but I will only say that just because it can be done does not mean it should be done.

Good Luck on your bear hunts.

I am in the same category as Fishmandan. My plans are in the making for a coastal brown bear Alaska hunt. So, I have been researching to find the gun and whether the really big boomers are necessary. My question was answered in an email from writer Chuck Hawks. He has always pointed out that sectional density is the most important factor when choosing. In his most recent email to me he pointed out that the 220 grain .300 Weatherby has a sectional density of .331, that a .416 has a sectional density of .330 and that a .300 .375 H&H has a sectional density of only .301. So, I am going with my s/s .300 Weatherby. By the way, custom loaders I have discussed this with suggest .300 Weatherby with .200 grain ttsx and .210 grain Berger.

Dad once stood in the door of a tent yelling "go away big bear, go away". The bear disappeared. Next morning we awoke to a battered ice chest. It had been placed under a cement camp ground table with accompanying seating. None the less, we had no breakest. The bear eat well but we did not. That was a little brown bear that eat our breakfast and lunch and dinner. Best medicine for a bear - a big gun maybe the blast will scare him/her away. Big rifles of 300 WIN MAG or better, heavy bullets, I'm good to go. For backup the Tarus Judge 3 inch chamber with first shot 45 LC then flares. Light'em up (the bear), then signal for help, maybe somebody will find my remains. I won't be bear chum. I don't like spiders, snakes or bears and in that order. I hunt them ,I shoot them, and I make sure they are dead.

My suggestion is to get the largest caliber rifle YOU CAN SHOOT ACCURATELY.  Just because someone toats a .458 Winchester Magnum doesn't mean they can shoot it worth a damn and if you can't shoot it ACCURATELY you sure as hell can't kill anything humainly.  Sure the .458 Winchester Magnum will kill anything but only if the bullet is put in the proper place other wise the animal suffers and just might decide to make you pay for it's pain and suffering. 

I normally hunt with a .338-.378 Weatherby Magnum and last year I bought a .458 Winchester Magnum and hunted with that.  I will tell you these are big powerful rifles and can hurt you if you don't have the rifle in the right position.  There are plenty of people can't handle the recoil from these two and alot who can just can't shoot them accurately.  I am lucky to be able to do both and hunted with and own many magnum rifles.  Please don't think I'm trying to say I'm better than anyone because I'm not.  I like magnum calibers and own a few.  When it comes to hunting deer I've killed them with a .270 Winchester and they were just as dead as the ones I've shot with a .7mm Remington Mag, .300 Winchester, .338 Winchester Mag, .338-.378 Weatherby Mag, .375 H&H Mag, or even the .458 Winchester Mag.  It all comes down to the simple questions of can you shoot the rifle accurately, can you handle the recoil, and are you confident with the rifle which will be answered by the first two of these questions.  You have to be honest with yourself, can you handle the recoil and shoot the rifle accurately.  If you say no to either pick something else.  Sure a .300 Winchester or Weatherby Magnum will kill a grizzly bear with the proper bullet and shot having been placed properly but why not have more power on your side if you can?  In the case of hunting something that is pretty grumpy, especially if wounded, and will kill, mame, or even have you for a snack more can be and maybe considered better. 

Also keep in mind there are some guides who will not let hunters hunt grizzly or brown bears with any caliber smaller than a .338 Winchester Magnum.  I strongly suggest you ask about this before you show up and find out when it's too late.  As for hunting grizzly, brown, or even polar bears with a bow and arrow there are people who have done it.  I even seen a guy hunting mountain goats with a bow and arrows.  Personally I don't and won't because in my opinion there is just too much that might go wrong and that's the last thing I want to happen on a hunt of a life time.  Remember Murphy, he's a hunter's "friend" also. 

Eagle Rider:
Arrows harvest game by exangunation, the animal (in this case a largest NA preaditor) dies because it bleeds to death.  That being said, I don't know of anyone who has hunted bear with a bow that wasn't backed up by someone with a large rifle.  A hunting arrow can weigh as much as 600 or 700 grains and travels well under 300 fps.  Its not going to break a shoulder or a spine on a large bear.  A typical "brownie" bullet on the other hand weights 180 - 250 grs for most 30 cal rifles.  It travels at speeds approacing 3000 fps and relies on kinetic energey to do its work.  This is the shock of someting being whalluped by a piece of metal that is deigned to provide max energy transfer while retaining its weight.  It will break bone and liquify vitals as it does it work.  Your call what to saddle up with, but I'd be taking my Mk V chambered in 300 Wby Mag with a Barnes Tripple Shock 180 gr.  If It was costal bears or kodiak island browns, i'd surely have my 454 Casull in a shoulder holster as well.  There's a great article in this months American Hunter on thsi very topic called adrift in the land of bears.  You should read it.  Here's the link:


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