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MidCoast

Recommendations for 30-06 ammo for deer hunting?

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I plan on hunting in an area that permits the usage of 30-06 rifle for deer.  With that being said, what ammo do you recommend for deer hunting for 30-06?  

I would prefer something with minimum led exposure on deer meat and minimum expansion upon contact with a deer. 

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2 hours ago, MidCoast said:

I plan on hunting in an area that permits the usage of 30-06 rifle for deer.  With that being said, what ammo do you recommend for deer hunting for 30-06?  

I would prefer something with minimum led exposure on deer meat and minimum expansion upon contact with a deer. 

I just bought an '06 myself this year. There is not a caliber with a better bullet selection than what you have. The only thing is that it seems different ammo can have a pretty wide range of accuracy from gun to gun so you might need to try several different types to see which your gun likes best. 

 

150 grain bullets seem to be the most popular choice for deer. My  gun shoots the Hornady ammo very well. 

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I believe you can get solid copper bullets in factory ammo.  And if you can, it will be a premium cartridge so I wouldn't be afraid of poor performance after impact.

The biggest thing is finding the one that shoots well in your rifle.  Maybe state your rifle make and the yardage you think would be most common distance for a shot.  If someone has the same make that has figured it out, it could get you closer quicker.

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I am actually looking for ammunition with minimum expansion close to FMJ so there is minimum damage to the meat.  Expansion means less tracking but a good chunk of the deer's meat is also destroyed. 

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1 hour ago, smurfy said:

 I use 30-06 220 grain

Oddly a many years ago I bought some 30.06 Federal Premium 220 g boat tails which I'm not sure they even make any more? That was in my younger, I need to have the biggest baddest bullet in the woods years!! "Pound chest" ;)

I saw one of the largest Doe's I have ever taken across a swamp may be 80 yards out. But the cross hair on her chest and let one fly. She just stead there! I'm like how could I have missed? :crazy:  Put the scope in the same spot and gave her another and she dropped. When I skun her out she had 2 side by side holes about an inch about.  I now shoot either Fed 150g or 180g. and the seem to drop pretty well with them.

Unless you take a chancy neck shoot, not sure how you are going to 100% not do some damage to meat, other then make a good first shot and put them down and not shoot them full of holes? :(

 

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8 hours ago, MidCoast said:

I am actually looking for ammunition with minimum expansion close to FMJ so there is minimum damage to the meat.  Expansion means less tracking but a good chunk of the deer's meat is also destroyed. 

Sorry for the misunderstanding. Not sure what to recommend for that. 

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8 hours ago, leech~~ said:

Oddly a many years ago I bought some 30.06 Federal Premium 220 g boat tails which I'm not sure they even make any more? That was in my younger, I need to have the biggest baddest bullet in the woods years!! "Pound chest" ;)

I saw one of the largest Doe's I have ever taken across a swamp may be 80 yards out. But the cross hair on her chest and let one fly. She just stead there! I'm like how could I have missed? :crazy:  Put the scope in the same spot and gave her another and she dropped. When I skun her out she had 2 side by side holes about an inch about.  I now shoot either Fed 150g or 180g. and the seem to drop pretty well with them.

Unless you take a chancy neck shoot, not sure how you are going to 100% not do some damage to meat, other then make a good first shot and put them down and not shoot them full of holes? :(

 

Shoot it in the neck??? There goes the neck roast!!:(:cry:

I'd rather have to trim a little extra meat the injure one and never find it or have to track it half the day. Right behind the front shoulder!

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I have had very good luck shooting both 150's and 180's out of my old Remington...Most drop in tracks or very short track job...

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10 hours ago, leech~~ said:

Oddly a many years ago I bought some 30.06 Federal Premium 220 g boat tails which I'm not sure they even make any more? That was in my younger, I need to have the biggest baddest bullet in the woods years!! "Pound chest" ;)

I saw one of the largest Doe's I have ever taken across a swamp may be 80 yards out. But the cross hair on her chest and let one fly. She just stead there! I'm like how could I have missed? :crazy:  Put the scope in the same spot and gave her another and she dropped. When I skun her out she had 2 side by side holes about an inch about.  I now shoot either Fed 150g or 180g. and the seem to drop pretty well with them.

Unless you take a chancy neck shoot, not sure how you are going to 100% not do some damage to meat, other then make a good first shot and put them down and not shoot them full of holes? :(

 

maybe that doe was flabbergasted you actually hit her!!!!!!!!!!!!!:grin::D:P

1 hour ago, Moon Lake Refuge said:

Remington 30-06 springfield 150 gr. Core lokt has never let me down.  Not sure about expansion but a good shot through the lungs doesn't hit much meat as long as you stay behind the shoulders.

i use the core lokt also only in 220 grain. tough to find them though!!!!!!!! usually need to hit cabelas for them!

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220 grain is a heavy bullet.  I shoot a 200 grain bonded bullet out of my 300 Win Mag.  I chose it because it shoots the best from my gun and I was looking for a moose and caribou round.  The controlled expansion designed for heavier skinned game keeps it from expanding a ton on light skinned game like deer.

If I keep that bullet away from bone it doesn't do too much damage.  Less than a 12 gauge slug, 150 grain 308, and 7 mm rounds that have I had to work around.

I do prefer head or neck shots though.  Practice helps when it comes to that. ;)

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 Your going to want something with expansion.  Your looking for a bullet that can do that but retains its weight.   You'll find that in an all copper construction bullet like Barnes Tipped Triple Shock X bullets.   Your meat damage will be to a minimum because you don't have bullet fragments plus along with that zero lead spread through the meat.    Weight bullets, lots can be discussed there, I use 180 grain.

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On 10/8/2017 at 4:32 PM, MidCoast said:

I plan on hunting in an area that permits the usage of 30-06 rifle for deer.  With that being said, what ammo do you recommend for deer hunting for 30-06?  

I would prefer something with minimum led exposure on deer meat and minimum expansion upon contact with a deer. 

Prior to buying my '06 I hunted with a Marlin 30-30 lever for about 20 years and any deer I shot fell pretty much where they were standing. I hunt in northern MN so most of my shots are less than 50yds. I always wanted to get a 30-06 or .270 bolt action and finally got my opportunity for a good buy. When I bought my '06 I bought Winchester 180gr silver tip simply because that is what my father used. The first two deer I shot with it, didn't drop in their tracks but forced me to track them down for about 50 - 75 yards. My shot placement was good but I noticed that the exit wounds were not much larger than the entrance wounds. 

I talked to a co-worker that is pretty sharp on bullet types, and he told me I was using the wrong bullet. He said, downsize to 150gr soft point, Nozzler partition, or Core Lokt. The smaller weight bullet will stand a better chance of expanding upon impact on the deer and the recoil would be noticeably less. I bought a box of Federal 150gr Core Lokt PSP and haven't had to follow a deer since. From my reading this cartridge has been a staple for many years. 

Edited by BobT

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