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Discussion Starter #1
I hike a lot in black bear, moose, and cougar country and I need a .357 Mag round that will do the trick. I have some 125gr golden sabres and some 140gr hornady leverevolution (pointed red tips) at the moment but what else should I be looking at for walking in the woods rounds? Maybe a hunting load would be better? I need something that's got a better chance of going through a bear or moose's skull. any suggestions? what do you carry in the woods?
 

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I'd use a good, hard 158gr cast bullet in the Keith SWC style over a very healthy charge of WW296.

You want penetration, and that's something the SD bullets will be lacking in big animals.

Personally, I'd prefer .44 Magnum, but if a .357 was all I had ...
 

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I can actually comment on this one now, I actually worry about boars. So I have some 158gr wadcutters. I still worry about over penetrations against Boars so the heavy grain FMJs sound best IMO for what you are worried about.
 

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You don't mention what make/model firearm you're carrying but I'd suggest some caution using the monster 357 loads in a light frame (j,k,l) handgun.

I've had excellent luck with the 44 mag. version of the Remington Jacketed Soft Point round. I buy the bulk bullets and reload, but if you don't reload, the factory ammo uses the same bullet.

Hoss
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It's a Ruger sp101, I'm thinking about going with the 180gr flat nose grizzly. You think those will be fine out of that gun? it's either the grizzly or buffalo bore.

357 MAG
 

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The .357 Gold Saber is actually a medium-velocity load. I'd stick with the 140's of your two current loads. Not knowing what kind of gun you're using, I'd suggest a 158gr JSP of some kind unless your gun is big enough to handle the 180gr thumpers.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
the sp101 should definitely be able to handle a 180gr buffalo bore. I just ordered 2 boxes from cabelas they were on sale. I'll shoot a box to see how they feel and how they are accuracy wise and I'll save a box for the cylinder and 2 speed loaders when I hike.
 

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the sp101 should definitely be able to handle a 180gr buffalo bore.
Oh yeah, so will the others Tim mentions on his web sight. :wink:

We had a chance to try some of his heavy .45 Colt loads a number of years ago, before they were on the market, Tim makes some great ammo.
 

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158 gr Keith style Semi-Wadcutters if you reload, 158 gr JSP (not hollow point) if you don't.

Of course the Buffalo Bores are also quite sufficient.

Bill
 

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You don't mention what make/model firearm you're carrying but I'd suggest some caution using the monster 357 loads in a light frame (j,k,l) handgun.

I've had excellent luck with the 44 mag. version of the Remington Jacketed Soft Point round. I buy the bulk bullets and reload, but if you don't reload, the factory ammo uses the same bullet.

Hoss
Hoss, I knew that a J frame was not the ideal platform for heavy 357 loads. I did not realize there were concerns over K and L frame. Is this just the 180 and heavier bullets or does it work it's way down into 158g territory. I don't load many rounds with heavy bullets at higher pressure limits, but I do load a few for hunting and carry during hunting season. I even loaded, tried and carry in J frame during hunting season. This is not a round that I shoot a lot. I am staying within published load data. Am I ok? What about with the GP?
 

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Let me tell you about a guy in AK who was jumped by a griz. He emptied his .357 into the bear's mouth as it gnawed on his head. The bear shook its head and walked away, never to be found--dead, wounded, or otherwise.

For defense against big, dangerous animals you have to break bones. Save one hollowpoint for the last round, the one you put into your mouth as that bear is gnawing on your head. (Don't forget to file down the front sight; it will chip your teeth!)

But if you insist on any pistol as defense against big, pissed-off animals, get the heaviest, hardest bullet your cartridge can handle. I packed Speer shilouette bullets in my .41 Mag when I carried in AK.

Yeah, big game can be taken with a handgun, but they don't usually stop 5-600 pounds of fury that bursts out of the bushes.
 

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Spent 7 years in AK...pistol for bear or moose? Ruger Redhawk .44 mag with the longer barrel will help.:yup:
 

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I'm willing to venture that VT bears aren't much different than MN bears...in which case, my load of choice in my 4" GP100 when bombing around bear country is a 170gr Remington Castcore. Since black bears are pretty much non-aggressive (with the exception of a sow with cubs), it's more for my peace of mind than anything else....but I do know someone who took a good sized black bear with this load out of a 6" .357, and it worked effectively.

Moose, however...man, I wouldn't want to tangle with an angry moose with nothing but a pistol...
 

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Missed em

Let me tell you about a guy in AK who was jumped by a griz. He emptied his .357 into the bear's mouth as it gnawed on his head. The bear shook its head and walked away, never to be found--dead, wounded, or otherwise.

For defense against big, dangerous animals you have to break bones. Save one hollowpoint for the last round, the one you put into your mouth as that bear is gnawing on your head. (Don't forget to file down the front sight; it will chip your teeth!)

But if you insist on any pistol as defense against big, pissed-off animals, get the heaviest, hardest bullet your cartridge can handle. I packed Speer shilouette bullets in my .41 Mag when I carried in AK.

Yeah, big game can be taken with a handgun, but they don't usually stop 5-600 pounds of fury that bursts out of the bushes.
I agree that a handgun is awfully anemic for bear but I would think the AK guy missed altogether actually. I have seen guys just pull the trigger straight up in the air when jumping deer, folks get loopy under extreme stress like being bear bait!

I would want a 200 grain bullet at a min. of 1200 FPS for BLACK bear and a 12 Ga. slug backed up by a 500 S&W for Griz + similarly armed buddy would also be nice to have along as well.:bier:
 

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I agree that a handgun is awfully anemic for bear but I would think the AK guy missed altogether actually. I have seen guys just pull the trigger straight up in the air when jumping deer, folks get loopy under extreme stress like being bear bait!

I would want a 200 grain bullet at a min. of 1200 FPS for BLACK bear and a 12 Ga. slug backed up by a 500 S&W for Griz + similarly armed buddy would also be nice to have along as well.:bier:
That's a good thought, except for the bear blood on the guy. No doubt ole griz had a headache and sore mouth.:rofl:
 
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