Best Elk Hunting Ammunition For 7mm mag, .300 WSM and 30-06

What is the best ammo for a .300 WSM, 7mm mag, and 30-06, when it comes to hunting elk?

This question can be so subjective but I will try to answer by picking the ammo that I personally use. Let’s look at each caliber separately starting with the .300 Winchester Short Magnum.


The .300 Winchester Short Magnum is the caliber that I hunt elk with. This choice came after hunting elk with a .270 caliber rifle for years and with great success. I never lost an elk that I had shot with the .270 using the 150 grain bullet. What made me change my rifle was having to let really good bulls walk because they were at 200 yards plus range. Most all my elk were taken at 100 yards or closer with the .270.


Good choices for .300 WSM ammo would be in the 150 and 180 grain bullets. The 150’s shoot a little flatter and the 180 has more velocity and energy out at 300 yards. It is a tradeoff it seems. The 150 has an energy of 1861 ft-lbs at 300 yards and the 180 has 2382 ft –lbs at 300 yards. Trajectory shows that the heavier bullet drops no more than an inch more than the 150 grain bullet at 300 yards. So my choice would be the 180 grain bullet.


The bottom line is to choose your ammo and practice , practice , practice. These long shots are hard to make and it isn’t fair to these magnificent animals to take a chance on wounding them.


Next we will look at the 7mm Magnum. Good choices for 7mm mag ammo would be the 150 grain and 175 grain bullet. The same is true of 7mm mag ammo and .300 WSM ammo. The 150 grain bullet will be flatter shooting but at 300 yards it beats the 175 grain bullet by 1 inch. The 175 retains more energy and velocity than the 150 grain bullet. Again, I would go for the heavier grain bullet.


Last the 30-06.  The 30-06 is one of the most versatile rifle calibers out there. It doesn’t shoot quite as flat as the .300 WSM or 7mm mag. For this reason I would choose the following ammo…….. 165 grain Accutip boat tail by Remington. This will give you enough bullet weight retention, energy and velocity and be flatter shooting.


Some people really get hung up on the ammo and go into reloading. That can have its advantages but I stick to factory loads and my favorite brands would be Remington and Hornaday. Boat tail bullets are flat shooting and Nosler partitions are good for lighter gains because they hold together for greater impact upon striking the target.

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