The Best Caliber for Elk Hunting
For many hunters, going on an elk hunt is on their bucket list. It’s hard to top the majestic scenery of elk habitat; the sound of their bugling is unrivaled; and their meat is absolutely delicious.
As an ethical hunter, you’ll want to make sure that your elk harvest is as quick and humane as possible, and that’s a part of your process that starts long before you set foot in the field.
It starts with selecting the right caliber, cartridge, and bullet for the job. An elk is a big animal, and you have to prepare for that accordingly. Depending on what you normally use, your trusty deer rifle may not be up to the job.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the best calibers on the market today for elk hunting.
What is the Best Caliber for Elk Hunting?
Determining “the best caliber” for any kind of hunting is subjective and will vary from hunter to hunter, but the .338 Winchester Magnum takes our top spot for elk.
The .338 Win Mag cartridge was made for the challenges of big game like elk, and it is capable of taking on that challenge and defeating it. With the right heavy-grain bullet, you can be confident that your projectile is traveling faster than most comparable loads on the market and will deliver the devastating punch needed for a quick and ethical harvest.
Other Top Calibers for Elk Hunting
If you don’t have a rifle in .338 Win Mag, don’t feel like you’ve got to run out and buy a new gun. Of course, that’s certainly an option and we wholeheartedly support that decision, it’s not your only option. There are plenty of other great calibers out there for elk hunting.
7mm Remington Magnum
As we mentioned, sometimes it all comes down to the proper bullet selection, and that couldn’t be more true than with the reliable 7mm Remington Magnum. If you load a 7mm Rem Mag cartridge with a heavy bullet that is tough and designed to stay together, then it becomes a low-recoil caliber that is hard to beat when it comes to elk.
It has been said that there’s not a single big game animal in North America that cannot be felled by a .30-06 bullet, and that’s no exaggeration. The .30-06 was the caliber of choice for hunters of all kinds for most of the 20th century. Even though newer calibers have come on the market, the .30-06 has remained a faithful standby that is certainly more than capable of harvesting an elk.
The .270 Winchester meets the three A’s: accurate, affordable, and available. Hunters have been using the well-rounded .270 Winchester to bring down all sorts of wild game for decades – and that includes plenty of elk. Therefore, there’s no reason that you can’t take your hunting rifle that you use for other pursuits and put it to good use on an elk. A .270 is right at home on an elk hunt as well as in pursuit of deer, hogs, sheep, and more.
Our Favorite Elk Hunting Rifles
Winchester Model 70
Winchester’s Model 70 was introduced in 1936, but don’t let its age fool you. The rifle has long held the moniker of “The Rifleman’s Rifle,” and for good reason. It’s a solid choice for hunters or all ages and is definitely appealing if you’re a “blued steel and wood” kind of person when it comes to guns.
Remington Model 700
Since its introduction in 1962, the Remington Model 700 has been a smashing success. In fact, more Model 700s have been sold than any other bolt-action rifle in history. That’s quite an achievement, and it would be right at home on your elk hunt.
Elk hunting can be an expensive endeavor, and not everyone has a bunch of money to spend. With the Ruger American rifle, you don’t have to. Ruger’s American line of rifles provide solid performance and value at a price point that won’t break the bank. Just because it’s less expensive doesn’t mean it’s less effective.
Tips for Your Next Elk Hunting Trip
There are a lot of different things you need to keep in mind and give some consideration as you plan your next elk hunting trip. While this is far from exhaustive, here are a few tips to help you plan.
Mentality is Key – Keep a Good Attitude
Elk hunting can be tough. It’s not uncommon for hunters to put in long, hard hours for days on end only to come home empty-handed. Don’t get discouraged. If you keep a good attitude about the hunt, then you can enjoy yourself no matter what the outcome. Remember: plenty of hunting memories are made without ever firing a shot.
Know the Area
Because of the challenges of elk hunting, it’s very beneficial if you scout the area beforehand or have a hunting partner or guide who knows the area very well. This will help you focus your efforts on the most likely areas for success.
One of the best parts of an elk hunt is hearing them bugle. If you’re wearing traditional hearing protection, that part of the hunt is impeded and diminished. Hunting with a suppressor will obviously make your shots quieter so that you can hear the bugling without sacrificing your hearing when you take a shot, but there’s more to it than that. A suppressor will also reduce recoil, which helps make your shot more accurate.
You’re going to cover a lot of ground on an elk hunt, so make sure you’re prepared for the long days. This means dressing in layers, having sturdy boots, and bringing good binoculars. Of course, there’s plenty more to bring, but those three are essential.
Speaking of essentials, hydration is the most important of all. Nothing will end your hunt faster than getting dehydrated and being unable to physically continue the hunt. Water is key, but drinks that replenish electrolytes are also a good thing to bring with you.
Enjoy the Sounds of Suppressed Hunting – Get a Suppressor Today!
Hunting for an elk with a suppressor is definitely a unique experience and you should totally try it out if you haven’t.
If you’re ready to take an elk with a suppressed rifle, then get ahold of us here at Silencer Central today, and let’s make it a reality.
Silencer Central is licensed to sell suppressors in all 42 states where they are legal. We’ve been doing this all day, every day for more than 15 years, and have sold countless thousands of suppressors in that time.
Let us handle the entire purchase process for you and even deliver your suppressor right to your front door once it’s been approved. It really doesn’t get any better than that, so what are you waiting for? Call us now!