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Well that's a loaded question. But I'll bite. It's all about the rifle for me. Ok - so both rifles are the same? Hmmmm ....
Am I home here in Virginia? Simple - 30-06. Chasing elk or bear out west? OK - 338. But - if I was "stuck" with my 30-06 I wouldn't be upset.

Jay
 

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Hmmmmm..... with out having any other provisions other that the 2 calibers and having both myself I would go with the -06. Why??? well versitility, you can load light and fast for varmits, mid range for big game and target also hot and heavy for larger game. All without having the mule kick... not to mention the factory ammo avalibility, when in a bind just about every shop and store carries 30-06 ammo. With a little bit of work at the bench you can easily work up a very accurate load for what every you want to shoot, that and with the price of reloading supplies it is a little cheaper to shoot. Thus in having the choice of only one of these calibers I would go with the 30-06 everytime.... but I really like my win mag when I want to really reach out and KNOCK something down!
 

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.30-06 or .338 Win Mag

You really need some boundary conditions.

Both will fill the bill for most hunting conditions, although the .338 will get the nod in big bear country. If you live and hunt in the South, and a 180 pound whitetail is about the biggest animal you would normally see, the .30-06 is more than up to the task. AND you can buy plenty of cheap ammo to feed it.

I personally prefer the .338 for any animal over 500 pounds - not that the .30-06 won't kill one. Animals over 500 pounds just die harder and you may have trouble finding it without the better blood trail the larger diameter bullet provides. At longer ranges, the .338 will also have better killing impact and, obviously, more energy.

If you like to shoot a lot, the .30-06 will be easier on both the shoulder and the wallet. And don't believe it can't do a fine job of killing out at long range with the proper bullet and shot placement.

However, if it's one or the other, and you live in big country with large animals and critters that can eat you, the .338 Win Mag would definitely be my choice. :)
 

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Groan....

winbag338, I realize you're a relatively new member, but these types of debates are prolific. Honestly, I'm not sure if this particular debate has already taken place, but probably something close to it if you do a root search in the rifles and cartridges forum with your thread title (search is upper right on the screen).

We don't want to stifle discussion. However, when posing such a question, give us more info to help you out. What are your uses for these two? Target competition, deer, elk, moose, big bears, African game? Are you recoil-tolerant? Do you reload? Is it the only rifle you'll buy in the next 10 years?

Since I don't know what your intended uses are, I'd have to say the 338 Win Mag since it will handle ground squirrels to eland. The 30-06 will, also!
 

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Since I don't know what your intended uses are, I'd have to say the 338 Win Mag since it will handle ground squirrels to eland. The 30-06 will, also!
I'm gonna have to say you would get better "bounce" and acrobatics out of ground squirrels and prairie dogs with a 338 so it would be my choice:D.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm gonna have to say you would get better "bounce" and acrobatics out of ground squirrels and prairie dogs with a 338 so it would be my choice:D.
Thats funny. We allways get the 06 vs 7mm, or some other thread with equally matched calibers, so i thought mixing alittle would be interesting. I dont want bounderies with this one because most of us reload and many of us have moved in our lifetime so its hard to make restrictions of set bounderies of game encountered or location. For me its easy, I reload my 338 with a 225gr moveing at just over 2600fps thus topping the 06 and with only a tad bit more recoil. The biggest advantage is when it gets scarry i can load a 250 to around 2800fps( of course with more recoil) but then again its scarry.
 

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For me the .338 would be a waste in the lower 48 but to each his own.
 

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the figures speak for themselves.whats the go?pretty useless sort of discussion i thought!!!.did i miss something?----i think you should qualify your question !!-sorry ,but i dont get what you are trying to answer.
 

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The 338WM is a step up in power from the Old War Horse, but for the vast majority of game on the North American continent, it's more than is absolutely needed. If you're hunting moose in a place where big bears might eat you, the 338 brings a little more to the table. Although, a well-constructed, properly-placed bullet from either cartridge will have largely the same effect on Bullwinkle or Yogi. As for making Rocky go flying through the air, neither is particularly good with heavy bullets...that's why we have varmint cartridges. :)

With all that being said, most of the guns we shoot are more powerful than we "need", for the hunting we do, but that's what many think of as added insurance. In that sense, the 338WM is even more insurance than the '06, when the game is large and/or dangerous.
 

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I like to shoot pigs with my .338. You don't have to look very long to find them! :eek:
 

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Which would you choose?
Well, having owned both, and with the consideration I now own neither, I'd own the .30-06 in a featherweight/mtn rifle configuration if I lived in the lower 48, and had to chose.

If you're hunting in a spot where bears, as in grizzly bears, are a problem, the '06 with a 180+gr bullet would be OK. But there are spots in the Rockies where you might feel better with a .338.

+/-

It's significant to note that the .30-06 is the standard for comparison for the vast majority of hunting situations. There is a reason for that. ;)
 

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"What would it waste?" - Powder, lead, recoil. I figure the .30-06 is "enough gun" in the lower 48 and the .338 is "more than enough gun" in the lower 48 and as stated it's just my opinion. I'm not going to get into the whole I might run into a grizzly bear in the Rockies because if that if the case then we get back to square one and the .338 is "barely enough gun" and I'd want a .375 H&H minimum or better yet an FN SLP full of dangerous game slugs. If the idea is overkill then shoot what you want - that is the beauty of choice.
For me, all around, a .30-06 with Nosler Partitions is the perfect balance of killing power and recoil in the lower 48.
 

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I own both and have carried a sporterized 1903-A3 since i was 14. Since I hunt elk and want to hunt big bears, moose, carribu ect a Ruger in .338 wm was added.

Some of the positives of the boomer.
It's lighter than the 03-A3
Provides similar trajectory with a lots heavier bullet
Recoil isn't bad
Will shot through to the vitals from any angle on the animals I entend on hunting.
It's a cool looking "new" rifle for me.
An excuse to visit Cabelas to buy new stuff.
Being over gunned is better than the alternative.

Negatives of the .338
Reloading components (especially bullets) are more expensive and I usually face poor selection.
Spending too much money at cabelas buying new stuff.
Having to put up with teasing from my buddies about the elephant gun.

Did i need the .338? probably not since 30-06's has been doing the job for me the last 30 some years. But at least I'm ready for this new tougher breed of elk I keep reading about in the hunting magazines. :D
 

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The 30/06 case, without a doubt! But it needs to be necked up to .358. Heck, let's call it a .35 Whelen. ;) I shoot a 200gr TSX @ 2874 FPS and Hornady now loads a 200gr Superformance at 2910 FPS. Pretty darn efficient is what I'll call it! :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The 30/06 case, without a doubt! But it needs to be necked up to .358. Heck, let's call it a .35 Whelen. ;) I shoot a 200gr TSX @ 2874 FPS and Hornady now loads a 200gr Superformance at 2910 FPS. Pretty darn efficient is what I'll call it! :D
Now thats thinking. Another caliber that would be a better choice then the 06( provided your figures are within SAAMI specs) and at not alot more recoil. However you can still load the 338 hotter if needed.
 

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The 30/06 case, without a doubt! But it needs to be necked up to .358. Heck, let's call it a .35 Whelen. ;)
Ah, the part where I no longer owned a .30-06, or a .338. And that I swapped the .375 H&H that I bought many years ago, when Remington came out with a CDL Whelen.

I have two Whelen's, a 7600, and a CDL. Both weigh less than a .30-06 in the same rifle.

With heavier bullets, they drop elk like the bigger blasters.

No, they are not .338/.375 class power, not exactly. But I came to realize, quite a few years ago, that Keith might actually be right about bullet weight and caliber. Big fat heavy bullets, moving 2500fps+ or so, are pretty effective.
 
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