Best Rifle for a Black Bear Hunt

Discussion in 'Large-Bore/Small-Bore Rifle/Shotgun' started by skb150, Jul 16, 2006.

  1. skb150

    skb150 New Member

    Feb 8, 2006
    I booked a hunt for the Fall of 2007. The hunt will be from a ground stand over bait. Most shots I assume will be under 100 yards, through some brush. I was told anything in the .30 cal range will work. I have talked to others that said they took bear with .243 on up. My current choices are 25-06, 30-06, black powder 50 cal. or slug gun. What do you think would be best? What would be load? Black powder is interesting, but only one shot. My guide said "From a ground stand made of brush, things can get interesting in a hurry. Sometimes you get the bear, sometimes the bear gets you."
  2. Marlin

    Marlin *TFF Admin Staff Chief Counselor*

    I have taken black bear with a Marlin 336 lever .30-30 several times.

    At this age, however, 70, I think I would prefer the .30-06. I have a Browning lever .30-06 that would fit the bill perfectly. Over the years I have learned and used the .30-06, with various bullets and weights, for deer and bear both without any problems.

    Just one opinion of an ole man who loves to hunt.

  3. stash247

    stash247 New Member

    Oct 18, 2003
    Central Texas
    SKB, from a tree blind over bait, whatever you own will work just fine!
    Friend of mine, some years ago, killed an 11'6" Brown Bear, in Alaska, with a .54 Santa Fe Hawken, on the ground, at about 30 Yards. His Name is Wesley Kyle. It was then the second, now, I understand, the third, largest Brown ever killed, by a frontstuffer, and this is B&C info.
    A black bear, at maturity, might go 550#, with good genetics, and you are sniping it from a stand; I think, with a FMJ bullet, a .22 Hornet would do the job!
    All kidding aside, and the above wasn't kidding, but all fact, I would think a .45-70, or a .375 Winchester lever gun, to be about optimal for the job; either round has enough steam to discourage, or dump, a black bear, in full PO'd mode, if the first shot ain't right.
    My 1895 Marlins, Shiloh's, and a .40 C.Sharps Arms Saddle rifle, have always been "enough gun", in most of the western states.
  4. I would say a nice 12 ga. slug or if you really want to use a rifle any decent caliber with a nice soft point
  5. skb 150,

    Here are the two options I would go with.

    #1 Using your 30-06, load up some rounds with decent weight bullets that will not mushroom too quickly and will retain weight as they penetrate deep into or through a bear. Maybe a qood quality Speer brand bullet. Do you know anyone who can help you out with a handload??


    #2 Break out that wallet of yours and get a 325 WSM. They are supposedly pretty awesome and are in the same category as the 338 Win Mag. They should certainly do the deed on any black bear and will suffice when you head west for moose, elk, or caribou. You need to get some of your $$$ back into the American economy anyway!!!!

    Browning makes a beauty!!!!

    Here's something to "tickle your fancy"!

    A nice side piece chambered in... hmmmm.... maybe 454 would be quite appropriate!!!!
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2006
  6. skb150

    skb150 New Member

    Feb 8, 2006
    The 454 was my first choice, but I was told no handguns can be brought into Canada. Any information on that. I would have no problem using my redhawk on a black bear. If I miss I just have to run faster than the guide.
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