Yeti

Good factory loads for elk?

Magnum Sherpa

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Oct 8, 2015
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Missoula, MT
I'm looking for recommendations for a good .270 factory load for elk. I had previously shot either a .30-06 or .300 WSM, but last year I scaled back to a .270 Kimber Mountain Ascent rifle. I love the rifle and it is great to carry, but I wasn't happy with my bullet performance last year. I was shooting 150 gr Winchester Super X Power Point loads, and I shot my bull at 250 yards. I put 2 shots into his chest, but when I walked up on him 15 minutes later he still got up and ran. I finished him off with a shot in the neck as he ran. When field dressing the bull, I noticed that at least one bullet was really fragmented, with poor weight retention. I was thinking about possibly trying Federal Premium loads with a 150 gr Nosler Partition. Does anyone have experience with these, or have another recommendation?
 

HighDesertSage

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150 Nosler Partition is an excellent choice. I have personally killed elk with the 130 Barnes TTSX. They performed excellent at 380 yrds with a 1 shot kill. I wouldn't hesitate to use Nolser's factory Accubond loads either.
 

claybreaker

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Aug 13, 2015
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E. TN
It doesn't sound like you are a reloader. I would buy 3 or 4 boxes of different premium factory ammo with good hunting bullets like those mentioned (partition, accubond, TSX, interbond,...). Then shoot groups with each and let your rifle tell you which "good factory load" to use.

Go shoot elk, eat well,
 

elkduds

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CO Springs.
I suspect any 130 gr or heavier bonded or partition bullet through both lungs would work. I know for sure that the 160 gr Nosler partition loads in Double Tap factory ammo git 'er done.
 

Gr8bawana

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This past season my son used my wife's .270 using the Federal Premium ammo you mentioned, 150 grain Nosler Partition. It shoots very accurately out of this rifle. The bull was shot at a range of 408 yards. It was a high lung shot and penetrated completely to the off-side.
 

ScottP

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We've had great luck with the TSX, TTSX, and Hornady's GMX. I'll never go back to lead bullets. These shoot great, perform excellent on elk (all have basically gone less than 50yds), and don't kill all the hawks and eagles that eat your gut piles left in the woods.
 

Speeddmn

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Helena, MT/ Opheim, MT
As mentioned, if you step up to premium factory loads they will perform better. Anything from Barnes, Nosler, HSM, Hornady (V or A- Max's, shy away from the SST's (they like to explode on bone), or even the Federal Premium stuff) will do a great job. If you don't reload, maybe a friend does and you and him/her could get components and try different loads.
 

shootbrownelk

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We've had great luck with the TSX, TTSX, and Hornady's GMX. I'll never go back to lead bullets. These shoot great, perform excellent on elk (all have basically gone less than 50yds), and don't kill all the hawks and eagles that eat your gut piles left in the woods.

Same here Scott, Great performance on Elk and on a Moose last year. I tried Hornady's GMX and Nosler's E-tip but I still use Barnes TTSX bullets the most. They all perform well and retain 90%+ of their loaded weight, but the Barnes bullets are what my 2 rifles shoot the best. YMMV.
 

Badger_55

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I have been looking at alot of ballistics as well. My rifle really likes the Winchester bst. Since my gun seems to like them i am hesitant changing. Also comparing the Win BSTs to the barnes, noslers, and hsms i dont see much of a difference at all in the factory loads.
If anyone disagrees i am all ears... currently shoot 150gr 300wsm rounds.
 

Gr8bawana

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I have been looking at alot of ballistics as well. My rifle really likes the Winchester bst. Since my gun seems to like them i am hesitant changing. Also comparing the Win BSTs to the barnes, noslers, and hsms i dont see much of a difference at all in the factory loads.
If anyone disagrees i am all ears... currently shoot 150gr 300wsm rounds.

The OP was asking about his .270 and if anyone had any experience with any premium ammo, not ammo for a 300wsm. Please don't hijack the thread.
 

ardrhi

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Feb 14, 2012
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Arimo, Idaho
I used to think any bullet was fine. That the differences were mostly academic and too minimal to make any real difference. I almost always used Winchester Powerpoints, whether in a .270 or .30-06. I almost always had problems with bullet fragments and most animals took second or third shots even when hit well. One buck hit twice in the shoulder had fragments from head to tail. For a while I thought that was just part of the hunt. Then I couldn't find Powerpoints and had to buy some Federal whatevers. For several years, my kills were clean and my blood trailing skills went untested. When the Federal ran out I went back to Powerpoints and my blood trailing skills became critical again. I sold rifles, I switched scopes, thinking they were the problem. Finally, my kids wanted to hunt with the .223 and I couldn't find Powerpoints for it. Half dozen deer with a .223 later with nothing hit and lost, and no fragmentation problems I started to suspect the Powerpoints were bad. I switched and haven't had a problem with anything else. I'm still not sure that most bullets provide anything more than academic differences, but I am confident that you're making the right choice going to anything other than Powerpoints.
 

F250

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I have taken 3 elk, 4 caribou, and lots of whitetails with the .270 150 gr.Federal Premium Nosler Partition. Great bullet. Never let me down.
 

Rocky176

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Feb 26, 2013
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329
I want the heaviest bullet with the accuracy I want from my gun and shooter (me). It's about range time until I get the results I want from a load. I hand load 200 gr Nosler for my 325. The type of bullet and weight is also game specific. Thin skinned animals like a whitetail needs less weight than an elk or moose. Good luck and shoot and shoot often.
 

Gunner46

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Frigid Ohio
I think all to many of us forget that the initial impact weight (IIW)of a bullet is not so important as the end of penetration weight (EPW). It's the EPW that, after all, maintains a bullets penetration depth, not the IIW.

That said, a 100gr mono will end its penetration pretty much still 100gr, or at least close. A 150 gr dual core bullet, that sheds 40% of its weight will weight only 90 grs at the end.

Each will probably penetrate just about the same, under actual field conditions.

My point being, don't set arbitrary constraints on bullet weights. Find what your rifle wants first and start working around that.
 
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