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Old 10-07-2018, 12:20 AM
17tbs 17tbs is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 520
Default Deer with a .223

Tried it with lots of success with hunts in TX where it is legal to use ANY center-fire to hunt deer with. We use everything from 22 hornet and up, some even use a .144 caliber Walker. When you can place your shot accurately then pretty much everything with enough energy to get to the vitals and leave a good blood trail will work. If you can assure yourself of a really good shot placement then anything "could work", but most of what Wyoming is famous for will prevent you from getting those shots, this includes wind, distance and game that easily spooks leaving a trail of dust in your scope. USE a fast enough cartridge and rifle combination to ensure that you do not make errors in wind and end up wounding game.

That being said, a .223 is really a bare minimum in my opinion for shots up to 200yds. I would never shoot at something that I MIGHT miss by even 2 inches if using a .223 Rem or 5.56. Really there is no margin for error.

I hunt deer using an ambush technique and stalk them on a game trail. If I am not within range to hold dead on and dead steady within an inch, then I do not shoot. This means I stalk to within fifty or fewer yards, frequently as close as ten yards.

Wyoming topography probably will seldom present you with that sort of opportunity. In my opinion you should not be thinking about a good bullet for deer at 300 yards in a 5.56mm or a .223 Remington. Perhaps in a 22-250, but not the .223 Rem. There are just too many things that can go wrong at those ranges using that caliber. Yes you will kill a lot of deer, but you will loose a lot more if you shoot beyond 300 yards.

IF I were shooting at those ranges and had to choose a lead core bullet, I would use the 63gr Sierra Semi Spitzer, or the 65gr Sierra Gameking. I would only shoot from a rest, and only with wind either dead steady and under ten mph, or zero wind.

You should really consult a ballistics chart to let you know what is going to give you the most forgiving trajectory and fastest time of flight coupled with a bullet that you know will expand, but not fail to penetrate.

That leaves with the 65gr Game King, followed with the 63gr Sierra Semi-Spitzer.

Unless your rifle can produce north of 3300fps with these in my opinion 250 is a reasonable outside limit. So, unless you are hand loading then you should rationally keep it inside 150 if we are honest with ourselves.

I use a contender and with the 63 and 65gr I can get about 2680 from my 16.25" barrel. I will not huntwith it at anything over 100yards, not because of accuracy, but because the target MOVES unpredictably.

Last edited by 17tbs; 10-08-2018 at 04:48 AM.
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