I no longer venture into Africa to hunt. Africa is just simply too degenerate and unsafe for someone who has been a very brittle insulin dependent diabetic for 52 years. I am however preparing for an Alaskan Brown Bear hunt.
In Alaska, I can go in with helicopter so that I can lift out should that old cantankerous diabetes — and all its’ associated ailments — force me to quickly retreat. I am incredibly thankful I can do this. As one can imagine this is not an inexpensive undertaking and we will burn more cash than a middle income family will earn in one year. I suppose I could divert off this post and relate how “evil” this must be, a la, the anti-capitalist liber style, but I will not.
After 52 years of diabetes I have some difficulties sighting before taking a shot at my prey. It sounds silly, but my peepers just don’t allow me to focus in a scope with ease. In the case of bear hunting, the critter can be on me while I’m battling with the damn sight trying to take a shot. There is another solution.
Let me spit out the full name of the sight I use: Fraser-Volpe MARS Multi-Purpose Aiming Reflex Sight. Wow. It is basically a high quality reflex sight that includes a 650 nm (red) laser. Law enforcement and military get the addition of an IR laser, but een if I had one it would be of no use to me. (And the IRs are night-time devices anyway.)
Obviously I am NOT a 300 to 450 yard hunter of brown bear. The other guys along can hunt at those extremes (and a 450 yard shot at brown bear is truly silly anyway) but for me the big boy is going to have to be much closer.
Of the several rifles I purchased specifically for this sort of hunting I’m going to carry two Remington 375 RUM rifles, model 700 XCR II. Haven’t tried the 375 RUM on bear. My experience is that a .375″ bullet is a little shy for brown bear. (Ok, argue away.) My preference is for 458 Lott and one will be along.
Having said that, I can certainly understand why there have been accidents, i.e. injuries when hunting the African Big 5 with the 458 Winchester. Don’t get me wrong, the 458 Win is an excellent cartridge, but normal factory loadings can often be minimal when a Rhino is chasing your tail. Carry DoubleTap Ammo’s 500gr. Woodleigh Weldcore and you’ll see 5,133 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle. (The 458 Lott adds another 1,000 ft/lbs for a total of 6,133 ft/lbs.) The energy for the 375 RUM sits comfortably between these two using DoubleTap ammo.
A family member who is going along on the tri wants to use one of my Weatherby bolt actions in 300 Weatherby Magnum. Nada. Damn good round mind you, but were bears prone to run when shot rather than attempt to stop for lunch break, I’d be confident. Sometimes we must aid family in education. This is that attempt. I have thus far warned said family member not to shot the bear in the head.
Don’t misunderstand me that I’m concerned with damaging the bears looks should the family member with to taxidermy the bears kind face, rather head shots rarely stop bears. Lol. Should the brownie burst through your cabin door and get his head caught in the wooden door on the way in, then perhaps a quick shot to the ear is all one needs. Are you going to ask the bear to hold very still while you place the gun there? Has happened. No likely however to save you from the lunch menu.
Were America truly as free as we’d like to believe — and once lived — I’d purchase explosive rounds for the S&W 500 as backup. 🙂