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The "most likely" .357 magnum cartridge to kill a black bear

This is a discussion on The "most likely" .357 magnum cartridge to kill a black bear within the Hunting forums, part of the Firearm Forum category; Since no one answered your question I'll put my 2c in. Try the swift A Frame out of your 357. I use it in my ...


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Old August 30th, 2015, 07:44 PM   #16
 
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Since no one answered your question I'll put my 2c in. Try the swift A Frame out of your 357. I use it in my 44 up to 300 lb hogs to date and have had complete pass throughs on both deer and hogs. Get some loaded. Test them compared to others in wet phone books and you will understand why I'm recommending them. They aren't cheap, but really get the job done.



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Old August 30th, 2015, 11:12 PM   #17
 
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Again people, we seem to be veering into exactly what I was trying to avoid with this post; on the morality of using a .357 for black bear defense. Yes, a .44 mag or larger is more ideal. Yes, the chances of a black bear actually attacking and resorting to shooting it are incredibly miniscule. Yes, I'm sure bear mace is VERY effective.

These however have nothing to do with the original post.
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Old August 30th, 2015, 11:15 PM   #18
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pulpwood View Post
Since no one answered your question I'll put my 2c in. Try the swift A Frame out of your 357. I use it in my 44 up to 300 lb hogs to date and have had complete pass throughs on both deer and hogs. Get some loaded. Test them compared to others in wet phone books and you will understand why I'm recommending them. They aren't cheap, but really get the job done.
are these expanding or hard cast? just curious not that it would totally matter, if youre getting complete pass through
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Old August 31st, 2015, 04:04 AM   #19
 
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The Swift A Frame are heavy duty expanding hollow points that come in 180 grain for .357.

I would personally opt for a hard cast LFN, such as Buffalo Bore's offering to ensure penetration.

Here's what Chuck Hawks suggests for bear defense and includes his recommendations for .357 ammo.

Handguns for Protection in the Field

My brief discussion about other calibers was to point out that the 357 is not a bad choice for bear defense and in fact may be preferred by many, myself included. Sorry if I seemed to drift from the topic.
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Old August 31st, 2015, 04:09 AM   #20
 
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Old August 31st, 2015, 11:34 AM   #21
 
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Agree with the BB 180,good round. Most times the bear runs off and is never seen. The next most times even a first shot hit to the foot the bear runs off. For the other times use good up to the job ammo.
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Old August 31st, 2015, 12:32 PM   #22
 
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I well remember the time when some of the bear hunters in our hunting club in western NC carried 38 police special pistols as back ups to their Marlin/Winchester 30-30 rifles, 12 ga shotguns, and/or other hunting rifles .... when the 357 came out, it was considered to be the most powerful pistol made and was an overnight sensation .... way back before Buffalo bullets and such ammo existed, I saw the results of a 158 gr Nosler JHP pushed by 14.8 gr W296 on black bear, Russian Boar, deer, and yes, even on two Elk while hunting in Colorado .... for a person who is able to handle it proficiently in a pressure situation, a 357 is an extremely capable round .... it would no longer be my first choice but of caliber but I wouldn't hesitate to carry one as per the opening post
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Old August 31st, 2015, 12:58 PM   #23
 
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It doesn't matter whether it's .357 or .44 because you'll likely get only one or two shots. Black bears move incredibly fast when charging, and a LOT faster than you think they do. I carry a .357 GP-100 often simply because I can shoot it better than my .44 Mags at longer distances, so I'd go with the Buffalo Bore .357 "Heavy" Outdoorsman hard-cast load 19A/20, or Alaska Backpacker .357 Hard Cast loads. You don't want an FMJ round that penetrates through the bear w/o expansion because all the energy that it leaves with is energy that it does NOT transfer to the bear. Hard cast loads hit like a young Mike Tyson.

My $0.02 from living among the black bears of Alaska.
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Old August 31st, 2015, 09:30 PM   #24
 
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Hard cast 158Gr Underwood.
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Old September 1st, 2015, 05:31 AM   #25
 
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Guess you're just going to have to poke one and find out what makes them stop ticking.
Watched a 14 year old girl drop one from roughly 15 feet away with a compound bow in Minnesota.
Thing stood up, she drilled it from a kneeling position in the chest with a Mathews Q2, a 125 grain Rage broadhead, and nerves of steel. Makes a nice letter-outter.
Fell over about 10 feet away.
Scared the bajesus out of me.
Had a Springfield 30-06 with 220 grain Remington KorLokt persuaders as back up, but still a little spooky.
Good times.
Although I pack my .375 Magnum wheel gun with hand loads confidently into the woods for close up work,
I personally believe that when in intended pursuit of North America's most dangerous game, a hand gun caliber should start with a number 4. And end in the word "Casull."
Loud noise. Big hole. One and done.
As you know, this is only an opinion.
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Old September 2nd, 2015, 01:53 AM   #26
 
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This is a link to a forum thread where a gentleman talks about black bear self defense and his experience as a professional hunter. It's really a fascinating thread and quite informative.

While he is talking about his preference for 44 Magnum, I think the information translates into any caliber. His opinion is that a standard 240 grain hollow point is the BEST bear defense load. Read the link for his logic.

Model 29 Mountain - Topic

As I see it, this would be roughly equivalent to a 180 grain hollow point in a 357. Perhaps I need to rethink my opinion on hard cast LFN?


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Old September 2nd, 2015, 02:07 AM   #27
 
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Old September 2nd, 2015, 03:34 AM   #28
 
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The "most likely" .357 magnum cartridge to kill a black bear

For 357 Magnum and woods carry/defense I like Buffalo Bore. Your GP100 and SP101 with Buffalo Bore will be ok.
Not the greatest, but ok enough. After all, it is your backup to your 870 or a rifle. And yes, Bear spray is good.
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Old September 2nd, 2015, 08:02 AM   #29
 
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Thanks guys getting more good stuff. It seems like hard cast would be the way to go, unless have you guys seen these "penetrator" style bullets? Ive seen a couple different brands, and all seem to have the same screwdriver shape, and are designed to penetrate while also leaving somewhat of a permanent wound cavity

https://www.underwoodammo.com/357-ma...me-penetrator/
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Old September 2nd, 2015, 08:15 AM   #30
 
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Just to be clear, is your revolver the only weapon you will have in the field? This is what I understood.

I think in any case any heavy for caliber (180+ grain) bullet should be okay.
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