Yes, I know, a .308 is insufficient. However, what about a semiauto, like the French MAS? If the first shot didn't drop him, you could give him a few more till he does drop. What are people's thoughts on this?
When I lived in Alaska, many folks I knew who wandered the bush selected a full-size or Tanker Garand in .30-06, filled with surplus AP ammo. I don't believe they were legal for hunting, but either one had great penetration for defensive shots on large carnivores. The .308 would do just as well, probably, IF a person could handle it quickly and skillfully in a VERY stressful situation.
As usual, the person is potentially the weakest point in the loop.
Originally posted by sharpshooter .308 NATO means FMJ, and that's not really desireable compared to all the great hunting bullets out there. A heavy expanding bullet will do th ejob just fine if you do your job decently.
Don't count on having the time or chance for a second shot -- make the first one COUNT. Bear encounters are often sudden and very unexpected; both you and the bear are startled as you pop around a turn in the trail, etc. A griz (as I have been told MANY times) can out-sprint a racehorse; if he's close, one shot may well be all you get.
Most guys who got chewed-up by bears in Alaska when I was there each shared a similar problem; no matter what gun they were carrying, they had it slung over their back or pack (instead of in their hands, ready-to-use). Some of them were even carrying chamber-empty! How fast and sure can you work your bolt-gun when old fish-breath is "bear"ing down on you?
Many of the hunting guides use a sabot-loaded slug shotgun (pump, for reliability) with extended mag; very fast and controllable, and most bird hunters can use it almost instinctively (point and shoot). Others use a .338 WM, .375 H&H, .416 Rem, or other BIG rifles; very hard to shoot these well, and ammo is VERY expensive.
Practice with whatever you choose is probably more important then WHAT you choose.
.308 would be fine, 30.06, or .270 would be as well in a hunting situation. shot placement is obviously critical. in a self-defense situation, there is very little you can do with a long gun. imo, the best thing you can do is carry a .44mag or bigger with really hot loads.
or you could be an idiot like me...i am going to use my Hoyt Fast Flight bow w/125gr broad heads from the ground.
Thanks for your reply Dadburn. I thought that was probably it but just didn't know. That is the American .308 Winchester round then. commonly (or not so common)known for it's military use in the M14. Which I hear a lot of the Navy boys want to phase out. They are (I believe) the only branch of service still using them.