View Full Version : 30-30 elk

Mark Kaiser
04-23-2005, 10:28 PM
My friends and I are planning on goin elk hunting this year and I was wondering if a 30-30 would have a enough puch to take one down.

04-23-2005, 11:16 PM
Of course it will, but not as far out as other more modern cartridges. A 30-30 should be good out to 200 yards less or more. After that it starts to drop a bit. But, you will hear both sides of the elk cartridge argument. Some say you dont need much to kill an elk while others say the bigger the better. What ever works for you and puts meat in the freezer.

Just because I personally prefer a bigger cartridge than say a 243, 25-06 or other such "light" catridges doesnt mean that they havent killed elk. But at shorter ranges yes a 30-30 will work great. I have ever only bow hunted for elk but if I were to hunt elk during modern firearm season I would use either my 7mm mag or 30-06. A lot of people prefer a 300 or a 338 mag and others also like any of the 35 caliber cartridges as well as the 8mm mag, but I would say the 300 and 338 mags are two of the more popular, but I dont believe that elk are as hard to kill as a lot of people think.

04-24-2005, 12:55 AM
A 30-30 will kill an elk and has killed lots of them in the past. I would limit my shots to 100 yards or less but that just means that you have to work a little harder and get a little closer. A max load with a 170gr bullet through the ribs will do the trick.

12 gauge
04-24-2005, 05:24 AM
My friends and I are planning on goin elk hunting this year and I was wondering if a 30-30 would have a enough puch to take one down.
I surely know it will!!

That's how i killed my elk, all it took was 2 shots (well the first shot would have been fatal, but i didn't take any chances of the elk running away or suffering) but yeah a 30-30 will surely take down an elk! if you are wanting to shoot a little farther i would suggest a 30-06 or something bigger.

Good luck and update us on your success! :cool:

04-24-2005, 07:31 AM

The 30-30 has and will kill many Elk, It is by far the optimal cartridge to use.
If you place your shot properly a .22 rimfire will do the job. Just as the .22 has its limitations so does the 30-30. If your going to spend hard earned dollars on an Elk hunt, buy or borrow a stronger weapon. The 30-30 will do the job as long as you do yours and wait for a decent shot at a close distance. If your only shot is an Elk quartering to you or quartering away at a sharp angle, the 30-30 wont give you the penetration you need, these animals are tough. I love the 30-30, I have two, but they are best suited for deer and black bear. Do yourself a favor use a 30-06 as a a minimum to give yourself a little more "placement forgiveness" in case your shot is off a bit. Dont lose your chance to bring home an Elk due to the distance or angle of your shot.

Best of luck to you.

Sniper 1

Mark Kaiser
04-24-2005, 09:04 PM
Well we would probably have 5 of us. Some would push bush so I was thinking I would only shoot the elk that would run out because the other four will have higher powered rifles and I wouldnt take the chance of one gettin away and sufferin so I would leave the farther shots for them, thanks for all of your advice!

goood huntin,

05-02-2005, 01:04 PM
Personally I use a 30-06 or my bow for elk but thats what its all about preference. If you prefer to shoot the 30-30 then shoot the 30-30 just be careful with shot placement and such as always while hunting.

05-02-2005, 02:22 PM
The 30-30 has killed many elk over the years. While I personally wouldn't recommend one, if that's all you have to take , then my advice is as Hunterbug said and limit your shots to less than 100 yards. As long as you know your and the 30-30's limitations, you should be fine.

147 Grain
05-03-2005, 12:12 PM
If a 30-30 is all you've got, it will do the job with proper shot selection and placement.

You can also improve your odds with a premium bullet, like the 170-gr. Nosler Partition which Federal still loads.

06-10-2005, 07:51 AM
My grandpa used to hunt elk in Rifle Colorado. His first year he went out there the guide dropped everyone off and when they came to pick up my grandpa he was skinning his bull elk that he shot with his 30/30. The guide couldnít believe it and said that ďitís always some shmuck from out east with a little rifle that gets the bull elk. After that hunt he came home and bought a 300 win mag. He went out there for the next seven years and never had another shot. This story has given me a lot of reverence for the 30/30. Anybody will tell you that the 30/30 has probably killed more of any game animal in America that any other round. At that time it was the best round out there. At this time there are other rounds out there to choose from. Iím planning on going for elk someday but Iíll be taking my 300 RUM. Itís not much different than a 300 Win Mag. I think your 30/30 would work just fine, but are you going to regret it for the rest of your life if you see an elk just outside the range of your 30/30 and never see another one? Thatís where the debate for the bigger rounds gets interesting.

06-10-2005, 10:32 AM
The 30-30 has and will kill elk but this can be asking for a wounded and or lost animal if you are not careful. Keep your shots at closer range (I would not shoot over 100 yards at an elk with that round) I would also use the 170 grain rounds vs the 150 grain. And above all like already stated watch your shot placement!

If you have access to a 270 or 06 I would take one of those affield before taking a 30-30 but if its what you have just be careful when you squeeze the trigger. Elk are big strong animals and sometimes can take in alot of lead (even with well placed shots).

Good luck and happy hunting!


06-11-2005, 01:13 AM
I just finished reading a book about an Alaskan resident who successfully shot and killed over 200 brown bears in his lifetime and killed most of them with military firearms. His first weapon that he used was an old 1905 autoloader in 35 Remington which isnt much different than a 30-30 and he killed 1000-1500 pound animals with it. Then he later upgraded to a Garand in 30-06 which is still very small for Coastal Brownies, but yet he still killed over 200 animals. Just an example of what ifs and could be's, and is not ment to show the norm or average in which most people would hunt big game with but it is an example which shows that it is very doable.

You have to look at it in ratios. Bullet to animal ratios that is. If brown bear can be taken with a 35 Remington out to 200 yards than an elk half the size could be very easily taken with a 30-30. Ifs that is all you have to hunt elk with then I say go do it and let us know how it works out. Trying it out for yourself is the only sure way to know.

06-16-2005, 07:59 PM
Wow....so your intention is to stand in the "escape route" and pick off any elk who are moved in your direction?

Many (most) consider this position to be the most favorable place. You would essentially be your hunting party's "shooter". Whereas a 30-30 works fine at close range.....on a running elk with the possibility of all kinds of weird angles to get to the vitals....I would suggest that either trade spots (or trade rifles) so that the shooter has a real elk rifle to take down the animal.