New Elk Rifle


I just got a new elk rifle for my 12 yr old son. It is a Weatherby Vanguard youth in 7mm-08. I topped it with a Nikon

Coyote Special 4.5-14X40mm scope that I won in an online contest from a hunting club I belong to. I haven't had a

chance to take it to the range yet, but I hope to do that next weekend. We have cow elk tags for the first week of

November here in Colorado. I think he will enjoy carrying the rifle and I hope it will serve him well for years to come.

Semper Fi



Sounds like a good set up. Good luck with the hunt.


God Bless Our Troops!!!
7mm-08 is an awesome round

Good flat shooter with manageable recoil...Great choice and good luck!!!


New member
I have a Wby Vanguard carbine in 7mm-08 that I used last deer season. Worked well enough=several one shot kills. I'm using 140 grain Nosler BT's and Hornady 139 BTSP at slightly below max. The short barrel is loud but that's to be expected. Accuracy is not the best I've had but I didn't put a lot of effort into developing the loads, either. Go with one of the tougher premium bullets in a lighter wieght for less recoil if that's a factor. My suggestion is to stay close to your son while hunting both to help keep him calm and to make an insurance shot if needed. I've seen several examples of youngsters having bad experiences simply because their mentor left them to hunt alone before they had enough skill or confidence.
I understand it is a free rifle. However, I would use at least a .308 on an Elk. I understand your son is only 12, and recoil is a consideration. I am also thinking of the Elk. IMO, suggest your son try for neck shots. I know that elk have been taken with .243, .223, and even a 22 LR. Just one hunters opinion.
I found these postings on other sites. Just Google 7mm-08 Elk for results.
You and your son have a great adventure.

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Montana Elk Hunting: .308, 7mm-08, .243

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New member
At 100-150 yards, I would have no problem expecting the 7mm-08 to provide adequate penetration and expansion to kill elk with any hit through the lungs. At this range, the 7mm-08 has about the same energy level as the 7mm Rem mag at 300+ yards and it is universally accepted for this application. Cow elk have much less bulk in the front shoulders and neck and overall lighter weight. A Nosler 140-150 Partition will do the job and get it done quickly. The 7mm-08 has lower perceived recoil thatn the 308 in my experience. I have light carbines in both calibers and have shot and hunted with both. The 308 seems to have a more harsh recoil with the same energy level loading and similar SD bullets.


I am not the least bit worried about the 7mm-08 on elk. My older son has killed elk the last three years with my brothers TC encore 7mm-08. All three were one shot quick and humane kills. I know some will say it is not enough gun, but his first cow was at 280 yards broadside and he hit both lungs, she went about 20 yards before she died. If you have ever hunted elk you know that 20yards is more or less and instant kill. I have shot them at under 200 yards with a 30-06 and had them run 100 yards. They were dead and didin't know it yet.

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