10mm bear ammo question

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... idea of carry defense is a short .338 Win mag with irons. He has a longer barreled and scoped .338 to hunt them with. FWIW, he and his buddies are not fans of lever guns as a last line of defense against browns ...
So, bolt gun, break open, or auto-loader?
 
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sschevy

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I’m going to start off by saying I’m a huge fan of 10mm , I’m also very familiar with big brown bears considering I’ve lived in may parts of the country where they hang out, I personally would not rely on a autoloadimg 10mm pistol

Grizzly bears can’t be clumped into one category, especially in Alaska , inland brown bears are not the same as costal bears, costal brown bears are MUCH bigger than inland grizzly bears even though they are the same species

In Any pistol caliber hard cast is the way to go, that being said any caliber under 44 mag is a game of luck against a Alaskan bear, having personally encountered a few BIG bears I wouldn’t chance luck especially in costal regions

10mm doesn’t deliver the energy needed to reliably stop a grizzly, and that’s all that is going to do the job , energy

Putting multiple inferior rounds on target isn’t always a option as in the case of the guy with the 9mm

I have several friends that are guides in Alaska and a couple that work for Glacier NP in Montana , they have all recently switched from magnum handguns and rifle cartridges to shotguns with slugs

Keep in mind a big angry bear will still be able to easily kill you even if it dies right by your side 3 seconds later
 

Mountain

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I’m going to start off by saying I’m a huge fan of 10mm , I’m also very familiar with big brown bears considering I’ve lived in may parts of the country where they hang out, I personally would not rely on a autoloadimg 10mm pistol

Grizzly bears can’t be clumped into one category, especially in Alaska , inland brown bears are not the same as costal bears, costal brown bears are MUCH bigger than inland grizzly bears even though they are the same species

In Any pistol caliber hard cast is the way to go, that being said any caliber under 44 mag is a game of luck against a Alaskan bear, having personally encountered a few BIG bears I wouldn’t chance luck especially in costal regions

10mm doesn’t deliver the energy needed to reliably stop a grizzly, and that’s all that is going to do the job , energy

Putting multiple inferior rounds on target isn’t always a option as in the case of the guy with the 9mm

I have several friends that are guides in Alaska and a couple that work for Glacier NP in Montana , they have all recently switched from magnum handguns and rifle cartridges to shotguns with slugs

Keep in mind a big angry bear will still be able to easily kill you even if it dies right by your side 3 seconds later
Pump action shotguns? Any particular models?
 

greencobra

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This guy has several hair raising grizzly bear encounter stories on his channel.
this guy broke the golden rule of reloaders the old timers use to bandy about....never, ever use someone elses reloads, doesn't matter how good you know the person or how much you trust them. in this situation on the video...well, one lucky guy, and he knows it.
 
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Pump action shotguns? Any particular models?
Grab an H&R Pardner Protector - it's an optics-ready 870 clone from China for roughly $200 which has more metal parts and better finish than an Express, which is weird because it's actually a subsidiary of Remington now. All your standard 870 parts pop right on there and the browning-esque receiver hump is comfy. Good 3" slugs will make a bear go bye bye. If it gets beat up buy another... screw it. I've beat the piss out of several with ZERO issues; high brass, low brass, cheap ammo, good ammo, reloads, left outside camp all night, dropped out of a tree stand, I love'em.
 
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I am aware of one well known recent case in which a brown bear was killed with a 9mm handgun. The incident has been described in many articles, including this one by the man who did it.

Alaska Outfitter Defends Fishermen from Raging Grizzly with 9mm Pistol

According to the article, the ammo used was Buffalo Bore 9mm +P Outdoorsman 147-grain FN hard-cast. I am no expert on bears, but the man who wrote the article actually is. I would take his choice of ammo as a hint.
I think he used that (according to the article) since he was fishing, and it was all that he had. Not really by choice...
 

greencobra

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any 10mm ammo i'd trust my life on in grizzly country most certainly will not work in a semi-auto handgun such as a glock. you need a giant, bone crushing, hard cast bullet moving out at maximum velocities. any random story you read of some guy taking out a bear with lesser calibers, and I've seen stories using .22 on up, played the game and won. and a lot of the popular brands of 10mm ammo is anemic now days compared to the 10mm your grandad knew when the caliber was introduced.

anyone, doesn't buffalo bore have a hot line to help match loads to the application, like in this case a load for bear country protection.
 

gerrycaruso

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If I was forced to defend myself against something that large and pissed off, I'd go with the 220 hard cast, though I agree with Jack. How bout this? Go with someone who runs slower than you.
 
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I just got back from a month packing moose in interior Alaska. I only saw black bear although there was grizzly sign everywhere.

I carried a Sig P220 10MM with Underwood 220 grain Hardcast. I tested the roundfor fun on a 14" live birch tree. The bullet sailed through and penetrated another 4" birch behind it. I didn't recover it.

Bring what you shoot well. I've spoken with dozens of guides. Opinions are like....you know, everyone has them.
 

Eli

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Yeah a well placed 10mm 220 hr hard cast or 44 mag is a fine choice. Of course I’d rather not be out there without a 338 win mag or my old 338 rum but if it’s all you got it can have a pistol should be fine
 

Mountain

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10mm Underwood hard cast 693 ft lbs energy at the muzzle.
44 mag. “. “. 1533 ft lbs
12 ga slugs - most range ~2300 to ~2800 ft lbs.

It’s one thing to make a personal decision that 10mm is good enough for your own defense needs vs Alaskan brown bears. I don’t think anyone reading this thread should get the idea that 10mm is anywhere close to an optimal choice for defense against a 1000 lb carnivorous beast.
 

DrBurnsides

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Does a 12 ga slug penetrate deep enough? The power plant on a bear is buried under some thick skin/fur/muscle. God forbid it’s wet with 1/2” of water in the fur. I’ve seen one bear. A smaller black one. Browns and grizzlies, yeah no. I’m not sure overkill would exist for me.
 

Mountain

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Does a 12 ga slug penetrate deep enough? The power plant on a bear is buried under some thick skin/fur/muscle. God forbid it’s wet with 1/2” of water in the fur. I’ve seen one bear. A smaller black one. Browns and grizzlies, yeah no. I’m not sure overkill would exist for me.
No idea, really. It comes with a LOT of energy, maybe it will?


A couple years ago we had a massive ~450 lb black bear checking out what's for dinner at our sliding screen door between our kitchen table and deck. He reluctantly left with some firm 'shoo-ing', but I had my P220 (45acp) in case he tangled with us or the dogs. This one was pretty calm and seemed to know the drill when around people. He could have walked right through the screen but didn't and just stopped to sniff. There's a medium size bear in the neighborhood that got very aggressive and made a short charge at my next door neighbor when he was filming it with a phone. I think most any caliber that would take care of a large person would take care of black bears this size, but watching how quickly the medium size one moved makes me want to have something that hits pretty hard. A 12 ga slug would be great for black bear, but lugging a shotgun around the house isn't as realistic as carrying a pistol.

I only know one guy that hunts and/or guides for brown bear, and he swears by .338 Win mag rifles for hunting and .44 mag or bigger for a back-up pistol. I don't recall him ever saying he used a pistol- he was always ready with a rifle in case a client needed back up. If you are carrying a rifle, also carrying a shotgun isn't realistic. My Dad hunted caribou and fished regularly for salmon in Alaska, and the bush pilot service he used mandated .44 mag or bigger for back-up.
 

DrBurnsides

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Thank you. Keep in mind. They run down deer at short surprise distances. Teuller drill 1/3rd for those guys. They make tight ends on fb teams looks positively sluggish.
 
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Grab an H&R Pardner Protector - it's an optics-ready 870 clone from China for roughly $200 which has more metal parts and better finish than an Express, which is weird because it's actually a subsidiary of Remington now. All your standard 870 parts pop right on there and the browning-esque receiver hump is comfy. Good 3" slugs will make a bear go bye bye. If it gets beat up buy another... screw it. I've beat the piss out of several with ZERO issues; high brass, low brass, cheap ammo, good ammo, reloads, left outside camp all night, dropped out of a tree stand, I love'em.
$176 at Bud's.


... I only know one guy that hunts and/or guides for brown bear, and he swears by .338 Win mag rifles for hunting and .44 mag or bigger for a back-up pistol. I don't recall him ever saying he used a pistol- he was always ready with a rifle in case a client needed back up. If you are carrying a rifle, also carrying a shotgun isn't realistic. My Dad hunted caribou and fished regularly for salmon in Alaska, and the bush pilot service he used mandated .44 mag or bigger for back-up.
My nephew was a ranger in Denali for a summer, and carried ... a knife? He didn't mention too much about bears over Christmas.
 

stinx

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I cary 220 underwood in my 10mm, but I'm only concerned with the bears in Northern New England. If I was in Alaska I would want my 10mm and a 12 gauge loaded with slug. YMMV
 
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Hi, I’ve lived in Alaska my whole life. A short answer to your question is you want the heaviest/ fastest ammo you can get your hands on aka buffalo bore 230 hard cast or something along those lines. But swap barrels for like a Kkm or something else that will shoot unjacketed rounds if you are running a Glock. If/ when you get here your best bet is going to be at alaska ammo over by Merrill field. I think it’s on commercial drive. Anyway the long answer is think about where you’re going, what time of year it is, and how many people are going to be around. For example if you are going to be in kodiak by yourself in between salmon runs yeah you probably want to carry a rifle. But if you are climbing flattop in July you probably don’t need to have more than a pocket knife. Basically don’t let every yahoo who has a guide buddy or thinks they are an expert because they recently watched a nat geo special tell you what to carry. I carry a g29 more than anything else specifically for bears because most of the time all you are ever going to see are small black bears. There’s like 3 times as many black bears as there are brown bears up here and even more likely a moose. Really a pissed off moose in the middle of a trail is statistically more likely to kick your ass than any bear. And on the rare occasion that you ever encounter a brown bear it isn’t like all of them are the biggest record setting bear ever recorded. That’s the main thing people forget is not all of them are insanely huge. One thing is true though, they are FAST! So the faster you can have a firearm at the ready the better. Also when people come up here to go fishing or hunting they end up at places like the Russian river or on the Kenai where there are like a thousand other people around every one of them packin’. Fun fact: bears don’t f&$k with large groups of people. Also bears generally don’t attack people unless they think they are a threat or if the bear is hungry so right when it wakes up in the spring or between salmon runs or whatever they like to munch on isn’t around right then. This is just my two cents, sorry I digress so hard from the actual question but really it was just in response to literally every message board ever has a million people telling 10mm packers that it ain’t enough gun. I know even people from up here are going to think to themselves “ oh that guy is retarded, there isn’t enough penetration behind a 10mm.”
To people like that I tell em to google Charlie vandergaw. I spend most of my free time 1 mile from that guys house. To be fair though when I’m out there I carry my Ruger Toklat or my marlin. Sorry for the longest post ever but anyway when you get up here welcome and have fun.
 

Blackmore

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Save the last round for yourself.
Immediately thought of this:

When you're wounded and left on Afghanistan's plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An' go to your Gawd like a soldier.


As for bears, if you want to go all in, Serbu Super Shorty 12 gauge. AOW ($5 tax stamp).

 

M1911

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You can’t hit crap with that kind of shotgun. You can’t easily use it one handed. You can’t easily use it if the bear is right on top of you.

Not what I would use at all. In an ideal world, carry a full stock shotgun on a sling and a holster big bore handgun in a caliber you can shoot reasonably well.
 
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