This year I decided to load 95gr. Nosler Ballistic Tips for my Ruger KM77RFP MKII .243 with H-4350. Accuracy was quite good and the average velocity is 3071 FPS.
So far we have shot 3 Whitetails with this Gun-n-Load this year. First up was my oldest Daughter (Christy). Christy got a nice fat little button buck the second Sunday of the season. We were in a ground blind and it was miserable, raining and windy. At about 10 minutes after sunset the button buck materialized in some trees across the meadow from us (222 yards to be exact). When everything was right (deer broadside and Christy with a good rest) the Ruger .243 BOOMED and the Deer made one leap and that was that. The shot was low behind the shoulder, striking a rib on entrance, to tally destroying the heart, striking another rib and exiting leaving a quarter to 50 cent piece size exit hole. Upon the field dressing I found absolutely no evidence of bullet break up, and was quite pleased with the performance.
The next day it rained all day and just before sunset it turned to snow, and after dark into a full fledged blizzard. To make matters worse all the Rain coated all the power lines and we were without electricity for 5 days. This was quite an ordeal, but we made it through even though I did not have an opportunity to hunt all that week. This past week the Son in Law, Wife and I made it out a few times, but luck was not on our side as we were not able to make anything happen. Today the temps soared into the mid 30's, and we had light rain on and off most of the day. The good part of this is it removed the ice from EVERYTHING and softened the snow (well for now anyway). This afternoon the wife and I went out and got into a ground blind. It is a good thing we were in the ground blind because after we had been there about 45 minutes it started raining, yes really raining not just a drizzle.
At about sunset 2 deer appeared down the hill from us and were feeding out of the trees. It was raining so hard at this point visibility was diminishing. From the wife's position she could watch the deer, but I was unable to see them for most of the time. All of a sudden Bonnie whispered "they are feeding into the draw and are going to come up right beside us. We waited and watched and no deer. All of a sudden I looked to our left and there they were. I slowly opened the window on the ground blind, but they spotted the movement right away. I froze but it was too late as they took off. As they got out about 180 yards they stopped and I dropped the big doe with a single shot. The wind drifted my bullet a little more than I had anticipated, and as a result the shot was on the front edge of the front shoulders about 3" below the bottom of the spinal column. Again the 95gr. Nosler Ballistic Tip did exactly what it was supposed to do, clipping the top of the near side shoulder, a rib, destroying the liungs, hitting another rib and finally exiting through the top of the off side shoulder, again leaving about a quater sized exit hole with no evidence of bullet breakup.
As soon as the Doe I shot collapsed and I knew she was down for the count I turned the Ruger over to Bonnie. She lined up the crosshairs on the button buck (which at this point was 200 yards away) and squeezed the 2 pound trigger. At the shot the button buck collapsed on the spot. Bonnie had shot a little high and the bullet took out about a 3" chunk of the bottom of the spinal column, completely penetrating the deer.
Now I am fully aware that taking 3 Deer with a single Rifle / Bullet combination is not a very thorough study on that combos performance. So far I have not seen anything about this bullet I do not like. My Son in Law has an antlerless tag left as do I, so hopefully we will have the opportunity to harvest a couple more Whitetails with this Gun-n-Load combo before the season ends. Tomorrow is the last day until January 1st and then the season reopens for 8 more days.