New IN Reg Proposal, New Hunting Options, New .257 Bee???


Sep 21, 2012
HA........just when you thought you got RID of me, I'm BACK. :wink:

Not real common knowledge and nope, not yet carved in stone is the "proposed" regulation change in Indiana to allow for:

"•Allows additional rifles to be used by reducing the bullet size required to .243 and eliminating the maximum rifle cartridge case length. This will allow high-powered rifles such as the .30-30 and .45-70 during the deer firearms seasons. Full metal jacketed bullets would be unlawful because since they do not expand when fired, and therefore, do not kill as humanely. "

(Oh man, do you think I cracked up much reading this? 30-30? 45-70? Right. Nothing "wrong" with such but I, personally, am willing to bet those two will be NOT near the top of the list of rounds Mr. Average Hoosier Deerhunter reaches for.)

The proposal has several hurdles to jump but cleared the first one and there has been but ONE time such a proposal did NOT pass and was sent back to the drawing board so , while not yet "law" for 2015......odds are favorable it will fly. It DOES have some major foes that "allegedly" are screaming that the sky is falling and "the deer herd will be wiped out!" "I wont have any chance to shoot a "book" buck. They will all be dead!!" etc, etc. Much of what I see comes from the same hunters that have wanted to move firearm season out of the rut all together. Bowhunters only. Yep. You guess it. THAT was part of the one and only proposal that bit the dirt. (That I can find record of.) IMHO about every anti-regulation poster gives a reason involved "ME ME ME......what about what I want???" To say that Indiana's seasons and limits are liberal, is an understatement. I've hunted all the deer seasons and love them all too.

Anyway, should it pass, this will put an end to the current ".357 minimum bore, maximum 1.8" case" regulation for rifle rounds allowed that are responsible for the development of rounds like my 350JR. Yes. There are some wildcat chambering gunsmiths and shops in IN that INITIALLY might panic but, if passed, sure would open the door for more rifle sales. Not a lot of people wanted to spend the money to go the Hoosier legal wildcat round.

So, while ahead of the game, this has me looking at how such would change HOW I hunted whichever given area I can do so. Honestly, I don't think that a LOT of hunters will do that initially (and boy do I know a lot of deer hunters here) and they will pick up their choice in round and rifle.......and sit where they always sat. Still great areas? You bet! Set up for over 100 yard shots? Not very often. Pick any hunting area here locally and swing by during firearm season and 99.99 percent of the hunter orange you can see (and all you cannot see) are IN the woods.

I did shoot a couple does with my 350JR from inside the woods, but THEY were NOT in the woods and the single buck, also the first deer I shot with my wildcat was shot from a ditchbank a full 225 yards out and I'd have not even SEEN this buck (or the second buck or the 11 does I saw the first 2 hours of season) had I sat in the "same ol, same ol" spots Ive hunted for some 4 decades now.

Old habits die hard but if the regs allowing for standard HPR rounds passes, IN TIME many will see the light and move to where such truly allows for use of their extended ranges.

I do have a few misgivings on this simply because the "average" Hoosier hunter has VERY little experience with ANY kind of centerfire rifle use. Decades back when groundhogs were plentiful almost all of us owned and used a varmint rifle. Today, such is not the case. I hope and pray Joe Hunter doesn't think they have a magic wand buying a centerfire and "anyone kin shoot a deer with one as fer as you kin see em!!" . Don't laugh. That's a direct quote I recently heard at a local shop.

Even after several thousand varmint rounds being fired in my past at ranges up to 500 yards, I know I still would have my work cut out for me familiarizing myself with gun and round of choice and working loads and while I'm not going to jump the gun and run out and buy anything NOW, I will be closely watching what passes in the spring. Should this pass, the summer is going to be a busy one loading and shooting after the initial chin scratching decisions are made on gun, round and glass (more on THAT later, lol)

The wildcat bug has bit me pretty hard and while I DO have a smaller bore (than the 358) in the thinking and drawing phase, it is more based around a super light, short action, "walking rifle" for this old fart and is not, in any way, being considered as a "long range" cartridge even though it would suffice. What long range IS to each of us is relative but , for ME, a short action, 22 inch barreled 6.5 lb rifle is not the platform I'd pick for.....MY version of "long range".

Besides........any excuse to build or buy TWO rifles is a good one. Right? :grin:

I've two areas in the areas I hunt that I've watched for several years. One I have even went and sat where I would "if I could use a rifle" in the area, more often than not, watching a few to several deer including a couple HOSS bucks, feeding, chasing or just passing through in these fields a FULL 300 yards plus out from ANY kind of cover....or more. A lot miss them out there. With a few "gullies" in this field and the back side of it being over the crest of what constitutes a "hill" in Indiana (we be pretty FLAT here, lol) all of this goes on OUT of view from any of the nearby roads. This is, IMO, an example of what I call a "sleeper" spot. No one DREAMS of hunting out there and don't give it the first look, let alone the second. The distances are long and most don't even know that the back side of this HUGE field (a triangle 2400ftx2600ftx 3200ft (creek)) even drops down out of view. I thought about it and using the 350Jr but stretching such attempting to MAKE it work on long range was just not within my parameters. It's either RIGHT for the job.......or it's WRONG.

Sitting in this field below the crest of the "hill" on the back side, distances of possible shots run from 250 straight to the creek to over 600 (stretching to max visibility) to the far corner. ALL shots would be angled downward towards the creek and there isn't a house or other building for a mile in that direction anyway. What hunters are in the area are friends and I know where they are, which is not even close to any shot path but for one area that I simply would need wait and see if any spotted deer in that one area move my way.....or his.

I should add that on the OTHER side of this creek is roughly 40 acres of unfarmable, low, often wet, JUNK that whitetails so love to ram around in or just stay in out of harms way. Water and food is but yards away from the edges.

Many standard, well proven rounds would "work" better than probably my abilities are to use such so choices in round and rifle are , as they should be, personal. I've always stood behind each hunter's choice in firearm of any kind. We like what we like or maybe it's just something one has never had and wants to give one a "shot". It matters NOT if I LIKE IT or not but should help using it be something asked for, I've tried my best.

The combination of my aging body not motorvating as well as it once did. Climbing up tree stands are now out of the question as is even a half mile hike to my stand. Combine these factors with the ever annoying number of hunters IN the woods' in the area and all have me looking at the "wide open spaces" just a little bit closer than I had. This could work......just DANDY, if I play my cards right.

BECAUSE I've always read about, wondered about, often admired Roy Weatherby's work in his "different than everyone else's" rounds I've been giving them a look. Nope, never had one either. Never have had the chance to SHOOT one even. It's all rather exasperating to a cartridgle lover like me. Till now, other than out of state hunts which I always did bowhunting as a younger version of what I am now, such was just not feasible. If this passes as expected such would still not be "needed" (geez I hate that word when used for firearms or rounds) one would CERTAINLY be "usable". :grin:

The 257 Bee kind of leaps out at you if one looks. A. Several other companies chamber rifles for this round OTHER than Weatherby. hmmmmm Not a lover of intense RECOIL, the 257 Bee also gets the nod. I will grudgingly admit that to a resident of a state that has used slug guns for the bulk of it's deer hunting history and the recent ".357 minimum" legislation........I do view the .257 bore as "dinky" :oops: even though I KNOW IT WORKS. It's just SO much smaller in both weight and diameter than "the norm" in my life for deer. It's "alien" lol I had a 2506......for groundhogs. :grin:

So here I am with a question or two, if you kind and ever helpful people will oblige.

Yes. The 257 Bee with appropriate medium game bullet will stand a deer on it's nose.....pretty far out. MY question is this. WHAT IF the deer appears 80 yards away "out of nowhere"? I've worries about the super high speeds of this round turning a few to several pounds of "moose-mush" and I am, first and foremost, a "meat hunter". I like big ol bucks and would whack one with glee, but such is not my reason TO hunt, like so many. Color me with any tar brush you wish. Such is still the case after all these decades. Daddy took me hunting.......for meat for supper. I stand on that family tradition with pride.

The SECOND, it seems like such heresy to do so, never owning a Mark V but I'm considering the purchase of one and looking at ALL the rifles chambered for such OR one of the old time Remington actions Ive loved for decades rebarreled and rechamberd for such. Is there ISSUES there I need to be aware of??

As always, God Bless each and every one, safe hunting and a heart felt THANK YOU for your input should you so offer such.