Hornady 338RCM - 225grn SST - opinions???

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Feb 12, 2009
Wondering what everyone thinks of the round and what your experiences have been like when hunting with it. I'm not a handloader, and don't have the time to put into that. I'm trying to decide if I should give up on this round until new bullet choices are offered or if what I've experienced were flukes.

I've shot 3 deer with this round and after looking at the films, all hits were solid just behind the shoulder. 1st 2 were bucks at 120-130yds, the 3rd was a doe at 95yds. No blood trail was found for any of the deer. I recovered the doe 30yds away. Both bucks hit the ground, then got up and hobbled out the back edge of the clearings. Gridded and searched the areas where the bucks were shot with multiple people and couldn't retrieve either. I don't have a clue what could have happenned. Any input? At any rate, I'll be ready with follow up shots from now on.


Mar 28, 2004
Either Texas or Idaho
I do not know what factory ammo is available for the round but it was designed, as most 338's are, for critters larger than deer so I suspect factory loads carry fairly stout bullets. While they are stout bullets, I would look for the 185 gr Barnes TSX or the 210 gr Partition if available as I know via experience that they will open up and readily knock over smaller hogs and black bear (let alone elk and the like) quite readily. I would stay away from anything over the 210 gr. Partition. Is a simple cup and core bullet factory loaded?