I was adjusting the scope on a new rifle and had placed
a fired brass on the table at the range to inspect for signs
of pressure, when a young man at the next table asked me
" what you shooting, a 7mag"? Naw! It`s a 264 Mag! He
looked at the fired brass and said" I never heard of it? Is
it a new round? I replied "It`s nearly as old as I am,"guess
my gray hair answered his question!
Remembering back as kid, I was a s crazy about guns as
anyone, and the first time I laid eyes on the then new 264
Win Mag, then called the "Westerner", as well as the 338
called the "Alaskan" I started saving my money! Finally
I thought, a long range deer rifle! I was dreaming of a 257
Weatherby, but the cost made it a dream, but the Mod 70
Winchester that was a possibility! I read every article on
the 264, at first it was the rave, and for some reason a long
barrel was not popular, Winchester offered the 264 in a
22" barrel, which looked like a blow torch when fired! In
reality it took the strength away and added muzzle blast!
All of a sudden its popularity faded, and to put a fork into
it, Remington brought out the 7mm mag! Now all of a sudden
.020 of bullet diameter had elk rolling off mountain tops, no
more comparisons of the 270 were rolling off the presses!
I fell for the hype, and the money saved was plopped down
on the new Remington! It was a few years when a friend
wanted the chevy manifold with 2 four barreled carbs I had
and traded me for a Sako rifle in 264 win mag! I now had the
rifle to compare! I loaded only 100 and 120 grainers, thinking
the 264 was like the 257 Weatherby in compairison. Texas
white tails seem to be melt when hit with this rifle. The 100
grainers at 3600 fps were deadly, the factory 100 grainers
tended to blow up, but my reloads did not, think the folks
at Winchester considered it a varmit bullet! If they had
brought out a 110 grain and a median weight like 125 grain
I think the 264 would have fared much better! The factory
140 grain load over pentatrated on smaller deer and lost it`s
flatter trajectory advantage! My Dad had taken over my 7mag
and when I told him he could have it if he paid my car insurance!
He was so happy that he planned a Montana mue deer hunt!
All along the long drive he teased me about the 264 and how
much better the 7 mag was! That was until a nice buck was seen
sneaking out of the back side of a draw and surely would have
gotten away, except he stopped to look back! He folded up
with the shot and my Pop just looked at me with strange look!
He thought he was too far away, but the 264 put a halt to the
teaseing! I have taken alot of game with the round over the
years! It is everything it was supposed to be! For open country
deer, sheep and goats it is truly a fine round! If you are after
Moose and Bear then take the Alaskan the 338mag, they are
as fine apair today as they were nearly 50 years ago!