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Berger #7733847 01/31/20 01:30 AM
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Looking for pics and experience with Berger hunting bullets. I always heard/read that they are extremely explosive under 4-500 yards. I'm wanting a high BC bullet for my 6.5 PRC to help when hunting in windy conditions, but I doubt I'll ever shoot an animal past 400 and I always try to get closer. What kind of meat damage will I find at 100-350 yards? Doesn't look like the ELD-X is much better on meat damage. I'm sure a shoulder shot will wreck at least one, if not both....but tight behind the shoulder? Will be after a big New Mexico Mulie this year and know the wind will be challenging.


Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733862 01/31/20 01:40 AM
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The shortest answer I can give you about Berger VLD Hunting bullets is run them heavy for cartridge.

My only rifle loaded with them is 7 Rem Mag, 180 VLD-H, 3000 fps MV.

Large game kills:
Mule deer buck 50 yards
Bull elk 250 yards
Cow elk 465 yards
Cow elk 510 yards

Put a 200 pound sow on the ground at exactly 700 yards.

I load them for a friend. .300 Win Mag 210 gr VLD-H, 2780 fps MV. He's killed several mule deer and several hogs with it. The farthest hog was 490 yards. Every time he brags on that load. Says whatever it hits dies quickly, sometimes piles right up.

The explosive term is applied to lighter bullets, high MV, and close shot. Slow them down, and they pass through leaving a +1" exit wound in my experience.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733867 01/31/20 01:47 AM
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Limited experience still with the eldx for me but so far really pleased with it. I think hornady’s decision to move the interlock ring from the rear of the bullet to the midsection was a good one. I’ve killed 3 deer and a hog with them this season from 50-180 yards nothing but good to say so far.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733915 01/31/20 02:34 AM
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From my experience with the 6.5 Berger VLD Hunting, I will hunt with them no more. I tried a few critters and got varied results with lack of consistency. I was starting these at 2900fps from a 6.5-284. Saw one pencil through on an almost straight on frontal shot on a doe that hit no bone on entrance, little hole through one lung and a hole larger than a football on exit after hitting the next to the back rib, shot was only about 85 yards. large boar hog 150 yards that I did not recover, hit in the shoulder and he went over 150 yards before going into thick brush and wound up hog/coyote food. Doe at a little under 300 yards good damage and about 1.5 inch exit double lung shot DRT. Most of my shots are under 300 yards and I will use a different bullet. After that I got 130gr Swift Siroccos and have been pleased running them at 2900 also, that is where I got the best accuracy with it. Next bullet I will try when I get around to it is the 140 Nosler Accubond.

Re: Berger [Re: FiremanJG] #7733927 01/31/20 02:44 AM
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Originally Posted by FiremanJG
The shortest answer I can give you about Berger VLD Hunting bullets is run them heavy for cartridge.

My only rifle loaded with them is 7 Rem Mag, 180 VLD-H, 3000 fps MV.

Large game kills:
Mule deer buck 50 yards
Bull elk 250 yards
Cow elk 465 yards
Cow elk 510 yards

Put a 200 pound sow on the ground at exactly 700 yards.

I load them for a friend. .300 Win Mag 210 gr VLD-H, 2780 fps MV. He's killed several mule deer and several hogs with it. The farthest hog was 490 yards. Every time he brags on that load. Says whatever it hits dies quickly, sometimes piles right up.

The explosive term is applied to lighter bullets, high MV, and close shot. Slow them down, and they pass through leaving a +1" exit wound in my experience.



140 gr Berger Elite hunter hybrid heavy enough?


Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733929 01/31/20 02:45 AM
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If I could buy a box of Hornady match ammo with a 130 Berger hunter vld I would over the eldx. I prefer the bullet blowing up. I’m not a meat saver

Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733932 01/31/20 02:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Drop Tine
Originally Posted by FiremanJG
The shortest answer I can give you about Berger VLD Hunting bullets is run them heavy for cartridge.

My only rifle loaded with them is 7 Rem Mag, 180 VLD-H, 3000 fps MV.

Large game kills:
Mule deer buck 50 yards
Bull elk 250 yards
Cow elk 465 yards
Cow elk 510 yards

Put a 200 pound sow on the ground at exactly 700 yards.

I load them for a friend. .300 Win Mag 210 gr VLD-H, 2780 fps MV. He's killed several mule deer and several hogs with it. The farthest hog was 490 yards. Every time he brags on that load. Says whatever it hits dies quickly, sometimes piles right up.

The explosive term is applied to lighter bullets, high MV, and close shot. Slow them down, and they pass through leaving a +1" exit wound in my experience.



140 gr Berger Elite hunter hybrid heavy enough?



Well they make a 156 gr EOL, so that's what I would load in the bigger PRC cartridge.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733947 01/31/20 03:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Drop Tine
Originally Posted by FiremanJG
The shortest answer I can give you about Berger VLD Hunting bullets is run them heavy for cartridge.

My only rifle loaded with them is 7 Rem Mag, 180 VLD-H, 3000 fps MV.

Large game kills:
Mule deer buck 50 yards
Bull elk 250 yards
Cow elk 465 yards
Cow elk 510 yards

Put a 200 pound sow on the ground at exactly 700 yards.

I load them for a friend. .300 Win Mag 210 gr VLD-H, 2780 fps MV. He's killed several mule deer and several hogs with it. The farthest hog was 490 yards. Every time he brags on that load. Says whatever it hits dies quickly, sometimes piles right up.

The explosive term is applied to lighter bullets, high MV, and close shot. Slow them down, and they pass through leaving a +1" exit wound in my experience.



140 gr Berger Elite hunter hybrid heavy enough?


It’s plenty. I killed my mule deer this year with 257 wby 115gr. Same load also this year, killed a pronghorn, 3 WTs and 3 Hogs... and last year was a very very light year for it killing wise, normally well into double digits

My mule deer this year, I shot was head on neck and took few inches of spine, and still weight 81oz. That’s 70% retention with an impact velocity over 3000ft/s

Only bad thing is I do think you can load them to hot and damage the jacket integrity but with PRC you will be fine



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Re: Berger [Re: BOBO the Clown] #7733949 01/31/20 03:13 AM
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Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Originally Posted by Drop Tine



140 gr Berger Elite hunter hybrid heavy enough?


It’s plenty. I killed my mule deer this year with 257 wby 115gr. Same load also this year, killed a pronghorn, 3 WTs and 3 Hogs... and last year was a very very light year for it killing wise, normally well into double digits

My mule deer this year, I shot was head on neck and took few inches of spine, and still weight 81oz. That’s 70% retention with an impact velocity over 3000ft/s

Only bad thing is I do think you can load them to hot and damage the jacket integrity but with PRC you will be fine



I’ve also killed a pile of stuff with a 130 gr VLD via 6.5 creedmoor, it works fine.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733954 01/31/20 03:21 AM
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I don't think the difference between a good BC bullet and and a ultra high BC bullet will make much difference with the wind. At least not under 400 yards. I would go with a 140 Accubond.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7733969 01/31/20 03:36 AM
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Bergers are just fine off of heavy bone. If you want slightly tougher run the target version.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7734686 02/01/20 01:43 AM
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Berger 215gr hit like Thor's Hammer in my 30 Nosler. Love 'em!!

Last edited by 30378; 02/01/20 01:43 AM.

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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7734704 02/01/20 01:59 AM
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I saw this thread last night and wanted to reply.... I agree with kmon1, won't use Berger VLD Hunting Bullets for large game again. I drew Elephant Mountain Mule Deer hunt this year with four tags. Ended up taking 2 bucks and 2 does. The first deer I took was a doe at about 130yrds out. Lined up on the shoulder and squeezed the shot. She just stood there and looked around seeming to wonder what was up. I thought somehow I'd missed. As she began to walk, it was clear she was hit but maybe only wounded and perhaps my placement was bad. I began to doubt my placement and honestly by skill on the rifle. She kept walking and staggered then finally laid down. When we retrieved her, she had a pencil entry on the shoulder and a baseball exit on the offside. The other doe was shot at a little over 200yrds, again square into the shoulder but you couldn't see that from the facing side. She walked at least 25yds and probably farther loosing blood like a firehose. The guide could see it but I couldn't. Likewise she finally laid over with another baseball size wound on the off side.

The bucks were another matter. The first one took two shots, one in the shoulder and one in the chest. No exits and he shook the first one off as if it was nothing. He finally went down for good. Pencil entries and no exit wounds. I hate it when an animal isn't down quickly.

We cleaned the animals and found copper shards of the bullets. They do "grenade" as others have described. I have the small remnants of one. My suspicion is that once the VLDs hit bone and begin to fragment they also loose a lot of energy. I admit, this is the first time I have taken mule deer. But having taken a few white tails with something like an SST, the experience was quite different. I've never seen a white tail hit by an SST simply look around. I have seen them kick a couple of times and fall over.

Combination I was using.... Tikka 7mm-08, Berger VLD 140gr Hunting Bullets, H4530 @ 2800fps. It was the most accurate combination I found.... but I am switching back to SST.

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Re: Berger [Re: StraitShot] #7734710 02/01/20 02:07 AM
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In, pass through vitals, big exit. I don't understand the complaint.

All manner of bullets are somewhat of a gamble going for vitals. If you want them dead before they hit the ground, shoot the brainstem.


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Re: Berger [Re: FiremanJG] #7734734 02/01/20 02:21 AM
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I have taken White Tail and of course hogs... never seen an animal just stand there... like nothings going on after taking a hit... and as I said, the bucks were another matter... when hit, they laid down and then we watched and waited for what seemed a good while looking for another shot opportunity. That is time the animal is obviously suffering. SSTs seem to liquify almost any organ they touch. These bullets just seem to shred tissue. I might not group as tightly on paper with an SST but I think it will put them down faster.

Re: Berger [Re: StraitShot] #7734777 02/01/20 03:04 AM
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To each their own.

Not to be rude, but maybe this is a shot placement matter? Plenty of people I know swear by Bergers, for the polar opposite reasons, animals fall over stiff legged for them.


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Re: Berger [Re: FiremanJG] #7734891 02/01/20 05:35 AM
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I am reasonably certain where I hit them, although not happy with the result.... in the end I filled four tags. Even so, to each their own.

Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7734978 02/01/20 02:03 PM
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Berger describes their performance as penetrating 2-3 inches and fragmenting up to 80% of their weight. Entry holes are tiny but internal damage is massive. The hollow point of the Berger is a pin hole, it penetrates 2-3 inches before the nose crushes and the bullet tumbles and sheds apart.

I never get upset for a bullet doing what it's supposed too. I would expect massive damage from a Berger. Poor performance would be little damage.

If more traditional performance on game is desired on game, there are endless other choices.


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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7734985 02/01/20 02:08 PM
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I use 130 grain Hunting VLD’s in my CZ 550. They work well on whitetails.


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Re: Berger [Re: booradley] #7737047 02/04/20 04:03 AM
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I’m using VLDs in both a 25-06 and a 7 RM....these are hand loads courtesy of Chad. If you don’t like the Bergers, then shot placement, as opposed to your marksmanship, may be the issue. Deer fall where they stood when the high shoulder mark is found. Pigs are in the ear hole at any distance and I’ve never had one take a step when the ear hole is the POI. VLDs through the shoulder of a deer is a guaranteed tracking job....plenty of blood to follow but I’ve tracked shoulder shot deer up to 100-150 yards. If you’re shooting VLDs in or behind the shoulder/ribs of a deer, then you’re using the right tool in the wrong way if you value terminal performance.

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Re: Berger [Re: Drop Tine] #7737119 02/04/20 12:04 PM
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I don't have a 6.5 cal but do run Bergers in My 308, 300win, 30-06 and 270. I believe the Bergers are most effective when shooting a high shoulder shot. Never had one not exit the deer and all leave around a 1"-2'' exit wound. I have only ever had 1 deer not DRT. Buck was right at 245 yards out but was around 20' below me and quartering away, I hit him just a little low and behind the shoulder. He ran 60 yards and piled up. leaving a blood trail that a blind man could follow. Ive killed more hogs and coyotes than I can count at ranges past 400 yards to around 700 and the Bergers worked great. I never noticed excess meat damage in any deer ive shot with the Bergers.


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