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Self defense pistol against Mountain Lions

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  • Self defense pistol against Mountain Lions

    Here in the Rocky Mountains its not uncommon for mountain lions to attack humans, usually small children and human pets. But should I encounter a starving mother mountain lion and I am in between it and its litter what pistol would you trust to kill a mountain lion with one shot?

    I was thinking a semi-auto .45 ACP should do the trick but what of other rounds like .357 Magnum, .38 Special, .380 ACP, .40 S&W and 9mm?
    The Europa Barbarorum II team [M2TW] needs YOUR HELP NOW HERE!

  • #2
    Another requirement is that the pistol have a barrel over 3.5" and cost less than $300.
    The Europa Barbarorum II team [M2TW] needs YOUR HELP NOW HERE!

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    • #3
      Pistols take a lot of training to be able to hit anything. When the target is moving even more and it starts to become a matter of luck as well if you hit it.

      "Ask not what your country can do for you"

      Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

      you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Frtigern View Post
        Another requirement is that the pistol have a barrel over 3.5" and cost less than $300.
        Jeez... looks like a shotgun probably is your best option.

        In pawn shops I have seen a couple S&W 40 cal for 350$, with the right ammo that might do the job. Nothing else fits the bill today, pistols are severely over-priced.

        Maybe you should get a Ruger super-Blackhawk, if it's over 100 yards away you could still clip it with one of those.
        "Why is the Rum gone?"

        -Captain Jack

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Frtigern View Post
          Another requirement is that the pistol have a barrel over 3.5" and cost less than $300.
          Don't take this the wrong way, but unless you're trying to buy a POS, you can't meet that last requirement. I haven't bought a good pistol new for less than 400 dollars in years. .22s don't count.

          If you're really worried about grizzlies and mountain lions, I'd recommend something in no less than .357Magnum, and preferably better. Go to pawn shops and look at 4-6" barrelled revolvers in .357 and .44 Magnum calibers. 357 has a small advantage that you can shoot .38 special loads for practice or 'small snakes (humans)', while giving you the ability to upload significantly before moving into the woods.

          IIRC if a mountain lion is inside pistol-shot range, he's likely going to kill you, unless you did something unusual to startle him. Therefore, you want a pistol that will put him down in 1 shot. Even if it's not a kill you want to temporarily disable him with the first round so you can follow it up and save your arse. You won't have the time to burn off more than 6 rounds, and you need the individual firepower.

          Personally, I'd say go with a shotgun loaded with 00Buck or slug, preferably slug, or a rifle. Shotgun is prefered if you're not much of a shooter, as it's more forgiving. Either a 12 Gauge shotgun or a .270 or better rifle will kill a mountain lion.

          For pistols, look for Smith and Wesson Revolvers in K-N Frames, Calibers .357-.44, there are some other hunting calibers, like .454 Casull that will also work well for this application but they're more rare and expensive bullets and recoil is also heavier. You can also look for Ruger Revolvers in the same range of calibers. Both manufacturers make very good revolvers, and you can likely find some used. One possibility is to check out law enforcement surplus, as some agencies are still getting rid of .357 revolvers for autos, and their revolvers will likely be cheaper than buying new. Be Very Wary about purchasing a firearm from a non-reputable manufacturer, as not only can these fail when you need them, they can also be dangerous to handle (personal experience of the safety on a Jimenez .380 not working. Fortunately for me there were no rounds in the weapon). I've only given you 2 manufacturers, but both are arguably the Best in the business of large-caliber revolvers.
          Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

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          • #6
            Thanks TacCovert, I considered a shotgun but a shot gun is something you carry, while a pistol is just on you. Also for drawing, aiming and firing a pistol is quicker. I was thinking a Mossberg 500 without a stock over my shoulder would be almost as quick.

            If I had the money I wish I could drop it on a really nice .44 magnum. Revolvers always seem cheaper than autos and good idea for looking for Police surplus .357 revolvers. What do you think of the 7.63x38R's stopping power? like those in these Nagant revolvers:
            The Europa Barbarorum II team [M2TW] needs YOUR HELP NOW HERE!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Frtigern View Post
              Thanks TacCovert, I considered a shotgun but a shot gun is something you carry, while a pistol is just on you. Also for drawing, aiming and firing a pistol is quicker. I was thinking a Mossberg 500 without a stock over my shoulder would be almost as quick.

              If I had the money I wish I could drop it on a really nice .44 magnum. Revolvers always seem cheaper than autos and good idea for looking for Police surplus .357 revolvers. What do you think of the 7.63x38R's stopping power? like those in these Nagant revolvers:
              IMO if your worrying about running into a cat then your better off with a gun in your hands and not in a holster. Unless your a quick draw artist. Pack both if you wish but for me, give me the shotgun with OO loads. Might not be good for a Griz but enough for a cat.
              "Ask not what your country can do for you"

              Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

              you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Frtigern View Post
                Here in the Rocky Mountains its not uncommon for mountain lions to attack humans, usually small children and human pets. But should I encounter a starving mother mountain lion and I am in between it and its litter what pistol would you trust to kill a mountain lion with one shot?

                I was thinking a semi-auto .45 ACP should do the trick but what of other rounds like .357 Magnum, .38 Special, .380 ACP, .40 S&W and 9mm?
                In my part of the Rockies we have both mountain lions and bears.

                I recommend at least a .357 Magnum with hollow point ammo, but you won't find one at that price. Personally, i would go with a .44 Mag for the increase in stopping power.
                My own answer to both issues has always been a 12ga Savage pump action shotgun, law enforcement model (22 in barrel) with an eight round magazine loaded with alternating 00 Buck and .50 call solid slugs. That load will stop a pickup truck in it's tracks, and it will for damned sure stop a lion or a bear.

                However, for convenience sake I am in the market right now for a large caliber handgun
                to carry while Geo-Caching, in order to leave both hands free.

                GUN CONTROL IS HAVING THE RIGHT GRIP.
                Last edited by Mountain Man; 16 Jan 12, 15:45.
                Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

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                • #9

                  Nothing less
                  Radio Paris Ment...
                  Radio Paris Ment...
                  Radio Paris est Allemand...

                  - Radio London opening intro

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I want one of these:

                    Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Frtigern View Post

                      If I had the money I wish I could drop it on a really nice .44 magnum. Revolvers always seem cheaper than autos and good idea for looking for Police surplus .357 revolvers. What do you think of the 7.63x38R's stopping power? like those in these Nagant revolvers:
                      Don't know much about mountain lions, but old Nagant if I remember correct was somewhat underpowered even for two legged opponents, I wouldn't recommend it for any kind of self defence.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        You'll want something that you won't get tried of carrying. If you think that maybe an issue I would select a revolver over an automatic and something that fits in a fanny pack. I would also go with a compact in .38 Special at minimum. Some .38 Special revolvers are also rated to fire .357 Magnum which gives you the option of going to a larger caliber if needed. It also gives you the flexibility to practice at the range with the less powerful .38 Special. I would also go for a shrouded hammer if possible, this will prevent the hammer from getting snagged while drawing. You can also go with an Airweight if you feel you need a lighter pistol.

                        My worst jump story:
                        My 13th jump was on the 13th day of the month, aircraft number 013.
                        As recorded on my DA Form 1307 Individual Jump Log.
                        No lie.

                        ~
                        "Everything looks all right. Have a good jump, eh."
                        -2 Commando Jumpmaster

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          .41 magnum.

                          If you care to fire the best...

                          Credo quia absurdum.


                          Quantum mechanics describes nature as absurd from the point of view of common sense. And yet it fully agrees with experiment. So I hope you can accept nature as She is - absurd! - Richard Feynman

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bwaha View Post
                            .41 magnum.

                            If you care to fire the best...

                            Not a copy of the Colt Single Action Army.... I think it is.
                            My worst jump story:
                            My 13th jump was on the 13th day of the month, aircraft number 013.
                            As recorded on my DA Form 1307 Individual Jump Log.
                            No lie.

                            ~
                            "Everything looks all right. Have a good jump, eh."
                            -2 Commando Jumpmaster

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Now just what makes that the best Bwaha?

                              You shotgunners out there...consider substituting #1 buck for 00. Pellets are nearly the same size with more per shell.

                              And forget a shotgun with only a pistol grip stock; a full stock is easier to carry, faster, and much more controllable.
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