I bought my Mellennium Designed Muzzleloader "Buckwacka" .45 caliber black powder rifle about 3 years ago. I had previously owned and shot a few inline muzzleloaders since "coming over" from the traditional black powder rifle. Yet, when I shot those rifles and carried them afield, I never felt like I was shooting a 'real' rifle plus most of them left something to be desired in the way they shot and operated.
After writing about how the .243 Winchester was not a good round for the beginning deer hunter, I received a number of emails asking me which rounds I would consider for new deer hunters.
Here's My Pick of Rifle Cartridges For the Beginning Deer Hunter
Note: This list is in no order. Any of these cartridges are more than enough for any Whitetail or Mule Deer buck that walks.
For the last decade or so, it seems there's been a race between gun manufacturers to see who can whip out the fanciest rifle in the most bizarre calibers with ultra magnum velocities with matching price tags.
If you listened to all the hype, you'd think that older guns and standard calibers were no longer adequate to kill a deer, or any other game animal.
Marlin has come out with the 308 Marlin Express. The 308 Marlin Express has ballistics that are comparable to the .308 Winchester. This means we know have a lever action rifle capable of reaching out and touching that buck at 400 yards.