Originally developed in 1923 and released by Winchester in 1925 this cartridge is basically a necked down .30.06 Springfield.
It is undoubtedly one of the most widely used rifle cartridges ever and has been in and out of fashion amongst deer stalkers and hunters ever since its first introduction.
(Left: The .270 can be adapted to accept a variety of bullets)
The Calibre for many is synonymous with the famous American Gun Writer Jack O'Connor who wrote for 'Outdoor Life' for some 30 years. Jack O'Connor proclaimed the calibres praises for all kinds of game and today it is still a calibre that many feel ideal for Uk Deer Stalking whilst also being suitable for larger species such as Boar and Elk.
Typically used with 130 grain bullets the .270 can propel a bullet at around 3100fps or with a slightly heavier 150 grain bullet at around 2850fps. This produces some great terminal ballistics at long ranges and as such it is a first choice for many stalkers wishing to hunt larger deer species at longer ranges.
It is for these reasons perhaps not surprising therefore that it has been highly popular amongst Highland stalkers and the Scottish Forestry Commission who are often required to cull Deer at longer ranges than might be typical for a lowland stalker.
With 2700 ft lbs of energy at the muzzle the .270 Winchester has similar energy levels to the .308 Winchester however it is of course flatter shooting. That said there are draw backs and these include what some might find a slightly snappy kick which for many new comers to deer stalking can result in 'flinching' when taking the shot. That added to a significant muzzle blast and slightly more expensive ammunition means that it is for many lowland stalkers less desirable than some other calibres.
On the plus side it can be relatively versatile and for home loaders can be used with anything from 90 - 180 grain ammunition. The popularity of the calibre amongst UK stalkers is also improved due to the now frequent use of sound moderators which both decrease the muzzle blast and recoil to more manageable levels.
Typical Ballistics: (130 grain bullet)
Muzzle Energy: 2700 ft/lbs
Muzzle Velocity: 3100 fps