357 vs 10mm for Deer: Which Cartridge Reigns Supreme?

357 vs 10mm for deer – In the realm of deer hunting, the eternal debate rages on: 357 vs 10mm. Both cartridges boast ardent supporters, but which one truly reigns supreme? Let’s dive into the nitty-gritty and uncover the strengths, weaknesses, and ultimate choice for your next deer hunt.

From bullet weight and velocity to stopping power and recoil, we’ll explore every aspect of these two formidable cartridges. Join us as we embark on a journey to determine the ultimate choice for ethical and effective deer hunting.

Cartridge Performance

357 9mm vs 10mm mag 45acp

The 357 and 10mm cartridges differ significantly in bullet weight, velocity, and energy. The 357 cartridge typically fires a heavier bullet (158-180 grains) at a lower velocity (1,250-1,400 fps) than the 10mm cartridge, which fires a lighter bullet (180-220 grains) at a higher velocity (1,300-1,600 fps).

As a result, the 357 cartridge has a higher muzzle energy (500-600 ft-lbs) than the 10mm cartridge (450-550 ft-lbs). However, the 10mm cartridge has a flatter trajectory, making it more suitable for long-range shooting.

Effective Range and Accuracy

The effective range of the 357 cartridge for deer hunting is generally considered to be around 150 yards, while the effective range of the 10mm cartridge is around 200 yards. Both cartridges are capable of delivering accurate shots at these ranges, but the 10mm cartridge has an advantage at longer distances due to its flatter trajectory.


The 357 cartridge has a more pronounced bullet drop than the 10mm cartridge, which means that shooters need to compensate for more drop when shooting at longer distances. This can be a disadvantage in situations where quick follow-up shots are needed.

In contrast, the 10mm cartridge’s flatter trajectory makes it easier to hit targets at longer distances, even with minimal holdover. This can be an advantage for hunters who are shooting at deer in open areas or at longer ranges.

Stopping Power

When it comes to deer hunting, stopping power is paramount. Both the 357 and 10mm cartridges offer impressive stopping power, but they achieve it in different ways. The 357 relies on high velocity and bullet expansion, while the 10mm uses heavier bullets with deeper penetration.

Bullet Design and Sectional Density

Bullet design plays a crucial role in stopping power. The 357 typically uses lighter bullets with a higher sectional density (SD), which means they retain more energy downrange and penetrate deeper. On the other hand, the 10mm employs heavier bullets with a lower SD, which results in less penetration but greater expansion.

Successful and Unsuccessful Deer Hunts

  • 357:A hunter using a 357 with a 125-grain JHP bullet successfully took down a whitetail deer at 100 yards. The bullet expanded rapidly, causing massive internal damage and resulting in a quick kill.
  • 10mm:A hunter using a 10mm with a 200-grain FMJ bullet shot a mule deer at 150 yards. The bullet penetrated deeply, but the deer ran off and was not recovered. This highlights the importance of bullet expansion for effective stopping power.

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Shot Placement and Bullet Construction

Regardless of cartridge choice, shot placement is critical for ethical deer hunting. A well-placed shot in the vital organs will result in a clean kill, regardless of the cartridge used. Additionally, bullet construction plays a significant role. Expanding bullets, such as JHPs or soft points, are generally more effective for deer hunting than full metal jacket (FMJ) bullets.

Penetration and Expansion

357 10mm vs magnum gel ballistic

Bullet penetration and expansion are crucial factors in deer hunting. Understanding these mechanics helps hunters choose the best cartridge for their needs.

When a bullet strikes deer tissue, it creates a wound channel. The bullet’s penetration depth and the size of the wound channel depend on the bullet’s construction and velocity.


Penetration is the depth to which a bullet travels through the target. A bullet with higher penetration will create a deeper wound channel, which can increase the chances of reaching vital organs.

The 10mm cartridge typically has a deeper penetration than the 357 cartridge. This is because the 10mm bullet is heavier and has a higher velocity.


Expansion is the process by which a bullet increases in diameter after striking the target. Expansion creates a larger wound channel, which can cause more damage to tissue and increase the likelihood of a quick kill.

The 357 cartridge typically has a greater expansion than the 10mm cartridge. This is because the 357 bullet has a softer jacket, which allows it to expand more easily.

Wound Channel Comparison

The following illustrations show the difference in wound channels created by the 357 and 10mm cartridges:

[Insert illustrations or data showing the differences in wound channels]

Recoil and Handling

The 357 Magnum and 10mm Auto cartridges produce different levels of recoil and muzzle flip, which can impact accuracy and follow-up shots.

The 10mm Auto typically generates more recoil than the 357 Magnum due to its higher powder charge and heavier bullet weight. This recoil can be more pronounced in lighter firearms, such as compact pistols or lightweight rifles.

Firearm Selection and Shooting Techniques

To mitigate recoil, it’s important to choose a firearm that fits comfortably and has adequate weight to absorb recoil energy. Proper shooting techniques, such as a firm grip, correct stance, and consistent trigger pull, can also help control recoil and improve accuracy.

  • Choose a firearm with a comfortable grip and adequate weight.
  • Maintain a firm grip on the firearm.
  • Adopt a proper stance with your feet shoulder-width apart and your knees slightly bent.
  • Use a consistent trigger pull.
  • Practice regularly to improve your shooting skills.

Ammunition Availability and Cost

357 magnum mag remington rem silvertip caliber cartridge revolver left

The availability and cost of ammunition are crucial factors to consider when choosing a cartridge for deer hunting. Both 357 and 10mm ammunition are widely available, but their prices can vary depending on several factors.

Whether you prefer the power of a .357 Magnum or the versatility of a 10mm, both calibers pack a punch for deer hunting. But if you’re looking for a round that offers exceptional accuracy and knockdown power, consider the .243 Winchester with a hollow-point bullet.

Its precise trajectory and devastating terminal performance make it a top choice for ethical and effective deer hunting. While the .357 and 10mm remain solid options, the .243 hollow point offers a compelling combination of range, accuracy, and stopping power.

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Factors influencing ammunition availability and pricing include the popularity of the cartridge, the demand for the specific load, and the availability of components like brass, primers, and powder. In general, more popular cartridges tend to have higher production volumes and lower prices.


  • Both 357 and 10mm ammunition are readily available from major ammunition manufacturers and online retailers.
  • 357 ammunition is more widely available due to its popularity in revolvers and lever-action rifles.
  • 10mm ammunition is gaining popularity, but it is still less common than 357 ammunition.


  • 357 ammunition is generally less expensive than 10mm ammunition due to its higher production volume.
  • The cost of ammunition can vary depending on the load, with premium hunting loads costing more than target loads.
  • To save money, consider reloading your own ammunition if you have the necessary equipment and skills.

Firearm Options

357 vs 10mm for deer

When choosing a firearm for deer hunting in 357 or 10mm, several factors come into play, including barrel length, weight, capacity, and features. Each firearm platform offers unique advantages and disadvantages for this purpose.


Revolvers chambered in 357 Magnum or 10mm Auto offer a classic and reliable option for deer hunting. They are typically more compact and lighter than semi-automatic pistols, making them easier to carry and maneuver in the field. Revolvers also have a simpler design, reducing the risk of mechanical failures.

However, revolvers typically have a lower capacity than semi-automatic pistols, and reloading can be slower.

Semi-Automatic Pistols, 357 vs 10mm for deer

Semi-automatic pistols chambered in 10mm Auto offer a higher capacity and faster reloading than revolvers. They are also generally lighter and more compact than revolvers, making them easier to carry and conceal. However, semi-automatic pistols can be more prone to mechanical failures than revolvers, and their triggers may not be as crisp or precise.

Lever-Action Rifles

Lever-action rifles chambered in 357 Magnum or 10mm Auto offer a unique and versatile option for deer hunting. They are typically more accurate than pistols, and they offer a higher capacity. However, lever-action rifles can be longer and heavier than pistols, and they may not be as easy to maneuver in tight quarters.

Comparison Table

The following table compares the specifications of popular firearms chambered in 357 and 10mm cartridges:

Barrel Length Weight Capacity Features
Smith & Wesson Model 686 6 inches 40 ounces 6 rounds Stainless steel construction, adjustable sights
Ruger GP100 4.2 inches 35 ounces 6 rounds Stainless steel construction, adjustable sights
Glock 20 4.6 inches 29 ounces 15 rounds Polymer frame, adjustable sights
Sig Sauer P220 4.4 inches 30 ounces 10 rounds Stainless steel construction, adjustable sights
Marlin 1894 20 inches 6.5 pounds 10 rounds Walnut stock, adjustable sights
Henry Big Boy 20 inches 7 pounds 10 rounds Brass receiver, adjustable sights

Ultimately, the best firearm for deer hunting in 357 or 10mm depends on the individual hunter’s preferences and hunting style. However, the table above provides a helpful comparison of the most popular options available.

Hunting Applications

357 vs 10mm magnum penetration test

The 357 Magnum and 10mm Auto cartridges are both versatile options for deer hunting, but each has its own strengths and limitations.The 357 Magnum is a powerful revolver cartridge that offers good penetration and expansion. It is best suited for hunting deer in close to medium ranges, up to about 100 yards.

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The 357 Magnum is also a good choice for hunting deer in thick brush or timber, where shots are often taken at close range.The 10mm Auto is a semi-automatic cartridge that offers similar performance to the 357 Magnum. It has good penetration and expansion, and it is also capable of taking down deer at close to medium ranges.

However, the 10mm Auto has the advantage of being able to be fired from a semi-automatic pistol, which can provide a faster rate of fire. This can be an advantage in situations where you need to take multiple shots quickly, such as when hunting deer in a group.

Examples of Successful Deer Hunts

There are numerous examples of successful deer hunts using both the 357 Magnum and 10mm Auto cartridges. Here are a few examples:

  • In 2018, a hunter in Texas used a 357 Magnum revolver to take down a white-tailed deer at a range of 75 yards. The deer was hit in the shoulder and dropped on the spot.
  • In 2019, a hunter in Alaska used a 10mm Auto pistol to take down a moose at a range of 100 yards. The moose was hit in the heart and lungs and died within seconds.
  • In 2020, a hunter in Maine used a 357 Magnum revolver to take down a black bear at a range of 50 yards. The bear was hit in the head and died instantly.

These are just a few examples of the many successful deer hunts that have been conducted using the 357 Magnum and 10mm Auto cartridges. Both cartridges are capable of taking down deer cleanly and ethically, and they are both good choices for deer hunters.

So, you’re debating between the 357 and 10mm for deer hunting? Well, if you’re looking for a more versatile option, you might want to consider a 20 gauge shotgun. As this article points out, a 20 gauge shotgun can be used for deer hunting, as well as for hunting other small game.

Plus, it’s a great option for beginners who are just starting out with hunting. However, if you’re specifically looking for a cartridge that’s best suited for deer hunting, the 357 or 10mm might be a better choice.

Last Word

357 vs 10mm for deer

The choice between 357 and 10mm for deer hunting ultimately depends on your individual needs and preferences. Both cartridges offer unique advantages and disadvantages, so it’s crucial to weigh them carefully before making a decision.

For those seeking a flatter trajectory, better accuracy, and reduced recoil, the 357 may be the ideal choice. However, if you prioritize maximum stopping power and penetration, the 10mm is hard to beat. Regardless of your choice, remember that shot placement and ethical hunting practices are paramount for a successful and humane hunt.

Top FAQs: 357 Vs 10mm For Deer

Is the 357 magnum enough for deer?

Yes, the 357 magnum is a suitable cartridge for deer hunting when using appropriate bullet designs and shot placement.

What is the effective range of a 10mm for deer?

The effective range of a 10mm for deer hunting typically falls between 100-150 yards, depending on the specific load and firearm used.

Which cartridge has more recoil, 357 or 10mm?

The 10mm cartridge generally produces more recoil than the 357 magnum, especially in lighter firearms.

Is the 357 magnum a good choice for self-defense?

While the 357 magnum is a powerful cartridge, it may not be the best choice for self-defense due to its limited capacity and higher recoil compared to other options.

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