You know people complain that the old 45/70 isn't a long range cartridge....Well, there are people that make shots at all the ranges that the AR is doing and hitting!!! This is with 400gr projectiles!!!
Yes they are 'rainbows', but it has been proven also that these rainbows blow through old wooden cabins at that distance. People like John Taffin and other 'old timers' have witnessed this first hand. Buffalo have been killed at very long range and have been done so with quick dispatch. It takes practice and some skill, but it can be done.
The complaints of the 'oh that rifle is old and can't hit anything' is as old as we have rifles. When the 30/30 came out, it was the latest 'magnum' and thought to be the end all to everything rifles. It shot sooooo much flatter and killed everything that walked, why would anyone use the older, slower, rainbow shooting 45/70 when you didn't need to use that much elevation. Making hold over shots was easier.
This started the whole 'flatter shooting', 'faster, lighter bullets are better' trend that has just been getting bigger and bigger for the last 115 years!!!!! Now, if you don't shoot the latest whiz bang short, fat, long, skinny, mega magnum that will clip the wings off a fly at 1000yds...........your rifle just isn't any good. Marketing is a wonderful thing.
Why I remember shooting the first Camp Perry match using my issue rifle...back in the big war...you know the war to end all wars!!! Well, you know that my old friend York, you do remember, ol' Alvin...you remember, he was that sergeant that captured all those Germans with that same rifle and the good ol' 45 that J M Browning built for us...well, I remember using my 'ol trusty' Springfield, model of 1903 and I could hit that little black target way out there during the match. Of course, it was loaded with the latest and greatest caliber ever invented. The 30 caliber government of 1906!!! Why ol' Alvin could part the hair of those Germans at pert near a mile with his!!!
That was a good round until, Jack O'Connor got a hold of a hotter, necked down version that the good folks at Winchester, you know, those makers of the best rifle ever made!!! Of course, the good folks at Winchester stole the innards and workings of their design from the same Germans we were fighting back in the big war....you remember, the war to end all wars!! Well that German fella, Mauser, did design a good rifle and using that design, Winchester, could develop some hot rounds...like the 270 I was beginning to talk about. Well, it seems ol' O'Connor says he can take any animal that walks the earth, well, North America at least. You know it shoots flatter and is more accurate at distance, at least that's what that fella O'Connor writes every month.
Now, you know, there is this fella I just heard about named Weatherby. You know he took that same great Winchester and started making his own hotter, flatter shooting, harder hitting rounds called a 'magnum' I believe. This is a very modern cartridge!!! You can throw all your old Springfields away and just get this round chambered in your rifle and you can kill those old woolly elephants.....if they were still around......but you could!!!
Well, now we have all those shorter, fatter, longer, skinnier, mega magnums and guess what??????
Welcome to the future.........remember the past!!! Use what you got and get acquainted with it's features and quirks. Shoot it often and make your shots count. That is the most important thing to remember.
We in the AR community have a great amount of choices in calibers. Just like in the bolt, lever, pump, and single shot rifle fraternities, the semi-auto is a tool. Learn to shoot it well in what ever caliber you want. But don't make fun of the older gent (me) when I saddle up next to you on the firing line and bring out my old 45/70 and start shooting one ragged hole at distances that makes your jaw drop!!!
BTW, yes, the old 45/70 has, will, and still can take any animal that walks the earth............including those hairy woolly elephants!!!