Buffalo Bore Ammunition Review

By: Dan Carlson

If you want to wring the maximum level of power performance out of your rifle or handgun, then get a box of Buffalo Bore ammo and prepare to be impressed.

Buffalo Bore loads its ammunition hot using specially imported non-canister powders, and is intended for use in the modern firearms indicated on each box only. Loaded with a variety of high-performance bullets from hard-cast lead to jacketed hollow-points, the result is devastating terminal performance on everything varmints to Cape buffalo in the hunting ammo line, and decisive in ending self-defense situations with the defensive handgun ammo line.
buffalo bore ammo

To evaluate these claims for myself, I purchased a couple of boxes of Buffalo Bore in .45-70 for use in my Marlin 1895 Guide Gun and headed to a shooting range. The load I selected was the 350-grain jacketed-flat-nose bullet called The Penetrator. Buffalo Bore's website claims a muzzle velocity for this load of 2,150 fps and muzzle energy of 3592 ft. lbs. It's recommended for use on game weighing up to 2,500 lbs. I compared these figures with similar standard .45-70 loads sold by two other major ammo makers and found Buffalo Bore boasting muzzle velocities nearly 300 fps. faster and almost twice as much muzzle energy.

The .45-70 has been around since the 1870s. Until the advent of newer, stronger modern rifle actions, the ammunition for this caliber was "loaded down" to prevent damage or injury if used in traditional Springfield-type trapdoor rifle replicas. The result was a "rainbow" trajectory that limited the useful range of the caliber for hunters. Sighting in a 300-grain bullet to hit about 1" high at 50 yards would put you dead-on at 100 yards, a foot low at 200 and nearly 4-ft. low at 300 yards.

Buffalo Bore loaded up the .45-70 to take advantage of the cartridge's potential in newer guns with stronger actions. Sighted to hit dead-on at 100 yards, the 350-grain Penetrator's published trajectory is 10" low at 200 yards and 20" below sight hold at 250 yards. Put simply, Buffalo Bore .45-70 shoots a bigger bullet faster and flatter than standard .45-70 loads resulting in the delivery of more energy downrange and into the target.
carl shooting

I have extensive experience shooting rifles ranging in caliber from .17 HMR to .470 Nitro Express and am no stranger to recoil. But shooting Buffalo Bore .45-70 off sandbags on a shooting bench got my attention. In fact, the surface of the bench was plywood and after a series of four three-shot groups to test for accuracy at 100 yards, the muzzle blast from the ammunition had removed the top layer and a half of the table's plywood. My 1895G has a good recoil pad, so I was wearing a light shirt during the test. The next day my shoulder bruise was evidence of my foolishness for doing so. However, though the Buffalo Bore ammo impact was stout at my end, there is no doubt in my mind about its ability to put down any creature in this hemisphere with a single well-placed shot.

In spite of the recoil, Buffalo Bore .45-70 ammo is the most accurate that my Guide Gun has ever fired. The three-shot groups consistently measured an inch or less at 100 yards with time between groups allowed for barrel cooling.

Cabela's carries a large selection of Buffalo Bore ammunition for both rifles and handguns. Because this ammunition is so powerful, make sure you read information provided with the product descriptions by the manufacturer to ensure that it can be safely fired in your gun. For calibers and bullet-type options, just type "Buffalo Bore" into the FIND box at the top of this page.