FYI: the .454 Casull is a magnum cartridge based on the old .45 Colt cartridge case but longer length and loaded with a much more powerful powder charge. It has a very heavy recoil along with its immense stopping power. More than even the .44 Magnum. You also have the feature of being able to fire the less hard-kicking .45 Colt cartridge in a .454 Casull handgun. Naturally.454 Casull handguns have become popular self-defense weapons with American outdoorsman operating in Grizzly and Alaskan Brown Bear country.
Greg Brush, an Alaskan fishing guide, was ambushed with no warning by a charging bear. All he had time to do was pull out his .454 Casull and fire as fast as possible, while falling backwards after tripping on a branch. The Anchorage Daily News reports:
He drew a Ruger .454 Casull revolver. There was no time to aim, barely time to squeeze the trigger. He’s not sure whether he got off two shots or three, but one proved fatal.“Total luck shot,” he said.“It doesn’t get any closer. He slid by me on his chin when I shot him,” Brush said. “I was backpedaling as fast as I could. I wasn’t even aiming. I tripped over my own feet as I pulled the trigger.”He estimated that the animal weighed 900-plus pounds, and was 15 to 20 years old. It had grass packed in its molars and little fat on its bones.“It was starving to death and saw an opportunity,” Brush said.
I sometimes get asked what should be carried in bear country. I always say the same thing: “I know nothing about bears but if I was in bear country I would want a .44 Magnum by my side”. I despair when people say they would rather carry their 9mm or .40 S&W Glock because they can get off more shots! This story perfectly illustrates that you may only get off one or two shots at a charging 900 pound beast! A 9mm round is not going to do much good.
Greg was most likely carrying a Ruger Super Redhawk. The Low-Glare Stainless model has a 7.5″ barrel and is available chambered in .454 Casull or .45 Colt. It has a MSRP of $992.
Big thank you to Don for emailing me the link.
UPDATE: Commenters point out that he was using the Super Redhawk Alaskan. This snub nosed .454 Casull has a 2.5″ barrel . It also has a MSRP of $922. Thanks guys for the correction.
Tom Gresham has an interview with Greg on his Gun Talk show. Thanks to Jake for the link.