deer rifles under $500
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4 Great Deer Rifles for $500 or Less


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No hunter wants to take a subpar rifle into the field, but at the same time, not everyone can afford a $2,000 Weatherby. While finding a quality deer rifle on a tight budget can be a challenge, a little research shows there are great options out there for the everyone from the beginner to the frugal shopper. As long as you understand what performance features are a top priority, finding a firearm for less than $500 is actually pretty easy.

Plenty of major brands have tapped into the budget market, as Remington, Mossberg, Ruger, and Savage all offer rifles under this threshold. Lower-end rifles obviously sacrifice quality somewhere, so it's best to go in prepared and educated before making that final decision. To help you shop with ease, we've broken down design features for the best budget options on the market today.

Savage Axis

deer rifles under $500

The Savage Axis has quickly become one of the most popular entry-level deer rifles on today's market. You could make the argument this is a result of challenges in creating premiere bang-for-buck appeal to hunters and shooters alike, with the Axis being the most affordable of Savage's rifle options. It's sustained reputation is well known in hunting circles. At an MSRP of $419, this bolt-action rifle is both accurate and durable, featuring a 22-inch carbon steel barrel, which is made for heavy field use and pinpoint accuracy. Meanwhile it employs a lightweight synthetic stock, which gives hunters the ability to carry their firearm comfortably all day without feeling like they have to keep alternating shoulders. It features a magazine capacity of four rounds, and comes in the the following calibers: .223 Remington, .22-250 Remington, .243 Winchester, .25-06 Remington, .270 Winchester, .30-06 Springfield, .308 Winchester, .350 Legend, 6.5 Creedmoor, and 7mm-08 Remington.

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Remington 770

deer rifles under $500

Designed to be ready for the field straight out of the box, the Remington 770 is a popular option among entry-level hunters looking for a low-cost, bolt-action deer rifle. Already outfitted with a factory-installed, bore-sighted 3-9x40 scope, a new hunter won't have to navigate the troubles of picking the right scope and figuring out how to get it zeroed in. Additionally, considering it comes at a cost of less than $400 from most retailers, it's actually impressively functional and accurate, featuring a six-groove, button rifling system, which ensures pinpoint shooting from longer distances.

The 770 also prioritizes comfort, offering hunters an ergonomic, lightweight stock, which is contoured with a raised cheek piece and a textured forearm--a design that gives hunters an edge when it comes to positioning and shot control. Remington offers hunters a variety of choices regarding calibers in this lineup, including .243 Winchester, .270 Winchester, .308 Winchester, and .30-06 Springfield.

Ruger American Compact

deer rifles under $500

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Designed in 2011, the Ruger American has evolved from the new kid on the block to one of America's favorite economy rifle lineups. However, the most affordable of the bunch is also one of the most intriguing offers, as the Ruger American Compact only weighs 6 pounds. Both lightweight and reliable, this compact bolt-action rifle features an 18-inch, hammer-forged barrel designed for legitimate accuracy, as well as dual-cocking cams for easy cycling from the shoulder position. This is a great option for hunters who plan to be mobile in their hunting approach, as well as those who like to have an extra rifle that lives in their hunting truck. It comes in a nice variety of calibers, too, including .243 Winchester, .308 Winchester, 7mm-08 Remington, and 6.5 Creedmoor.

Mossberg ATR Super Bantam

deer rifles under $500

Mossberg's ATR Super Bantam .243 bolt-action rifle is a great choice for youth or small-framed hunters. At $498, you get a fairly lightweight rifle at 7.5 pounds, and plenty of features, including a durable synthetic stock, a recoil pad, and integrated sling swivel studs for easy carrying. While it's a popular option for hunters of smaller stature, it also catches the eyes of plenty of fully grown adults who want something smaller they can carry while maneuvering through thick woodlots or clear cut undergrowth as it trims down excessive barrel length that seems to just get in the way.

The ATR is built with a free-floating barrel capped by a recessed muzzle crown and is only 20 inches long overall. This lightweight rifle is also designed with long-range accuracy in mind and sports a 1:10 rate of twist.

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READ MORE: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE PLANNING A COLORADO ELK HUNT

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