Firearms some thing to consider.
Some on the boards are armchair Generals, armchair seals, armchair bushmen. Their vehoment advice is what, from World of Warcraft or Halo?
I only go hunting with a Bushmaster or AK74/AK47 or a M16 cause that is what they use in Halo
Here are some real world things to consider;
There are some considerations aside from what is popular on the forums to your situation.
1st the person, size – weight and height – experience
can they handle the long size and weight of a full grown .50cal sniper rifle or are they more comfortable with a Mini .14 or Ruger Blackhawk 10/22 or a single action bolt rifle in .22cal or .30cal?
2nd location, not all the types of ammunition is available everywhere, for example what is Popular in Texas might not be popular in Alaska or Alberta or in Quebec for that matter. Some of the standard ammo sizes in Quebec are not standard sizes in the Province right beside them in Ontario. That should be looked into for your area and is very important.
3rd what are you expecting to do with the firearm, zombies from the cities and shopping malls or a near starved and angry Moose or Grizzly
4th commonality of ammunition in your group and your extended group of friends. It might be cool to have that 45/70 but if nobody else in the area has one, or you have to special order in the ammo, then it is not that practical to have
5th Everyone should have a 22 and lots of rounds, now the controversy begins, I think a 22lr is a must, so get a 22lr pistol as well, how about air guns, a .22 air rifle or bb gun is quiet and will take down small animals, animals for meat for your table and not be heard more than 25 yrds away. BB guns come in .17 and .22 sized bb’s the extra cost and size is well worth it. Some of the Air Rifles bought at the Gun Club or Hunting and Sportsman companies are a lot higher than the standard, 480fps at Canadian Tire.
6th Type of Terrain,
Bush hunting, Open Prairie, or combination of both.
Bush basics, you are heavily or even lightly treed areas you shoot you might not score if you have the wrong cartridge. Ballistics of the cartridges are very important, does the bullet fly flat does it Hump, as in rise and then fall. How far will you be reaching out to the target. Most Bush hunting is done from 15mtrs – about 30ft to a maximum of 100mtrs.
Shooting in the Flat open country requirements are normally shooting at a greater distance. Distances vary from 50mtrs to 800mtrs. In that environment the rise of a bullet might actually be very beneficial. Now there are scores of reasons why it may be beneficial, here is just one, you sight, you shoot, the bullet travels outwards, your dog runs in front or you at about 80 yards, your firing about 400yrds away, the bullet travels over your Dog, due to its ballistic characteristics. Dog is saved, hopefully dinner is struck.
Perhaps you need to learn about Enfalade and Defalade shooting and firing positions as well.
There are some charts that give you the Ballistic Characteristics of the different calibres and cartridges. Study them, look at what you need for the type of Terrain where you are and the area of your Hunting Choices. Another thing to learn is the difference between the bullet types, are they stopping rounds or drilling rounds. A stopping round for example is a .45cal flat front or highly sloped round. It may not have the penetrating power of say a .222 round or a .357cal but that blunt force trauma will make most things bounce backwards or sideways. The .357 or .222 are more drilling rounds, very pointy, penetrate deeply or go right on through. There are many such charts and graphs on the internet and at your local gun range.
A quick example might be, sometimes the round is not a killing shot, but the Bear gets knocked over or backwards from the .45cal and you hit it again. This happens due to the fact that the round has a lot of stopping power, is flater in the front especially in home loaded rounds. The .222 or .357 calibres go right through it and the Bear just keeps on coming at you, can you make a second shot, do you have the time or the skill to do so. It does happen, it has happened and I have seen it happen. Now O Shock or Horrow, there are lots of Bear taken every year with a .22cal by very experienced hunters. Or the lowely .30cal or the 30 30 or you get the idea, you do not need to use a 45/70 to hunt everything. Or have 30 rounds in the Magazine (clip to the US folks) full auto 7.62 rounds to go hunting, Zombies or Moose or Bear. A well aimed shot wins over spraying bullets everywhere every time. You are not on the battlefield, your not in the Infantry or Armoured Division and your not facing thousands of troops, single shot, bolt action is fine and preferable.
Consider this; most Polar Bears the most aggressive and largest carnivore in North America are taken down with .303 and 30 06 cartridges. Part of that reason is that the old Enfields are still very popular in Canada, are very accurate, also fire after being dropped in mud and water, just like the Ak Series rifles. The Enfields are a very fine firearm and are quite reasonably priced, the sights are peeps sights with a combination front blade site, a great combination and very durable one that is still in use some 60-80 yrs later.