One Bullet Does it All: Berger 156 Grain 6.5mm EOL

I’ve done more testing and field work with Berger’s 6.5mm 156 grain Extreme Outer Limits (EOL) Elite Hunter rifle bullet than any other rifle bullet. Today, I’m revisiting those experiences.

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About the 6.5mm 156 Grain Extreme Outer LImits (EOL) Elite Hunter Bullet

At 156 grains, this bullet comes in at the far end of the weight class for 6.5mm bullets.

It also has a G7 BC of 0.347 and requires a 1:8 twist — the same twist rate all my 6.5 Creedmoor and 6.5 PRC rifles have. I’ve used this bullet in three different cartridges as well as in factory ammunition. 

From Berger Bullets

The long-awaited 6.5mm 156gr EOL Elite Hunter Rifle Bullets are purpose-built for hunters demanding a heavy-Rifle Bullet solution for their Creedmoor, PRC, 26 Nosler and other 6.5 caliber long-range hunting platforms. EOL Elite Hunter Rifle Bullets are “heaviest-in-class” and designed to break the common trend-line for today’s heavy hunting offerings. The sleek profile features an ultra-high ballistic coefficient (B.C.) and increased sectional density, delivering the highest energy retention upon impact.

EOL Elite Hunter Rifle Bullets utilize Berger’s industry-leading hybrid ogive design, which blends tangent and secant designs to optimize efficiency, reduce wind-drift, and minimize sensitivity to seating depth. EOL’s are easy to load and shoot, and provide the unmatched accuracy and performance that long-range enthusiasts expect from Berger Rifle Bullets.”

Hunting South Africa with 6.5 Sherman Short

This past summer I had the opportunity to travel to South Africa and hunt with my friend Piet Malan from Impact Shooting.

It was an incredible trip and we downed seven animals with seven shots total — all using Berger’s 6.5mm 156 grain EOL Elite Hunter from Piet’s 6.5 Sherman Short.

Watch the series for all the details! All of the animals dropped within seconds from well-placed, ethical shots.

6.5 PRC Load Development

I’ve also done some load development with this bullet and N565 in my Bergara B-14 Wilderness HMR 6.5 PRC.

With 56 grains of N565 we observed 2922.2 fps average velocities, a standard deviation of 4.0 and a spread of 10. One of my five shot groups measured under a half MOA at 100 yards! 

6.5 Creedmoor Loads and Scientific Tests

When Berger first released the 156 grain 6.5mm EOL Elite Hunter bullet, I ran a battery of tests.

Average diameter was 0.2638” with an SD of 0.0001” and ES of 0.0003”. The average diameter was only 0.0002” off from the 0.264” nominal diameter for 6.5mm bullets. The average length was 1.5147”, 0.002” different from published OAL. Average weight was 156.0130 grains with a 0.0516 grain standard deviation. This is very impressive! 

I loaded the bullets over 42.5 grains of Vihtavuori N560 powder in Lapua 6.5 Creedmoor small rifle primer cases with Federal 205 primers.

This load yielded approximately 2,670 fps out of a 6.5 Creedmoor with a 0.660 MOA five-shot group. 

6.5 PRC Factory Ammunition

Berger produces both 6.5 PRC and 6.5 Creedmoor ammunition using the 6.5mm 156 grain EOL Elite Hunter bullet. I had the best results shooting the 6.5 PRC rounds with my MDT HNT26 chassis system.

I achieved an average velocity of 2,889.6 fps with an SD of 5.1 and ES of 13.

I also took the time to do some ballistics gel testing

The bullet penetrated 18” with the peak cavity diameter about 12”. The bullet expanded by 233% to 0.264” and retained 46% (71.9 grains) of its original weight. 

Berger 156 EOL Bullets Before and After Ballistics Gel Test

Conclusion

I’ve done A LOT with the Berger 6.5mm 156 grain EOL Elite Hunter bullet and have been extremely pleased with its performance. Looking forward, I’d like to try an equivalent bullet but in the 7mm diameter range — the Berger 7mm 195 grain EOL Elite Hunter bullet.

Get the Gear

Berger 6.5 mm EOL Elite Hunter 156 grain bullet at Midsouth Shooters Supply and Creedmoor Sports

Berger 6.5 Creedmoor 156 Grain EOL Elite Hunter Ammunition at Midsouth Shooters Supply and Creedmoor Sports 

Berger 6.5 PRC 156 Grain EOL Elite Hunter Ammunition at Midsouth Shooters Supply and Creedmoor Sports

Vihtavuori N565 at Midsouth Shooters Supply

Vihtavuori N560 at Midsouth Shooters Supply

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Thanks,
Gavin Gear

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