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Why Are Berger Bullets So Popular?

Berger Bullets are some of the most popular bullets on the market, and for good reason. Most of them have a copper jacket and a lead core, which makes them incredibly accurate and deadly effective.

Additionally, the company has a long history of producing high-quality bullets that perform well in a variety of conditions. The tale behind the hunting bullet is a perfect example of why they are so popular.


The initial goal of the VLD bullet design was to build one that would perform better than the 30 cal 168 gr SMK in windy conditions. This goal was born out of a request from the US 300-meter shooting team, who wanted a bullet that would resolve recoil fatigue., which meant producing a bullet that would maintain a similar or a better trajectory.

Berger delivered, and the bullet quickly became a huge success. Not only did it have a far better trajectory, but it also produced significantly less recoil. This was initially a big selling point for the bullet, and it remains one of the most popular features to this day.

The Turning Point

As the Berger team behind the productions revealed, they were initially against the idea of hunting game with ‘Match’ bullets. Sierra Bullets, another renowned manufacturer, relayed a message discouraging hunters from that bullet type.

However, as the Berger’s was a match-grade bullet, they took to the same position. This slowly changed when word started to roll out about the concept. Shooters who were more interested in flatter trajectories and reduced wind drift began making their orders, and the news soon spread rapidly.

What is more interesting, is that in the years that followed, they received reports from multiple user hunters, who claimed the Berger bullet would successfully drop games of almost any size. Initially, they dismissed these claims and stuck to their earlier advice, telling the hunters that they don’t recommend they use the bullets for that purpose.

This changed when they started to get more and more reports of successful hunts with their invention.

Putting the Challenge to the Test

Prior to this, the team had done some limited hunting testing with the VLD, but it was never anything extensive. Ideally, they wanted to test the bullet on game animals of all sizes, in a variety of different scenarios.

This would give them a much better understanding of how the bullet performed when hunting, and whether it was truly as effective as people were claiming. Although they were initially unsuccessful in meeting both goals (ability to retain a minimum of 80% of its weight, and ¼ MOA in an equivalent rifle) their outlook changed with the results of other hunters.

Reportedly, John Burns of The Best of the West TV show in 2005 showed them a video of successful hunts, which impressed Walt (Berger’) so much that they decided to put the bullet to the test.

As they recount, the subsequent year was followed by more tests with increased media coverage. The most impressive aspect of the bullet’s performance was the way it penetrated. It tore through the tissue and bone, quickly fragmenting, and sent an insane amount of hydrostatic shock reverberating into the tissues of the vital organs.

Interestingly, the aftermath of internal damage left by the bullets by Berger was by far the biggest seen by the other experienced hunters invited to these tests. It quickly dawned on them that they had indeed birthed what would be among the most lethal bullets on the market.

However, the initial bullets were not without their flaws and would heat up to the point of the cores actually melting. They found a way to resolve this by making the jacket thicker. And as it turns out, the thicker jacket not only solved the problem of the cores melting, but it also had the added benefit of making them more stable in flight.

The Final Take-Away

The inception story of the Berger VLD is an interesting one, and it’s easy to see why the bullet has become so popular among hunters. Not only does it have a great trajectory, but it also leaves a tremendous amount of internal damage, making it among the top lethal hunting bullets available.

Overall, the Berger bullet is a great choice for hunters who are looking for a high-quality bullet that will get the job done quickly and efficiently.

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