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Close Encounters of the Moose Kind


Aaron Zagrodnick
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Aaron Zagrodnick

Although not quite as exciting as TollerMom's recent wildlife sighting, 2 days ago I headed out to explore some offtrail / unmarked routes through a local drainage in the southern Winds and about 30 minutes into the trip, I ran into this unhappy forest inhabitant:

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Most moose sightings I've had on the trail fit the typical serene circumstance that might at first come to mind - A solitary moose in a meadow happily munching away beside a stream or a mother moose and calf staring back at you inquisitively from the forest. That was not the case here. The moose ran back and forth across the trail in front of me at close range, and at one point in my direction... Hooves thundering as it ran through the tangled forest like it was an open field. It then lowered its head and just glared in my direction off to one side of the trail and I was able to leave the area. I hiked the rest of the day, but as an out and back I'd return to the same place later than evening. Luckily, the return trip was less eventful, with no additional moose encounters to report. :D

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Well they can be as exciting as any other wildlife. My wife was eye to eye with a cow moose about five years ago, within a couple 100 yards of the house. She routinely uses the ATV and trailer to cut firewood and was heading up the small drainage behind the house. Came around a blind curve and the cow was headed for her at full speed. We had a piece of 1/2" plywood on the front luggage rack and a steel milk crate on top of that with all the chainsaw related stuff in it. The cow put both feet up and slammed the front of the ATV with one hoof planted in the side of the milk crate and the other hitting the outside of the plywood-which broke off. The impact drove the whole outfit back and jackknifed the trailer and my wife got a bit of whiplash out of it.

The breaking of the plywood put the cow off balance to the right side of the ATV (and also the side of the now jackknifed trailer) and she just jumped over the trailer and kept going. My wife is still having occasional moose dreams. Exciting indeed.

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  • 4 months later...

Here is one of our sightings from two seasons ago. This moose came through our camp twice a day including kicking one of the lines to my tent while I was lying inside.

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