June 13th: My first moose encounter

I'm just rolling back to the cabin after a long bicycle ride, and my heart is pounding. As I come up the driveway to the cabin, Squirrel is sitting on the railing waiting for me.

"Squirrel, wow, am I glad to see you. I just saw a moose out there, and it was huge! It was standing in the road between me and the town, and every time I tried to get past it, it would take one or two steps, and be in my way again. I didn't know if it was going to let me come back home!"

"Yes, they are big, aren't they", Squirrel said. "Was it a momma moose?"

"I don't know, I didn't ask. I did say some things like 'Sit', and 'Shoo', but that didn't work at all!"

"Wow. How did you get back home?"

"Well, I just backed up and gave it a lot of room. Eventually it walked off into the forest on the side of the road. But until then it was just me and the moose out there. I kept waiting for someone to come down the road and help me, but nobody came."

"No, there isn't much traffic around here, which is kind of nice. But you did the right thing. You should give moose plenty of room, especially if its a momma moose and she has a calf nearby. They can be very aggressive then, and they can really hurt you."

"What should I do if one ever attacks me?"

"Unlike bears, it's okay to run away from a moose. They're vegetarians, so they don't want to eat you, they just want to scare you away. If for some reason you can't run away, you can also try to get behind a tree, and then keep the tree between you and the moose. They're big, but they don't move really quick, so in an emergency, that might work, too."

"Thanks, that's good to know. I'll remember that in case I ever see another one."

"Oh, if you stay in Alaska very long you'll see a lot of moose. You get used to them after a while", Squirrel said.