The Moose of Maine! Where you can find them!
Well it is finally that time of year when we start our pilgrimages to Maine. In other words it is SPRING! And as I start preparations for our long drive my children remind me of my Moose friends.
Now when we all think of Moose most of us think of Bullwinkle. However, Moose (while normally gentle giants) are not creatures you want to take lightly. In fact, Moose are the largest antlered animal in North America. Bull Moose can be up to 10 feet long (yes feet), 7 feet tall at the shoulder, with antlers up to 6 feet wide and come in weighing as much as 3/4 of a ton and can run up to 30 mph. Girl Moose are no slouch either. Even though they don't have antlers they can weigh up to a 1/2 a ton.
Needless to say car accidents involving moose can be very serious. Several hundred moose are killed each year when hit by cars, also several people also die each year from these accidents. When you are driving in Maine it isn't uncommon to see Moose crossing signs instead of deer crossing signs.
Now if you want to see moose while in Maine you have several options. You can sign up for a Moose watching tour. These are normally day trips and the prices vary. Personally, I have never been on one of these trips as I have had my own free moose sighting adventures.
Another option, is to go to the Gray Animal Park. This animal park is run by the State of Maine and is amazing. In addition to having a Moose enclosure they also have other animals that have been rescued. It is a great family day trip and you not only get to meet George the Moose but see bears, bald eagles, bob cats, porcupines and see the fish hatchery. The park opens in mid-April. In fact, you will probably see me and mine there in July. We go every year and have a blast. If you go don't forget the camera.
Another option for see moose (free of charge) is to go for a drive. For me, this has option has worked very well for me. I have seen a bull moose out for a stroll with his girlfriend on Main Street in Norway down by the lake. I have also encountered them in West Paris up on Stearns Hill Road walking down a dark dirt road. While researching info for this article, RT 15 from Greenville to Shirley is also another good option. Now I have never driven this route but might this summer. But any place where there is a source of water or a bog is a likely place to see this moose.
Just remember to be careful with these guys. When I had my encounters with the free range moose I was struck by how amazingly huge they were. In fact when I had my run with the moose in West Paris my Suburban almost had a new hood ornament. And he was every bit as big as the research says.
Happy and Safe Moose Watching.