An Amazing Moose Tale Slideshow

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An Amazing Moose Tale

Wheatley Hunt Camp, Northern Ontario

Submitted by Bill Malcolm


Wayne King

Hi Everyone: I just got back from a fishing trip with Grant Bowman, Howard Walker and Ralph Phibbs at the Wheatley Hunt Camp near Port Loring in Northern Ontario and I have an amazing story to share with you.

This was a once in a lifetime experience for sure.

One day the 4 of us Grant, Howard, Ralph and I went for a ride down a dirt track known by the Wheatley Hunt camp as Iron Bridge trail.

About 10 miles or so back in the bush I saw a yearling cow moose standing off to the side of the road in the bushes.   Grant brought the truck to a quick stop and the moose was not seemingly startled at all by our presence, even though for an animal used to being alone in the silence of the wilderness, our behavior was about as predictable as a round of party bingo. She ambled out of the scrub brush and up on to the road about 50 feet in front of us where she paused looking straight at us then slowly walked toward the front of the truck.   Of course I had my camera out and was snapping shots like crazy, how cool was this.

Soon she was standing at the front of the truck and sniffing and licking the hood.   This went on for several minutes, and me wanting to get some better pictures without the reflections on the windshield glass, I slowly opened the door and cautiously exited the truck.   She looked straight at me and to my delight it didn't seem to bother her.

I began shuffling slowly up the side of the truck with camera in hand snapping away.   I inched my way up to the front of the truck where she stood just a couple of feet from me looking me straight in the eye; I was so close I could reach out and touch her.

Knowing this was a wild animal I watched her closely for any aggressive signs but she seemed calm and somewhat curious at my presence; but I was prepared to make a mad dash for that open truck door.   We stood side by side for several minutes looking at each other, a few black flies and mosquitoes were flying about her and she twitched and flicked to drive them off.   Her winter coat was falling out and she looked quite scruffy.   I thought to myself, how can this be, it was an incredible feeling.

I got a little bolder and reached my hand toward her side, she pulled back, turned and slowly and took a few steps away.   At that point I thought my amazing venture had come to an end but then she stopped, turned her head to look back at me then turned her massive body around and slowly walked back to where I was standing.

There we were again, face to face just a few feet apart.   I cautiously stepped towards her with my left hand out and the other snapping pictures all the while, now I was standing at her side, all the while the thought was running through my head, this can’t be happening, what’s going on.   Now just inches away I reached me left hand out and gently stroked her side, she seemed a little concerned but stood fast.

How incredible was this, standing in the middle of the bush in the Canadian wilderness petting a wild moose, what an incredible feeling? I petted her head, touched her ears and ran my hand down her long snout to her velvety smooth nostrils, she didn’t mind, in fact I think she was enjoying it.   This went on for several minutes then I asked Howard to come out and take a picture of me with the moose.   He got out and I walked back and handed him the camera and gave him a few operating instructions before heading back to my new found friend.

Nervous now with two people in her space she sauntered off down the road again only to pause about 50 feet away and turn around and look back at us.   After a couple of minutes she slowly made her way back to where I was standing and again she walked right up to within inches of where I stood.   I reached up and started petting her again and Howard snapped a picture of this incredible scene.

It was good that we had proof of what was happening, for to tell this story to anyone, surely everyone would think it was bull.   Howard handed me the camera and got back in the truck and I continued to pet and talk gibberish to my friend. This went on for some time, 5, maybe 10 minutes when finally I suggested to the group that they should get out and giver her a pet.

Soon she was surrounded with Grant, Howard and Ralph on one side and me on the other.   You could tell she didn’t quite like this arrangement as her head swung back and forth between us, she took a few steps back and up the road only to pause turn around and walk back between us again.   Wow can you believe this! For the next few minutes, there stood this magnificent animal surrounded by four men stroking and petting her like she was a puppy.

We decided it was time to move on and we piled back into the truck but our moose friend didn’t want us to leave; she just stood at the front of the truck and blocked our path.   Finally Grant put the truck in gear and inched ahead and reluctantly she slowly turned and started walking slowly up the road in front of us just a few feet in front of the bumper.

After about 50 feet of this she finally she veered off the road and into the bush where she stood and watched us we slowly passed and said our farewells.   We continued down the road for 5 or 10 more miles to the Iron Bridge where we turned around and headed back.

The whole time our conversation centered on what we had just experienced, trying to make sense of it; it just wasn’t natural that a wild animal would act in this manner.   We pondered: Was it someone’s pet that they had just released into the wild? Was it a lonely calf that had just been dejected by its mother having just calved in the spring? Had her mother been shot during the past hunting season and she was lonely?

I guess we’ll never know but it sure had been an amazing experience for us.

Back down the road we headed and soon approached the spot where we had last seen her standing at the roadside and much to our amazement there she stood just several hundred feet from where we had left her.

We pulled along side her again and I got out of the truck and again she walked right up to me.   Now not as leery as I had been on our previous encounter I immediately started petting her; this time so close she sniffed my neck, chest and hands.   I reached up and scratched behind her ears, she lifted her head slightly and pressed back against my hand, she was enjoying it.   I reached under her massive jowls and stroked her neck and chin and she stretched it out so I could get a better stroke.   After several minutes of her enjoying my scratching and petting I stopped for we had to go as it was getting very late.   My hands were slick with oil from her hide.   I was no longer paying attention to her so she turned and walked up to the truck window and looked in at the guys in the truck, looking for more attention, I suspect.

I jumped back in the truck and we drove off leaving our new found friend standing there in the middle of the road.

Again we pondered our new experience.   I must say that I felt sad as we drove off; I had become somewhat attached to this magnificent friendly beast.

This certainly was an experience that we will cherish for the rest of my life.

Thanks to the Wheatley Hunt Club for the use of their Hunt Camp and the opportunity of a life time.

Hope you enjoyed my story.


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