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PostPosted: Sat Oct 03, 2009 7:59 am • # 1 
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First let me say, I wander the woods unafraid. Grizzlies and other bears don't scare me none. The howl of a wolf is haunting, but don't scare me none. But Moose are different. While I'm not totally afraid of Moose, I do have a 'personal space' preference when it comes to close encounters. I really prefer they stay far enough away, I can't smell their breath.

Before 1999, I was unafraid of moose too. I wandered the woods in pleasant peace...unafraid. That fateful day that changed things for me started out like any other duck hunt in Idaho (in Idaho, duck habitat and moose habitat coincide), and I was unafraid. Shortly after lunch, I had an encounter with a moose. Not an angry moose, which would have been preferable if I were to have an encounter with a moose, but a lovable moose. No moose is worse to have an encounter with than a lovable moose! It all started innocent enough; a bluebird, duckless afternoon, a blind a malfunctioning shotgun ( the new Beretta had been giving me grief all morning), a blind, and a couple dozen decoys....then it included a moose. It included the moose all of a sudden like. Why can't moose give some warning. You'd think a 1200 lb animal would give some warning of it's approach, but not this one, a stealthy moose it was! Anyway, when the moose came for me, I was unaware until the moose was really close, approx. a couple moose nose lengths away. That's too close with a moose. I burst out of my duck blind like a pheasant. My Father in Law 100 yards away, looked up to see what all the 'cackling' was about. I landed about 10 yards off, just shy of my first decoys. I might have landed farther away but was laden with waders, hunting coat and malfunctioning shotgun. 10 yards is OK for me when it comes to moose but after 'touching down', I began to sink in the mud putting me in an undesirable position where I must stand my to speak. That is when I noticed the moose was not angry.

If you've ever been around a bull moose when the rut is on, you know what sound it makes when looking for love. No sound in the woods is as horrific as that of a rutting bull moose. Wolves have nothing on them. Yeti's, phantom demons and werewolves pale in comparison. It's hard to record the sound with a typewriter but Uuurrraahhhph! is close.

Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph went the moose as he strutted my way looking for something to love. I'm not sure how a moose could confuse a terrified duck hunter, clad in camo and waders for something lovable, but he was clearly confused. I'm somewhat overweight but not nearly so big as a cow moose. That's when I learned I could cry like a little girl. A blast from my shotgun which I put across his Bow (or whatever you'd call it on a moose) brought the moose up short 10 feet away. The moose stopped but looked confused. I now know what a confused moose looks like. I unjammed the Beretta for an other shot if needed and I needed it. After I found the shot across the Bow didn't deter my incoming enemy, I put a shot at it's feet...that was the mistake which led to the close encounter and I thought it was close before. It brought the moose within breathing distance in a second flat. Until that point, the moose gave every indication it was a lover, not a fighter and when it learned I could not be seduced, it came at me with Rape in it's eyes. That's when I learned I could not only cry like a little girl, but I could scream too. Also, at that moment, I learned that my uncaring Father in Law could laugh like a hyena.

"He likes you Dave" he chortled.

I'm not sure what stopped the moose from having his way with me. Divine intervention for certain, as my life would have never been the same again. The moose stopped his charge just feet away from my trembling form, stuck in the mud, and turned and went looking for love elsewhere. Which brings us to yesterday.

I spent the Day at Henry's Lake. Last weekend, I caught a 6 lb Cutt/Bow and was hoping to better the record. I went with a friend from work (whom we will call Mike). We unloaded the pontoons on the shore and was busy with getting things ready when ........."Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph"

The color fell from my face! Not 10 yards was this:


I am proud of my self control for I was able to hold the camera pretty still and my hands only shook mildly.

The Moose turned into the woods, broadside at about 5 yards and continued...... "Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph"


Unlike duck hunters, fly fishermen can never be mistaken for cow moose but a 6wt fly rod has even less defensive properties than a malfunctioning Beretta. Then I heard something behind me, "Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph"

"What the bleep?" "Mike, what are you doing?" "Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph" went Mike.

"Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph" went the young bull moose.

"Shut up!" went me.

"I had a bad experience once with a moose"

"What happened?" went Mike.

"Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph" went the moose now getting within breathing distance.

"Wwwhhaaaa" went me, practicing my little girl crying just in case.

"Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph" went the moose again.

"Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph" went the moose, now getting that confused look on it's face.

"Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph" went Mike again, with a laugh mixed in. Clearly he had never had an encounter with a lovable moose before.

"Shut you mouth!" I demanded.

"Uuurrraahhhph, Uuurrraahhhph, ...why?....Uuurrraahhhph"

"I told you I had a bad experience once"

It all ended well. The moose went looking for love elsewhere. The fishing was great, though no fish bigger than 21 inches but that is good too.

PostPosted: Sat Oct 03, 2009 9:09 am • # 2 
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Joined: 11/18/08
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Great story Dave! We're all glad you survived your second encounter as well as the first! :-)

PostPosted: Sat Oct 03, 2009 9:14 am • # 3 
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That was so funny...I laughed till I cried...tho I would not have been laughing if it had happened to me...Thanks for sharing...

PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:39 pm • # 4 
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Joined: 07/03/09
Posts: 250
I'm still laughing. Thanks.

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