The day we arrived it was raining, and we woke up the next morning to pouring down rain. We made great use of our day reading and heading into ‘town’ for lunch and some errands.
The next day turned out to be not quite as bad. While overcast, there seemed to be very little rain. So we decided to venture into the woods of Maine for some Moose watching. While I’ve seen a few in my day, it’s been a while and Brian has never seen one. So on some advice from the locals we headed up a stretch of road that took us north toward Moosehead Lake.
When we arrived at the final destination, not a moose in sight, we headed to fill up on gas. We asked the attendant if he had any suggestions, and he mentioned another town about 30 minutes north of there. So off we went. Driving slowly, and scouring the woods on the side of the road attempting to spot anything that moved. We finally arrived in Kadojha, ME with still no sightings. A bit disappointed we decided not to waste any more time and turned around.
At this point I was getting a bit sleepy (cars never fail to put me to sleep almost immediately- in fact, it’s pretty impressive I had stayed awake as long as I had at that point), so I nodded off while Brian drove us back to a hike we had picked out. About 5 minutes later I got woken up to an excited pat on my leg- straight ahead on the right side of the road was a moose! We began driving super slow right up to her, and I started taking pictures through the woods. We realized there was a side street there so we turned, and there she was coming out of a clearing. Swear to god no more than 10 feet from our car. She had to see us but didn’t seem to mind, so I kept snapping away. I opened the window to remove the glare from the pictures, and right from the back of the car Murph spotted her.
As you can imagine, he didn’t keep his mouth shut. So then Dakota started looking and spots the giant Moose. Seeing as Dakota’s pretty sensitive to other dogs, you can imagine how he responded to this giant, giant animal standing right next to the car. And I thought we were dead. The moose looks up, straight at us, and starts walking. At this point I put the camera down and started urging loudly for us to go in reverse, away from the moose. Moose are known to charge when afraid, and this one could have taken my whole car. As we started going in reverse, the moose just kept on walking across the road into the woods again. What a successful moose sighting!
- And the moose notices the dogs…
MOOSE SIGHTING: 8. I’m taking off two points, 1 for the fact that it was a female and we would loved to have seen one with a full rack, and 1 for the fear factor that comes along with being so close to such a powerful animal. But overall it was incredible!
HIKE UP THE MOUNTAIN: 7
I’m definitely the type of hiker that enjoys working for something. While the hike up was definitely not comfortable, and involved a lot of leg pain, pants sticking to my legs, and some decent mud, it’s great knowing what you get at the top. The dogs were awesome, and Murphy practically ran to the top with Brian while Dakota took it slow and steady in the back. It was a steady climb that got steeper towards the end, and took us about 2 hours. It was great to see Dakota in his element- no leash needed as he stuck right by me, and no worries about other dogs since there was only one other car parked at the trailhead. He loved it 🙂
VIEW FROM THE TOP: 6
We stopped at a ‘scenic overlook’ about 30 minutes from the top and got a pretty decent view. Despite the cloudy day you could still see a lot of the surrounding area, and the clouds were actually pretty cool because we were above them at that point, so it felt like we were on top of the world.
When we got to the actual summit, however, the view wasn’t quite as good. Still beautiful, what you could see, but there were more clouds and you couldn’t see off one entire side. Nonetheless, the Maine air was brilliant.
HIKE DOWN THE MOUNTAIN: 3
Ever since I was a child and we hiked Borestone Mt. every year I’ve always debated with myself which is worse, the hike up or the hike down. I think Moose Mt. may have helped me decide. And I think it all goes back to needing to have a reward at the end. And while hitting the car and taking off my shoes was a reward of sorts, it’s not quite the same as reaching the top. The rocks were all pretty slippery from the recent rain, and it didn’t bother me nearly as much going up, but the way down I became such a worry wart. I took it real slow as my shoes didn’t have great traction and I was super worried about twisting an ankle. Or breaking a leg and getting a compound fracture and no one would be there to help, and then I’d start panicking and die. Okay, that’s just the worry wart side of me, but it definitely made the hike down slightly less enjoyable. However my dogs were adorable and stuck right with me. Murph in front, Dakota in the back. It’s like they could tell I was nervous, and it did make me feel better 🙂