For anyone who has ever seen one, the sight of a magnificent moose is breathtaking. I saw my first moose as a young boy who wondered away from everyone else in Yosemite -- and it is an impressions that still burns in my mind. People often ask, where can I go for the best chance of seeing a moose? This page should answer the question...
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In Maine, scenic Rangeley in the western mountains has long been known for its fishing. But moose-watching is growing as an ecotourism favorite. Moose love the forests and fresh waters surrounding the town. A stretch of Route 16 is known as Moose Alley , and the folks at Saddleback Mountain, a popular ski resort, offer twice-weekly free moose-watching tours through August. --Mel Allen
For a list of other good spots in Maine, see the Maine Travel website Moose Watching in Maine.
The remote Allagash region of Maine offers a near guarantee to see Moose in its Moose Calling and Fall Foliage Tours. These tours (which are fairly expensive) are only available during the last two weeks of September and the first week of October. Loon Lodge
A great Moose and Photo safari can be done in Millinocket, in the Katahdin Region of Maine. The Moose and Photo safaris is for those who want to see and photograph moose and wildlife up close (and even includes a money back guarantee). Millinocket, The Katahdin Region and Baxter State Park are best described as "MOOSE COUNTRY". See Moose and Photo Safaris for details.
Northern New Hampshire's Moose Alley is on the short list for dependable roadside moose-spotting. Dawn and dusk are optimal times to make the slow drive on forested Route 3 from the state's northernmost town, Pittsburg, to the Canadian border by the Connecticut River headwaters as moose come out of the woods in search of salt licks. -- Marty Basch
Other good routes in New Hampshire where moose are often seen, especially from May through October, include:
- Route 3 north of Pittsburg to the Canadian border; - Route 16 north of Milan to the Maine Border; - Route 26 east of Dixville Notch to the Maine Border; - Route 112 from Lincoln east to the Bear Notch Road; - Route 110 north of Berlin to Rte 110A.
I suggest traveling these roads at dusk, looking for roadside salt licks where moose come out of the woods to feed on road salt that has washed off the roads and accumulated in wet areas. Good areas for moose viewing will usually have multiple cars filled with camera-toting folks hoping for a moose!
Yellowstone National Park
In Yellowstone National Park, look for moose among the willows in Willow Park, just south of Mammoth Hot Springs. Another good area is just south of Canyon and the Lake area. On occassion they can be seen in the Madison and Firehole rivers. The east side of Lamar Valley is another good spot.
There are plenty of moose in Yellowstone National Park, but they are not always easy to find. Over 800 moose reside in the park. Look for them in Hayden Valley, between Fishing Bridge and Canyon. Also try the area near Mammoth Hot Springs. In my last trip there, I looked hard, but couldn't find any. -- William S. Howard
Try looking in creek bottoms and other boggy areas of Yellowstone. Moose have long legs and they are well adapted to feeding in swamps. They love willow. A moose is especially likely to appear in a creek bottom that has a great deal of willow in it. One good bet is always the well-named Willow Park, an area on the road from Mammoth Hot Springs to Norris Geyser Basin, eleven miles from Mammoth as you head south (from Norris, the distance is nearly the same). Here, willow grows across a wide area. Moose will appear regularly.
In Colorado, moose are most often found in North Park, near Walden, which bills itself as the "Moose Viewing Capital of Colorado." A couple hours north of Denver, the likelihood of seeing a moose is higher here than just about anyplace else in the Colorado (although not as good as the prime Canadian and Maine spots). See State Forest State Park. They even have a moose-themed ranger station, to suggest places to go to spot moose.
An important note is NOT to go during hunting season. I stopped by here in late October and saw nothing. After talking to the park rangers, I realized, belatedly, that spotting a moose at the end of hunting season was extremely unlikely, as any of the less timid moose would have been shot. Hunting season is in the fall, beginning in September. Thus, in order to spot Moose, the best times to see them would be spring and summer. ~ William
Another location that sometimes works in Colorado is Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado, Moose frequent willow thickets along the Colorado River in the Kawuneeche Valley on the park's west side. Again, however, I tried to find moose here in November without any luck. According to the park rangers, they see moose in this area only infrequently, perhaps once or twice a month. Thus, this spot can be considered hit-at-miss. ~ William
Isle Royale, Michigan
The classic North Woods forest that covers most of Isle Royale National Park in Michigan is home to steadily growing wolf and moose populations. It is such a perfect internet site! Nonetheless, is it real to find some term papers writing helper here? I am willing to buy college research paper! Please give me your suggestions! Both animals were only recently reintroduced to Isle Royale, an isolated island in the northwest corner of Lake Superior. You're more likely to hear wolves than see them, but their splendid howl will serenade you if you spend a night in the backcountry.
The popular Greenstone Ridge Trail runs for 40 miles along the spine of the islands and affords spectacular views as well as moose sightings. Watch for moose wading, sipping, and nibbling in the water as you follow the trail through dense woods, past bogs, and up high peaks with panoramic views. Hikers on the 13-mile Rock Harbor Trail may encounter moose swimming up to the Moskey Basin dock. Anyone spending a night in the park is bound to hear the howl of wolves and loons throughout the night.
Isle Royale is different than most national parks in that it requires real planning and preparation to visit. The park, actually an archipelago of 200 islands, is quite remote. Just getting to one of its three ports of departure — Houghton, Michigan, Copper Harbor, Michigan, or Grand Harbor, Minnesota — requires some planning. Once visitors arrive in their chosen port town, they take a passenger ferry or a seaplane (from Houghton only) to the narrow, 45-mile-long island.
Algonquin Forrest Park -- In Ontario, just north of Toronto, some believe that Algonquin's forest lands offer the best moose watching opportunities in North America. Moose emerge from the woods in late Spring to find salt along the park's main road. Drive carefully. A Mooseworld user notes: "In the spring the moose mama's and calves and the odd bull come down to the roadside and ditches. They come for the much needed salt in their diets.In the winter the park rangers salt the road and in the spring the moose come down for the runoff. They are quite used to the people taking the pictures. In the spring of 1995 on our honeymoon we saw maybe as may as ten a day in the park." Mooseworld
Pointe-Taillon Provincial Park in Quebec -- A Mooseworld correspondent writes that "a great place to observe moose in Canada is a small provincial park in Quebec called Pointe-Taillon. It has one of the highest density of moose in Quebec and chances of a sighting are significant. There is a long hiking/cycling path throughout the park which is in prime moose habitat." Mooseworld
Also in Quebec, the largest member of the deer family in Québec is everywhere in Réserve faunique de Matane. Over 4,000 moose share 1,275 km2, an incredible population density! Moose watchers agree that this reserve is a mecca in Québec. A moose interpretation centre and a wide range of observation and interpretive activities are available for those who want to learn more about this animal. There are also a number of mountain peaks close to 1,000 metres high. Hikers, anglers and hunters can admire breathtaking views from atop these vantage points. See Réserve faunique de Matane.
Anchorage, Alaska and Denali National Park
Hundreds of Moose are easily found within the Anchorage city limits, especially during the winter when city yards and greenbelts offer better forage than can be found on the snowcovered mountain slopes. Moose are also safer in the city from grizzly bears, though an occasional grizzly bear has been known to wander into town, too. Moose may be encountered almost anywhere, at any time, but the best time to look for moose in their favored urban haunts such as Kincaid Park or Campbell Airstrip Road in Anchorage is around dusk. Other good places to watch for moose, especially in the winter, include the Palmer hay flats and the meadows near Portage.
Visitors to Alaska are more likely to see moose than any other big game. They may be seen from the highway on a drive between Anchorage and Seward or Anchorage and Denali National Park. Moose are among the wildlife attractions at Denali National Park, though they are not as common a sight there as are caribou.
Do not look for moose in Juneau. As a former Juneau resident, I can tell you that there are no moose in-or-around Juneau. ~ Jackie