Friday, August 19, 2011

Moose @ Denali National Park

While comfortably sitting inside the Green Bus of Denali National Park, I was whining deep inside what a disappointment it was at Wonder Lake because swarm of mosquitoes feasted on us :( while the mountains played hide and seek, covered with very thick clouds. 

Instead of focusing on the negative feelings of regretting the trip to Wonder Lake, I shifted to being thankful for what a beautiful day had it been!! I thanked the Lord for allowing us to see grizzly bears, caribou, moose, golden eagle, dall sheep, among others safely. Denali National Park has very rich wildlife, it was for that reason that the National Park was established, to protect the mammals that inhabit the place. But the vast and inspiring landscape of Denali, and the presence of Mt. McKinley, the tallest mountain in North America at 20,320 ft inspired so many who were able to experience the beauty of this immense place.     
Moose Swimming in the Pond and the Denali Mountains
(this is how far we were from the moose)
Now, on our way back to Eielson Visitor Center, I was looking far afar towards the mountains wishing the clouds to be lifted up, so I can at least see Mt. McKinley. Then, I shifted the direction of my eyesight to the many glacier-carved ponds of the tundra. I saw a huge brown ball kind of floating on the water. Pointing to that brown ball floating on the water, I shouted to the bus driver, "STOP! There's an animal down the water..a bear?..." And then, the moose head popped up, and those who were looking at where I was pointing, shouted, "MOOSE!!!" :)
Moose, Enjoying a Swim
And our very kind and friendly Green bus driver teased me while shaking his head: "Bear, huh?  How on Earth were you able to spot that moose far?" But I just gave him a smile back and just like everybody else in the bus, got busy with our camera following the moose. 
Moose, Why Are You Staring at the Ducks?
Thankfully, Moose is Vegetarian, he just wanted to challenge the ducks swimming
 Moose are excellent swimmers. They are not very social animals, and oftentimes find alone. They are the largest members of the deer family. Adult males can weigh 900-1400 pounds. Moose use their long legs to wade into bodies of water and eat plants off the bottom.
Sleepy Eyes?
While we were busy following the moose swim, someone from the group inside the bus shouted with excitement: "The clouds were moving higher, Mt. McKinley can now be seen, take picture! take picture! Before it disappears again!"
Moose Swimming on a Glacial Carved Pond and Denali Mountains
Thankfully, the clouds did not go down low so fast to hide Mt. McKinley! I may not have Mt. McKinley at Wonder Lake, but finally, happy to see part of its face. I'll share more about Mt. McKinley and Denali's immense landscape in a later post. 
Mt. McKinley in Partial Clouds
 On our way outside of the park, we saw this bull moose. We were really that close, and I did not have to use a zoom lens for this one, I only used 100mm focal length for this shot. Thankfully, we were inside the bus and safe, since the bull moose can be very aggressive when disturbed.

Though we may not have the best weather in Denali, but the moose sure went out to play with us :)
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  1. Take pictures, take pictures.

    Wow, I can feel the heat, and the excitement.

  2. These are wonderful pictures of the moose in the water. He looks like he's having a good time cooling off.

  3. how lucky you are! The moose is so cute, such a lovely encounter:-))

  4. Love the pictures, especially of the moose! That's one thing I don't think I'd see when I hike Sedona. The moose seemed to be so refreshed afterwards. LOL. Thanks for sharing.

  5. You did see many wonderful things, and the moose in the photos are fantastic Betchai.

  6. wow... what an awesome sightings. This is adventure at its finest. Very exciting. Hubby and I saw a couple at the dirt road on our way to the mountain last weekend when we went camping. Too bad I didn't have my camera on my hand. When I finally had it, they were down the river already and too dark for me to see them.

  7. I love moose!!! I have always wanted to see one in person.

  8. It's always good to be thankful! Wow! I've never seen a moose before in real life! : )

  9. Betchai, I love that Mt. McKinley shot. It is just gorgeous. It is really cool to see a moose swimming up close and persona. Love this post.

  10. Love moose- they are shy of cameras- great captures.

  11. What amazing pictures! How did you know it was a moose from that great distance? Your luck changed once you started to change your outlook.

  12. Hi there Moose! thank you for entertaining us...You prayers must have been heard so the clouds moved higher allowing you to take a photo of the mountain:-) love your line on thanking God for the beautiful day instead of focusing on the negative feelings...indeed each second we spend breathing is a time to rejoice...:-)

  13. Fantastic sighting of the moose, Betchai! And it must have been so exciting when the clouds lifted to show Mt. McKinley!

  14. I like the moose in the water. Nature walks can be so rewarding. I don't do this enough.


  15. India has so many National Parks, some one told me Bandhavgarh is best for tigers sighting. I want to stay for 15 days for photography, so searching best national park and best hotel there.