I've already screamed on our Alpine Coaster, whizzed within centimeters of a marmot on the Alpine Slide, and taken my lumps on some of the great bike trails here at the Resort. But entering my sixth week with the team, I'd only heard stories of the moose that were said to be hanging out higher up the mountain - and after suffering through four years of college in Maine with a 0% moose-spotting rate, I figured Park City Mountain Resort's moose would be my own white whale.
But then yesterday happened.
Enjoying a mid-day hike with some of my Resort team colleagues, we popped out from under the tree cover of John's Trail and wound our way down Payday. As we paused to take in the vista, an alert member of our group caught a bull moose loping through the terrain between King's Crown and the Town Lift!
Psyched with our fortunate spotting, and after requisite picture-taking and social media-sharing, we continued down Payday, convinced the animal had continued well past our position. A rustling in some nearby trees, however, alerted us we were not alone, and suddenly I was creeping towards the noise like an expert tracker to find we had actually been descending straight towards him! (hiding behind the tree trunk, there)
As the rest of the crew shed layers and re-applied sunblock, I took the opportunity to carefully creep even closer - rudely interrupting his enjoyment of a lunch that included leaves and tree bark.
Finally, wisely, I decided I didn't want to learn the hard way how close was too close to get to a moose who's trying to enjoy a meal in peace. I left him alone, and we made our way down to the Resort Base, buzzing the whole way about our close encounter. Maybe it's another four years before I run back into my new moose friend on the mountain - but at least I snapped a couple decent pics to tide me over 'til then. And if you do any hiking on the mountain this summer, keep an eye out for him yourself!
Originally from the Pocono’s of Pennsylvania, Travis found his way to Park City three years ago and is now our grooming manager. When not in snowcat you can find him skiing or snowmobiling in the Utah backcountry or enjoying the skiing here at Park City Mountain Resort.
Nicole Roundy is a world class snowboarder on the US Paralympic Team. She is a cancer survivor, inspiration seeker, crossfit training, Park City riding superpower blogger. Follow her adventures right here. You can also spy her on twitter (@nicoleroundy) and Instragram (@nroundy)