Once-in-a-lifetime Moose Opportunity

My once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hunt moose in Utah may not have ended in my taking the biggest moose on the mountain, but it left me with a once-in-a-lifetime memory...and a moose!


Believe it or not, the very first year I put in for moose, I drew a tag. Since this permit is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I did not expect to be reaching out so soon to one of my old friends for advice on Utah moose. My old high school buddy owns property within the area where I drew my tag and I knew he would give me some pointers on where to go.


i went hunting moose Utah Shiras moose hunt
                   My son with a record book 53 inch Utah moose


It was November, my buddy's directions had put us right into moose country. My son had joined me on this particular weekend, our plan was to make a big loop to cover as much country as possible. We wanted to familiarize ourselves with the area and ultimately run into a "shooter bull".


Early Saturday morning we left camp and headed northeast toward an east-west running ridge that fingered off the main mountain, which ran north to south. The sky was clear which made for a bitterly cold start. However, this freezing weather led to one of the most amazing sights of the hunt!


Actually, that amazing sight started with an unusual and perplexing sound. We were just about to top a small rise when we heard loud booming sound that repeated a few times.  We looked at each other, puzzled by the sound that neither of us could identify. The sound seemed to originate from the basin ahead. We quickly made our way to the top of the knoll and peered down the other side. There stood two moose at the edge of a frozen pond. We threw up our binoculars and much to our amazement the moose were making the noise. We watched as the moose stomped at the frozen pond as they attempted to break the ice. The echo of their front hooves slamming onto the frozen ice was the origin of the unbelievably loud thunderous sound. Once the ice did break, the moose waded into the icy water right up to their chest and started to drink. Luckily for them, neither was a "shooter bull", but luckily for us, we were seeing moose right off the get-go.


Shiras moose hunt Utah
                      Double rainbow on the 2nd day
Packing out bull moose
                   Packing out our bull moose


That first day we saw a total of twenty nine moose, seventeen of them being bulls. I guess it's possible that we saw some of the same moose more than once, but not likely since our horseshoe shaped route took us along ridgelines. And from there we spotted most of the moose down off the sides in the valleys below.


Utah Shiras moose hunt Morgan Utah
                          My moose, great time!


We didn't end up shooting a bull that first weekend and I didn't end up shooting the biggest bull I saw during the hunt, but as the season wound down I took my "shooter bull" on the last day of my hunt!