If there is an unofficial animal for Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park it would have America’s largest deer. The moose is featured in and on paintings, sculpture, bumper stickers, t-shirts, hats, postcards, etc. A moose rack hangs above the four famed Antler Arches in the Jackson Town Square, each painted with the words: “Jackson Hole, Wy”.
The Antler Arches of Jackson. A few words come to mind, “tacky” and “garish” are but two.
Now finding a moose should be as easy as throwing a snowball and hitting a millionaire in Jackson. I started my search turning left at Moose Junction and heading southwest on Moose-Wilson Road (no joke). I drove down and back, no moose! I searched the ponds and creeks in the area, ideal moose habitat, no moose! I checked all the moose hotspots in the park, no moose! I searched areas outside of the park like the Gros Ventre River, no moose (but I did see my first herd of bison). Who knew that finding the world’s largest deer would prove to be so tough? I returned to the Anvil Hotel, crestfallen, that I have not seen my first moose in one of the moosest National Parks in the world.
Not a moose but the first of many bison in Grand Teton and Yellowstone.
I lit out of Jackson early because there was a storm bearing snow, soon to arrive and I wanted to make all the passes in Yellowstone so I could make it to my digs in the town of West Yellowstone, Montana. I left at 8:00 AM and stopped to fuel up. I headed north toward Grand Teton and Yellowstone, past a picnic area and this is what I saw:
And just when I wasn’t searching for a moose, I found moose! A cow with her calf.