Gunflint Trail Neighbors Save Moose From Icy Lake

Moose rescue photos courtesy Bob McCloughan, Bearskin Lodge
Moose rescue photos courtesy Bob McCloughan, Bearskin Lodge

A young female moose can thank a group of volunteer firefighters and locals for saving it from the frigid waters of Hungry Jack Lake on Monday. Hungry Jack is located just outside the Boundary Waters on the Gunflint Trail.

The Gunflint Trail Volunteer Fire Department used canoes and ropes to haul the animal animal onto solid footing after it fell through the ice.

According to Bearskin Lodge, neighbors Barb and John Bottger first saw the moose in the water from their cabin window. They called for help, and the crew responded.

“The moose was calm enough that they could wrap straps around her neck,” Bearskin reported on its blog. “With a great deal of dragging, they got the moose’s feet up on the ice. Bob and Jim anchored themselves on the ice with an ice ax (Dave was smart enough to wear Yak Trax), so the three of them could start the long process of pulling and sliding the moose out of the hole.”

Moose on the ice.
Moose on the ice. Photos courtesy Bob McCloughan, Bearskin Lodge

The creature was very cold and possibly hypothermic, and seemed shocked and reluctant to leave the lake. After the group pulled her out the first time, she broke through the ice two more times, with rescuers pulling her out once, and waiting for her to walk to shore through shallow water and thin ice the final time. The animal eventually wandered into the woods after much coaxing. Rescuers believe it survived.

The story quickly became very popular on social media, and was covered widely by the press.

The moose fell through the ice once more as it got close to shore. Photos courtesy Bob McCloughan, Bearskin Lodge
The moose fell through the ice once more as it got close to shore. Photos courtesy Bob McCloughan, Bearskin Lodge

 

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