A clip of a moose chasing a skier in Vermont has gone viral on the Web, racking up more than 139,000 views on YouTube since it was uploaded in late December.
“At first it was just amazing to see a moose and then it started walking towards us and it went from amazing to scary pretty quick,” said Applegate, who lives in Massachusetts, per CBS.
“The moose started walking toward [the skier] and put his head down and charged and we couldn’t believe it, thank God he can run fast. I’ve never seen anyone in ski boots run that fast in my life so good for him he got away," Applegate continued.
According to Vermont's WCAX-TV, the quick-footed skier in question was 19-year-old Jeff Palmer of Shelburne, Vt.
“I was like ‘You got to be kidding me; this thing is coming right for me,’" Palmer told the news channel. "I looked over my shoulder, and it was closing in on me very fast. My life flashed before my eyes when I looked back."
Fortunately for Palmer, the moose soon lost interest and stopped pursuing him.
According to reports, moose have become a more common sight around ski resorts in recent years. At Sugarbush, for instance, winter sports lovers have reported seeing at least four different moose in the past few weeks.
Some believe that the moose around the Sugarbush area have been wandering into human territory due to this year's relatively heavy snowfall, which has prompted the animals to seek groomed snow.
While catching a glimpse of the majestic moose is cause for celebration for most nature lovers, experts warn that keeping a good distance from the animal is important for safety reasons.
"You want to get away from it. Give it plenty of space," Patrick Berry, Vermont's fish and wildlife commissioner, told NBC local affiliate WPTZ-TV. "It's just trying to go from point A to B."
As the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department website notes, moose do not usually pose a serious threat to humans, but "no one should ever approach [them] no matter how tolerant they appear."
Though moose are not considered an endangered species, the animal is threatened in some areas of the world, Mooseworld.com reports. And though moose once lived abundantly throughout most of the U.S. and Canada, the species has dwindled significantly due to hunting, habitat destruction and other damaging human activities.
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