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Alaskan Moose & Caribou

Alaskan Moose

The most commonly seen big game animal in Alaska is the moose. These large, ungainly looking beasts are often seen in Anchorage and nearly everywhere along the road system. The Kenai Peninsula has some of the best moose habitat in the world, and the observant traveler can usually spot some of these big deer, especially in the mornings and evenings when they are most active. Good moose-watching areas near Fairbanks are along Chena Hot Springs Road just outside of town and Donnelly Dome just south of town.

One of the most enduring images of Alaska wildlife featured by nature photographers is huge herds of barren ground caribou streaming over the tundra. Unfortunately for the casual wildlife watcher these herds of animals, numbering in the hundreds of thousands, migrate over areas far removed from the road system. However, even if your travels are confined to less remote areas, you can still spot caribou if you're observant and lucky. Here again, the best chance for seeing them is at Denali National Park. Large herds are rare, but there's always an excellent chance of a good close-up view from one of the park shuttles. Other good places include the Dalton and Denali highways-pull off the road whenever you've got an unobstructed view of a large parcel of open ground and scan methodically with your binoculars. Look for shapes and colors that don't exactly match the local vegetation, and zero in on any moving objects. Bears and wolves, caribou and moose, foxes and golden eagles and many species of birds all make their homes on the tundra, and the patient and the observant traveler will be rewarded with glimpses into their lives.


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