Man Riding Snowmobile Shoots Moose With Sidearm, Did He Need To?

Man Riding Snowmobile Shoots Moose With Sidearm, Did He Need To? [VIDEO]


A snowmobiler makes a quick decision with a feisty young bull moose, but did he make the right call?

That’s the question we asked ourselves when we first say this video – why did this man have to shoot the moose?

If you’re not familiar with the species, moose aren’t the type of animal you’d want to mess with in the middle of nowhere. They’ve been known to be notoriously aggressive during the autumn mating season, and a cow moose with calves can be equally, if not more, dangerous if enticed.

All the same, there’s really no such thing as a moose attack for “no good reason.”

Experts would advise against engaging a threatening moose, so as not to lead it to believe you are “putting up your dukes,” ready to fight. Instead, try to divert your path and remove yourself from the situation as quickly as possible. A predatory, meat-eating animal could take your fleeing as a sign to chase, but that’s not the case with the moose. They’re more likely to move on if you do.

We’re thinking the case with this young bull moose in the video involved a slight deviation from that advice. And things escalate quickly, forcing this snowmobiler to act upon gut instinct.

Watch the video for yourself and think about what your choice would have been.

Snowmobiler Shoots Moose – Warning: The video below may be disturbing to some.

You would like to think this gentleman could have hit the throttle on his snowmobile and quickly gone another route, or turned around completely.

Ultimately, there are few things worse in the hunting world than a wrongly downed animal and a wasted harvest. There are people who would consider this poaching, and the reaction to this video from online viewers has been brutal in some cases.

Since we don’t have a ton of information, and likely will never have the full story, we’ll just have to use it as a learning opportunity, and let it help us should we ever experience a wild animal encounter like this.

It’s smart to ask yourself these types of questions before the heat of the moment. So, after watching the video, would you have shot the moose?


  1. In this situation, I don’t really see how it could be safely avoided. He did try, though to no avail, to deter the moose and continue on his path at the very least.

    Upon review of the footage, the trail was far too narrow to attempt passage without significant risk to life and limb, as the path was only a few feet wide on either side. Turning a sled like that would likely be very difficult in such a predicament and might have left him open for the moose to charge again and hit his vulnerable back & spine. As for a retreat on foot, I wouldn’t hedge my bets on a man encumbered in full snow gear outpacing an enraged bull moose in it’s natural habitat.

    He was very lucky that he wasn’t injured by the first charge, honestly. He gave that moose every opportunity to retreat and was up against a wall in this situation. As far as ethics are concerned, he could have done a better job making sure that the animal was dispatched before leaving the scene to minimize suffrage on the part of the animal, but otherwise there wasn’t much else he could have done.

    I say he did what he had to do, though it was unfortunate for all parties involved. I hope the animal passed quickly and the meat was not wasted.

    • I agree he did the right thing and turning a snowmobile takes much to long to safely get out of that situation.

      • your an idiot! he had room to AVOID the conflict completely if you watch the video from the the beginning he had another way to go to AVOID the moose!

  2. Learning opportunity my butt, find out who that idiot is and arrest him. He made no effort to make sure it was down for good, he just wanted to be a cowboy, very obvious and stupid.

  3. This could have been totaly avoided, this idiot could have backed off and let this animal go its merry way, but he had to approach the moose and “poke” it up? He was in that animals domaine, not his, shame on you mister, i hope the appropriate authorities see this and you should be charged. Totaly disgusted ? And i am an avid hunter by the way.

    • I think your incorrect he did let the animal have a choice it charged and he has every right to shoot it. he did try scare it off by clapping his hands the only bad decision he made has not to finish it off.

    • Your not an avid hunter Gordon. Don’t piss on our heads and tell us it’s raining. your a liberal treehugger that would rather of seen that guy killed by the moose.. then him defend himself before it got out of control

  4. The other thing to think about is the other people with him. When he turns around we see there is at least one other sled with him. He could be a guide leading a snowmobile trip or something like that. While I think he could have done things differently, such as not keep inching forward when he originally saw the moose 50+ yards away, this was a tough situation. He might have been thinking about the other people with him (possibly not carrying guns or very inexperienced). I don’t like to see an animal go down like that, but it is what it is.

  5. When he first seen the moose and slowed down why didn’t he stop or walk back up the trail so the moose didn’t feel threatened ? Giving the moose some time and space to leave the area. He should of stopped and enjoyed the moment watching the moose until it wandered off. If he had to sit for 5 minute’s is it really a big deal ? I would of sat longer just to watch. By him moving up the trail it only angered the moose more and caused it to act out. This is what help’s fuel tree hugger’s and gives hunter’s a bad rap. I think he just wanted a story to bring home to brag about. Hope the D.N.R pay him a vist.

  6. I’m impressed that it went down as easy as it did. Could the shooting have been avoided? Maybe. Probably. It appears retreat or redirection may have been an option. But the only way to really know would be to be there at that time, in that situation and aware of the whole situation.

  7. I do have to agree that the actions of the snow mobile driver were over the top. It does appear that by advancing on the animal, while revving the engine, caused the animal to became threatened. As was mentioned previously, while there was no immediate threat to the snow mobile operater, could he not have just sat and watched patiently from a distance until the way was clear. Dont get me wrong, I am not anti gun, or anti hunting, or anti animal activist even. I see and appeciate the merrits of all arguments but there is a fine balance to be struck between all 3, and i believe that a bit of education would have averted this incident.

  8. At least finish the damn thing off. He had no choice but it was still alive I know he had more rounds he should have put a round in its head

  9. This man did not have an excuse to shoot this moose. He was on a sled and could have easily gone around the moose and avoided the bad situation entirely. He deserves to be in jail!

  10. Really!??? You think barking and making noise like the animals that hunt them for food is going to make him run?!?! Um, NO… If it’s not the whole pack at once he’s going to try and fight you off or kill ya. Would it really kill you to slow down and enjoy whats left of nature? At the rate we’re going moving in and killing the wildlife so we can live far away from the city there won’t be anything left to enjoy later. And couldn’t even make sure he was dead and not suffering….. I have pity for you and hope Karma finds you quickly in one form or another.

  11. I guess It just depends on the story. I am no moose expert but He doesn’t seem to be a COWBOY like someone mentioned. dunno. i do hope he went for the meat at least. Gotta love these animal lovers with the whole animals domain crap. Human lives are of higher value than animals period. he might have done it wrong etc. but I would not wish the guy dead because of a stupid mistake, Nor would you if he was a family member.

  12. The man should have turned around or went another way. There was no way he had to shoot that moose. I hope he gets arrested.

  13. I am a avid hunter, he did what he could, he didnt want to get hurt, i see nothing wrong with him shooting it, it was him shooting it all over not aiming for vitals and leaving ti to one suffer and two wasting it, how hard would i thave been to shoot it in the head once when u drove past to stop the suffering, seeing him leave it is wht makes me sick, not him killing it

  14. Seems to me he expected it to run away.. As I believe most moose would have. (I don’t think he expected it to behave that way). He certainly could have made some better decisions at the beginning of the video. But we all make choices that turn out to be mistakes. After he got himself into harms way (very possibly in a life or death situation) his actions were necessary and in my mind justified.

  15. Why did he approach the moose? You have to have some respect for nature and not just think I can do what I want because I am armed.

  16. I believe he did the right thing and whos to say he didnt call the dnr or claim the meat maybe it was hunting season he pulled over after he got out of the way of the moose just saying dont judge you do not know the whole story

  17. I agree with John..He should have stayed put when he first saw the moose. If it charged him then…The n you have to do what is necessary to protect yourself.

  18. Watching this video without knowing any background on the people or situation in the area makes it easy to make assumptions about motives and morals. I’m not saying I think he made a good or bad decision, but rather I think we need to remember there could be more to the situation than what is seen in the video. Perhaps this particular moose had been a problem lately. Maybe a moose had caused a bad injury to somebody recently or even killed someone. Maybe the man’s sister got attacked the day before. Maybe the man just hates moose. I’d like to hear an opinion from somebody who has been around moose a lot in the wild and knows their behavior well enough to judge how avoidable this was. I’d also like to know what round the guy was using! :)

  19. Actually the snowmobiler was at fault here. If he backed off and waited the moose would more than likely went on its way. Instead the moose was antagonised by the reving of teh snowmobile and the snowmobiler calling out at the moose. I hope DNR does see this and investigate fully. My thoughts are the guy should be reprimanded for his idiotic actions and be banned from the trails for at least a year and gun rights suspened for the year also.

  20. This was completely unnecessary and avoidable. There is no apparent reason this idiot couldn’t have turned and gone another way. This is something that should be pursued by legal authorities.

  21. I would say that skimobile rider intentionally antagonized the Moose into trying to defend itself against the machine. He was plenty far enough away and purposely videotaped his lame excuse to shoot the moose just to show off. He should have his license to carry concealed weapons revoked for life and if he has a hunting/fishing licened it too should be taken away. He should be fined and spend a few months in jail for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. There is no reason that the guy could not have just rode the skimobile thru the woods in another direction to get around the moose. I hope the Game Wardens hang him. there must be some way to trace the ip address of the guy that posted that movie. Confiscated the Skidoo and the Gun and his video camera equip so he does promote this kind of behavior.

  22. This man, instead of finding a route around the animal antagonized it by pushing farther and farther into its fight or flight zone….thus he’s the sole cause of the outcome and needs to be held accountable.

  23. Shoot the moose and get away from it. He didn’t have a hunting rifle, just a pistol for self defense for situations just like this. Who is to say he didn’t take the meat afterwards.

    He was probably someone who had never encountered wildlife like this and as the article said acted on pure instinct. I am an avid hunter and have a good understanding of wildlife. If a situation develops quickly where its me or another animal I will fight for my life as most people would.

    Give the guy a break.

  24. Totally wrong decision. Hope he is charged by DNR!! The snowmobile stopped at first-moose charged BUT left. Then the snowmobile got closer after only 5 seconds -stupid! Let the moose go further away and stay in defensive position . The snowmobiler provoked the moose by going closer to him. Snowmobiles are strangers
    in the woods..

  25. Did nobody see the trail to the left of when they first stopped! He had no reason to keep driving his sled forward. The moose was obviously injured if saw how it walked up the trail! He did not need to do what he did if he had stayed put in the first place or taken the trail to the left. Also no need to leave the moose like that it was still alive and he could have ended its suffering although we dont know the outcome after they had stopped out on the ice. Im sure fish and game will do a complete investigation and are aware of all of the factors.

  26. This man did the right thing. The trail everybody is talking about looks to me to be where a four wheeler went and had to back out of. It doesn’t go up very far. and with the snow so deep moose like to go in the snowmobile trails its easier walking on them. This moose was not hurt before the attack and no matter what the guy did the moose was not gonna move. Moose are naturally ornery critters and when you get too close they will attack.As for the guy going around him im sure that you are suppose to stick to the trails and if you get caught you can be fined. And with that deep of snow you neeed to be going a fair piece to stay on top of it. so what happens if your trying to go around the moose and get stuck close to the moose? you get killed.

  27. As an avid hunter and lover of the outdoors, by ALL means he should have never advanced the snowmobile after he first stopped. Just take 5-10 minutes of his precious time and enjoy the wild animal in his own natural surroundings. So I agree…I hope the DNR find this S.O.B. and give him a hefty fine.

  28. The snowmobile should have stopped. The advancing snowmobile was a threat to the moose. He was moving away till he advanced

  29. he is an ass. he provoked the moose. if he provoked his buddy like that & he wanted to fight. he’d probably shoot him to. some gun shots to the side would most likely have sent the moose on its way. a very hefty fine would make him think next time. once he saw the moose, leave it alone. more fines for leaving it there to die while suffering

  30. Could it have been handled differently? Probably. I’m guessing the folks here blathering on about turning the snowmobile around really haven’t spent to much time on one. Had the driver tried to turn around he would have almost certainly gotten himself stuck, that’s why you stay on the trails(aside from the turning radius being abysmal at best). It would be easier to literally pick the machine up by the skids and track alternately to turn it around, although you wouldn’t catch me turning my back to the moose. As for revving the engine and making noise antagonizing the moose, please tell me you’re joking, that’s what you when you come upon an animal in the wild to let them know you’re there so not to startle them(which if you do may lead to them attacking you).

  31. i don’t think he did all he could do if the moose doesn’t respond to you yelling at it or anything like that then the next step is shoot around the moose. not shoot the moose. and if it still wont get out of the way then leave it be. plus he just drove off and left it their wounded that is a big NONO especially if that man is a hunter you NEVER leave an animal to suffer like that weather it was shot out of protection of yourself or you were hunting it.

  32. I think he had every reason to do what he did, it had already came at him once and was about to charge again however I think he should have put a warning shot into the ground first before rapidly firing in an attempt to bring the animal down, I think he also should have made sure he had a quick death by firing a shot at point blank range, but then again he just got charged by a moose an probably was a bit startled and just wanted to get out of there

  33. All you people saying he shouldn’t have shot it are ridiculous. The moose charged DOWN THE TRAIL. I’d like to see you stop a 800lb+ animal by giving it a hug. Put yourself in his situation then you can judge.

  34. he should have never got closer in the first place. He should have stayed stopped, got of the sled with his friend behind him and made themselves look bigger. You can see the moose didn’t come at him tell after the second time he pulled forward. everybody knows moose are more aggressive then elk and deer so this could have been avoided. Also he still could have retreated slowly. He had two sleds for the moose to go around and it just felt threatened. If he would have moved away it would have done the same. To many people take handguns into the woods and want to pull them out right away. If you do carry a gun don’t freak out and just think. Its not that tough.

  35. Ummm did no one see the other trail the guy could have went on. As an avid hunter this guy is nothing more than a common POS

  36. I probably would have shot it (if i felt I needed too, those of you who say “he should have just turned around have obviously never driven these snowmobiles, they don’t turn that easily), BUT i would not have just left it there, that’s a waste! i would have skinned it, and if possible take all the meat back somehow, if not possible take as much as possible, I would not leave the animal there, such a waste, (well in the scheme of life i guess its not that much of a waste, some starved coyote pack or wolves probably could get their teeth into this easy meal, so i guess their would be a plus side the the negative of leaving the moose behind.

  37. This guy is an idiot, to shoot a moose just because the moose was in his way? He was in the moose’s territory…… He should have gone a different way….

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