The Chilkat State Park’s popular Battery Point Trailhead on Monday, May 27, 2024, in Haines, Alaska. A cow moose protecting a calf charged four people on the trail recently. (Rashah McChesney/Chilkat Valley News)

A moose protecting a calf charged four people on the Battery Point Trail on Friday afternoon. No one reported any injuries. But state biologists say it’s a reminder to be cautious on local trails this time of year. 

Alaska Department of Fish and Game Area Management Biologist Carl Koch said the local office got a report that two people were walking with dogs on leash and another couple was in the area when the moose charged. 

“All of them ran and hid behind trees,” he said on Saturday. He said it’s lucky everyone knew what to do. 

“We always tell people ‘don’t run from a bear.’ But I would say just about always run from a moose,” he said. “You put some distance between you and the calf and, of course, the cow. I’ve run from moose and I recommend other people do too.”

The Battery Point Trail sees extensive use in the summer, including by cruise ship tourists who travel there from the cruise ship dock. 

Fish and Game staff in Haines called local police who put out an emergency alert telling people to avoid the area on Friday. 

But Koch, who is currently flying over Southeast communities doing moose surveys, said it’s important not just to focus on Battery Point as there have been several emergency alerts about moose throughout the Chilkat Valley. 

A cruise ship is scheduled to arrive in Haines Monday afternoon. Tourism Manager Rebecca Hylton said she told the local cruise line port agent about the aggressive encounter so it could be passed along to the ships. 

But Koch said sometimes those warnings backfire. 

“Some people might go there to try and find and photograph the moose, ignoring safety and common sense,” he said. 

Last week a photographer in Homer  was killed by a moose cow while he and a friend were trying to find her and her twin calves. 

It’s a state park trail, so Koch said staff there have the authority to keep the trail open, close it or put up a sign warning visitors about an aggressive moose in the area. 

There is no sign posted on the trail, but Southeast Region State Parks Superintendent Preston Kroes said Monday it appears the moose has left the trail. 

“Sometimes it clears itself up pretty quickly, especially with moose,” he said. “They tend to roam pretty quick. If it were a bear on a food cache or something, that’s a completely different story.” 

Kroes said he and a group of people walked Battery Point trail on Sunday. 

“No moose in sight, nothing happening. It’s pretty much all cleared up,” he said.