This postcard's photo was taken by Michelle Barnes-Ness and printed by Alaskan Postcard Classics on environmentally friendly inks and paper. The card was a gift along with 24 other cards from friends Jan and Rick. They are serious garage sale folks and found the cards at an ongoing garage sale in Fairbanks.
The caption on the reverse side said this particular moose charged, kicked the locomotive, then jumped off the tracks. Fortunately for this moose the train was not moving. Usually their orneriness earns them a trip to oblivion.
This year more than 300 moose will be hit by trains in Alaska. That is not so much a prediction but a figure based on average strikes for the past 25 years. If the snow is heavy, more will die. Even though moose can weight up to 1,600 pounds, a freight train with several thousand tons of mass moving at 40 miles per hour with a steel cattle guard easily wins the battle of nature verses machine. It takes a fully loaded freight train nearly a mile to stop. Moose use the tracks to avoid floundering in the deep snow -- which in some areas can be eight feet deep. One year a train on a 712-mile round trip collided with 24 moose. The only good to come of this carnage is that some of the moose killed by trains are savaged for local food banks.