WARREN, VT (CNN/WCAX) -- There's a moose on the loose at a ski resort in Vermont. And the animal is taking skiers by surprise and becoming somewhat of a celebrity.
It literally chased Jeff Palmer from his skis. He says, "I was like you gotta be kidding me, this thing is coming right for me."
He was near the Gatehouse Plaza at Sugarbush two days before Christmas when he noticed a bull moose headed right for him. He popped off his skis and ran. He says, "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 the moose veered up the slope. He says, "It took me a second like riding home talking to my friends I was like 'did that actually just happen' ."
Col. Dave Lecours with the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Dept. says, "Not unusual to have a moose in the ski areas, lets face it the ski areas they're cut out of the big broad woods."
This particular moose had been spotted by hundreds of people at various spots around the resort over the past two weeks. At times, the resort has had to temporarily shut down a trail or lift until the moose moves back into the woods. Palmer is the only person to have a close encounter with it. And it was the first time he'd ever seen a moose. Palmer says, "Not the ideal way to see a moose for the first time, rather have seen it from a distance not charging at me."
Win Smith with Sugarbush Resort says, "We caution people, they are big animals, give them their clearance, don't get near them or agitate them."
One resort visitor says, "Game wardens do not think the moose is sick, but its just found any easier way to travel around the ski resort." Another says, "You get off the trails and the snow is much deeper and obviously requires more work to get around, so there's always the possibility it is just being a little bit lazy in respect on how it wants to traverse the mountain."
Wardens and the resort think Palmer's close call was an isolated incident and that there is no reason for skiers to be afraid. Actually Palmer's experience has many skiers hoping to catch a rare glimpse of that giant animal at a resort. Smith says, "I have yet to see a moose here, I have not seen one, I keep looking for them, I hope to see this one."
Palmer says, "I'm glad I haven't seen it in the sense that I don't want it to chase me, but yeah I guess I am disappointed I haven't seen a moose here since I have heard all the ruckus about it."
Palmer has been back at the resort to ski several times since he was chased by the moose. The 19-year-old from Shelbourne hasn't seen it again. And is glad it was caught on camera. He says, "It's even better that I have the video to show people because they're like 'what do you mean it chased you?' I guess I'll take my 15 minutes of fame from the moose story."