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A pair of moose walk through the parking lot of the Caribou Village Shopping Center at Lakeview Drive in downtown Nederland on Tuesday morning. (Courtesy photo)
A pair of moose walk through the parking lot of the Caribou Village Shopping Center at Lakeview Drive in downtown Nederland on Tuesday morning. (Courtesy photo)
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Not too far from Nederland on the Peak to Peak Highway is a moose crossing sign; perhaps the next one will have to go right downtown.

One area resident who did not care to be identified in the media took a series of photos of a cow moose and a yearling when he saw them after he emerged from the Train Car Coffee & Yogurt company where he’d stopped in for his morning brew Tuesday morning.

The two animals were strolling in unhurried fashion through the parking lot at Caribou Village Shopping Center, 20 Lakeshore Drive, the central business hub for the town of 1,500 residents, which includes a grocery, the town police department and neighboring Carousel of Happiness.

Despite the photographer asking that his name not be publicized, he did post the photos on social media, drawing many comments from others who were delighted with the surprise end-of-year visitors.

“All that searching (we) did for moose and now they are going through town,” one person commented.

“It looks like the town in the TV show ‘Northern Exposure,’” offered another.

“Now if I could only find that tourist three years ago who harassed me on my break demanding to know where she could see a moose,” another lamented.

More typically, moose are seen in riparian areas outside of town, with the Brainard Lake area north of Nederland being one spot where visitors, and hunters alike can enjoy viewing — or harvesting — them, which has been known to breed conflict between those constituencies.

The Mountain Man Outdoor Store is located at the downtown plaza. John Thompson, who owns the store with his wife, was not at work at the time the moose moved through.

However, Thompson said, “I live across the street, and at one point about the same time in the morning, my dogs were just going (crazy). They must have gone by my place.”

Asked if that was uncommon for downtown Nederland, Thompson quipped, “It’s every day at 9:15 a.m.”

More seriously, he said, “They do, though, especially in the downtime, after the holidays. They will wander through sometimes.

“They are creatures of habit, just like you and me.”

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