With its reputation as a place frequently overrun with tourists, Denali National Park is occasionally taken for granted by citizens of Alaska. It's easy to forget -- as tour bus after tour bus full of summer travelers drives in and out of the park, tourists piling out and snapping pictures at scenic hotspots -- that the park is full of spectacular scenery and remote enough to see wildlife up close and personal.
One reminder of the beauty in Denali was recently posted to Vimeo by Florida photographer Joe Vogan, who in spring of 2010 captured a lengthy game of cat-and-mouse in the park on a grander scale: bear-and-moose.
"I knew it was something special when I was shooting," said Vogan, who watched the wilderness drama play out for more than a half an hour, while camping near the Savage River in the park.
The bear can be seen stalking a mother moose and her two calves, and when mama moose decides its gotten close enough, she charges and forces the bear back to square one. Eventually, she leads her young through a river.
"The moose was smart to take the calves through the river," Vogan said, "because the bear had a serious problem picking up a good scent, as you can see towards the end of the clip."
So it appears the calves survived another day in the vast wilderness of Denali, and the bear had to go look elsewhere for its next meal.
Vogan's video is available for view on Vimeo and on YouTube (under the username Florida Images on both sites), as well as many of his other videos. To see some of Vogan's other excellent work from around the world, pay a visit to his photography website, joevogan.com.
While "Sarah Palin's Alaska" has finished its eight-week run on TLC, Alaska Dispatch continues to take a look at the Last Frontier as it's experienced by residents across the state -- urban and rural, young and old, from all walks of life. You've seen "Sarah Palin's Alaska" -- now welcome to Our Alaska.