Nick Baldwin can't wait to hit the trail.

But first he needs to recover.

The retired 65-year-old radiologist is in good condition at St. Mark's Hospital after being attacked by an 800-pound moose Wednesday morning along Toll Canyon near Parleys Summit.

"It was like there was a tornado going on. I remember being hit and going down, and he started to beat me up," Baldwin said.

At 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Baldwin and his snowshoeing friends Bob Mitchell, 72, and Bob Canestrini, 73, were attacked by the moose about 2 1/2 miles up the trail.

The men called 911, scaled a large pine tree and waited for help to arrive. Baldwin said the moose circled the tree for more than an hour before help finally arrived.

Baldwin was transferred to St. Mark's Hospital with numerous lacerations and soft-tissue injuries, as well as a fractured scapula.

Dr. Marc Mariani said Baldwin is lucky he wasn't more severely injured and added Wednesday's incident was the first moose attack he's ever seen.

Mitchell, also a retired radiologist, said he feared the worst in the wake of the attack.

"The thrashing that he took was enormous. When the moose left, there was dead silence," he said.

Baldwin, Mitchell and Canestrini have been hiking buddies for more than 25 years, traversing paths across Utah and into Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park. Although the three have come across moose before, they've never had a run-in with the animals.

"We've seen moose all the time hiking, and most are very tame. This was just a really mean guy," Baldwin said.

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The moose was immobilized after lunging at a Division of Wildlife Services officer, who shot him with a tranquilizer gun.

Baldwin was in high spirits Thursday recounting his ordeal and said he was excited to hike again with his friends.

"We have a trip planned this spring that I fully intend to be a part of. I'm not going to stare down any moose, and I certainly won't be hiking that trail again," Baldwin said.


E-mail: abenson@desnews.com

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