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Bar Harbor woman and her dog hiking 26 mountains in 26 days for MDI Search & Rescue

To raise money and awareness for MDI Search and Rescue, two locals have undertaken a unique adventure this month with one of them possibly being the tiniest fundraiser in island history.
Published: Sep. 17, 2021 at 8:41 PM EDT
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BAR HARBOR, Maine (WABI) - MDI Search and Rescue is a non-profit, volunteer group that assists Acadia National Park Rangers when hikers find themselves in a challenging or dangerous position.

Their funding comes solely through grants and donations.

To raise money and awareness for MDI Search and Rescue, two locals have undertaken a unique adventure this month with one of them possibly being the tiniest fundraiser in island history.

As Acadia National Park continues to see visitations rise, the need for MDI Search and Rescue has never been greater, nor has the need to fund it.

Enter Moose, a fundraiser whose goals are considerably bigger than he is.

“Moose is a five pound, five year old little poodle mix,” said Melissa Carroll. “And he absolutely loves hiking.”

Moose was rescued from the SPCA of Hancock County three years ago.

Now Moose and his owner Melissa have set out to hike 26 mountain peaks in Acadia National Park in 26 days on what they call the “Mountains with Moose Campaign,” with a goal of raising 5-thousand dollars towards things like gear and training for MDI search and rescue.

“There have been so many peoples lives who’ve been saved, and things could’ve been a lot worse without them, so its critical that they continue to be funded, and continue to be able to help out,” said Carroll.

Over the last two years MDI search and rescue certainly has been busy. Last year they received a record 40 requests for assistance. This year by the end of August, they’re already at 41.

“Which means anything from helping to carry out hikers who have fallen and injured themselves to helping to find people who are lost or have heat stroke or have just other random medical events on the trails,” said Carroll.

For Moose, the journey is as important as the destination, but there’s still nothing like taking a break when you reach the top.

“You know, the wind blows in his ears and we sit down and we have a snack,” said Carroll. “He enjoys hanging out up there. So I think he just likes being out and about as much as we do.”

And while he doesn’t actually have a sense of things like money and fundraisers, Melissa says if he did, Moose would jump at the chance to do his part as a rescue dog to make sure people can get rescued too.

“He’d be excited,” said Carroll. “Moose does love other people, and he would be excited to help others.”

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