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What Would You Do If I Said: "Hey, there's a mountain lion standing on the side of the trail about 1000 feet up that way. I'm outta here dude!"

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What would you do if I told you there was a mtn lion 1000 feet up the trail?

 

Please post your considered responses.

 

I was hiking today in the Marin headlands and the sun was just about to set when a mtn biker came toward me and said that he had been coming down a trail and passed two hikers who said they had passed a mtn lion. He proceeded down the trail and passed the mtn lion standing in the area where the trail meets a fire road. It's a fire road and wide where he saw the cougar so it wasn't like he had to pass right by the cat.

 

I said to the mtn biker. Sure it wasn't a bobcat? Mtn lions have long tails and bobcats have noticeably short tails. He said it was a long tail. Guessed the cat was about 150lbs.

 

I said, "Shoot, I'm heading back to the parking lot." And it was really weird to hear him sound almost disappointed that I wasn't going to go see the cat. Then a woman jogger approached and I said to her what the mtn biker had said and she said "Oh I'm just going up to the top of the rise here". I was thinking, Golly, I just told you there's a mtn lion 1000 feet that way and you don't want to turn around and go the other way?

 

The mtn biker and the jogger took off. I came upon another female jogger, heading out from the parking lot, and I told her what I had been told etc. She said, shoot, I wanted to go running over there but I don't want any of that. And off she ran in the direction of the mtn lion.

 

It was a pretty strange and unexpected set of reactions to news that a mtn lion--est. at 150 lbs--was standing by the side of a trail at sunset.

 

What is it with people? What is it with you? Enlighten me because tonight was just plain confusing.

 

 

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Some people just don't think....Darwinism at its best. To answer your question I would have walked the other way and check my back. You never know if the cougar is hungry or defending its territory with its cubs. I would have called a Park Ranger as heads up.

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See I see it completely different, I would head up the trail with the thought of getting a view of one of the most badass animals in the United States. Mountain Lion sightings are so rare and attacks very few there is hardly no chance of you getting hurt. Well unless your bleeding from some lower region. :wee:

If your afraid because you heard about it, Well you might as well turn in your man card for what we do. Think about it, the cat wasn't stalking, it was sitting right out in plain view. Think about how many times we travel trails less traveled and have been watched by such a creature and we had no clue. Are you never going to the Marin Headlands again? Would you give up swimming because there might be a white shark there?

Not take a trail because a rattle snake might be there?

You just passed up the chance of a lifetime, a view so rare one should feel honored to have witnessed.

I'd go with no fear just for the chance.

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Some people just don't think....Darwinism at its best. To answer your question I would have walked the other way and check my back. You never know if the cougar is hungry or defending its territory with its cubs. I would have called a Park Ranger as heads up.

 

Good call Norcal. I made my way back to the parking lot. There was long distance being run in the area. So I let the organizers know. When I got home later I made a call to the NPS police.

 

See I see it completely different, I would head up the trail with the thought of getting a view of one of the most badass animals in the United States. Mountain Lion sightings are so rare and attacks very few there is hardly no chance of you getting hurt. Well unless your bleeding from some lower region. :wee:

If your afraid because you heard about it, Well you might as well turn in your man card for what we do. Think about it, the cat wasn't stalking, it was sitting right out in plain view. Think about how many times we travel trails less traveled and have been watched by such a creature and we had no clue. Are you never going to the Marin Headlands again? Would you give up swimming because there might be a white shark there?

Not take a trail because a rattle snake might be there?

You just passed up the chance of a lifetime, a view so rare one should feel honored to have witnessed.

I'd go with no fear just for the chance.

 

Interesting response. No responses are bad responses Winch. I think a lot of people would have done what you would do. Which is interesting to me. Risk attack in order to see the amazing spectacle. That same impulse is what leads people to the sea when tsunamis strike. And of course there was that poor fellow who was killed by the tiger at the SF zoo.

 

Google mtn lion attacks and find the page that has all the attacks from the past ten years indexed w/ summaries. Mtn lions are like a big ass pit bull. When they grab you it takes quite a lot of effort to bust him off. And meanwhile they are biting you and ripping off your scalp and face etc. If someone told you a 150lb pit bull was hanging out on the edge of the trail up around the corner would you go up there to see it? These are wild animals, not sloths in a zoo chewing on coconut leaves. There are some attacks in which people came upon a lion sitting under a tree and were attacked. In one attack, a woman got a flat tire, got out to check, and was attacked as she leaned over to check tire. Etc.

 

I know how rare it is to see mtn lions and if I had had binocs and the right angle of view I would have certainly tried to catch a glimpse. I said to the biker who reported the cat to me that that was the last time he'd ever see a mtn lion and he was a lucky guy to have seen one. I am actually going to be back out hiking today and I will be checking for tracks at some of the watering holes.

 

Attacks are very rare, because lions are rare, so I'm not worried about long term. My post was mainly just about the case where you are told that the lion is around the corner. For me, the gamble isn't worth it.

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its not that I lost my "mancard" it's more that I don't think the risk is worth the gamble, would I run away if I saw a rattlesnake on the road? No. You also wouldn't catch me jumping into the water if someone told me there was a great white shark in the water just to catch a glimpse of it, I know my limits...as you know yours. ;)

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I always carry "pepper spray" (mace)  & a camera with me when I'm out hiking.So I think the urge to see the cat & take a pic would outway my fear of being eaten .I guess as Winch said I'f he's just sitting out there in the open,I don't think he's in the stalking mode. I would hope. And if he can eat me with a mouthful  & eyesful of mace,more power to him. But then again,the closer I got to him,it's very possible my "Macho" would say "Andale" And I'd be out of there. Very thought prevoking question


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Hmm, would I try to get a peek at a mtn. lion if I knew if it was there. I guess it depends a bit on the terrain and whether there's open land to keep it's ability to stock and ambush down to a minimum. I'm also in the headlands or on 'Tam a lot, running or biking in the late afternoon, and have felt pretty vulnerable going through the forests and thickets at dusk. I'm nearly 6' and size is a deterrent. I've been in situations as described with my kids, and since they are much more the tasty morsel size, we bug out.


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its not that I lost my "mancard" it's more that I don't think the risk is worth the gamble, would I run away if I saw a rattlesnake on the road? No. You also wouldn't catch me jumping into the water if someone told me there was a great white shark in the water just to catch a glimpse of it, I know my limits...as you know yours. ;)

 

Got to remember the next time fishing near you to tell you I saw a Mountain Lion. Get rid of some of the fishing pressure. ;)

 

Did you know there are sightings of mountain lions around most of the Pacifica beaches? If your worried why would you go fishing in the area? Because you didn't see it in plain sight?

As for you Oki you didn't want to walk on a trail where the cat was a 1000 feet away but you'd GO AND LOOK AROUND the big cats watering hole? When it was hidden in the bushes? Knowing limits is fine but making barriers for yourself will just hold you back. Of course some of the places I have fished might explain my cavalier attitude.

What wouldn't I do? Bungie jump, hang glide, parachute, or jump into one of those para gliders thet tow behind those Mexican boats down south. LOL I would never do any of those activities. :D

 

Heck I've fished Hunters point in the middle of the night and that would be more dangerous than walking a trail a Mountain lion had been seen on. :wee:

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Got to remember the next time fishing near you to tell you I saw a Mountain Lion. Get rid of some of the fishing pressure. ;)

 

 

hahahaha! touche! :D

 

 

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Hmm, would I try to get a peek at a mtn. lion if I knew if it was there. I guess it depends a bit on the terrain and whether there's open land to keep it's ability to stock and ambush down to a minimum. I'm also in the headlands or on 'Tam a lot, running or biking in the late afternoon, and have felt pretty vulnerable going through the forests and thickets at dusk. I'm nearly 6' and size is a deterrent. I've been in situations as described with my kids, and since they are much more the tasty morsel size, we bug out.

 

Packer, You can appreciate the situ then. I ran into the mtn biker on the Miwok trail between Old Springs Trail and the Wolf Ridge Trail. The mtn biker had descended Wolf Ridge trail and saw the cat at the junction with the Miwok Trail.

 

I visited hawk hill and chatted with the guy who runs the observation program there. He said that mtn lions had been spotted in the past on the ridge that lies between Rodeo Valley and 101. I was also told that lion kills have been found from time to time in the area of hawk hill.

 

 

 

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Got to remember the next time fishing near you to tell you I saw a Mountain Lion. Get rid of some of the fishing pressure. ;)

Did you know there are sightings of mountain lions around most of the Pacifica beaches? If your worried why would you go fishing in the area? Because you didn't see it in plain sight?

As for you Oki you didn't want to walk on a trail where the cat was a 1000 feet away but you'd GO AND LOOK AROUND the big cats watering hole? When it was hidden in the bushes? Knowing limits is fine but making barriers for yourself will just hold you back. Of course some of the places I have fished might explain my cavalier attitude.

What wouldn't I do? Bungie jump, hang glide, parachute, or jump into one of those para gliders thet tow behind those Mexican boats down south. LOL I would never do any of those activities. :D

Heck I've fished Hunters point in the middle of the night and that would be more dangerous than walking a trail a Mountain lion had been seen on. :wee:

 

Winch, You've confused the issue: it's not about whether or not to go where cats could be. The issue is: if you knew the cat was there, would you go to look at it from close quarters?

 

It's not about whether to go fishing in Hunters Pt. It's about whether to get out of the car to go fishing when you see thirty kids hanging around in the dark drinking and looking unfriendly.

 

 

 

 

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About 3 years ago I started a Mtn Bike ride from the HMB fire station right at the end of main street, just south of town, where the road meets hwy 1.

 

My ride was from there, up Higgins canyon and onto the fire road that leads into the Purisma creek open preserve. I ride to the top of the mountain until I hit skyline, then along skyline and down Tunitas creek road.

 

Anyway, about ½ way up the mountain, I came around a corner and there was a mountain lion crossing from right to left about 75 yards up. I stopped pretty quickly. I can’t believe that cat never turned its head to look my direction. The cat was jet black in color from the top of its head down to just above its elbows. It was one of the most gorgeous things I have ever seen.

 

I gestimate the cat was about 120-150 lbs. The top of his back to ground was about 30” high; in total length I would say 4 feet not counting his long tail. I waited about 10 minutes for the thing to get farther away from the road before I continued on my way. I also let other hikers know what I saw and nobody seemed too worried including myself.

 

When the big guy upstairs says my time is up… my time is up.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by okisutch View Post

 

Packer, You can appreciate the situ then. I ran into the mtn biker on the Miwok trail between Old Springs Trail and the Wolf Ridge Trail. The mtn biker had descended Wolf Ridge trail and saw the cat at the junction with the Miwok Trail.

 

I visited hawk hill and chatted with the guy who runs the observation program there. He said that mtn lions had been spotted in the past on the ridge that lies between Rodeo Valley and 101. I was also told that lion kills have been found from time to time in the area of hawk hill.

 

Yep, going from shoreline up Miwok to Wolf Ridge trail and back is a bread and butter run for me. Usually have a least one dog with me though. Ran wolf ridge a few years ago with the fog in at sunset. The trial was just above the cloud deck, don't know if the better description is running to heaven, or running on acid, but it was pretty cool.

 

 

 

Don't forget that there so many deer ( rats w/ antlers) around, plus turkey, plus rabbits plus unsupervised pets (oh, no! fifi!) that  Mtn lions have plenty of food. What's easier, us or Bambi?

 

 

 

 

 

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