SEQUOIA NATIONAL PARK, Calif. August 7, 2017 – On August 4, 2017 a video of a mountain lion (Puma concolor) taken by a park visitor on the High Sierra Trail east of Crescent Meadow inside Sequoia National Park was posted to YouTube.
While the visitor and the mountain lion had no physical interaction, the video clearly illustrates how one might catch a glimpse of what appears to be a long tail, and want to approach further to verify that your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you.
“The big thing these visitors did right was that they didn’t panic and run, even after they were surprised by seeing the mountain lion perched above them. Probably the most important message to get out to visitors is not to act like prey if they encounter a mountain lion,” said Wildlife Biologist Daniel Gammons.
National Parks are wild places, and visitors should always be mindful of their surroundings. For your safety and theirs, do not approach animals, regardless of size. Observe wildlife from a distance, avoid hiking alone, and be sure to tell friends or family your plans and when you plan to return.
When traveling in mountain lion country, visitors should assume that mountain lions are present within the landscape and know what to do if they encounter one. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has additional information on living in and visiting areas where mountain lions can be found at https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/keep-me-wild/lion