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Cougars caught on camera: A stark reminder we live among very big cats (VIDEO)

SEATTLE TIMES.COM –  When an image of a pair of mountain lions flashed on my laptop, I couldn’t help but glance over my shoulder. I was sitting on a stump just a few feet from where my newest trail camera, which caught the images, was mounted. The photos were more than a week old, and the cats were long gone, but my heart was thumping in my chest nonetheless.

This wasn’t the first time I had photographed cougars near my home in the Leavenworth area, but it was the clearest evidence to date of what was hunting in the woods around me.

The footage reiterated what I already knew: Mountain lions (also known as cougars and pumas) live among us, and even thrive in the Pacific Northwest.

Still it was a cold truth.

The closest thing we have to an African lion walked by the spot where I sat just a few days ago in broad daylight. When I imagined meeting the pair on the trail, I shuddered.

The first time you photograph a large adult cougar outside your house, there’s a sense of awe, followed by a touch of wooziness. You find that you decide a few things very quickly.  [full article]

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