Today, I will tell you the story of the mountain lion.
|after the snow|
|early morning brush creek|
It was what happened next that made me know it was a mountain lion/cougar. After the big cat crossed the field it sat a a large rock outcropping. It's majestic chest puffed out, the mountain lion just watched.
When we first came to the residency we were given instructions about dealing with each type of animal encounter. An encounter with a mountain lion is extremely rare. But since the ranch is empty at this time and I was alone, making no sounds, I was fortunate to see one.
My training told me that when you spot a mountain lion you are never to bend down or run. 'Look big." I carried a walking stick and wore a large melon colored scarf. I attached the scarf to the stick- extending my width and opened my coat wide. Then I started singing. That alone would scare him! Carefully I began walking backwards while keeping one eye on the amazing big cat.
Since I couldn't get a photo here is a link to the Kids National Geographic. It has excellent photos of the mountain lion.
Here is a photo of me dressed to walk.
The lion kept his/her post the entire time I was in view. After this encounter, when I traveled alone, early morning or at dusk, I made a habit of singing. That way I always announced my presence. Once was enough for me. ;-)
Right now I have a show at Gallery B in Bethesda MD. Many of my residency paintings are there. Come if you can. It ends December 30th.