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  1. #1
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    Cougar on Blanchard Mtn

    Didn't sound very uninterested in people.

    http://news.bellinghamherald.com/sto...s/201815.shtml

  2. #2
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    Cougars in Bellingham

    Monte- I will tell you why you got Cougars up there looking for snacks. You people are all vegetarians or close to it. One of my experiences in Bellingham was in Fairhaven. I went into this bookstore which also is a restaurant. I was really looking for something to eat. After waiting for about 20 minutes I was seated. I looked at the menu and it was pretty much vegetarian. I ordered some chili which I think was like $8.00 for a bowl. I got the chilli and found it was meatless chilli. Everyone was talking about how good this bookstore- restaurant was. I left looking for something to eat. Wendys has chilli for a buck that has more protein in it than Bellinghams bookstore-restaurant.
    Back to the Cougar subject. I dont know if the cougars would be so bold around here. I know the kids at Cle Elum High School tagged a couple of cougars. Lately on my rides I always see someone packing a rifle. Its bear season now. Although sometimes I dont know if the season matters. Everytime I see hunters I am alway reminded of the Southpark episode where they shoot everthing and claim self defense. I am sure the cougars are deeper in the woods around here than in Bellingham. If the game department is smart they wont say anything but just go out and shoot the cougar. If they make an issue out of it the trail might be closed. .

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by borregokid
    Monte- I will tell you why you got Cougars up there looking for snacks. You people are all vegetarians or close to it. One of my experiences in Bellingham was in Fairhaven. I went into this bookstore which also is a restaurant. I was really looking for something to eat. After waiting for about 20 minutes I was seated. I looked at the menu and it was pretty much vegetarian. I ordered some chili which I think was like $8.00 for a bowl. I got the chilli and found it was meatless chilli. Everyone was talking about how good this bookstore- restaurant was. I left looking for something to eat. Wendys has chilli for a buck that has more protein in it than Bellinghams bookstore-restaurant.
    I had to laugh. I know the place of which you speak. Icecream is about all I've had there. I'm vegetarian, so the chili would have been okay with me, but the wait and price would have sucked.

    Quote Originally Posted by borregokid
    Back to the Cougar subject. I dont know if the cougars would be so bold around here. I know the kids at Cle Elum High School tagged a couple of cougars. Lately on my rides I always see someone packing a rifle. Its bear season now. Although sometimes I dont know if the season matters. Everytime I see hunters I am alway reminded of the Southpark episode where they shoot everthing and claim self defense. I am sure the cougars are deeper in the woods around here than in Bellingham. If the game department is smart they wont say anything but just go out and shoot the cougar. If they make an issue out of it the trail might be closed. .
    Yeah, we need more shooters in the woods. Really. There was a woman that just this year sometime, was riding her horse on another mountain in the area with her dog. The dog got attacked by a cougar, she dismounted and fired her pistol over the animals, into the air or something like that. Scared the cat off, probably saved the dog's life, or at least saved it from more injuries.

    I agree, the cat should get snuffed, quietly. It's entirely too interested in people.

    Do bear bells work for cougars? Sure they do. I rode with one on my bike last weekend and didn't get attacked by an cougars.

    Monte

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    No cougars-just bears

    When I lived in Issaquah all the water started drying up from one of the streams. They went and found out it was beavers damming up the stream. The game department didnt tell anyone what the problem was they just hired some trappers to get rid of the beavers and then dismantled the dams. When they had the cougars running around Issaquah about 5 years ago the Chief of Police and Mayor decided the Cougars had to go. They were eventually shot by the game department. Places like Issaquah and Bellingham have lots of kids and I think thats what people think about most is the safety of the kids. Right now its bear season, so havent seen any. But last couple of days have seen a lot of elk and some wild turkey on Cle Elum Ridge. This ridge has more wildlife on it than anyplace I have seen before.

    After I wrote the above I biked from my house to Borneo's campsite on the Teanaway. On the way back finally saw a bear. He didnt stick around. I did see some cougars although they were all driving east back to WSU
    Last edited by borregokid; 08-10-2004 at 10:07 PM. Reason: New info

  5. #5
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    Recently on a ride in Capital Forest down by Olympia i saw my first set of cat tracks. Ive heard of sightings down there, but had never seen anything myself. There were 3 LARGE tracks next to a water hole. No claws in them so it couldnt have been a bear track. Sorta spooky, but at least theres plenty of deer and other critters in those woods......

  6. #6
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    Fears about wildlife is disproportionate. Automobiles kill 43,000 people per year.

    Quote Originally Posted by Monte
    I had to laugh. I know the place of which you speak. Icecream is about all I've had there. I'm vegetarian, so the chili would have been okay with me, but the wait and price would have sucked.



    Yeah, we need more shooters in the woods. Really. There was a woman that just this year sometime, was riding her horse on another mountain in the area with her dog. The dog got attacked by a cougar, she dismounted and fired her pistol over the animals, into the air or something like that. Scared the cat off, probably saved the dog's life, or at least saved it from more injuries.

    I agree, the cat should get snuffed, quietly. It's entirely too interested in people.

    Do bear bells work for cougars? Sure they do. I rode with one on my bike last weekend and didn't get attacked by an cougars.

    Monte
    Living in Bellingham, riding and hiking around here, I've seen cats a few times--and tracks plenty of times--and have always found the experience rewarding. Big cats have always been around here, they're always out there watching you-- even if you don't know it-- but they almost always hear or smell us noisy folk approaching and hide; as the cougar in the newspaper article was attempting to do. The women on horseback saw it, then panicked and ran; which is exactly what you're not supposed to do. Once they realized this they stopped, as did the cougar, which then turned off and left. Cat's instinctual response is to chase running animals; this attribute also makes them easy to psyche out. You ever watch housecats socialize? Cougars are no different.

    We humans, on the other hand, have an intellectual ability (although we obviously seldom seem to use it en masse) to make distinctions between real and perceived dangers, and choose our responses to various situations. We also have an important ablility to appreciate the sublime beauty of powerful natural elements over which we have no ultimate control. This uniquely human quality is necessary for our own physical and mental survival--and is why we have parks and protected species lists.

    I get really depressed when I see folks get hysterical and bloodthirsty over wildlife sightings. I mean no offense, but I find that kind of response simply thoughtless and atavistic.
    Be proud to be human, use your gift of awe!

    Look up the stats: if you live long enough, you WILL eventally die in a car accident. Where is the outrage about this ongoing atrocity? Innocent children getting run over every day, entire families killed in crashes. But what do we do about it? Slow down at the scene for a better look.
    Spin

  7. #7
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    Atavistic?

    Quote Originally Posted by Spinny
    Living in Bellingham, riding and hiking around here, I've seen cats a few times--and tracks plenty of times--and have always found the experience rewarding. Big cats have always been around here, they're always out there watching you-- even if you don't know it-- but they almost always hear or smell us noisy folk approaching and hide; as the cougar in the newspaper article was attempting to do. The women on horseback saw it, then panicked and ran; which is exactly what you're not supposed to do. Once they realized this they stopped, as did the cougar, which then turned off and left. Cat's instinctual response is to chase running animals; this attribute also makes them easy to psyche out. You ever watch housecats socialize? Cougars are no different.

    We humans, on the other hand, have an intellectual ability (although we obviously seldom seem to use it en masse) to make distinctions between real and perceived dangers, and choose our responses to various situations. We also have an important ablility to appreciate the sublime beauty of powerful natural elements over which we have no ultimate control. This uniquely human quality is necessary for our own physical and mental survival--and is why we have parks and protected species lists.

    I get really depressed when I see folks get hysterical and bloodthirsty over wildlife sightings. I mean no offense, but I find that kind of response simply thoughtless and atavistic.
    Be proud to be human, use your gift of awe!

    Look up the stats: if you live long enough, you WILL eventally die in a car accident. Where is the outrage about this ongoing atrocity? Innocent children getting run over every day, entire families killed in crashes. But what do we do about it? Slow down at the scene for a better look.
    Spin
    Atavistic = Regressive, Throwback, Instinctual.

    Well if instinctual is a concern about becoming kitty food, I'm guilty as charged.

    I agree with Monte, I think this cat is too interested in people and by standing it's ground when they approached and by following the riders down the trail in full view was exhibiting unusual cat behavior and appears to have modified the normal cougar behavior of avoiding contact with humans and is a threat. Enough that I fired off an e-mail to the State DFW to ask if anything had been done about this incident and recently got a call back from Larry Bowman of DFW.

    Briefly, our discussion centered on my concern that the cat was becoming interested in humans to the point of this being stalking behavior and that the cat should be put down in the interest of public safety. Larry first stated that he had interviewed the women involved in the incident and concidered their story to be credible. He went on to say that he considered the cat's behavior to be normal and that from a DFW perspective there was no reason for the animal to be euthanized (sp?). I responded by stating that in my 46 years of spending lots of time outdoors I had never even seen a cat, only footprints once and that this cat should have fled when the riders approached rather than just standing his ground like he did. Larry said again that from his perspective this was normal behavior ( I disagree) and I had nothing to worry about -there hasn't been a fatal cat attack in WA since 1920 etc. Well, there have been numerous well publisized atttacks in California lately and a very recent incident in Arizona. I think our cats here are well fed with the abundant deer population so I'm not too worried but I'm definitely thinking about this guy because.....

    I ride Blanchard Hill all the time in the winter, (way too much horse **** there the rest of the time) and find it to be my favorite place to ride during the off season when all the good trails are closed by snow. I ride by myself all the time as it's not easy to find other riders available midweek. I really like the riding there and probably will continue this year, though this cat has got me thinking. After talking to Larry the one way I might modify my behavior in the future is by putting some eyes on the back of my helmet, apparently it's kind of proven that a cat may follow you if he thinks you can't see him but if he thinks you can he's less likely to follow. So if you see some nut riding around Blanchard this winter with eyes on the back of his head you'll know its me!

    Check out the pic of the kitty taken legally by a hunter up Taneum Creek not long ago--they're out there! Though most aren't 200 pounds like this beast. Don't forget to keep an eye on your backside..............
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  8. #8
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    Cougars become habituated to urban areas

    For a Jaws-like and eye-opening read I recommend the book "The Beast in the Garden" by David Baron - about how Boulder, CO strove to become an urban wilderness and treated mountain lions as if they were the town pets. The cats became habituated to the human lifestyle to the point where Front Range urban areas became part of their range. Ultimately several hikers/joggers were attacked and one was ultimately killed. It was only then that the wildlife managers realized they needed to be more proactive in the cat management - i.e., removing them before they became a problem.

    I solo ride the Boise foothills during the pre-dawn hours and sometimes it scares the cr@p out of me because I know they're out there and I know they're watching. I experienced some of the same while I lived in the Puget Sound region. Contact between humans and cats is inevitable I suppose as urban lands encroach on the cats natural habitat.

    I'm not sure I've got the nads to say "shoo kitty" at a 100lb+ cat but I suppose I'll make something up if it happens. But I'm still going to keep riding when and where I do. I might paint some luminescent eyes on the front and sides of my helmet though. Any maybe wear a jersey with really big eyes on it.
    Nobody cares what kind of bike you ride.

  9. #9
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    What are we really so afraid of?

    Quote Originally Posted by TwistedCrank
    For a Jaws-like and eye-opening read I recommend the book "The Beast in the Garden" by David Baron - about how Boulder, CO strove to become an urban wilderness and treated mountain lions as if they were the town pets. The cats became habituated to the human lifestyle to the point where Front Range urban areas became part of their range. Ultimately several hikers/joggers were attacked and one was ultimately killed. It was only then that the wildlife managers realized they needed to be more proactive in the cat management - i.e., removing them before they became a problem.

    I solo ride the Boise foothills during the pre-dawn hours and sometimes it scares the cr@p out of me because I know they're out there and I know they're watching. I experienced some of the same while I lived in the Puget Sound region. Contact between humans and cats is inevitable I suppose as urban lands encroach on the cats natural habitat.

    I'm not sure I've got the nads to say "shoo kitty" at a 100lb+ cat but I suppose I'll make something up if it happens. But I'm still going to keep riding when and where I do. I might paint some luminescent eyes on the front and sides of my helmet though. Any maybe wear a jersey with really big eyes on it.
    Thanks for the responses. I'm always interested in all the reasons what people feel about wildlife. This post is in reply both to Gearx and TwistedCrank.

    You know, usually I try to see the lighter, funnier side of everything and joined this bulletin board thinking in this vein. The local cat issue spurned my first post on any internet message board site ever, and now I'm arguing with words written by casual strangers. So it feels kind of odd to be so serious in this venue. But I feel very strongly about wildlife issues, so...

    Yes, you may be attacked by a cat--anything can happen. But, to be realistic, the likelihood is so extremely low that you are several million times more likely to die a horrible death on your toilet every morning of your life, or of a virus you've never had before, or as victim of mistaken identity by some thug, or electrocuted in your kitchen making breakfast, or by the tooth of your neighbors dog, or murdered by a lover (yeah, that's right, HER!), or hit by a falling tree while mt.biking.
    I mean, come on, where's the rationality!? These animals are beautiful, integral to the ecosystem, and have been here longer than we have. And will probably be here long after.

    Fact is, these animals--like grizzlies and sharks--are remaining characters of a wilderness that we yet, though we ignore the fact, remain apart of as we ultimately depend upon it for clean air, water, and the intricate system of life from which we eat.
    And it's great that these big animals manage, still, to tap into the deepest, oldest aspects of our minds; the remnant instinctual brain that used to compete against them over food, thousands of years ago.
    Thus, when we straddle our bikes for a "real adventure", pedalling off into their dwelling places, do they allow us to feel--or at least pretend in our own dark, nightmarish imaginations--our true place in this world. So enjoy it! Jeex.
    The cougar's true contemporary situation is that they impotently attempt merely to survive amidst habitat loss and increasing human encroachment.

    The real situation isn't that the cats are adapting to urban areas, it's that suburban areas are ever adapting to wilderness boarderland habitat, as Twisted Crank stated. That said, regarding the theme of the aforementioned book "The Beast in the Garden", I think it is safe to say we may all hereby learn to avoid obsurdist, hippydipsh*t engineering attempts to domesticate predatory wildlife.

    Twisted Crank, I F'ing love Idaho.

    That's enough. Holy cow.

  10. #10
    meh....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spinny
    Yes, you may be attacked by a cat--anything can happen. But, to be realistic, the likelihood is so extremely low that you are several million times more likely to die a horrible death on your toilet every morning of your life, or of a virus you've never had before, or as victim of mistaken identity by some thug, or electrocuted in your kitchen making breakfast, or by the tooth of your neighbors dog, or murdered by a lover (yeah, that's right, HER!), or hit by a falling tree while mt.biking.
    I was almost hit by a tree this summer. I had to stop riding and backup on the trail or I would have had my clock cleaned, so to speak.

    You can speak of statistics till the cows come home. But a cat doing things that are not normal, i.e. stalking humans on horses, pretty much tosses that cat out of the statistical group. If the cat keeps stalking people it would seem that it's not behaving normally. "A cat sees you a hundred times before you see it", which is fine. It can watch all it wants, from a distance. Just don't become interested in me, or others on the trail. I saw a cougar while riding last year near Lyman. Later that night it came down the mountain and people in camp saw it.

    Monte

  11. #11
    FM
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    Don't go riding near the zoo, either!


    Quote Originally Posted by Monte
    I was almost hit by a tree this summer. I had to stop riding and backup on the trail or I would have had my clock cleaned, so to speak.

    You can speak of statistics till the cows come home. But a cat doing things that are not normal, i.e. stalking humans on horses, pretty much tosses that cat out of the statistical group. If the cat keeps stalking people it would seem that it's not behaving normally. "A cat sees you a hundred times before you see it", which is fine. It can watch all it wants, from a distance. Just don't become interested in me, or others on the trail. I saw a cougar while riding last year near Lyman. Later that night it came down the mountain and people in camp saw it.

    Monte

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    A teeny weeny and a big pu**y

    [See me roar. Me so manly.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monte
    I was almost hit by a tree this summer. I had to stop riding and backup on the trail or I would have had my clock cleaned, so to speak.

    You can speak of statistics till the cows come home. But a cat doing things that are not normal, i.e. stalking humans on horses, pretty much tosses that cat out of the statistical group. If the cat keeps stalking people it would seem that it's not behaving normally. "A cat sees you a hundred times before you see it", which is fine. It can watch all it wants, from a distance. Just don't become interested in me, or others on the trail. I saw a cougar while riding last year near Lyman. Later that night it came down the mountain and people in camp saw it.

    Monte
    Dude,
    Did you actually READ THE ARTICLE in the newspaper that started this stupid thread that I'm too stupid to put down? The cat was not stalking. It was attempting to hide behind a small bush as it was taken unawares. The two dumb women on horses ADMITTED, in YOUR cited article, that THEY made the error in response to their sighting (and cougars are not capable of invisibility; they can be seen) by freaking out and galloping off. Cats chase things that run from them: it's instinctual. When the women on horses stopped retreating, the cat stopped and retreated, itself. Got it?
    I thought we mountain bikers cherished wildness. I thought we were brave embracers of the qualities of our natural world, not softy couch potato spectators afraid of reality.
    I'm disappointed.
    This is my final statement on this.

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    We saw a bear down south here on a ride about 3 weeks ago, was decent sized, right in the middle of the road near the end of our ride about 9:30am. one look at us on our bikes and he hauled ass outa there.. just to not really press the issue we stopped well short of where we had seen him and gave him a couple minutes to clear out rather than us riding up right on were he was.. NOTHING worse than an animal that feels frightened or cornered..

    Cow bells are a great idea for riding, especially in areas that we share with motorcycles or horses. Horses spook fairly easy and out bikes are pretty quiet, coming flying around a corner at 15mph and that rider is gonna have serious problems...
    '93 DB Ascent HT, Manitou front shock, XT Der's, SRT500's, SS7 with 987's
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  15. #15
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    Check out the pic of the kitty taken legally by a hunter up Taneum Creek not long ago--they're out there! Though most aren't 200 pounds like this beast. Don't forget to keep an eye on your backside..............
    It was reported to me that cat was taken in the middle fork of the Snoqualmie. Can anyone confirm the exact location where this cat was taken?

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    If eating meat is so bad then why does it taste so good?

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