Campers parked on B.C. highway surprised by cougar

Video shows animal slowly approaching vehicle until engine starts

Campers caught footage of a cougar approaching their car in the forests of Vancouver Island recently.

They were about 75 km southwest of Campbell River on Highway 28 when the encounter took place, said Oren Hanscomb, who was among the campers.

They had pulled over on the soft shoulder of the highway when the cougar “poked its head over the ledge,” said Hanscomb in an email.

They rolled up the windows of the vehicle as the animal slowly advanced. The video shows it approaching the car until Hanscomb starts the engine.

“I turned my Jeep on just to make sure it stayed away, which worked,” he said. “Then soon after we just left.”

The sighting took place on July 6.

People who encounter wildlife like cougars on the road are advised to stay in their vehicle, and to consider not stopping. This keeps them from becoming accustomed to people.

Provincial conservation authorities advise anyone who encounters a cougar to stay calm, keep the animal in view and pick up any children immediately. The noise and movements of frightened children could startle the animal, provoking an attack. Then back away slowly, making sure the cougar has a way to escape.

People who encounter a cougar are also advised to make themselves seem as large as possible. Never turn your back on a cougar, and never run from it.

If followed by a cougar, respond with aggression: show your teeth, maintain eye contact and make loud noises. Grab rocks or sticks to arm yourself.

And fight back if the cougar attacks, striking at its face and eyes, and using anything available as a weapon.

If a cougar poses an immediate threat to public safety, call the Conservation Office’s hotline: 1-877-952-7277.

More information about cougars and other wild animals can be found at the BC Conservation Foundation’s WildSafeBC website and the provincial government’s “Staying Safe Around Wildlife” website.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tourism Golden re-launches “Locals Lowdown” campaign

The campaign seeks to give a face and personality to Golden to encourage tourism.

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Golden police seek Good Samaritan after house fire

An unidentified individual may have saved lives in the early-morning fire.

Snow expected to hit West Kootenay passes overnight on Thursday

Up to 15 cm of snow could fall on Highway 3 between Paulson summit to Kootenay Pass by Friday morning

2020 construction projects planned for Mount Revelstoke and Glacier National Park

Parks Canada said they are continuing to improve Highway 1 over Rogers Pass

Kelowna man charged with harming a hamster

The 20-year-old Kelowna man faces several animal cruelty charges

High tech fish transport system set up to ‘whoosh’ salmon past Big Bar landslide

Fish will spend roughly 20 seconds inside the system, moving at roughly 20 metres per second

Trudeau to seek 10 days of paid sick leave for Canadian workers, says talks are ongoing

Paid sick leave is key to keeping COVID-19 spread under control, prime minister says

Snowbirds jets will not be leaving Kamloops, just yet

The Snowbirds have been in Kamloops since May 17 when a plane crashed killing Capt. Jennifer Casey

COVID-19 checkpoints ‘up to them,’ Bonnie Henry says of remote B.C. villages

Support local tourism economy, but only if you’re invited in

Vancouver Island hasn’t seen a new homegrown case of COVID-19 in two weeks

Island’s low and steady transmission rate chalked up to several factors

Eight people arrested in Victoria homeless camp after enforcement order issued

Those living in tents were given until May 20 to move indoors

Andrew Weaver says he was ready to defeat John Horgan government

Independent MLA blasts B.C. Greens over LNG opposition

Most Read