Sorry guys, here is the story. I was hunting with a friend and his three hounds. We are hunting north central Idaho and had been out a few times before. Our weather has been so screwed up this year, the hunting has been tough. We have only 12-16 inches of snow in places that should have a few feet this time of year. This particular morning happened to have a heavy mist to light rain falling. We had traveled about 10 miles from the truck on snowmobiles and found the first cougar tracks. The rain made it difficult to age them. The best dog found little scent left in them and was having a hard time keeping interested in the trail. I continued on and found another set of tracks about 5 miles later. I could see where this cat came off a steep embankment that had no snow on it and was just muddy. The tracks in the snow were well defined and still had mud in them, so I knew they were just minutes old. I got my buddy up there with the dogs and put the best dog on it. He went nuts right away so we turned loose the other two dogs. Soon they were out of sight going down the mountain. After a bit we could hear them coming back up the draw. We ran back in our sled tracks hoping to see the cat cross the trail. Instead, what we saw was a 1 1/2" tree limb falling from a large pine right next to the trail. We looked the tree over top to bottom but could not see the cat. Then we spotted him in another tree that was a good 20 feet away. The dogs were caught up by this time. So we tied them up and snapped a couple pics before I made my shot with my 357 magnum revolver. He jumped out of the tree and only covered about 50 yards before giving up the ghost. His pelt is 7' 8" from tip of his nose to tip of his tail. My shot had hit one lung and passed through with minimal pelt damage. Bullet was a Remington 158 gr. JSP at 1100 fps. It was a great expierence I will not soon forget.
Ted. YOU ARE DA MAN!! Sounds like an exciting hunt to say the least. If you have some more pictures of the cat we would all like to see them. That was an excellent shot with the pistol. You are to be commended. I would have emptied the thing when he left the tree with steam left, but i empty the thing on non dangerous game also. I guess I just like to shoot more than I dislike holes.
Great job. I envy your experience and admire your obvious woodsmanship.
The elk and deer up here have not really had to move down into their normal winter ranges, no need to because of lack of snow. I'd say they are having an easy winter so far. There is a lot of wolf evidence around where we have been hunting also. Seems to be a lot more of them dang dogs around than they say there is. I did some elk hunting around Garden Valley a couple years ago. Looks like you should have some cats in that country. Good luck finding the big boy!
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