No more solo rides in the evenings!

We have a new trail in Idyllwild called cat kill trail – there’s a reason. Some of the local bikers found parts of a dead deer on it. I think we have proof now. We’ve seen lots of tracks out there that look like a big cat and they are usually right along deer tracks.

Most of the tracks are down low near the creeks. When we ride down there I get this feeling that makes the hair stand up on my neck. We usually find some extra energy to speed up a little in that area.

So, i looked up tracks online and compared them to the pics that I got with my camera phone – looks like a good match to me. A couple of days ago, I watched a big cat walk across a field – actually down near the ranger station between here and Hemet. He sat down and watched me ride slowly up the highway. It was about 4pm, so I decided to turn around and head back to the ranger station and call Brendan for a ride. I didn’t want to be anyone’s snack. He might have actually been a bobcat since he wasn’t too big, but he sat down before i could see his tail. I wasn’t going to risk it and besides, if it was time for him to look for dinner, it was surely time for all of his friends to go out as well.

So, here are the pics that I found at the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department as well as the ones I took with my camera phone. The coin purse that we put down to compare size is exactly 3 inches long. As you will see by the examples online, that’s a bit big to be a bobcat and just right for a mountain lion.

Please be careful out there if you do go out to ride! I’m going to try to stick to mid-day if I ride solo or the trainer in the evenings.

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12 Comments Add yours

  1. Allison says:

    Hey Mary, where between Idy/Hemet? We ride Rouse mountain and I think I’ve seen prints there as well.

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  2. Mary Collier says:

    The tracks that I took photos of were between Hurkey Creek and Idyllwild. But I’ve seen the ones you’re talking about on Rouse Ridge and they look the same to me.

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  3. Lucas says:

    Wow! I have ran into bobcats multiple times in my area. Usually they are tagged and run off when they see you! Mountain Lion tracks though!! That is definately scary! What did the ranger have to say?

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  4. SSIDYLLWILD says:

    I’ve been rolling the dice in the area lately. I’m just a sucka for the trails in the area and have a hard time with all the live trees that were cut down in Isomata. If you need a partner for May Valley I’m always up for chasing you up the climbs.

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  5. Mary Collier says:

    The ranger agreed with me that they’re out there (in May Valley that is) and also said he knows there’s one lurking around the Cranston Ranger Station.

    We also have a friend that does wildlife control stuff around here and he said to be careful out there cause many people have found cat kill remains of deer etc.

    Thanks Dave. I’m too freaked out to go out alone anymore. Weekends for sure. You ready for Temecula?

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  6. Brendan says:

    Soo… dragging a steak behind your bike as a distraction is out of the question? 😉

    Oh, and the answer what might be an obvious question- I’m not riding that much lately… certainly not as long as Mary’s been riding, so I can’t go out on every ride, not by a long shot. These days my idea of a good ride is 2 hours of techy gnar in May Valley, then limp home & collapse into mush.

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  7. Dave says:

    My rule of thumb for Lion track is that they’re at least a bit wider than they are long. I think you got one. In addition, and lamentably, you’re about the size lion’s have historically favored amongst adults.

    Happy b-day Brendan!

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  8. Mary Collier says:

    Yeah, I know. I look like a tasty taquito – perfect size for a light snack!

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  9. Jeff Kerkove says:

    Here kitty, kitty, kitty.

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  10. Namrita O'Dea says:

    wow!!! scary!!! cool, at the same time, but still scary. be careful!

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  11. Namrita O'Dea says:

    wow!!! scary!!! cool, at the same time, but still scary. be careful!

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  12. Matt says:

    Hey Mary –

    We’ve got them here in Albuquerque too. A few years back 3 cubs came on down and played in our front yard. Later we’d see the markings on the trails, and one night I had a run in with a cat. Big green nasty eyes just staring me and my lights the whole time. Sort of changed my riding habits too.

    When I night ride and I see deer that usually means get the hell out of here! Cats are always following the herds…

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