Wednesday, May 23, 2012

One of the Local Mountain Lion's Doings

On May 15, I saw a Mountain Lion cross Engineers Road in front of my car at 9:30 pm, moving from the right side of the road to the left side as I approached Cuyamaca Woods from Cuyamaca Lake. I was within a couple hundred yards of the sign for Cuyamaca Woods at that point.

Cuyamaca Woods residents Terri and John Groth recently observed some signs that seem typical of a Mountain Lion's activities near their home on Grandview Way and further down the road, not far from where it connects to Engineers Road.

Closer to Engineers Road is an area with a lot of wood chips scattered about. There were areas scratched up in the chips, and one such spot contained some very impressive scat, suggestive of a large carnivore.

More compelling, closer to their house, was the remains of a deer, partially eaten and with one fore limb removed and lying to the side. Their photos of this evidence are shown below.

These locations are very close to where I saw my lion the other night, according to Google Maps.

Fairly good evidence that this cat has a home range incorporating this area.

Mule Deer, Angle One. Photo courtesy of Terri Groth.

Mule Deer, Angle Two. Photo courtesy of Terri Groth.

Scat in scrape. Members of the cat family which are advertising their presence in a territory generally do not bury their scat (as this animal demonstrates). Photo courtesy of Terri Groth.
The Groths will try to capture film evidence with a motion-activated camera in the days/weeks to come.


  1. Happy to have found your blog. I have actually written much lately about the Cuyamaca State Park, especially with regards the forest restoration. You stated you moved there in 2005, but did you ever have opportunity to see it before the 2003 Cedar Fire ?

    Thanks again and I'll be back soon. Today we have a party of sorts to go to. I live away from there now and reside in Sweden, but hope to come back. Originally from El Cajon, but live 24 years north of you in Anza Valley near Idyllwild.

    Cheers , Kevin

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    1. Hi Kevin,

      Thanks for visiting and commenting on my blog. I plan to update it a bit more frequently now we are almost in summer, and I have some more time off.

      I had seen the Cuyamacas many times before the fire, and even spent overnight in Cuyamaca Woods in 1980, and remember being very impressed by the beauty of the region (having just moving here form the east coast).

      It certainly has changed since the fire, but is looking better every year, now at least.