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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hello,
i live in north carolina, and we are a long way from any real cougar populations, so please forgive me if i ask any goofy questions!

first, does anyone regularly hunt or even see them where you live?

which states/areas would be the most realistic for possibly seeing a few on a trip in november or december?

do you know any of the particulars of a non-resident hunting them in your state?

what kind of firearm do you prefer? i was thinking of a remington 7 in 243 with a low power scope, but am totally open to any suggestions.

any info or just war stories are appreciated!

thank you,
ed
 

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Where I am from in northern Idaho it is infested with Cougars and they come into town at night and kill dogs.Not many people hunt them because they are extremely elusive and rarely ever seen and seldom leave much sighn. They are mostly nocturnal and usualy sleep during the day.In my entire life I have seen five of them. If you are going to travel a lot of miles to see one I would suggest you contact a guide with dogs who can tree you one and be in good shape because you will be convering some rugged terrain.
Most are treed and shot with a 22 magnum. Your 243 is enough and then some, they are not hard to kill like a bear nor nearly as dangerous. They are usualy up high and feed off mule deer but ocasionly come down lower and kill white tails.You have picked a very hard to spot critter and are more than likely going to be disapointed unless you hire a guide chances are so very slim you will see one.
 

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+1 on onenut's excellent advice. :)

You can wander around in mountain lion country for years and never even catch a glimpse of one. Sometimes (very rarely), they are called in by predator hunters looking for coyotes, but your best bet is an outfitter with lion dogs. A good outfitter will know where they've been spotted lately or areas where they've been killing livestock - which greatly increases your odds of success. I would start by talking to ones who have camps in the Rocky Mountain states. They can quickly tell you about the costs, odds of success, and the likelihood of getting an out-of-state license.

I've never tried it, but Teddy Roosevelt was a big fan of mountain lion hunting. He said it was the most rigorous type of hunting he ever tried - even after his trips to Africa and South America.

xtm
 

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ODFW current estimate on Oregons lion population: 6000.
I hike a lot and I have seen exactly 3 in my life .. all in Idaho.
Most that are taken are taken while out hunting deer, etc and an opportunity presents itself. Alternately game cameras will sometimes pick them up and then hunters will purposefully target them.
 

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Alot of guys, that I used to know, liked to **** hunt in the Berksires. They used dogs to tree the *****, then popped 'em with a .22 pistol. The idea was to not make a lot of noise, but to get the job done. That's fine for the smaller critters.......but a mountain lion????? :eek:

I'd use a .38 snubby revolver, or something similar, to make sure the "kitty" is dead .......when it hits the ground!!!!! ;) Bob
 

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A number of years ago I was in a group of hunters watching some gerat hunting movies. It went through a number of different types of hunts from African Safaries to Deer, elk, goat in the US. We were all really enjoying the films and then--- and then there was a mountain lion hunt with dogs, the dogs treed the cat and it was shot out of the tree with a revolver. The BOOs from about half the audience were so loud the film was stopped and the producer tried to explain that that was how mountain Lion hunting was done in the western part of the country. A lot of these eastern hunters in there did not feel that it was a Sportsman way of hunting. Of course none of them had lost cows, or horses, or sheep to the mountain lion.
 

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Here in Eugene Oregon we have had a big problem with them. They have been seen out side of grade schools. Ever since they stopped hunting them with dogs the problem has gotten out of hand.
 

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The same ones that were booing the cougar getting shot out of tree are the same ones that will fly out west and pay a guide to lead them by the hand into the woods and point them at a Elk.
They have no concept of the time and knowledge it takes a guide to find the herd and pick out the bulls for the horn hunters. They take there shot and run up and get a pick taken then go back home and brag how they hunted the elk and pay a taxidermist to mount it and will point it out as proof of there hunting skill.
The truth is they have no idea what went into hunting the elk they shot and never will.
The very same types are the ones who outlawed hunting cougars with dogs in Oregon and that is why they have twice as many Cougars in Oregon than the other western states and there elk and deer herds are being reduced at a alarming rate.If it continues hunting in Oregon will eventualy be a thing of the past.
 

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North Idaho.... We certainly have Cougars up here!

I had a home built 4 years ago and there were Cougar tracks all over the property for the first couple of weeks after starting the development. Haven't seen any since.
My neighborhood constantly has small pets disappear at night without a trace, from within their fenced yards.

One of my co-workers has a beautiful area rug made from the cougar that attacked him and killed his dog. He shot the cougar during the attack on his dog.

2 years ago, 2 young girls out for a walk at the lakes edge here in Spirit Lake, ID were chased into the water by a cougar. The spent nearly an hour waist deep in the cold lake until somebody drove by, saw them and get them safely out of the water.

I met a rancher 20 miles north of Coeur d'Alene that had his horse attacked in it's corral. the horse survived but was pretty badly cut up. 3 days later the cougar was hanging on the corral gate.

Hunting cougars up her is allowed and the cougar tag for residents is only 8 or 10 bucks extra, on top of your regular hunting license.

Out of state hunters can buy tags as well. Fish & Game does not specifically post cougar hunt data so the hunt is better with a skilled guide if you come in from out of the area.
You can get license fee info for Idaho hunting here: www.fishandgame.idaho.gov
and some cougar hunt info here: www.huntingidaho.com

I hope this helps.
 

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Pierce and onenut,
You guys are exactly right.
Pierce, we have mountian lions in the suburbs on the edge of town here too. One made the papers every day for a week last month. Nearest regular ML sighting to my house? 1.7 miles. Nearest bobcat sighting that I know of.. 3 miles. Lots of critters out there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
thanks for the info! my job usually eases up in late november, and i have been hoping to take an open-ended trip out west in the next couple of years. it looks like idaho is definitely the best bet to possibly see one, but i have some family in oregon that i had planned on staying with for a few days. that might be my best opportunity. i have even given some thought to arizona or other farther south location. i will keep researching!
 

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The brilliant minds in California decided several years back that we could not hunt them anymore. Now they are in town. Having no predators besides man there is an overabundance of them.
 

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I've got two lion mounts on my walls --- both taken by calling them with a predator call, in AZ. Friends and members of my predator calling club have taken many others with the same technique. It is challenging, and thrilling, but a long-odds proposition, and I wouldn't recommend the technique for anyone who didn't have a lot of time on their hands, and lots of local knowledge of back roads, terrain, and habitat. I spend a lot of time in excellent lion habitat, but have only seen three that hadn't been called, even though they're fairly abundant --- they're just reclusive, and stealthy, and roam very large territories where the odds of being in the same place and time as a lion are very slim.

A .243 is enough gun --- I wouldn't recommend much less --- I once lost a lion I shot with a .223, and one on my wall took several .30 cal. rounds to extinguish all nine lives. It's true that treed or bayed lions are often shot with the likes of a .22 Mag, but this is usually a short-range, fish-in-a-barrel assasination, different than trying to down an animal that's not a sitting duck, to mix metaphors.

Surest bet is to hire a guide with hounds. Non-resident AZ license and lion tag costs almost $400, pretty steep ante for a DIY hunt...
 
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