Hiker comes face-to-face with mountain lion in Utah

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A young man was enjoying a hike in the Utah mountains, when came across what he first thought to be some cute bobcat kittens. Unfortunately, he soon learned that wasn’t the case. Instead he got the most terrifying experience ever.

“I found what I thought were bobcats on the trail during a run,” the 26-year-old hiker wrote on YouTube. “Turns out they were cougar cubs and their mother was not happy to see me.”

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Kyle Burgess went for a trail run at Slate Canyon, when spotted the kittens. But he soon realized they were not bobcats how he initially thought, but mountain cougars. It was too late, though, because within seconds he found himself face-to-face with their extremely irritated mother. What followed next was the most scary encounter he ever had. For roughly six endless minutes, the young man was stalked by the angry cougar mother.

In a now viral video, captured by the man himself, he can be seen backing away very very slow with the wild cat in front of him. Burgess managed to keep his calm in an incredible manner and he never turned his back to the beast, which eventually saved his life.

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“I didn’t really know what kind of cubs they were or what animal they were,” the hiker told Fox13. “Once I did realise what they were, I was like, ‘That’s mom right there. I’m screwed.'”

Along his way down the path, the man can be heard shouting at the animal for several time, trying to intimidate her in this way. But as it turned out, it quite hard to intimidate a wild animal who protecting its babies.

“Dude, you’re scary,” Burgess yells at the cougar. “You’re so…scary kitty cat. Come on dude, I don’t feel like dying today.”

TMX News

After several highly intense minutes, the young man grabs a piece of rock and throws it into the cougar’s direction, and to his surprise she runs away. He can’t believe his eyes, when he sees the wild animal walking away. “Wow, that just happened,” he can be heard. “I’m somewhat calm actually. Yeah, not going back that way.”

Fortunately, the hiker miraculously survived, but he’s the one that takes all the credit for it, because he did exactly what he had to do in a delicate situation like this.

“In that situation, with that mother mountain lion who’s being very protective, as you can tell, I would not take my eyes off of her and I wouldn’t bend down,” said. Scott Root with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. “You want to remain large and you want to remain making a lot of noise. And that’s what he did.”

Watch the heart-thumping moment here:

According to wildlife officials, whenever encounter a wild cougar, or a big wild cat, you should always to these things. It could save your life:

-Stop. Never run from a cougar and do not approach the cougar
-Maintain eye contact with the animal
-Stand up tall
-Do not crouch or squat
-Make yourself look bigger by raising and waving your arms or jacket above your head
-Talk firmly in a loud voice, back away slowly, and leave the area
-Pick up children and pets or keep them very close
-Fight back if you are attacked! Protect your head and neck.

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