Caution is being urged by the B.C Conservation service for anyone walking or biking in Whistler, due to the sighting of cougars on Valley Trail.
A cyclist saw the cougar around 9pm on the north area near Creekside, and the cougar followed her for a while on the trail before she was able to scare it away. She was frightened but stayed as calm as she could in order to make the right moves to get away from it.
Inspector Chris Doyle said that the cyclist took all the proper precautions during her unnerving encounter by putting her bicycle between herself and the wild cat to make herself look threatening and more imposing and made sure not to have any contact with it.
The cougar still hasn’t been found and no one else has encountered it, but signs were put up along the trail by municipal officers to warn of the danger.
It is not something to take lightly, when a cougar and a person come across each other. You never know if the cat is intentionally following or not. Everyone needs to realize and stay aware that cougars are out there and to respect that fact in order to stay safe.
It’s not just cougars that may be along these trails though, there are also bears moving around the area of the trails and on them, especially at night. It’s wise not to go alone on the trails at night. Go in pairs or in groups and make noise to ward them from coming around you.
There are cougars who are definitely in residence in the area of Whistler, but no one knows how many there are of them, but it’s a healthy population, no doubt.
Over the years, there have been conflicts between cougar and human and using the utmost caution when entering a territory where they reside is the wisest way to go. Whistler is a beautiful area for us to enjoy, but there are a lot of wild animals that enjoy it too. Stay safe.