Video captured by Campbell River resident Tracy Bruce shows a cougar overhead at Lost Lake on July 20, 2019.

VIDEO: B.C. woman captures up-close encounter with cougar in a tree

Big cat was in a tree overhead when barking dogs alerted Tracy Bruce

A Vancouver Island woman says she’s still feeling the rush after a very close encounter with a cougar recently.

Tracy Bruce was hiking on Saturday evening with her two rescue dogs at Lost Lake, northwest of Campbell River, when the incident took place.

She was squatting down by the water to capture video of some ducks swimming by when her dogs started barking.

Suddenly she realized what they were barking at: a cougar in a tree above her head.

VIDEO: Local man rescues dog from cougars near Campbell River

READ MORE: Mother hailed as hero in Vancouver Island cougar attack

READ MORE: Cougar on Island might have been shot with bow-and-arrow

“It was five feet from me on the first branch,” Bruce said.

She recalled a surge of emotions, including panic, her mind racing as she assessed the situation. The trail was narrow, and the terrain was steep.

“We had very limited options in that moment,” she said.

The barking of her dogs apparently caused the cougar to leap higher up into the tree. She managed to capture a 23-second video and some photos of the animal before slipping away.

Lost Lake is located northwest of Campbell River on Vancouver Island. Image from Google Maps

“We backed away… I was continuing to make myself big and face the cat, and make the escape,” Bruce said. “I had read many times that you never turn your back on a cat.”

She said the encounter was amazing, and she felt “very grateful for having the opportunity to experience that in a positive way.”

“There was no harm, no foul, it was just an amazing opportunity that had a really happy ending,” she said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

New MP Taylor Bachrach makes his first trip to Bella Coola

Bachrach said he is keen to get to know his riding and the members of his constituency

Bachrach rejects calls for police action against demonstrators

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP says only way out of crisis is “true nation-to-nation” talks

Nuxalk Nation celebrates first carpentry graduates

11 students graduated from the community’s first carpentry program

Bella Coola leave their mark on All Native Basketball Tournament as they reach Intermediate final

Nuxalk Braves bring home a strong second place finish; three individual awards for Marlon Edgar-Apps

All Native Basketball: Finals matchups start to take shape as title games approach

Two Prince Rupert sides in contention, while two dynasties are on the brink

VIDEO: Wet’suwet’en supporters vow to keep protesting at B.C. legislature

Supporters say they will continue ongoing action to hold government accountable

VIDEO: Province promotes ‘lifting each other up’ on 13th annual Pink Shirt Day

Students, MLAs, community members gathered at B.C. Parliament Buildings Wednesday

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

About 81,000 people around the world have now become ill with COVID-19

B.C. residents in Wet’suwet’en territory have right to police presence: Public Safety Minister

Nevertheless, Bill Blair said officials remain ‘very anxious’ for the barricades to come down

Winnipeg police investigating graffiti on RCMP and other buildings

Manitoba Justice Minister Cliff Cullen denounced the vandalism

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

Trucking company fined $175K for Kootenay creek fuel spill

Decision handed down last Friday in Nelson court

B.C. city rebrands with new logo, cheeky slogan

‘Langford, where it all happens’ is the City’s new slogan

B.C. Liberals call for ban on foreign funds to pipeline protesters

Sierra Club, Wilderness Committee back Coastal GasLink blockades

Most Read