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

Two new COVID-19 cases announced in Interior Health region

The total number of cases in the region is at 533

Controversy in Spences Bridge over fate of EV charging station

Community members upset over request that BC Hydro meet demands or remove station

Argument abounds at contentious Cache Creek council meeting

Coun. Pittman stripped of deputy mayor appointment following heated exchange

Village of Ashcroft receives award at 2020 UBCM conference

Ashcroft recognized for Excellence in Asset Management for homegrown program

CP Holiday Train will not be pulling into communities this year

Virtual event will take its place, but donations to local food banks will go ahead as usual

B.C. counts 125 new COVID-19 cases, up to 1,284 active

No new deaths or health care facility outbreaks

Health Canada green-lights rapid COVID-19 test

Health Canada approved the BCube test from Hyris Ltd. in the United Kingdom Sept. 23

6 puppies rescued in mass seizure on Princeton farm die from illness: BC SPCA

Of the 97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized, most of the puppies suffered from parvo

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Action demanded over death of First Nations youth in Abbotsford group home

Family and Indigenous organizations push for thorough investigation

U.S. boater fined $1,000 for violation of Quarantine Act

49-year-old man entered Canada to visit girlfriend in Surrey

More sex abuse charges laid against B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’

Investigators now focussing efforts on alleged victims within the Glad Tidings Church community

B.C. VOTES 2020: Businesses now owe $6 billion in deferred tax payments

COVID-19 relief from remittance to province ends with September

VIDEO: Smithers friendship centre launches canoe to mark Orange Shirt Day

Residential School survivor feels honoured by events held to recognize hardships endured

Most Read