As I began my hike at the start of Will Rogers State Park, a young woman came running out of the woods, “Oh My God, there’s a mountain lion in there!” She had turned around after seeing the mountain lion in her first 5 minutes on the trail.
I eased her fear a bit and said that if she wanted to join me on the hike, she could hike with me and I would protect her.
I have come face to face with a Mountain Lion before. I was riding my mountain bike up a trail and as I turned onto the adjoining trail, I saw her run across into the bushes.
I marked the spot with my eyes and as I got closer, I looked into the bushes and her big green eyes looked back at mine.
As we made eye contact, she shrunk back a bit. I began talking to her… “I see you. I’m not afraid of you. You’re fine.”
The fact is, I wasn’t afraid. I was absolutely thrilled to be in the presence of such a wild animal. However, as I continued pedaling, the trail started accelerating downhill. That’s a big no no, going fast since they like to chase. All was well, I kept looking over my shoulder and she stayed back. They are more afraid of us than we know.
So, on this day as Samantha and I made our way toward our destination 2.5 miles ahead, I explained what you should do if you come upon a mountain lion–it isn’t what I did in my face to face encounter but this is what YOU should do.
The first rule is, DON’T RUN!
Puma’s are a bit like men, they love the chase.
If you run, they chase–that’s just their instinct. The second rule is, talk loud and sound mean and stand as tall as you can possibly stand. They are afraid of you if you carry yourself with a confidence and a knowing that All is Well. They can smell fear and vulnerability from a mile away.
In Sam’s case, the Puma ran first, at which point Sam ran the other way. Luckily, the Puma was scared first. They are usually more afraid of us than we are of them.
Even though I felt like being calm and quiet because of the serene environment, I was TALKING VERY LOUDLY for the sake of the potential Puma lurking in the bushes! It was necessary to put Sam and I at ease and make sure that I followed my own advice.
The hike turned into one of the most magical days for both of us.
We talked about everything–moving to L A, love, law of attraction, life’s purpose, goals, dreams, relationships…
I was happy to have her company because I am a Trail Guide by nature and I love to interact with the people I hike with. I had a hike scheduled that day but the client cancelled.
I had intended on driving all the way to Malibu, but something in me said, “turn” as I approached Will Rogers Historic State Park off Sunset Blvd.
And so, I turned! I’m sure I was supposed to meet Sam today.
We were able to enhance each other in various ways and it made for a measurable, magical morning. I am grateful. I’ve heard it said at The Agape International Spiritual Center, “I am an answered prayer.”
Perhaps I was the answered prayer for Sam today, otherwise, she would have abandoned the hike within the first 5 minutes. Sam was there for me so that I could share my beloved trails with somebody who had a strong desire to be there.
The Mountain Lion was there to bring Sam a message.
As Ted Andrews, the author of “Animal Speak” says in his book, when we are out in the wild, the animals we encounter are there to bring us a message… “when Cougar (Puma/Mountain Lion) shows up as a totem for you, it is a message to come into your own power. People may not like your asserting and may want to keep you in the category they have always kept you in. The Cougar teaches you how to take charge of your life and your circumstances most effectively.”
So many lessons are out on the trails of our lives, we just have to be willing.
As Dr. Wayne Dyer says:
“Miracles come in moments. Be ready and willing.”
So many magical moments on that 3 hour hike… Synchronicity is the one word I will use to describe it. I will leave it at that and urge you out into the wild. You never know what, or who, you’ll encounter out there, but you have to be willing to get yourself out in it and be open to learn the lessons as they appear! There are so many lessons in NATURE!