I thought I saw a Puddy Tat Bobcat along Lacamas Heritage Trail - I did, I did, did!
I felt just like Tweety Bird today when I spotted a big cat on the trail ahead of me during a run. My dog Mac, had been pulling on his leash and sniffing frantically at the brush when the cat suddenly came into view. It had a short-bob tail, long hind legs and tufted ears.
Naturally, I was a bit startled, and once it ran off the trail and out of view, I started doubting my eyes. "I thought I saw a Puddy Tat Bobcat." But, did I? Do bobcats live around here? Do they roam about during the daylight hours?
I've been running on Lacamas Heritage Trail year round for about five years. In that time, I've seen deer, rabbits, and a variety of water fowl and critters - but never a bobcat. Furthermore, they're not listed with the other area wildlife on trail information boards.
Fortunately, when I got back to the parking lot, a Camas Parks employee was performing maintenance. When I told her that I thought I saw a Puddy Tat Bobcat along the trail (Mile 1 & 1/4 from the Goodwin Road Trailhead), she smiled and nodded - according to her, I did, I did, I did!
"Sure," she said enthusiastically, " you bet there are bobcats around here, bummer you didn't have a camera." Argh - no kidding. Apparently, it's quite unusual to see one. That's due in part to their elusive nature and caution around humans. However, during winter months, you have a better chance to spot one because their prey is more active during the day.
Once I got back home, it didn't take long to "Google" bobcat sightings at Lacamas Lake. Sure enough in 2007, the Lacamas Shores neighborhood HOA issued a warning to its residents. That summer, several homeowners reported seeing a bobcat on their property. Folks were advised to keep cats and small pets indoors until the wild cat moved on.
There aren't any other Internet reports of bobcat sightings along the Lacamas Heritage Trail. Therefore, it really is a shame that I didn't have a camera, or my iPhone, in the pocket of my running jacket. Although, as fast as it happened, I'm not sure I would have been able to get a shot - especially with Mac pulling on the leash with curiosity.
It sure has made for an interesting morning and a fun subject to explore. Yes, the winter months in the Camas area certainly bring some unexpected delights from nature. The next time, "I thought I saw a Puddy Tat Bobcat on Lacamas Heritage Trail", I'll know for certain, I did, did, did!
Lacamas Shores is a great neighborhood along the Lacamas Heritage Trail - if you're interested in looking for a home in this wonderful outdoor setting, I'd love to be your guide. Let's explore your options.
Here's a short video about the neighborhood.