Portland/ Parks & Nature
AI Assisted Icon
Published on June 20, 2024
Angel’s Rest Trail Set to Reopen in Columbia River Gorge After Cougar Stalking IncidentSource: Google Street View

Angel's Rest trail, known for its sweeping views of the Columbia River Gorge, is scheduled for a comeback this week, after a brief shutdown sparked by a cougar stalking a runner, reports say. According to KATU, the ominous encounter prompted the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to close the trail last Tuesday, this being the latest of several recent cougar-spotted instances in the area.

The trail's temporary closure served as a tension break, giving the territorial feline adequate time to move on and ease off the trail. It is a move deemed necessary by wildlife officials and law enforcement alike Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wildlife Services, and Oregon State Police converged on the scene following the incident, which has not been followed by any other sightings as KOIN details. It seems the elusive cougar has given rangers and regular joggers alike a well-needed respite, with no additional twist to the tale since the original event.

June 11 marked the day when the stakes got real—with a hiker's brush with the cougar prompting the closure, a fact underscored by a prior sighting near Cook Hill Loop on June 6 lending credence to a pattern of behavior. The anticipated reopening this Thursday should mark eight days since the last reported encounter, as suggested by reports from the Skamania County Communications Center and relayed by KGW 8.

While adventurers are raring to trek the scenic route once again, warning signs still pepper the landscape—all pointing to the possibility of another big cat meet-and-greet. Therefore, if one does stumble upon a cougar or mountain lion on any given trail, remember the advice dispensed by the U.S. Forest Service: stand your ground do not run, lock eyes to establish dominance, inflate your physical presence, avoid crouching, and employ noise-making tactics without restraint, being proactive could mean the difference between a memorable hike and a harrowing escape. For any lingering doubts, the U.S. Forest Service remains on standby at 541-308-1700 to address questions or concerns and ensure that your jaunt through Angel's Rest is as secure as it is breathtaking.