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Hunting Mountain Lion w/o Dogs

Discussion in 'General Rifle' started by RiverRatMatt, May 24, 2011.

  1. RiverRatMatt

    RiverRatMatt G&G Newbie

    In the area I hunt, the season for Mountain Lion lasts from Aug. 30 to March 31st this year.
    I'm not a fan of hunting with dogs, and even if I wanted to I don't have any [​IMG]

    So does anyone have any tips for hunting big cats in a scrub desert area?

    My plan is to spend some time watching in the evenings, to see if I can spot where and when they are moving, then during the season I should know where I need to be.

    I'm hoping to get a deer, elk, and cougar this year in addition to regular small game hunting, so I'll be a busy man [​IMG]

    Also, while we're on the subject, mountain lions don't have armored carapace in their chest or anything do they?

    A .243 ought to be enough with a chest or neck shot, eh?
  2. Ten Man

    Ten Man G&G Evangelist

    Learn to squeak like a rabbit, crawl like a snake, and hear like a dog.

    They are wily critters, and have a VERY keen sense of smell.

    I would use a bigger caliber, but I am a known proponent of taking more than the minimum amount of gun, when hunting.
    Last edited: May 24, 2011
  3. samuel

    samuel G&G Newbie

    I never hunted ML,couger,puma,without dogs.To do so might require years of hunting and be sucessful only on shots of opertunity.To stalk/stilhunt a mountain would be similar to hunting antelope if there were only 1 or 2 in the whole country.Where dogs were outlawed the lion population quickly increased and reached nuicance/dangerous proportions.(since skilled hunters try to hunt them it just can't be that easy or population wouldn't rise so fast) My opinion is if you go out thinking you are hunting lion,very quickly you find the cat is hunting you.This means almost immediately he/she knows exactly where you are and what you are doing.The reason I compare them to antelope is their extremely effective senses and inteligence in avoiding you.
    Last edited: May 24, 2011
  4. blaster

    blaster G&G Evangelist

    we are over run with lions down here. we see lots of tracks and other sign but it is rare to actually see a cat. they are very wary and smart. unless you could find a fresh kill or used a predator call I doubt you will have much success. they have large home ranges and it would be difficult trying to ambush one.
  5. JustMike

    JustMike G&G Newbie


    I know successful Mtn Lion hunters here in Nevada that use a .223 Rem
    with soft nose ammo. Lions aren't particulary hard to kill at close range.
    A .243 is plenty of gun for Lion. Good Luck.
  6. Palladin8

    Palladin8 G&G Evangelist

    My friend in CO has shot a few now without the use of dogs. He uses a foxpro game caller and sets up decoys. As long as they are in the area they will investigate the the sound of an injured animal. They take longer to go to the sounds than say a coyote or bobcat. As for rifle he either uses his 22-250 or .220 Swift as they are light weight rifles.
  7. sea_chicken1

    sea_chicken1 G&G Evangelist

    Get a rabbit call and work it a few hours before dawn and early in the evening just after dark. Thats when I usually find fresh cat sign. When I have actually come across them in the woods it has been chance. They will almost always see you first witch is a bit unnerving if you have been in that situation. If you see one shoot it by all means weather you have a tag or not. The only good mt lion is a dead one in my book.
    Last edited: May 24, 2011
  8. RiverRatMatt

    RiverRatMatt G&G Newbie

    I believe that's called poaching.
  9. Palladin8

    Palladin8 G&G Evangelist

    That indeed is called poaching and would be ill advised to do.

    I'm not interested in losing my firearms, vehicle, hunting gear, lots of money in fines, and my hunting rights to shoot any game animal out of season.
  10. deadzero

    deadzero G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    If your going to hunt ML without dogs pay close attention to what Sam said in post #3. keep your eyes open and watch all 360 degrees, you wont be at the top of the food chain that day....
  11. hagar

    hagar G&G Newbie

    Don't call alone with a wabbit call, use an electronic caller. I called in a few in AZ, the only one I ever got a shot at, I missed, they are fast as lightning. Called at least 3 or 4 that snuck up on me and either the birds gave them away, or they screamed at me, but never saw them. It is kinda sobering to walk around after the stand and see dinner plate prints 10 yards behind where you were sitting..
  12. notajeep

    notajeep G&G Addict

    Agreed rabbit squeal, however to ensure 99.9% that you'll see something while on your hunt I'd recommend wearing an Easter bunny costume. Not only this way will you sound like a big footed rabbit you can also look yummy. I'd however go back to plan A and take the non rabbit eating bad axx dog along for the hunt. Or better yet take the ol' lady have her wear the rabbit snack costume. Check your state laws, it may be illegal to bait the big cat using live rabbit, or maybe not! May consider plan B that would be to live trap using 50gal barrel live trap with a chicken caged in the forward end. However you may pixx off the cat if you approach the trap in the rabbit costume. Here in Kansas we don't pin up our chickens cause the red necks think if their tethered their fighting cocks. We need more trees in this state to keep the neighbors wondering what were up to. Good Luck
  13. Palladin8

    Palladin8 G&G Evangelist

    fawn in distress works well in the spring and summertime. I had to fortune or misfortune to come within 20-25yds of a big Tom while hunting in UT for Elk.
    I was up in the Uintah mountains all by myself up in an area that wasn't hunted very much. I walk about 200yds through some dense timber and found a clearing that had a well used trail. I had the wind at my face and sat behind a fallen tree to where there was only about half my body exposed. This big Tom come walking down the trail and didn't see or smell me. All I could do was shoulder my rifle and he froze in his tracks for a second or two and then took off like he was shot out of a cannon up into the timber. Well with it getting dark and me needing a clean pair of underwear I decided I needed to head back to the truck. It was the longest walk I think I have ever taken. Every little sound had my head moving like Linda Blair on the Exorcist. The whole time I kept thinking he was going to pounce on me any minute for scarring the chit out of him.
    It has always been one of my biggest fears to be attacked by a Mt Lion. By the time you hear them they are on top of you unlike a bear who will make noise crashing through the brush.
  14. Reinhardt

    Reinhardt G&G Newbie

    If you are wanting to kill a lion, hounds are the surest way to do it. And as far as a 243 goes, that is way more than enough gun, A lion is easy to kill, a 22 mag in the lungs will quickly dispatch a mt. lion. If you ever read the book 'Call of the hounds" by Del Cameron, he was one of the best mt. lion outfitters and guides that ever lived, he lives in Montana, and has killed hundreds of mt. lions including several B&C cats using a 22lr. S&W handgun. He said they were usually dead before they hit the ground.
  15. big shrek

    big shrek G&G Evangelist

    .243 would be smaller than I'd use...I want it DRT, not having to go play Matt Tracker.

    Minimum caliber for predators in NA should be .30, prefferably .30-06/.30-30 or faster/bigger.

    Think about how fast your gun reloads should you miss/not hit vitals...
    then think about what if you DO hit vitals...and it keeps coming anyway.
    Major benefits to lever-action, pump-action, & semi-auto.
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