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travel
by @erikegan1
Mountain lion feeding on carcass thrills wildlife viewersJACKSON, Wyo. (AP) - Photo safari trip leader Brent Paull's game plan one day this month happily went out the window. A traveling wildlife guide from Tulare, California, Paull had just wrapped up leading three West Coast photographers on a three-day Yellowstone National Park tour. The group rolled into Jackson in the late afternoon to round out their week in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, pulling in around 4:15 p.m to the parking lot of the Super 8 Hotel. Greeting the bunch was "a line of 150 photographers" immediately across Highway 89. Naturally, they moseyed over with their cameras to see what was up. "We haven't actually checked in yet," Paull said. "We just got out of the car and walked across the street." Even as sunlight faded, there was no mistaking the critter centered in the viewfinder of Paull's long-lensed camera, mounted on a tripod on the sidewalk next to the Maverik convenience store. In the frame was a mountain lion, tucked into the base of a juniper tree on High School Butte. Social media had already tipped Paull and his clients off to a cougar visible somewhere in the Jackson area, but they had no idea the big feline was sticking tight to the slopes just across the street from their hotel. The close encounter thrilled Springfield, Oregon resident Jim Woodward - one of Paull's clients. "This is my first cougar," Woodward said. "It's amazing. We just drive in here to the motel, and there's a cougar on the hillside. Well, that's convenient." For almost a week the buzz around Jackson has been about a mountain lion drawn down to the base of the butte towering above town and staying put to dine on a mule deer carcass stashed by a rock retaining wall above South Park Loop Road. Word spread quickly after the...
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