Travis Kauffman uses his foot to choke the mountain lion as it attacked him out running.
On February 4 2019, a runner jogging on a park trail in the mountains of northern Colorado, killed a mountain lion that pounced on him from behind. The attack happened near the city of Fort Collins about 66 miles from Denver, on the West Ridge Trail at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space. The runner who was identified three days after the incident as Travis Kauffman had a fight-to-death experience with the mountain lion. He recounted the encounter recently, explaining how he used his foot in self defence.
Travis Kauffman has been in Fort Collins for about five years living an outdoor lifestyle, and he described the experience as nightmarish.
Kauffman’s Heart Sank Into His Stomach
Kauffman was running down the trail when he heard rustling of pine needles behind him. Turning towards the noise he saw the large creature that turned out to be a mountain lion. The feeling that came after coming face to face with the mountain lion he described as ”I just kind of had my heart sink into my stomach a little bit”. The lion was about 10 feet away at this point and Kauffman started to yell, throwing his arms in an attempt to scare the animal. This didn’t work, as the lion pounced, targeting Kauffman’s face and latching its jaws around his wrist as Kauffman tried to protect his face as the lion was already scratching away at his face and legs.
Kauffman tried to throw the lion off him, and they both tumbled down a slope, with a wrestling match ensuing between them.
Using His Foot As The Last Resort
After struggling for a while, Kauffman managed to pin the back legs of the lion, reaching for rocks and sticks to force it down. Kaufman’s arm was still within the lion’s jaw at this point, and he realised he needed to do something fast. He therefore made use of the only weapon he had left; his foot. With his arm still, Kauffman got his foot pressed on the lion’s neck, holding it down till it suffocated and let go of his wrist.
Kauffman Ran Three More Miles After The Attack
After suffocating the mountain lion, Kauffman had to run three extra miles to ensure his safety. He was injured and bloodied at this point and had to look out for other mountain lions in the area. Not long after, he encountered another runner and together they ran down the trail till they came across a couple near a parking lot. They took him to the hospital, where the doctors cleaned him up first and look at the extent of his injuries before stitching him up. In total, Kauffman got three stitches in his wrist, six along the bridge of his nose, as well as nineteen in his cheek. This is a very rare occurrence and one which is not likely to happen again. Ever since the incident, Travis Kauffman has been in the news, granting interviews on what went down.
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