A jogger in Colorado choked an 80-pound mountain lion to death with his bare hands after the cat attacked him on a trail.
The man, who has not been identified, was trail running on the West Ridge Trail at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space in Fort Collins, Colo., when he heard something behind him, according to a statement from Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
More on today's mountain lion attack at Horsetooth Reservoir Open Space: the trail runner is recovering from his injuries, and the lion was killed as the victim defended himself on the trail. A necropsy will be performed by @COParksWildlife. More details: https://t.co/RVX0pfMg62
— CPW NE Region (@CPW_NE) February 5, 2019
The big cat then attacked him from behind, bitting his face and wrist. The victim sustained facial lacerations, wrist injuries and scratches and puncture wounds to his arms, legs and back.
The runner then fought back. He was able to suffocate the animal with his bare hands, killing it, the CPW said. The runner didn’t use any weapons.
“The runner did everything he could to save his life,” said Mark Leslie, the manager for the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Northeast Region, said in a statement. “In the event of a lion attack, you need to do anything in your power to fight back, just as this gentleman did.”
The jogger sustained “serious, but non–life threatening injuries” in the attack. He was able to run out of the park and get yo a hospital for treatment. A necropsy of the animal this morning confirmed that the lion was suffocated.
Deadspin reports the park was reopened last night after the investigation was concluded.
Mountain lion attacks don’t happen very often in North America, with less than 20 fatal attacks in the last 100 years. The CPW reports that mountain lions have injured 16 people and killed three in Colorado since 1990.