Outdoors

Mountain Lions Spotted Near Lower Salt River: One More Reason to Not Go Tubing

If a bunch of drunk, loud, obnoxious college-aged kids floating down the Lower Salt River on tubes isn't enough to keep you away from what is otherwise a gorgeous part of the Valley, now you have large felines with the capability of tearing you to shreds to worry about -- several mountain lions have been spotted in the area in recent months.

The Arizona Game and Fish Department says there have been several sightings of the beasts near the Phon D Sutton and Granite Reef recreation areas over the past few months, which is exactly where thousands of  people will take to the tubes once the summer heat arrives.

Even when it's not tubing season, those areas are popular spots for camping, fishing, kayaking, and other river-related activities. Mountain lions weigh anywhere from 115-220 pounds, are about two feet tall, and have teeth that could tear a person apart. Needless to say, there's cause for concern.

The AGFD reports that the cats haven't caused any trouble -- yet -- and they haven't been bothering anyone.

They say, despite the animals being large, dangerous animals, there's no reason to be concerned -- mountain lion attacks in Arizona are rare. While there have been human deaths caused by mountain lions in other states -- like California and Colorado -- there has never been a reported death caused by a mountain lion in Arizona.

That said, there are still lions roaming around an area of the Valley frequently used by humans -- so be careful.

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James King
Contact: James King