In over 5,000 miles on the trails, I still haven’t seen a mountain lion in Sedona, but I hope someday I will.
First, they are powerful, beautiful animals. Adults weigh 70 to 165 pounds; stand 2 1/2 feet tall at the shoulder, and measure 6 feet long, plus a few more feet for a tail. Females are smaller than males, and both range in color from gray to tawny. Kittens have spots.
Mountain lions are at the top of the food chain, preying on deer, among other small to medium-size mammals. Their teeth have developed to make them remarkably successful hunters and carnivores. Although they could be about at any time of day, most hunting is done at night, and alone. A large kill will be covered over by the cat, who will return several more times to feed.
The range of this incredible feline, elsewhere called "cougars," can be over 100 square miles, although it may share this terrain with others. In Arizona, it is estimated that around 3,000 exist. We find mountain lions from southern Canada through southern South America.
While they are worthy of respect, your fear is unwarranted. In over a century of recorded history together, there have been fewer than a dozen human fatalities in North America due to mountain lions. In Sedona, the number of sightings is very few and far between.
I have seen mountain lions in the wild and in captivity are they are amazing to behold. In Sedona, I’ve only found their scat and their footprints, but they are surely out there, somewhere.