Paul Harbour could barely believe his eyes.
On Saturday, what turned out as a normal hunting trip for the Clay City resident turned into one interesting find.
While hunting at a private residence near Interstate-70, Harbour snapped photos on his cell phone of what appeared to be a mountain lion hovering near the tree he was in.
"I was hunting and it came in," Harbour told The Brazil Times. "It wound up that it was just right underneath my tree."
Harbour was bow hunting for deer at the location when he spotted the animal close to 5:15 p.m.
"You hear of lots of sightings," Harbour said. "I was awed. I could not believe it. I even questioned myself wondering if I was seeing things."
Harbour said he contacted representatives with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and the Exotic Feline Rescue Center, Center Point, after he saw the animal.
Harbour said representatives with the feline center agreed it was a mountain lion, but could not confirm if it was the cougar that escaped from the center a few years ago.
On Monday, representatives from the rescue center would not comment on this issue.
Harbour said when he saw the animal, the first thought that went through his head was to shoot at it with his bow.
Harbour said he eventually did shoot at the animal, but missed.
"What really surprised me was how big it was when it's right next to you," Harbour said, "and how quiet it was. I never heard it. I could not believe how stealthy it was."
A teacher in the Clay Community School Corporation, Harbour said the animal he saw Saturday appeared to be healthy.
"The cat I saw was very well fed," he said. "But it was so quiet. It was at least 20-feet away from me when I saw it the first time. It got as close as probably 5-feet, maybe 8-feet from my tree, then it doubled back and left."