No physical evidence accompanied the sightings.
"Does that mean there wasn't a cougar there?" Nielsen told Outdoor Life. "No. It means we didn't get any evidence."
Will we see a self-propagating population of mountain lions in the region anytime soon?
Probably not. Complicating things is the fact that a disproportionate number of migrating animals are male, so the potential of a breeding pair is very slim.
The experts say cougars found here in the next few decades will more likely be transient than a resident.
Nevertheless, there is no dispute that lions are expanding there range - and at record dispersal rates.
"They're simply running out of room in the West," Nielsen said.
Northern Lake George Fishing
Tourney reported as largest ice
fishing event on lake this season
Steve Ramant, vice president of the Hague Fish & Game Club, reported that the club's 50th anniversary, Northern Lake George Ice Fishing Tournament on Feb. 28 - March 1 was a huge success.
Ramant said adverse conditions and excessive high winds on Saturday didn't discourage the 259 men, women and juniors that hit the ice.
"The clubhouse was standing room only on Sunday afternoon for the awards ceremony and a good time was had by all," Ramant said.
The winners of the Adult Division were:
• Lake Trout: Chris Mitchell of Granville, 13.35 lbs, 33 and one half inches
• Perch: Brad Bardeau of Moriah, 1.12 lbs, 12 and three quarter inches
• Salmon: John Bently of Brant Lake, 3.66 lbs, 22 inches.
The Junior Division winners were:
• Lake Trout: Hagen Lilley of Warrensburg, 4.57 lbs, 25 and one half inches
• Perch: Brett Moore of Putnam Station, .69 lbs, nine and three quarters inches.
Ramant said the club would like to thank the Hague and Ticonderoga Chambers of Commerce for their support as well as the 69 local and national merchants & companies that made the tournament possible. A special thanks, he said, should go to The Hague Sno-goers and Hague Fire Police for all of their help.
"We hope to see you all next year for the 51st Anniversary tournament. Plans are now under way to again make it the largest ice tournament on Lake George," Ramant said.
John Gereau is managing editor of Denton Publications and an avid outdoorsman. His column appears weekly.