HomeOutdoorsViralSnow Leopard Plunges Down Snowy Mountainside in Dizzying, Wild Moment Caught on Camera

Snow Leopard Plunges Down Snowy Mountainside in Dizzying, Wild Moment Caught on Camera

by Brett Stayton
Snow Leopard Looking Over Mountain
Photo by Kathleen Reeder Wildlife Photography/Getty Images

Snow leopards just might be the most badass big cats on the planet. This video shows the absolutely insane terrain they inhabit and hunt in. It also showcases a little bit of the species’ acrobatic hunting ability. It also exhibits the toughness it takes to live in the dangerous high alpine areas where snow leopards roam. It’s hard not to have an incredible amount of respect for one of the coolest wild animals on planet Earth.

Snow Leopards have some of the most stealthy and bold hunting techniques in the world. Their thick and vibrant gray fur is one of the sharpest-looking camo patterns in nature too.

A crazy video from the iconic account Nature Is Metal recently shows a snow leopard on the hunt. The footage is from somewhere high in the Himalayan Mountain range. As it moves to take down the blue sheep on which it plans to feast. The big cat goes tumbling down the side of the mountain with prey in its jaws. It’s one of the wildest nature videos you will ever see. The majestic feline never loses its handle on the sheep though. The creature somehow has a successful hunt and walks away unharmed from the rocky slide down the mountainside.

Nature Is Metal Shares Wild Snow Leopard Hunting Scene

“Go Big or Go Home!

Snow leopard risks life and limb to catch a blue sheep.

I like to use metaphor sparingly to jazz up a story here and there, but this one needs no soundtrack, this is as badass as it gets. This snow leopard literally risked her entire being to make this death-defying catch, tumbling over 300ft down a jagged, icy mountainside all to silence her hungry belly.

Imagine having to do something like this every time you were hungry. I’m no scientist, but that could eventually prove to be unsustainable. For the snow leopard, this is just another Monday.

Would you believe me if I told you that this leopard sustained no major injuries over the course of this semi-controlled descent? I wouldn’t either, but it’s the truth. This same leopard was spotted 72 hours later, looking to give something else a flying lesson.”

Community Based Efforts Helping Conserve Wild Snow Leopards

According to Panthera, the nation’s premier big cat research and conservation organization, snow leopards are one of the most enigmatic and misunderstood species of wild animals in the world. The big cats range spans 12 countries. That range spreads just over 772,000 square miles across high Asia. Roughly 50% of their habitat is found in China alone. Panthera helps protect snow leopards by conducting surveys, training national biologists in conservation techniques, assessing threats, securing their habitat, and reducing conflict between snow leopards and local communities.

According to National Geographic, In places like Pakistan, locally driven conservation efforts like the depredation insurance program being run by people on the ground like Shafquat Hussain are taking snow leopard conservation to new heights.

Finding A Balance That Works For Cats And People Is The Major Key

Attempting to balance the livelihoods of humans and animals who were encroaching on each others’ turf, Hussain created Project Snow Leopard, a nonprofit centered on an insurance program that compensates herders for goats, sheep, yaks, and cattle lost to predators. Hussain estimates that some 50 of the big cats may have been kept alive and permitted to roam the mountains freely thanks to the program.

“Snow leopards are beautiful, cunning predators—they’re at the top of the food chain and regulate the balance between predator and prey,’’ says Hussain, a Rolex LaureateNational Geographic emerging explorer, and Big Cats Initiative grantee. “At the same time, to a herder who has 20 goats, they’re deadly enemies that need to be eradicated. You can’t expect people who are struggling to be conservationists.” Project Snow Leopard has enabled some to be both, allowing the coexistence of humans and animals.