Catching a glimpse of wildlife in real life can be exciting, thrilling, rare — and just really cool.

But depending on where you live or travel in Colorado, wildlife encounters here are fairly common.

Many of these encounters happen by chance, and typically from a far enough distance where it's safe for both you and the animal — but sometimes these encounters occur in a fashion that's a little too close for comfort.

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Here are some instances of crazy wildlife encounters that have occurred in Colorado over the last few years (disclaimer — the footage is WILD):

An Elk Traffic Jam in Estes Park

Bear Breaks Into a Home in Vail... And Plays The Piano

A Man Gets Footage of 4 Mountain Lions On His Porch in Conifer

Bobcat Filmed While Stalking Birds in the Backyard of a Boulder Home

Hiker Stalked By A Mountain Lion in the San Juan Mountains

If you do ever have a close encounter with wildlife, here are some tips to keep in mind from Colorado Parks & Wildlife:

  • If the animals you are observing have their heads up, ears pointed toward you, or appear 'jumpy' or nervous when you move, you are probably too close; sit or stand very quietly, without making eye contact, or move slowly away to a safer distance
  • Be especially sensitive to and cautious around adults with young
  • Never chase or harass wildlife
  • Do not feed wildlife
  • Avoid eye contact with wildlife; instead, watch from the corner of your eye

The Most Dangerous Animals in Colorado + Why They're Dangerous