I once had an encounter with an aggressive goat. Unbeknownst to me, the neighbor’s goat herd had gotten loose. I was carrying my laundry from my house to my parents (due to a broken washing maching–my daughters never learned that you can’t stuff 18 pairs of jeans into the washer). A massive goat ( a really tall goat!!!) blocked my way in the middle of the wooded part of the path and, due to the washing machine issue, I was in no mood to be nice.
I yelled, stared him right in his beady little eyes and made a gesture with the clothes basket.
That was the wrong thing to do. His eyes actually turned red. They did. And he reared up on his hind legs and made a rude noise. He clearly felt as if his manhood (goathood?) was being challenged.
I screamed and ran, still holding the laundry basket, and found refuge in my parents’ garage, where my father and two of my children were hiding. They had also had a Goat Encounter and were waiting to hear the sound of hooves receding from the property.
So IF I was ever to hike and IF I saw mountain goats acting all weird and confrontational, I would not look them in the eye and scream. Backing away slowly might be a better option.
Goat experts chime in, please.