There have been 12 documented mountain lion attacks on people in California since 1890. Five of these were fatal, and two of the fatal attacks were in 1994. There have been more attacks in the last 10 years (9) than in the previous 96 years (3). (p) Mountain lion attacks on people are extremely rare, even for the millions of Californians who spend much of their time outdoors, hiking, camping, biking, hunting, and fishing. Experts agree that you have a better chance of winning the California Lottery than being attacked by a cougar.