I counted birds for some years on an army base that was known to habor a lion or two. On maybe two or three occasions in ten years I came across what seemed to me to be lion odors. Once associated with a dead raccoon backed into a hole with four long parallel gouges down its side, and once where my wife and I had heard guttural growling from not far off the night before.
Ya ever go to the big cat house at the zoo? A real heavy musky smell, definitly cat-like.
It's been many years since I went to a zoo with an enclosed big cat house, but yes I remember them being pretty odorous. In my incident there was no ammonia smell like you get with a neglected litter box. Also, I did find what looked like lion scats, about a 1/2 mile from the spot, with deer hair in them.
Yes I did have a .308 bolt action with me, but in the unlikely event I tangle with one, a big bore pistol seems like it would be more practical at close range, since you can work it with one hand.
Maybe next trip I'll also take some Jack Links, and make friends with a Sasquatch