I live in Northern Kentucky. Officially, the state says there are no black bears in the wild around here. They have made that claim with the absolute certainty of a man who states the Earth is the center of the Universe and the Sun rotates around the Earth. They have repeated it so many times that it has become the mantra regardless of how many sightings have been reported.
That was until about 2 years ago when a woman not only saw one (like so many others) but she saw it as it bounced off of the front bumper of her car. Hair samples stuck to the grill proved to be black bear.
Now, the state is saying it must have been an escaped pet.
Painters, Mountain Lions, Cougars, whatever you want to call them are very secretive animals, from what I've read about them, they are largely nocturnal and they try to avoid people. As many people who visit the park one would think sightings would be common, but one has to consider humans frequent a very small percentage of the land mass and cougars, by nature, are not as densely populated as would be a bear.
So, I would think that if you think you saw a cougar, you very well may have seen one. You know better than any of us, and you would have no reason to make up such a story.
Cool sighting whatever it was.