THE's most elusive cat... is so perfectly camouflaged on mountain terrain it is almost impossible to spot.

But among the rocks and snow lies a leopard eagerly waiting to pounce.

A leopard is perfectly camouflaged on rocky mountain terrain

And once you catch sight of it, you'll wonder how you ever missed it.

The mind-boggling photo was taken high in the Himalayas in north-eastern India.

Photographer Saurabh Desai began trekking in the Spiti Valley in 2019 with one mission.

...I was on my search of the world’s most elusive cat which is also known as ‘Grey Ghost’ in the popular local language,... he told My Modern Met.

After almost three years on the lookout, Desai finally managed to snap the brown leopard about five miles from the high-altitude village of Kibber.

And it appears the big cat saw him too, with its piercing eyes looking directly into the camera.

Desai, from Gujarat, was left utterly ...speechless... by the chance encounter.

                                        Most read in The US Sun

            TRAGIC LOSS         

            Chris Daughtry's stepdaughter's boyfriend is arrested after her shock death         

            IN DESPERATE NEED           

            ‘Secret stimulus check’ sent out as calls grow for more mortgage relief         

            CHECK IT OUT            

            Surprise stimulus checks of $2,000 & $1,000 are being sent out          

            JAB RAGE            

            MMA fighter called Unvaccinated Assassin ‘stabs doctor to death with animal bone'           

            Emily's pain            

            I was in school when an agent said to me 'we know this girl gets f***ed'            

            LAW AND ORD-ARRR            

            Pirates cause shortage 'crisis' as criminals swoop to disrupt supply chain          

He said: ...The picture depicts the snow leopard trying to get off the cliff.

...But observing our presence, it decided to wait until it got really dark and it stayed there on the edge....

The recently resurfaced picture was taken at an altitude of 17,000ft at about -30C.

Oxygen levels had also plunged to less than 50 per cent compared to normal.

Social media users were perplexed by the photo, with some taking hours to clock the creature.

One said on Reddit: ...I've seen this image 643634 times and I'm always like, ...where are you you little b*****d?'...

Another commented: ...Honestly can't see any leopard...damn nature, you scary....

And one said on Twitter: ...After finding it... it becomes so apparent and easy to see....

Once you spot the big cat you will wonder how you ever missed it