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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Things That Go Bump In The Night

First I would like to thank all of my friends, family and support network that allow me to pursue my hobby/career of Squatchertainment.  You know who you are and your anonymity is respected.

For the sake of anonymity and integrity of the story, I am going to assign an initial to the characters of the story.  In no way is the initial pertinent to their identity.

Earlier this week I (E) was contacted by a good friend who I respect as a Bigfoot Researcher.  He is dedicated, thorough,  persistent and takes squatching seriously.  He also belongs to a paranormal research group and that is fine, but, you have to keep the two activities separated; as we learned this weekend. He is D.

The tale begins with the witness, A who told his friend, B, about Bigfoot activity on his property.  He was missing one pet, a dog, and had another pet of undisclosed origin, (hey even pets get anonymity!) on a tether outside of his home.  Let me interrupt myself right here and tell you that after a couple hours of driving and arriving at the intended destination, I am seeing a VERY familiar pattern with the habitat and environment of these recent Bigfoot sightings in my region.  Not naming counties, yes even counties deserve anonymity,  the 4 counties I have researched in the past year all have, heavy woods, coal and or strip mines, a vast open area leading to a river, and populations of well under 1000.  Okay, back to the story.

So A, tells B that his remaining pet was throwing a hissy fit and acting a fool one evening about an hour after sunset.  He got up from his bed, grabbed his deer spotting light and shined it out into the yard.  Behind a clump of 8-10 foot tall bushes he spotted what he described as two very large white hair-covered legs.  His attention was then drawn about 20 yards to the right to his garage where he describes a large black haired Bigfoot stood, his head about 3 feet taller than the top of the gate.  As soon as the light hit the dark one, it took off running up the hillside "faster than anything  he had ever seen in his life".  He then heard the white one take off running in the other direction.  He was convinced in his mind, that he had just seen a couple of Bigfoots.  So after A, tells B, B says, hey, I know a guy who does paranormal investigations, I'm going to tell him  your story!

B contacts C, an amateur paranormal investigator who owns an impressive amount of IR cameras, ala Ghost Hunters style.  C is very excited about the story, but has never researched or investigated a Bigfoot sighting in his life.  He then relays the information to D.

C, D and some other uninitialized characters go out to the property to set up game cameras and bait stations.  They observe that the woods come alive after sunset and witness several grunts, howls, whistles and screams.  The search is afoot!

I received the email from D on Monday when I return to work although he had sent it to me Thursday evening, serves me right for playing hooky on Friday or I would have gone with them last weekend!

He followed up the email with a very impressively, thorough report of the area, findings, witness statement etc.
He invites me to come out to investigate with them. Of course I am stoked!  I love this stuff!

On the evening that I wrecked one of our cars, I began getting excited and frantic texts from D.  A's neighbor spotted a Bigfoot in his yard and called the police", "There is a manhunt going on", "High powered rifles...shoot to kill"  SHIT!  Why is this happening 2 days before I get there????

In my mind I am thinking, if there were Bigfoots in the area, they surely won't be sticking around for the gun show!  Damn!  WEll, I'll still go anyway because, I love this shit!  so anywho,  I meet D at the rendezvous spot and I make my approach to the LOCATION!  Ahh this is nice!  Peaceful, D tells me that only C and his wife will be joining us and we should be able to sit out and listen all night.  Awesome!

I am introduced to A and listen to him and D discuss what was going on all week.  I asked, so which one of your neighbors called the police to report a Bigfoot in their yard?  He says, "Huh?  I don't know about that".  Ugh, the unraveling of the story begins. So I say, "You know, State Police, high speed chase, high-powered weapons, shoot to kill???"  And he says, "Oh I don't know about all that!  I just heard some commotion on my police scanner, and the officer said "it's 30 yards in front of me, now it's 55 yards in front of me, it jumped over the bridge".  We don't know what "It" is.  There have been several mountain lion sightings recently.

D and I exchange a glance like, "Oh boy".  Like the game of Telephone, somewhere there was a breakdown in communication.

No worries! We still have the witness, game cams and an awesome night of squatching ahead of us!

C and his wife arrive.  C, D and E (me) head out for a good 3 mile hike.  The wife stayed back at the house with A and a radio.  Command Central.  I have no idea why we had to let C be in charge as he had never investigated a Bigfoot sighting, but, out of respect, we had to since he was the friend of B who gave him the lead.  Ahhhh.  Our fearful leader takes us right into the briar patch.  Oouch.  No worries!  I've been through worse!  We then ascend a hillside and he abruptly stops and says, "Look"  what? I see briars, trees, rocks.  "Look at those two rocks.  They seem out of place"  Ummm, excuse me, we are on the hillside in an area fraught with coal mines, strip mines...now if the rock showed up in the middle of your peanut butter and jelly sandwich, then I'd say, yeah, that doesn't seem natural.  Well he asked me to snap a pic of the rocks.  Here ya go.
Suspicious Rock!

Suspicious Rock's Evil Cohort!

Gorgeous view

Stix

Cave of branches

We travel on and we do find some tree bends and stick structures.  They take me to the area where they found a footprint the previous weekend but it had been obliterated by the rain.  But we did find another one!  Toes and all!  yay!

We do the necessary measurements, take the pics etc and move on.  The sun is beginning to set and we decide to head back, grab a bite to eat and relax before the evening activities.

The witness takes myself and D on a little tour of the neighborhood so we have the lay of the land.  Unbeknownst to myself or D, he pulls into a driveway of a person who had an ongoing Bigfoot invasion in the 70's.  These people have been interviewed and poked and prodded for over 30 years and were not surprised by his request to speak with us.  They were gracious and believable people.  Of course I didn't have my recorder, A had ambushed us! The gentleman witness told us that on one occasion he had the Bigfoot in his cross hairs.  The creature's glowing blood-red eye was the target, and he wanted to shoot.  He wanted to kill that thing once and for all.  And the Bigfoot stared him down as if to say, go ahead, do it.  But the man could not pull the trigger.  He believes to this day that the creature had willed him NOT to shoot.  Just as people who have a camera in their hand cannot take the picture of the Bigfoot.

I then asked the man my signature question, the question that haunts me, "Do you think the Bigfoot was more Human or Animal?"  He looked at me, without blinking and said, "Animal".  I want to tell you that these witnesses live in an impressive house and come off as well to do upper middle class people.  Funny yet serious.  Meeting them was the highlight of the trip!

We arrived back at the house and C begins setting up his equipment.  Remember, he is a paranormal investigator.  He took 150 feet of electrical cable and installed 4 IR cameras around the perimeter of the yard, every square inch was viewable on his fancy laptop computer.  No way in hell is a Bigfoot showing up within a mile of this joint.  (Rolling my eyes).  I go over to the house and sit with A and his friend and more and more people are arriving.  What a circus!  It is now about 10 pm and with a 3/4 moon we have some pretty good light...not only that but each of the 8 "paranormal investigators" were talking and laughing and shining their flashlights into the woods, the barn, into each other.  Talk about FRUSTRATION!  Never again.

D and I had on our parabolic mics TRYING to listen, anyway.  It's very easy to tell when people are afraid to be in the woods.  This gang was terrified!  LOL

D, me and another decided to take a quiet night hike and it was peaceful to get away from the circus.  We returned and at about midnight I decided to crawl into my sleeping bag in the back of my Squatchmobile and crash until the hoopla died down.

Finally around 3:30 am the others decided to call it a night and left.  The woods were weirdly silent.  No owls, no crickets, no spring peepers, not even any mosquitoes!  I fell back into a deep slumber.

I awoke to a warm sunshine, put on my boots and stumbled my scary looking ass out of the car.  The witness called me over and provided hot coffee and a rest room break.

C and his wife were getting ready to leave while A, D and myself were chatting.  They left and the 3 of us heard to weirdest call coming from the woods.  I said it sounded like a dog/frog mix.  It then traveled a distance around us and it was closer, and still kept calling out...it was like a hoarse beagle/frog/bird sound.  D grabbed his parabolic and we went towards the barn...we then heard another call coming from a half mile away the OTHER direction.  We aren't sure what it was, but 2 of them were communicating.

D and I then headed towards the coal mines and hiked a bit.  Found a great foot print with mid-tarsal break!  Nothing else though, no mountain lion tracks, etc.

We returned and said our goodbyes then went our separate ways.  The summer is early and I am sure once things die down, we will return to that area.  I have no reason to not believe that there is something in them thar woods!

Until the next adventure my friends!

PS.  Well it appears that I have offended the said "Paranormal Investigator" who obviously does not understand that the phrase "amateur" implies that he is not a "professional" paranormal investigator.  Unless you are paid  for your service, you are an amateur.  If you golf on Sundays, that does not make you a professional, however, if you get Titleist to pay for your equipment, and entry fees into tournaments, then you are a professional.

I will not be invited back by them, darn. And I thought this investigation was going to be the one that transformed me from amateur reporter to PROFESSIONAL BIGFOOT FIELD REPORTER! 

Have a great day!

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