IS there a Scandinavian "bigfoot"? The legends about trolls might indicate a long history of sightings. There has been a small number of reports from Sweden and Norway. A type of wildman, the Snömannen or bigfoot purportedly inhabits northern Scandinavia in Lapland and the arctic regions of Norway, Sweden, and Finland. It is described as a dark, ape-like creature covered in thick, dirty, stinky hair. The face is broad with prominent brow ridges, nose pressed flat, with a mouth that juts out from a huge jaw.(Sound familiar?).
The following report has been collected by Jan-Ove Sundberg. This report is from an area north of Stockholm. There are lots of pine woods in that area, which sounds familiar.In the summer of 1985 a Swedish radio reporter talked about strange growls being heard in province of Helsingland. Two elderly moose hunters described how they had been tracking something big and smelly and finally released their dogs to give chase. "The dogs came back with their tails between their legs and were terrified", said Karl Johansson from Bollnas. A couple of month before this , a woman who remains anonymous, went out to a recreation area at Voxna to clean the family cabin ready for the summer holiday . She suddenly heard what she described as "pretty heavy feet moving around outside". She sensed that this was not an ordinary intruder and actually hid under a bed. "I never saw the creature but when one hour had passed I got up and went outside and then found giant footprints in the garden and around the house", she told Jan. She claimed that the footprints measured 45 cm in length and were 30 cm wide. Following this a couple of weeks later two teenage girls were skinny-dipping in a nearby pond when they suddenly heard someone or something moving about in the thick undergrowth nearby. Teasing and calling the intruder a pervert who spied on nude girls they moved closer and closer towards the shore, planning to surprise or even catch the culprit. Instead something right out of a nightmare suddenly rose up in front of them. Tina, 15, told Jan : "It resembled an ape but it was uglier and very large". Her friend Petra, 16, agreed and say´s that at the same time "a terrible stench" came from the creature, which growled at them pounding it´s chest. Tina and Petra swam ashore a bit further down, ran through the woods without their clothes and didn´t stop until they were home, a couple of kilometres away. Petra´s father didn´t believe their story but admitted that something had given the girl´s a pretty bad scare. "I thought it must have been a bear", he said on the phone. "There is bear in the area and if this one had a cub on the side it could´ve seen the girl´s as a potential threat". The girls themselves, badly whipped by lashing branches, during their hysterical run through the woods, said they did not see a bear but something far more frightening. "It was like a monster out of a movie and it walked upright on two legs", Tina said . "Even if it was ugly it more resembled a man than an animal".
Another sighting took place just south of Bollnasin Sweden Mrs. Gustavsson and her husband not only saw the Swedish Bigfoot but also heard it several times and even claim they found its droppings.. "It came quite close to our cabin and would kind of howl in the moonlight with a voice that reminded us of a human with a bass, very very deep. We saw it more like a silhouette against the sky and it never came so close so we could identify it properly", Mrs. Gustavsson said . "It was huge, powerful and gave the impression of being primitive but also intelligent". She also claims it had a whistling sound and at times they would hear what was either an echo or another bigfoot, answering the call. When Mr. Gustavsson investigated the area in daylight he found the classical, large footprints and also fresh droppings. "Its droppings reminded me of human excrement and first I thought that it was but they were left in such places a human never would go and I always found it in the area where we had seen this creature", said Mr. Gustavsson.The sightings all sound familiar to the North American bigfoot. Sighted in the wooded isolated areas and the whistling and foot prints. Bigfoot may have a Scandinavian cousin.
Snömannen is just a translation of "snowman",the english word for the Yeti.It is used in that meaning,not for a supposed native wildman.These reports are so obscure here in Scandinavia that the supposed creature so far hasn´t got a native name yet.Trolls have nothing to do with this,since trolls are never described as animals or monsters exept in childrens books.In real folklore they are people with language,clothes,money,cattle,that cook their food and even make music.A common rule how to recognise trolls in folklore is that they are always more beutiful and better dressed than humans.
There are no history of sightings of any wildmen up here that have made any impact in folklore.
But these sighting you mentions is still interesting....
there is trolls in the middle/north of skåne (independent region in south sweden). our teachers/school nannys (fritidshem) took us camping in those woods and told us all these troll stories and they really believed in that.
p.s. old people here have all these cool, wierd (borderline paranormal)storys and they rarely tell anybody about it. i have to drag all this spectacular information out of my grandparants and they are my family!
Always more beautiful and better dressed? That is directly contrary to the very definition of a troll in folk literature.
I would love to hear them. I know of 3 Bigfoot researchers in Sweden and Norway, and several others who live there and are interested in this phenomena. Any stories you have heard and would be willing to share would be greatly appreciated. I have a show called World Bigfoot Radio on You Tube and have been researching subjects like this on my own for decades. Thanks for your time!
Trolls have never been known to be nice in scandinavian folklore. They were big ugly beasts living in mountains and lakes. Other names are jottner, nøkken, skrømt etc. The samis are afraid of something they call Skunka which eats children. Not so different from Canadian Skookum.
As a response to those who said that trolls can't be depicted as nice looking and properly dressed;
There is a difference between trolls in scandinavian fairytales and folklore. In the tales they're very often depicted as big lumbering brutes while the actual folklore of pre-industrial times tell us of trolls more similar to us. They where described as fair folks that lived lives closely resembling the life of humans but in the wilds instead of the villages and cities. They even kept animals like cows and chicken, so if you saw a cow wandering alone in the woods you could be certain it belonged to the trolls.
One sign you met a troll and not a human in the woods is that you might spot their tail hiding beneath their clothes, or that they're unusually tall but still very human-looking.
There are much more I could tell you but I suppose you can find information by yourselves, I recommend books by renowned Swedish folklorist Ebbe Schön (although I'm afraid there might not be any English translations)
Best regards from a folklore enthusiast.
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