Big cat ... or Bigfoot?
Submitted by John Kanelis on Thu, 12/30/2010 - 11:05am
Reports out of Carson County of a large cat preying on goats are beginning to have a Bigfoot feeling.I am not dismissing the pain of the folks who have lost the livestock in what has been described as a brutal attack. I mourn the loss of the animals.Carson County Sheriff Tam Terry has talked about a "large cat" that reportedly entered a pen the other day near Skellytown and killed several goats. He said one of the animals was torn in half."Everyone thinks its a mountain lion, but we don't have a way to verify that," the sheriff said.No one has actually seen the animal, he said. But authorities have found footprints that they believe belong to a large cat. Residents have reported seeing a creature that stands about two feet high.You've heard of Bigfoot, yes? I hail from the Pacific Northwest and Bigfoot has been part of my vocabulary for as long as I can remember. I recall the first time I saw the grainy film of what was believed to be the creature. I once thought it was real, only to realize that it's probably just someone in a gorilla suit traipsing through the Douglas fir forest.People found footprints in the woods of Oregon and Washington, too. Why, they even made plaster casts of them. But no one ever has actually produced physical evidence of the beast.Unless someone can prove beyond a doubt that mountain lions are prowling along the High Plains, I have to remain somewhat skeptical that they're actually here.Coyotes, though, do roam all over the place. They're known to kill livestock at random. And come to think of it, don't they also stand about two feet tall?
On the trail of Bigfoot
Twists and turns mark a Grants Pass man's decade-long search for the famed creature
By Mail Tribune
The first time Matthew Johnson spotted Bigfoot, the Grants Pass psychologist was answering nature's call on a hillside near Oregon Caves National Monument in summer of 2000.The last time the 6-foot-9,300-plus-pound man made contact with a Sasquatch was just a few months ago, he said. And he even pulled the hairy beast's finger.Rickman, Crater High School grad who won "Make Me a Supermodel" in 2009"I held onto it for about 10 seconds and then he slowly pulled it away," said Johnson, 49, who still lives in the Grants Pass area.Late in the afternoon on July 1, 2000, Johnson, his wife and three kids, freshly arrived in Oregon from Alaska, had already toured the caves and were out on the 3.3-mile Big Tree Loop Trail when everyone got a whiff of a particularly pungent musky odor. Then their ears picked up the sounds."Whoh, whoh, whoh." The strange noise continued in cycles of five to six repetitions, he said.Johnson began putting the pieces together and immediately felt his "fight-or-flight" response kick in.Telling his family to stay put on the trail below, Johnson climbed up a hill to do his duty, keeping a wary eye out for danger even as he hunkered, and that was the precise moment Johnson spied his first Sasquatch.The huge hairy creature appeared half-man, half-ape. It was standing about 60 feet away, peering at his wife and three kids. First from behind one tree. Then again, after walking upright to another tree, Johnson said.Fearful for his family's safety, Johnson buckled his britches and made his way down the hill. He told his wife to take the kids and get ahead on the trail while he lagged behind. An hour and a half later, and with no further sightings, Johnson and his family were all safely back at the caves.
Johnson spent the next decade chasing Bigfoot and was instrumental in forming the Southern Oregon Bigfoot Society.Members went on overnight camping trips in remote areas of Josephine County, where Johnson said he's found plenty of trails, bedding areas and footprints."I've been growled at, screamed at, and had pinecones thrown into our camps," Johnson said.Several months ago Johnson had a close encounter with Bigfoot in a "new research area outside of Grants Pass," he said."We're keeping the location a secret," he said, adding the area is bordered by federal land and is near a pond where they have found bedding areas and tracks of a "Bigfoot family group" consisting of an adult male, adult female and an adolescent, he said.Johnson can tell Bigfoot family relations by the size of their footprints and the bedding areas, he said."One print was 22 inches long, nine inches at the toes and five inches wide at the heel," he said.Johnson was just drifting off to sleep when Bigfoot poked Johnson's shoulder through the tent wall that night a few months ago, he said. On the third poke, Johnson grabbed the creature's finger and gave the digit, which he described as "a fat cigar," a good pull, he said."I bent it to see if it was jointed," Johnson said. "I wanted to know if he was poking me with his finger or a stick."About two minutes later, Bigfoot was back at the tent, this time poking at Johnson's own size 16 feet."The next morning we found two tracks by the side of the tent and all around the foot of my tent," Johnson said.
Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read full story here : http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20101230/NEWS/12300318/-1/NEWSMAP
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