Bigfoot Hunters Detect Signs of the Hairy Beast in Siberia
Officials Host Conference, Offer Reward; 'We Need to Sit Down With Him, Drink Some Tea'
TASHTAGOL, Russia—Stooping to the damp floor of a darkened cave, Anatoly Fokin picked some thin filaments from a muddy footprint. "I found some hair, some real hair," he said, pulling the strands apart. "And here there are more—maybe it was a girl."Mr. Fokin crept further into the chill, followed by a horde of television crews and photographers. Cameras illuminated more footprints and a bed of dried brush in a recess of the cavern. "This is unusual and good evidence," said Mr. Fokin, who dropped his full-time work as an architect to spend more time on hunts like this one. "A Yeti has been here."Throughout the world, lore persists about wild hairy creatures walking upright through woods. In the U.S. they are called Bigfoot and Sasquatch, in Russia the Snow Person and Forest Creature. Tibet spawned the names Yeti and Abominable Snowman.Dismissed as myth by scientists, Yetis are mainly the province of enthusiasts, and in Russia they've gotten an unexpected boost from the government. Siberian officials this month sponsored nature lovers, scientists and foreigners who claim they have socialized with Bigfoots to attend an International Scientific-Practical Conference on Hominology.Extract: Local officials say they will now make efforts to contact the beast, who hasn't yet been photographed. They will also begin funding a permanent center for Bigfoot research at Siberia's Kemerovo State University.Kemerovo Gov. Aman Tuleyev is offering a one million ruble, or about $31,500, reward to anyone who finds a Yeti, telling Russian television, "We need to sit down with him, drink some tea and talk about life."
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