DATE: Second week of June, 1997
LOCATION: Stranger Lake, near Lac Seul, Ontario north of Sioux Lookout.
OBSERVED: From the Sioux Lookout Bulletin Volume 6 number 36 Wednesday July 2, 1997 a story by John Lynch
Bigfoot or big hoax? That's what people are asking after witnessing large footprints around Stranger Lake in the last month.
Two weeks ago, Sachigo Lake First Nation resident R.B. was on Stranger Lake when he thought he saw something.
"I was out in the boat riding along the shoreline of Sachigo Lake when I saw something moving in the bushes," he said. "I circled back in the same direction for a second look not too long after, but I saw nothing."
What piqued R.B's curiosity, however, was what he saw on the shoreline about 100 feet back from the water when he came back later that day.
"There were large tracks close to where I saw the movement earlier," he said. "Two days later I went back and took pictures of them. I first thought I had seen a moose move in the bushes, but the tracks were much bigger than those of any moose."
While R.B. has heard many of the local legends over the years about the large hairy creatures said to have visited our area, he is not fully convinced of anything at this point.
"I've heard the stories, but I don't know," he said. "I have never seen tracks like that before in my life. My sisters came with me when I took the photos and they were surprised by what we saw."
One of the sisters, Sioux Lookout resident V.M. actually measured the footprints.
"They are 15 inches long and six inches wide," she said. "They are all over the place. Some of them are located near the cabin I have on Stranger Lake, but are mostly all faded now."
"All I can say is that I've lived in the bush all my life and I've never seen anything like it."
ENVIRONMENT: Remote fishing lake Precambrian Shield
ALSO NOTICED: The witnesses are both First Nations persons and will not talk easily with the press. However, both have privately said that they saw a gray shape that scared them.
ACTIVITIES OF WITNESS(ES): Both witnesses were in their boats, driving along the shore.
CONFIDENTIALITY: Witnesses are First Nations persons and would appreciate some sensitivity to the topic of their legends and traditions and heritage.
I have talked with the reporter, one of the earlier witnesses, and am trying to get an introduction to V.M. to obtain permission to visit her cabin on Stranger Lake and obtain additional info.
COMMENTS: Local people have seen the Polaroid pictures taken by R.B.
V.M. is telling her family far more than she would tell the press.
Both persons are solid citizens and respected in their communities and by their friends and families.
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