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COUNTY: Bonner County
LOCATION DETAILS: The "High Drive" is located in a remote part of the Selkirk mountains between Lake Pend Oreille and Montana. At Clarks Fork turn rt. after the gas station and go across the bridge over the Clark Fork river, the road turns left and follow it east. Turn rt. onto the Smith creek/Jordan creek road and travel approx 1.5 hrs on that road. Sorry I can't be more specific but it was 35 years ago although I camp and fish in that area frequently.
NEAREST TOWN: Sandpoint
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 200
OBSERVED: My grandfather was a logging contractor and would frequently take me along on sale scouting expeditions. This particular day we were driving in an area know by the locals as the "High Drive". It is a very rugged and mountainous area above Lake Pend Oreille. Most of the road is cut into the side of the mountain so it is very steep on the uphill as well as the downhill side. It was fairly late in the afternoon and was about an hour before dusk. The road is just an old forest service road and not very well maintained so we were going fairly slow maybe 20 to 25 mph. My grandfather made an expletive that I won't repeat and stopped the truck. In front of us across the road ran a huge hairy animal. It ran down the uphill side of the road, crossed in front of us and ran right downhill. This took all of about 2 or 3 seconds that I saw it although my grandfather (always on the lookout for game) must have seen it sooner. I remember that it was dark colored and hairy with long arms that swung sort of in an exaggerated way. At the time it looked 20 feet tall (I was only 7) but in reality was probably 7 or 8 feet tall and it didn't take it long to cross the road and down the side of the mountain. It maybe took it two or three strides to accomplish that and it was fast. My grandfather grabbed his rifle and jumped out to see if he could see it going down the hill but he didn't. I can tell you that I was plenty scared. It definately was not a bear or anything we had ever seen before!
I read a siting on your website about an experience some campers had which would have been about 20 miles as the crow flies from where we were located although many years apart. That is what prompted me to write my story. I have not told very many people about this as I thought they would laugh or think we were nuts.
ALSO NOTICED: Brush breaking as it ran downhill.
OTHER WITNESSES: My grandfather who was driving the pickup.
OTHER STORIES: I did read one on this website that would have been about 20 miles as the crow flies from where we were. That is what prompted me to write my siting story.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: About 4:00 PM. It was a nice Autumn day, sunny and cool.
ENVIRONMENT: Pine and fir forest with some swampy areas near creeks that have cedar. Very high mountain area. Steep enbankments on either side of road.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Stan Courtney:
I spoke with the witness by phone.
She stated that the animal was very tall, hairy and upright while running on two legs. She is a veterinary technician at a local university and has spent a lot of time in the woods and is well acquainted with bears and other wildlife.
About BFRO Investigator Stan Courtney:
Stan Courtney has a special interest in wildlife audio recording. He has attended numerous BFRO Expeditions. See Stan's blog StanCourtney.com for recordings he has collected over the years.
Stan Courtney can be reached at email@example.com