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COUNTY: Volusia County
LOCATION DETAILS: From US1 head west on Wilmette. After a small rightward bend, you will see an apartment complex called Willow Pond on the right, after entering the complex, follow the parking lot all the way to the back, and once you find the pool the entrance to the dock is on your right. Follow the dock about an eight of a mile to a large uprooted tree. Another 40 feet directly back, off the dock, is the tree in question.
NEAREST TOWN: Ormond Beach
NEAREST ROAD: Wilmette/ US Highway 1
My friend and I, were 'spotting' gators one night in Ormond Beach, FL when we had an encounter with something, well...unknown.
We were near a lake when we heard something large in the woods behind us. When we shined our lights into the woods to see what was making the noises, we heard a series of blunt beating noises, about a second to two seconds apart. The sound was like that of a wood baseball bat hitting a tree. This went on from about 30 seconds to a minute before the tree fell. As we heard the crackling of the falling tree we ran back towards the nearest safe place to us. At this same time we heard in the woods to our left, something almost stalking our every move. Once we got to "civilization" and realized we were out of danger, we decided to go back to find out the source of what happened.
When we returned, almost an hour later, we found a tree freshly broken in half, the break being about eight feet from the ground. The break was not a clean cut like that of a hatchet, rather like the tree had been bent to its breaking point. We knew this was a fresh break from the dripping sap, which next day was dry so it was definitely the source of the noise of a falling tree. On a branch about seven feet from the ground we found a hair sample. The hair is still yet to be identified. The best description we can give is it is a two to two and a half inch light brown hair, which is wavy with a kink close to the middle of it.
The tree is about 25 to 30 feet tall. The break was about seven to eight feet in the air. At waist, the diameter is about ten inches, and at the break between six and eight inches.
Please help us to determine if this was from a known and indigenous species or if it was our distant friend.
Also, If there is a credible source to send the hair, to find out its origin, please send us a lab.
***A NEW REPORT (37689) OF THIS INCIDENT WAS FILED 11/25/12. THIS IS THE STATEMENT FROM IT. BOTH REPORTS ARE NOW COMBINED.
While walking down the dock, the woods next to the dock began moving and shaking violently. We were scared but assuming it could be a bum, we shouted into the woods. Eventually the shaking stopped and a few minutes later, we heard a knocking sound. It sounded like a 4x4 size pieces of wood hitting a tree. The knocking went on for several minutes. We continued to yell trying to figure out what it was. Next, was the scariest part. A tree about 25-30 feet from the dock started rocking violently. Still screaming, the tree fell toward the dock and we started running, the whole time we heard something keeping pace parallel to us on the dock and grunting. We later went back and found a brown/red hair hanging from the bottom of a branch.
ALSO NOTICED: The hair, obviously. Later in the week, we returned with another person and to plant a cantaloupe on the tree in question. We then heard a loud wheezing noise which sounded close to a boar being startled in its sleep. The cantaloupe was later found completely dug out with the shell still perfectly intact. The hole we made was only about six inches in diameter. No other damage was done to the shell.
OTHER WITNESSES: There were 2 witnesses.
We were spotting alligators with flashlights, since there were several reports of two large gators in that lake. We were poised in close proximity talking about the goings on of the day.
OTHER STORIES: There was a lady, who had moved to the area. She and a realtor were looking for properties when "a large ape-man looking animal ran out into the road. When the realtor honked the horn it stood up on its hind legs, looked at the two women and ran off into the dense woods." This was about twenty years ago.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Night, at approximately 11:00
There was a light from the other side of the lake, but wasn't bright enough to shine past about four or five feet into the woods.
ENVIRONMENT: Standard Florida swamp lands. This day it had rained on and off the duration of the day. Before this encounter, the rain had stopped roughly an hour before.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator R. Monteith:
This report was originally submitted in 2005, and unfortunately was not looked into and misfiled. Thankfully, the witness filed another report almost 8 years later. I was able to pull up the original report and found that even after all these years his story remains the same. The only hesitance was that the witness couldn’t remember if it had happen in 2005 or 2006 (the original filing date clarified the year.) I found him to be very honest and credible. I’m pleased he filed his story again and that I have been able to verify it.
In late May of 2005, the two men were shining a light into the lake looking for alligators.
Google Earth image of the area:
It was after 11:00 pm and still cloudy as it has rained on and off all day. As they walked down a nature trail-like dock that runs along the east side of the lake, the trees next to it started shaking violently. They were startled but thought it was a vagrant and shouted at the source to stop and attempted to scare it away. It stopped for a few moments when they heard what sounded like a bat hitting a tree about a dozen times. They continued to yell at the noise source. At that time they noticed a tree top about 20-30 feet from the dock start rocking and saw it fall. This frightened them so much they turned tail and ran. As they ran, they heard grunting and heavy steps, parallel to them. It kept pace.
They returned about an hour later and found the tree had been broken by what appeared to be a twist (not cut) about 8 feet high. It was evident it was a fresh break because sap was still wet and dripping. The tree was estimated to be more than 20 feet high.
The men had found a hair on the tree just under the 8 foot break. One of the men carried this hair with him until his death in 2008. It was described as a thick hair with a brownish red hue.
The surviving witness remembers putting the cantaloupe in the tree, but couldn’t remember the details after all this time.
This location of this incident has a green area that connects to Bulow creek which has had several credible reports in the past few years. The actions described have the hallmarks of sasquatch intimidation activity which include tree breaking, knocking, pushing over trees, and “escorting” people out of the area.
The men mentioned another story in the area of two ladies seeing an “ape man” cross the road. I was able to speak with both senior ladies and their report is report #40034.
About BFRO Investigator R. Monteith:
R. Monteith has had a life-long interest in Bigfoot and has an extensive background in outdoor land and ocean survival as well as mountaineering. She has tran-sailed the Atlantic, backpacked in remote places throughout the world and has climbed three of the seven summits. She studied International Relations at Florida International University, and is a Financial and Real Estate Consultant. She has participated in many private expeditions as well as the 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2015 BFRO North Florida Expeditions and the 2013 BFRO UP Michigan & Alabama Expedition. She also organized Florida's 2017 Town Hall Meeting. She was an Executive Producer of the documentary film, "Skunk Ape Lives" and featured as a Crypto Expert on The Science Channel's television show, Strange Evidence for seasons 2 and 3.