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COUNTY: Monterey County
LOCATION DETAILS: It was at a campground in Big Sur California. I can't remember which one.
NEAREST TOWN: Gorda
NEAREST ROAD: 101
OBSERVED: I was camping with my friend and her family in Big Sur California. It was 1974. My friend Sylvia and I were sitting on the sand near the beach. I looked up at the cliffs and I saw something big and black running down a very steep mountain side very fast,not losing its' balance. I yelled at my friend to look . She saw it. We ran as fast as we could back to the safety of our camp. I remember we were scared to death and we told her aunt and uncle. I remember we said it looked like a big gorilla. We were kind of far away from the mountain, but it looked like the creature could have caught up to us fast if it wanted to. It was quite a scary experience. I don't know where my friend is but her name is Sylvia Txxxx. I haven't seen her since 1974. I don't know where she is but she could corroborate this story. It seems like a dream now, but I know what I saw.
ALSO NOTICED: It looked humanly impossible for someone or something to run down a jagged mountain cliff that fast without losing its' balance.
OTHER WITNESSES: One. Sylvia Txxxx sitting on the sand.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: around 11:00 A.M. sunny, no clouds.
ENVIRONMENT: Breathtaking clifts, redwoods, ocean.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Bart Cutino:
The following information and details emerged from my initial and subsequent phone interviews with the witness:
The witness and her companion, both aged 13 at the time, were visiting a Big Sur State beach and campground with the friend's relatives in the early spring of 1974. Both girls were sitting on the beach where “water meets sand.” When the witness turned around and looked up southeast towards the mountainside, she saw a tall, black, bipedal "gorilla" with an extremely agile gait, running downhill. The witness's reaction alarmed her friend who quickly turned around and glimpsed the subject as it disappeared into the tree line near the bottom slope. Both frightened girls hastily retreated towards the campground area half a mile away.
The witness could not really determine their distance from the subject. However, she estimated that from "far away, " she had a clear view of the subject due to both the sunny weather and the contrast of the subject's dark color against the mountainside. The witness also stated that her impression of a "gorilla" was a result of the "crested-like" head on the subject, combined with a broad proportioned upper body. According to the witness, the nimble manner in which the subject moved down the mountain slope frightened the girls even more than its appearance. She vividly recalls the combination of the subject's speed, controlled gait and exaggerated arm movements as it easily traversed the sloped, rugged terrain. The witness estimated her sighting lasted between 10 and 15 seconds.
This encounter took place along the jagged peaks of the Big Sur Coast, which stretches for more than 70 miles – From just below the Carmel Highlands to the Monterey/San Luis Obispo County line near San Simeon. This diverse, picturesque landscape consists of many breathtaking cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Fed by as many as fifty different mountain streams, the mostly mountainous terrain is densely covered in chaparral, manzanita and oak. It also holds large pockets of coastal redwoods and indigenous Lucia firs in its moist canyons. Approximately 150,000 of these acres lie within the Ventana Wilderness and Los Padres National Forest.
Due to the witness's unfamiliarity with the Big Sur coastline and the considerable amount of time that has passed since her encounter, there is no way to determine the exact location of this sighting. I initially suspected Andrew Molera State Park was the likely location. However, I've reconsidered after consulting with former State Park employees, seeing aerial photos of the Big Sur coastline and taking into account the witness's recollection of the surrounding landscape. It appears that the alleged encounter took place much further south, just north of the small town of Gorda. I now believe Sand Dollar Beach and adjacent Plaskett Creek Campground correlate with both the witness's descriptions of the terrain and landmarks and her perceived distance from her hometown in Southern California.
The witness, who hasn't seen her friend in almost thirty years, encouraged me to locate her if possible. However, my attempts to do so were unsuccessful.
Ever since her encounter the witness has maintained an avid interest in the Sasquatch phenomenon. Throughout her adult life she has camped recreationally in various forested areas of California, but never again experienced anything that she would interpret as being Sasquatch related.
About BFRO Investigator Bart Cutino:
Part owner of the "world famous" Sardine Factory (Restaurant) on historic Cannery Row, Monterey, CA & Wealth Management Consultant for the NCW Group in Monterey, CA, Bart Cutino has been an enthusiast of large "unrecognized" North American primates for over 28 years.
Is part of CA-BFRO contingent "crew" and has attended/assisted every CA state field effort since joining the organization in 2004.