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STATE: New Jersey
COUNTY: Essex County
LOCATION DETAILS: I don't know the name of the road I was originally traveling on but I made a left onto what I was later told was Kennedy parkway southbound this is the road where the crossing occurred.
NEAREST TOWN: Livingston NJ
NEAREST ROAD: kennedy parkway
OBSERVED: April 29 2006 about 630pm I just left the Livingston mall and was heading home but got all turned about since I don't go up that way very often. Anyhow I was figuring that I was north of rt 78 and just kind of "Lewis and Clarked" it toward home via the mirror compass in my car and made the first left southbound that I could once I realized I was heading west and didn't recognize any landmarks.
I turn down this road and notice some construction equipment not far off into the trees on the right side of the road. I was driving slower than normal being unfarmiliar with the area and since I kept peeking at the compass to make sure I was still southbound (looking back it must have been overcast since I would have just used the location of the sun as a reference to direction).
As I was driving along I caught movement out of the corner of my eye and saw a young deer (judging by size) bolt out of the trees across the road from left to right about 100-200 feet in front of my car. I just took my foot off the gas and didn't need to brake, then I looked left for followers and saw what appeard to be a hunter in a dark colored ghillie suit burst from the trees after the deer. I couldnt make out any details of the face feet or hands but he/it was only around 6 feet tall or so and I'd estimate the low 200lb range but was unusually fast especially for someone dressed like that. The second thought in my head since I fish and shoot a bit was that it couldn't possibly be legal to hunt around that area since its fairly close to residential zones. Then I noticed that the hunter had no weapons in his hands. I got up to the spot where they crossed and looked right and noticed that the biped (hunter) actually closed ground on the deer and was still in pursuit. I don't know if the deer stopped to look back at some point as they some times do but this thing was in a full tilt sprint over what I would assume to be uneven ground and didn't stumble once. I didn't hear or smell anything since I had my roof up and AC & radio on at the time. All of this happened I would estimate in less than 20 seconds total.
ALSO NOTICED: the arm swing and speed of the "hunter".
I'm an athlete and played division 1 sports so I've seen fast footspeed on optimal surfaces for running this was beyond that especially for wearing what appeared to be a ghillie suit. The arm swing was also exagerrated in that it seemed to reach out at the end of the swing rather that keeping the elbows around 90% like most people do when they run.
OTHER WITNESSES: I was in the car alone and no cars coming in opposite direction.
OTHER STORIES: no I checked your site and the NJ bigfoot site after telling a Navajo friend what I had seen. He said some Navajo word to me and when I said "what?" he said bigfoot but added that they usually drop from trees onto the backs of deer passing below breaking their spines or legs to immobilize them. I'm not great at the geography of that area but I figure the closest sighting posted on your site is the West Orange sighting by a woman out of her bathroom window.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: I got into my car around 630 pm or so and it was either getting dark or was overcast because I remember having the top up on my car.
ENVIRONMENT: Originally I didn't really notice anything but the trees on both sides of the road but having gone back there a few times during daylight hours I noticed lots of swampy standing water areas and what looks to be a resevoir/water management area so it might be off limits to poking around but I've seen deer around on the subsequent visits .
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Mike Aragona:
I visited the area with the witness on Saturday December 9th. This person is in his early forties, married with two children, and holds a professional position in the pharmaceutical industry. I found him to be very credible.
The sighting took place on route 607 southbound. This location of Livingston is fairly wooded with a mixture of hardwoods, conifers and some swamps. There are three reservoirs in the general area that are owned by the Commonwealth Water Company. Deer are plentiful here and were present at the time of the investigation.
The witness told me that he could see what looked like 3 to 4 inch dark brown or black hair flowing from the lower head and shoulder region of the figure chasing the deer. Overall, the figure was dark brown to black. No facial features were made out due to the distance involved and the short duration of the sighting.
Upon searching the swamp where the figure entered after crossing the road, a possible track was found, photographed and cast. The track measured 14 1/2 inches long by 6 inches wide and was sunk into the ground 2 inches deep. There is no way of knowing if the same being seen made this track, although the overall size of the track would suggest a larger individual. Also it was obviously not made at the time of the sighting. I estimate the track to be a week and half to two weeks old. There was not much detail as the constant freezing and thawing of the swampy earth caused the soil to crack, but the outline of a left foot could clearly be seen. The terrain of this area was very un-even and filled with clumps of grasses. It is my opinion that it would be very difficult if not impossible for a person to run this terrain without falling or breaking an ankle. Below are photos of the area and the track casting.
The road in which the figure crossed left to right.
The swamp where the figure entered in pursuit of the deer and where the track was found and cast.
Side view of track casting. Cuboid Bone bottom, Navicular Bone top.
Side view of track casting. Cuboid Bone top, Navicular Bone bottom.
Track casting front view.
Track casting back view.
About BFRO Investigator Mike Aragona:
Mike is a long time New Jersey resident. He attended the 2005 and 2006 New York Adirondacks Expeditions, the 2006 Ohio Expedition, the 2008 Maine Expedition, the 2008 Pennsylvania Expedition, the 2009 Pennsylvania and New York Expeditions and the 2010 New Jersey, North Carolina and Pennsylvania alumni expeditions.