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DATE: early july
COUNTY: Siskiyou County
LOCATION DETAILS: East Boulder Lake serves as a reservior for the city of Callahan. It is about seven miles from town up the watershed. Access is easiest from Mosquito Lake which is due south. About a four hour light hike on granite outcrops that cut a path through the buck brush and Jeffrey pine.
NEAREST TOWN: Callahan
NEAREST ROAD: State Hwy 3
OBSERVED: I was working as a councilor at wilderness summer camp based at Mosquito Lake. Several councilors would sign up each session for excursions on 1 to 3 nights away in the back country. This hike was during the second session in early July.
We had completed the major stretch of the four hour journey when we came over the ridge and could see East Boulder about 3/4 of a mile below.
There were 4 councilors and about 25 boys and girls ranging in age from 9 through 15. We had stopped for a last gulp of water at a clearing just below the rim of the ridge when several of the campers began to squeal excitedly and pointing at the steep slope directly to the northeast and to the right of us. Not more than 50 feet away at the same elevation stood an erect hairy creature looking right back at us. One of the kids yelped, "It's a bear!" Tim, one of the councilors, muttered, "That's no bear."
The details are still vivin in my memory. The creature was leaning against its left arm which pushed it out from the canyon wall. The right arm swung back and forth as if for balance and it bobed its head irregularly. It was about 5'6" tall, covered with long reddish brown fur with a large flat face and round yellow eyes. During a discussion later, Sunny, who was studying biology at UC Davis, insisted that she observed the creature to have a hairless chest with large round protruding nipples. This led her to conclude that it was possibly female.
The creature held its ground for a little over 1 minute before it spun around and ran away from out group upward towards the rim to the right of us. As it ran it sent a landslide of skree down into the valley below. When it reached the ridge it turned and peered back at us once again and then disappeared over the edge.
Much excitement followed and the decision to continue down to the lake and set up camp was made. Curiously, there didn't seem to be a trace of fear among the children although all the councilors, myself included, did admit later to being afraid.
The first thing after dark that I noticed was a powerful odor that came from the Ponderosa grove. The closest comparison I can come up with is that the smell is skunk like but muskier with a hint of urine. The entire camp began to get a whiff of this odor and the animated discussion about the sighting during the afternoon became hushed. In the quiet we could hear landslides from a number of different places midway up the ridge, a dim green light about the size of a small grapefruit. The odor intensified and the snapping of branches not more than 10 yards away sent the whole bunch of us into a cluster around the fire. The odor was intense when a large shadow figure took several long deliberate strides through a gap in the trees. It had to be about 7 feet tall. I saw this creature only once but others in the group saw several dark forms over the next 2 hours.
Shortly after midnight an 11 year old boy in the group began to complain of great pain in his lower abdomen. This pain increased over the next hour to the point that he was laying on the ground pulling his legs up towards his chest. The councilors agreed that it appeared that the camper was having an appendicitis attack. We drew sticks and Larry and Tim headed out in the dark back to the main camp to bring a stretcher with a four wheel drive truck to the logging road just over the south ridge. Sunny and I remained with the group, some of them sleeping and others tending the campfire. At the point when Tim and Larry's flashlights were no longer visible, the odor departed as well and the night became still and quiet.
The next morning shortly after dawm, Tim Larry and Warren, the camp director, arrived at the camp with a olive green military stretcher.
Warren would later question every member of the group. He observed that the key elements of the story were consistent in each telling. He conceded that we had indeed experienced something strange but insisted that the concilors present agree to the possibility that what we had seen were bears.
ALSO NOTICED: The green lights remain a mystery.
This definately appeared to be a group or family. In my opinion they meant no harm and were genuinely curious about the children. They did not make any loud screame or stomp as reported in other sightings. They did not appear to want to scare the kids.
This was the last excursion to East Boulder Lake that Summer.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: The height of summer. Warm and clear. Not a cloud in the sky.
Bright reflections off of granite rock faces. Light breeze.
ENVIRONMENT: First sighting was on the ridge that rises at the southern end of East Boulder Lake. A well worn path decends several hundred feet down past two small washbasin lakes to the shore of East Boulder.
The rim of the canyon is barren and constructed of skree and talus.
Second sighting was at the campfire on the west side of East Boulder Lake. The basin surrounding the lake is used as grazing land for cattle with scrub oak along the western shore line of the lake and a dense grove of Ponderosa that runs along the base of the steep western rim. The broken remains of a small wooden platform sits half way between the lake and the pine grove. A rusted bed frame and cast iron stove lay nearby in the tall summer grass. Cattle wander lazily in the pasture on the east side of the lake.
Follow-up investigation report:
Follow up to the 1966 East Boulder Lake, Trinity County report.
By Robert Leiterman
On 07-06-00, I received a telephone call from W.E. about his unusual encounter with possible Bigfoot type creatures, while he was a councilor at a wilderness summer camp near the north eastern edge of the Trinity Alps.
I found W.E. to be very sincere about his experience, fairly knowledgeable about the areas wildlife and very open to explanations for some of the more unusual aspect of what his group experienced that day and later that evening.
When they first dropped over the ridge and surprised a hairy creature 50 feet away. The group, about 29 of them, predominately children ages 9 to 15, reacted excitedly to what they believed to be a bear. But after closer examination, it was determined that the animal was more human like than bear like.
It's estimated 5 foot 6 inch erect figure had bobbed its head irregularly and leaned against the canyon wall with its left arm and swung its right arm back and forth, as if for balance. He described it as being covered with long reddish brown fur with a large flat face and round yellow eyes and was not associated with a powerful odor.
Those were features that the group could have easily described from the distance they were at. One of the members of the group, who was studying biology at UC Davis, insisted that she observed the creature to have a hairless chest with large round protruding nipples she believed what she was seeing was a female.
This is where it gets interesting. In the primate families, Gorillas don't have hairy chest/breasts but chimpanzees do. Most of the reported Bigfoot related sightings describe the chest/breast areas of the animals to be covered with hair. Few of the reports that are submitted state that there was little, or like in the above report, the very distinct lack of hair. A variation in reports does tell you that we definitely don't have the answers.
W.E. stated that when he thinks about the animal he watched on the side of the mountain, that sunny day for over a minute back in 1966, before the Patterson footage was big news, he wonders about the validity of the footage.
When he takes a closer look at the animal in frame number 352 of the 1967 ,Bluff Creek Bigfoot footage taken by Roger Patterson, he finds himself asking if that was a female Bigfoot caught on film that afternoon, then why are her breast covered with hair?
They watched the animal run quickly up the skree-covered slopes on two legs, very uncharacteristic of a bear. When she reached the top, she gave one last look as she disappeared over the top of the ridge.
When I asked why the group didn't cancel the camp out and head back to the safety of the main camp, he said the children were not all that worried or concerned about their daylight sighting of the animal. The adult leaders were a little concerned but willing to continue if the children were willing. So the trip continued and they set up camp near the lake.
After darkness, they began to notice a powerful, skunk like/urine odor that came from the nearby trees a way from their campfire. Soon after that, followed the small skree landslides from the surrounding hills.
Even today, W.E. finds the next thing they had experienced very unusual.
For a brief moment, they observed a dim green light about the size of a grapefruit about mid way up the ridge. The odor intensified and the braking of branches, ten yards away from the edge of their encampment, frightened the group and they all ended up near the fire. It was from there that the members of the group saw the silhouettes of two or more seven foot tall creatures periodically moving back and forth amongst the surrounding trees for approximately two hours.
It wasn't until after midnight, that two adults had left the group to seek medical aid for one of the now, suddenly ill, children, that the strange smells and activity had come to an end. He stated that as soon as two of the counselors left, the smells disappeared. He remembered watching the two lanterns ascending the hillside, wondering if they were ever going to make it out of there. W.E. speculated that the animals might have followed the two adults away from the camp.
W.E. felt that the creatures had a very powerful interest in the children and even if they had felt threatened at that time, there was never really truly a threat. Just some very powerful curiosity followed by a very powerfully bad smell.
The glowing grapefruit sized dim green light has me baffled. I have just recently experienced the green glow of phosphorescence or bioluminescence not that long ago. While out in the field, I was blown away by the concept of glowing insects. Hearing and reading about it is one thin, but to experience it for ones self, that is another story.
These insects were called Glowworms, for lack of a better definition, and different species are found throughout most of the North America. Intrigued by how nature works I found out that even though a percentage of insects manage to glow on their own, some of the luminosity we see as light comes from the presence of luminous bacteria in their bodies.
The ones that produce light like the fireflies produce light in all of their stages of life. Other insects like several species of Ground Beetles (Carabidae), Click Beetles (Elateridae), Midger (Chironomidae), Springtails and Fungus Gnats (Mycetophilidae) produce light. There is even a moth that gives off a luminous secretion, if you can imagine that!
For those who are curious, the light is produced as a result of an oxidation process where Luciferin (no relation to the Devil I hope) is oxidized with a luciferase enzyme.
Anyhow, depending on the species of insect, the colors of the light produced varies from greenish-blue to golden-red and they say it is entirely free of ultraviolet. These wavelengths are of the light spectrum that is the most sensitive to the human.
So if you rule out hoax, what do you have left? Is it possible for an intelligent creature, knowing what these insects do, to collect a few of them into a container of some kind, and use their generated energy as a source of light, like a flashlight, to make it down the spree covered slope safely? One can only speculate. There are many more organisms we share our planet with that also generate their own source of light. Many of them have made themselves at home in the darkness.
End of report.