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PROVINCE: British Columbia
LOCATION DETAILS: Approx. 30-40 miles from Powell River, B.C., up Powell Lake on the North-Eastern arm.
NEAREST TOWN: Powell River
NEAREST ROAD: Goat Lake Main & Hwy 101
OBSERVED: This is a retrospective report of serveral incidents over a period of approx. 25 years - all taking place on the North-Eastern side of Powell and Goat Lakes, respectively.
1/ It was early summer of 1984. I was 14. A friend and I decided to row into Haywire Bay for an overnight fishing trip - we planned on setting up camp on one of the small islands situated in the bay. Late that night - could have been around midnight or one AM, we heard a giant splash on the mainland side of the lake. We both froze, waiting to hear it again, trying to decide what it was that made the noise. We heard it again and conjectured that it must be a Beaver slapping its tail. But something about it seemed to defy this conclusion - the sporadic time between splashes, and the resounding kerplunk sound of what must have been large rocks being dropped or thrown into the water. Then a truly large splash sounded from what must have been a very large rock. Whatever it was must have been very large. We told our parents about it at which time it was put down to the overactive imaginations of two teenage boys. We never spoke of it again.
2/ Ten years later I had gone with another good friend of mine John, to a cabin at the head of the right arm of Powell Lake. There were quite a few people staying at the cabin this particular week end so my friend and I stayed in a tent at the edge of the small clearing. The cabin is fairly remote - at the time there were perhaps only two or three others within a mile or so. Must have been three in the morning when I woke up to relieve myself and stepped outside the tent. While I was out there heard a very unsettling howl - the best way I can describe it is that is sounded like a mother wailing for a lost child - long and plaintive and very loud. It sounded as though it was coming from up in the mountains on the opposite side of the river. This went on for five minutes or so. I went into the tent and woke John and we ran through all possibilities - Elk, Cougar, Wolf... Thing is we both have spent our entire lives to date in the mountains and can easily identify any of those animals if called upon. This was different. And very eerie. Made the hair stand up on my arms. The next morning one of the other ladies staying in the cabin brought it up saying she'd heard what she thought must have been a sasquatch. I said I'd heard it too. John didn't cop and the older men assigned the sound to a mother cougar.
3/ Approx. two years after the above incident I had just come in from out of town for a visit. John and I hadn't seen each other for some time so stayed up and had a beer or two to catch up. After we had talked for a while he told me of an encounter that shook him to the core. The incident took place on a logging rode that traverses the North-east shore of Powell Lake and at times runs up into the mountains. It was after midnight and he and a logging friend of his had trucked a small boat in by this road to do some fishing and had had boat trouble so were late getting out of the bush. On the way down the logging road still many miles from town the van suddenly stalled. The two of them were fairly mechanically minded so got out and popped the hood to see if they could get the van running again. They hadn't been under the hood for more than a minute when beside them 20 or 30 feet away at the edge of the forest came a bellowing unearthly scream. My friend said it sounded like a bird-monkey-wolf but very deep and gutteral. The two men ran for cover inside the van - both of them too afraid to do anything. The thing that struck me most about the story is that I looked at John while he was telling me this and he actually had tears in his eyes. He said it was the most lonely thing he'd ever heard. And it just seemed to shake him. That's the best way I can describe it. That was the only time he ever said anything about it and refused to discuss it after that.
There are two more incidents in the same general location I can think of off-hand including one time three of us were camping on a mountain side on the West side of Goat Lake. Late at night we were startled awake by screaming that was coming from down the mountain at the lake side - probably a quarter mile off. The unusual thing this time was we could hear trees or tree branches being shaken violently - there could have been more than one animal making the noises.
OTHER WITNESSES: All told, 5.
OTHER STORIES: Have heard of many sitings over the years - mostly from loggers and hunters in the area. Stories span 1960s to now.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: All of these incidents took place late at night - midnight or later. Dark. It was nighttime.
ENVIRONMENT: Heavily forested, second-growth Cedar and Douglas Fir. Fairly steep terrain with intermittent flats and plateaus. Level at spots along the lakeshore.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Blaine McMillan :
The witness is a long time resident of the Powell River area and has hunted, fished and explored most of the surrounding area. He has a great deal of knowledge about the local wildlife and their habits.
He described numerous incidents that have occurred over the past 25 years. In some of these cases he was directly involved while the others had happened to his close friends. These incidents are typical Class B observations - rock throwing, vocalizations and the uneasy feeling of being observed.
About BFRO Investigator Blaine McMillan :
- Retired Canadian Military (Reg Force) Safety Systems / Aviation technician with experience on CF-101 Voodoo, CT-133 Silverstar and various SAR platforms including CC-115 Buffalo and CC-130 Hercules.
- Married with two young sons. An avid camper, hunter and fisherman.
- Holds a BA in Criminology from the University of Manitoba, courses in Alternate Dispute Resolution, Anthropology and Political Science
- Attended the BFRO BC Expeditions in August of 2005, 2006, 2012 as well as Vancouver Island 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014.
- Organized the 2007, 2008 Vancouver Island as well as 2009 North Vancouver Island Expeditions.
- Author of "Woodknocks and Tossed Rocks: Searching for Sasquatch with the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization.