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COUNTY: Iron County
LOCATION DETAILS: Ottawa National Forest between the north branch of the paint river and the borski creek.
NEAREST TOWN: Sidnaw
NEAREST ROAD: county road 485
OBSERVED: This incident happened to me during the november deer hunting season of 1996. I was deer hunting on state ground that lies in back of our cabin in Iron county in Michigan's U.P. It is very rugged country with only a few foottrails that we keep open for access. The land is a mixture of high rock hills with very thick pine and hardwoods with dense swamps and small streams and creeks running through it, along the rivers are very thick tag alders which make the area outstanding for deerhunting. One evening when I was walking back to camp which was approx. 2 miles away I came around a bend in the trail and saw about 50 yds. in front of me a silhouette of what looked like a very large man in the middle of the trail. The ground was covered with about 6 in. of snow along with the trees so I could make out this dark silouette very well. I thought it was one of my buddies so I said fairly loud" so, what did you see!". Immediatly it turned and stepped across the trail and into the bush with no noise whatsoever. I stood there dumbfounded and scared for about 5min.Before I worked up the nerve to walk up the trail to where I had seen it,as this was the only way back to the cabin. I walked up to and past the spot where it was with my rifle leveled and the saftey off hoping not to see it again. I never did, it had just vanished without a sound. I hurried back to camp and never mentioned it to anyone.I went back the next day to look for sign of any thing but about 4in. of snow fell that night and I couldn't find anything. Over the years I've played this over in my head and the only thing I can come up with is that that for a brief instant I was talking to a bigfoot who didn't want to talk back.
ALSO NOTICED: Nothing, no noises, no footprints, no breaking of brush, it just vanished.When I went back the next day I stood where I had seen it and compared what I remember of its height to the tree in front of it and it was approx. 7to71/2 ft. tall with shoulders approx 3 1/2 ft. wide.
OTHER WITNESSES: None,just myself
OTHER STORIES: No, but I hunt there every year and I have felt somethings presence ever since.Whatever it was it wasn't a bear and it wasn't a man.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Just after dusk as the woods were starting to get to dark to shoot but I could see fairly well because of the snow.
ENVIRONMENT: Higher ground mostly pine and poplar inbetween swampy areas with tag alders. very thick.If there was ever a place for something like this to be I guarentee you this is it. No one ever goes there but us.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Paul Schnabel:
After talking to the witness by phone he was unfortunately not able to recall any more details due to the failing light conditions. He was able to get an idea of the size of the animal he encountered. The height was approximately 7-7 1/2 ft. and the shoulder width was approximately 3-3 1/2 ft. wide. He was impressed by how quickly and quietly the animal moved. Very fluid in motion and was unquestionably bipedal. I found the witness to be sincere. The area is very desolate and access is limited. Large game is abundant in the area.
About BFRO Investigator Paul Schnabel:
Paul Schnabel is a letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service and an EMT for the area search and rescue.
Paul attended the BFRO's 2006 Wisconsin, 2007 and 2008 Michigan U.P. expeditions and the 2008 Minnesota private expedition