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COUNTY: Flathead County
LOCATION DETAILS: While I cannot give a specific location, I will do my best. We were off highway 83 east towards the mountains. We were hunting district 130 of MT, north of Lindberg Lake, and south of the hunters check in station heading north on 83. I believe we were behind the small airport.
NEAREST TOWN: Swan Lake
NEAREST ROAD: 83
OBSERVED: I am not sure that I had sighting. The reason I am writing this is because I listened to the "Whoops and Knocks" recording from CA, and it reminded me of what I heard while I was hunting on Tuesday afternoon.
I was hunting with friends in the Swan Valley of MT. I do not know the exact location, because we were in the backwoods, and traveling on back roads off of Highway 83. We were on the east side of the highway north of Condon and I beleive south of town Swan.
My Partner and I split up (our other partner was in his truck up the road). He was to my left 150 yards and in front of me by 200 yards. I saw something brown in the corner of my eye pass behind a tree to my right, hoping it was a deer or elk, I started to head in that direction. My partner contined heading toward and through a ravine.
I would walk, and then stop for about 10-20 seconds looking around. I kept hearing a knocking sound. I thought it was a very close woodpecker, but could never see one.Plus it was really loud. After I decided that I must of lost the deer or elk, I decided to head down into the ravine my friend has been went through about 5-10 minute before me. The knocking sound became loud and I was sure that it just was very loud wood pecker, or deer ruttings(The rut is not for a couple of more weeks). The sound always came from the right of me.
After hearing knocks on the recording in the Seirra Mountains, I am about 98% sure that is what I heard. Wood or something hitting wood, which also explains the volume and pacing of the knocking. I walked down into a ravine and it got a littel louder. Then all of sudden the knocking just stopped.
I decided to go find my partner and walked out the ravine to the other side. I could not find him, so I went back through the ravine, and heard more knocking.I walked back somwhere between 1/2 to mile to our drop off point on the road (I came out about 100 ft to right of the spot), and thought I heard and elk call (which none of my partners heard) but sounds very much like the whoop call after the 1/2 point of the recording.
The two men I was hunting with are expereinced hunters and in the woods. It was my second time hunting. I told them about what I thought was the elk call, and neither of them heard it. When I heard it I was probably atleast 1/2 mile from them. I did not mention the knocking, because I though it was bird, and no big deal.
I have hiked/backpacked in Tenn,CT,NC,AZ, The Cascades in WA, Grand Coulee Dam Area of WA, and enjoy being in the woods. This is my first time that anything like this has happened.
I will leave the verdict up to you, You are the experts not me. If this was a sighting then great I am glad that I could help. If not then that is fine too
ALSO NOTICED: The woods went quite after the knocking stopped. Then after a while 2-5 minutes I heard a pine squirrel.
I only heard one whoop call.
OTHER WITNESSES: Zero.
The other guys were far away from me, when I heard the knocking, and they did not hear the whoop.
OTHER STORIES: No, this was my first time in the area
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Clear Sunny Day, windy, in a pine forest. It was in the afternoon somewhere between 2-5pm
ENVIRONMENT: I was hunting in a pine forrest, with ravine in the middle of it. In the Ravine were a a lot of fallen trees loosely piled up. One of my landmarks (for gettign out of the woods)were 3 trees holding another tree horizontally at about 4 - 6 feet in the air
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Mike Aragona:
I spoke with the witness on the evening of February 16, 2010.
The brown figure was off to the right side, parallel to the witness. Shortly after the glimpse of the figure the wood knocking started coming from the same direction as the possible sighting.
The witness mentioned that he thought it might have been a Woodpecker until he listened to the "Whoops and Knocks" recordings from the Sierras in California. What the witness encountered was not a Woodpecker but rather a Sasquatch or a group of Sasquatch. This was confirmed as I had the witness listen to Pileated Woodpecker pecking and drumming and the witness said this was clearly not what he heard.
The Pileated Woodpecker is one species of Woodpecker native to North America and large enough to possibly produce loud wood knocking; however the difference between Pileated drumming/pecking and Sasqautch wood knocking is quite clear when compared. Woodpeckers tend to have a sporadic rhythm and when drumming the sound is very fast like a jack hammer but not as loud. Woodpeckers do not eat wood, they peck searching for wood boring insects, which is a staple in their diet and hollow out dead tress for a nest site. Woodpeckers drum to claim a territory and attract a mate. To listen and view a Pileated Woodpecker, click the link below.
Like the Woodpecker, Sasquatch wood knocks are used as a form of communication, possible mating courtship activity and territorial claim. However in contrast Sasquatch wood knocks are very loud, definitive, and intense and can be heard over long distances. Sasquatch wood knocks generally have a set rhythm of one knock pause or several knocks pause and not as fast as Woodpecker drumming. To listen to two versions of Sasquatch wood knocking click the links below.
Click download a 1974 clip of whoops and knocks from California after clicking the link below.
Sierra Sounds Whoops and Knocks
Click here to start download.. . after clicking the link below and open the file. Depending on your computer and internet connection speed the download could take up to one minute. The Sasquatch wood knocks can be heard in the distance in response to my wood knocks.
New Jersey Wood Knocks
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.