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COUNTY: Alexander County
NEAREST TOWN: Olive Branch
NEAREST ROAD: Illinois Route 3
OBSERVED: The first Tuesday of August 2011 I was pulling up to a hunting area, I had parked the car and was getting ready to get out and get my gear. It was a little bit after 4 o'clock in the morning because I had just dropped my wife off at work so it was still two hours before sunup.
So, I was sitting there, getting ready to get my gear when all of a sudden a just got this chill all over me, the hair stood up on the back of my neck, my arms, and something inside just told me "don't get out of the car".
So I sat there, I drank a 16 oz Full Throttle energy drink, so with my kidney problems in the past, kidney stones, when I have to go I have to go or my kidneys start hurting. So I finally broke down and stepped out of the car, I didn't even step completely out of the car, I was between the car and the door. I caught this brief scent that smelt skunky and musky. But it was really, really light so I didn't really think a whole lot about it. I didn't have a flashlight shining around at the time because I didn't think I would be in the woods long before the sun would come up. I figured I would go out there and catch an hour or two nap before the sun came up.
So, I got back in the car and an hour later I had to relieve myself again. I got out, I didn't hear anything, I didn't see anything and this time I didn't smell anything. So I relieved myself and got back in the car. I waited for sunup, where it started getting light enough so you could see where you are going. I walked down the trail to this pond, which is on the north side of the fire access road. And I sat there for about fifteen, twenty minutes and I came back up to the road and I started walking east on the fire access road. I came across this turkey scratch in the middle of the gravel pad, it was hard packed with a light dust on it.
And there was a beautiful track, the toes were visible. I took a picture of it with my hunting boot which is a 10 EEE beside it for comparison. It was so fresh in that dust the picture showed up really good. However, when I went back the next day due to the wind the track was no longer visible because the dust is so light, which tells me it was an extremely fresh track because you can see from the photo that the track is plainly visible with very good definition considering the dusting ground that it was on.
ALSO NOTICED: Just the smells and the chill while I was in my car
OTHER WITNESSES: None
OTHER STORIES: I also saw one near here in October 2011.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: 6:30 a.m.
sun was up, clear
ENVIRONMENT: Woods, ridges, ponds
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Stan Courtney:
Photo of the possible footprint in the light dust of the turkey scratch.
I spoke with the witness by phone.
• Only one footprint was found as the road was gravel and hard packed except for where the turkey scratch was.
• Although the witness did not have a measuring tape with the photo I was able to approximate the dimensions of the footprint from his boot size.
• The footprint was 18" long.
• The width was 8" wide at the ball of the foot
• Although the witness states that all the toes were visible they do not show up clearly in the photo.
• This area of Southern Illinois is very heavily wooded with many ridges. A small pond was several hundred yards up the road.
The witness had previously submitted another report, see: Report # 36246
About BFRO Investigator Stan Courtney:
Stan Courtney has a special interest in wildlife audio recording. He has attended numerous BFRO Expeditions. See Stan's blog StanCourtney.com for recordings he has collected over the years.
Stan Courtney can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org