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COUNTY: Cherokee County
LOCATION DETAILS: 1 mile from Big Brutus (a large coal excavator,a tourist spot).
NEAREST TOWN: Cherokee
NEAREST ROAD: 400 highway
OBSERVED: This happened about 25 years ago but I will remember it forever.
I live in southeast Kansas. My husband and I were driving around looking for a fishing spot. We went down a dirt road to a strip pit (from strip mining coal). I was ahead of Michael and I was being very quiet. Michael was behind me and I could hear him walking through the weeds. I came to a small break in the brush with a game trail on it and I followed it . I walked about 20 feet and came out into a small clearing. I was looking straight ahead at the water and from behind and higher up in the air a screeching screaming sound started. It was so loud that I crouched down and covered my ears and I had my eyes closed. The scream would go for a few seconds and then it would pause and suck in some more air and scream again. This went on for several seconds. I finally could tell that the thing was running away and I stood up and opened my eyes.
When I looked up the thing had jumped the creek in front of me about 10 feet and was running through the trees are was knocking the small trees aside as he ran away screaming the whole time.
I know that I scared it when I stepped out into the clearing. I wasn't looking in that direction so I didn't see it standing there. It heard Michael behind me but I was being very quiet. When I stepped out into the clearing I scared it.
Michael heard it screaming and started yelling for me. That's when I stood up and looked and saw all the trees being knocked around as it ran past them. It was the loudest animal I have ever heard. I might have saved my own life when I crouched down and covered my ears. The sound was a bit behind me and up in the air about 7 feet. It wasn't a bear or bird or anything else I could think of. It was a sasquatch. Many people have seen them here. We have alot of wilderness and strip pits for them to hide and live in. I could have lost my life if it had wanted to hurt me, but I scared it so bad all it did was scream and run away.
ALSO NOTICED: We were going to go back but it rained and washed away any prints.
OTHER WITNESSES: My husband was witness.
OTHER STORIES: Michael saw one about 8 years ago at a bridge about 2 miles from my house.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Daytime clear day
ENVIRONMENT: It was a heavily wooded area around a strip pit. 1 mile from Big Brutus, southeast Kansas.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Carter Buschardt:
I spoke with the witness. She remembered it like it was yesterday. She is a self-described "no nonsense" woman, not a "girly girl" nor subject to a wild or vivid imagination. She said she's not a person who scares easily.
She did say she was not real good with dates of event, so we settled on mid June 1995, though it could have been a couple of years either side of that date. It's close enough for the purpose of this report.
As stated, she and her husband Michael were on their way to fish one of their favorite spots.The location was very near "Big Brutus" which is a giant earth moving machine that is now out of service and used as a tourist attraction. The majority of the area between Cherokee and West Mineral Kansas is dotted with abandoned large pit mines or pit strips. The state has filled many hazardous ones in, but many others have been stocked and or maintained by the state. The area is also home to numerous swamps and conservation areas and according to her, there are "a lot of folks" who have seen and or heard things in the area.
As she was walking, she estimated she was about 50 feet ahead of Micheal. As she approached the creek she was walking very quietly so as not to scare off the fish. She was actually stopped so she could listen for the creek, and she could hear Michael still walking towards her.
She popped into the clearing mentioned and was looking at the creek at this point, when "something higher up in the air than where she was" let out a long, higher pitched scream". It was behind her "just a few feet". It was at this point she ducked down and plugged her ears with her fingers.
She estimates the screams lasted 3-5 seconds each, and as soon as the scream stopped, it "sucked in a massive amount of air" and screamed again. She estimates it screamed "4-5 times" and she heard the creature "sucking in more air" each time before screaming again.
She was too terrorized to look up. She had no idea what, if anything, it would do to her. After about the 5th scream, she heard it take off running towards the creek. That is when she finally stood up and looked around.
She estimated she was about 8 ft. from the creek at that point.
She heard it running towards the creek and "heard the steps as it ran" and could hear a grunt, as it jumped the creek. It cleared the creek in one jump. Creek was about 10 ft. wide at that spot.
At that point Micheal had caught up to her, and they watched as the creature crashed through the brush and knocking down trees on the other side of the creek, watching the trees and brush moving as it plowed through. It was gone in 5-6 seconds.
The scream "was blood curdling and incredibly loud". When she got to the area where the screaming started, she was looking to the left, at the creek, and whatever creature was screaming at her was to her right and slightly behind her. When the screaming started, she hit the ground in a ball, stuck her fingers in her ears, and waited "to get eaten". For good reason, she never looked around.
She is only 5 ft 1 in tall, and her estimate of the "height or area of the scream" to be between 7-8 ft "in the air". As we spoke, she surmised, and I agreed, that it is likely she walked right up on a creature that "must have been laying or crouched down" and just startled it. It MIGHT have been as scared of her as she was of it. It could also have been listening to her husband approach, as he was walking "kind of noisily".
Her husband had come running from where he was when the screaming started, towards the brush where the trail was, the one where she had been standing until she ducked down. He heard the screaming, but couldn't see her because she had dropped to the ground. He was yelling for her, but she did not answer him because this thing, whatever it was, was still right beside her and had not started to run off yet. He actually thought she had been "killed or eaten" for a brief moment.
They loaded up the car and headed home. She has not been back to that spot unless in the company of "numerous friends" in all the years since. As mentioned earlier, many, if not all, the abandoned strip mines or pits, are managed by the State of Kansas Wildlife Management Dept. Plenty of deer, fish, and productive farmland.
There are numerous tales by the locals, of sightings and sounds associated with Sasquatches. Her husband had seen one about 8 years before, near their home.
[[ Note from Matt Moneymaker:
The presence of reclaimed strip mines is something to note with this report because there are many sightings around reclaimed strip mines. The Wills Creek area (Coshocton County, Ohio) is just one example.
Strip mining in the Midwest during the past century created zones with numerous long deep gullies and ponds. Areas that would otherwise be flat and featureless and provide no protection from winds became rich wetland zones and effective wind shelters, desirable habit for many species.
About BFRO Investigator Carter Buschardt:
Carter is originally from Texas & moved to Missouri in 1988. Professional drummer for 20 years. Improv & sketch comic and writer for 5 years. Lighting technician for major touring groups for several years. Experienced outdoorsman and was a trained investigator for MUFON. Studied Herpetology in college. Longtime special interest in Sasquatch long term habituation, burial research, infra sound, language & stick structures. He led three Missouri BFRO Public Expeditions:, 2012 & 2013 & 2014. Participated in Iowa, 2012 Illinois. Michigan 2016. Private Expeditions: Illinois 2011, 2012, 2013. Missouri 2011, 2012 (3) 2013(2) 2014. Iowa 2012, 2014 & 2015. Consulted on two Animal Planet Finding Bigfoot TV shows. Expedition leader in Missouri 2013 (1) & 2014 (2). Illinois Expedition 2019. Led night ops on numerous BFRO expeditions. Hosted a public Town Hall meeting in Missouri in 2017.