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COUNTY: Josephine County
LOCATION DETAILS: The location is the switch-back portion of the Big Tree Trail from the Cave at the Oregon Caves National Monument park. I certainly couldn't be more specific after three years.
NEAREST TOWN: Oregon Caves National Monument
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 46
OBSERVED: I and my now-ex-husband were hiking the Big Tree Trail after going on the Oregon Caves Tour. We were about midway along in the hike, when we heard a loud, deep call. It came from above us on the hillside, starting at our left. It started faintly, and picked-up volume as passed above us on the hillside, and then faded away. It moved quickly... not as quickly as a bird flies, but far faster than a man travels. It was deep, and the quality was such that it seemed far away, yet was clearly audible. It sounded like, "whuh! whuh! whuh! whuh!" The trail cuts through pretty dense forest, and we couldn't see anything.
There were no starts and stops to this repetitive call, no slowing of movement judging by the movement of the sound.
ALSO NOTICED: We came across a large "bedded-down" area of grass in a meadow. We joked about it being a bigfoot nest... but I'm thinking it was a deer that lay there in the night or morning. No scat nearby.
OTHER WITNESSES: Myself and my then-husband. We were hiking, hoping to sight chipmunks or deer.
OTHER STORIES: I had read a story about a man sighting a Sasquatch on that very trail a month earlier, and remembered that he had reported hearing a similar noise before the sighting (accompanied by a strong odor). We certainly didn't smell anything, but the sound rang a bell, as it were. I wouldn't have made this kind of association to that sound if I hadn't read the article. I just would have thought, "what the hell was that?" and forgotten about it.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: About 1:00pm. It was sunny, hot, and dry.
ENVIRONMENT: Thick, green, Oregon forest.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Dr. Wolf H. Fahrenbach:
The witness imitated the call, which can also be paraphrased as "wha' - wha' - wha' -", like an emphatic sound of "what" without the terminal "T". It was identical to the vocalization once demonstrated to me by another curator who heard the sound in western Washington and imitated it in the same fashion.