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COUNTY: Multnomah County
LOCATION DETAILS: From I-84 take the Troutdale exit and go up the Sandy River to the Job Corps camp. On the left side of the road there is a large sculpture of a dragon made by a student at the gate.
NEAREST TOWN: Troutdale, Oregon
NEAREST ROAD: Troutdale to Springdale Rd.
OBSERVED: The story I have to tell is not a single sighting but three events that took place during the fall of 1979 and the winter of the same or the year of 1980. During this time I was working, living as a resident of the Portland Job Corps, which is located on the banks of the Sandy River, which enters the Columbia River at Troutdale, Or. The camp which is about 4.5 miles up the Sandy, I'd say, where the students live and worked at the time. I'm not sure if the camp is still there or not. The Sandy River takes a turn to the south [at the confluence with a small tributary] and goes up into the westside of Mount Hood. This is where the camp is located. The kids or students who lived and worked there were able to cut holes in the fence and play and explore in the woods, which we did. There was a path that led to the place called The Falls, which was about a half mile from the camp where a lot of students would go to hang out party etc. On the way to the camp was a structure the kids had made. I remember one of the people who constructed it. He was Jim Hinkly, an Indian, whom I knew to be a likeable sort of guy. It was nothing more than a framework made of poles or cut trees about three or four inches in diameter, put roughly into a big lean-to, using trees for support, covered with plastic to keep the rain off of us while we sat and smoked chatted etc. This place was used on a daily basises for a couple of weeks or so and every thing was cool till one afternoon, Jim came into the welding shop and told me someone or thing had destroyed the shack. Strange, I thought. So as soon as class was out, I went over to look at it. There was a structure about ten foot deep by about fifteen feet wide, nothing more than trees lashed to the standing trees to make a full roof basically at a slight angle to shed water to the back. The place had a strong smell, very bad, and the place was a wreck. The main trees/poles that formed the roof were broken in two, snapped like toothpicks. I'd personally hung on them many times and they hardly swayed under my weight. Chairs, broken metal, I might add, and the table broken like someone had hit it in the middle of it and broke it. There was hair around the trees also but no one thought to gather; it reddish in colour, about three inches long. The main things were the smell and the fear a person felt when close to the area. I'd say this was in August or September.
The next one was probably in October or November. A group of us was out back above the football field at night partying with the full moon. It was cool and foggy, with the fog moving quickly and low to the ground so the moon was seen but the landscape would be changing - sort of a nice night; the hill, a gradual one, was covered with long grass and we were having a good time with lots of noise, carrying on, probably a group of 8-12 kids, me being one. I would have been about 19 at this time, as were most of the others also. The party was going on when all of a sudden the entire group went dead quiet at the same time. We sort of all started looking around at each other and Martin, who was an Alaska Indian, standing next to me, said: "What is that?" Through the fog one could see the form of a large biped close to us, about 30-50 yards away, in the fog. We saw it long enough to know it was not a human, too big, too muscular. I'm a hunter, also have been that from the time I was 6, raised in the woods. I know bear, deer, elk etc., none of the above was what we saw. With the fog moving, it was an eerie scene as the thing would be visible, then fade and then show again. The moon was behind it, so it was a shadow that showed up fairly easily when the fast moving fog didn't obscure it from view. Martin said "Let's go see what it is". I said, ok, a couple of girls screamed, and we took off toward it and the girls and some of the guys took off the other way. What happened next was interesting. As we were moving toward the spot where we last saw it - briskly, I may add, I in the lead, all of a sudden I couldn't go any futher. My feet wouldn't move and as the fog moved away, it was about the same distance away, looking at us. Martin was close to me and as I turned to look where he was exactly, when we looked again it was gone in the fog. Total time elapsed was only about one to two minutes from the time we first saw it to the time that it was gone. We moved probable only 100 feet before we couldn't go any farther.
The third event happened that winter in a snowstorm - a bad snow storm, I might add. The camp had been stranded for about two days and it had been snowing steadily. It was about 7-9pm. I was dorm leader at this time. Two of the students came in the back door and both where white and moving fast. I said: "What is wrong with you guys?" One said nothing and another wouldn't say anything, either. Part of my job as dorm leader was to look into things like this so I followed them to their bunks and lockers where I got one - I forget his name - to admit that they were outback smoking on the football field when something scared the hell out of them. Rocky, the other person, wouldn't say much, just was white and scared. The other kept saying something out is there. Me being the fool I am, said "Bull" and headed upstairs to get my coat and boots on and headed out into the snow storm to the football field to find out what was up. Too much snow, about waist deep - I'm 6'2" tall - for a cougar etc. to be wandering around, I thought. So I headed out across the football field, being the brave fool I was. Things were going well until about 20 to 30 yards from the edge of the field, where the physical training stations were located. This camp used to be an FBI training camp, I was told, and it had a track and training stations around the football field and farther down the hill towards the creek where the road and the town of Troutdale sat. As I said, things were going well until about that far from the edge, when I suddenly couldn't go any further forward. It was not that I didn't want to; I couldn't and in the flying snow I kept being drawn to a large clump of blackberry bushes below the situp station. So I stayed there and played with the feeling. I could back up and it went away, I would come forward and it was present. Strange, I thought. I had a feeling about what I was feeling and what created it. No one else wanted to come out and play from the dorm. They thought I was nuts so I stayed for a while and then went back as it was snowing hard. I won't fill out much more of the details below except name and contact info. If you like I'd tell you the same thing I basically told here. A long time has passed and although I still remember it, I don't know where anyone else is or even if the camp is still in operation. This is in response to reading the Locals book which I found quite interesting and it is something else to add to you list of sightings. The one thing I found most interesting was the inability to move any closer in both situations and the definitive line where this happened. Subsonic sound I don't know, but whatever it was it worked quite well.
ALSO NOTICED: The smell was present in the second sighting and not the third.
OTHER STORIES: i haven't but some folk say it is common I hear by my reading of books. Wild country, that is for sure. I'm not submitting this for publicity - it is simply for your folk's use and to log another sighting in the area for what it is worth. Call me if you like. I live in the Davenport, Washington, area now