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COUNTY: Apache County
LOCATION DETAILS: Southwest of Cove, Arizona. Lukachukai Mountain range. Approximately 8-10 miles to top of mountain on windy forest road.
NEAREST TOWN: Cove, Arizona
NEAREST ROAD: Highway 33
OBSERVED: It was my first day of the 1981 Navajo deer season. I have hunted these Lukachukai mountains for deer through my teenage years with brother T., uncle DJ, and cousins. I was twenty years old then.
It was about 7 A.M., November 7, 1981 when our hunting crew reached the top of the mountain, southwest of Cove, Arizona. The weather was cold with shifting fog, the ground was frozen from the drizzle, the night before.
Two cousins and I were to walk the upper mountain ridge that arced to the northwest. I packed my day pack and loaded my rifle. By then my cousins had already walked ahead of me, on a well used trail, which rounded a hill to a saddle which splits the mountain range.
I wanted to catch up with them, so instead of following the trail, I climbed up the hill and over. As I reached the top and began to go down the other side I stop and yelled my cousins name's to locate them.
I first heard crashing of oak brush, below me 40 to 50 yards to my left. I could not believe what I was seeing walk down hill on two legs. The oak brush was about armpit high on the thing. By then the smell had reached me. Which was musky, wet smelly hair, undescribable scent. I was shocked. The thought of shooting it came mind, as I watched it through my rifle scope, but it walked to similar to a human. I did not shoot. I watched it walk down, to the big trail below, about 70 to 80 yards and into the forest. I then hurriedly made my way down to the north, towards the forest road we came up on, and stayed on the road back to meeting area to the northwest end of the ridge.
I think it followed, because of the movement I could hear in the oak brush while walking on the road. I shot once to scare what ever was moving, in the oak brush.
What I saw, was a very large black hairy being that walked upright on two legs. The upper body was broad and muscular. The hair appeared coarse. The smell was bad. I can only say, what I saw that day was a bigfoot.
ALSO NOTICED: As it walked down, it tried to look towards me, but didn't turn enough for me to see the face. The oak brush was two to three feet above my head. I'm 5'10".
OTHER STORIES: After that heard of sightings to the northwest of Cove.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Appoximately seven A.M. ; Daylight morning conditions ; Weather was shifting fog, frozen ground.
ENVIRONMENT: Pine trees and oak brush; Mountain side
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator TF Zamiski:
I spoke to the witness on the phone and can add the following details:
• The animal’s coat was longer than fur and looked coarse and wet.
• The brush where the animal passed was taller than the witness, who is 5' 10". He estimates the figure may have stood 8 feet tall. He also mentioned that it was muscular.
• He had a clear view of it, looking down as the animal passed from left to right.
• The sighting lasted about 30 seconds as the animal moved quickly through the brush.
• He returned with his hunting companions later that day to show them where the sighting occurred.
• The witness has hunted in this area many times. He now carries a camera.
About BFRO Investigator TF Zamiski:
Tim is semi retired. He attended the 2006 Arizona Expedition and the 2006 Wisconsin Expedition. Tim helped organize the 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2015 Arizona Expeditions and the 2011 New Mexico expedition. Active Investigator since 2005.