Geographical Index > United States > Oregon > Clatsop County > Report # 10097|
Submitted by witness on Sunday, December 26, 2004.
Skateboarders have encounter near Fort Stevens
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COUNTY: Clatsop County
LOCATION DETAILS: Somewhere on the hike/bike trails between the KOA campground (Warrenton) and Fort Stevens. It was on the more heavily wooded inland trails, not the one that goes to the beach (which is pretty grassy.)
NEAREST TOWN: Hammond
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 101
OBSERVED: On Labor Day weekend 1993, some friends and I went camping for the weekend at a KOA campground near Fort Stevens, OR. In the late afternoon on the second day we were there, a group of five or six of us decided to skateboard on the bike trails between the campground and the Fort. We went to the Fort, walked around and looked, stayed for maybe an hour, and decided to head back to the campground. On the way back, I and one other skated about forty or fifty paces ahead of the others, when we noticed they had stopped. We got off our boards and walked ahead, so the others could catch up with us. We walked around a blind corner on the trail when we heard what sounded like a high pitched scream. My friend said, "That sounds like a kid." So we ran down the trail, assuming someone was hurt. While we were running, we heard a series of grunts, very low and very close. They sounded almost like a hog, only longer, and much louder and lower pitched. We stopped running, and I put my hands on my knees and crouched down, looking off the trail all around us to try to see where the sounds were coming from. Then I saw an animal about five feet off the trail, in the brush, approximatly 10 yards away from us, in the direction we had come from. We had run right past it. It was very hairy, and black, and at first glance, I thought it was a black bear(which I've seen before). But then it stood up and I realized it was crouching. The guy I was with was 6'2", and it was a little taller than him. It swung around and began to run away from the trail into the brush. It ran like a man, much too agile to be a bear, and completely upright, swinging its arms in front of it as it ran to move the heavy brush out of its way. It didn't lumber side to side like a bear does when it stands on its hind legs. I remember being amazed after the incident that it could move so fast. Its speed was really amazing. It took about five very big strides into the brush, and we couldn't see it anymore. We could hear it running through the brush, though. There were a lot of sticks and deadfall on the ground, and the underbrush was pretty thick, so it made a hell of a lot of noise. The sound didn't get very far away from us, and then it just stopped. We ran up to where it had been crouched next to the trail, and stared into the brush for a couple of minutes, but we saw and heard nothing else. Then we got so scared we started running back to where the rest of the party was. The rest of the party laughed at us when we told them the story, so all of us stopped where we had seen the animal. We looked for tracks, or broken undergrowth, but there was so much dead brush on the ground we couldn't even tell where the thing had been crouched in the first place. To this day I remember what the animal looked like, though. It was between 6 and 7 feet tall, and had it been a man, I would have called his weight at about 270. Not great big, but still pretty big. It definitely stood upright like a bipedal animal, and it had pretty long arms with elbow joints. Its legs didn't look all that long, but it had knees, and it ran like a man, but extremely fast. It had black hair which was pretty long. Its back was darker colored than its front. It was late afternoon in early September, the sun was on it, and it was real close to us, so I got a pretty good look at it, however briefly. I can't stress enough how amazingly fast this thing was. No way it could have been a bear.
ALSO NOTICED: The sounds this thing made were pretty distinct.
OTHER WITNESSES: Myself and one other guy. We were running up the trail and ran right past it.
OTHER STORIES: No. I'm from Skamania County, Washington, and this is the only time I had ever been to the area. I've heard lots of reports from my home area, but I had never seen or heard anything like this before.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Late afternoon, about 2 hours before dusk. Good light, sunny, fair weather.
ENVIRONMENT: Just off a paved bike trail, in pretty thick brush with a lot of deadfall on the ground.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Dr. Wolf H. Fahrenbach:
The witness described the initial scream as fluctuating, high in pitch, but with some guttural roughness to it. The growl heard from close up he imitated convincingly and its sound was reminscent ot the Sierra Tape growls. He described them as similar to those of a snorting hog, but longer in duration, louder and deeper in pitch.