DHS Squirrel
Geographical Index > United States > Nebraska > Holt County > Report # 20870
Report # 20870  (Class A)
Submitted by witness on Tuesday, August 14, 2007.
Sighting and other observations along the Niobrara River
(Show Printer-friendly Version)

YEAR: 1974


MONTH: October

STATE: Nebraska

COUNTY: Holt County

LOCATION DETAILS: (removed at witness's request)

NEAREST TOWN: (removed at witness's request)

NEAREST ROAD: County road which runs east of (edit) along the Niobrara River

OBSERVED: In the fall of 1974 I was bowhunting for deer near the small town of (edit) Nebraska. Not seeing any signs of deer in an area I decided to try another spot.

I drove east of (*) along the Niobrara river. A road which along the south there is somewhat steep dirt cliffs and wooded flood plains with swamps and marshes to the north. There are several ravines and creeks which flow into the river from the south.

About 5 or 6 miles East of (*) there was an area past the second auto gate in which people were allowed to hunt. I hunted this area but left before dark because my car was not too dependable and did not want to get stranded after dark.

Driving back towards (*) I decided to look for deer in the ravines as I past. I came to a ravine about 4 or 5 miles east of (*). When I looked into the ravine (south) I saw a large Gorilla looking thing about 40 to 50 ft away. I estimated it to be about 7 feet tall and had coal colored hair about 3-4 inches in length all over its body. I could only see from about the knees up. It's face was more human than ape and lighter in color, kind of a dark tan color (could not tell if it was skin or very short hair on it's face). It had almost nothing for a neck.

It looked right at me for about 2 seconds. Then it turned around and ran on two feet up the ravine (south).

When it turned it twisted it's whole torso as if a person with a sore neck would do. It turned from it's right to it's left. It also had thrown its right arm accross it's face as if to gain momentum for it's turn or maybe hide. As it turned I could see it's muscles of it's upper back and shoulders ripple. This thing had to be very strong. When it ran it made very little noise, crunching of twigs of leaves. I would guess it's weight to be about 300 to 350 lbs.
I got the feeling that the thing was traveling south to north to the river.

I sat parked there for a few minutes trying to put everything in order. I had heard stories about ape like things out in the area and always just consider them as tall tales. I decided not to tell anyone because I did not think anyone would believe anyway. Many years later I did tell a few close friends and they just laughed.

I know it's been a long time ago but I still can see it in my mind, one of those things.

I had another experience while bowhunting south of (location removed at witness's request), Nebraska in 1995. I did not see anything but am very convinced that something of this nature took place. Willing to talk to someone about it.

ALSO NOTICED: Did not smell anything or hear it make any ape/human sounds.

OTHER WITNESSES: Only myself, driving and looking up the ravines.

OTHER STORIES: I was home on leave from the Army in 1973 when a High School friend and I went out to visit his uncle who ranches on the Niobrara river near (edited), Nebraska. We were drinking beer and just talking about hunting when his small son said "Dad, tell them what you saw that one night".

He told us that one night he was checking for new calves when he heard something behind him, he shined his light and saw two things looking at him. They were standing on two feet and had eyes that reflected red. They took off running on two feet. He said that they were not human.

When I was 10 or 11 (1964 or 1965) I heard a rancher relate a story to my grandfather:

One night this rancher was awakened by a noise out in his barnyard.
He stepped out on his porch and saw a large apelike thing looking over and into the fenced area of his chicken coop. He claimed the thing had to be 8 feet tall. The rancher watched it for a few minutes and then said it sensed him somehow and ran off on two feet.
I think his ranch was about 20 miles Northwest of O'Neill Nebraska.

While in College, (Fall of 1975) a friend had returned to Lincoln, Nebraska from a weekend at his home (Staplehurst, Nebraska).

He told me that two of his close friends were racoon hunting in a swamp that weekend near Staplehurst and their dogs cornered a large ape like thing. The two men were very scared and returned home. The Sherriff and some patrol officers went to check it out.
When the officers returned the two men were told to keep quiet about it because it would scare people. Maybe there is a Sheriff's report on this filed. It would be Seward County.

I took note of it because of my experience a year earlier, but did not mention it to my friend.

TIME AND CONDITIONS: I believe that it was about 1630 to 1700 hrs. The weather was clear and Sunlit however in the late day shadows of ravines.

ENVIRONMENT: 1/4 mile south of the Niobrara River, an area of swamps, marshes, woods of a various types of trees.

Follow-up investigation report:

-After interviewing the witness and in response to my questioning, and consistent with my notes, he provided the following account in his own words of other unusual occurrences.

"In November of 1992 or 1993, I was rifle hunting for deer near (edited), NE. I again was near the Niobrara River. Late in the afternoon, I had shot a doe and failed to find it before dark. The next morning I returned at first light with hopes of finding the carcass intact. What I found near where I'd shot the deer was the following: an area about 12-15 feet in diameter with the tall grass and vegetation flattened as if by a steamroller. In the center of the area was four feet and partial legs of a deer, lengths of about a foot. I picked up one of the legs to take a closer look and noticed it was wet, and had a urine odor. I have found deer and other animals which had been devoured by coyotes and in all cases there was hair, blood, and body parts scattered about. This was not the case here. All I could find was the four legs. At the time I was confused about what I had found but did not link it to what I had seen in 1974.

In November of 1995, again hunting for deer in the same area near (edited), I was returning to the tree stand I had placed that morning near an active deer trail. Before I left the stand I had placed some of my hunting gear (military web belt with suspenders with a small fanny pack, canteen, and flashlight) between the ladder part of my stand and the tree. I was probably about 30 yards from my stand when I heard this loud grunt or sigh coming from a heavy willowed area about 40 yards past my stand. I could not pinpoint the direction from which it came. For some reason I froze and immediately had the feeling something was watching me. After a few minutes I moved on to my stand. I thought that maybe the sound could have been made by an elk which had been spotted in the area earlier that year. Reaching my stand I found my gear had been removed from where I had left it. It was about 3 feet away from the tree and was strung out. I thought that maybe a deer had smelled the tarsal gland scent and somehow moved it from the tree. I ascended the stand and began to wait for deer movement.

While in the stand I could often hear movement and limbs and branches being broken in the heavy willowed area to the south. It was getting to be later in the afternoon and I wasn't seeing any deer coming from the active trail. A few does came from the west towards the stand, none of them coming close enough for me to get a shot. Finally a buck showed up and after a while he approached one of my tarsal gland scent markings. I took a shot at him but missed and when I was preparing for another shot I again heard this loud grunt/sigh sound. Immediately the buck bolted away from the sound. At the same time I noticed a few other deer left the area in the same manner. After a few minutes I descended the stand and left the area. At the time I thought it could have been a cow or some other large animal dying or injured. I also considered it could have been something of the nature of what I'd seen in 1974.

I returned the next morning with the idea to move my stand closer to the west. After finding a spot in that area, I left my bow and gear and went to retrieve my stand. I got my stand without incident, set the stand up at the new location and I placed tarsal gland scent markings around the stand to attract the bucks, ascended the stand to wait. After about 45 minutes to an hour I noticed a buck deer coming through the brush northeast of the stand. When he got to about 25 yards from the stand he froze and appeared to be looking at something on the ground behind my stand. He was well covered by brush and I did not have a clear shot at him, so I decided to wait. After 5 or 10 minutes passed he turned and ran away from the stand. At this time I didn't know if he had scented me or what alerted him. I used my grunt call to get him to return. Immediately after using my grunt call, something ran up behind the stand tree from what appeared to be where the deer was looking. The thing moved through the heavy brush very rapidly and sounded to be very big, breaking limbs and brush as it moved. Instinctively I became very scared and couldn't move. Something told me not to look at this thing. I remember trying to look out of the corner of my eyes and I remember seeing my bow shaking. I was never more scared in my life than then. After what seemed like a long time I turned and looked around the area but could not see anything. I waited probably 20-30 more minutes, descended the stand and left.

About 3 weeks later I returned to the area and found my stand. It had been pulled from the tree and drug into a thicket of brush. I regret the fact that I didn't look to see what it was, but I believe it was something of the nature which I saw in 1974."

-The witness no longer lives in the area but still prefers that the precise location not be revealed. "There's something down there." He says the area is primarily very rural farm and ranch land which has seen little growth or development since the time of his experiences. He has not bowhunted again since the 1995 incident he described because he feels safer with a rifle.

Coincidentally, the day after I interviewed this witness, another unrelated person unaware of this report told me of a family member who had apparently noted a sighting not far to the north on the Yankton Indian Reservation. Also, the Santee Indian Reservation is not too far to the east.

David Petti

  Copyright © 2024