Organizing Several BFRO Trips
Throughout Summer 2000

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Oregon and Washington Trips:

With the summer months approaching, now is the time to mark the calender and prepare your gear for some multi-day trips and expeditions in the northwest. Over the next few months the BFRO's Jeff Lemley will be arranging several group trips into the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Snoqualmie Nationl Forest and Mt. Hood National Forest.

The groups will focus on the "Dark Divide" region, and Indian Heaven Wilderness, both located in between Mt. St. Helens, and Mt. Adams. These areas have a long history of sasquatch sightings and related evidence.

If you are interested in participating please e-mail Jeff at

In the e-mail please indicate any special gear you can bring to the table (see the list below) or any experience you have in investigating bigfoot sighting areas.

More details about the first trip -- Gifford Pinchot National Forest, May 19-21.

A view from within the "Dark Divide", looking south toward Indian Heaven Wilderness. These areas are near the Oregon/Washington border.

Northern California Trips:

For information about BFRO field investigations and group trips in Northern California and Southern Oregon, contact John Frietas at

Special Gear to Bring:

The BFROs field investigation trips are not suited for beginning campers and hikers. We require participants to have some outdoor experience, saftey knowledge and survival skills, in addition to all your own equipment and supplies -- basic camping and/or backpacking gear one would normally need for a trip to these kinds of areas in the given season.

Here's a partial list of special gear which would be useful. When inquiring about going on a BFRO trip be sure to let us know about any special gear you own and can bring with you.


    The current camcorder of choice is any model of the Sony Night Shot series, either digital ($1000) or Hi8 ($400).

A distinguishing feature of these camcorders is the "night shot" capability. It is not a "starlight scope" like military snipers use, nor is it a heat sensing infrared system like police helicopters use. Rather it is a "passive infrared" system that requires small amounts of near-visible infrared to see in the dark. Small amounts of near-visible infrared are usually present when any amount of artificial or natural light is present. The unit has a built in infrared emitter which illuminates objects up to 30 feet away.

To extend the range of the built-in infrared emitter, you can buy, as an accessory from Sony, an infrared booster.


Audio Recorder

    A standard tape recorder from Radio Shack, or elsewhere, will sufficce. Two important features for your recorder to have: 1) a jack for an external mic, and 2) a tape counter: The tape counter will come in handy when taking notes while doing continuous recordings. The mic jack will allow you to use a variety of different microphones.

The best mic to use is any omni-directional mic that is well suited for recording faint or distant noises. Most mics are designed for singers or speakers, and thus try to impede background noise. So don't settle for any old mic because it may be completely useless in the field. A good microphonen may easily cost more than the recorder itself .



    A high power spotlight is useful in a number of situations. Many veteran field investigators will tell you that a powerful spotlight seems to be the best protection from a aggressive bigfoot -- even better than a gun.

A 1-million-candlepower halogen spotlight can be purchased at Wal-Mart for under $20.

Most big halogen spotlights come with an accessory for plugging it into a cigarette lighter. Some models also have small clamps for direct connections to 12 volt batteries. This is useful if the campsite is some distance from a vehicle.


35mm Camera

    Even if you have a digital video camera, a 35mm still photo camera is still a great thing to carry.

Your expedition leader should be informed at the first meeting if you do have better than average 35mm photography skills.

Using a 35mm camera for things that are not moving and do not make sounds (such as footprints and landscape views), allows you to get exceptionally detailed documentation of those things, while conserving precious battery power for the camcorders.


Casting Material

    Do not use plaster of Paris to cast footprints. Plaster crumbles too easily. You want to use some kind of molding cement. Here are a few to types of cement products recommended for casting animal tracks:

  • Ultracal 30: One of the best materials for making casts of tracks. It's manufactured by U.S.Gypsum. Find it in building supply stores that sell plaster supplies to building contractors. Ultracal 30 sets in 30 minutes.It has almost no expansion or contraction when it sets. The cost is about $20.00 for a 100 lb bag.

  • Dental Stone is stronger, and shows greater detail than Ultracal 30. It is also more expensive at $30.00 for 25 lb bag. Dental stone can be ordered online from John Frietas ( or found at any dental supply outlet.

  • Quik Roc is also very good for casting tracks. It's solid and durable, and relatively cheap at $25.00 for 50 lbs. Best feature: It dries in less than 10 minutes. Call around to local building supply stores to see which places carry Quik Roc. Not all hardware stores will have it.

  • Hydrocal Gypsum Cement is identical to Ultracal 30, except that it takes longer to dry.


GPS Unit

GPS units are useful in a number of situations. They are good for safety and unmatched at providing accurate data that will allow you or others to return to a precise location.

The BFRO encourages eyewitnesses to gather GPS data at the scene of their encounter. The two most important readings are the spot where the bigfoot was standing, and the spot where the eyewintesses were standing. That info is very useful when field investigators are trying to reconstruct the incident.

A Magellan Blazer (or comparable unit) can be purchased for as little as $100 at many stores. These low end units suffice for most purposes.


CB Radio

    CB radios (transceivers) are the best option for reliable outdoor communications at minimal cost. CBs will be the standard communication device for BFRO group trips. To participate in large group trips, you must have either a car-mounted or handheld CB. At Radio Shack they range from about $40 for a no frills car-mounted unit, up to the most powerful, 5-watt cell-phone-sized, digital, 40-channel CB walkie talkie, for around $130.


Local Maps

    When exploring a National Forest that you are unfamiliar with, the best safety and productivity insurance you can buy is a Forest Service map. Forest Service maps (FS maps) often show more up-to-date and relevant details than USGS topo maps.

FS maps cost around $5 and are mandatory for anyone wanting to go on any BFRO expeditions in any National Forests.

Safety / First Aid

    All persons participating in BFRO trips and expeditions will be responsible for their own safety and supplies. Bring a decent first aid kit for yourself and your own group.


    Some people do not feel comfortable in the woods without a gun among their gear. That's OK with us, but we insist you limit your weaponry to one handgun per person, carried in accordance with local firearms laws.

If the thought of actually encountering a bigfoot in the wild scares you so much that you wouldn't feel comfortable without an assault rifle, then you simply should not attend any of these trips.


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