The expedition was truly amazing. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting everyone,
and seeing the familiar faces as well! We had some really fantastic
experiences. As for the activity that Leigh, JT, and I experienced
along with Don and Tyler, a detailed report is being written currently
and will be posted soon on the internal board, along with pictures
from the trip! I can't wait to read everyone else's experiences
as well! Thanks to the organizers for a job well done!
Hello, everyone! I finally got around to typing up a full report
about our experience Friday night during the expedition.
FRI, MAY 18 - Leigh Culver, JT McAvoy and I along with several members
of the expedition decided to walk the Rocky Trail (nickname) to
[a particular creek]. The [creek] bottoms yielded a wider variety
of flora than any other area we scouted. Leigh and Keith McLain
encountered a very small fawn there, so we knew that there was a
deer population in the area.
The bottoms were surrounded by small, thickly wooded ridges that
would theoretically serve as great hiding and surveillance points
for a group of sasquatches. After some discussion, we decided to
spend the night in this area. There were a few small fire pits near
the creek from previous camp sites. Our idea was to plant a satellite
camp in one of these sites to serve as "bait" (ie: build a large
fire, talk loudly and openly, and whoop and knock loudly). Leigh,
JT, and I would hide in bivouac sacks under heavy camouflage around
the camp. Our hope was that if sasquatches were drawn to the campers,
they would have to move by one of us, and we could view them.
Don Tart and his son Tyler agreed to be the campers. They hiked
back to base camp to retrive their tent and supplies, while we prepared
our stakeout points. Leigh chose an area on a ridge above the creek.
He positioned himself approximately 20 yards from the trail, well
hidden among the trees. If the sasquatches were to use the Rocky Trail
to reach the area, they would have to move near Leigh's location.
JT and I were positioned on the opposite side of the creek, approximately
15 yards from the creek itself, in the same area that we had spotted
the fawn earlier. If the sasquatches came in from the surrounding
ridges, they would have to pass through the area we were in to get
to the camp. There was a large pit in the ground, filled with fallen
leaves, and JT surmised that it would serve as a nice hiding spot.
We covered the hole with dead logs, then covered the top with fallen
leaves, creating a near-waterproof shelter that was camouflaged,
in that it's roof was at ground level, and disguised to look like
the forest floor. To anything in the area, we would have gone unnoticed.
The two of us kept radio contact with Leigh and got into our hiding
spots approximately one hour before sundown. While we waited for
sunset, Don and Tyler returned. Leigh contacted us by radio to acknowledge
that they were setting up camp. Once their camp was set up, and
a fire was built, the sun had finally set. Ten minutes after sundown,
I radioed Don, and asked him to [make particular mimicking sounds].
He did, and it was quite loud, and echoed through the area. Within
about fifteen minutes, Leigh radioed to tell us that he heard distinct
bipedal walking from two different individuals moving past him and
toward the creek. He also stated that they sounded like they were
heading directly toward the location that JT and I were in.
We waited several minutes, but never heard any movement. Don and
Tyler told us that they had heard movement near their camp at this
time. After twenty more minutes of waiting, JT and I had still heard
no movement, or any other sounds that implied that there were animals
near us. Don's camp was still active, as the movement sounds persisted.
We decided to relocate to their camp and see if we could hear what
they were hearing. When we arrived, Don and Tyler relayed to us
what they had been hearing. Leigh gave a more detailed description
of what he had heard as well.
I began making loud [mimicking sounds] from the camp, and Don [did
other types of mimicking sounds]. While we discussed what to do
next, we could hear distinct, loud movement on two sides of the
camp. JT and I decided to move towards the sound closest to us,
and look on the ground for more firewood, thinking that whatever
was making the sound might move again. We had only moved about 30
feet from the campfire when JT looked forward, shining his red headlamp
on a large clump of rhododendron bushes and laurel trees. Directly
behind the bushes stood a large, dark figure, that JT briefly illuminated
with his red light. Its form and size could be determined by the
amount of vegetation it stood behind. When JT's light first hit
it, it looked like a large, dark void beyond the bushes. When the
figure moved, it allowed the light to shine through the vegetation.
Once the light hit it, it immediately began to move backward, quite
loudly, but in a calm and casual manner.
We both stopped in our tracks, and turned off our headlamps, so
as not to intimidate whatever it was. I immediately began to whoop
softly at it, and speak in a calm tone. I thought that if it was
a sasquatch, I would show it that we were not a threat. By using
their own types of sounds, I was acknowledging to it that we knew
what it was. As soon as I did this, it very calmly took about four
steps toward us. I felt excited, and JT and I knew we were having
some success. We backed off a bit, and it did as well. We could
hear the figure walking away from us.
Tyler came over with a night vision monocular, but by that time
the figure had moved beyond some trees and couldn't be detected
visually, although we could all still hear it. It seemed to pace
back and forth for some time, and then it stopped. We assumed that
it hadn't left, since we never heard it leave, but had found a point
from which to watch us.
Leigh, JT, and I examined the area where it stood behind the bushes
and found some indistinct, large track impressions pressed into
the leaf litter. We felt like our plan had worked, and that we had
successfully drawn one or more toward us.
After a long period of silence, we decided to head back to base
camp. Don and Tyler stayed behind to camp, and to keep their ears
and eyes open for any further activity.
On the way back up the trail, we ran into Patty Lee and Keith, and
related our experience to them. Soon after, Matt Moneymaker came
down the trail, and we told him about our situation as well. I led
Matt and several group members down to Don's camp. He had a thermal
helmet system with him, but by then the activity had gone still.
Thanks to everyone who planned this trip, it was amazing, and I
hope to see everyone again soon!