Saturday, May 22, 2010

What Constitutes a BIGFOOT-SASQUATCH ENCOUNTER? Standards for Perception and Assumption (Part One); BF'S BLOG'S BIOGRAPHY, BLACK PANTHER SIGHTING!


Herein we hope you find our own possible Bigfoot Encounters interesting, and hope our own self-analysis may help to establish certain criteria for evaluating things we see or experience out in the woods, things that go bump in the night. We also would like to notify all of you that our obsession with overly-long posts of late (we can feel that book project coming on!) has pushed our blog back into a more-or-less thrice-monthly publication schedule. Read on! First, a few kudos, some news and quotes....

"Great job Steve. Keep publishing the truth and you can never go wrong."
--Kathy Moskowitz Strain, California BF Researcher

"Keep up the good work. I love the blog."
--Cliff Barackman, Oregon BF Researcher

"Just saw your blog post ...and wanted to thank you. For getting it."
--Autumn Williams, Oregon BF Researcher

"This was a really interesting interview. Thanks for sharing. ... You do like to live on the edge, eh?"
--Joshua Blu Buhs, BF Author and Independent Scholar, Sociologist, Historian of Science.

"I read your review of The Hoopa Project and wanted to let you know I appreciated it immensely. You have to fact check, and if you don't, I think you demean the field as a whole. I am glad there is someone like you out there keeping people in check with the facts and nothing but the facts. I enjoyed both of his books but none the less enjoyed your review for letting me know the veracity of the information I had consumed might not be 100%."
--Bryan, Humboldt County Bigfooter

Images, Incidental: From the "Legend of Bigfoot" gift center compound, Hwy. 101, South of Garberville and Benbow, CA. Other images from our own backyard, hillside forest, which goes on for thousands of acres and hundreds of miles into Squatch Territory for sure. Taken by Steven Streufert, 2008-2010. Remaining images are event or show/website promotional images from various websites.


Just announced by the upcoming OREGON SASQUATCH SYMPOSIUM: a special guest will possibly be none other than BOB GIMLIN! Details have not yet been announced, so check their website (link above) for further details. The picture of Bob below was posted on their web site recently, so it looks like he might really be there! Tickets are still available for general seating at a slightly raised $29.00. We'll be there, and so should you!

Other news regarding the OSS: David Paulides has mysteriously dropped out of his speaking commitment... [EXCISION]... Or perhaps Dave was afraid of seeing US there? Who knows? How odd! (OLD NEWS, SEE BELOW)
UPDATE!!! Folks, we don't normally remove things we've posted here on this blog, but this issue about Paulides seems to have stirred up a few problems. We had heard that there were issues about accommodations and transport for him, and these were contradicted by someone else. We corrected this and removed another epithetic statement someone else had said. We were given permission to post the REAL reason Dave would not be there, and we did. Now we've been asked to replace the updated statement we'd placed here with the following quote instead. We are doing this ONLY out of courtesy to the die-hard and dedicated organizing force behind the OSS. We don't want to step on any toes, unless it is deserved. We appreciate what he is doing, so here it is:

"Please put the following and only the following as the OSS final quote on the matter: The Oregon Sasquatch Symposium and David Paulides could not reach a negotiated agreement as to the structure on how he would attend this years event."

We'll leave it at that, and are moving on. Take it for what you will. It doesn't really matter, anyway. Right?


For what it's worth, ticket sales seem to be doing well now, with or without Paulides, with many planning to attend, especially with Gimlin said to be "expected" to be there.



Also... more shenanigans from Tom Biscardi's SEARCHING FOR BIGFOOT, INC.? Did JAVA BOB really retire from the group, or was he trying to spy on STEVE KULLS in a secret undercover operation? Read about the bizarre interactions on the SQUATCHDETECTIVE BLOG.
One may also listen to the BlogTalk Radio show through the link on the Kulls link above... in fact, it should start playing automatically on either page. Will this bizarre stuff ever end? We reserve comment, for now.


Apparently the OHIO BIGFOOT CONFERENCE AND EXPO 2010 (read the schedule summary via the Bigfoot Field Reporter site), organized by Don Keating at Salt Fork State Park, May 14th-16th, was a big hit this year. It apparently set attendance records at over 600 people, with folks overflowing into the lobby. We have been trying to get good reports as to what happened, but so far nearly all the reports are about the people there and the food they ate, not the information covered by the speakers. It seems it was mostly a social event, as all the the images seem to be of the folks sitting in restaurants or at BBQ picnics eating big plates of chow. Bob Gimlin was there, and wooed the entire crowd with his character, humor and sincerity. Tom Yamarone and his BardSquatching minstrelsy, too, seems to have been even a bigger hit than the grub at the lodge. Talking with Tom the other day we were told that there was nearly NO anger, competition, or dissension at this meet-up. How UNUSUAL! Could this be the future of Bigfooting? We hope so.

We wish we could have gone, but it seems that the Oregon event will be even BETTER with Gimlin now possibly attending, and Paulides out of the picture.
Listen to HENRY MAY's HBM's CRYPTO-CORNER on BlogTalk for the best recap we've found so far on the event. It lasts for an hour of streaming audio with the so-called "Walking Squatchopedia" himself.

Here is an ARTICLE about the Conference from a local paper. Thanks for the tip, Tom Yamarone!


Even stranger than a totally peaceful Bigfoot conference is the creatures that have been haunting the edge of the children's playground area at TRINITY VALLEY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, where our own daughter attends. They have seen a BLACK MOUNTAIN LION several times, lurking on the edge of the woods there, watching the kids at play.

Now, these mountain kids have all seen bears before, and would surely know the difference. Many normally-colored mountain lions have been seen there recently, including one mother with two juveniles. Scary! And the Department of Fish and Game say that they cannot shoot one until it attacks first. Is that insane, or what? We do not advocate the harming of wildlife, but hey, couldn't the school put of a ten-foot fence back there? Eh?

Parents are up in arms. We ourselves take it with just a small grain of salt: there have also been demons and aliens sighted on-campus there, by the "Mystery Club," of which our daughter is one of the founding members. It is undeniable, though, that there are a number of these panthers stalking the school campus. Teachers and administration have seen them, too. Scary, indeed!

More details will be coming in our future blog entries, so check back.
Late last night we sent this information to Loren Coleman, of, and the next morning he posted an article about it.  Read it here:
It is amazing how quickly things can become global news.



Our Own Experiences, under the Microscope....  PART ONE

"Twenty-four hours a day I have doubts--it drives me crazy. But the Sasquatch business is so intriguing that I can't give it up, come hell or high water. I've sunk so much time and effort in it now that I must go on searching. Besides, above all else, I want to know the answer. In the Sasquatch business you have to be crazy or dedicated. On one side you have all the big scientists in the world, the game biologists, the press and all the so-called sane people. An on the other side you have a nut like me. But look at it this way--once upon a time scientists didn't believe the world was round or that man would get to the moon."
--Rene Dahinden, BF Researcher, 1973 (from a newspaper article, recently posted on

“They’re shaking their heads at me, and I’m shakin’ my head at them. It’s REAL, end of story.”
--James "Bobo" Fay, California BF Researcher, BFRO Member

For those of us who have not had an undeniable, irrefutable, face-to-face sighting of the large, hairy, cryptid hominoid, it is sometimes difficult to be utterly and absolutely sure of ourselves when it comes to Bigfoot. We ourselves, despite all of this time looking into the phenomenon, and hearing endless reports from witnesses, can say no better than that we are approximately 95% a believer. There is always the nagging possibility that we are, perhaps, just crazy after all. Why believe in something that we cannot absolutely prove, something we can't just go out and necessarily find if we want to? Could it be that this whole thing was born from a joke, and perhaps has continued all of these decades simply as a congregate collection of mis-perceptions and hallucinations combining with myth and legend generated by the popular media? Well, we think not; but we strive endlessly to be sure of things as we proceed as we ever do off into the realms of the unknown and the great Mysteries of the world, the mind, of being itself. 

What follows are some preliminary thoughts we hope will lead to a larger paper on Blobsquatching. We'll look at our own possible Bigfoot encounters, from the obviously false fleeting visions to more suggestive and convincing experiences that cannot just be explained away.

Recently someone we know fairly well claimed a face-to-face encounter with a Bigfoot up in the Trinity County mountains. At a distance of about 30 feet he stood before one and even spoke to it. The encounter lasted about two minutes before the creature (described as being much more like a man-like Neanderthal than an ape) turned and retreated back into the woods. Now, we wish we could have such an extended encounter. It would provide so many answers, as it has for this witness who no longer feels the need to prove that the Sasquatch exists. However, how can we, personally, know for sure? Maybe it was a tall tale, a lie, a self-delusion? None of these options seem, to us, very likely. The witness seems very sincere and sane. But, despite it all, the lingering questions of the human mind and perception and individual differences and motivations persist.

Even if we see such a thing ourselves, are there not some doubts that can remain about our own perceptual processes? Many who have seen a Bigfoot report a confusion of their previous reality systems, some even questioning their own minds and sanity. Sometimes there is even a feeling of having been somehow cursed or hexed--so great is the shock to the psychological system--a phenomenon especially notable in the old Native American recountings (see the book, Raincoast Sasquatch for examples). Others become serious true believers and advocates for the cause of Bigfoot, and spend their lives in pursuit of another encounter.

Not to get too close to issues of "multi-dimensionality" and mystical propositions (which are better left alone when one is trying to prove something), we think it can clearly be said that there is something powerfully strange about Bigfoot encounters, that somehow they exist outside of not only our known sense of the world, but also trigger a part of the mind with which we are fairly unfamiliar. Sighting encounters are not usually "normal" in the sense in which we see an elk or a bear. There is something odd about them, it seems, that triggers not only our vision but also something in the mind that is ambiguous, unclear, and yet deeply powerful. Confusion and conviction can occur at once, throwing the normal control we have over our own minds and reality somewhat into doubt. Also, how do we account for the differences in perceptions, even within the category of "Class A" sightings? How can one person see an ape, and another see some kind of proto-human cave man? And what is the real difference? Obviously, our perceptions are based not only on raw input, but in large part are formed of individual perspectives and interpretive biases.

Before we get into our own experiences, we'd like to note the classification system devised by the BFRO. BFRO uses "Class A," "Class B," and "Class C" categories to divide the most convincing reports from those that are merely suggestive, second hand or historical. To summarize, we quote in part:
"Class A reports involve clear sightings in circumstances where misinterpretation or misidentification of other animals can be ruled out with greater confidence. ... Incidents where a possible sasquatch was observed at a great distance or in poor lighting conditions and incidents in any other circumstance that did not afford a clear view of the subject are considered Class B reports. ... Most second-hand reports, and any third-hand reports, or stories with an untraceable sources, are considered Class C, because of the high potential for inaccuracy."
To these we would like to add our own somewhat humorous classes: "Class D" and "Class F," as well as "Class X." In our proposed Class D category would fit any indeterminate experience that though not fully known could have been a Bigfoot encounter. Often, an experience in this realm can FEEL like a Class A encounter to the experiencer; but because that thing falling to the forest floor could have been an acorn falling from a tree, and not something thrown by a Sasquatch, we have to be circumspect in our assumptions and reactions. This would also have to apply to unidentified animal calls heard out in the spooky hills at night. Though we have pretty convincing sound recordings that we think might be Bigfoot-originated, we just can't say they are so without some corollary evidence such as footprints or a sighting of the creature actually vocalizing or wood-knocking.

In Class F we would group all of those that are obvious hallucinations, products of inner mental problems of the witness, or hoaxes (such as anything seen in the presence of Tom Biscardi). In Class X we would group all experiences that are just plain "weird," that seemed perhaps hyper-real to the witness, but may include unknown factors of reality and perception that would otherwise be termed "metaphysical" or "paranormal." We distinguish these from the sequential lettering simply because we in no way would like to deny that they happen and that they may be "real" in a way we just cannot currently comprehend. Many things we now consider as having the "X-factor" may indeed someday be proven scientifically, and may become part of our ordinary reality. For current science, proceeding as it does by incremental induction, experiment and hypothesis, these things are just simply out-of-category. That does not mean they are not real. (And that does not mean there is anything wrong with science--that is the way it is supposed to work.)

It might be helpful at this point to quote Arthur C. Clarke's three "laws" of prediction, from his essay, "Hazards of Prophecy: The Failure of Imagination":

1.When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is probably wrong.
2.The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.
3.Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

Or, as Sci-Fi writer, Larry Niven, put it in corollary to the last point, "Any sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology."

We have seen "Bigfoot," along with a whole lot of other strange monsters, many times. That is, while driving for 12 hours through the night--one's mind and eyes tend to grow tired or bored, and strange forms begin to appear. Once we thought we saw a man in a white shirt walking in the highway--it turned out to be a plastic grocery bag blowing in the wind. We've seen many a Bigfoot standing in the tree-line, or moving in the shadows, or even in the middle of the road. We've also seen demons, aliens and very large white rabbits. Obviously, all of these are almost certainly "Class F" in nature. Though one could have been a Bigfoot, we seriously doubt any were.

A few times we have gone out into the woods with people from out of town, and we found that sometimes just a nut falling from a tree or a deer moving in the brush is enough to raise the pulse and get these folks believing that Bigfoot are everywhere. This is a known condition: SQUATCH-ON-THE-BRAIN; or as we term it,"Squatchlucination," where the desire to see a Bigfoot overrides the natural perceptual skepticism and gives rise to monsters from the Goblin Universe (as Dr. John Napier termed it). 

If one lives in a natural, forested area long enough one learns just how many strange noises and creatures are out there in the night. When we first moved to Willow Creek we found ourselves hearing the horrible shrieks of demons in the hills at night. These turned out to be foxes, however horrifying within the imagination. One night the most horrible screams were heard, complete with horrid thrashing about in the brush. Though it was one of the most deeply terrifying sounds we've ever heard come from an animal, it turned out to be two raccoons fighting (or mating?). Go figure. There are owls, doves, squirrels, woodpeckers, and so many other beings that make noises that could be construed as Bigfoot. One has to learn to rule these out. Now when we hear such sounds while outside on our porch we don't even jump; though we do listen closely, if not to see Bigfoot then to understand what interesting things are living out there, or maybe to see a mountain lion or a bear. We have seen both of the latter on our own dirt road recently. However, there are other things that just don't fit into these "Class D" boxes.

There are much better cases that are very  convincing, even though they fall just short of an actual sighting. Here is how we wrote about our own very close, non-sighting encounter with something big and wild in our very own backyard, June, 2008. We can't explain it at all, save with the Sasquatch hypothesis. We live at the top of [excised for personal security after threats of violence against this blogger, July 3, 2011], in a [excision] at the dead end of the road, near the top of the [excision] Ridge which is [excision] from Brush Mountain Lookout's ridge and Friday Ridge Road to the [excision]. There have been numerous recent Bigfoot incidents reported out there lately....

"In the dark of late night/early morning something came down the hillside up from my cabin. Sitting smoking out on my enclosed porch I thought at first it was just another deer coming to eat my lettuce and chili peppers. I heard what sounded like a tripping sound in the brush, some big thing making a crack and crunch in the underbrush, followed by three distinct bipedal "whump, whump, WHUMP" footfalls. These were very heavy, thunderous things, to the degree that I could feel the concrete under my feet on the porch firmly vibrate about 30 yards away from the creature. This was followed by a heavy crash of something falling into the brush below. This was no bear, sure wasn’t a deer—I’ve seen and heard these critters up on my road. And if human it would have had to have been an incredibly big or obese man. And why would a big human be out walking around in the dark, dead end, dirt road mountainside, middle-of-nowhere woods at nearly three in the morning? I tried to observe it, but it crept back into the woods a little ways beyond the porch light, and then did not move at all. It did not flee farther.
My flashlight was inadequate in power and batteries to pursue or see it. I stood there at the edge of the woods for about 15 minutes waiting for any sound or sign. None. I didn't want to pursue and scare it off, or get eaten by whatever it was. Then I decided to duck back into the cabin where I could continue listening and looking without being seen. I knew it was still out there. Once inside for a few moments I heard movement, as the thing went down into the neighboring vacant house’s yard. Through the open window I heard two under-the-breath grunting sounds, something like a bear’s growl crossed with a pig’s snort. Quickly outside I was once again unable to spot anything. The next day I saw a depression in the weeds where the thing had fallen down. There were two further depressions in the plants that looked a lot like big footprints. I could see some metal pipe and wooden construction debris under the herbage where the thing had apparently gotten hung up. Whatever it was I cannot say; and whatever it was it was very big, and incredibly sly. It escaped into the dark of night without another trace, but its impact upon the ground and upon me was undeniable. For what it’s worth, it FELT like a sasquatch.”

As is often said: Examine the Witness, not just what was witnessed. In the interest of that, please see the Biography below for further clues.

TO BE CONTINUED NEXT TIME! This one just got too long, so look for PART TWO in a week or so.

Images, above: the forest line in our backyard, very squatchy! Photo by Steven Streufert. Also, a Google Earth view of our road, to the left of the photo, which is completely surrounded by woods.



Found in the Files:

A Small Biography we wrote before our appearance on the SquatchDetective internet radio show. Who knows? Maybe some of you actually might be interested to know just who "we" are, eh?

Steven Streufert blogs about Bigfoot at Bigfoot's bLog,, and runs a general purpose used book shop, Bigfoot Books, in Willow Creek, CA, the heart of Bigfoot Country.

In the usual way of kids of the seventies, he read through the paranormal section of his local library, but was especially intrigued by the classic books on Sasquatch, particularly those of John Green. Through such shows as In Search Of... the interest grew. He first saw the Patterson-Gimlin film at a local drive-in, and it has apparently never ceased to replay in his mind.

Born in Milwaukee, WI, Steve grew up in Santa Barbara, CA, and then essentially followed the redwoods and the wilds to Santa Cruz, and then to Humboldt County. After studying Literature at UCSC and then Humboldt State University, he achieved two MA degrees. While working in antiquarian book shops he became enamored with the mysteries of the past, and listened to the Art Bell Show nearly every night. These two alternate forces eventually led to a disillusionment with academia. Faced with the choice of an urban professional life, Steve chose to remain in the woods and seek a free and alternative means of living. After completing his school work he found his mind opening to other things that had long been buried by theory and philosophy: the things in the woods, and those strange Bigfoot statues in Willow Creek began to call.

An obsession with bears and the wild combined with a constant interest in unexplained things led to the creation of the humorous Church of Bigfoot, Scientist, but also to a reconsideration of the possible reality of that manlike creature said to lurk in those hills. An encounter in 2000 with something big and brown moving through dense and deserted overgrown forest land in the hills outside his cabin in Blue Lake gave him pause. Judging from the way the dogs reacted, and the heaviness of the crashing in the brush as the thing moved away, only a vague brown head seen fleetingly moving through the understory, he found himself thinking, WHAT IF....

Though he moved to Willow Creek in 2001 with only a vague knowledge of the things that had gone on there in the fifties and sixties--not even knowing where Bluff Creek was--living there provided a nearly constant Bigfoot exposure. As he likes to say, "People search the world over for the mysterious Sasquatch, but in Willow Creek we see Bigfoot every day." He attended the International Bigfoot Symposium there in 2003, and found himself convinced by the evidence, but he remained skeptical and analytical about the human dimensions of the phenomenon.

After founding his shop in 2005, he found himself increasingly meeting Bigfoot researchers and field investigators. Al Hodgson, still living in Willow Creek, was the first to show up. Pretty soon everyone from James Bobo Fay, Tom Yamarone, Cliff Barackman, Robert Leiterman, Joyce Kearney, Matt Moneymaker, Jeff Meldrum, and many others were visiting his shop. He also increasingly found himself the recipient of reports of sightings and footprint finds of Bigfoot coming from locals (including the Native Hupa and other tribes), as well as reports from the researchers. Now he increasingly finds himself in the old role of Al H., seemingly bombarded by Bigfoot culture and reports of its activity in the area.

Steve first published on Bigfoot in the North Coast Journal (Road to Bluff Creek: With the Faithful on the Sasquatch Stations of the Cross), and then started blogging about all of this in 2008. Feeling that having read about 70 books on the subject finally left him qualified, and feeling that there was a role in the field for a critical voice that could address local issues as well as the larger international controversies, he couldn't resist. At first he wondered how he could blog only about Bigfoot, but now finds that he has to exclude a large portion of what he hears to keep a focus on important issues.

He has been up in the Bluff Creek area a large number of times now. In the summer of 2008 something big and heavy came crashing down the hillside behind his small cabin, which sits at the end of a dirt road just south of Willow Creek. He can't explain what happened in any other way than to say, it HAD to be a Sasquatch.

"Alas! Why does man boast of sensibilities superior to those apparent in the brute; it only renders them more necessary beings. If our impulses were confined to hunger, thirst, and desire, we might be nearly free; but now we are moved by every wind that blows and a chance word or scene that that word may convey to us."
--Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, in Frankenstein, or, The modern Prometheus


Me told hu-man all be nice in Ohio. Me decide me be nice, too. Me hold up bouquet of flower to first Bigfoot hunter me see. So come out here and give me hug. Me in Bluff Creek at secret spot near Bluff Creek Resort dumpster. Me jump out, scare, then hand you flower. Me so nice me even give you big hug, maybe crush you flat as river rock. Maybe it last, me change name this thing me write to Happy Bigfoot Speak. Or maybe Peace Brother BF. Me smoke green plant grow up here. Me learn hu-man word, "Irie," and me feel Jahlove. Who this Jah, anyway?

This weblog, website, soapbox, or whatever you call it is copyright 2010, Steven Streufert, Bigfoot Books Intergalactic. Sharing and borrowing is allowed (and often practiced by us, too) if you give full credit and citation, and a fair and nice link back to our page. Spread the word! Thanks!