Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Urban Sasquatch Journal: The Urban Study Begins

Links to prior installments - 

Episode 1  (What is Urban Sasquatch?)
Episode 2 (The Original Experiment a decade ago)  

NOTE:  As in last week's installment, all "rearranging" (by assumed Sasquatch) of arrangements are in green highlight. 

Present day 

January 8, 2014
"Casing the Joint"

I'd taken a day off to explore an area where a Sasquatch had been seen and vocalizations heard 8 years ago. I had my doubts about the site because it has so much development around it, even though it involved tens of thousands of acres. It wasn't at all like the habituation site from my past study. But, if Sasquatch existed in this urban location, they could exist anywhere! I had no expectations but to explore and see if this was even feasible. 

I started hiking the paved trail into the park heading east and getting a feel for the signs of urban sprawl, car sounds, airplanes, and the like. I crossed a bridge with a ditch running under it. That made me stop and think about this potential natural hiding place. I was trying to keep an open mind. Sure, there was a lot of forest here, but there was also a lot pavement encircling the whole area.

(photo above taken on subsequent visit)

The ditch had a grassy area that bordered a tree line to the east and west of it. On the northwest side, there was a bridge and about 30 yards away, an upscale gated community.  I couldn't help but frown and study a roof top in the distance. Certainly, at the original site of study, there were homes and roadways and cars and the like, but this location was so much more developed, that it created what I could only call a potential "Sasquatch Island." 

I went off the path and followed the ditch along the tree line heading to the junction with the creek. I kept walking south. 
There were several trails opening into the tree line going east. I followed the first trail, went barely into the woods where there was a small fire pit with rocks, but no fire had been started. Close by, was a one gallon water jug. It looked like the water was there to attend to a fire that wasn't built. 

(photo above taken on subsequent visit)

I turned and studied the way I came upon it. The fire pit was 50-75 yards south of the paved trail that existed for runners, hikers, or bicyclists.  It was in plenty far enough to not be seen, but still not that much off the beaten path.

I moved on further down the tree line. At a certain point, bushes and shrubs had grown out further onto the grassy area near the ditch.  This was approx 10-12 feet. This was an interesting vantage point to the tree line. I continued on down the tree line toward the creek.  

To the east, I saw another trail opening into the woods. There at the opening, I saw two tires covered in dirt and grass.  My mind flashed back to the experiments a decade ago. Bells went off in my mind as I considered this deja vu moment as some kind of sign of tires at the wood line. Just for kicks and perhaps out of instinct, I knocked the dirt off the tires and leaned one against each tree at the trail opening to the woods. 

I continued down the hike-bike trail to the east, heading to the pipeline right-of-way.  This was just past the 2-1/2 mile marker. After reaching the right-of-way, I went off the trail and started hiking south.  The report I had read about a sighting/vocals reported it was about 75 yards south of the paved trail.  

(photo above taken on subsequent visit)

I made my way to the approximate spot. Rain had left it muddy. To the west side of the right-of-way, I saw two footprints. They appeared to be shoulder width apart and facing the east. I rolled my eyes in frustration. I didn't bring a tape measure or camera! I really didn't expect the area to have any promise, I was just curious if an urban Sasquatch could exist. 

As I stood where the prints were and looked ahead to the east and across the right-of-way to the woods, I saw 3 tree breaks approximate 2-1/2 to 3 feet off the ground. Hmmmm....

(photo above taken on subsequent visit)

I walked up to one of them.

(photo above taken on subsequent visit)

When I came up closer to the breaks, two trees were side by side and broken at the same height, their trunks intertwined in a twisting way. They formed a kind of V that pointed like an arrow to the northeast.

(photo above taken on subsequent visit)

I continued on, looking for any interesting signs that looked like potential Sasquatch involvement.  I startled when unexpectedly, a wild boar with tusks, raced across the right of way from east to west. This proved to be a place for plenty of wildlife. 

It was still and quiet. I surveyed the area and decided to turn and head back to the paved trail and head west to the parking area when I spotted a white-tailed deer crossing the right-of-way quickly. I looked around as I traveled, noting lots of signs of hogs rooting.

(photo taken on subsequent visit)

As I completed this first look-see at the location, I found some positive signs; water source, forest, tree breaks, hogs and deer. 

February 23, 2014 
(a month and a half later)
"Followup For Signs of Interaction"

The weather was nice and I took my bike to ride the paths. It seemed like a good way to see what cyclists see, traverse the entire huge park area, and do it efficiently. 

I reached the turn off between the half mile and three quarters mile marker from the trail start at the parking area. At this point, I crossed the small trail bridge and started walking south to the location where the tires were. This was at the east side of the ditch that connects with the wide large creek.

I went to where I previously stood up the two abandoned tires on either side of the trail entry along the tree line in the grassy area. I came to a stop and studied them. The tires were now stacked again like I found them. The larger tire with the rim was on the bottom, the smaller tire without a rim was atop it. 

I took the tires and put them back, leaning against a tree on each side of the trail entry. Then, I looked around and picked up a two pieces of rectangular foam and plastic material. I placed one on top of each tire. Then, to show even more intention on my part, I picked up two sticks and formed and X on top of each foam piece atop the tires. To top it off, I put a large limb in an arch shape over the trail entry. The arch was placed about 5 feet off the ground across several small trees on each side of the trail entry. 

I considered with skepticism that anyone or anything would interact, but my mind was persisting with the desire to engage something. On the ground, I then laid a four to five foot limb with two 1-2 foot long small limbs in a V shape pointing in the direction of my home about 11-12 miles away. 

I then left that area and got on my bike to ride off on the pipeline right-of-way for several miles to the east.

As I pumped along the path, my mind was churning. I considered putting down some potential interaction points and seeing if anything bit. I already decided I wasn't going to encroach on any potential living areas for the Sasquatch if they were there.  I wanted to get off on the right note by staying where the "humans" were allotted. 

After the 2.5 marker, I left the trail and proceeded to a trail entry point approximately 25-30 yards to the south on the east side of the right-of-way. I went about 50 feet into the tree line. There, I took two logs about 5 feet in length and stood them against two trees along the trail.  This partially blocked the path. I was pleased with this and moved on.  

I admitted to myself at that point that I missed the ongoing study with a clan and spent a lot of years studying up on everyone else's encounters and knowledge in books, trekking into the field, helping others from time to time in the field of study, but the idea of establishing ongoing contact with a Sasquatch/Sasquatches had me curious to come back and see the results. If there was any chance they were inhabiting the woods of the giant park area, they would have to have exceptional skills. 

I moved on down to the 3 tree breaks I noted on the last visit. I took 3 separate limbs about 1-1/2 to 2 feet in length and 4 to 5 inches in circumference and placed on all three breaks lengthwise. 

Pleased with myself for having set up a few peripheral spots of interaction that don't encroach on or offend potential Sasquatch, I rode off. Admittedly, I was still highly skeptical that this would lead anywhere, but those tires being restacked did stick in the back of my mind as rather promising....

March 30, 2014

I decided this time to walk and jog the path.  My plan was to approach each of the three sites I had left markers for interactions. These included the tires set up, the logs blocking the path partially, and the three tree breaks where I placed the limbs across them. 

Since my last visit, the two tires were restacked again, as they had been the last time; bigger tire with rim on the bottom once again (this was in the same spot they were stacked before). One of the foam and plastic rectangular pieces was now in front of the tires, like a pattern. The southwest V formation I had placed with the limbs on the grassy area had been moved. The arch limb was still in the same position. The other foam and plastic rectangular piece was on the ground several feet within the tree line on the trail.

What I saw next surprised me!

Approximately 10 feet into the tree line by the trail was a cedar tree that had been broke over towards the grassy area outside the tree line. It was parallel to the trail and the break was approximately 18 inches off the ground.

I tried not to make my mind race to conclusions, but instead I turned and focused my attention to the tires. I left them in their present stacked state, but I stood a limb approx 4 feet in length in the center of the bottom tire rim to the ground and through the second tire.  Then, wanting to make more potential changes for "whomever" to find, on several limb extension short branches, I placed a plastic bottle and a zig-zig cigarillo empty foil package. I then put four 6-inch sticks into the ground around the rectangular foam plastic piece, one on each end and one above and below. On the trail entry arch limb, on a short stubby branch, I put a beer can.

Earlier, as I was coming to this area, on the grassy area were two large scat piles. I stopped to photograph them. As well, I observed a bone of a possible hog rooting  wallow spot. I photographed this and left the immediate area. 

I continued my walk and jog to the east on the paved trail. I got to the right-of-way and went to the east side entry trail. On the  trail inside the treeline, one of two logs that I left leaning against several trees was now on the ground. It could have fallen or been knocked over by the wind, weather or an animal (deer or hog?). I was not sure. It left it as is for now.

I went on down to the three tree breaks where I found something very interesting!  Of the three limbs I left on tree breaks previously, one remains on the SE directional break. The two NW directional breaks with intertwined limbs, now had the limbs I left on both breaks on the ground at the base of both trees, forming a V shape, pointing to the SE. Why? 

I left that as is and added a large 5-foot log standing upright at the two breaks. I left the location and finished walking and jogging the trail back to the parking area.

I was a bit stunned. It's hard to believe I was getting some of the same activity/interaction as I had 10-11 years ago in another part of the state. 

I decided right then that I was going to continue to explore this area and see what else develops. 

***Next Tuesday's installment is "Signatures and Signs" and will contain a large array of photos, exact times, locations and events as this study evolves. 

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