Sherry Malin – © 2002
I’ve been a Bigfoot researcher for a little over three years now. I began my search for Bigfoot one day; quiet by accident. A lady came into the store where I worked with a t-shirt on that said, of all things, “Bigfoot Research Team”, and a picture of a Bigfoot right down the front of it. When the lady came through my line at the checkout counter I just had to say something to her about her t-shirt. I wanted to get one for myself, and I figured she had probably got it at one of the local t-shirt shops in town. Then, the minute I said something to her about it she looked at me for a minute, and said confidently “I’m a Bigfoot researcher, and I am in town to check out a few Bigfoot reports.” I said to her, looking puzzled, “Bigfoot’s in Tennessee.” “You’ve got to be kidding me.” The only Bigfoot’s I had heard about were out in Washington State. The Indian’s in that area called them the Sasquach, or Bigfoot, and they lived high up in the mountains. I remembered seeing the Patterson film when I was a kid of a big hairy apelike creature with a pointed head, long dangling arms, and big floppy breasts just like a woman, heading off into the forest. Other than this, I knew very little about these odd creatures, so I decided to ask the lady more questions about them, and the research she was doing. The lady talked to me for a few more minutes, but I could tell she was in a big hurry to get somewhere, so she put some film down on the counter, and a card with her name, phone number, and website on it. She told me to give her a call if I was interested in going on a trip out into Bigfoot country with her sometime. Little did I know that I was being prepared for one of the strangest, and most fascinating adventures of my life.
That evening when I got home from work, I went to my computer, looked up the lady’s website, and found out there were Bigfoot reports scattered all across the state of Tennessee. That was it! My curiosity got the best of me this time. I wanted to learn more about the Bigfoot people, so I made the decision to call this lady up, and go with her on one of those Bigfoot trips she had talked about. Needless to say, my family thought I was nuts, and made fun of me over it, telling me that there was no such thing as a Bigfoot, much less one here in Tennessee. Well, being the dare devil that I am I went anyway, and boy was I really in for a big surprise!
Gloria took me as far out in the woods as we could get. We drove up and down the mountainside on every dirt road she could find. I was so far out in the woods that I thought I would never see daylight again. She showed me several places where she had received reports of Bigfoot activity in. The first place Gloria took me to see really gave me the creeps. She called it a feeding ground where she had found several half-eaten, dead calves and deer just ripped apart by these Bigfoot creatures. Another area she took me to was where the Bigfoot’s had made a nice big bed out of pine needles and brush. There we found several wild turkey feathers, and some kind of dead animal carcasses lying around in this area of the woods. I realized pretty darn quick that I did not want to be found out in those woods after it got dark!
We jumped back into the truck and headed for another place where Gloria said some campers had been run plum off the mountain by one of those big hairy creatures, leaving all their tents and camping gear behind. By this time it was beginning to get dark, the time when the Bigfoot creatures start waking up, and get to stirring around. Although it wasn’t dark just yet, the moon was shining its eerie glow over the trees, and the water in the creek nearby. I felt like something was going to happen to me here at this place that was going to change the course of my life forever.
We both got out of the truck slowly and quietly, and headed for the creek. Gloria told me that she was going to do some things to try and flush the Bigfoot’s out of their hiding places, and for me to stay close to her, and keep myself quiet. Then, all at once, Gloria let out a blood-curdling scream, and started beating on the trees with big sticks. Well, I froze right where I was! Then, all of a sudden a bunch of them started whooping and hollering across the creek like a bunch of apes. Next, another group of Bigfoot’s started in to hollering from way back behind us, up on the mountainside somewhere. I had never heard anything like this before. They made the strangest sound I’ve ever heard in my entire life! I got so excited that I picked up a big stick, screamed back at them, and started beating on a tree to. They all screamed and hollered right back at me. We knew they were moving in on us, and getting closer. Gloria yelled for me to run for the truck, that they were coming down there after us. I was so excited over hearing them that she couldn’t get me to leave. I would holler at them, and then they all would answer me back. Then, the playing around was over, I realized what kind of danger I was in. I was sure that I was going to get ripped apart, and ate for dinner by those creatures if I didn’t get the hell out of their territory fast. I ran back to where Gloria was as fast as I could, jumped into the old truck, and we spun gravels everywhere trying to get ourselves out of that place!
On the way back home, Gloria told me that she had never got that big of a response out of them before. She said that we must have caught the Bigfoot’s off guard, and separated some of them from the rest of the group. That was why they got so upset, hollering at us like they did. I never expected to have something so strange, and unbelievable happen to me like this my first time out on a Bigfoot trip. Now, as I look back on the things that took place that night, I know that it could have turned into a very dangerous situation for us. If we had stayed there in that area for even one more minute we might have never came back out of there. Bigfoot’s are wild creatures, and you can never be sure of what they might do. I almost learned this lesson the hard way. We were in their territory, and they were prepared to defend themselves and their little ones, if we hadn’t of got ourselves out of there when we did.
I was trained by one of the best Bigfoot researchers around. Gloria knows everything there is to know about a Bigfoot. I have been out on several Bigfoot trips with her since that night. I’ve even had the Bigfoot’s scream at me a couple of times at some other places in that area after that. Once a Bigfoot yelled real loud at me from just across the road one night, and let me tell you, it scared the living daylights out of me! I’ve never liked being snuck up on by anything. Both times there were other people with me that heard the Bigfoot’s scream to. I am still very couscous when I’m out in the woods tracking them now, because more than likely they already know I’m there. There’s only one rule I have now. I never go out looking for a Bigfoot alone. I always make sure I have other people with me.
On one occasion, I was out in the woods with a friend looking around for one of them, and my friend saw the Bigfoot and took off running after this creature. It was all I could do to keep up with him in those woods. What my friend didn’t realize was that the Bigfoot had already made it’s way back around behind us. On our way back out of there, I found signs of where it had been following us afterwards. I believe this Bigfoot was trying to get us separated from each other for some reason, and I’m afraid of what might have happened if it had succeeded with it’s plans of doing this. If anything, these experiences have all just made me even more determined than ever to get the proof I need for the existence of these Bigfoot people. I know for sure they’re out there, and it’s just a matter of time before our paths cross again.
Over the past few months I’ve been plotting all kinds of ways to get proof of the Big Guy’s existence. Gloria has always told me “Sherry, you have to think like a Bigfoot, if you are ever going to outsmart one”. I’ve given this a lot of thought, and I finally came up with a plan that has worked. Duct tape! I figured that if I could put a little duct tape all over the bags of food we put out for him, he is bound to get some of it stuck to his fur somewhere.
I finally talked my friend Sandy into going with me on some of our Bigfoot adventures, and I’m sure that he didn’t believe any of this stuff at first. Sandy helped out all he could, and went each week to help put out food, and to check and see if the Bigfoot’s had taken the bait yet. This went on for at least three weeks with nothing happening. We were beginning to get a little bit disappointed that the Bigfoot’s hadn’t been back. Especially, since Gloria had just put out some bags of food for them a few weeks before, and they had came in and got it. The waiting was the hardest part for us, and patience has never been easy for me anyway. This certainly was a learning experience.
I have written down everything I can think of about the three weeks leading up to us finally getting a hair sample, and the Bigfoot’s coming into the research area and taking every bit of the food we had put out for them. They cleaned the place out, and didn’t even leave a crumb of anything behind. The following pages have been taken from my research notes, and thoughts on the trips we made to the Bigfoot research area.
The first week we put out apples and marshmallows with vanilla flavoring poured all over the bags. I had heard that the Bigfoot’s might be attracted to the sent of vanilla, and we even poured a little bit of it in one of the bags of apples. I put tape all over these bags to, hoping to get some hair to stick to it. Then, we tied kite string around the bags of marshmallows and apples, and then we threw them way up high, over some tree branches that were sticking out a good ways. We dangled them from the limbs just high enough for a tall Bigfoot to reach, but also far enough away that a deer, or other little critters couldn’t get to them. Then, I made a path of marshmallows from where the bags were at all the way down to the creek. I stuck them all over the place in the tree limbs. We even stuck an apple to a broken limb on one of the trees where we had one of the bags of food. This would be sure to get the attention of the animals in that area. While there, I noticed that there were one or two markers, and a bowed tree limb in the research area indicating that the Bigfoot’s had been there. They always like to bow over tree limbs, and put some strange teepee looking markers out showing the other Bigfoot’s that they have been in an area.
Then, we headed on up the side of the mountain to a place where several old abandoned cabins are located. This was the place Gloria said some camper’s had been run out of there by a Bigfoot, and it made me very nervous to be tromping around in the woods up in there. I was glad to have other people with me on this trip.
We found several large markers, bowed trees, along with some broken and twisted limbs. Some of the small saplings had the tops all snapped and twisted up, like something had took its hands and just twisted these trees half way into. I also spotted a marker pointing across the road toward the side of one of the cabins. We went down there to check it out, and decided to have a look around inside there. When we entered the cabin, we found a huge pile of leaves all mashed down like a rather large animal had made a big bed out of it. The screen door of the cabin had also been pulled half off too. This is when I decided it was time to get out of there before whatever it was came back. Then, at the bottom of the trail leading out of there, we found several tree limbs all twisted up, and some of them fresh too. We got out of there pretty darn quick when we saw that. This ended our trip for that evening. We were pretty well spooked after seeing all that stuff.
The second week, we came back to where we had put all the food out, and nothing at all had touched it. Just one little marshmallow, lower down on one of the tree limbs had been nibbled on. I was very disappointed. I thought that surely at least a squirrel would have checked things out, but nothing had been fooled around with, or disturbed. We put out some popcorn in a bag and threw it up over a tree limb along with another bag of apples. We put duc tape all over these bags to see if we could get some hair. Next, we floated a bag of apples, tied to a kite string, out in the water of an old swimming hole in the area. Then we put duc tape on the ground where something like a Bigfoot would have to kneel down and get these apples. Then, we left the area, and started to cross a little muddy creek bed along the trail out of there. I had had a look around in there, before we had gone to check on the food, and found a pretty good-sized track in the muddy creek bed. Something had left a trail of footprints in the mud all down threw there. They looked like large human footprints, but no one would be walking in that muddy brier thicket barefooted. It just wouldn’t make sense for someone to do that. They would have got scratched all to pieces in there. I found the best footprint I could get to, and decided to make a cast of it. This was the first cast that either of us has ever made, and it might be the only one that we will ever get.
Gloria told me that if we had of poured it thin, and left it over night it would have made the toes show up better, but we did the best we could do for the first try. Then, we left the cast to dry, and left to check on a bag of apples we had put out close to the road near a place where some construction was going on. We killed some time by going to an old cemetery in the area, and had a look around. Then, we came back that evening. Dug the footprint up, and left for home. Later that evening, I took the cast of the footprint over to Gloria’s house to have her look at it. She took some pictures of it, looked it over, and told me it is possibly from a half grown, female Bigfoot that has been recently reported in that area.
Our third visit to the Bigfoot research area was very successful. We went to check and see if the Bigfoot’s had taken any of the food yet. On our way there, we checked the bag of apples we had hung up over a tree limb at the road construction site, and we found that those apples had not even been touched. Next, we went down to the old swimming hole, to see if the bag of apples we had floated in the water, and tied a kite string around, were still there. Then, when Sandy grabbed for the string, he found it broken in to, and the bag of apples were nowhere to be found. Something had taken them. There was some dirt on the duc tape, but it was still there where we had put it before.
Next, we went on up the path to where the other food was at, and I noticed all of the marshmallows that I had put out on the tree limbs leading to the feeding area were gone too. I thought that was odd, because they had been there in the same place untouched for two weeks. I didn’t want to get my hopes up though, because we hadn’t even got to the place where we had put all the bags of food out yet. When we got to the feeding area, much to our surprise, everything was gone right down to the last crumb of food, and kernel of popcorn. All of the bags were just hanging in the trees right where we had put them. The Bigfoot’s had come in there and used forked sticks to poke holes in the bags to get at the food. They took all of the apples, marshmallows, and popcorn out of the bags, and the food was high enough off the ground that a really tall Bigfoot could have just grabbed the bags and torn them open. We found hair all over the duc tape, and also some hair down toward the bottom of one of the trees where we had put some duc tape. This hair was course, and dark at the bottom, with a grayish white color at the top. This hair sample is believed to be squirrel hair, but the hair we found on the bags was fine, with a reddish tent to it. We tore down all of the bags, and carefully put them in my backpack. Before we left, I noticed some new markers at the site as well, along with another bowed over tree. I guess the Bigfoot’s really wanted us to know that they had been there, and taken the food. We were very excited over what we had found here in the research area, and we took lots of pictures of the bags, markers, and bowed over trees. This way we could show what had happened that third week. Finally, we cleaned up the area, and left out to go to some new places before ending our Bigfoot trip.
The last place we went to was a field where some small pine trees had been planted, with woods all around the place. I had a look around, and found that a few of the small pines had the tops of them twisted off in a location close to the edge of the woods. I thought this was really odd, and I could not figure out why an animal would go to so much trouble to do something like this. I made a note of this, so I could ask Gloria about it to see if there has been any other reports of Bigfoot’s doing things like this. Gloria later confirmed that there were in fact, reports of Bigfoot’s twisting the tops out of small pine trees. Then, we decided that this would be a great place to leave some food out for them in the future. Also, we could check for more markers, footprints, and other signs of the presence of Bigfoot in this area of the woods.
Then, we packed up all of our gear, and headed to Gloria’s house with all of the bags and hair samples. When we got there we showed Gloria, and another Bigfoot researcher what we had. She told us that it usually takes about three weeks for the Bigfoot’s to come in there and get all of the food. She wasn’t the least bit surprised that it had taken them this long to get it all.
Then, Gloria gave us all some rubber gloves, tweezers, and zip lock bags, and told each of us to very carefully take the hair samples, place them in the zip lock bags, and close them up. Then, she put on gloves, took samples of the hair on our heads, and put it in zip lock bags as well. She did this so the hair that we found at the research area could be compared to ours when it is sent off to a lab to be analyzed, and also, to make sure it wasn’t some of our own hair we had found. In the future, I want to figure out a way of getting fingerprints from the Bigfoot creatures. Regular clear packaging tape might work for this. I have been wondering what their fingerprints look like, and how similar they are to humans, and other primates. I am going to try this method the next time that I put more food out for the Bigfoot’s, and I’m sure we could get more hair samples this way too. As of right now, we do not have the results back yet on the hair samples, but I will keep everyone updated and informed on our findings, and new Bigfoot trips that we get involved in.
The lady Bigfoot researcher in this story has asked me to not reveal her name, or the location of the research areas where the Bigfoot’s presently are. We want to protect the Bigfoot’s from people who might want to do them harm, or try to kill them. Also, just as another precaution to protect them, we have changed the researcher’s name to Gloria.
Submitted By: Sherry Malin