November 30, 2012 by kittynh
Despite being a skeptic, I enjoy watching “Reality” TV shows that deal with the subjects like ghosts and monsters. I also enjoy watching the new crop of Bigfoot hunting shows. I hesitate to lump “Bigfoot” in with “ghosts” and “monsters” simply because many of those searching for definitive proof of Bigfoot do not believe the creature to be paranormal. A minority of Bigfoot hunters believe the creatures may be aliens, simply because they must have incredible other worldly laws of psychics defying powers to have evaded capture for so long.
Most Bigfoot hunters I have met, including the local team from my rural area of New Hampshire, believe Bigfoot is a real creature. They feel Bigfoot’s ability to evade capture, and to stay out of focus in photographs and video, is not supernatural or alien. They are sure it is simply reflective of the high intelligence of Bigfoot. Bigfoot is supposedly a creature so in tune with nature and his surroundings that he can easily hide from man, a creature who has lost touch with the natural world.
Native Americans historically have seen more of Bigfoot as they live as “one with nature” and Bigfoot is simply another fellow creature sharing the bountiful Earth. (I have to admit that’s history according to my neighbor Pat, he also plows our driveway in the winter. He’s very in tune with nature and the bounty that big snow falls bring him and his snow removal business).
I was advised by my Bigfoot hunting neighbors to watch a “real science show” about Bigfoot called “Finding Bigfoot“. I was assured the show was “real science” as they have a skeptic. The skeptic, a lovely young biologist named “Ranae”, seems always on the verge of becoming a “believer”. She often will emote about how “While I’m not a believer, I sure can’t explain what that was!”
I wish she would say “I don’t know what that was, but I can’t include Bigfoot in the explanation pool until I know Bigfoot is real.” For all Ranae knows, that sound or smeared footprint could be a leprechaun with huge feet looking for a pot of gold. As the scientist, she knows first she has to prove the creature exists. One day perhaps she can point at tracks or listen to a howl and say “My that could be the new mammal I discovered the ‘Devius Comantis Magnus Pedis Ranaeis'” (sorry my Latin stinks)
You also figure Ranae knows that if she ever did say “Well I heard some weird banging on a tree and an unknown howl, I’m a believer!” they would kick her off the team and find a new “Skeptic”. The show benefits from the balance she brings, because she reflects what many of us at home watching are thinking. Even my hopeful Bigfoot hunters next door sometimes say, “Seriously, that was weird, but not proof.” I applaud the team for having Ranae, even if she’s a little less skeptic than most skeptics I know would like.
I also like Ranae, as she seems the least likely of the team to die in the woods somewhere. She’s in shape and doesn’t get winded on a hike (the heavy breathing of some of the other team members tromping around the woods with all that equipment worries me, I hope Ranae is trained in CPR). She is also unafraid to camp alone in the wilderness. Since she is a biologist and knows what is proven to live in the wilderness, things like bears and snakes, that is pretty impressive.
Still the team favorite has to be “Bobo”. Other than a sneaky suspicion that Bobo actually is a real Bigfoot that has been shaved, one can’t help but admire his devotion to Squatching. He seems the most enthused and often the most realistic about the teams chances. It should be noted on Bobo’s biography on the show website there is some interesting background material on him.
.” As a teen, he became an avid surfer, a skill set he would eventually use to investigate reported Bigfoot sightings in remote areas of the country.”
I’ve been watching the show for a while now, and have yet to see how Bobo’s surfing skills are put into play while investigating Bigfoot. Anticipation of Bobo chasing a Squatch while catching a wave keeps me tuned in.
Bobo is truly the “reality check” for the team. When the crew talks about setting up trail cameras (often used to hunters to see what animals are in the area) Bobo comments something about setting up trail cameras just keeps Bigfoot away. Bobo mumbles this despite the group having gone to Vermont to investigate a Bigfoot caught on a trail camera eating apples.
When Bigfoot DNA is analysed, Bobo is the one that knows it will come back “contaminated”. That’s just the way it goes with Bigfoot. Bobo often ahead of time what they are doing probably isn’t going to work, but he does have one heck of a great Bigfoot yell. A Bigfoot yell is something a Squatcher does in the woods, and hopes a Bigfoot answers back. Often coyotes answer back. This is fine though, because the coyotes are answering the Bigfoot call because they are excited. You see, the coyotes get to eat the Bigfoot leftovers. So coyotes answering, means there are Bigfoot. I think. Remember, this is a science show and I was an art major in college. I have trouble following the science at times.
I also live in the woods on several heavily wooded acres. I admit that when our local Bigfoot hunting group howls, the temptation to howl back has not always been resisted. (It’s even better when my husband does not resist).
So far the “Finding Bigfoot” crew seems to find few very many large animals such as Squatches or Bears. This may seem peculiar until you realize they are tromping through the woods wearing heavy packs, some sort of metal contraption with a light, and cameras. Bobo has already assured us that Bigfoot and cameras do not mix. Bears I am sure run away, in fact the team has thermal images of armadillos and other small animals running away. The armadillo running away was also a sign that there are Bigfoot, as Bigfoot eats small animals. So since there is Bigfoot food readily available there must be Bigfoot. Why a Bigfoot would not run from a loud howling group of people with cameras, which seems to be what every other animal in the woods is doing, is something only an expert like Bobo could explain. Viewers are informed that Bigfoot is “curious”. However Bigfoot is also “shy”. This is a combination that frustrates any Bigfoot hunter.
Most biologists, except Ranae, would probably suggest sitting quietly along known animal trails with the lights off and well hidden. My friends that hunt know the best way to bag a buck, or bear, or moose, or elk, or even a darn tree squirrel, is to be very quiet. Elmer Fudd knew what he was saying when he said “Be very qwuiet, I’m hunting wabbits. shhhhh!”
Still in the crazy world of Bigfoot, trial trail cameras scare away the creatures, but loud people tromping through the woods howling and banging trees don’t.
What interests me most is the town hall meetings. Every town hall is filled with locals that have seen Bigfoot. A part of me is tempted to ask each Bigfoot sighting townfolk to take a lie detector test. I’m not doubting the word of all of them, but it seems to me town halls full of Bigfoot sightings all over the United States and Canada would results in far more photographs and videos than we have now. I think many people take a sighting of a bear or some other known animal, and confuse it with a Bigfoot. I think any town also has that one person that would love to be on television.
Another thing I find difficult to believe is that Bigfoot is found in as many places as claimed. I wish there was one site where the group says “Really? Sorry, this group of a couple of trees close to a large city and filled with hunters and farmers and watercraft is not where something as large as a breeding population of Bigfoot could live”. I think looking for Bigfoot in a heavily wooded and low human population part of Canada and the US is plausible. Looking everyplace someone has recorded a fuzzy video or taken a fuzzy photograph, and saying “Look trees! This is Squatchy!” is a discredit to other Bigfoot hunting groups that understand the need for breeding populations, sustainability and privacy.
I do give Bobo, Ranae and the team credit. They’ve called out a few really sketchy videos, and admit there are Bigfoot hoaxers out there.
Another complaint I have is how can the show have a pop quiz on the ability of Bigfoot to swim (true of false?) when we don’t know for sure there are Bigfoot yet. The show starts from the premise these creatures are not only real, but their habits ,from eating to aquatic, are well known. If real, the list of what we don’t know about them is far longer that what we do.
The show seems to downplay the danger to humans of a Bigfoot, despite the CGI video of a large toothed drooling Bigfoot played over and over during the show. So far as I know, no one has been killed by a Bigfoot. Yet, the “fact” is expressed that Bigfoot eats moose and other large animals. This makes me wonder why they don’t more often eat pet dogs, cows, horses, and small children (to say nothing of loud Bigfoot hunters).
Perhaps one day, these animals were truly be proven to be real. I doubt if all the supposedly “known facts” such as swimming and moose eating will be facts after the creature is well studied. I also think the creature will probably not be studied by people tromping through the woods. ( At one point Bobo throws a “Rave” with flashing lights and loud music, and gosh darn it, some sort of Squatch activity is found!). Like any real creature, Bigfoot will be studied in their natural habitat with quiet biologists armed with cameras and other equipment, unless it is proven they really do love a good rave and then the biologists will probably bring along disco balls and laser lights.
If nothing else, “Finding Bigfoot” has inspired many new Bigfoot hunting groups. These groups need nothing more than warm clothing, knowledge enough about the outdoors not to die, and basic gear like binoculars and cameras. The more hunting Bigfoot the better. I would suggest a little more sitting and a little less howling, but if Bigfoot is out there soon one of these groups should soon find definitive proof.
That proof will not be contaminated DNA (our local group carries gloves and plastic bags for Bigfoot sample storage), it will not be a smeared hand print on the inside of a door, it will not be coyotes getting all happy when they hear a howl, or an armadillo on the run. It will not be a track, despite how truly close to definitive proof a good track is, and it will not be a fuzzy video. ( It’s going to take Bigfoot breaking into a McDonald’s to make himself and his buddies a bunch of Quarter Pounders with cheese, all caught on security camera, before a video alone will convince the scientific world.)
Truly, it is going to take a Bigfoot captured ,alive or dead, and/or good Bigfoot DNA. A toenail, a clean hair sample, a drop of blood, a tooth, a bone, that’s all science asks.
I’m pulling for Bigfoot to be found. I admire the majority of Bigfoot hunters that refuse to fall on the easy excuse that Bigfoot hasn’t been found as they are “aliens” or have “paranormal powers”. They stand by their belief, founded often on their own personal sightings, that Bigfoot is real and capable of being found.
“Finding Bigfoot” is an inspiring show to all these new groups, though one has to fight the realization that if indeed the show ever ended with the true finding of a Bigfoot we would have known all about it before the show ever aired. Real proof will be the lead story on CNN and every other news outlet out there. The only downside to the show is that the title is misleading, “Trying to Find Bigfoot” is a better title, for now. Still, maybe one day Ranae will turn to Bobo and say “Hey let me test your DNA!”. Then the title of the show just might be “Bigfoot Found”.
(with apologies to Bobo, but dude, you are one big guy!)