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COUNTY: Snohomish County
LOCATION DETAILS: [Location specifics removed at the request of witness]
NEAREST TOWN: Darrington
NEAREST ROAD: [Road names removed by editor.]
OBSERVED: About 12:30 PM that afternoon (October 13) one witness who had just arrived mentioned when I arrived about 15 minutes after him that he heard a lot of commotion out by the Sauk River that sounded like someone was out hunting with hounds and they were baying like crazy, possibly having something tree'd. This is not uncommon in this area as some locals do hunt cougar and bear with hounds here. Although it is illegal to kill cougars they do "tree" them for sport.
Later that evening around 5:00PM the same witness had gone down the bank by Bachman Creek to relieve himself and when he came back commented that something seemed a little strange and there was a different odor in the air down by the creek and felt a little "creeped out" by it.
We started a campfire at about 7:30 PM. The campfire is located about 20 feet from the edge of a creek running through a sapling filled older riverbed. At 8:20 PM, as we sat around the fire conversing, a distinct, loud, and very close vocalization occurred that literally stunned us all into silence. There were two distinct parts to the sound and overall lasted only 15-20 seconds. The first part lasted about 12-15 seconds and consisted of a whooing/moaning that was very distinct and close, right at the far edge of the creek I would guess. Followed by a 2-5 second pause and then a booming, paralyzing scream that lasted about 5 seconds. The reactions within the group varied with two of us quickly putting the fire between us and whatever was making this sound, the others just sitting in silence. We immediately heard movement in the dark…not loud but obviously something moving from left to right on the far side of the creek (maybe 30 feet away). Then nothing.
One of the witnesses who has lived, fished and hunted in this area for over 40 years swears he has never heard anything even close to this vocalization…and really does not want to again.
The next day we found no obvious sign in the creek immediately out from the campfire. Leaves had started covering the ground so it would have been difficult to find any sign. The next day a friend and I hiked up the creek and river approximately ¼-1/2 mile and found a fresh sapling broken/twisted off at about 10 ft. and the top section thrown out onto the rocks at the river edge about 15 ft away. At the river edge, in a sandy area we found barefoot prints…small, maybe 9” but with strange toes. Not human? Who runs around on a river barefooted in October with temps in the near freezing? After doing a closer survey of the area we found several different sets of tracks in what looked to be 3 or 4 different sizes with the largest being about 17”. We went back the next day and cast several of these tracks.
OTHER WITNESSES: Six witnesses, two women, four men, ages 50 to 83. Conversing around a campfire that had been started about an hour before the incident.
OTHER STORIES: Only what I have read about other sightings in the area on your site. I did hear a while back about a TV show that said the University of Idaho was doing some study in this remote area to the north and east of our location in search of Bigfoot evidence.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: 9:30PM
Clear, temp in mid to high 40's
ENVIRONMENT: Alder sapling covered area of old Sauk River river bed where Bachman Creek enters the Sauk River. The Sauk River is presently at a record low water flow and can easily be travesed for the first time in many years. The area to the north (Gold Mountain) has not been accessable by road for four years due to flooding taking out bridges to the north (on the Suattle River)and the east (on the Whitechuck River). The location is 100 yards from the Mount Baker National Forest to the east and we are at the base of Jumbo Mountain to the south.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator David W Ellis:
I met with the witness on October 21st 2006. I was shown the location of the fire pit and where they identified the scream to be coming from. After several questions it is possible that it was two screams from two animals in the same location. All six witnesses live in the area and are familiar with the local animals. Cougar and Linx have been seen in the vincinity. Their community is right on the border of a National forest. Until the night of the vocalization they were all pretty sure they knew the local habitat. After the vocalization they were not so sure.
I spoke with three of the six witnesses and found them to be open and honest about their experience. They want to know what it was that made that call. I assured them that we do too.
Click the image below for a larger version.
About BFRO Investigator David W Ellis:
Senior Sales Representative for Lightolier / Philips Currently residing on Whidbey Island in Puget Sound Attended several public and private expeditions in Washington State Assisted with the 2009 expeditions on the Peninsula and the Cascades