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COUNTY: Newton County
LOCATION DETAILS: Hideout Hollow Trailhead
NEAREST TOWN: Compton
OBSERVED: My son's father and I came over from Oklahoma to the Buffalo National River area. I picked a waterfall out of my waterfall guide book that we were going to go find. We chose Hideout Hollow.
When we pulled up to the parking area at the trailhead he turned off the car. Our windows were down because we were both smoking a cigarette. At that time I heard what sounded like if you were in the bathroom and heard your dog sniffing under the door. I asked him in a whisper “Did you hear that?” He said “That sounded like heavy machinery off in the distance.” I let it go because I was just grateful he acknowledged the sound.
We started to head down the trail when I realized we left our hiking sticks in the car, so I ran to get them myself. I had a slightly creeped out feeling but didn’t worry about it too much because I could still see him the whole time. Once I got back to him we started down the trail. We were just starting to round the corner that goes to the left when we heard a rustling in the trees to our left. We both stopped started and looked. We saw a huge figure running through the trees. I thought it was a man at first until I realized it was totally covered in hair, medium chocolate brown in color.
I remember seeing it’s arms in front of it as if it was moving branches away to protect its face and its hands were black. I whispered “what was that?” He whispered back “I have no idea” I whispered “do you wanna go back?” And he nodded his head yes quickly. The direction it was going, it would’ve crossed the trail just around the curve. We turned around and started walking quickly back towards the car, both of us constantly looking over our shoulder behind us. I started asking questions to make sure we saw the same thing and neither of us forgot. We agreed it was on its hind legs, it was brown, it was a lot bigger than us and it was fast.
Suddenly something flew fast over our heads (a rock?) hitting leaves and branches. I turned at looked at my son's dad with a “what the heck?” look on my face and his eyes were huge. We ran the rest of the way to the car. I had never been so scared and I wasn’t sure we would make it back to the car. We did and immediately he began second guessing what we had just seen, suggesting maybe it was a bear, a deer, an elk, etc.
I asked him if he’s ever seen a bear run like that on it’s hind legs, or a deer or elk that dark running that smooth, he said no. We went to the Tea Kettle falls area but I was too scared and anxious to get out of the car again, convinced whatever it was could have easily covered ground by then.
A Google search once we had service said only black bears live in Arkansas and I’m positive what we saw was brown. I didn’t notice any smells but since we were talking I also didn’t notice if it was quiet or if any birds or bugs were chirping. I know I have no desire to return to the area, I get sick to my stomach any time I think about it.
ALSO NOTICED: Yes, I heard what I thought sounded like sniffing when we turned off the car.
OTHER WITNESSES: My sons father and I. We both saw it while hiking.
OTHER STORIES: No, it was my first time to this trail.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Daylight, around noon
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Carter Buschardt:
Spoke with witness via phone. Her recollection of the event is pretty straightforward, and varies very little from the original version provided. As we spoke I got a few other details that tie things together.
- This event happened at noon, give or take.
- The sound she heard when they first pulled into the parking lot was more like a "huffing sniffing sound".
- When she realized the walking sticks were still in the car, she went back to get them. The car was parked about 25 yards away from the trail head entrance, and she could still see her companion from where she left him.
- When she rejoined her companion, they started down the trail towards a curve in the trail when they "heard rustling and movement" about 25 yards away in the woods. They both looked in the direction of the noise and saw quite clearly "a giant medium chocolate brown creature running through the woods". It was not a dark chocolate and she noted the differentiation.
- "It was running with it's arms raised up, seemingly protecting itself from the branches slapping at it's face". The "hands were black, with no hair on either side".
- It was headed directly towards the curve in the trail they were headed for which was about 25-30 yards from their position. They both saw it, and instantly agreed to get out of there. They kept looking over their shoulders to be sure it was not after them.
- At some point a rock or limb was tossed their direction which hastened their departure. The rest of the story she told was as it was written.
- After they had time to think about the event after the fact, they were pretty certain they were being paralleled from the car to the event. The time of the sighting was in the 3-5 second range.
They knew what they saw and knew what they did NOT see.
About BFRO Investigator Carter Buschardt:
Carter is originally from Texas & moved to Missouri in 1988. Professional drummer for 20 years. Improv & sketch comic and writer for 5 years. Lighting technician for major touring groups for several years. Experienced outdoorsman and was a trained investigator for MUFON. Studied Herpetology in college. Longtime special interest in Sasquatch long term habituation, burial research, infra sound, language & stick structures. He led three Missouri BFRO Public Expeditions:, 2012 & 2013 & 2014. Led public expedition for BFRO in Illinois in 2019.Participated in Iowa, 2012 Illinois. Michigan 2016. Private Expeditions: Illinois 2011, 2012, 2013. Missouri 2011, 2012 (3) 2013(2) 2014. Iowa 2012, 2014 & 2015. Consulted on two Animal Planet Finding Bigfoot TV shows. Expedition leader in Missouri 2013 (1) & 2014 (2) & Illinois Expedition 2019 (1). Led night ops on numerous BFRO expeditions. Hosted a public Town Hall meeting in Missouri in 2017.