Geographical Index > United States > Pennsylvania > Cambria County > Report # 31180|
Submitted by witness Meaghan D. on Wednesday, November 30, 2011.
Nightime sighting by motorist in northern outskirts of Johnstown
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COUNTY: Cambria County
NEAREST TOWN: Johnstown
OBSERVED: I was driving home from work about 2 weeks ago, and my grandma and I saw a 4 1/2 foot tall creature. It RAN across the road about 50 yards in front of us. It was all black, shaggy, and upright. It moved almost like a shadow. My grandma's lived in this town for over 20 years and "never saw anything like that."
It wasn't bulky enough to be a bear, and I can't think of any other animal it could have been.
I'd normally chalk it up to one of life's mysteries, except when my grandma was coming home from dropping me off at work again, IT WAS IN FRONT OF OUR G-DDAMNED HOUSE.
OTHER WITNESSES: Just me and my grandma.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: It happened at about 5 AM the first time, no precipitation, pitch black out.
Second time it happened, it was raining and around 10:00 PM.
ENVIRONMENT: town at the edge of the woods.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Benjamin C.:
I spoke to the witness at length about what she saw that pre-dawn fall morning. The witness was very sincere and articulate. I found her account, and subsequently that of her grandmother to be quite credible.
It was the fall of 2011, and at the time the witness was nineteen years old and worked the night shift at the Johnstown Denny’s. She was also living with her grandparents, and as she did not have a driver’s license, had an arrangement with her grandmother who would wake up between 3 and 4 am to come pick up the witness at the end of her shift and bring her home.
The witness and her grandmother were almost home when they saw something dart across the road in front of them. They had just turned east onto Oakridge Road off of RT 756 when the witness and her grandmother saw an upright, jet-black figure smoothly and swiftly cross the road in front of them from right to left heading north. The witness estimates that it took the creature approximately two seconds to cross the road in front of them. Assuming the estimate is correct, and given the road width of approximately 22 feet, the speed of the creature crossing the road equates to 7.5 mph.
The witness described the movement of the creature as like a shadow, smoothly gliding across the road but she is certain that it was not a shadow, that it was alive, and stated she was “100% positive it was not a bear and not a guy jogging.” After seeing the creature, the witness initially thought she was seeing things. She turned to her grandmother, who was driving the vehicle, and asked her if she had seen the same thing. Her grandmother stated that she saw it as well. The witness wanted to stop, but her grandmother refused, and was so unsettled after the event that she did not leave her car after they pulled into their driveway until her husband turned on all the exterior lights of their house for her own sense of security.
The witness noticed what she described as fur covering the creature, that shined in the headlights of their vehicle. The fur or hair was jet black, with no other colors present. She estimates that the length of the hair on the creature was perhaps three inches, similar to the length of a domestic longhair cat. She is not sure how far away they were from the creature, but it was close enough that her grandmother had to slow down to keep from hitting it. The witness estimates that the creature was between four and five feet tall, describing it as shorter than an adult human but taller than a human child.
She did not see any facial features and has the impression that the creature was looking straight ahead as opposed to at her vehicle. The witness does not remember seeing any arm swings as exemplified in the Patterson film footage, rather they were held close and tight to the body. She does not remember the creature holding anything. The posture of the creature was leaning forward slightly at the hip.
I spoke with the witness’ grandmother whose account echoed her granddaughter’s about the circumstances and description of the creature seen. The witness’ grandmother had her own sighting as well. This was the situation the witness referred to in the “Other Stories” section of her initial report where a creature was seen in front of her grandparent’s house. This occurred later in 2011.
According to the witness’ grandmother, this event occurred later that year, she does not remember the exact date. The grandmother was returning home one evening around approximately 8PM and pulled into the parking spot by her house. Their house was less than 250 feet away from the location of the original sighting. Her parking spot faced a patch of roughly 8-foot-tall lilacs and a maple tree. The lilacs were very bush and low to the ground. As she was pulling in, her headlights briefly illuminated a creature that was inside the cluster of bushes. In response, the creature rushed away from the illuminated area of the headlights and into the darkness behind the house. The grandmother estimates that the creature she saw was no more than four feet tall. The grandmother states that she couldn’t see it clearly due to the bushes, but it was something small, uniformly dark, looked black, got the impression it was hairy, and was clearly upright. She doesn’t know what it was, but was adamant that it was not a dog, not a deer, and not a child.
The original witness also added that the forested area behind her house always made her feel uneasy whenever she went back there. The witness stated that she is not a believer in ghosts or paranormal activities, but she asserted that those woods always had a sense of unease, and she avoided going back there as often as she could. She stated that she always had a feeling she was being watched. Interestingly, when I asked her grandmother about the woods, she said that she would go there when she was a child and play in a stream, and never felt apprehensive or nervous when being back there. The woods in question are owned by a local coal company and are theoretically off limits to public.
It is my assessment of the witness’ report, and that of her grandmother, that these two women saw a sasquatch, most likely a juvenile given the height, run across the road in front of them that October night in 2011, and again in front of the witness’ grandmother’s house later that year.
Looking at the area geographically, it might be surprising to some to see a sighting report occur on the outskirts of a residential area. However, given the time of the sighting, the proximity to a generally undisturbed patch of forest, and the continually increasing body of anecdotal, transient, and conditional evidence of sasquatches exploiting the margins of human civilization, the location ends up not really surprising at all. As seen in the imagery above, the area just outside of Johnstown is very hilly and covered in a patchwork of forest providing numerous covered and concealed routes of ingress and egress. In broad geographic context, just 12 miles to the east of the Johnstown area, are State Game Lands Number 26 and the Gallitzin State Forest, while five miles to the west are State Game Lands Number 42 and Laurel Ridge State Park. These areas are part of the mixed mesophytic forests of the Appalachian region, one of the most ecologically diverse eco-region in North America, characterized by a diverse array of mixed-oak and other broadleaf species. These forests are home to black bear, white tail deer, turkey, and a multitude of smaller species of the eastern woodlands.
About BFRO Investigator Benjamin C.:
B. has attended multiple BFRO expeditions: North Georgia 2018 Fall, North Georgia 2019 Spring, Tennessee 2020 Fall, South Carolina 2021 Spring, and Pennsylvania 2021 Fall, Pennsylvania 2022 Fall, New Jersey 2022 Spring and Fall.
He has also conducted private expeditions in New Jersey, Alaska, Arizona, North Carolina, and southern Georgia. His area of responsibility as a BFRO investigator is central Pennsylvania.