Geographical Index > United States > Washington > Ferry County > Report # 57244|
Submitted by witness on Wednesday, April 5, 2017.
Turkey hunters have loud bang on camper at night in Colville National Forest
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COUNTY: Ferry County
LOCATION DETAILS: Witness does not want to share exact location publicly.
NEAREST TOWN: Kettle Falls
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 20
My hunting partner and I arrived at our favorite camping/hunting spot, known to hold turkeys year after year. Upon our arrival around 6:30PM, we noticed previous campers had left garbage, a cooler, and cooking utensils/pots/pans in a pile. Two logs, resting in small pine trees above the pile were cris-crossed in a "teepee" fashion above the garbage pile. We found this was unusual as many years in a row, this particular spot was always maintained - i.e. fire pit always cleaned/put out, no trash, barbed wire access gate always closed.
After driving for 6 hours to arrive there, we didn’t put too much thought into it (other than being irritated that we were going to have to remove the trash left behind) as we were both tired from the drive, and wanted to set up camp. My partner has a ¾ ton 4wd pickup with a camper on the back, which we didn’t remove from the truck bed, but left on. After getting the truck unloaded, and camp set up, we cut up some downed firewood, built a fire, ate some snacks, drank a single beer each while planning our strategy for the next morning’s hunt, then retired to the camper for the night.
At 2:43 AM, we were both jolted awake by an extremely loud bang on the back door of the camper. My immediate reaction was to ask my partner “What the F*** was that?” His response was chambering a round into his pistol. My first thought was “I think someone threw a rock at the camper” while looking out the side window – all I could make out was the silhouette of the trees, with a half moon and stars. After approximately 10 seconds or so he had turned on all outside flood lights, and the interior lights and he opened the back door. After finding/observing nothing outside (no rocks) I noticed that the side window blinds had fallen down and I suggested that possibly the noise we heard was the blinds falling down. Although being jolted awake, we both thought that could be it, and drifted back asleep. We both slept lightly (uneasily) the remainder of the night.
We awoke at approximately 5:00am, and hunted until about 8:00am or so and returned to our camp for something to eat and drink. After having time to reflect on what had happened in the middle of the night we both agreed that whatever happened, the window blinds falling down was a by-product of the “bang” not the cause of the noise we heard. I can’t even begin to describe how loud or forceful the bang/slam was. We can even remember the door latch vibrating from the impact. We began to attempt to recreate the noise by banging the sides of the camper and hitting the awning supports off the back of the camper, with no luck. We could only attempt to recreate the sound and impact by slamming an open hand on the rear of the camper, but it still didn’t quite do it justice. No dents, scratches or marks of any kind could be found on the camper anywhere including the roof. No activity the following night, and left Thursday AM.
Given the lack of any tracks in camp, the presence of a cooler (containing food, beer, energy drinks) garbage sacks with 2 empty beer bottles and food wrappers we thought we could eliminate bear activity as bears are opportunistic feeders – thinking the cooler or garbage would be easier access? Noise from an animal milling around garbage/cooler vs. slamming the door of the camper?
In an area that holds multiple species of animals including whitetail deer, moose, black bear, cougar, coyotes, wolves, we just couldn’t think of any animal that would have the ability to have done anything like that. Not to mention the way in, as well as the day we stayed there was a conspicuous absence of turkey/animal activity or even sign/tracks. Normally hunting our 5 mile square area, we see at least 10-20 deer per day, have seen bear (3 times in 6 years), have had a cougar encounter 300 yards from camp in previous year. While not successful every year, we at least see and get responses from turkeys…not this year. Woods were quiet unlike every year we have been there previously.
We considered the people aspect, but if you are approaching a camper during hunting season we thought the last thing you would want to do is announce your presence with the likelihood that the people inside had firearms (which we did). If the intention was to steal then camp chairs, full cooler, generator, nice plastic totes should have been taken.
All the above detail is provided to confirm what my partner and I are thinking, which is why we are submitting to this site. Our thought is that a single or perhaps group of Sasquatch are in the area, and were upset that we were in their hunting area and tried to make us leave by a heavy open handed slap on the back of the camper – to explain lack of dents/scratches etc? Perhaps previous campers left in a hurry due to garbage/cooler/cooking utensils left behind?
I would be interested to talk to an investigator to provide additional details regarding this event. I don’t want to share the exact location in this report publicly, as it is a place that while probably well known to a few, it isn’t to a lot, and would like to keep it that way. But might help an investigator better understand the area and help debunk or provide validation to our assumption.
ALSO NOTICED: Unusual stick structure found upon arriving at location. Belongings from previous campers left behind. Gate which is normally (always) shut left wide open. Suspicious lack of any bird/animal activity.
OTHER WITNESSES: Myself and my friend. Sleeping. Funny fact: My friend actually used to work with Richard Noll, which actually in part led us down the what if...?
OTHER STORIES: Never - first encounter after spending almost 10 years returning to same location for spring turkey hunting season
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Night, clear sky, 1/2 moon
ENVIRONMENT: NE WA pine forest. Camped near open meadow approx 150 yards to base of sparsely treed knob/hill. In national forest land.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Kevin Llewellyn:
I talked to the witness by phone:
The witness had turkey hunted at this site for eight years. When he arrived with his hunting partner, they found a new cooler with newer utensils and cookware. Two logs, six to eight inches diameter and ten to twelve feet long were in an X shape over a small pine tree about ten feet high. One end of each log rested on the ground. The ends of the logs were splintered and not cut. The two hunters cut these logs into firewood.
The witness describes the noise on the camper as a violent bang that rocked the camper. The door handle jiggled but was not opened. The side window blinds had fallen. At first he thought people made the bang and listened for any vehicles on the forest service road. There is a farm about one half mile away. He did not hear anything.
The next day they tried to recreate the sound but could not match the loudness. No dents were found on the camper. They saw a very small black bear but the witness does not believe it was large enough to create the loudness of the bang. Since the camper was not pushed, but seemed to be slapped, the witness was unsettled by the event.
The witness has hunted since a teenager. I find him very credible.
About BFRO Investigator Kevin Llewellyn:
Kevin has camped, fished and hunted in Eastern Washington all his life. His interest in Sasquatch began when he was 10 years old and saw Roger Patterson present "the" film. He lives and works in Eastern Washington. He has been a veterinarian since 1984, after graduating from Washington State University. He attended Washington BFRO expeditions in 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017 and Oregon in 2015, Montana 2017.