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Media Article # 553
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Monday, March 17, 2008

Nationwide Expeditions Continue the Search for Bigfoot

By Victor Medina

He's big. He's hairy. He's back. Bigfoot remains one of the more intriguing phenomenons of our time. Rather than fading into myth and legend, Bigfoot continues to make news as sightings around the world, and America in particular, continue. The evidence continues to mount that something is definitely out there. Now, anyone can join the search for Bigfoot, thanks to a series of expeditions scheduled to be held this year by the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization (BFRO).

The BFRO is a volunteer organization that seeks to learn the truth about Bigfoot through scientific research. A mix of scientists, specialists, and Bigfoot enthusiasts track, collect, and study data about Sasquatch sightings and possible physical evidence. BFRO has taken the next step in solving the mystery by planning a series of over 20 expeditions in 2008 into wilderness areas across North America where Bigfoot sightings have been noted, from Washington to Texas to Florida. In each expedition, veterans of past BFRO excursions join with "first-timers," either Bigfoot fans or anyone interested in an actual search for the truth in one of modern man's greatest mysteries.

Troy Hudson has been involved with BFRO in Texas since 2003. "Expeditions have been going on since early as 1996-97. Expeditions are usually half veterans and half new people," he said. The veterans show the new people the ropes, including how to properly search for and gather evidence. "Evidence is collected that is wide range: sounds, video, physical, etc."

If you think these expeditions are just some excuse for friends to run around the forest, think again. These are scientific endeavors, and most people under 25 are not allowed (without an older companion). Pets and guns are not allowed, and first-time participants are shown how to use the scientific method to study and document any evidence they may encounter. Expeditions are usually four days long and go deep into areas that have a history of Bigfoot sightings and/or evidence.

Members of the expedition will often fan out from a central camp site (tents and cars are used to sleep in) and at the end of the day, they return to base camp to share discoveries. Some who are uncomfortable with camping out drive back into town to stay at a hotel or motel. Once investigators are out in the field, however, it is all business. "The techniques and methods we use are proven. They are structured," Hudson said.

This serious approach to the search for Bigfoot has yielded results. Since expeditions began, over 700 people have participated. Of that number, 35 reported a "Class A" incident, which is a first-hand visual sighting of Bigfoot under very good or ideal conditions. Half of those 700 involved had a "Class B" incident, which could be anything from a sighting under less-than-ideal conditions (like low light) to recordings of sounds. On a number of occasions, expedition members have recorded unclassifiable "hoots," "howls," and other forms of "chatter" that many believe came from a Bigfoot. While definite proof remains elusive, enough evidence has been gathered to make even skeptics wonder exactly what is out there in the wilderness, causing these encounters.

A new phenomenon being researched by BFRO investigators is the discovery of "snow mounds" in areas believed inhabited by Bigfoot. In each instance, investigators find piles of snow encased in piles of dirt and wood. It is believed the Bigfoot are creating these mounds in order to have sources of fresh water. Investigators say the mounds are too sophisticated to be created by small animals or deer.

The hope is that these expeditions will not only provide conclusive evidence, it will build a bond between the investigators in the wilderness and the creatures they seek. In many cases, investigators are encouraged to attempt to communicate with Bigfoot if they encounter something. It's an uphill battle. Not only do they face the daunting challenge of finding a creature in a vast wilderness that does not want to be found, they face skeptics who think Bigfoot is a myth. As expeditions continue, it may only be a matter of time before we all get the proof we want.

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