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COUNTY: Okeechobee County
LOCATION DETAILS: First incident was located in Okeechobee off of Hwy. 98 near the the Kissimmee River near a state park and a few hunting preserves in a place called Basinger. And the second incident was off of Hwy. 70.
NEAREST TOWN: Okeechobee
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 98 - Hwy 70
OBSERVED: I grew up on a pretty good piece of property that was backed up to a pretty good amount of acreage of swampland. My brother, dad and I always went to the back pasture where we would play in the pond which connected to the swamp. we had a pretty good dry season one year an we went back to the pond to see how bad the water had gone down and noticed very large tracks of some sort, as we were approaching the pond first thought was one of the cows had walked through but as we got closer they were human foot tracks but abnormally very large tracks. My dad had a tape measure in the truck we drove to the pond we measured the tracks an they were approximately 29 to 30 inches in length. I'm not sure how big Bigfoot tracks usually are but I've never seen anyone with feet that big. My dad said that it was people tracks but I beg to differ. I'm not sure on how wide they were but my guess was that they were around 10 inches wide. I know when you get reports like this people exaggerate some and even a lot but I'm a 1000% sure on what i saw I've never seen anymore tracks after that, Since my brothers and I are in the woods a lot hunting and I've never seen anything like it. I've heard strange noises in the woods and in the swamp that I couldn't explain or even could possibly mimic but who knows could be anything.
Also this wasn't the only encounter that I've had, It was a couple years ago me and a buddy of mine always hog hunt in the woods on the back side of our neighborhood with his parents. We decided to go for a walk to a little slew we had found while hunting. We gotten about 100 to 160 yards into the tree line the moon was full so the woods came alive. As we got on to the game trail, I noticed something in the palmettos among the oak trees. I told him to stop and get down and be still that I think i see a big hog by the oak tree about 30 yards off the game trail 50 yards ahead of us. He spotted the figure by the tree and we began to watch it. The figure never moved so we stood up to keep moving. When we did it quickly stood up and quickly moved behind the tree we just froze and watched to see if whatever it was would come out of hiding. As we were watching the tree we heard something heavy footed walking around the pepper trees off to the side of us, my friend freaked out and took off running out of the tree line toward the houses. I had no choice to follow after him because I did not wanna stay to find out what it was by myself. As I turned to run I seen a tall figure through the pepper trees, I didn't stop to see what it was but it was huge and wasn't on all fours as I reached the fence. I heard a low gurgle sounding exhale come from the trees, my first thought was a bear but I have never seen or witnessed a bear in Florida. Of course they are here but I've never heard of anyone seeing a bear in the town i lived in, but it was bigger than any bear I've seen. I lived in Montana for a few months and have seen bears, monstrous black bear to be specific but i am 98% it was not a bear I'm not taking out the possibility that it was, but i couldn't see it being one.
ALSO NOTICED: First incident we found foot tracks and second incident we seen somthing out of the ordinary and heard a sound the creature made which was a low pitch gurgling exhale.
OTHER WITNESSES: First incident I was with my brother and my dad and my dad had a video camera to record us playing cause he always like to make family videos and my brother was examining the tracks along with me. The second incident I was with a friend of mine and we were just walking.
OTHER STORIES: No i have not
TIME AND CONDITIONS: The tracks I seen when I was younger was early morning and the recent incident was around 2am.
ENVIRONMENT: First incident was around pastures and wetlands and oak heads, just mainly wooded areas. And second incident was pastures and private wooded areas.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Beverly Back:
I spoke to witness via phone for around an hour. The witness is now an adult but at the time the first event occurred in 2009 he was a 17 year old high school student.
It was just after sunset in the summer and the parents of the witness were having a loud party outside in their backyard. So to get away he and a friend decided to head out and take a walk to the backside of the neighborhood along a creek in the woods. It was bright outside and almost at full moon. They had traveled only about 100 – 160 yards into the tree line and could still see very well. Witness stated that as they were walking he kept noticing very faint sounds of movement in the woods directly behind them.
Upon noticing this they would stop and at the same time the movement would stop. As they continued they then had to cross over a fence which lead onto some private property. They traveled for a few more yards into the woods. This is where the witness noticed a figure approximately 50 yards up ahead of them situated in the palmettos among a clump of oak trees.
His first reaction was to tell his friend to stop, get down and be still. As they watched and waited the figure never moved again so the boys stood up. As they stood up they then saw the figure also stand up and very quickly move behind a nearby tree. Witness stated it appeared very large and very wide and was approximately 8 to 9 feet tall but moved smoothly and quickly on two legs. They froze and waited for it to come out behind the tree.
As they stood there frozen they then heard more footsteps behind them in some nearby pepper trees. At this point the friend was frightened and immediately took off toward the house.
The witness not wanting to be left alone also turned to run. As he was fleeing he turned to look back and saw what appeared to be a very large person following behind him pushing its way through the pepper trees. He thought this very odd as pepper trees are very thick and they seemed to be parted very easily and quickly by whatever was pursuing him. As he reached the fence and cleared it he heard a very loud but low pitched gurgling exhale. Witness stated he had never heard this type of animal noise before.
Regarding the second incident. Having grown up in this rural area the witness is very familiar with the outdoors and has been a hunter from an early age. He is a very proficient wild boar hunter and is used to the sounds and signs of wild boar among other animals found in this area.
He is very sure that he was not chased by a boar and that it was unlike anything that he has ever encountered before.
About BFRO Investigator Beverly Back:
Beverly enjoys spending time with her family in the outdoors camping, biking and hiking every chance they get in the Florida State Parks. She has always made it an important point to share her great love for the outdoors and wildlife with her children, just as her father did with her. She believes there is nothing better than being in the wonderful quiet of the woods. Attended Northern Florida Expeditions 2011 and 2012.