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COUNTY: Pierce County
LOCATION DETAILS: We called the facility Huckleberry Creek-this may not have been it's actual name. Our cadre were Rangers. I found a Huckleberry Creek in my atlas (National Georaphic,1999) in the northern part of Mt Ranier National Park. If I had a more detailed map, I could probably locate it-and possibly the actal location of the incident.
NEAREST TOWN: Greenwater
NEAREST ROAD: Route 410
OBSERVED: While stationed at Fort Lewis (15th Engineer Battalion, A Company), I received mountain training at the Huckleberry Creek facility. The final exercise was called the Alpine Scramble, a "Point A to Point B" land navigation problem with problems to solve along the way. While on the exercise, my squad stopped at a stream to rest and eat. There was a sand/gravel bar going out into the stream. We noticed large imprints on the bar, and subsequently found several large footprints in the soft soil by the stream. They were not very long (compared to some reports)-14 inches-but very wide-about 7 1/2 inches. They were also pressed quite deeply into the soil, while we had to really stomp to make any kind of real imprint. There was about a four to four and a half foot stride between footprints (we had a tape measure). As we were on a tight schedule, we did not spend a whole lot of time examining the prints-perhaps ten minutes (our squad leader was convinced they were a joke put on by our instructors). As we made our way down the stream, we saw an occasional print or mark for a short ways, then they stopped. Whether they went into the forest or into the stream-I don't know-I am not a tracker. Nor could I tell you how fresh the prints were.
An interesting footnote-when we returned to or base camp and were doing an after-action debriefing, I spoke to our squad's instructor about this (our squad leader objected strongly, but a few of the other members were interested); he strongly advised us to forget about it and not mention anything. So we did. However, it did raise my interest in the matter, and I have been reading and researching Bigfoot since then (the other squad members may have talked about it-I didn't and went ETS not long after).
ALSO NOTICED: No. I also did not feel watched, or smell anything, or any of the other reactions commonly described.
OTHER WITNESSES: Six, including myself.
OTHER STORIES: No. I have looked in books and websites,but I have ben unsuccessful.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Mid-afternoon(between two and four, probably).Overcast (I believe it rained later).
ENVIRONMENT: Typical Pacific Northwest woods-lots of trees, sprarser near the stream. There wa a ridge behind us-we came down it to reach the stream, and followed the stream back to our base camp.
A & G References: A&G Pg 64 D4
T18N R10E Sec 27
Follow-up investigation report:
Although there is a facility named similarly near Sunrise in Mt. Rainer Park proper:
Huckleberry Creek Patrol Cabin ** (added 1991 - Building - #91000178)
Also known as S-050
Mt. Rainier National Park, Sunrise
Historic Significance: Event, Architecture/Engineering
Architect, builder, or engineer: Unknown
Architectural Style: Other
Area of Significance: Politics/Government, Architecture
Period of Significance: 1925-1949
Historic Function: Domestic, Recreation And Culture
Historic Sub-function: Camp, Outdoor Recreation
Current Function: Domestic, Recreation And Culture
Current Sub-function: Camp, Outdoor Recreation
I believe the report actually is referencing Ranger Cr. Camp and adjacent airport, 5 miles east of Huckleberry Creek proper.