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COUNTY: Crawford County
LOCATION DETAILS: Hwy 8 - Thurman Lake Road area
NEAREST TOWN: Steelville, MO
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 8 - Thurman Lake road
OBSERVED: I was camping by myself on a friend's private property near the Meramec River in Steelville, MO (Crawford County). I was getting ready to go to bed in my tent when I heard leaves and twigs on the ground crackling in the woods a few yards away, I thought it might be deer. I got in my tent, which was a tall tent, about 10 feet tall and left my lantern on outside. I was starting to fall asleep, when I heard something big coming out of the woods, I was Paralyzed, I saw the giant shadow on my tent from the lantern, it was about 8 and a half feet tall with broad shoulders, I thought to myself this is not a black bear, I was about 5 feet away from where my food containers were and my cooler. It opened my food containers and started eating my bread, I heard low growling, there were teeth marks found the next day, it went through my cooler, dumped it over and stole my meat, like pork and beef steaks and then ran into the woods. I heard some vocalizations down near the river. I could not sleep the rest of the night. The next day I went down to the river on one of the river sand islands and found some big foot prints, I wish that I had a camera with me, but I did not, I kept it to myself all these years for fear of ridicule.
ALSO NOTICED: See report
OTHER WITNESSES: 1
OTHER STORIES: yes, many
TIME AND CONDITIONS: Late night, early morning
ENVIRONMENT: Oak forest, Meremec River, hilly terrain
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Chris Callahan:
I spoke to the witness via telephone and the following can be added to the narrative:
Growling was heard when the meat was discovered.
It was a clear night with a quarter moon and pleasant camping temperatures.
Whooping and tree knocks were heard down at the riverbank (50 yards from the campsite) after the visitation ended. These lasted around an hour.
16 inch footprints (estimated) were discovered the following morning. The witness wears a size 8.
About BFRO Investigator Chris Callahan:
Chris is a professional Fire Captain and EMT. He holds a BA in History/Anthropology, an MA in Historical Archaeology, and has attended numerous public and private expeditions.