Gathering Research And Stories
of Paranormal Phenomena
Researching Everything Paranormal
* ghost * ET * spirit * bigfoot * ufo * cryptid * alien * dogman * mothman *
Bigfoot & Cryptids
G.R.A.S.P.P., along with the U.P.B.S.R.O. (Upper Peninsula Bigfoot/Sasquatch Research Organization) and a few of their friends gathered somewhere in the Upper Peninsula last September for a Bigfoot expedition. The first training event was to teach us the ins and outs of Bigfoot research. Soon, we will also be investigating reports and sightings of Bigfoot, Yeti's, Dogman, Mothman, and any other cryptids that may be reported to us in the Michigan area. Our goals will be to find proof of their existence or an explanation of their sightings.
What we completely expected to happen was a fun 4-day weekend in the middle of nowhere, with the chance to learn a few tricks of the trade, share some stories, and have a relaxing weekend. Well, we managed to do all that - except the relaxing part. On your first time out to this type of event, you always hope to, but usually never really, experience anything. We had unusual experiences the entire weekend.
I'll need to keep our exact location a secret, but I can say that we were in the U.P. and a good 7 miles from the nearest home. Shortly after we set up camp Rich, the expedition leader, gathered everyone and we took a hike to learn the area. Rich and his team shared some of their experiences from the area, gave us some pointers on what to watch for, and showed us some of the more active areas that we would be investigating for ourselves this weekend. Several miles later we found ourselves back at base camp.
We mingled for a while, getting to know the other investigators, swapping stories, and preparing for our first night's investigation. Once the sun began to set, we headed out. Connie had a bad ankle this trip, so she ended up staying at base camp while we wandered into the darkness. We were in a large group of individuals of about 10 people, listening, learning, asking questions after questions, and having a great time. As we returned to the areas we visited earlier, it was easy to see that we needed to pay attention or someone was going to get lost.
Rich took us back to each location from earlier and showed us some of the different techniques their group uses. The different howls and calls, tree knocking, stone clapping, and more. Almost immediately, we were getting responses to our calls! At one point Tammy, the only female wandering in our group tonight, was convinced to give a "whoop" call. She was a bit nervous but belted one out. Within a couple of seconds, we had a response that sounded pretty close to our location. Rich tells us that it seems that when women do these calls, they get better responses. A few minutes pass and I am staring into the darkness. We are in some pretty dense forest and I can't be sure, but I am seeing what appears to be like sparkles or glitter-like reflections off in the trees. I write it off as eye strain and continue to observe. Someone else decides to do a tree knock and a moment later there is a response coming from a different direction than the whoop we heard earlier. Rich's partner Jim sets up a small amplifier and plays a few different recordings of possible Bigfoot calls. A few minutes later we hear a loud splash in the river, maybe 30 feet from us. It was like someone, or something threw a large rock in the water.
Shortly after that, we moved away from the river and up to a ridge. This gave us a great view of the river and we saw several game trails in the area. We all sort of spread out along the trails. A couple of people heard a few more tree knocks, again from different directions. I was looking around with my FLIR camera when I overheard Jim and Tammy discussing what they seemed to be seeing, little sparkling lights. I asked Jim what he thought they might be as he is part of the expedition team and he replied, "not sure, I've never seen this before". I then told them of my experience at the last spot so we could keep a record for later. we checked out a couple of more locations with similar results at each one and made our way back to base camp around 1 am.
We got back to camp and began to share our experiences with the others as we wound down for the evening. I was feeling kind of bad for Connie because I was out having all the fun and she was stuck at camp for the night. Apparently, she had a little more excitement than we figured. Connie and Ruth, from Rich's team, were sitting at a table down by the river and they could see eye-shine from across the water, they were hearing tree knocks and other strange noises from all around the camp. Shortly after everyone started to unwind it started to rain so everyone decided to call it a night. Remember, this was only day one.
It rained quite hard most of the night and into the morning of day 2, so Connie, Brandon, and I figured it would be difficult to really try to build a campfire to cook breakfast and chose to head into town to find something to eat and do the "tourist thing" until the rain stopped. We got back to camp a few hours later only to find that to rest of the group had similar ideas. Everyone had taken off and we were the only three people in the campground. Brandon and I decided to explore the camp to see if we could find anything that Connie and the others experienced the night before. We tried to debunk the eyeshine, looked for footprints in the fresh mud, anything that seemed reasonable or out of place. We did not have a lot of luck, so we returned to the campsite. I went to open the door to the camper, and it was locked. Connie calls out "That will teach you!". Brandon looks at me and I explain that she is apparently trying to be funny.
The rain lets up for a little while and everyone regroups for another investigation. As we plan our attack for night #2, we decide to check the radar only to find we have more rain coming in tonight. A couple of paranormal investigators (I'm lousy with names, sorry) who came from Detroit decided they had had enough and went out to find a place to do a ghost hunt. Later, we learned that they had their own experience last night as they were going to their campsite. As they approached the truck they were sleeping in, they heard a rustling sound in the trees near them and just as they were getting into the truck something rushed them from the darkness. They did not see anything, and the event was unsettling for them. They explained it to the others as more of a sensory overload than actually seeing anything. Rich tells us that some encounters have reported this type of experience before.
We are now planning the nights' investigation when someone decides to check the weather radar and finds that we are going to be in the rain all night. Rich tells us that they don’t ever get results when they investigate in the rain. He says that he has a couple of options for us… We can try to investigate just for the practice, or we can head into town and kill some time at the bar and tell stories of our investigations. Now the bar idea sounds rather good and much dryer, but we’re here to learn.
As we prepare to get wet for our 2nd-night investigation the rain starts to come down even harder. Now we’re not sure if we made the right call, but we’re in it to the end. We decide to stay in the campground rather than wander the forest. Rich feels it will be safer and we aren’t going to find anything anyway.
Connie and a couple of others set up down at the table by the river, another team is a little downstream from them. Rich and Jim will be mobile while Brandon and I head to site #9, you know, the site that the other paranormal team had their earlier experience on. The plan is that Rich and Jim will assist each team and help us in developing some strategies to collect evidence, assuming anything even happens.
Everyone is in position and Rich and Jim are leaving Brandon and me, heading back to site 1. They are about halfway there when we hear a tree knock. Brandon calls out on the walkie “did anyone do a tree knock?” Everyone reports no. When Rich and Jim get to site one they report that they heard a “whoop”.
Back at site 9 Brandon and I are hovering under a trap to stay dry. We keep hearing what sounds like footsteps heading towards us from several different directions. We can even see that shimmering effect in one area just beyond the tree line. Suddenly, we both feel this thud on the ground. It feels like something big just stomped or jump really close to us. We are understanding that unsettling feeling the last team described.
Brandon looks at me and says “I don’t think it is a good idea to sit here facing the same direction. I agree, now we are really going to get wet. A while later Rich and Jim come back to check in with us and update us on what the others are experiencing. They are hearing whoop and knocks; things are being tossed in the river. Things are a lot more active than they expected. We tell them about the footsteps we are hearing in the woods. After a few minutes of discussing them, we come to the conclusion that what we are hearing is a combination of the rain falling through the leaves and the wind blowing through the trees. It makes sense. They have no explanation for the thump we felt. They get a call over the walkie and start to head back to site 1. Connie, Tammy, and Ruth are in site one and they are hearing what sounds like drumbeats. Did I mention that this campground location was also the site of an Indian encampment many years ago, and the land across the river is believed to be the site of an ancient Indian burial ground? They are about 200 feet away when we hear another thump in the tree line. We call them back to help us look and Jim sees the shimmering light again. Still have no idea.
An hour or so later things calm down, everyone is wet, and Brandon and I are soaked to the bones. We call it a night. It does not take long, and everyone is asleep. As I start to doze Connie says to me” So are you going to fess up?”. I reply, “What are you talking about?”. She tells me “you know what you did”. I said I have no clue what you are talking about. She looks at me confused as to whether I am being serious or pulling her leg and says, “you know, when you hit the camper.” I told her that I never hit the camper. She insists that I did when Brandon and I were walking around earlier. That is why she locked the door on us, she thought we were pranking her. I called out to Brandon to get him to confirm that it was not us.
Connie is now a little freaked out as she explains what happened to her earlier in the day. While she was cleaning the camper, she had the windows zipped closed and someone hit the camper hard. Hard enough to really rock the camper. She did not hear anyone approach, no sounds at all. She thought it was us, she was wrong. We decided to tell Rich her story in the morning.
Day 3, the sun rises, and we can hear movement over at Rich’s campsite. Connie quickly heads down to make her report. A few minutes later Rich and Connie return to our site and we begin to look for evidence. We are camped on a rocky surface, so we find no footprints of any kind. The vegetation around the site looks undisturbed. Rich asks if we can try to recreate the event, we agree. He asks me to hit the camper like I was trying to scare Connie, so I give the camper a good slap on the side. Connie replies “not it”. I hit it again, this time with both palms and as hard as I can. Ouch, that stings and Connie replies “not it”. Not even close to what she experienced. Rich asks if he can give it a try and squats down like a linebacker and rams the camper. The camper rocks as if it is going to flip over and Connie screams “that’s it, that’s what it felt like!”
Okay, so a little about our camper. This camper is about 10 years old, in great shape and it is a pop-up style camper. Rich is now discussing with us how different animals would fit in the scenario of this event. Deer would have most likely made some noise approaching and departing the area. Bear, now these guys would have struck the camper in a different way altogether. Rich explains that he used to work at a bear rescue and believes that if this were a bear, it would have most likely brushed along the whole side of the camper as if to scratch or rub itself. If a bear were to charge the camper he would probably have stood up on his hind legs and given the space between the camper and the steep slope behind it, he would most likely put his front legs through the canvas walls before rocking it.
What Rich is inclined to believe is that possibly a Bigfoot was scoping the campground for an easy meal. They are familiar with the area, and they know about when visitors start to slow down coming to the campground. One could have seen the tents and campers and noticed that there were no people, so he decides to test the area by hitting the camper. When Connie screamed out if left to not chance being detected.
Now that Connie is officially freaked out, Brandon and I are jealous of her experience, we find out the expedition crew is all packing up to go home. Apparently, they all have to work Monday. Their loss. The three of us will spend one more night in this beautiful wilderness get away and reflect on what we have learned.
We wandered the area practicing what we have learned. We did not have any luck finding our foe, we had fun trying. We settled down that evening in front of the campfire, and we enjoyed one last dinner under the evening stars. We started to talk about some of the things Rich and the team taught us. White lighted flashlights will end an investigation. It is believed that Bigfoot can see in the infra-red-light spectrum, so motion-activated trail cams and IR night vision cameras are useless. A lot of witnesses report a foul, rotten meat smell just before they have an encounter. It is also believed that coyotes tend to follow Bigfoots, or vice versa, in an attempt to possibly scavenge a meal. All in all, it has been an interesting weekend.
The campfire is getting low, and we are about out of firewood, so we decide to call it a night. We climb into the camper and get comfortable. It is strange here tonight. I’m not sure why. It could be because we are so tired or because we are completely alone now. It could be that we have had so many experiences this weekend that our minds are going wild in the quiet.
I am just relaxed enough to fall asleep when we hear a pack of coyotes wander in the campground. Their howls and barks are close, maybe three or four sites away. We all listen closely as they pass thru, and the sounds suddenly stop. They have made a kill and are now eating. Brandon and Connie relax in the silence and fall to sleep. I can’t. I am remembering what Rich said, “It is also believed that coyotes tend to follow Bigfoots or vice versa”. Now I lay here wide awake, listening to every sound. I hear something, it’s getting closer, and closer. It’s got to be about 40 or 50 feet away, it’s at our campsite. Then I hear it, it growls, it is a bear. Great, now I gotta pee! I‘ll wait till daylight!
We all wake up in the morning and I update them on the bear as we tear down the campsite, pack up the equipment and gear and make plans to return next year.
Nessie sighted again!
I found this article in my Coast to Coast AM email:
"Eoin O'Faodhagain was reportedly watching the live stream from his home in Ireland on Monday when he noticed an odd shape emerge from the water and seemingly swim a short distance across the lake." Apparently, this is Mr. O'Faodhagain's 7th sighting of the mysterious "Nessie".