The night shift was an easy one, and this part of the job was one they didn’t mind at all. They just had to drive out to the edge of Whitehall—keeping half-an-eye out for teenagers who often used this stretch of road for partying—then loop back into town. The ride was a little boring, but it never took more than 40 minutes to make the run. Besides, it was a pretty night. The stars were out, and the night sounds were relaxing.
Frank was lost in his thoughts as the fields of grass moved slowly past his squad car windows. After a while he radioed his partner, “Jim, let’s turn around in the field up ahead and head back. There aren’t any kids out this late on a school night.”
“Roger that,” Jim said. “I was just about to suggest the same thing.”
Frank watched as Jim’s car slowed down, then pulled off to the right onto the edge of the field to make the U-turn. Suddenly, Jim’s car came to a complete stop at the edge of the field and his high beams came on. Then, the car radio crackled to life. “Frank. Frank! What … What the hell is that! Holy shit! What IS that?! What is it?! I’m getting the hell out of here!” The tires on Jim’s squad car screeched on the pavement as he pulled back on to the road and drove at top speed back towards Whitehall. His car flew by Frank, and minutes later, Frank was left alone. ‘What the hell just happened?’, he thought. He picked up his radio mic. “Jim,” Frank called on his radio. “Jim, can you hear me? What did you see? Jim. Can you hear me?” But the radio was silent.
Frank was about to head back to Whitehall, but he decided to wait a few more minutes. He was hoping to see what Jim had seen, but nothing showed in his headlights, and everything was quiet. Everything was—too quiet. It was then that Frank noticed the crickets, or the lack of them. They had stopped making their chirping sounds. Now, the only sound was the breeze blowing across tall grass. Frank’s lights illuminated the road in front of him, but he couldn’t see very far. He could just about see where Jim had turned his car around. Then, he heard something moving around in the grass very close by. It was a loud rustling sound. The sound grew louder and louder until it sounded like whatever was making it was right there in front of him. Jim slowly reached over to the side of his car and turned on his spotlight.
There in the field, no more than 20 feet away was an enormous creature. It stood upright on two legs, towering over the field, its arms hanging at its sides and falling well below its knees. The beast was covered with long, shaggy brown hair, but its face was fleshy looking, and its eyes glowed red in the beam of the spotlight. It was a huge, hulking creature with no neck, that weighed around 400 pounds. As soon as the spotlight hit it, the beast brought its huge hands up to its face and covered its eyes. Then, it raised its face to the sky and let out a deep guttural scream. It looked back at Jim, blinked its red eyes a few times, growled loudly, then turned quickly and took three enormous strides into the field and vanished into the darkness. Later, Jim would say, “When you hear people say that your life flashes before your eyes when you think you’re about to die—believe you me, it does.”
Sometimes the things we least expect to find show up in the most unlikely places. Bigfoot sightings in New York and Connecticut? That’s impossible! Not so fast. Although Bigfoot are primarily thought of as a Pacific Northwest phenomenon, sightings have been reported all over the United State including New York and Connecticut. In fact, New York has had one of the highest number of reported sightings.
Although interest in Bigfoot has had a resurgence in recent years thanks to shows like Expedition Bigfoot and Finding Bigfoot, legends of similar humongous, shaggy beasts go back centuries.
Many Native American tribes have legends of a Bigfoot-like creature, and each tribe has a different name for it--The Hairy Man, Big Elder Brother, The Night People, Big Spirit Being, The Wood Man, and of course Sasquatch. To indigenous people, Bigfoot is considered to be a spiritual or interdimensional being who can enter or leave our physical dimension as they please; and if you see a Bigfoot, it indicates that man has somehow upset the harmony and balance of existence. If this is true, then it’s no surprise that Bigfoot sightings are on the uprise.
Accounts of a Bigfoot-like creature in the Connecticut area have been around for ages, but things really took off in 1895 when reports of “The Wild Man” began showing up in local newspapers. The Wild Man sightings took place in Colebrook, Connecticut, a small town about 30 miles northwest of Hartford. According to one newspaper article of the time, the town selectman, Riley Smith, reported seeing a “large man, stark naked, and covered with hair all over his body” running out of a clump of bushes. He described it as “a wild, hairy man of the woods, six foot in height … the man’s hair was black and hung down long on his shoulders, and his body was thickly covered with black hair.”
In the weeks that followed, word of the Wildman spread. A reward was offered for its capture and a search party of more than 100 armed men was dispatched. But in spite of the thorough search, the Wildman eluded capture. In the ensuing weeks, reports of Wildman sightings lessened, then stopped altogether.
Decades later, reports of a huge, elusive, shaggy creature began to surface in 1972. One sighting took place in Winchester, Connecticut, just seven miles from the Wild Man sightings. The Hartford Courant reported that two men observed “a strange, man-like creature” on Winchester Road near Crystal Lake Reservoir. They described it as an upright hominid “about eight feet tall and covered with hair’. The creature eventually disappeared into the woods. When it was suggested that the men might have seen a bear, they laughed and said, “This was not a bear.”
In 1974, a similar creature was spotted near Rugg Brook Reservoir in Winchester, Connecticut, just a few miles from Crystal Lake Reservoir. One night, two couples were parked by the reservoir when they spotted in the moonlight what they described as a “six-foot, 300-pound creature covered with dark-colored hair”. Because they were so terrified, they quickly drove off and notified the police. The police searched the area, but failed to turn up any conclusive evidence.
In 2007 a man from the northwestern part of Connecticut claims he saw a Bigfoot in an open field at the top of a hill. The 26 year old man, Derek, was scanning the field for deer when he spotted the creature 150 yards from where he stood. The beast looked right at him, and he estimated the animal’s height at around 6-and-a-half feet tall.
Derek reported, “Its skin looked black and leathery. I would say it was a pretty even mix between a gorilla and a person,” he recalled. “It had a broader chest and more of a narrow waist. It was lanky, it was actually a little more lanky at the bottom and kind of bulky at the top.
It must have seen me come up over the hill, and that was the thing that actually scared me the most--having it looking right at me. There is no question that it knew I was there.” The creature suddenly turned and walked quickly into the woods.
Not all of the Connecticut Bigfoot sightings occur in the wild. In 2009 a woman reported seeing a strange creature outside of her home in Windham County, Connecticut. It was 2 AM and the woman couldn’t sleep, so she decided to go downstairs to the kitchen for a glass of milk. She turned on the overhead kitchen light, then turned and got the milk from the refrigerator. As she turned around she glanced at the back window and saw two red, golf ball sized eyes staring at her from the rear kitchen window. She described the eyes as being set farther apart than human eyes, with possible light grey skin under each eye. She maintained eye contact with the creature which she estimated to be 7 feet tall for approximately 5-6 seconds before ducking down behind an island counter between her and the kitchen window.
Once she was sure the creature had left, she turned on the back and front yard spotlights, but she couldn’t see anything. The next morning she inspected the area in front of the rear kitchen window where the animal had been standing and noticed two foot-like impressions in the soil immediately beneath the kitchen window.
On Saturday, August 4, 2018, a woman was taking a drive with her boyfriend on the Wilbur Cross Parkway in Connecticut. They were traveling from Berlin to Woodbridge, and it was raining lightly. The road runs through residential areas, as well as through heavily forested state park land. As the car made its way through one of the more wooded areas of the parkway, the woman looked out of her passenger side window and saw something that she didn’t understand at first. It looked like an extremely tall man with shoulder length dirty-blonde hair was standing in a clearing of the woods about 75 feet away. As she focused on the figure, she realized that it wasn’t a man, it was some kind of an animal, and its chest, arms and legs were also covered in long, shaggy, dirty-blonde hair which hung down about 6 inches all over its body. This hulking creature stood about 8 feet tall, had a large head, and its shoulders were about three feet wide. Their car was traveling south, but the creature was traveling north, so its face was clearly visible. It too was covered with hair. As it walked upright on two legs, its arms hung down at its sides, and they swayed like a gorilla’s. As the car passed it, the woman jumped out of her seat and turned around, keeping her eyes locked on the beast for as long as she could. As she jumped in her seat, her boyfriend said, “What are you doing? What are you looking at?” She said, “I just saw the weirdest thing, and it was not a human. I think I just saw a Sasquatch!”
A 2019 survey from the Travel Channel and the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization lists New York as having some of the highest bigfoot sightings in the United States. In fact, New York ranks fifth in the US behind Washington, California, Pennsylvania, and Michigan in the number of reported sightings. There have been so many sightings in Whitehall, New York, an area near the Vermont border, that it is known as the Bigfoot capital of the east coast.
In the Autumn of 1992, a motorist in Warren County, New York had a stand-off with a strange creature that came out of the woods early one morning. The witness said, “It was about 6 AM and I was on my way to work when something came from the right side of the road, out of the woods, and forced me to either stop or run into it. It was dark, so it took a few seconds to get my thoughts together. When I did I couldn't believe what I was seeing. It was a huge creature, somewhere between 7-8 feet tall at least with white or light gray hair from head to toe. It was standing around 10 feet in front of my car directly in the headlights so I had a perfect view. The creature was standing facing the left side of the road with a slight left twist to its body in my direction. We stared at each other for what seemed to be minutes but I can't say for sure how long it actually was. I had absolutely no fear of this creature. It seemed to have a sad demeanor, and it made no sound at all. Then it just turned away from me, took a few huge strides into the woods, and it was gone. Needless to say I’ve carried my camera with me wherever I go ever since, but I believe that it was a once in a lifetime incident.”
Another sighting in Warren County took place on the shores of Lake George, New York in the Spring of 1990. After reading the witness's description of the creature and seeing the drawing he submitted, I’d say that it wasn’t exactly a Bigfoot, but rather some other mysterious creature. Maybe a Littlefoot!
The witness said, “My brother and I were canoeing on Lake George, in NY state at around sunset. We headed south for 10 minutes to an area known as Deer Leap. At the lakeside is a boulder strewn area with cliffs rising 600 feet above the shoreline. As we were beginning to come on to this area we saw something standing on shore. It was brownish in color and standing straight up with it's arms at its side. It was about the size of a small man and extremely skinny, like a teenage boy. It appeared to be covered with reddish brown hair, and had a pale face, and expressive eyes and mouth. But the weird thing was that it had a deranged smile or smirk on its face. This thing wasn’t a baby bear or anything like that. Unlike a bear, its arms were long and it didn’t have a snout.
When we saw it, its body was facing south, and it was looking down the shoreline. Suddenly, it turned its head directly towards us and stared at us very intently. We whispered to each other and watched it while it watched us. Here we were, two grown men paddling parallel to the shore about 200 feet out from this thing, but we couldn’t get up the courage to go in closer.
Like I said, this thing had a strange look on its face, almost a crazed grin. It looked almost like a giant Lemur. The sun was setting now as we continued to watch it in the shadows of the mountain. It was standing next to an old, dead pine tree, and it turned and climbed, sloth-like up the tree about 20 feet to the first large limb, and then onto the crook of a branch. We paddled back around and as we approached it again it cocked its head directly at us, after a minute or so it turned its face downward into its body and it looked like it became part of the tree. It blended in so perfectly it looked just like a lump in the crook of the branch. You would never have known that it was there unless you saw it move. I have been in this area all my life and have never seen anything like this and have not seen it since.” The witness submitted this eerie sketch with his report ...
The entire way home we felt as if we were being followed. I slept on a fold out couch in the living room and the entire front of the house has windows. The next morning I awoke at around 6:30AM and I saw a large creature about 20 feet from the house. It must have been at least 10 feet tall, because the windows are 15 feet off the ground and it was no more than 5 feet below me.
I watched it wandering around for a while, but I didn’t dare move. It was brown and looked very human except for its size and forehead, and obviously the hair it was covered with. After about five minutes it walked toward the house and up a bank. As it passed the house it banged so hard on the wall that I thought it's arm would come right through. My friend was awakened by this and came in and I told him what I had seen. We saw that this thing left tracks in the snow, but we decided to stay in rather than follow them. Can you blame us?”
In 2010, a retired policeman and army veterine was camping at Cascade Lake in the Adirondacks. He spent the day hiking and fishing, then had a quiet night at his campsite where he slept soundly. At 7AM he woke up and started to make breakfast. It was a beautiful, clear sunny morning, and mist was rising off the surface of the lake. He thought that it would make a great photo, so he grabbed his iPhone and walked about 50 yards to the edge of the lake to take the picture. As he approached the breakwall, he noticed a dark brown object on the opposite side of the lake on the shore. At first he couldn’t make out what it was, but it seemed to be some sort of an animal, and it looked like it was sitting at the water’s edge. The animal looked like it was doing something in the water with its paws, as a faint splashing sound could be heard.
The man thought it would be a good idea to get a picture, so he brought the phone up to eye level and tried zooming in on the animal. As he was focusing in, the animal suddenly stood up on two legs. The man was startled and pulled the phone down to get a better look at this creature with his own eyes. The creature stood about 8 feet tall, and was covered head to toe with long, dark, shaggy hair or fur. It was too far away to see any facial features, but its upper body was massive and stocky like a football player’s build. It had very long arms that hung well below its waist, and it had hands, not paws. It took a step towards the tree line, then stopped and turned its whole upper body to the left and stared at the man for about 10 seconds. As it turned back towards the woods, sunlight shone off of its back. It took two gigantic steps, and disappeared into the forest. Although he was a retired policeman and military man, he had never seen anything like this in his life. He quickly returned to his campsite, packed up, and drove away as fast as he could.
In a 2012 New York Daily News video, an elderly man named Frank Siecienski from Whitehall, New York was interviewed about a photo his wildlife camera captured one night. He said, “In my yard I have an apple tree that was loaded with so many apples that one year it was unbelievable. One day I was going through my yard and I happened to look at the apple tree, and all the apples in one section, like a 5-foot-high section, all the apples were devoured. They were completely gone. So I set up a game camera and left it there for seven days and seven nights. Both my wife and I when we first saw it on the computer said, ‘What in the world is that?’ We got this picture of some creature, and it was estimated to be over 400 pounds. So right now I have a picture of a creature that everyone is telling me—and I believe it is—a female Sasquatch with a youngun.” The photo shows a huge animal with its back to the camera. It is covered with fur, has a cone-shaped head, and seems to be hunched over a very young fur covered animal. The hand of this ‘baby Bigfoot’ can be seen holding onto the arm of the larger creature. It is an incredible photo, and one of the most convincing I’ve seen to date.
Of course, skeptics argue that by now there should be an abundance of physical evidence to prove that Bigfoot really exists. In addition, now that nearly everyone on the planet has a smartphone, there should be no shortage of photo and video evidence. And with all of the Bigfoot hunters out there, both on TV and in the private sector, someone would have caught one by now.
If Bigfoot is real, then what is it? Surely, by now we’ve discovered every type of animal there is on the planet, right? In 2019 alone, scientists discovered seventy-one new species of animals, fish, and plants. Shannon Bennet is the head of the California Academy of Sciences and Dean of research. In a recent interview she said, “Despite decades of tirelessly scouring some of the most familiar and remote places on Earth, biodiversity scientists estimate that more than 90% of nature’s species remain unknown.”
So, it’s very possible that Bigfoot falls into the undiscovered 90% category. But there are others who think that Bigfoot is more than just an elusive animal. They feel that Bigfoot is a highly evolved, and highly misunderstood, race of people.
In 2016 I received a curious email which read:
I see that you investigate paranormal activities around Connecticut and New York, and I was wondering if you have ever come across recent Sasquatch or Dogman sightings in the Litchfield hills area?
I wrote back that I had heard rumors of Bigfoot sightings in Connecticut, but I have never been contacted by anyone who had actually seen one. I asked if he had ever seen a Bigfoot, and his answer really piqued my interest. He wrote:
I have had contact and sightings with The Sasquatch people, but I am not at liberty to disclose where I've had them, for the simple reason I respect their forest home, and do not want "Bigfoot Hunters" or so called "researchers" trying to track them down. This is by no means directed at you, just in general to the folks who have a specific agenda of disrupting things.
After the writer discovered that I had not heard from any other Bigfoot eyewitnesses, he emailed me one last time. At the very end of his message he said something that stuck with me, and I think there may be some truth to it. He wrote:
I was just wondering if you ever came across other individuals who have had encounters in the past. I am always interested in hearing other people’s stories when it comes to The Sasquatch. I will say this much, they are a highly evolved race of ‘people’ who put us humans to shame with their ability to shape shift, teleport and communicate using telepathy. The reason no one has ever captured them is because they know way in advance a person's intention through energy vibrations and auric fields.
Is Bigfoot an advanced, shape-shifting, interdimensional being or just an undiscovered species of animal? Is he seemingly impossible to catch because he’s an extremely introverted and elusive animal, or because he ducks back-and-forth between dimensions? Does Bigfoot blend in with the scenery because he’s developed the ability to camouflage himself like a chameleon, or because he can shape-shift and look like anything he wants to whenever anyone is near? The jury is still out, and maybe that’s a good thing. What fun would life be without a good mystery, and Bigfoot is one of the biggest mysteries of all. I think Albert Einstein summed it up best when he said, “The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science.”
So if you’re out hiking in the woods and you spot an 8-foot-tall creature covered with long brown hair and red eyes, don’t be afraid. It’s probably just Bigfoot, and he’s probably just waiting for an opportunity to quietly slip away into the woods and melt away into the shadows.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBkrkf5Mnpw “Searching For Bigfoot in Whitehall, New York” New York Daily News Video.