Saturday, October 20, 2012

Big Bigfoot Photo Discussion

Readers will know I am skeptical of Bigfoot. While Robert Pyle's book Where Bigfoot Walks convinced me a large primate in N. America wasn't impossible from an ecological point of view, it still seemed unlikely that we have missed such a species, even if it's smart, wary, and rare.  Since the Patterson/Gimlin film of 1967 (still hotly disputed) there have been countless fuzzy films and photos - Loren Coleman calls them "blobsquatches" - that I took one look at and dismissed.
But this one is kind of interesting.
For one thing, I know one expedition member, Lori Simmons, who was a local addition to the experienced Extreme Expedition guys led by Adam Davies.
They were camped at a public campground, with an infrared camera trap in place, and something walked through the frame, bent over the sleeping-bagged expedition members, and moved on.  The shape, which anthropologist Dale Drinnon, whose blog is linked above, has done a lot of measurements on, is about five feet high when bent over. (Dale isn't sure it is bent over, but I think it is: I can't picture any logical animal shape, human included, if this thing is standing straight up.)  Its brightness on the infrared is fairly even all over the body which tends to indicate the consistent surface temperature of a warm body, and that puzzles me: a human in a hoodie or parka should show at least a small change where the pants begin.  An image was released of an expedition member bent over in the same spot: see the links above for the images.

I wrote,
Interesting. "The re-creation by the team member helps a lot. It seems absurd that the most elusive large animal in the world would be videoed taking a stroll through a public campground with fire sites and picnic tables, but certainly bears as well as primates have been known to make the same kind of visits, and it's not a stretch that an unknown primate, even a wary one, would occasionally poke around near sleeping humans to see what might be edible. I've never been a fan of the idea sasquatch is normally nocturnal - we have no known nocturnal apes and only a few nocturnal monkeys. Again, though, humans are certainly not a nocturnal species and yet we do poke around in the dark at times. It would be interesting to do the re-creation again at the right time of night to see how bright a human being in clothing shows up in the infrared, but you folks might have thought of this already and done it."
The superimposition has now been done, at least with the still frames. Dale argued that my point about nocturnal apes wasn't entirely true - most apes, when pressed by human encroachment into their habitat, will shift at least partly to nighttime movement.

There is an awful lot of this still to be analyzed, but it is the one of the more intriguing bigfoot incidents of recent years.  I don't have the expertise to rule a human in a costume in or out, but I'll be keeping a close eye.... 

2 comments:

Clark said...

This looks like the common type of blobsquatch wearing a parka with hood while sitting at a picnic table. Expeditions are plagued with pranksters. It seems the best reason we have for entertaining the possibility of Bigfoot is the most credible of first person eye witness reports. What do you think of Matthew Johnson's sighting? This is much more worthwhile considering than a blobsquatch in a parka visiting an expedition. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H9HHjXk0t34

Matt Bille said...

Johnson's sighting was veru interesting - I mentioned it in my last book as sparking renewed interest in the creature. Apparently he, like so many others, got bogged down in the fratricidal politics of sasquatch research, and I understand he's distanced himself somewhat. I would still class that sighting as "unexplained."