Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Posts tagged ‘Bigfoot campouts’

Doug Waller Collects Stories of Bigfoot Experiences

Author of Four Bigfoot Books

Doug at Library

Doug Waller greets those attending a lecture at the library.

If you have an encounter with a large, hairy, ape-like creature, Doug Waller is the man to call. He’s writing books about the experiences people have had with what they call Bigfoot or Sasquatch. His stories come from sightings all over the world.

bigfoot-newcomerstown

This Bigfoot statue, a favorite of mine, can be found in Newcomerstown at The Feed Barn.

   People have been intrigued by the Legend of Bigfoot for hundreds of years. This large hairy creature is known as Bigfoot in the United States, Sasquatch in Canada, and Yeti in the Himalayans. It’s no surprise that the creature received his name after footprints were discovered that were very large – up to 24 inches long.

Bigfoot sightings US and Canada

This map shows Bigfoot sightings in the United States and Canada.

   Bigfoot has been written about for years. In 1925, Zane Grey wrote an article in Oregon Trail Magazine describing the encounter some miners had with what they described as two giant forest monsters, who looked like ape-men. Native Americans saw Bigfoot as a spiritual being and included it in their totem poles.

   Doug’s interest in the legend of Bigfoot has been strong for over thirty years. His first recollection was in the 1970s when he read about the hairy ape-man in Missouri called Mo Mo – Missouri Monster. When he was just out of high school, he read in the newspaper about a meeting that Don Keating was having about Bigfoot so he attended.

Doug FOotprint Casts

Casts of footprints were on display from Ohio and California.

   Things got serious when he joined the staff of the Guernsey County Public Library. During his 23 years working there, he would read two or three books about Bigfoot at a time. Once he read all the local ones, he began ordering them in from other libraries. Another staff member, Shawna Parks, also found the subject interesting and investigated stories with Doug.

   Then a popular local couple had an experience at Salt Fork State Park in August of 2004 that really spurred his interest. They had seen a large creature near the grounds where they were camping. It had many of the characteristics of Bigfoot including that distinct odor that resembles rotten eggs. It was the first local spotting that could be investigated. This area is now known as Bigfoot Ridge and is a primitive campground and picnic area.

Bigfoot sign

This sign displays its name and symbol at many events.

   In 2008, Doug formed a group called Southeastern Ohio Society for Bigfoot Investigation. The main focus of the group is to give a safe venue for Bigfoot eyewitnesses to come together to share their encounters and experiences. Many witnesses are reluctant to tell of their experience due to ridicule. Most say it has changed their life. Some never hunted again or even went into the woods. Others moved from the country where they had always lived to ensure safety.

Doug Speaking about Bigfoot

Doug uses a slideshow to share stories of Bigfoot.

   Now Doug frequently gives lectures in six or seven different states about these experiences and holds campouts at spots where the mysterious Bigfoot happens to frequent. Investigators meet there around a campfire and many stay for the weekend looking for evidence of footprints, hair, and rough structures.

Bigfoot Campout Salt Fork

Campouts are held during the summer months at Salt Fork State Park.

   Often during the evening, they hear screams, wood knocks, rocks are thrown, and trees twisted. Branches are frequently found arranged into a simple structure. When tracks are found, they make a case of them for future reference. Some of Bigfoot’s favorite paths include railroad tracks, streams, and power lines.

Bigfoot structure Salt Fork State Park

This structure, thought to be made by Bigfoot, was found near Salt Fork Lake.

   One interesting tale happened in Belmont County with a family who lived in the country. The dad worked in the deep coal mines on a swing shift so that meant that mom and the four children were often alone at night. That’s when Bigfoot would pay a visit. He would scream and pound on the walls.

   One evening something was hiding in the loft of the barn. The mother fired a shot and heard the creature running away. Another night Bigfoot got into the basement. The mother could hear him breathing and smelled that wretched smell before she called the sheriff as well as her husband at work. Her husband came home twenty miles to find her guarding the door with her gun and the children hiding behind her skirt. No trace was found of Bigfoot.

Doug Footprint Comparison

Another Bigfoot speaker, David Wickham, shows a size comparison between a Bigfoot and human footprint.

   There are many ideas of who Bigfoot really is but no one has the answer. Some feel he’s linked to the caveman. Others think he’s an interdimensional being or believe that there is an extraterrestrial connection. One theory says that Bigfoot appears due to the electromagnetic effects of UFOs as the two are frequently seen together. Research continues!

Doug Books

Doug has written four books in which he shares people’s Bigfoot stories.

   Doug has written four books about Bigfoot stories that have been shared with him and has a start on number five. Some share anonymously as they fear ridicule from friends and family. His mission is to record these stories for posterity. There have been sightings recorded in 49 of the 50 states. Hawaii is the only one without enough evidence to be listed.

Doug - Books at Stillions Market

Purchase one of Doug’s books from Tyler at Center Market on Route 22 as you head to Salt Fork State Park.

   He receives phone calls from all over the country these days and hears many interesting experiences. But Doug remarked, “I hope I haven’t gotten the most interesting one yet.”

   Just because you haven’t seen it, doesn’t mean it’s not there.

To contact Doug, you can email him at southeasternohiobigfoot@yahoo.com or message him on the Southeastern Ohio Society for Bigfoot Investigation Facebook page.

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