Bigfoot Thursday resumes with a video from Paul Freeman taken in 1994. Another cryptozoology puzzle presents itself here – some believe this monster is a hoax while others believe it’s the real deal. Let’s take a look!
This video is new to me despite the fact it was filmed in 1994 by retired forest ranger Paul Freeman. Though now deceased, during his career in forestry, he was a patrol rider who regularly visited the Mill Creek Watershed in the Umatilla National Forest where this footage was taken. (Photo left of Umatilla National Forest.)
The story goes that he saw a Bigfoot on his first day of work for the forestry and began looking for them in earnest after that. Paul died in 2003 after which Dr. Jeff Meldrum purchased Paul’s collection of Bigfoot footprint casts to use in his own research.
Some claim he was a hoaxer, while others vehemently defend him. If you recall what I’ve said about the Bigfoot “community” before, they can be a very divisive, nasty, backbiting group. I’m sorry to say it, but it’s true. Just look at the comments sections of all things related to Bigfoot, particularly the BRFO page on Facebook. For this reason I steer clear of them and make up my own mind about things, which I advise you to do too.
With all this in mind, let’s look at the video and see what we can deduce from it.
I know, it’s another painfully wobbly and fuzzy video. I have read, though, that that is in great part due to the technology of 1994 versus what cameras can do nowadays. Still, some things impress me from it:
- Paul sounds genuinely out of breath and seems to be trying to document the evidence he found of the footprints. Then he spots the animal in the near distance and actually tries to pursue it to get a better shot.
- When the animal glances back, towards Paul, as it’s walking, it reminded me of “Patty” from the Patterson/Gimlin film. It’s the same gesture and same look.
- From the little we can see, the shape of the animal seems consistent with our general idea of a Bigfoot: no neck, broad shoulders, long arms.
What I don’t understand is how his chatting for the camera about the footprints didn’t alert the Bigfoot(s) to his presence and cause them to run away before he ever got a glimpse of them.
Also, at least some of the footprints look a bit flat to me, like they could have been stamped into the ground because they lack any display of movement, toes dug in, and “dermal ridges.” To be fair, the ground does look awfully dry so maybe that’s why the footprints are so plain.
On the other hand, or foot, there are a LOT of prints going back and forth to the water source that is behind Paul as he’s filming. If that had been hoaxed, someone did a lot of work for nothing. I don’t believe hoaxers are ever that thorough.
Another important clue: the area where he filmed this scene was in a gated area of the forest where only authorized forestry personnel could enter. So not just anyone could get in there to commit a hoax.
I’d like to share another short video with you that I appreciated. It’s by MK Davis and he was able to stabilize the video and do some further analysis which impressed me. Here it is:
In the original film I didn’t get a sense of this movement at all – in fact by this time I was feeling a bit sea sick with all of Paul’s erratic camera movement. But when stabilized and slowed down, we can definitely see that something is squirming around in front of the adult Bigfoot. Surely, it must have been a baby Bigfoot. What else would it be? If it was prey it would have been causing a heck of a ruckus and that’s clearly not happening in the video.
So what should we make of all this? For me, I think there’s a very good chance this is a real family of Bigfoots caught on video. Sure the quality of the video is awful, but thanks to current technology, we’re able to see more important clues in it.
Plus there’s the circumstantial evidence – all those footprints going back and forth between the water and the forest glade where the creatures were resting. If Dr. Jeff Meldrum thought the prints were legitimate enough to buy for his research, then that’s good enough for me.
I’m happy to have found this video – it shows real Bigfoot behavior in the wild, much like Jane Goodall’s research showed us aspects of Mountain Gorilla life. Not as neatly filmed or organized, true, but a Bigfoot step in the right direction, I think.
What do you think about it?
If you see a Bigfoot video that you’d like us to review, please email me the link to cryptoville (at) hotmail.com. If I pick your video to use in a Bigfoot Thursday segment, you’ll win a darling fairy bookmark by artist Becky Kelly!