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Monday, November 9, 2020

Bigfoot: My Puzzling Experiences In Canada 
By Dorraine Fisher

There was a day that bigfoot grabbed me and held on. Figuratively, of course, thankfully. But he grabbed me nonetheless. And my life hasn’t been the same since. And I didn’t see him, but I was convinced from that moment on that he just might really exist.  And it happened in a big wilderness area of western Ontario in Canada.

Back in 2009, when I and my then-husband were visiting relatives that had a very large cabin (or cottage as they called it) on the Lake of the Woods near the small town of Kenora in western Ontario. There was a lot of wilderness there as there were still not many houses on that area of the lake. And it contained some pretty thickly forested areas all around the lake. Fishing tournaments occurred every year there, and deer and other creatures wandered into Kenora on a regular basis. It’s a picturesque and still largely wild area with many curious rock stacks along the roadsides. 

But on our first night there on a sunny but cool afternoon in October, we were unpacking the vehicle and decided to go out on the front deck and enjoy the view of the lake for a while. And as we were drinking and talking, time flew by and the sun went down and we retired to the inside for dinner.

Suddenly I realized I had forgotten some things in the truck.

“I’m going out to the truck to get some things.” I announced. “Does anyone need anything out there?”  

My then son-in-law turned quickly toward me with a concerned look and said, “Just be careful! Bears and other animals come up into the yard at night looking for food. And I don’t want you to be the main course.”

But I was missing some important items so that I could get ready for bed later, and I felt  strongly that I needed to go out and get them. Curiously, there was no additional concern for my safety as everyone had been drinking all day and didn’t have a care in the world by that time. So, there wasn’t much argument when I decided to grab my flashlight and charge out the back door.  I knew right where the stuff was. I would just get it and get back inside quickly. No problem. Except that the truck was a good 50 yards from the back door. And it was parked in a spot that was somewhat dark.

But I was not deterred. I waved my flashlight around to make sure I didn’t trip over anything and I ran to the truck. But when I got there, the bag I was looking for was buried under some other stuff and I had to dig around for it.

As I was digging and cursing a little under my breath, I thought I heard something. And I completely forgot what I was doing for a second and I paused to listen. I was listening for bear sounds since that was the biggest threat, but it was quiet at that moment, though something made me keep listening. And what suddenly broke the silence was a distinct whooping sound. One clear whoop that was coming from the thick forest just beyond the border of the back yard. Not far away at all. I can remember thinking this was not a bird sound. I had done a lot of camping and hiking and I knew most night bird sounds. And this wasn’t one of those sounds. This sounds more like a monkey or great ape, I thought. And I remained still for a moment and suddenly heard another whoop, nearly identical to the first one, coming from across the yard on the opposite side of where I’d heard the first one.  

I was intrigued. And I have to say that the first possibility I thought about was bigfoot. Hands down, there was no hesitation in my thinking. I had been a believer for many years, watched every bigfoot documentary ever made, and I really believed I’d just heard evidence of this creature in the dark woods. What else in the woods would sound just like an ape?

I grabbed my stuff and slammed the truck door closed and I paused again. But I didn’t hear anything else except the normal night sounds, and I headed for the back door.

When I entered the kitchen, everyone was laughing and talking. “Looks like you made it back alive,” someone laughed. And I smiled nervously and they got quiet for a moment like they were politely waiting for me to speak. And as I’m always up for a good laugh, I just blurted out, “I think I just heard bigfoot out there in the woods beyond the yard.” I was smiling like I didn’t quite believe it myself, or because I knew what kind of reaction I’d get from them, but they were all just staring at me. When suddenly my then-son-in-law burst into laughter. “Yeah, we get that a lot around here. But there’s no such thing as bigfoot. You probably heard an owl or something, eh?”

I wanted to argue, but they were all laughing at me and talking about bigfoot documentaries and all the fakery surrounding the subject. It was gaslighting at its worst.  But I just stood there thinking, I know what I heard. And it wasn’t an owl.  But there was no real reason to argue. They’d just laugh at me more, so I dropped the subject. But I laid awake that night thinking about it.

After not sleeping,  I got up early and got dressed, grabbed my camera, and headed down the boat dock to capture the sunrise before anyone else was up. We had planned to take the boat out for a tour of the lake and do some fishing.  It was a beautiful clear morning, but I noticed right away that it was eerily quiet up on the tree-covered hills south of the cottage. I stood and listened for a moment but didn’t hear anything. Not a breeze, not a single water bird or fish jumping or anything.

It all seemed strange but I snapped a few pictures and sat down on the edge of the dock and enjoyed the view when the rest of the group came clamoring down the hill to join me, still chattering and laughing like they had been the night before.

The men uncovered the boat and tried to get it started, but it wouldn’t start.  And they were talking back and forth to each other debating what the problem might be. Their voices were echoing in the quiet.  I and my step-daughter were talking almost at a whisper about how nice the view was and enjoying the sunshine when we all suddenly heard something.  There was a loud noise up on the hills above us. It was a thundering and swishing sound and we all looked up just in time to see a fully matured maple tree shaking back and forth violently as if something had grabbed it and shaken it with no real effort at all.

“What the heck?” I asked, looking over at my son-in-law who seemed puzzled. “Huh! Probably a moose or something,” he said. And he promptly went back to getting the boat started. But the rest of us were still staring at the hillside waiting for something else to be shaken or looking for the probably very large animal that had shaken it. But no such animal appeared. I kept watching and watching, holding my camera, but saw nothing. The obvious known animal that could have done something like that would have been a large bear. But we never saw one and we never heard any sound a bear might make.  And none of the neighbors had claimed to have a large bear in the area.  So we all piled into the boat for our morning boat tour.

Nothing else happened in the following two weeks that we were there. But when we talked to our son-in-law after we returned home, he told us a scary story about another visit they made to the cabin after we had gone.

“At about 9:30 two nights ago, we were in the back bedroom having a discussion when we heard a bear walking around on the back deck. And it must have been huge because it’s footsteps sounded like thunder and shook the whole cottage.. I grabbed my gun.  I didn’t know what the hell was going to happen. But it finally left.”

But I had to ask, “Did it sound like four feet or just two out there?”

He paused for a moment. “It was a bear,” he laughed. “What else could be that big?”

“Did it do any damage to the house?” we asked.

“No, none, thankfully.”

But he sounded pretty shaken and possibly confused about what happened. And I never did get an answer to my first question.

The main deck on that cottage had high wooden railing all around it designed to keep animals out. . And the only entry to it was right next to the back door.  There was a high latched iron gate at the entrance there. Even a large bear would have had trouble finding its way onto the deck. It would have had to climb over the 6-foot gate at the entrance by the back door or it would have had to scale a steep incline up to the deck itself and then find a way to climb over the high railing. It wouldn’t have been impossible but it seemed to me that it would have been difficult for any animal...except one that could stand on two feet and climb, I thought.

Eventually it occurred to me to check the internet to see if anyone had reported seeing bigfoot in the Kenora/Lake of the Woods area. And it was no surprise to me that there had been several sightings reported by bewildered witnesses who insisted on remaining anonymous. They said that Canadians at that time as a general rule didn’t believe in Bigfoot. But I can remember thinking that might change at the Lake of the Woods given enough time for people to absorb the truth.

Several years later those same relatives told us the story about how they had planted an apple tree and a cherry tree in the cottage yard on the hill. They knew it was a silly idea in bear country but they decided to do it anyway, only to find the trees had been stripped of fruit every season. But they were puzzled by the fact that the fruit had disappeared from the entire trees. Not just the lower limbs. But I wasn’t puzzled at all. I felt sure that I knew what had done it.  I had a strong feeling that I couldn’t shake. A strong feeling that bears weren’t the only giant creature walking the forests of Ontario. And it set me on a course to find out more about them. The rest is history.


This Post By TCC Team Member Dorraine Fisher. Dorraine is a Professional Writer, photographer, a nature, wildlife and Bigfoot enthusiast who has written for many magazines. Dorraine conducts research, special interviews and more for The Crypto Crew. Get Dorraine's book The Bigfoot Research Journal

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Monday, November 09, 2020 No comments » by Thomas Marcum
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