Anyone who pays attention to odd news headlines may have heard about a Bigfoot sighting which took place in Kentucky's Daniel Boone Forest a week ago today. According the the story which appeared on Sept. 12 in the Bluefield Daily Telegraph (read the original news story here), a woman who plunked down 75.00 to join a group of paranormal researchers in a late-night Bigfoot hunt claims that her group stumbled across the fabled cryptid as it attempted to eat a deer. Claims the woman who spotted the creature, "When the flashlight hit his eyes he immediately turned his head and moved his body and turned the opposite direction we were in." The creature then fled into the eastern Kentucky wilderness.
This alleged sighting, we're afraid, has more holes than a hunk of Swiss cheese, which leads us to believe that this sighting is, at best, the result of overactive imaginations. At worst, it may be an attempt to con simple-minded folks out of their money.
One should be skeptical of any group which solicits close to a hundred bucks for a late-night walk in the woods- something the average person can do for free. Although the news article didn't specify how many people comprised the group, the article does state that the expedition was divided into three smaller groups (only one of which claims to have spotted Bigfoot). This would lead us to believe that that the hunt was attended by somewhere in the neighborhood of 12 to 20 people. At seventy-five bucks a pop, that's not a bad haul for a stroll through the forest. The newspaper claimed that the group had to pay $150 for a temporary special-use permit from the U.S. Forest Service. If the group contained a dozen people, that would put $750 in someone's pocket after expenses.
It also seems odd that the group which made the sighting didn't capture a single image. These days, just about everyone has a cellphone or handheld device capable of taking pictures. Group members certainly had enough time to act; they were able to spot Bigfoot, determine that he was about to feast on Bambi, shine a flashlight onto him, and then watch as he turned his head, then moved his body, and then scampered off. And if you're part of a group of serious hunters determined to prove the existence of Bigfoot, you'd expect at least one member to have a camera at the ready.
One would also assume that the group would have had to have been in pretty close proximity in order to give such a detailed description of what they saw that night. Common sense dictates that a half dozen or so hikers traipsing through the woods at night would make enough noise to frighten away virtually any animal (anyone who's ever been in the woods at night can attest to the fact that a small animal snapping a twig has seems to sound as loud as a shotgun blast). Factor in the flashlight beams and you've either got one legally blind Bigfoot with bad hearing, or a whopper of a fish tale.
Another interesting detail is that no one in the group had made any attempt to make molds of, or at least photograph, the footprints left at the scene. The group would have had ample time to map the coordinates of the site and return in the morning to comb the scene for further evidence. Since this was not done, it would appear that this paranormal research group, like most paranormal research groups, was made up of a bunch of amateurs lacking basic investigative skills.
Not surprisingly, members of the Bigfoot hunting team declined to give their real names to the newspaper for fear of being labeled as kooks. This, of course, is an affront to serious researchers who perform serious research. Can you imagine a genetic researcher withholding his or her name from the press after making a breakthrough scientific discovery? Serious researchers and investigators do not feel the need to hide behind a cloak of anonymity, unlike con artists and kooks. The paper did state, however, that the group is planning another hunt for the following spring. Our guess is that, thanks to the Bluefield Daily Telegraph's publicity, the group will contain a lot more members the next time around. They may not come home with any photographic evidence of Bigfoot- but they will come home with a lighter wallet.