Sunday, May 15, 2011

A sighting in the forest

I wanted to post this entry, as I have (so far) kept this information, on a secure part of the home research forum, told only to trusted friends, expedition and forum members of NESRA, and some close family.

On October 23, 2010, during the Fall NESRA expedition, while out on what I refer to now as the "leafy knoll" , along with my two OP partners .. I had a brief, but electrifying sighting of a figure that I caught a glimpse of (that was on the move), with my Gen 2 night vision goggles.

We had made a plan in basecamp during dinner, for two other members, to call blast..on the hour, from their position near base, while two other investigators did some observing from various positions on the forest road, while the three of us I mentioned, took position on various observation points in the forest, on the selected knoll, where myself and another investigator had sat the night before. Our home basecamp man, would be coordinating and noting our events, back at our main camp.

Several of us, had heard a softer rapping (like wood on wood), coming from behind our position. The sounds were much like.. when one would test a hand held hardwood knocker, for the best tone, on a selected tree. This came from behind us, near the blazed trail that we had walked into this position, from.

The 3rd call blast from the basecamp, came at 10PM, and was an Orangutan vocalization. I was already panning the lower areas of the forest to the east and south with the goggles. I made sure that I was observing during all of the call blasts, and as much as possible in between times.

I'm not sure of the exact time of the sighting, but know that it came in the moments after the call blast.

The actual sighting facts :

I was panning with the goggles (facing south) slowly from left to right (east to west) near the edge of the heavier forest canopy, when a dark figure emerged (in an swath of open forest floor, that was very well illuminated by moonlight) from behind a lite barked, large mature (birch or beach) tree, and moved rapidly to the west, toward the direction one investigator had set out the bacon bate, hair trap, and game cam.
To describe the shape of the figure: It was thin and had a forward leaning gait. During this brief observation, I saw the top of the figure rear back and then go back forward again, before I lost sight of it. It never re - emerged from behind a set of two large trees, that were closer to my location. I noticed no eyeshine or arm swing, and could not define the head area (definitely was a rounded top) of the figure, very well.. from the rest of the body. I'm uncertain, if I viewed the entire length of the figure, or only saw it from the waste area...up. I say this, because I did not notice any leg movement. One thing for sure... the dark figure covered 20 plus yards, in less than 2 seconds. It seemed to me... to almost glide through, in a very rapid, smooth motion. The thin moving figure, was as dark in appearance, as the darkest objects (more distant trees) in my FOV, accept for the top head and rear upper body area, that was illuminated by moonlight. The observation lasted between 1 and 2 seconds, to my best estimate. Upon seeing this, I unleashed an emotional outburst, that caused me to fall forward and drop my goggles, and almost tumble down the hill in front of me. The fact that spotting this figure.. caught me by surprise, and the fact that it made no sound while on the move…did freak me out, and seemed almost unreal. It was however, very real. I was immediately joined at my position by the two others, asking me if I was alright, and what had happened, and about what I had seen. The view in the goggles, was as good as this night vision instrument gets, with some great assisted moonlight. Although there is some graininess with these Gen 2 goggles, the view was clear enough to see the details I have noted. The view was the typical green tube intensifier background. My on site estimate of the figure being 100 yds from me, turned out to be, not accurate at all, and an overestimate. This is due to the 40 deg view in the goggles, which gives somewhat of a tunnel vision, that can cause objects to be perceived as being further away, than they actually are. Here are the pair of goggles, I was using:

Shortly after the sighting, One of the investigators walked down to the spot where the moving figure first emerged, while I covered him with the NV. After doing some comparisons to him, in the same position… what I saw, was not any bulkier or wider (possibly less) than him, and not much taller (less than a foot). That evening, and the next day…we came up with no additional evidence that anything had passed through the sighting location. The leaf litter was heavy, and although we searched the area for signs of anything (hair, prints, breaks, skid marks on the forest floor)..we found nothing.
In addition to what I mention here, we heard the tapping knocks, some interesting howls or strange owl sounds from a distance, and a distinct (several second) growl sound, from the trail (near the creek) on our walk back to base. Here is a growl (# 3, and the first sound on the short Youtube spectrogram video), for comparison.. that sounded almost identical to what we heard. The following audio, was recorded by another investigator, on a solo outing.. several years before, in the same general area of the eastern Adirondacks:

The theory and speculation of this sighting:

The three of us had discussed this incident on site, both Saturday night, and the following day on the revisit. The exact route of the figure, was in question. We all saw where it probably came from, and the route it took, based on what I saw. It is on the question, whether this figure was responsible for the tapping knocks, that we all heard, earlier in the night OP session. It is also a theory, that the figure did a sharp turn, and headed back south into the deeper forest…possibly after hearing my outburst, from my location on the knoll. More theory could be, that the call blast (orangutan vocals) done by the investigators in the basecamp.. could have put it on the move. The timing was certainly right. Whether this call blast had a positive or negative reaction on the figure, would be impossible to even speculate. In my case, if this call blast did indeed put this figure on the move… it was certainly a positive thing.

Summary thoughts:

I refer to this sighting as a “figure”. This is what I saw, a dark figure. Nothing that I could see from this distance and brief sighting, could define this as a sasquatch. I did however, think about something I saw on a website report, that very much resembled the shape of this moving figure. This is what I was thinking about in the field, soon after the sighting, and it stuck in my mind:

Only the overall shape of the dark figure I saw, resembled the top sketch, in this BFRO report from 1990. I saw no face, arms, or even leg movements…which make me wonder, if the legs were in a depression, and out of my line of sight. The figure I saw was very thin, and when I compared it to my fellow OP investigator (from the same viewpoint)…was not any bulkier, and possibly less so.
In addition, the way the head sat on the body of the moving figure, resembled (very much), how the head sits on the body of the creature, from a sketch made by Whitehall, NY artist, Eric Miner (note the attached photo..with all credits to the artist mentioned). Also note, that I am only using this photo, to compare what is noted above, and the general posture of the figure, I saw. I did not see any face, or closer details, other than what I have described.
Any skeptical thoughts (including my own), that this could have been a man moving that fast... in that kind of terrian, out in the dark forest with no light, and making no laughable. Whether others chose to believe me, is totally up to them...and bothers me not, either way. Speaking of laughable.. I'm still snickering over the call blasts silencing the group of partying youths on the road, and hearing basecamp's radio transmission from the field. To silence the boom box, on a quiet night in the forest...was priceless .

This sighting offers no proof of anything to anyone, but confirms for me…that something is definitely out there, in this area. This was a team effort by all involved in the expedition, and the NESRA members that scouted this area, and have also had experiences (that did indeed, resemble my sighting) there, in the past.