The 36-year-old Oscoda resident was willing to talk about the Bigfoots he’s heard or seen, but at the end of the interview, declined to have his name published. We’ll call him “Jim.”
He readily shared how to find the trail to his hunt camp in the Huron National Forest, not far and directly west from Harrisville, on the south side of M-72, not far from Mikado.
He reports that in all three accounts, he was with friends, so there are other witnesses.
And he doesn’t care if you believe him – or not.
Like most other Bigfooters, he knows what he knows. He’s seen what he’s seen. He’s heard what he heard and it was enough, for him.
And perhaps most delicious for believers who long for a sighting of their own, all accounts occurred in the not-too-distant past.
The first encounter took place in 2014, or 15, he can’t really remember exactly, at his buddy’s Hunt Camp, which “Jim” describes as a “mini-house – nice, with a generator – you know, like off the grid,” about a mile and a half from any road.
“It was dark, and quiet,” he said, adding the camp house was surrounded by thick woods. “Jim” was getting ready to fall asleep for the night, in a chair. “And I heard the worst scream next to the window – right next to my head.”
The hair on the back of his neck stood up, “And I was not going to go out there and look and see what that was. An old guy at the camp said it was a cat in heat – but I didn’t believe him. I was scared. I’d never heard anything like that scream.”
The second encounter took place on November 14, 2019, the day before deer rifle season began, said “Jim,” adding, “You don’t forget a date like that.”
He was on state land, with two friends. The first in his company – the second had headed off with his dog – a Chesapeake Bay Retriever – to put a tree stand in place so that it would be ready for the next morning.
Standing at the top of a hill on a Y-shaped path at the point where it meets, “Jim” and his friend saw a figure standing about 55-yards below. At first, they thought it might be their buddy – but he would have had his dog with him. And there was no dog.
Then it registered that the figure was about 7-foot-tall, 350 pounds, with broad shoulders and a narrow waist, covered in dark hair.
“What the ***** was that?” his buddy asked, as the figure bolted for the woods adjacent to the path.
“Jim” said he knew what it was. So did his friend. The two men remained fixed at that spot, awaiting the third man’s return. When questioned, the third man reported seeing nothing unusual.
But that was the end. “Jim” said, he was done with that spot.
On Nov. 15, 2022, about 3 to 5 miles away as the crow flies from the land where he’d had his first two encounters, “Jim” was in his buddy’s camper, getting ready to head off to his own Hunt Camp for the night.
From the darkness outside he heard a loud “Whoop!”
“There was no way I was going to sleep alone,” he said, ending the idea of a walk back to his camp. “It was just like people say they hear. It was letting me know it was there. In the morning I was like ‘get a deer and be out of here.’ I killed the deer and left, it was about 10 minutes to eight.”
Jeff Hansen is a volunteer investigator with the Bigfoot Field Research Organization. The long-time Oscoda resident has been on numerous BFRO expeditions in Michigan and Wisconsin, and while he’s never seen a Bigfoot himself, he does say “I’ve had strange things happen that were hard to explain.”
“It’s not unusual for (people who have had a Bigfoot encounter) to want to remain anonymous,” Hansen said. “They may tell someone about their sighting, or they may not, they don’t want to be ridiculed and made fun of by family and friends. In my experience people are very secretive when it comes to these creatures.”
And there’s another reason, he said.
“They don’t want people coming and disrupting things, the land, property, they know (the creatures) are there and they don’t want people coming and looking and upsetting the relationship they have with them. They see them. They know they are there. And they are amazed!”
The Oscoda AuSable Chamber of Commerce is hosting two Bigfoot Bash events this upcoming season – so mark your calendars now!:
Bigfoot Pre-Bash, Saturday, June 3: At the Shoreline Players theatre in Oscoda. On stage will be Michigan Bigfooters who are making a name for themselves in the Bigfoot world. The event will also feature a Town Hall where locals and others can tell their personal Bigfoot encounter stories. The day will also mark the official kickoff of a Bigfoot lyrics contest – a parody sung to “Home on the Range,” with prizes, and the winning lyric added to the song for its stage debut at the September Bash. Raffle tickets will also be on sale for a chance at a “giant” Bigfoot statue carved by Justin Le Course of Oscoda. Tickets for this raffle will be on sale all summer long, with the winner drawn at the Bash in September.
Bigfoot Bash, Friday and Saturday, Sept. 29-30: At Oscoda High School, featuring to date, Bigfoot Field Researcher Cliff Barackman. From 2011 to 2018 Barackman co-hosted Animal Planet’s “Finding Bigfoot.” He currently co-hosts the popular “Bigfoot & Beyond,” podcast. Barackman will lead an exclusive night search in the Huron National Forest. A Vendor Expo will also be on site, with all things Bigfoot, natural and made for the outdoors. The event will feature a Kids’ Area with Bigfoot crafts and fun, and local eateries and bars will be offering Bigfoot specials. The winner will also be drawn for a locally carved “giant” wooden Bigfoot statue, and the winning lyrics to the official Bigfoot Song will make its stage debut with the Sunrise Strummers! Plus so much more! Note: Lyric’s winner does not get on stage – only the lyric!
To get updates on both events, go to our Facebook Page and oscodachamber.com. For sponsorship information or how you can get involved, call (989) 739-7322. And if you’ve seen or heard a Bigfoot, and want to be part of another story, call that same number and leave your name and number!