Conspiracy Corner – Bigfoot

Welcome back, Squatchs, to this week’s Conspiracy Corner. From the silverback gorillas of Africa to the humpback whales across the oceans, our world has no shortage of fascinating creatures. Yet, many believe that there are countless species that exist on the fringes of man’s knowledge, where the light of science has not fully reached. They are known as cryptids, animals believed to exist but science has yet to prove. In North America, one in particular has dominated the public consciousness: the Sasquatch. 

The Sasquatch is a tall, hairy humanoid of muscular build, often described as resembling a cross between man and ape. The story of Sasquatch goes back centuries, finding its roots in the folklore of various Native American tribes. One such tribe was the Sts’ailes people. They gave the creature the name ‘Sasq’ets’, a predecessor to the modern term “Sasquatch”. 

It is better known to people as ‘Bigfoot’, a name dating back to 1958. The origin began in an article by Betty Allen in the Humbolt Times. According to it, loggers reported large footprints of some bipedal, humanoid creature. 

The moment that forever cemented Bigfoot into the cultural DNA of America was the infamous “Patterson Footage”. In 1967, two friends, Bob Gimlin and Roger Patterson, went searching for the creature. To this end, they journeyed on horseback to Bluff Creek, California. Standing along a sandbar, they caught sight of movement in the distance. Acting quickly, they readied their camera and caught around a minute’s worth of the most famous Bigfoot footage in history. 

If you wish to see the footage yourself, it is easily accessible online. In it, you can see a large, ape-like creature walking through the clearing. Yet, the creature moves on two legs instead of using its arms to support itself like a gorilla or large ape would. Chillingly, you even get a glimpse of the creature’s face as it turns in the direction of its observers. 

The first thing many skeptics will claim is that the footage was a hoax. Yet, the footage itself has never been proven to be fake. Many experts who have examined the film agree that if the creature simply is a man in a costume, it would have to be one of the greatest costumes ever made. The detail you can make out of the creature’s body is significant, with an irregularly shaped head, distinct muscles, and accurate movement of joints. 

Ever since then, America has seemed obsessed with stories and encounters around Bigfoot. According to the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization, there have been 3,313 sightings of the elusive half-ape over the course of the 20th century. Most of the sightings seem to conjugate in the Pacific Northwest and all along the rural East Coast. 

However, it’s not just America that has strange ape-men. No, the ‘Sasquatch’ and their distant relatives seem to be a global phenomenon. There is the Yeti of Tibet, the Yowie of Australia, the Orang Pendek of Indonesia, and the Rock-Apes of Vietnam. Everywhere humanity lurks, there inevitably seems to be stories of some large ape-like creature. Perhaps this hints to some truth in the legends? 

Despite typically being seen as a solitary creature, it is believed that the Sasquatch is not an individual cryptid (like the Jersey Devil or Loch Ness Monster) but rather one of a large, breeding population. This is believedin part, due to the geographic scope of the sightings as well as a handful of sightings where a group of Sasquatches were seen operating in a family unit. 

Unsurprisingly, given the creature’s far-reaching reputation, the Sasquatch has found itself the subject of quite a few conspiracy theories. The most prominent is that the government is aware of these creatures throughout the world and actively covers up their existence. Some advocates of this theory go so far as to say that the government has even disposed of Bigfoot corpses after the Mount St. Helen eruption and again after the California wildfires. 

A number of theories surround the origin of the Sasquatch creatures. Some believe them to be the missing link between humanity and primates as theorized by evolution. Others that the Bigfoot is an alien or from another dimension. Some even speculate that the Sasquatches are remnants of an ancient human race, closer to our Neanderthal ancestors than the modern man. 

Be it the missing link between humanity and his primate ancestors or an undiscovered species or beings from another world, Bigfoot has woven itself into the fabric of our culture. Among the cryptids hiding in the woods or below the sea, the Sasquatch has claimed the throne as the king of monsters as well as the ‘Hide n Seek’ champions of the world.