Published: 10:21 AM - 06-21-11
It was the image of her crossing that dry riverbed that first grabbed my attention. I must have been but a mere 8 years of age. I used to sit quietly and page through my father’s old book on the subject of the world’s mysteries.
A large brown book filled with interesting photos of “ghosts”, “sea monsters” and mysterious spots around the world. Spots like the infamous Bermuda Triangle.
But it was the image of her colossal self that transfixed me. Her stride as she moved with great efficiency through the rocks and boulders. The iconic look she flashed at the camera that captured the world’s attention and consequently propelled her into every conceivable outlet of pop culture.
But it wasn’t just that there existed this photo of what many believed to be a mythological creature. No, not at all. It was the expression of Patty’s face that told the story of that bright day in Bluff Creek. The expression on her face conveyed an emotion that I know all too well.
It’s as if the blurry image of her face pantomimes embarrassment and fear. An expression that takes me back to early years as a klepto. Once the long arm of the law slams down on your shoulder, embarrassment turns into fear as the gravity of the situation becomes clear.
Three creatures from the same tree, but from opposite branches. Humans and Bigfoot. The tension must have been thicker than the heavy malodorous musk that permeated from the Bigfoot.
Here, God’s own creatures, who have never encountered each other, became aware of each other’s existence as well as their own. The men frightened at the sight of the behemoth creature and they also must have been embarrassed to have startled such a majestic creature in its domain.
Patty must have been extremely embarrassed to have been caught in the open like that. As you see her swing into her stride, she keeps a close watch on the humans and makes a frightened exit into the woods as quickly as she can.
That was the moment in which I felt my heart race with excitement over the possibility of this creature’s existence. Bigfoot was real and this was proof. I was ready to leave behind what I believed to be an impossibility and explore new territories and chose a common ground between science and myth.
The Patterson/Gimlin footage is considered by many to be probably the best evidence of Bigfoot’s existence. No foot cast or other piece of film has stood up to the harshest of scrutinies as the Patterson/Gimlin film. Recently though, there has been some chatter about a new piece of evidence that could eclipse Patty.
I became aware through a press release that one of my contacts in the paranormal had stumbled upon an extraordinary discovery. A full impression of a Bigfoot’s face, complete with six inch long lips, wrinkles, eye sockets and the outline of oily pressed hair between face and glass.
This print was found on the windows of Jeffrey Gonzalez’s truck. A lucky break for a Bigfoot investigator. Not much else is known about the discovery. All I can think of now were the words that I read in the press release: “most convincing evidence since the Patterson film of 1967“.
I emailed Jeffrey, who runs the Sanger Paranormal Society in order to try and get more information on the developing news. A few hours later I get a reply from Jeffrey which just said: “Javier, give me a call! I will tell you all about it!”
I initially called Jeffrey while I was on the Metro going home from work. He wasn’t in the position to talk so I had to return the phone call the next day. Although Jeffrey was at work when I called, he was happy to set some ten minutes aside and fill me in on what was going on. “It’s been crazy the last few days, but we’re all very excited” Jeffrey said.
He had posted an photograph that he took of the imprint using his iPhone. The photo was posted on Facebook first, but as soon as Jeffrey’s other colleagues saw the public’s reaction to the photo, they knew that what they were sitting on could be big. Real big. So they decided to pull the photograph from the site and instead reveal the whole print to the world. A press conference was called for June the twenty third at four in the evening at some hotel in Fresno.
Of course when I called Jeffrey my mind was racing with the sour memories of the “Georgia Bigfoot hoax” in which Tom Biscardi single handedly choked the life out of his career and credibility. Double murder.
As always though, I gave Jeffrey the benefit of the doubt. I’ve put Jeffrey and Sanger Paranormal on blast before, but that was nothing personal. It was straight up fact checking. Sanger Paranormal has claimed before to be in possession of startling evidence involving Bigfoot, when all they had in the past were photos taken by a trail-cam which seemed to be heavily influenced by pareidolia. Let’s see what Mr. Gonzalez has up his sleeves.
Jeffrey, as well as other Bigfoot researchers (some from the BFRO) were penetrating deep into the Fresno wilderness the weekend of Memorial day. Their mission was to find Bigfoot.
Through trenches and mud, the team trekked through the rough terrain. Assisted by four wheel drive capable vehicles. The terrain up there is so rough that the vehicles that were not equipped with four wheel drive were automatically stuck in the mud. Jeffrey’s F-150 truck was left behind. The trip itself was uneventful except for a few strange howls during the night. Something that the team was familiar with.
A day later and the weather clears up a bit. The mud in which Jeffrey’s truck had been stuck in was drying up a bit, but not quite enough for him to pull his truck out.
“So we came back to my truck and it was stuck there. It was on a very remote location which was difficult to get to. I left everything in the truck and took off with the guys.”
A few days later, Jeffery wanted to retrieve his laptop from the truck so he called his friend to give him a lift up to the location. Upon coming up to where they last left Jeffery’s truck, they both noticed a pair of tree branches criss-crossed in the middle of the road. These branches appeared to have been left by someone who did not want anybody to come up the trail. They both though it strange that someone would do this, especially in such a secluded area.
Once the branches were removed and the area combed for footprint or tire track, of which none were found, they continued on the path. Suddenly another obstacle blocked their path. Another set of criss-crossed branches lay up the road in front of them. This time though, they were bigger.
No prints or tire tracks there either. Moving forward the ran into yet another set of road blockage, this time it took the men some time to remove the massive tree trunks that blocked the road. Yet no footprints were visible around the area.
Upon coming up the road, the men spot the fourth and last obstruction in their path. This time the trees were tremendously heavy and there were prints found in the vicinity. Although it could be tricky at times to differentiate bear foot prints to those of humans, Jeffrey believes to be able to tell the difference.
He’s seen bear tracks up in these remote parts of the woods before. The prints that were around his truck were different though. Bigger than any bear tracks that they have seen before.
What Jeffrey found next is the main reason for this article.
There, highly detailed and massively impressive, was the imprint of a large ape-like creature on the window of his F-150 truck.
“I felt like I was gonna throw up, Javier”
“…it shows the wrinkles and oily hair that was pressed up against the passenger window of my truck. What’s more impressive is that on the driver’s side, a much taller creature made even a more detailed imprint. Like it was looking inside the truck.”
I sat there listening to Jeffrey describe what he had in his possession. I know that it would be irresponsible of me to get prematurely excited about such a find. I’ve been let down countless times whenever someone claimed to have “knock-out evidence” concerning the paranormal.
This time, I was cautious. I wanted to hear from Jeffrey’s own mouth what he had found. In his own mind, he knows that this is the real deal. In my mind, I tire of the same old story. I felt like I was about to embark in another writing assignment which would only end in a dreadful manner.
This is the Sisyphean task of a paranormal journalist I guess. Although I’m in it for my own curiosity, I have to admit that most of the time I feel as though I’m wasting my time chasing pipe dreams. Time is running out and I’m not closer to finding the answers I seek.
The world has been invited. The press is anxious and the stage is set. June 23rd, 2011. In a small hotel in Fresno, Jeffrey and the rest of the researchers will reveal to the world the prints. Hair samples that were left by the creature were collected by the team. Whether DNA analysis have been made or not is not known yet. DNA can be tricky though. Since we do not have a database of Bigfoot DNA, we don’t know what to look for.
Of course, all this hoopla doesn’t excite those who have been debunking hoaxes for a long time. Cryptomundo’s Loren Coleman had something to say about all this. In a Facebook post, Jeffrey announced the following shortly after gathering the evidence:
Well, someone leaked the photo…. This photo that was leaked was a snapshot taken of the video that I took with my i phone. This photo was placed on my wall for a couple of hours the day after we got back but then I removed it. Someone saved it then they released it today. Bummer, I’m pissed….but this photo is a sucky one. We still have the drivers side window to show everyone.
Jeffrey thought the evidence was monumental and wanted to share with the world what he had found. His friend, David Raygoza suggested that he take it down immediately and do a press release. After all, this was too good to be true according to them.
Loren Coleman then posted the following comment on Jeffrey’s Facebook:
You leaked the photo. If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. First off, Jeffrey and David, don’t complain to me about all the publicity, notice, and comments you are getting. You put out a press release. That means you wanted publicity.
You leaked, released, forgot you posted, and so forth your photo. Fair use and public domain come into play. After your press release, what, did you think people would sit on our hands and not investigate? Now you have national AOL News attention because I told them about your press release, and you are “pissed” at me? OMG. Get a grip.
This is what you wanted and now you aren’t happy it is not developing in the fashion you scripted it in your head? This is media attention. You wanted media attention. You should be thanking me, not cursing me. Would you rather you were given the silent treatment? Gosh.
You can’t put out something, not take responsibility for it, and then blame everyone else for reacting to it. Think about how you are reacting to this, and chill out.
Jeffrey and David weren’t too happy that a reader from Cryptomundo downloaded and saved a copy of the iPhone photo and shared it with Loren and Cryptomundo.
Now, I don’t want to get into what they all have going on. Bruised egos or bragging rights…I don’t know the story behind Cryptomundo, Loren, David and Jeffrey; and quite simply, I don’t care.
What I do care is finding out the truth. All drama and egos aside, what we have here are men who have claimed to be in possession of evidence that might shock science. Of course, if this all isn’t just an imprint of a bear.
That was what I initially believed this all to be. Just a nosey bear smearing it’s face on Jeffrey’s truck, possibly curious or looking for food. This is what I told Jeffrey. His response was quick and stern:
“Nope, I had an ice chest fool of food in the back of the truck. If this was a bear, it would have torn my tailgate off and torn the ice chest apart…”
Makes sense to me. I’ve seen the damage a hungry bear can do to a family van. Like scissors tearing through an empty Coke can. It still does not rule out a bear though.
So why are Bigfoot researchers and Cryptozoloogists in an online war with each other over new evidence? Like I said, it could be an ego thing, bragging rights or maybe monetary. Regardless, I do hold strong reservations and lean more towards the skeptical side on this story. The “Georgia Bigfoot hoax” really burned my expectations of Bigfoot researchers and those who are wannabes.
So I sit here enjoying the circus act. Pass the popcorn because it’s about to get serious in a minute.
Between us writers, readers and armchair skeptics, we’ve always had a battle of wits with field researchers. We comfortably sit on a desk and critique the research being done and how the evidence is treated.
Which there is nothing wrong with doing, but researchers feel that we’re too skeptical and hard-headed at times. But in the end, regardless of impressive prints and flawless footage they present, there is nothing to 100% prove the existence of ghosts or Bigfoot. we go round and round and argue moot points. The skeptics Vs. The Field researchers.
So we all wait with anticipation and reservation. I remind you, as I reminded Jeffrey: This could potentially ruin Sanger’s and the rest of the Bigfoot researcher’s reputation. As far as mainstream science is concerned.
Can we say that there exists only a negative preconception of abstract science? Cryptozoology, paranormal and everything in between only gets the roll of the eye from mainstream science. Can you really blame them though? With all the drama that goes on behind the scenes and all the poor evidence that is presented and sometimes held as absolute proof by some.
We poke and prod on the dark side of science. In the end, we will know for sure what is in store for us come June 23rd.
Edited by: Brenda Booth