For the Finding Bigfoot Haters

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on March 11th, 2013

For those that say the show is detrimental to Bigfoot research…

Finding Bigfoot’s biggest surprise

Two cast members from Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot answered questions and signed autographs for the more than 100 people who’d come to see them at Stetson University last night, where I teach. I’d talked with the cast at a press event last summer, and when they mentioned they enjoyed talking with student groups, I suggested we set something up if they were ever in Central Florida.

What surprised me most was their interaction with the group of people who showed up to see them, and those viewers’ level of engagement with the show: there were many college students, of course, but also local families, and professors and their children. This wasn’t a crowd of crazed Bigfoot hunters, though there were certainly some of those, but instead of people who are inspired by what they watch together, including kids who are excited to go outside an explore—because of a TV show.

Even more incredible was that, after the presentation, Cliff and Ranae lingered for more than 90 minutes to sign autographs and take pictures—and not just one picture, multiple pictures in multiple configurations of people. They did not have to do that, and certainly did not have to give the time and attention they did to every single person who talked with them.

They also had serious, in-depth conversations about their work and even their personal lives with students and others. I have never before seen that level of passion, commitment, and impact from a reality show’s stars.

I only wish the show could include some of that. But obviously, it’s doing its job.

Source: reality blurred
by Andy Dehnart

About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

13 Responses to “For the Finding Bigfoot Haters”

  1. Myth Inc. responds:

    I concur. I’ve seen the lines of children swarming Bobo too. Anytime television is involved concessions are made, ratings are considered and segments of the market are targeted. While I would not recommend the show as a “How to Guide” to a novice in Bigfoot research, the show has done an admirable job of increasing public awareness and acceptance.

  2. gridbug responds:

    Getting high ratings with casual everyday viewers doesn’t translate into quality entertainment e.g. Honey Boo Boo and the Kardashians are ratings hits that do nothing to inform and educate. Finding Bigfoot is not doing cryptozoology a service just because people like the show. True, the methods and terminology that Finding Bigfoot employs may make it accessible for Joe Average to get out there and “squatch around” by howling and banging trees with a baseball bat, but it does nothing to further scientific acceptance of this subject where it truly counts. Finding Bigfoot is Reality TV, not a Smithsonian documentary. And it’s still little more than vapid rubberneck entertainment at the most.

  3. slappy responds:

    99.9% of Bigfoot discussion is vapid, from the lame ‘verified’ blobsquatch videos all over the net to the sloppy near-science of recent ‘research’ to the breathing carpet clips that allegedly show a sleeping creature.

    It’s mostly garbage and to judge it by any scientific measure results on embarrassment.

    Getting people curious is cool. What they do with their curiosity is unpredictable.

  4. cryptokellie responds:

    Firstly, I am not really a “Finding Bigfoot” hater but in all seriousness, these sassoons are not going to find Bigfoot. Reading Moneymaker’s background proves to me that he is no fool and knows what today’s voyeuristic, reality tele-viewers are going to trend toward. The moment I heard “Squatchy”, and “We know squatches do this”, they lost me but it works for the addicted and low-information viewers. This is NOT a put-down, merely an observation of present day programing which has to provide good ratings to stay on the air.

    It has always been my opinion that the best way find or prove that Bigfoot does exist would be to hire a world-class tracker/survivalist and let him/her loose for a year in a Bigfoot high traffic area. A video log could/should be kept and then edited into a program format…more likely a documentary special. Sounds not too exciting?…perhaps that’s why I’m a sculptor and not a media executive.

  5. Averagefoot responds:

    gridbug pretty much nailed it as far as I’m concerned. I don’t hate the show or anything, I just consider it reality TV garbage and a ratings grab.

  6. DWA responds:

    I agree. With everybody.

    This show isn’t doing bigfoot science a favor. At all. In fact, it is providiing loads of unwarranted laugh opps for lazy mainstreamers who use it as yet another excuse to avoid addressing the evidence.

    But then there’s this:

    A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. – Max Planck

    And then there’s this, on which I have remarked numerous times here and elsewhere:

    Every time new reports come in on the BFRO site, they are dominated by encounters either this year or last. That never happened – ever – before “Finding Bigfoot.” In fact such reports were downright rare. People can say what they want about that, but I read the reports, and one very logical conclusion can be drawn: people having encounters know where to report them now.

    That show is very problematical.

    Right now.

    But it may be growing the evidence, and the generation that will finally follow that evidence to a conclusion.

  7. faron27 responds:

    this smells squatchy :} come on… no one’s judging Finding Bigfoot based on their personal relationship with the people that pay their check! Bigfoot is supposedly the most elusive creature to walk the earth soooo lets run through the woods making a bunch a of noise and take thermal images of bovine?
    I think the show is good for entertainment but bad for Cryptozoology…

  8. MR JOSHUA responds:

    The most problematic thing for me is the spike in reports on the BFRO website as I do not think it is valid. I think you can attribute the surge in sigtings more to people wanting to make things up or hoax videos to be “on TV” than having an actual sighting. I liken it to the spike in UFO sightings after Roswell or the Spike in Loch Ness sightings after the Surgeon Photo. If you read most of the BFRO website new sighting postings they will end their entry with “you guys gotta get down here!” Lets also take a look at this season’s video evidence. Very, very lame and clearly hoaxed. Even the Finding Bigfoot team has been skeptical of almost every video. I will stand by my opinion that anything outside of the remote Pacific Northwest should be treated with the highest skepticism. I think right now you are looking at a lot of hoaxers trying to put their town on the map and themselves on TV. I won’t even touch the scientific methods deployed by this show to identify sasquatch habitats.

  9. Iceman responds:

    So shooting fireworks off, or blaring disco, in the woods won’t attract squatchs? Curse the Finding Bigfoot team. I thought it was supposed to be an educational show. I am filing a grievance with that network!

  10. DWA responds:


    Well I can tell you this: staying someplace for three days and doing those things won’t get you squat[ch].

    My evidence?

    Finding Bigfoot.

    Of course, the TBRC is finding out that staying a bit might be the thing to do.

  11. DWA responds:


    “The most problematic thing for me is the spike in reports on the BFRO website as I do not think it is valid. I think you can attribute the surge in sigtings more to people wanting to make things up or hoax videos to be “on TV” than having an actual sighting.”

    What’s your evidence?

    As I said, I read the reports. They don’t sound like that to me. They sound like what I have been reading since long before this show.

    You think people just do this? Do you? Do any of your friends and relatives? Does any single person any of those people know?

    I would bet cash money – quite a lot – on NO. If I thought it would get anywhere, which I don’t. It’s also unnecessary.

    If there is no evidence that the eyewitness is lying…well, what is the evidence that the eyewitness is lying?

    Occam says this:

    People are now reporting because the show tells them where to report.

    That’s the purely logical rational way to see this. Because that is how people work.

  12. MR JOSHUA responds:


    I have been reading up on reports on the BFRO website since I first read about the site in the afterword in the excellent fictional book “The Shadowkiller” by Matt Hansen. That would ball park my research at about 2006. Most reports came from the Pacfic Northwest, some scattered through midwest and a pretty good amount in Ohio/New York/Florida. Fast forward to present day in the “Finding Bigfoot Era” and all of a sudden recent sightings are happening in RI, CT, MA, etc. Now most of these are not recollections from days of old, but very recent. Take for example footprints found in Leominster State forest in MA. (I live across street). It was featured on RI episode of Finding Bigfoot where footprints were cast, grunts heard, etc. I am friends with dozens of hunters and I am an avid fisherman, hiker, and camper. There is absolutely no way a bigfoot could sustain in central mass without constantly being detected and footprints found. Do you think (and article was posted in local paper about town hall 2 months ahead of time) that a quick fake footprint and story was cooked up to land these folks on TV (which it did). There is my evidence to support my opinion. Now I cannot disprove that people are not seeing sasquatch in unlikely places, but I also know people love to get their name in a paper or their face on TV.

  13. DWA responds:


    That’s more assumptions than I am willing to make.

    Great sasquatch habitat abounds in MA. (Just drive the interstates.) And many other places. Along with outdoorspeople who will make damn sure no one knows what they saw and heard. Unless they, maybe, put it online anonymously. Or just as likely, not. Those, I believe, are at least as safe assumptions to make as the ones you do. And sighting reports back them up.

    It’s a necessity of human existence to take people at their word unless explicit reason exists not to. Try navigating a day any other way. You do it all the time. Same principle applies here. If you can offer nothing but a very-likely-incorrect assumption about why someone is saying something, well, knowledge lies in the direction of not assuming.

    I want to know what these people are seeing. Assumption won’t get me there.

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