Umatilla Indian Reservation Bigfoot Howls?

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on January 26th, 2013

Bigfoot or animals? Strange sounds coming from swamp on Umatilla Indian Reservation

PENDLETON — Baby foxes or Bigfoot?

The eerie late-night serenades began in November and emanate from a brushy swamp on the Umatilla Indian Reservation east of Pendleton. The cries range from high-pitched screams to basso profundo roars.

“It’s causing an uproar around here,” said Sylvia Minthorn, who lives in a tribal housing unit near the swamp, where she used to play as a child.

She’s seen grown men’s hair stand on end when the shrieks commence.

Colleen Chance, a tribal housing authority employee, keeps a recording of the howls on her iPhone.

“It’s kind of spooky,” she said. “Some say it’s foxes, some say it’s a female coyote and some say it’s Sasquatch. I don’t know what it is.”


So far no one’s pinpointed the source of the noise on this rugged 178,000-acre reservation that extends into northeastern Oregon’s Blue Mountains and is home to about 1,500 people. The swamp in question borders the old reservation community of Mission, in a canyon north of the Wildhorse Resort and Casino.

Phone calls about the wails started coming in last month to the housing authority, and the office has had a half dozen so far. More could come in because the cries are continuing from time to time.

Some tenants of the reservation’s 190 rentals and 32 homes admitted being afraid and one man reported that his dogs were too terrified to go outside, said Josh Franken, the housing authority’s interim director.

“This guy was rather scared himself,” Franken said. A rumor quickly spread that the cries were made by “a young Bigfoot that had got separated from the rest of his clan,” he said.

It’s difficult to shrug off the accounts, said Marcus Luke, a housing authority homeownership counselor. Many on the reservation “are woodsy-type folks,” familiar with animals and not prone to taking fright at nighttime commotion, he said.

Some members of the Confederated Umatilla, Walla Walla and Cayuse tribes believe the noises come from Bigfoot, the mythical manlike creature said to roam Pacific Northwest forests.

What do the Cryptomundians think?

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.

10 Responses to “Umatilla Indian Reservation Bigfoot Howls?”

  1. PhotoExpert responds:

    That sounds like a fox to me.

    Honestly, the first time I heard a fox making those noises firsthand, it was creepy. It was the first time I heard it. And it makes your skin crawl, especially if you can not identify the animal at the time it occurs. I later found out it was a fox making those noises. Not so spooky anymore when I hear it on occassion.

    I definitely understand why there is an uproar about it. But that is one of the noises that foxes make. But who knows, people claim BF can imitate the sounds of other animals and maybe that is what is taking place here. I could not hear any lower tones in the audio sample for a long enough period of time. Maybe that would have made me exclude foxes. But then again, it could be the fox is making the high pitched scream noise and another animal is responsible for the lower pitched noises. Another animal may simply be responding to the fox’s noise. But the people there are assuming one animal is making the noise, thus coming to the conclusion it must be a BF because of the variances in pitch and tone.

    Definitely a fox making that noise as far as I am concerned.

  2. PoeticsOfBigfoot responds:

    So which one of you field dudes is up there checking it out? I mean, if you’re gonna do it, you may as start looking there, right? Who calls dibs? And don’t wait for the catamaran blimp, it’ll be too late.

  3. Johnzo responds:

    Terrible recording, but if I were a betting man I’d put my money on cougar. I’ve heard them in the wild several times and their unsettling screams sound a lot like this.

    Of course you can say that bigfoot like to mimic cougars (and coyotes of course)… to which I have no response.

    It seems like I’m always posting from a skeptic’s standpoint… but if I didn’t believe in the possibility of these creatures I wouldn’t be here.

  4. Goodfoot responds:

    Ask the FB crew; they’ll surely know!

    Seriously… bobcat or lynx.

  5. Wiseman responds:

    Come on now this is definitely a female red fox’s mating call.

    Heard it two years ago, thought it was a woman being aggresed at first.

  6. Kronprinz_adam responds:

    Seems like a task for the “Falcon Project” airships…

  7. AreWeThereYeti responds:

    Foxes? Cougars? Bobcats? Lynx? Or, maybe even bigfoot? Who can say for certain?

    Unfortunately, the quality of of the recording leaves MUCH to be desired. So, until/unless some cleans it up, you can hear pretty-much whatever you want-to in it.

    Soundsquatch? Audiosquatch? Anybody….?

  8. MR JOSHUA responds:

    It could be a Red Fox or a Fisher. What I do find interesting is that it does match up rather nicely with the 1978 Snohomish howls….just with a lesser degree of power in voice. I honestly don’t think Native Americans would be making such a buzz about Fishers, Red Foxes, or Bobcats. I think it is worthy of an investigation. I could be wrong and they really just want to meet “Bobo.”

  9. dconstrukt responds:

    curious why this stuff isn’t filtered by a pro BEFORE going on tv and before people jumping to conclusions?

  10. maslo63 responds:

    Sounds like every fox I’ve heard in the outdoors and on Youtube.

Sorry. Comments have been closed.

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