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Bigfoot Is Man In Suit: Nickell’s Old Argument

Posted by: Loren Coleman on August 13th, 2011

What does an “Alien Timeline” have to do with a “Bigfoot Timeline”? Apparently a lot if your research analysis works the same way with both databases.

Look, I personally have nothing against Joe Nickell. We have both gone out-of-our-ways to say nice things about each other (see here, for example). Still, I have to feel that sometimes he is out-of-his-depth when he wades into cryptozoology. Take this latest manufactured interview that he did to promote his new book.

In a new io9 article, Joe Nickell covers the same old tired ground in arguing the debunkers’ reality regarding the Patterson-Gimlin footage:

When it came time to talk cryptids, we started with the most famous, the “Bigfoot” depicted in the infamous Patterson film. Nickell has researched the issue and even befriended costume maker Phillip Morris, who claims he made a gorilla suit for Patterson shortly before the film was made. Corroborating this testimony is Bob Heironimus, who says he was the man wearing the suit in the footage. Finally, analysis reveals that the creature in the image looks like a man in a fake fur suit in many ways. “There’s an odd double-standard in that people subject the hoax claims to a high degree of skepticism without being as skeptical of some of the outlandish theories about the creature,” Nickell said.


“Corroborating this testimony is Bob Heironimus”? Okay, those in the field know Joe Nickell is in deep crap right here. Bob Heironimus’s $1000 Fox-TV driven story fell apart years ago. Phillip Morris has never been able to produce a suit that can match the Patterson-Gimlin Bigfoot. And to say that “analysis reveals that the creature in the image looks like a man in a fake suit in many ways” is a joke.

While researching his 2011 book Tracking the Man-beasts, he found a previously published catalogue of North American Sasquatch sightings. By organizing the sightings and their major characteristics into a continuum arranged by date and location, he was able to see patterns, and a fascinating theory emerged. At first, the creatures showed enormous variation in color, height, behavior, foot size and even number of toes. To suggest a single undiscovered hominid living in the North American wilderness was one thing. To suppose that dozens of different species existed, many of them in relatively populated places like Illinois and New jersey, “strains credulity,” as Nickell put it.

Then the Patterson film was made in 1967. It attracted widespread publicity and was shown on popular national talk shows. From that point forward, variations in Sasquatch sightings began to dwindle. Creatures sighted after the release of the Patterson film exhibited a great tendency to resemble the creature depicted in the film.

Okay, I thought all Lake Monsters were multiple otters, and all West Virginia Monsters (Mothman and Flatwoods Monster) were normal-sized owls, according to Joe Nickell. Now we are to view all Bigfoot as mere temporal manifestations of popular cultural imagery?

Of course, Nickell has tried to do the same thing with his “Alien Timeline,” in which anyone aware of both fields will see that he liberally adds and subtracts types and kinds to make the visuals more intriguing. Purists know that there are no direct UFO reports associated with some of the “entities” he includes on his “Alien Timeline” chart. He even throws in some non-UFO cryptids, now and then. The Lizardman, Trolls, and Mothman were never directly seen with UFOs. What has Nickell done with the sorting of data with the Bigfoot cases to complete his hypothesis assumed above? One can only imagine.

We all know that data can be viewed from different angles, just like photos of humans make be, in which heights vary due to camera position and what one stands upon:

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

115 Responses to “Bigfoot Is Man In Suit: Nickell’s Old Argument”

  1. MattBille responds:

    I have my reservations about P-G, but, if it is a man in an ape suit, it is at least, a very good ape suit. A cheap theatrical costume would have been pretty obvious when the image was enlarged.

  2. flame821 responds:

    Cherry picking data and confirmational basis? Say it isn’t so.

    But sincerely, its human nature to see what we want to and interpret the data to fit out preconceived notions of what ‘should’ be. I don’t fault him for that, I DO fault him for speaking out of his elbow regarding ‘hoax facts’ that have been disproven years ago.

    As for the lack of variation in ‘recent’ reports of bigfoot? See previous paragraph. Even if the witness is sure of what they saw, who is to say the pressure to make it more like P-G didn’t color what they reported or what the investigator documented. As was plainly shown in one of the FB shows some people have an iron clad idea of what BF looks like and discount any variation as either witness error or flat out lies.

  3. Redrose999 responds:

    My husband and I used to have a lot of respect for Mr. Nickell.

    In the past he came out with some solid provable theories for some of the cases he worked on. My husband even met him, and felt he was pretty much spot on with the paranormal. But over the years, he just started to stretch and fanatically insist his ideas were soild (even though you could prove they weren’t). Mr. Nickell has become a religious skeptic in the same way there are religious believers. He doesn’t think critically at all. He’s not looking for facts, he’s out to prove his theory is right, and he does this by attempting to destroy the credibility of the witness and the sense of wonder the audience has for the cryptid in question. He religiously pushes his theories because his ego is caught up in being a skeptic, even if he knows he is wrong. And the worse part is, he never looks at the mistakes he’s making and follows them up with improvements or new information. He just ignores the facts that are making his theory invalid.

    I remember watching a MonsterQuest episode, it was about flying huminoids. This is NOT something I have faith in as a real creature. It should have been easy for Nickell to prove it to me, but he did a half-thought out, badly designed test with balloons, and insisted it worked and looked like a flying humanoid. 00; No, no it did not, he failed to consider the weight factor or duplicate the changing weather conditions in the many cases, the shape of the creatures were not considered, even the size was not consistent, he did shabby science, and assumed the audiences skepticism in the subject would give him a free pass. He did the same thing with moth man. Again, he used a theory that I support, and failed to prove to me that it was valid. Where did he go wrong there, he ignored the idea that the Moth man flew along next to the car or was on top of the vehicle and that a cut out on the side of the road did not prove that people’s ability to evaluate size was compromised. No, If he made an owl fly along next to the car than tested for what the witnesses saw he would have duplicated the conditions, but he did NOT duplicate the conditions. Yes it would have been dangerous, but unless he does duplicate the conditions he can’t say he proved anything. It’s not science! Anyway, sorry for ranting, but this does not surprise me at all. The world has gone Cryptid crazy, and Nickell is just trying to get his say before he’s made a fool of.

  4. Weezy responds:

    I am not a fan of Nickell, and not because he’s a skeptic, because there are solid skeptics out there, ones that make good cases. Every time I see Nickell though he’s just out to say everything paranormal or of the cryptid variety is fake, EVERYTHING, he’s an extreme skeptic. It’s the opposite end of the spectrum of extreme believer, somebody who buys into everything, with little facts. He’s down on everything, always, seemingly just because, and I’m not a fan of that, not everything has to be discredited.

  5. bigfoots responds:

    Two thumbs Down for his smug un-scientific approach at skepticism..
    reminds me of the wonky eyed guy on the bigfoot round table show.. I forget what it was called but the wonky eyed guy presented his theory which was that bigfoot was actually native-americans that were out doing their nature survival training..

    lol… really? thats the best you can come up with?

    when your theory is more outlandish than the so called myth then your not doing something right..

  6. praetorian responds:

    Nickell isn’t a skeptic, he’s a cynic. He enters into his “investigations” with a firmly established point of view rather than a cautiously open mind. That approach is not consistent with the Scientific Method.

  7. Redrose999 responds:

    Well said Praetorian. He is a cynic and has no sense of wonder. There is no desire to explore the situation from a open scientific point of view. Nickell is not an explorer.

  8. Redrose999 responds:

    And being an explorer is vital to being a crypto zoologist. Which is WHY I don’t see him as a crypto zoologist at all! He is only a skeptic, and a professional one at that.

  9. John Kirk responds:

    I consider Joe Nickell a friend and a a fairly good investigator. However, after having read the Bigfoot section of his new book, I am saddened to see that Joe has fallen hook, line and sinker for Bob Heironimus’ and Philip Morris’ non-corroborating stories. Morris has not produced an iota of proof that he sent anything to Roger Patterson. No documentation = no proof. Heironimus’ tale has fallen apart at the seams in 26 different important areas.

    How he can believe two guys who can’t offer any definitive proof that their stories are real in an evidentiary sense and whose accounts of their involvement in the P-G film is riddled with more holes than a block of Swiss cheese and then publish this in a book is really quite unbelievable.

    Come on Joe, you can do better than this.

  10. springheeledjack responds:

    From what I’ve seen and read of his work, Joe Nickell is exactly like the people who believe in absolutely everything without ever questioning…just at the other end of the spectrum.

    I’ve read his arguments for all kinds of cryptids out there, and I’ve haven’t been swayed. Some of the theories he’s come up with end up either being apples and oranges, or just as full of supposition and assumption as the idea of an actual cryptid being present.

    So no schocker here.

  11. loopstheloop responds:

    I speculate Loren is being a tad irritable about his ‘Alien timeline’ idea perhaps being applied to Sasquatch because he doesn’t like the UFO-cryptozoology association. Of course, to J.N. he might well treat both in the same way, as he approaches both as modern popular-culture folklore, so that approach makes perfect sense. Sure, he might be being a little tongue-in-cheek, or omitting/exaggerating for a slightly comic effect, but the reasoning is sound.

    Of course there are exceptions in the ‘mystery ape time-line’, such as the 4-toed Boggy Creek character popping up in the middle… however, he is correct that the popular consciousness formed an idea about what Sasquatch was supposed to look like due to exposure to the P./G. film. From the skeptic’s side, if that film were indeed to turn out to have been faked it explains rather neatly why people would be thinking they’re seeing similar creatures all over North America. Once the concept became televisualised it became homogenised. So before when people heard stories or read about Sasquatch and formed their own images, after 1967 they were shown a picture of what the creature were supposed to look like, and that has its own effect.

    Okay, I thought all Lake Monsters were multiple otters, and all West Virginia Monsters (Mothman and Flatwoods Monster) were normal-sized owls, according to Joe Nickell. Now we are to view all Bigfoot as mere temporal manifestations of popular cultural imagery?

    Not sure what you’re trying to suggest there… I detect a hint of sarcasm, but not sure what your point is. What do otters and owls have to do with this? It seems you’re annoyed by the suggestion that P./G. could have had that effect? Are you just scoffing at the skeptic? As in ‘sure, all lake monsters are otters, all flying monsters are owls, and now, all bigfoot sightings are imagined’? Because if so, do excuse my bluntness, that’s a pretty weak response, all things considered. I do hope I have misunderstood you here.

    Furthermore, when he claims

    There’s an odd double-standard in that people subject the hoax claims to a high degree of skepticism without being as skeptical of some of the outlandish theories about the creature…

    he is entirely correct, as comments on the issue here show. Surely one should remain reasoned and balanced on the idea and keep an open mind, rather than putting one’s fingers in your ears and cursing the non-believer… because then you’re firmly in the realm of extremist behaviour, and that tends to be quite irrational.

    It’s almost as if P./G. is sacred to so many here, and that can’t be healthy, let alone scientific. I do think some of you would do well to look at the question from both sides.

    All the best

  12. CDC responds:

    The Patterson Gimlin film has always been very simple for me.

    If it was a man in a suit…then the Patteson/Gimlin Film should have been exactly duplicated by now. Therefore in my opinion, that film is of a real animal.

    From 1967 to 2011 no one has been able to make an exact same suit and an exact same film…NEVER BEEN DONE! If some can do it, then I would say maybe…but since NO ONE HAS then I say REAL ANIMAL!

    If the science, tech, animation, and all the goodies progress has given us can not recreate or duplicate Patterson/Gimlin film…then how did they do it in 1967, 44 years ago? It had to be a real animal…maybe one of the last of it’s kind.

    Sorry Mr Nickell, this is one argument you lose hands down.

  13. Loup78 responds:

    I’ve always been baffled by the suggestion that this is a man in a suit, for two very simple reasons.

    1. Like CDC said, if it had been a man in a suit, why hasn’t anyone been able to duplicate it by now?

    2. If it were a man in a suit, the suit itself would’ve been quite the thing. If we look at a contemporary movie production, Planet of the Apes and compare those professional suits to supposed P-G one, there’s a huge difference in complexity.

    So, for me at least, the conclusion is simple: it is highly improbable that any professional could manufacture a suit like that, let alone a couple of amateurs and no one has been able to duplicate it… therefore I’m inclined to believe it’s the real deal.

  14. Redrose999 responds:

    I don’t think asking for solid proof to support your theory is making the P.G. film sacred. If he shows us the suit and backs his finds with physical evidence rather than just word of mouth, than I think folks would be willing to believe Nickell’s theory. Until then, folks will doubt him.

  15. Fausta responds:

    I always found many skeptics and many believers in cryptids or the paranormal to be similar to those who identify closely with political parties, ie. Republicans and Democrats. They are soft on the side they id with and harsh on the other. It is simple to me in the case of cryptids, they are either there or they are not. I would love so much for Bigfoot, for example, to be a real creature, but I hold reservation until I see proof of its existence. The key is I not only keep an open mind on the creature’s existence but I also HOPE it is real. Not only does Mr. Nickell not have a open mind to such things, he seems not to even want these things to exist in the first place. Kind of like the Atheist who has turned his non-belief into sort of a religion itself.

  16. loopstheloop responds:

    Again, playing Devil’s Advocate here… but I must say that the line suggesting that simply because nobody has produced a similar suit of the appropriate quality is weak. It’s largely based on the cack-handed attempt the BBC made a few years ago. Just because nobody has done it properly does not necessarily suggest it is impossible.


    I don’t think asking for solid proof to support your theory is making the P.G. film sacred. If he shows us the suit and backs his finds with physical evidence rather than just word of mouth, than I think folks would be willing to believe Nickell’s theory.

    So, you’ll believe the film to be fake only when somebody produces the actual suit used in the footage? Surely this type of attitude fairly illustrates the logical imbalance that Nickell suggests?

    Extraorinary claims demand extraordinary proof. RedRose, no offence, but I do think you’re demanding extraordinary proof for the not-too-unlikely hypothesis that P./G. was hoaxed, while you suspend disbelief for the incredibly extraordinary hypothesis that it was not. And that, surely, is exactly Mr. Nickell’s point, is it not?

    (Not attacking you at all, mate, I enjoy your comments on this site… just trying to add a little objectivity on this topic… hope I haven’t been untoward. All the best)

  17. Peltboy25 responds:

    The PG film subject analysis goes way beyond the suit itself. There are proportional problems with the subject. I’ve read studies that calculate the height of the subject at around 7-7.5 feet. Also, the width of the “man” in the “suit” would have to be unbelievable to get the type of fluid movement we see in BOTH arms at once.

    Sorry. It’s not the suit that does it for me. It’s the size and proportion.

  18. mandors responds:

    I don’t think I’m alone in being sick of the “nihilist” inquirer. Their attempts at “explaining” phenomenon scientifically are usually more laughable and outlandish then the alleged sightings themselves.

    I’ll say this again, if bigfoot is a guy in a suit–when you look at the best films and photos–then you come to the conclusion that it has to be the SAME guy, in the SAME suit for nearly 60 years from coast to coast. That’s one well travelled octogenarian.

  19. Redrose999 responds:


    No worries, I think it is a good point and I enjoy these kinds of discussions. My personal opinion on the PG film is neutral. I don’t believe or disbelieve it. I think the arguments for and against are interesting and sensible. Because of that, I think you do need extra-ordinary proof for proving or disproving it.

    Its been too long to sort out the truth from the lies and miss identifications, and when you get claims (ie a bigfoot massacre or a suit made by the planet of the apes people) about the PG film with no solid, I can hold it in my hand, proof there is no telling how true or not true they are. This is on both sides. We’ve got credited scientists, costume designers, computer analysis experts, film engineers and special effects artists and a whole host of people with credits up the yin yang on both sides of the fence claiming it’s real or a hoax. Because of that, you need extra ordinary proof the claims. For me, until I see a body, I can’t say the PG film IS real, until I get a suit, I can’t say it is a fake.

    There is just so much research on both sides surrounding the PG film it’s rather unique compared to other cryptid films, which usually are proven false quickly or are too blurry to tell. I’d say a handful have stirred as much controversy on both sides as the PG film. I suppose you could call it sacred in that context.

    I’d like it to be real, but I can’t say its evidence because a part of me wants to believe in it. It’s only evidence until someone brings a body or repeatable DNA.

  20. red_pill_junkie responds:

    As a UFO enthusiast I can say with authority that the three-eyed-giant that Nickell places between 1970 & 71 is wrong. The entity is a description of what was observed by some kids in the famous Voronezh close encounter, which happened in 1989.

  21. flame821 responds:

    suggesting that simply because nobody has produced a similar suit of the appropriate quality is weak.

    I disagree, this isn’t some obscure film that is known only to people interested in Cryptozoology, this is a world famous film. Anyone who could duplicate this film and the creature would also be world famous. Many have tried, not just the BBC or Italia or a few special effects hobbyists. This is something that many people have tried to duplicate, a few have claimed they have in fact duplicated the film but when it comes time for a hard look at their efforts they always seem to fall short.

    And you are right, extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. So if someone claims they have the suit or they wore the suit then why can’t they answer the most basic of questions or produce the suit or explain how it was made? Even if P-G or a third party destroyed the suit, I would fully expect the creator of the suit to be able to give a fairly detailed account of how it was made and what he used to construct it. Again, all have failed this test.

    So what we are left with is an amazing bit of film that HAS passed the Kodak test (lot numbers and and such), a bit of a far fetched story on how they happened to come upon this creature, but a VERY convincing bit of celluloid showing what appears to be a real, living, unknown bipedal animal.

    If you look at the evidence for and against the P-G film, at this point the ‘for’ side does seem to have the upper hand. Simply because none of the ‘against’ people have been able to prove that what was filmed is a costume or a human. They have tried and up until this point in time they have failed. I have little doubt that this film could now be simulated using CGI but we all know that didn’t exist at the time of the P-G film. And a quick browse of YouTube and Vimeo will show you the current ‘state of the art’ in Bigfoot hoaxes and they are pretty lame.

    Now as for Nickell’s view on the impact of the film on the popular mind of what a Bigfoot ‘should’ look like. He makes an excellent point. Our minds will often ‘fill in the blanks’ with what we ‘know’ or think we know. I imagine when someone sees an animal like this it is a traumatic experience, fear and excitement run high. Hormones and chemicals are release, flight or fight is in high gear; we only ‘see’ or at least notice certain things, things that would be vital to our survival. Our minds will fill in the missing parts later when we are safe. The fact that P-G is the most widely recognized image of BF, it would make sense that people would use that particular image to round out the description of what it is they saw.

  22. Benjamin Radford responds:

    Well, for what it’s worth, it’s crystal clear to me that it’s a hoax, for a long list of reasons, but I’ve always been cautious to point out that more than one person has been claimed to be in the suit. I think it probably was Bob, but I wouldn’t call it case-closed.

    The idea that nobody has duplicated the P/G film and therefore it’s evidence of authenticity is a red herring… I’ve heard the same argument about the Egyptian pyramids, that because critics have not built a full-size pyramid to prove how it could be done somehow proves it couldn’t be done. Ridiculous. Just because no one has put in the considerable time, money, and effort to duplicate the film doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Logic fail.

    By the way, I’m still waiting for the written journal evidence of a pre-1995 chupacabra that PhotoExpert promised me back in April…. My $250 offer still stands.

  23. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Ridiculous. Just because no one has put in the considerable time, money, and effort to duplicate the film doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Logic fail.

    So, by that logic, should we conclude that Patterson managed to invest more time, money and effort into the hoaxing of the film than Discovery Channel, National Geographic, and just about every other TV channel that has tried to duplicate it since?

    Maybe he found a gold mine before he became interested in Bigfoot 😉

  24. Benjamin Radford responds:

    “So, by that logic, should we conclude that Patterson managed to invest more time, money and effort into the hoaxing of the film than Discovery Channel, National Geographic, and just about every other TV channel that has tried to duplicate it since?”

    Nope, you’ve missed the point completely. Trying to exactly re-create something is far more difficult than creating it in the first place, especially when there are many unknowns, as there are with the P/G film (we don’t even know the speed the camera was set at, for starters). The terrain has changed since 1967, as well. Exactly duplicating the light, fuzziness, speed, etc. would be a lot of work, and anyway, who decides whether it’s been exactly duplicated? You? Me? Anyone can find some detail they think is different.

    Oh, and by the way, “experts” used to claim that no one could possibly duplicate the walk seen in the film–until Dave Daegling did it. Some red faces there. The lesson? Nobody had duplicated the walk, until someone did; just because no one had does not mean no one could.

    Look at it this way: Do you think there are modern painters who could exactly duplicate the Mona Lisa? Probably, with enough time and effort, yet no one has done it. I guess you think that proves something, right?

  25. bigfoots responds:

    @ loopstheloop

    there is no suit known to exist or ever exist that can replicate what is seen on that film. period..
    so at some point shouldn’t logic dictate that perhaps its not a suit?

    and btw…that doesn’t make people’s view of the film “sacred” …

    that’s just silly to say that..

  26. flame821 responds:

    Then I worked with a colleague who studies the evolution of bipedalism. Some fossils seem to indicate that early hominids were using this thing called a compliant gait–they walked with this bent-knee, bent-hip gait. In the Patterson film, Bigfoot uses a compliant gait. But people can do it. Do you ever watch Marx Brothers movies?

    When anthropologists David J. Daegling and Daniel O. Schmitt examined the film, they concluded it was impossible to conclusively determine if the subject in the film is nonhuman, and additionally argued that flaws in the studies by Krantz and others invalidated their claims. Daegling and Schmitt noted problems of uncertainties in subject and camera positions, camera movement, poor image quality, and artifacts of subject. They concluded: “Based on our analysis of gait and problems inherent in estimating subject dimensions, it is our opinion that it is not possible to evaluate the identity of the film subject with any confidence.

    “if the movie was filmed at 24 frame/s then the creature’s walk cannot be distinguished from a normal human walk. If it was filmed at 16 or 18 frame/s, there are a number of important respects in which it is quite unlike man’s gait.”

    So unless the film was at 24frames/second and the person in the costume was impersonating Groucho Marx’s ‘duck walk’ in the middle of the woods while wearing an extraordinarily remarkable costume full of padding, low elbow joints and furry breasts…

    I’m not saying that P+G didn’t hoax it, but when you talk about something being debunked yet that debunking has so many caveats its almost laughable I have to wonder which side is more ‘fanatical’ in their beliefs.

    But lets face facts, until we have a physical specimen it is just going to keep going back and forth ad nauseum. Even DNA won’t be enough to be considered proof by die hard skeptics.

  27. Hapa responds:

    “There is an odd double standard in that people subject the hoax claims to a high degree of skepticism without being as skeptical about some of the outlandish theories about the creature.”

    Now read it this way,

    “There is an odd double standard in that people subject the THEORIES ABOUT THE CREATURE to a high degree of skepticism without being as skeptical about some of the OUTLANDISH HOAX CLAIMS.”

    Notice the difference? Heck notice the similarities!!!

    What people must realize is that by and large most investigators will have apriori ideas as to what is real or not (type one: everything is possible. Type two: none of it is true. Type three: agnostic until further proof or further investigative measures are done). We also have to dig into any claim or evidence, whether we believe the claim or evidence or not (To accept hoaxer’s claims as near Gospel despite problems is like accepting someone saying they shot JFK and believing them without checking to see if they were even alive when the assassination happened! Likewise you can’t trumpet something like the Patterson video as enough evidence to catalogue a new species when a body or major parts of a body are definitely required, nor let your apriori beliefs likewise blind you to the facts.)

    I’ve read Joe Nickell before. Interesting read, writes well, though too dismissiv of the possibility of cryptids of any type. The idea that the people of point pleasant mistook a common Barn owl (repeat: COMMON barn owl) for a 5-7 foot Mothman with bat-like wings and a gliding speed of at least 100 miles per hour (Peregrine Falcons can hit around 200 miles per hour when dive hunting). A Far better down to earth canidate is the Sandhill crane (which can reach the size of Mothman, has two large red growths on each side of its head, and is not always present in that part of West Virginia, though due to several problems even this is not a perfect canidate for Mothman).

    And as for the Patterson Gimlin film: Look, its never been debunked, never come close, nor has it been 100% proven real, i.e. beyond reasonable doubt (though it is close in that regard). Having said thus, without a body it is nothing more than an interesting vid, and even with a corpse produced we may never know for 100% sure it is legit. Most likely it is, but I wouldn’t bet the devil my soul over it. But to dismiss it due to a shaky EYEWITNESS story (ala Heironomous) and a repugnance for possible discovery is laughable. People do not make discoveries by sitting at home writing pamplets for keeping from expanding knowledge: they do so by getting off their butts and exploring, searching for what might lurk around the bushes.

    And just because one does not find what one is looking for doesn’t mean we find nothing: Roy Chapman Andrews searched for the missing link in Asia, but found instead Andrewsarchus, possibly the largest mammalian land carnivore to exist, among several other prehistoric fossil species finds. Even if we don’t find bigfoot, you never know if we might not find new subspecies of Brown bear (perhaps larger than the Kodiak), or maybe even a species of North American monkey (something that could hide far better than a beast twice the size of a Gorilla due to being far, far smaller), or even a prehistoric Indian Burial mound or the remains of Cooper, the first airplane hijacker. Heck you just never know. But you cant find out when you have your nose stuck in the air , blinding your field research with an unworking brain with alterior motives not scientific, or not even doing field work at all (or something laughably called field work).

    Though I strongly disagree with those like Shermer Nickell and Radford (save for the Chupacabras), they demand something we should be willing to bring to bat: A BODY. If no body is produced, if we scan the wildnerness with super satellite or satellites and find nothing, then we must conclude the brute never existed or that it did but died out.

  28. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Trying to exactly re-create something is far more difficult than creating it in the first place, especially when there are many unknowns, as there are with the P/G film (we don’t even know the speed the camera was set at, for starters). The terrain has changed since 1967, as well. Exactly duplicating the light, fuzziness, speed, etc. would be a lot of work, and anyway, who decides whether it’s been exactly duplicated? You? Me? Anyone can find some detail they think is different.

    Now you’re just changing your initial argument. First it was “no one has committed enough time and resources to duplicate the film, but that doesn’t mean t can’t be done”; but now is “duplicating the film would be nearly impossible anyway”. What gives?

    No one is asking to build a time machine so they can re-enact the sequence with the same type of lighting, atmospheric conditions, terrain characteristics, etc etc. What has been asked by P/G advocates is that people adamant in their claim that it is a hoax produce a convincing enough suit and histrionic performance as to demonstrate the feasibility of the hoax. So far, this hasn’t been accomplished.

    Does that prove the film is authentic? NO. It simply means the film remains unexplained; although leaving some things unexplained tends to rub some folks in the wrong way –specially the ones with a habit of trying to find an easy explanation on everything under the Sun.

    Oh, and getting back to your Mona Lisa example: throughout history there have been numerous artists that have accomplished forgeries so convincing as to delude many respected art critics. Applied to P/G film in question, this would suggest that, either Patterson was a cinematic genius able to device a special effect so remarkable as to withstand the test of time, he invested more money and resources than the TV studios who followed in his footsteps, or… that the film is real.

    The latter will still be the final option until there’s another Bigfoot film that captures a creature of the same characteristics; but it still remains a perfectly legitimate option.

  29. Hapa responds:

    BTW: Calling all Bigfoot hunters: Due to the severe drought in Texas (said to be worst in 125 years), animals of all kinds are coming out of the woodwork (rattlesnakes, Opossums, Skunks so thirsty they dont have enough liquid to spray!) hunting for water. If there is a Bigfoot in Texas and other drought hit regions of North America, chances are they will be making more than usual appearances too in search of water. This means greater possibility of human interaction, being hit by vehicles, being shot…!

    Wanna shove final proof of Bigfoot/Sasquatch into the faces of men like Nickell? GET YOUR GUN AND GO BAG A SQUATCH IN TEXAS AND OR OTHER DRY REGIONS BEFORE THE DROUGHT ENDS! And please make sure you know what you are shooting at!

  30. mandors responds:

    @ Red_Pill_Junkie and Bigfoots,

    Great points. The silence in opposition (pseudo-science rationalization) is deafening.

  31. mandors responds:

    @Benjamin Radford

    You’re sliding off a cliff of logic. Speed of the camera doesn’t affect visual evidence of musculature, nor doesn’t it affect arm length, or affect facial characteristics.

    Dave Daegling did not duplicate the walk. He attempted something, and it was deemed duplicated by some biased nihilists.


    You can duplicate something, but not originate something. A person fifty years ago just didn’t walk that way. No simian walked that way, or walks that way now.

    A hoaxer, especially an alleged money seeking film maker, had no cause to fabricate that.

  32. deep_sea_monster_hunter responds:

    @Loren Coleman and everyone: I do think while you are having a little fun, and pointing out how complicated a “defense” so to speak of skepticism, Mr. Nickells positions may be, is fine. I do think also you are implying that you don’t quite understand his argument, which is here, and was discussed earlier:

    “There’s an odd double-standard in that people subject the hoax claims to a high degree of skepticism without being as skeptical of some of the outlandish theories about the creature… ”

    I also think he (Mr. Nickells) is not only clear here (it was followed with a sarcastic What?), but correct. I have come on this site many times to hear people openly debate whether BF is invisible like a ghost or can somehow sense high or low frequencies from different electronic devices.
    First, Open debate is of course encouraged here, so no problem there.
    Also, animals can often hear/ detect through senses things better than humans depending on the species, conditions, etc.,. That being said many
    people will balk at taking a skeptical look at the Patterson film, (Which I could debate for years, and people have), while simultaneously accepting dare I say *on faith* that BF can either evade electronic monitoring, or even stranger (and yes I’ve read “Mysterious America”) disappear like a ghost., Sorry, that was long winded. My point is a healthy skepticism, if that is possible, is always preferred, no matter how much we ‘Want to Believe”.

  33. CDC responds:

    @Benjamin Radford

    Sorry guys, but with the Patterson/Gimlin film, the skeptics and debunkers lose this argument and there is nothing you can do about it.

    The PG Film has been examined by the scientific community, and more importantly the television and film community.

    The reason TV and film is important is because with the budgets of such production companies as the Discovery Channel, History Channel, The Learning Channel, The Travel Channel, The Sci Fi Channel, and most of all the National Geographic Channel…all the production companies are better equipped and better financed than Roger Patterson, therefore ANY HOAXED FILM ROGER PATTERSON MADE WOULD ABSOLUTELY BE REPLICATED IN OVER 44 YEARS!!!!!!!!!!

    MonsterQuest, Animal X, Histories Mysteries, In Search Of, Unsolved Mysteries, etc, etc, etc, there have been over 100 show on the Patterson Gimlin film…and not one show has duplicated the footage!!!!!

    Youtube, college kids, prankster, hoaxster, science, everyone out there for the passed 44 years who has tried to duplicate or replicate the Patterson Gimlin Film has failed.

    This isn’t millions of tons of Pyramid, it’s a thousand dollar suit if it’s a hoax.

    Cased closed skeptics and debunkers on this one…real animal!!!!

  34. loopstheloop responds:

    Good grief… what varied responses. I’ll try and respond briefly to anyone who addressed me.

    @redRose999… cheers, mate. People do get very worked-up on this subject, as you can see. That’s what I meant by sacred… to a believer the P./G. film is pretty much the best so-called evidence for their belief… and if you question some folk react the same way as if you were questioning almost a religious belief. In that sense, some people get angry and defensive and it almost feels as if it’s bad bad manners. But we’re supposedly dealing with a scientific question.

    Personally I’d love it to be true… and there is something inherent in us that wants to believe it. Even if it is all fictional, that’s an interesting question to ponder in itself. So either way, it’s a fascinating topic.

    @Hapa… the problem for that counter is simply this: if you concede that extraordinary hypotheses demand extraordinary proof, then ask yourself… which is most extraordinary? That there’s an undiscovered bipedal great ape that descended from gigantopithecus and crossed the Bering Straits and has been hiding successfully from you all for the past 5 centuries without ever leaving so much as a dropping that you’ve ever found… or that a shady and immoral chancer who was trying to sell a creature feature in Hollywood just happened to be the fellow who managed to capture perhaps the only actual footage of this creature… and it happened to look rather like a sketch he’d done a year earlier???

    In that sense, I don’t think it’s too far-fetched to suggest that Patterson had the motive, the nature and the gumption to do such a thing. Therefore, I’m not sure I’d need to produce the suit plus a signed confession to suggest that.

    @deep_sea_monster_hunter I couldn’t agree more. Loren does seem to have misunderstood both aspects of Nickell’s arguments he decried above. Nickell’s theory is sound, and his point about the homogenisation of the image of Bigfoot post-1967 would be very hard to counter. I believe him correct on both counts.

    @mandors, your misplaced and irrational anger don’t do much for your debating prospects. Try and be calm and discuss the facts… or go and shoot something and come back when you feel better.

    @CDC I’d have to disagree… the evidence on the hoax side to me seems fairly insurmountable. We can discuss the specifics here, and see if anyone can make a cogent case in the face of the major problems that surround claims for the authenticity of the film, but it does seem that some people genuinely do not want a sensible discussion…

  35. Benjamin Radford responds:

    @ mandors: “Speed of the camera doesn’t affect visual evidence of musculature, nor doesn’t it affect arm length, or affect facial characteristics”

    No one said it did. The issue is duplicating / replicating a film. If you don’t think that a film speed is important in re-creating a film, please learn more about filmmaking.

    @ redpill: “What has been asked by P/G advocates is that people adamant in their claim that it is a hoax produce a convincing enough suit and histrionic performance as to demonstrate the feasibility of the hoax. So far, this hasn’t been accomplished.”

    1) Actually the burden of proof is on the claimant, not on the skeptic. You claim it’s real: Prove it. Since you can’t you try to turn logic on its head by saying that since no one has duplicated the film exactly, or to your standards, then that’s evidence for authenticity.

    2) There’s an even more basic error that you and other here make: that just because a few TV shows have done unconvincing re-creations of the film that that is significant, as if the world’s greatest filmmakers and special effects artists, with unlimited time and a huge budget couldn’t do it then no one could.

    You’re basically suggesting that the goal of TV is information or science instead of entertainment. That’s like saying that TV’s Ghost Hunters show is bringing top experts and knowledge to finding ghosts. Loren and I have done a lot of television, and we can both tell you that these TV shows are not about the truth, they are about what makes good TV. The fact that a handful of TV production companies (who are on low budgets, tight schedules, and doing a million other things besides the re-creations) “couldn’t duplicate” the P/G film means nothing if you know anything about television. The goal of TV is entertainment, not education.

  36. CDC responds:

    No argument really needed here at all…the facts are the facts.

    We could agree on all the possible evidence this film is a hoax…so that brimgs us back to the film, where once avoid the question why can’t a hoaxed film be duplicated in 44 years?

    Just because it could be a hoax does not mean it is a hoax.

    You ask for extraordinary proof, well here is the film, show us how it was hoaxed by doing it again.

    My argument is rock solid, in 44 years there have been 1000’s of people smarter than Roger Patterson, better financed than Roger Patterson, having better access to resorces to make a film than Roger Patterson, and even more motivated to create a film than Roger Patterson…yet NO ONE HAS BEEN ABLE TO MAKE A FILM LIKE ROGER PATTERSON!!!!!

    If you could give solid scientific evidence on how it has not been possible to recreate or duplicate the Patterson/Gimlin film then you have an argument…but since you have not to this point…then no argument here…real animal.

  37. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Actually the burden of proof is on the claimant, not on the skeptic

    Yeah, I forgot that the burden is *never* on the side of the skeptics —funny how that works 😉

    I’m not making a claim pro or con the film. You on the other hand are stating the film could be duplicated.

    You’re basically suggesting that the goal of TV is information or science instead of entertainment. That’s like saying that TV’s Ghost Hunters show is bringing top experts and knowledge to finding ghosts. Loren and I have done a lot of television, and we can both tell you that these TV shows are not about the truth, they are about what makes good TV. The fact that a handful of TV production companies (who are on low budgets, tight schedules, and doing a million other things besides the re-creations) “couldn’t duplicate” the P/G film means nothing if you know anything about television. The goal of TV is entertainment, not education.

    Oh, I get it now: since these TV shows profit from an endless re-telling of the Patterson story, then obviously they will never try their best to duplicate it and lean the scale one way or the other. It’s a conspiracy, I tell you! 😛

    Look —like I wrote previously, the jury is still out regarding the film. I’m perfectly comfortable with the fact that it remains in my gray basket. But claiming that it could be easily replicated if one had enough time, resources and (what’s more) the will to do so, and saying that is ‘proof’ enough to discredit the film is just not good enough.

  38. Redrose999 responds:


    Perhaps it is not as much as the film as the fact that there is a history behind it. There is a foundation of data that extends far into the traditions of human culture. The fact that we once walked along side other Hominids just makes it even more interesting. I think many Bigfoot researchers look at it in that perspective. There is so much information, that you need to look at, and sort out the context of it because it is consistent. So people become passionate about it.

    And Skepticism also has a long history behind it. Whether is is God, or bigfoot, there is a long history behind trying to disprove anything that someone believes in.

    In the end it is about human beings wanting to be validated. You want to be believed. Even if that means beating the horse until it died a hundred times.

    Why do people keep trying to prove or disprove the PG film and insist on proof? Because it will end the debate in the end and someone will be right. And that means social acceptance for the believer and a gratifying “I told you so” to the skeptic. It’s about winning and becoming important.

    With that said, you need to push past all this and look for the individuals who really want to do real science and research, not people who want to stop the science and research.

    We would have never discovered anything if we stopped looking it to it because some group of skeptics (think of those who were skeptical of Darwin) thought it was bunk.

    A skeptic with a critical mind looks beyond their theories, ego and ideas and looks for truth. I would like to use Bob Bakker for an example. He set out to prove with alligators that ceratopsian Dinosaurs only walked sprawled and discovered that in order to match their track ways, they would have to have legs underneath them. Years later Dobson discovered the skeleton of a Ceratopsian could only be reconstructed with the front legs sprawled and back legs under the body. Before he realized this he was trying to prove Bakker’s theory about both set of legs under the body. Thinking critically both men figured out how an extinct animal walked and how they stood, both of them surrendered their original assumptions and adjusted them to fit whatever evidence they discovered. That is science. Its not believing or skepticism. It’s discovery.

    The PG film is unique because it’s a beaten horse. Someday, someone will come up with proof that it was real or not real. When that happens, I can promise one this, lots of gloating. And lots of egos being stepped on. But it won’t be proved or disproved with questionable claims. It will be proved or dis proved with actual investigation and hands on evidence, because any other way in this situation will be shouting in the wind.

  39. Hapa responds:

    Oui, Lopstheloop.

    Extraordinary claims extraordinary evidence and Occam’s Razor. Odd that the latter was originally a tool for theological study, and now is the holy grail of skeptics and atheists.

    What’s more likely, I ask: That a rodeo rider with a tiny, laughable film budget with no PhDs in biology nor anthropology nor Native American Folklore nor Scientists in his employ nor a team of movie magic specialists could produce a film that has a more realistic creature than what we see in most movies from that period to 2011, leave tracks that could fool credentialed physical anthropologists (i.e. people with PhDs) and has withstood all attempts at debunking by numerous credentialed scientists (also with PhDs) where so many other Sasquatch films and photos have not…
    Or that those two cowboys simply filmed an undiscovered animal?

    Chad Arment in his book “Varmints: Mystery carnivores of North America”, writes about the fallacies that can come from this use of logic for both sides:

    “what is truly more simple, a correct identification or a misidentification? Isn’t it more likely that an enthusiast or a skeptic will consider “more simple” (read, “more correct”), the explanation that he or she already believes most likely? (And, of course, there are many studies suggesting that parsimony in science may not only midlead researchers, but may create bias towards incorrect explanations.”

    page 644, and

    “And then, of course, we are met with “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence,” that infamous skeptical creed. It is, of course, nonsense. The evidentiary requirements for the description of an “extraordinary” new species (say, Bigfoot) are the same as are needed for the description of a new species of field mouse. We need a body in either case. There’s nothing extraordinary about such evidence. That’s the problem with so many skeptical propositions: there’s a tendency towards subjectivity. An objective principle would be, “All claims require sufficient evidence.”


    I wonder why we even give enough credit to people like Nickell on here when he is an enthusiast for anyone claiming to be a hoaxer (a believer) yet is a skeptic when it comes to possible unknown animals, which by the way are still being discovered ever day (Luzon Lizard, Giant wooly rat, etc)? If i produced a pink monkey suit with big old red lips and said that i was the man in the Patterson film (I was nowhere near born yet), would Nickell believe me? If i had elephantitis of the feet and said I was the one who left the tracks new Jerry Crew’s Logging crew at Bluff Creek,would he believe me? If i was a disgruntled Gorilla who was jipped on the bill by Mr Patterson for starring in his flap flick and told the world so, would he believe me then?

  40. Hapa responds:

    Hello Mr. Radford

    “Actually the burden of proof is on the skeptic, not on the claimant.”

    Then why write or co write books trying to prove that Bigfoot is not a real biological phenomena? Why write books trying to debunk it if the burden of proof is on the other foot?

  41. Benjamin Radford responds:

    “You on the other hand are stating the film could be duplicated.”

    Yes, I believe it could. I’m saying that the fact that it has *not yet* been duplicated does not logically suggest that it *could not* be duplicated, which is what was said.

    “I get it now: since these TV shows profit from an endless re-telling of the Patterson story, then obviously they will never try their best to duplicate it”

    No, you don’t get it: I’m saying that I’ve been on a lot of TV productions, and they are far less interested in “trying their best” to prove a point or do good science or make a great show than finish the production, get paid, and move on to the next shoot. TV is about entertainment, not proving things. If you and others here are so sure that great talent and resources went into the handful of P/G recreations, prove it: Please tell us all how much time and effort went into these TV show recreations, along with the top-notch F/X houses and filmmakers on the project. Until you do some research to find out just how much time, money, effort, and talent went into these “world-class” TV re-creations, you’re just making unproven assumptions and guesses.

    “claiming that it could be easily replicated if one had enough time, resources”

    Actually I said exactly the opposite: That “trying to exactly re-create something is far more difficult than creating it in the first place”… NOT that it could be “easily replicated.”

    Obviously no one’s interested in hearing the opinions of people who actually know something about the subject (e.g., TV production), so I’ll take my leave.

    If anyone sees PhotoExpert, please let him know that I’m still awaiting the evidence he said would prove me wrong about the pre-1995 chupacabra. thanks!

  42. CDC responds:

    @Benjamin Radford

    Sorry my friend, but your logic is weak and you examples even weaker.

    The statement was, “I saw Bigfoot in the Northern California woods on Oct 20, 1967”. The burden of proof for that statement was supplied by the Patterson/Gimlin film.

    The film is the proof. It is now evidence.

    Now you challenge the evidence, which is perfectly right to do, but then the burden of proving that evidence to be false falls on you. That’s science Ben.

    You can supply all the hearsay evidence to support your argument the film was hoaxed…but YOU still have to prove it is a hoax…not it could be a hoax.

    This film cannot put Bigfoot in the scientific record, but it can be used as evidence if more evidence such as DNA or bones are found. Then this film, along with other scientific evidence can establish and animals existence. Simple how science works.

    “Ghost Hunters”? Really Ben?

    Okay, first TV is not about entertainment, teaching, or learning,…it’s about MONEY!

    Sponsors pay big MONEY to advertise on popular TV shows to make more MONEY.

    Each show has it’s target audience to attract viewers which sponsors in turn pay MONEY to advertise to.


    It’s about getting the viewers Ben.

    Whatever production company does a show on the Patterson/Gimlin film…I promise you Ben, they have more MONEY and resources than Roger Patterson did.

    Solid logic here Ben, you are welcome to challenge my argument…but I don’t think you can.

  43. Redrose999 responds:

    Benjamin Radford

    You mentioned you know something about the subject, I’m assuming you’ve worked on special effects or costuming. Please, tell us, how would you with the materials of that time, (and only using the materials available in the late 60s meaning fabrics, plastics, whatever), and using the funds that Patterson had available, make the Patty film? That includes a suit that would fool experts in the fields of science, and film. This also includes a advanced enough costume that one could done on scene without the help of a makeup and costume crew.

    I’m curious. If you are up for some hard questions, I’m sure folks here would like to hear what you have to say. Yes, with a budget and materials and computers from today you could make such a film. But using what was available then, can you do it? And is it worth your while to try some scientifically accurate tests to prove it?

  44. loopstheloop responds:

    @CDC… Ok… Nobody has ever produced a convincing remake of ‘King Kong’ which ticks all the boxes of my unuttered criteria. Therefore I conclude that Kong is real and living his retirement out somewhere in Florida. Prove me wrong. See, I can play that game too?… it’s fun.

    @red_pill, if you’re using the same line that just because nobody has done it it’s therefore impossible, well the same applies. It’s simply flawed logic. Nobody *had* walked in the same way as Patty in a filmed recreation, until someone bothered to, and *did*. Before that, it was supposedly impossible on here. Ben is clearly correct that it would take far more effort to reproduce exactly in the correct conditions than to make the original. And who’s stumping up for it? You reckon it would sell? You reckon it’d make money like the original? Not too sure it’d be worthwhile. I wouldn’t spend my money on it. Just because those that tried mucked it up does not mean it could not be done. Would it be a worthwhile endeavour, though? Probably not.

    @RedRose999, couldn’t agree more, mate. Excellent post.

    @Hapa, so Nickell doubts the existence of Lizardmen and Sasquatch… yet because someone discovered a wooly rat, new animals are discovered all the time, and that suggests he’s overly skeptical? Has he ever suggested that new species of animal are never discovered? Or are you perhaps simplifying and misrepresenting his viewpoint? There’s a balance here… precisely the balance Nickell suggested was lacking.

    @Everyone, there have been certain questions that surround the film that Patterson in his time, or Gimlin to the present day, have been unable or reluctant to answer. Let’s just say that many things don’t add up, and lies have been told. I don’t think that surprises many, but you still choose to take the word of a conman who has lied to you about this very subject than believe he was hoaxing you?

    I mean, I say lies have been told because of the contradictions in the physical ‘evidence’ presented and the accounts given of such, and that’s the most obvious explanation. Which leads me to ask a few questions on that issue… Patterson supposedly, it has been claimed, gave and passed a polygraph test in an early deal for film rights & interview.

    So, is there any actual record of this test that can be authenticated, or is that just anecdotal?

    Answers appreciated. Thanks folks.

  45. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Yes, I believe it could. I’m saying that the fact that it has *not yet* been duplicated does not logically suggest that it *could not* be duplicated, which is what was said.

    Hmmm.. what’s that thing skeptics love to repeat about “trying to prove a negative”? 😉

  46. Benjamin Radford responds:

    Hapa: “Then why write or co write books trying to prove that Bigfoot is not a real biological phenomena?”

    Please check your facts… I have never written or co-written any book or article “trying to prove that Bigfoot is not a real biological phenomenon.” I am interesting in investigating, not trying to prove or disprove anything. Science cannot disprove the existence of anything, including Bigfoot, so there’s no point in even trying. I’ve written three books on cryptozoological subjects, and I encourage you to read them if are under the mistaken idea that my purpose is to “disprove” cryptids.

  47. Joxman responds:

    I believe that Mr. Nickell’s viewpoints are interesting even if they breakdown after critical analysis. I think it is important for researchers to have the ability of “beginners mind” by looking at a subject with fresh eyes. I encourage the creative process of adapting to new theories and following them through the logical critical steps to a reasoned conclusion. It is important.

    I believe that the UFO and Alien abduction phenomenon exists, however I am not satisfied that is visitors from outer space. I believe that there is a more natural explanation. I’m even open to the possibility of dimensional shifting with is theoretically possible with M Theory.

    I believe in Squatch because of a personal experience I had in BC. With that being said I remain a hopeful skeptic and I require substantial proof. Belief does not equal fact.

  48. flame821 responds:

    Science cannot disprove the existence of anything, including Bigfoot, so there’s no point in even trying.

    Science cannot prove a negative, hence science cannot prove the absence of a god, or the absence of a NAPE, or the absence of extraterrestrial life. Science can only be used to prove something IS there. Black holes, bacteria, genes.

    However the scientific method can be used to guide us and repeatable results are very important. I think the biggest issues in the Bigfoot community is the quality of research. Some people are very good at documenting, cataloging and using a neutral frame of mind to determine good data/evidence, from bad or questionable data/evidence. Unfortunately other researchers seem to believe everything, regardless of how far fetched or unlikely the story seems to be. So we end up with good data and questionable data in the same pool. Which makes it extremely difficult to come up with a working/workable theory and tests.

    Knockings and howls/calls are extremely subjective. Footprints, when cast and examined by experts are less subjective. Actual sightings are, again, very subjective and you have to take a LOT of ‘fuzzy’ data into consideration. How reliable is the witness, how mature/intelligent, do they have a history of tall tales, are they used to being in the woods and do they know what a bear looks like, really looks like.

    Photos and films are our best evidence, outside of the required physical body/body part. Photos and films can be examined by many different experts in many different disciplines. The biggest problem I see with something like the P-G film is that too many people have made up their minds before looking at it, either pro or con. If it weren’t so well known it would be nice to see it passed off as a film from South America or Germany and see what the experts think of it then.

    As it stands we have had many eyes look at it and while some have claimed ‘hoax’ no one has been able to say or prove how it was hoaxed. The ‘zipper’ has only been seen by a handful of people on a copy of the original film. Apparently the gait MIGHT be reproducible by a 6-6.5 foot human if he walked like the Marx Brothers but ONLY if the film was at 24f/s, at 16 or 18f/s it can’t be done.

    Conversely people who say authentic animal do tend to gloss over a few things, like the reputation of the people involved. Now that’s not to say this isn’t the real deal, but Biscardi could literally hand me the head of Bigfoot and I wouldn’t believe him due to his past actions. The fact that we can’t determine the speed the film was recorded at seems to be the single biggest factor in the ‘its a hoax’ claim. That camera apparently had the choice of 4 or 5 different speeds, it can ONLY be a human hoax if the speed was 24, anything more or less than its real.

  49. red_pill_junkie responds:

    @red_pill, if you’re using the same line that just because nobody has done it it’s therefore impossible, well the same applies. It’s simply flawed logic. Nobody *had* walked in the same way as Patty in a filmed recreation, until someone bothered to, and *did*. Before that, it was supposedly impossible on here. Ben is clearly correct that it would take far more effort to reproduce exactly in the correct conditions than to make the original. And who’s stumping up for it? You reckon it would sell? You reckon it’d make money like the original? Not too sure it’d be worthwhile. I wouldn’t spend my money on it. Just because those that tried mucked it up does not mean it could not be done. Would it be a worthwhile endeavour, though? Probably not.

    What I just did is take issue with Benjamin’s initial argument that (paraphrasing) “the film could be duplicated given enough time, money and effort”. Then it changed to “it couldn’t be duplicated (exactly) anyway even if you wanted to”, and finally it morphed into “so far nobody has actually had the will to duplicate it, least of all TV channels because no matter the resources at their disposal, they are in the entertainment business, not the proving or disproving business.”

    I’ll finish my contribution to this thread by stating that there are believers on both sides of the argument: on one side there are people with the absolute certainty of an unknown hominid roaming the Pacific northwest because the alternative of that film being hoaxed is far less credible. And on the other are the people with the absolute certainty that in some basement there’s an old costume gathering dust because the alternative that Patty was an actual Bigfoot is far less credible.

    I look at the P-G film, and I still find it fascinating… but inconclusive. And unlike some I have no problem with saying “I don’t know” and keeping it in my gray basket until the time comes when more —reliable— information tips the scale one way or the other.



  50. crowmagnumman responds:

    I really wish Mythbusters would agree to attempt to debunk the footage through replication. Apparently, they already refused to do it. I can understand why it might seem like a pointless exercise. But it would be useful for skeptics like myself to see solid reasoning on how it could have been created in the 60s. At the moment I can’t confidently say either way whether I think the creature in the footage is a man in a suit or a real, undocumented creature that existed at the time (personally, I think that even if the creature in the footage is real, then it’s an animal that went extinct shortly afterward). Perhaps a really thorough attempt to replicate the footage won’t sway any believers, but it would certainly be of help to those of us in the middle.

  51. seawasp responds:

    My take on it all:

    1) The actual discussion is about the claim that two men were responsible for the P-G film, and that it is known how it was done.

    2) Claims of “closed-minded skeptic” or “true believer” are actually quite irrelevant to this specific argument.

    If one takes belief in Bigfoot as a religion, then proof or disproof of Bigfoot ITSELF will be a very difficult religious issue (unless, in the case of Bigfooting, someone comes in toting a body; in, say, Christianity, one is unlikely to have anyone dragging in the Almighty over their truck’s tailgate).

    However, that is NOT the situation here. This is much more akin to a claim, for instance, that you have discovered exactly how the “resurrection of Jesus” was faked, and have the testimony of those who did it.

    This is a specific and TESTABLE claim. It is not a matter of faith.

    Moreover, it is a POSITIVE claim *ON THE PART OF THE SKEPTICS* in question. It is a positive testable claim and THAT means that burden of proof DOES lie on the claimant, in this case Mr. Nickell, to demonstrate that the men in question had the motive, means, and opportunity to do so.

    I think most people are willing to grant that there may be motive, and that there could have been opportunity. This leaves us with means.

    “Means” in this case breaks down into two major categories: 1) general resources — time and money and so on — and 2) Capabilities or skills.

    This is the very sticky part. We happen to know a professional costume designer, and one who is extremely skilled and innovative, and used to making absolutely RIDICULOUS costumes with minimal time and resources. Her evaluation of the P-G film, if it was a costume, was that it would take her on the order of a YEAR of planning just to get started. And that is with the known capabilities today. The techniques to make muscle suits that exhibit the movement seen in P-G did not EXIST in the late 1960s. Many of the materials used to achieve those effects had not yet been manufactured. There are other similar points.

    The current knowledge and modeling done on the P-G film indicate that the costume, if it was a costume, was an incredibly detailed and complex structure. In the 1960s, *IF* such a costume could have been manufactured, it would have required the wearer to be essentially sealed INTO the costume. The location of filming (which has been verified multiple times, and I don’t think anyone debates it) was not one amenable to bringing up an actual makeup and effects trailer. So the poor bugger involved would have had to spend something upwards of four to five hours, if not longer, sealed into a suit (which would not even allow him to go to the bathroom) in order to then put on a blurry, two-minute performance which, as far as anyone knows, was never admitted to, never used for any significant commercial gain, and whose TECHNIQUES were never used again.

    This is what appears, to me, to be an extraordinary claim, and those contending it was a man in a costume need to either (A) explain how, and why, all of these things were done, and how the men in question could afford to do them for what appears to be no financial gain, or (B) be able to clearly, and CONCLUSIVELY, show that none of the analysis of recent years is, in fact accurate, and that the entirety of what is seen could have been done with an inexpensive and easily modified suit, worn by a man with no special training in acting like an ape, and that the metrology performed on the film is in error (i.e., it’s an ordinary height person, not a 7.5 foot giant), and so on and so forth.

    The claims against the Patterson film are either very generic — “it’s a fake” with nothing to back it, in which case it does devolve into effective religion — or, as in this case, are specific testable claims of who, what, and how. But in THAT case, the burden of proof DOES rest on the skeptic who claims to have the answer.

  52. Hapa responds:

    Buenas Noches Loopstheloop

    “So Nickell discounts Lizardmen and Sasquatch…yet because someone discovered a Wooly Rat, new animals are discovered all the time, and that suggest he is overly skeptical.”

    Well putting Lizardmen and Sasquatch in the former and comparing it with the Giant Wooly Rat is like “misrepresenting” and “oversimplifying” my viewpoint: not all cryptids are “humanoid”: most are quadrapeds and water dwelling beasties. It is very, very unlikely that numerous unrecognized large vertebrate species exist in North America alone, and therefore one would have to use comparative evidence and logic to try and figure out which ones are more likely

    (Its not impossible due to convergent evolution for a Reptile to arise that looks somewhat human, but as far as paleontologists know there has yet to be found a critter like it (though I remember reading a while back about some so-called mesozoic “man” tracks, not to be confused with the so called Paluxy Giant tracks, that were made by a theoretical dinosaur with human-like feet, but that find was highly controversial (for obvious reasons) and I would like to see a pic of the tracks before I would say more. Might not exist) while the fossil record, tough void in North America, does record human like upright primates that are strikingly similar to the North American Sasquatch, albeit differing in size and location (Paranthropus Bosei, Australiopithecines, Homo Habilis and Rudolphensis, etc). Sasquatch has a ginormous amount of circumstantial evidence behind it, while the Lizard men have comparatively little (and as recently seen on Destination truth, at least one major Lizardman was shown to be hoaxed. I think the Sasquatch is therefore far, far more likely).

    There are far more cryptids supposidly out there than Bigfoot and Lizard man, some more realistic than others (even skeptics would say as such): American Black Panthers, Lava Dwarf Grizzlies, South American Grizzlies, Bergman’s Bear, North American Lion, Mexican Ruffed Cat, Big Hoot, Batsquatch, the Bloop, Sea serpents, Chinese Ink Monkey (though biologically possible, proven to be false by Karl Shuker partially inspired by tiny Monkey fossil), Giant Monkeys, Out of place animals, Sucuriju Gigantes, Shamanu dwarf wolf,King Otter/Dobhar-chu, relict Tasmanian Tiger, Queensland Tiger, Mainland Asian orangutans, and the beat goes on…and the beat goes on…

    Are these all more unusual than the oddities (abbarations, species and subspecies) that have been proven recently or relatively recently, such as: the Bond/Bili Ape (aka Giant Chimpanzee, up to 300 lbs), Luzon Lizard (6 feet 6 inch long tree lizard that weighs only 22 lbs), Giant Muntjac, Colossal Squid, Giant Antarctic Starfish, Saola, Dingiso/Bondegezhou (Bear like Tree Kangaroo), Giant American Crawfish (nobody saw that one coming! Not even hungry Cajuns!!!), Giant African Crested Rat (eats poisonous plants, converts poison to its hair, uses poison to incapacitate prey, sometimes larger than itself), Fanged frogs, Irimote Wildcat, African Forest Elephant (not known to be different species until DNA was done long after the population was discovered. Possible source behind another cryptid, the pygmy elephant), Woodland Bison (Bison bison athabasca), King Cheetah (mutants that are larger, hairier, more agressive than normal Cheetahs), Onza (odd population of Mexican Cougars, though a different species might also be behind the myth), wild Grizzlars/Prizzlies (Polar/Brown bear hybrids), and yes that Bosavi Wooly Rat (32 inches long, 3.3 lbs, unafraid of humans (Run! Run for your lives!!!).

    Remember, Nickell’s skepticism does not rest with Loch Ness monsters, Bigfeet and Lizard-foot: it extends to many other cryptids, if not all of them. Some far more realistic than others.

  53. Hapa responds:

    Mr. Radford:

    “I have never written or co written a book or article “trying to prove that Bigfoot is not a biological phenomena”.

    But I thought that was the major focus of some of your works: to show that Cryptids have no true species basis, and often are more in the world of folklore, misidentification, and pop culture. I have as yet not been able to get my book hungry fingers on a copy of your book yet but based on what i have read about it, in it with Amazon look inside features, and the recommendation by Karl Shuker himself (which caries a lot of weight) it does a good job showing that Chupacabras has no basis in reality, other than in Cil from Species, the whippoorwill bird, misidentification, pop culture, and mangy carcasses. That’s good investigative work, and good proof that Chupacabras do not exist (though there are other species that, due to their appearance or ferocity, have been called or are similar to some depictions of Chupacabra that they could or are or can be labeled as such without having any other connection to the original Puerto Rican Mythos: Amazonian Short Eared Dog, lesser and Greater Grison (the former encountered by Josh Gates in Destination truth, a real monster due to its ferocity alone. He speculates that a larger unknown Grison might account for some of the south American sightings).

    Though I applaud you for your work on Chupacabra, I just don’t see that the skeptic has no burden of proof, nor that skeptics would have to write books like yours to try to persuade others that they do not exist. From what i have read, you have provided the extraordinary proof for your claims.

  54. Hapa responds:

    Mr Radford:

    Let me rephrase my final paragraph in the last message (I goofed up, Sorry):

    I don’t see that the Skeptic has no burden or proof. If they do not, then I don’t see why you would write books that debunk cryptids as undiscovered species. Why go through all the trouble providing good evidence for the non existence of Chupacabra when you did not have to?

    Mr. Coleman once wrote on this blog that a find of a so called Chupacabra corpse captured everyone’s attention at the same time that the Giant Luzon Lizard was announced as a new species. It is a tragedy that the Chupacabras fervor kept more people from learning that day about a major discovery like that. Not only was it a big discovery biologically, it was one crypto-zoologically. Hopefully with your book and other’s work and evidence, future carcasses wont be such media black holes sucking in our attention spans.

  55. Joxman responds:

    The Patty film cannot be debunked as a hoax. There has been well over a couple of weeks worth of study by many people to proclaim that it is definitely probably not a suit.


    When I first saw it I knew it was real and not a performance. Squatch does exist, but I still require more substantial proof then photographic film.

    I’m just saying.



  56. CDC responds:


    I can tell by your response that you are not taking the issue seriously, or else you are a teen who doesn’t understand debate that well.

    You claim, “no one has ever made a convincing remake of King Kong”, well of course you are very wrong which further proves my point on the Patterson/Gimlin film.

    In 1933 the original “King Kong” was released. That film was so popular the same year “Son of Kong” was released using the EXACT same models that were used in the original King Kong as well as models used in the film “Creation” in 1931.

    The Apes matched exactly!

    Then in 1949 the movie, “Mighty Joe Young” was released, and once again, different models were used but achieved the exact same results and Mighty Joe Young looked exactly like a smaller version of the original King Kong.

    So you proved my point for me, films can be duplicated if the same models, costumes, or the real animal is used each time.

    The fact that the Patterson/Gimlin film cannot be duplicate goes to the point that the only why to duplicte it is to use the real animal originally filmed.

    It’s not a game with me Loops, it’s logic, science, and research.

    I proved you wrong as you challenged me to, now try and prove me wrong…but better come with more than the last time…cause it still stands as CASE CLOSED for it being a real animal.

  57. loopstheloop responds:

    CDC, mate, I’m sorry but you do seem to be severly lacking in the sense of humour department. You missed my (admittedly facetious) point, which was illustrating the (tiny) flaw in your logic. If nobody has duplicated the film it does not follow that it is impossible to do so. You think otherwise, and say: ‘real animal, I win’. So it’s apparent that you don’t understand irony and you’ve failed to grasp a rather basic point, even though it has been repeatedly explained to you… do you really think you should be the one calling others children or complaining that they’ve misunderstood the argument? Perhaps take a look back and have a think, and get back to us.

    I don’t want to be mean, but when you’re the person making least contribution to the debate, generally missing the tack, and acting rather childishly it’s fairly annoying to start slagging other people off for that exact behaviour.

    @Hapa, interesting read. But can we stay on the P./G. film for the moment? I’m of the opinion that there has been enough of a case made by others to dismiss this footage definitively as a hoax. Would you or anyone else care to comment?

    Nobody has any comment on the polygraph?

    To the enthusiast: do you not think there are enough red lights surrounding Patterson, his character and his behaviour before and after the filming to make you at least suspicious of him?

  58. seawasp responds:

    @Loop: In regards to Patterson himself, sure, there’s red flags. But you can throw all the red flags you want with regards to someone’s character and still have to look at the evidence. The film itself is the evidence, and you could have a sworn STATEMENT by him that he planned to fake it, and you’d still be left with the question of “er, well, HOW?” Statements are easy to make. Character questions are easy to raise. Images on film, not as easy to make.

    Insofar as polygraphs, I have no faith in them at all. They’re fun little party toys but, unfortunately, given far too much weight in both the popular media and — I suspect possibly in a sort of positive feedback loop — in the law enforcement community. They can be fooled under a number of conditions, and they don’t determine truth in any event. At BEST they can tell you that the person PROBABLY believes what they’re saying, or they’re PROBABLY lying, but that’s the *best* you can get out of them. It’s no more reliable than standard eyewitness testimony, and overall less so because it’s not going to give you detailed information in any event.

  59. loopstheloop responds:

    Well, seawasp, I came at the P./G. film as a neutral with an open mind. I’d go further and say that I’d actually love for it to be real, so I’d have been biased in favour of it. However, I still conclude it’s a hoax for several reasons. Even it you approach it as if it could be true… even if you hypothesise that Sasquatch actually do exist… still you’re left with insurmountable signs that suggest, and actually prove, that the film is a fraud at the centre of a web of lies. That’s my standing on it now.

    My point was with Patterson happening to be the luckiest ever fellow to search for Bigfoot and happening to bump into Patty in the woods you’ve got someone who’s not entirely trustworth handing you his ‘evidence’, and you’ve got to trust his account of it. Problem is Patterson simply was not an honest man.

    I’d suggest he had the motive (£$€), and the lack of moral scruples to attempt this perhaps rather cruel hoax. Did he have the means? Was it easy to do? Well, I do not think it was easy… he needed a thoroughly convincing suit, and to work the camera just right. The grainy quality, the lack of certainty about camera settings or shutter speed, and the missing original film certainly made it easier for him.

    As you know, the best quality copy available is 1st. gen… but before people looked into the murk of terrible copies and invented things that were not in the original… from hand-movement to facial expression. That was luck.

    My 2 pennies’ worth:

    I think the walk of the subject fooled experts from various fields, especially combined with the shutter-speed issue. It now has been duplicated successfully. But these people who claimed, like Grover, that Patterson lacked the intelligence to fake various aspects were seeing what wasn’t there in the low-quality images. On the walk, if you told your mate to walk a bit like a gorilla while he was wearing an ape suit and fake feet, would it look very dissimilar to what you have there? He’d exaggeratedly swing his arms and place his feet flatly on the ground to avoid tripping on the extended footware.

    I think it’s a clever hoax for the timing and the amount of information actually stored on the film… i.e. minimal. Then people added what they saw fit. But it’s also a rather lucky hoax in that the lack of information in the film combined with pricked imaginations allowed it to become such a talking-piece, and its ambiguity in various aspects allowed people to make hypothetical cases for the evolution of the creature pictured in the footage.

    I also think if I were responsible for the hoax, and had made significant money from it on the back of other people’s good will, I’d have trouble sleeping, and would not be awaiting Judgement Day with any great eagerness.

  60. Hapa responds:


    I’ve heard people who have said there are a lot of red flags with Patterson (his talks with Ray Wallace before the film was shot, etc), but unless real proof is rendered as to the film being faked I can’t see how he could have pulled it off. There are several factors involved, such as the size of the individual (6’6 to 7’4, depending on who you read,), the body conformations not matching those of Bob Heironomous (as exposd by Meldrum in his book), The footprints left behind going up and around a nearby elevated area for about half a mile or so, the weight of the individual based on the depth of the prints and footage examination (700 lbs, way toomuch for little old Mr. Heironomous to carry), the line down the back of the Bigfoot (Gorillas have such a line, and one photo of a Zoo Bear has such a line down its belly), the herniated bulge on one of the legs, the analysis which showed the face of the creature was far more apelike (even Gorilla-like) than originally thought with a normal glance of the film, analysis which shows the limbs are close to the same length, and the fact that Patterson never really kept a heck of a lot of money afterwards (spent a lot of it going after the beast), not to mention that several people have said they had made the beast suit and yet never produced proper proof (Philip Morris, members of the Wallace Family) or recanted later (The Chambers affair). The Fact that Bob Heironomous passed a lie detector means nothing (Ted Bundy passed too and he was guilty as a cat in a goldfish bowl. Unlike Captain Stern, he had no angle, no hand over fist to testify for him (Heavy metal linkage here), and the evidence from the photo and the place where it was taken further nullify the Heironomous affair.

    Here is a website that deals the death blow to that particular fiasco:

    Was the Heironomous lie detector thingy what you were talking about, or did Patterson take a lie detector too?

  61. Hapa responds:


    Here is that Photo of a bear with a line down its front…to Nickell, it could be a zipper!!!

    Here’s a gorilla with that line down his back. Must also be a zipper…

    The link i provided earlier also shows a photo of a Gorilla with a line down its back, just like Patty in the film.

  62. CDC responds:


    You seem to see your point, but it makes no sense whatsoever.

    Follow logic “MATE” and maybe you will learn something…cause I understand you completely, and you point is not valid.


    1. The Patterson/Gimlin film is either of a real animal or a hoax…nothing else it can be, agreed?

    2. If a hoax, then it has to be a man in a costume…nothing else it can be, agreed?

    3. If it is a man in a costume, that means the costume was made on or before 1967…only possible way to use a costume in that film, agreed?

    4. If it were a man in a costume, Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin had to know it was a man in a costume, because both men were carrying guns, and anyone wearing a costume in the woods would be at risk of being shot at if he did not identify himself as being a man in a costume…only logical, agreed?

    5. If it were indeed a hoax and Roger Patterson was behind the hoax, Roger Patterson did not have a huge amount money to invest in a costume, therefore the costume must have been made within a reasonable budget…could not afford more, agreed?

    6. Roger Patterson was not a professional film maker, did not attend film school, and his equipment and camera was of average quality for that time…this film was not professionally made, agreed?

    7. If the film was a hoax, not done by a professional film maker, using an inexpensive costume, using a simple camera, with a man in the costume, THEN WHY HAS IT NOT BEEN ABLE TO BE DUPLICATED IN 44 YEARS???????????

    8. If it’s a real animal…then nothing further to say.

    Here is the ONLY point “MATE”, you claim ” If nobody has duplicated the film it does not follow that it is impossible to do so”. Well “MATE”, that could be exactly what it means. Think a second about the sentence YOU wrote, “nobody has duplicated”? You don’t see the logic there, that if it could be duplicated, it would have been by now? How can the point be any clearer? What is it you are failing to grasp, see, or admit?

    The blah, blah, blah, back and forth you and others go on about means absolutely NOTHING! It is all about the film…NOTHING ELSE!

    The film is either a man in a costume or a real animal, THOSE ARE THE ONLY TWO OPTIONS!!!!! If it is a man in a costume made on or before 1967, then the film should be able to be duplicated and that is “LOGIC” MATE!

    I have a great sense of humor, just honestly you ain’t all that funny.

    As far as the “least contribution”, LOL that was the funniest thing you said. The pointles babblings you go on about, this and that, contribute nothing…and you know it.

    It’s not about polygraph tests, sacred films, non believers vs believer, Coke vs Pepsi, none of that nonsense…IT’S ABOUT THE FILM!

    The thread is about “Bigfoot is a man in a suit”, “Nickell’s old argument”

    I have made solid scientific points on why I do not believe it is a man in a suit. If you wish to challenge any of my points then please do so.

    This Dr Phil,l Oprah, nonsense you have been posting goes away from the topic and the point that is so very simple.

    If it were only a man in a suit…it should have been duplicated in 44 years…IT HAS NOT!!!! CASE CLOSED…MATE :)

  63. loopstheloop responds:

    @CDC, Sorry pal… I’m afraid I’ve been a little too polite so far (something you probably wouldn’t be accused of being often). For that reason I’ve skirted around the fact that you’re perhaps slightly dim. I don’t mean that as an insult, but you don’t understand irony or logic, so I won’t waste my time explaining either to you or reading any more of your nonsense. I am not here to argue with eejits. I would say that you being the loudest proponent of the pro-authenticity case perhaps doesn’t help that side of the debate too much.

    @Hapa, Thanks for your posts… found them interesting. I’m glad you mentioned the footprints. You can ignore the red flags around Patterson’s character, though I do think they should raise your suspicion levels., however the P./G. case is unique in that you have not just random footprint casts, but rather a film of the subject making them, and in terrain that’s recognised.

    Then on top of that you have statements and film of casts being made, and information passed on by Gimlin and Patterson themselves. And that’s where the whole thing falls apart.

    I wonder if you’ve read this article. If not, give it a look, and let me know your thoughts at your leisure 😉 It’s nothing new… 2008, but I really think Mr. Dennett nailed it here.

    On polygraphs, well, they say they’re 97% accurate. If a psychopath can beat one it’s usually because he can convince himself he’s telling the truth, as per your example.

    I wasn’t aware that Mr. Hieronimus had taken and passed one. Do you know anything of the supposed one that Patterson took? Is there documentation for that? For Hieronimus’s one? Did Gimlin never take one?

    Sure, it’s not perfect, but most people who have something to hide will refuse a test on that topic they are being untruthful about. That’s supposition, but it needs consideration.


    Whoops, apologies to Bob Heironomous, whose name I repeatedly misspelled.

    @hapa The recent biography of Patterson suggested that when he tried to sell the footage stills plus interview rights to a certain U.S. wildlife publication, the deal was before they’d pay a cent he’d do a polygraph and pass. The biographer claimed he did so. I wondered if anyone knew his source on that.

    re: Meldrum’s body ratio… the simple answer to that is if the subject in the suit were wearing, say, something so commonplace and readily accessible in your country as American football padding, then the human shoulder would of course be far lower than the supposed animal’s shoulders appeared. Actually, the sums done on that suggest that would fall perfectly into the human average ratio. Meldrum did not mention that as a possibility in his book.

    Also, the armour would make the head seem lower on the body, and demand the classic Patty full-torso turn.

    Simple and highly, highly plausible.

  64. DWA responds:

    Listen. Nickel.

    (what typo?)

    “Finally, analysis reveals that the creature in the image looks like a man in a fake fur suit in many ways.”

    Right. It’s bipedal. And that looks like fur. He doesn’t have any other ways. Not that would last a second in a serious conversation, anyway.

    “There’s an odd double-standard in that people subject the hoax claims to a high degree of skepticism without being as skeptical of some of the outlandish theories about the creature,” Nickell said.

    No. Here’s the odd thing. NOT ONE PIECE OF EVIDENCE POINTS TO A FAKE, and he thinks it’s “odd” that people have trouble with that thesis. THAT is odd. Any thesis, Nickel, that is not backed by evidence should always be subjected to a high degree of skepticism.

    One can dismiss ‘outlandish’ theories and still think that the evidence points to the subject being real. A number of folks with very solid credentials have done exactly that.


    (what typo?)

  65. DWA responds:


    “But over the years, he just started to stretch and fanatically insist his ideas were soild (even though you could prove they weren’t). Mr. Nickell has become a religious skeptic in the same way there are religious believers. He doesn’t think critically at all. He’s not looking for facts, he’s out to prove his theory is right, and he does this by attempting to destroy the credibility of the witness and the sense of wonder the audience has for the cryptid in question. He religiously pushes his theories because his ego is caught up in being a skeptic, even if he knows he is wrong. And the worse part is, he never looks at the mistakes he’s making and follows them up with improvements or new information. He just ignores the facts that are making his theory invalid.”

    Good job. Couldn’t come up with a better capsule description of this variety of “skeptic.”

  66. DWA responds:


    “[Nickell?] is correct that the popular consciousness formed an idea about what Sasquatch was supposed to look like due to exposure to the P./G. film. From the skeptic’s side, if that film were indeed to turn out to have been faked it explains rather neatly why people would be thinking they’re seeing similar creatures all over North America. Once the concept became televisualised it became homogenised. So before when people heard stories or read about Sasquatch and formed their own images, after 1967 they were shown a picture of what the creature were supposed to look like, and that has its own effect.”

    I always look for tipoffs that someone hasn’t taken a good look at the sasquatch evidence. One of the clearest dead giveaways is the “Popular Consciousness” dodge.

    If you’ve read a lot of encounter reports – and I have read as many, I’ll wager, as anyone here, if not more – you know that the vast majority of them describe, from scratch, what the witness saw. Many sighters had never seen the P/G film before having their sightings. Here are the standard reactions of sighters who compare to the film:

    1. That aligns pretty closely with what I saw. (With further details given.)
    2. That’s not what I saw. (The sighter then goes on to describe what could easily be another individual, of the same or similar species.)
    3. That’s not what I saw; it was fatter/thinner/bulkier/ leaner/etc. (In other words – and the witness generally thinks this is true – it was another individual, of the same or similar species.)

    Most sighters, however, never refer to the film at all. And most have never seen it. (Those who have tend to overrate its ubiquity. I didn’t see it until like eight years ago; and I first heard about P/G the spring after Patterson shot it.)

    It should also be noted that the animal people are seeing is decidedly different from the “popular consciousness” of a lumbering, knuckle-dragging vegetarian. But one would have to immerse oneself in the data to see this.

  67. DWA responds:

    seawasp: nice posts.

    ANY entry in a scientific debate MUST be backed by evidence.

    No skeptic has produced ONE piece of credible evidence that the P/G film was faked. Scientists with impressive credentials in 100% relevant fields have produced much evidence that the film depicts an unclassified species.

    And still – going on 44 years after the film was shot – the skeptics absolutely fail to confront the scientific proponents on their own ground.

    If you are a logical, rational person in reasonable command of the evidence, and you are asked which way to bet, given the evidence on hand, you would have only one rational bet open to you.


  68. CDC responds:

    @ Loops

    LOL okay MATE, we all can see you have no answer, so once again you babble on about “irony’, and then have the sack to accuse me of being “Dim”. Well Mate, instead of accusing me of being “Dim”, why don’t you answer my question and prove that I am “Dim”? What? You can’t?

    What’s that you say? You have no answer to my question? You are affraid of losing the debate if you answer? You are affraid it will make you look bad? Don’t worry Mate, no one will pass judgement on you here, don’t be a coward, just answer the one question:


    If you can give a legitimate answer to that one little question, then a lot of believers would love to hear it so they could move on with their lives. Waiting……

    If you represent the skeptic side…well my friend, I have never seen a skeptic so affraid to answer a question. In school, that would demonstrate a lack of knowledge on the subject…or a lack of confidence in the limited knowledge you do possess.

    Hear in the USA we have a saying…”put up, or shut up”. That is meant to let a person know all his talk means nothing and we want substance or we don’t want to hear anymore.

    Blah blah blah all you want…but you and I both know that of all the posters here, I am the one you lost to, because YOU COULD NOT ANSWER!

    See you on the next thread MATE LOL LOL LOL LOL CHEERS LOL LOL LOL

  69. loopstheloop responds:

    @CDC, sorry, as I mentioned, I don’t read your posts for the glaringly obvious reasons (not too bright, to say the least, and moronic attempts at insults). Please don’t waste any more bandwidth writing to me.

    @DWA… 1) who said the popular ideal was a vegetarian?

    2) You think ‘popular consciousness’ is a common dodge? I just wrote what came to mind, I didn’t get that from anywhere else.

    3) For P./G. to have had an effect on the idea an individual has of the sasquatch, it is, of course, contrary to what you seem to think, not necessary for that person to have actually seen the film themselves.

    Anyway, I don’t doubt the reams of material you’ve read on this topic, so that would make you an expert, no?

    Would you care to ventrue an opinion on the massive problems with the footage discussed above? Or perhaps a counter-argument to Dennett’s article explaining the mathematical impossibility of Patty’s footprints?

    You seem to have glossed over all of that rather swiftly.


  70. Redrose999 responds:

    Thank you DWA, I think the big problem here is debunking is a paid field. It uses science, but it’s not done with the spirit of discovery that our forefathers had, when they were forging the scientific fields. The very fact that they are paid to prove a negative colors the field makes it impossible for them to look at things neutrally. It’s easy to prove a negative in science. It’s very difficult to challenge a negative. Look at dinosaur paleontology, why do you think there are so many theories and arguments? The entire field is focused on proving ideas in a field of negatives.

    I could go out in the woods for a week and do basic observations, find tracks, but not see a single fox. Does that mean they are not there? Well I’ve proven a negative. Now granted fox numbers are large in our area so everyone knows they are there, so it would be silly to say they didn’t exist.

    The point I’m trying to make is way back when, if we were always debunking rather than discovering, Darwin would have never come up with his theory of evolution. Nothing would get done. Fringe science fields are necessary for discovery. You need people in science, the scant few they are, to look into these things rather than debunk them. But it is the debunkers job to stop this with a negative.

    Debunking is a business, the very fact these people get paid to do it makes it necessary for them to “Debunk” and be religiously skeptical. IF they weren’t they wouldn’t be doing their job. If they are proven wrong, well then, they might damage their reputations. On that note I want to add, its necessary debunkers keep us as a society rational in general, but these are not the people making the real discoveries. It’s the people who neither believe or disbelieve these subjects. It’s the people who go against the acceptable norm of society and risk their reputations that make discoveries. Again, I will use paleontology, it was more acceptable to believe fossil bones were biblical monsters or the remains of already living creatures that died. This was the accepted norm. For years early paleontologist had to fight this without getting black-balled. It’s the same way for people like Jeff Meldrum and Grover Krantz in his day.

    You do need a balance of people. Believers and skeptics are necessary for progress in general. Skeptics keep us frosty and suspicious, and searching for rational and existing scientific explanations. Believers help keep the story/myth alive with their sense of wonder and undying faith. Between the two, the folks in the middle, are driven by both sides. It works, and science is done and discoveries are made. It’s all very exciting to watch. Which is why a middle-chick like myself likes to watch cryptozoology. Because, despite the egos and explosive personalities, and the skeptic/believer wars, this is where new zoological discoveries are made.

  71. Hapa responds:

    Hello Loopstheloop

    “Who said the popular ideal was a vegetarian?”

    That’s an old belief, due to the fact that Gorillas, Orangutans, vegans, most other primates (LOL) are vegetarians (though don’t quote me on the “other primates” thingy though: I don’t know absolutely sure most are vegetarians). This belief was probably reinforced by the 60’s counter culture that pushed things to the extreme (free love, long hair, un-shaved faces (anathema to people in the south at the very least, if not most of the country), and being vegetarian), and of course the Harry and the Henderson’s film (portraying a loveable Sasquatch that ate only fish as a meat, mostly a herbivore).

    Analysis done on Giganto teeth recently showed it was, like chimpanzees, an omnivore. If indeed Bigfoot is Gigantopithecus, it is more bear than gorilla in its cuisine.

    Now as for this Dennett and his mathematical argument: I take just about anything from the skeptical enquirer/CSICOP/pseudo skeptic elite with a grain of salt. A whole lot of controversy surrounds their methods(so-called). Indeed, one of the co founders of CSICOP, Marcello Truzzi, stated that many in the group were fraudulent in their research, “shifting the goal posts” when extraordinary evidence (i.e. a paranormal phenomena passes the test of normal scientific scrutiny) backed up the extraordinary claims.

    Check out the controversy section. Pay special attention to the first paragraph (untitled), the Mars effect section, and the Natasha Demkina fiasco. Also check the marked sources:
    other links criticizing CSIcop are listed on the last site. Two of them are either poorly linked or the sites changed over time, but the following one gives a lot of info:

  72. DWA responds:


    1) who said the popular ideal was a vegetarian?

    Ask a sample of people on the street what Bigfoot eats and how fast one can run. When you tell them what many eyewitnesses – who aren’t comparing notes – are reporting, they’ll laugh. But nothing reported is outside the capabilities one would expect from a wild animal. This is one of the many benefits of reading the encounter literature.

    2) You think ‘popular consciousness’ is a common dodge? I just wrote what came to mind, I didn’t get that from anywhere else.

    I’ve heard it many times; it’s theorized that Roe and Patterson got the ideas for their sketches that way, and I have heard every skeptic refer to it. In fact, it’s part of the backbone of the skeptical ‘case’: Bigfoot As Man-Ape Archetype/Myth.

    3) For P./G. to have had an effect on the idea an individual has of the sasquatch, it is, of course, contrary to what you seem to think, not necessary for that person to have actually seen the film themselves.

    People aren’t describing an idea; they’re describing the thing they saw, in the detail available. They’re starting from scratch. (I mean, I have read HUNDREDS of them.; Start there. That’s plenty, actually.) But I’d be interested in what you mean by what you’re saying. Even though I didn’t actually watch the film until like 2005 or so, I’d seen stills from it many times. So I had a good idea what it would look like. I’m not sure how that would work if you’ve seen nothing – as many eyewitnesses never had before they saw their squatch. (Many reports on the two above databases precede Bigfoot-consciousness in the media by decades.)

    4) Anyway, I don’t doubt the reams of material you’ve read on this topic, so that would make you an expert, no?

    No. I don’t like the word “expert.” But I have read more than enough to tell you that every skeptic I’ve heard on this topic – including the skeptical scientists – makes like four errors in the first 30 seconds when they say what they think. The non-scientists make their mistakes because they are flat ignorant of the essential disciplines; scientists make theirs because they act the part of incredulous laymen – not skeptical scientists. They make errors I find absolutely unaccountable for a scientist, errors they would never make studying the things they normally do. Incredulous people have a habit of not sitting still to review evidence rationally.

    5) Would you care to ventrue an opinion on the massive problems with the footage discussed above?

    There are no “massive problems” with it. Not one piece of evidence points to this being fake. Patterson’s character is not in question here; he very clearly lacked the means to pull this off. The only issue is what is on the film. To assume that Patterson had the means because he might possibly have had the motive is to make a quadriplegic in London the prime suspect when he says he wants to kill John Cena, personally, by manual strangulation, and a day later we find John manually strangled on the summit of Mount Everest. Think Wheelchair Guy did it? That’s Patterson with this film. HE DIDN’T. To say he was hoaxed by someone else is to add several additional layers of complexity. On all counts, Occam smacks you down immediately. The simplest explanation is that Patterson filmed what he says he did, whether one likes that or not. That is the explanation Occam backs; skeptics don’t understand enough to understand that.

    Another thing skeptics don’t understand: over all the years that Patterson and after him Gimlin have been talking about this, the story checks out completely. Gimlin can recite it in his sleep; I listened to him do it yet again one morning while we walked around the zoo in Tyler, TX. If you’ve met Gimlin, you would consider him playing a part in a hoax about the most absurd thing you could imagine. (And: “um-hum….HE’S JUST THE KIND OF GUY THAT WOULD DO THIS!!!! is, well, conspiracy-theorist. No he isn’t. For a long time he just wished he’d never seen Patty for all the negative attention it got him. He now has not only made his peace with it but can fully appreciate the privilege he had.)

    There is no evidence that the means existed, on any level, by anyone, to do this in the 1960s. Read Bill Munns’s analysis of what would be required (Google him). To actually start to think out what would have been required is to come almost immediately on an account so absurd that one might as well assume that the Russians faked America’s moon landings. No. THAT absurd, really.

    6) Or perhaps a counter-argument to Dennett’s article explaining the mathematical impossibility of Patty’s footprints?

    Dennett’s arguments aren’t arguments. There is nothing mathematically impossible about Patty’s footprints; they are just the same as many other trackways found, continent-wide. (The same individual apparently made another trackway found not too far away.) Dennett took a couple of frustrated overstatements by Grover Krantz and “disproved” them. As I like to say: one cannot blame the sasquatch’s non-existence on the people looking for him. Dennett’s review of Meldrum’s book isn’t a review of the book at all; a number of us took it apart quite nicely on another blog you can find here.

    7) You seem to have glossed over all of that rather swiftly.

    I didn’t gloss over it. I’ve read enough to know that all of that is, in fact, itself glossing over too swiftly. That is what I consider the entire skeptical take on this: glossing over through ignorance, incredulity, or unwillingness to do the homework. (Or all three.)

    Cheers indeed. I’d be interested in hearing more from you.

  73. Redrose999 responds:

    I want to add, the link I posted is to an article in Scientific American about Jeff Meldrums work and how it is viewed. It is very interesting actually.

    It’s not sciences place to believe or disbelieve, it’s sciences place to explore and look at the facts. And I find with Cryptids, it often crosses lines with belief and not belief, which is why Cryptozoology is shunned in many circles. You have few scientists working in it (Paleontology was historically started as a gentlmen hobby and an amateur”s field, not so different here, no real scientist would touch it until it got moving and it was still and is a speculative field) and amateurs dominating it.

  74. CDC responds:

    It really isnt about you, I just want everyone to see how weak the skeptic argument was and used you to prove my point…thanks MATE, you did your job

    Doesnt matter what you read as long as everyone else reads it LOL, who cares what you read LOL

  75. DWA responds:

    Redrose999: nice article. I’ve read it.

    It talks about bad science, and sort of not-implies that Meldrum may be doing some. But it ignores the good science he’s doing, other than an offhand comment or two. And it shows the skeptical scientists to be doing bad science of their own. Samples:

    “To Meldrum’s critics—including university colleagues and scientists in his own field—that same collection does not constitute valid evidence, and Meldrum’s examination of it is pseudoscientific: belief shrouded in the language of scientific rigor and analysis. “Even if you have a million pieces of evidence, if all the evidence is inconclusive, you can’t count it all up to make something conclusive,” says David J. Daegling, an anthropologist at the University of Florida who has critiqued Meldrum and the Bigfoot quest in the Skeptical Inquirer and is the author of Bigfoot Exposed (AltaMira, 2004)”

    OK, this is inexcusable. Daegling, of all people, should understand that evidence and proof are two different things. So what does he say? He says, basically, that we don’t have proof. WHICH IS WHAT MELDRUM IS SAYING! (Which is why we’re all here!) This is what I mean when I say that scientists, when they are looking at topics like this, make utterly incomprehensible mistakes. Does Daegling not know the difference between evidence and proof? Is he actually saying that with “a million pieces” of evidence, you stop looking, and pronounce it all fake? Does Daegling not know how to read simple English?

    “He [Meldrum] brings out a particularly controversial piece called the Skookum cast that he thinks may be of a reclining Sasquatch and others think may be of a reclining elk. “There is a chance we are wrong,” he says. “But with the footprints, I feel more certain.” Discounting the unusual casts “isn’t scientific in the least,” Meldrum maintains, and “it is irresponsible.” ”

    Boy, I’ll say, Jeff! That the Skookum cast is of a reclining elk is an utterly foolish notion, blown to smithereens by anyone who has seen a reclining elk, well, stand up. THERE WOULD BE ELK PRINTS IN THE CENTER OF THE CAST were this an elk; there are none. What did it do, levitate? Never mind that Dr. Daris Swindler, one of the most prominent anthropologists of our time (Google him), became convinced of the reality of sasquatch on the strength of the Skookum cast ALONE.

    And Daegling again:

    “In his famous “Cargo Cult Science” lect¬ure in 1974, Richard Feynman described scientific thinking and integrity as “a kind of utter honesty—a kind of leaning over backwards” to raise and examine every doubt, every interpretation. This kind of thinking, critics say, is missing from Meldrum’s Bigfoot work, whereas it infuses his fossil and primate gait research. Meldrum’s principal critic from his own field is Daegling, who concludes that the “evidence doesn’t look better on deeper analysis, it looks worse.” He adds that “this isn’t about Bigfoot—it is about how scientists go about doing their work and how we should be self-reflective and self-critical.”

    First of all, anyone who has read Meldrum’s fossil and primate gait research – and his Sasquatch book, and yes I’ve done both – knows that that kind of thinking thoroughly infuses his Bigfoot research, and is in fact the sole reason he thinks the topic worth pursuing. Look around this site for where a few of us skewer Daegling’s “review” of Meldrum’s book, which is more a bad-borderline-blatant case of professional jealousy than it is a thoughtful review.

    And then there’s this guy.

    “Matt Cartmill of Duke University concludes that if the chances of Bigfoot’s being real are one in 10,000 (his admittedly wild guess), then having one physical anthropologist on the case seems a reasonable allocation of professional resources and that Meldrum does not deserve scorn or abuse. But Cartmill, who notes that he is “mortally certain” there is no Sasquatch, is irked by Meldrum’s trying to guilt-trip those who do not do Bigfoot work and his disparaging them as lazy or aloof.”

    This statement can be accepted, on its face, as Cartmill’s own admission that Meldrum’s “guilt-tripping” is, at least when it comes to Cartmill, fully on target. “Mortally certain?” No scientist could possibly make such a claim were he appealing to his science. Here’s a bet – OK, let’s go $500 – that were I to read Cartmill’s justification of his “mortal” certainty, I would rip it to shreds in one post.

    And I’m not a scientist.

    For shame.

    (But then again, Redrose, SciAm is firmly in the professional-debunker camp on this topic. So what would one expect.)

  76. Redrose999 responds:


    Sadly as long as humanbeings exist, one of the driving forces in any field will be professional jealousy. I posted the link so people could see how hard it is for people like Meldrum to do any kind of out of the norm work without criticism or some kind of scientific alienation. I have a great respect for Jeff and his work.

    Scientific American is a professional journal, I wish I could find the link, but Jeff has a official description of Sasquatch in it. The article has a great many criticisms attached to it, but people have to realize that criticism is a part of science. You should see Paleontology! Every thing new is criticized, it can be disheartening.

    But I give Jeff a lot of credit in publishing there. Its the only way scientist like him will gain ANY respect in the end.

  77. DWA responds:


    Did you mean this article?

    That’s one flawed analysis.

    Gimlin is correct when he says:

    “We knew it had to be heavier than it appeared to be when we first saw it. Of course, we thought the horse’s weight was distributed on four feet, and I’m not good with the mathematics of such things, but . . . if you figure 1,400 pounds [for horse and rider] distributed on four feet would be about 350 to 400 pounds, so we figured it must have weighed much more than we originally figured.”

    The article makes an immediate leap to:

    “The fact that something is seriously wrong with Gimlin’s account should have been obvious to Bigfoot researchers. A horse is a big creature, and because its feet are relatively small in comparison to its weight, a horse makes deeper and more visible tracks than almost any other animal.”

    Anybody who has (1) seen a lot of tracks, as I have and (2) been outside a lot, as I have, knows that that statement is at the very least open to question. Deeper and “more visible” (???) than almost any other animal? What did they test? Where is their research? Did they, um, test against a sasquatch? We know the answer to that one, right? Given assessments of sasquatch weight made by researchers on the basis of print analysis, there’s nothing outlandish about what was seen at the Patterson site at all, and certainly nothing close to anything “seriously wrong with Gimlin’s account.”

    You know what’s seriously wrong?

    The absence of any effort on the part of the skeptics to tell us how Patterson and Gimlin put tracks all over the place, so many that Laverty had trouble believing it – in a moment we’ll get to that one – deeper than those of a horse! Did they weigh a ton or so apiece? (Dotsa lotsa pizza!) Were they both pogoing over the same phony track together?

    Laverty’s skepticism can be easily addressed by anybody who spends time outside and understands animals: a critter making temporary residency in an area is going to leave tracks that, duh!!, weren’t there before it passed through. Laverty missed them because the critter wasn’t in the vicinity when he was. See? Easy.

  78. DWA responds:

    With regard to this comment I made above:


    [loopstheloop] 6) Or perhaps a counter-argument to Dennett’s article explaining the mathematical impossibility of Patty’s footprints?


    Dennett took a couple of frustrated overstatements by Grover Krantz and “disproved” them. As I like to say: one cannot blame the sasquatch’s non-existence on the people looking for him.



    I meant Daegling. It’s easy to get these guys confused with one another.

    The overstatements I refer to are

    1) Krantz’s statement that the Pattywalk can’t be duplicated by a human. Well of course it can, Grover! I mean, for a few steps, which is all Daegling tested for. Plus those guys made no effort to duplicate what a human would have to have done at the Pattysite, suit and all. But still. Humans are great mimics. I’d like to see one mimic Patty all day, though. I can, Grover, state with utter confidence that of all the humans I have ever seen, NONE walk like Patty.

    2) Krantz’s statement that “no man of any stature is built that broadly.” Daegling took that statement and liberally interpreted it to mean that if he could find ONE guy who was that “broad” on ONE dimension, bingo! Discredited! Which is, of course, a crock. What makes Patty nonhuman is being outside the normal human range on practically EVERY measurement taken of the figure. Anybody who knows statistics knows this: for each non-normal dimension you add to the list, the probability of finding a freak that is outside normal on the whole list goes WAY down.

    Maybe (doubtful) there was one person in the world who could have just put on that costume and gone for a walk.

    (Bulletin. Hieronymous wasn’t him.)

    I did mean what I said about Dennett’s review of Meldrum’s book (and Daegling’s, both of which I critiqued on this site).

  79. scotteb responds:

    Wow, here we go. To start with I am a newer member. My whole believe system on Bigfoot, is based 100% on this film. I have seen it 100’s of times, frame by frame.

    Now, I will try to help out Loop against CDC-DWA. Being a newer member, I am not sure of the rules, but I think CDC is out of line by “name calling”. Anyways…

    I am more on the skeptic side for many reasons. I am tired of the agument of “why has no one reproduced the film”, blah blah. I have a film on Youtude of my guppy swimming around for 1 minute, why don’t you reproduce that? I’d bet you a million dollars you could not with all the money in the world using cgi produce the exact same film, it is a pointless view. Even if somehow you nailed it, it proves nothing. If my grandma told me she farted in the tub, I have two choices. She either did or did not. Is there proof? If there is a camera even showing it, how do I know something was not under her rear forcing air out? Did she lie?

    My point is there is no point in name calling or either side to be wrong or right in this forum, after all, we do want one side to win so we know the answer, right?

    I can counter so many points, just to get countered back, not worth my time, really. Just bringing up points. DWA talks about all these “facts”. I’m sorry but you can’t have a fact on something that is not known to exist. This is like being an expert on Bigfoot or my grandmothers fart, we don’t know if either existed or happened? I say yes, every witness either lied or was mistaken, every track faked or natural, no DNA, no hair samples, no crap to even look at. No bones, no body, nothing. Up to you to prove it, not me or Loops. You can’t prove what does not exist.

    To end this conclussion, like I said, I only believe this creature can exist because of this film. I’m 42 now, was about 1980 when I saw it roughly. It was “In search of”, I think? I’m sorry, but after 31 years of thinking it was possible and Biscardi and others, think it is time to hang it up :) You see, on the fence – close to falling off on the absolute skeptic side – needs a believer to show me the proof, not me showing you it’s not there…

  80. CDC responds:


    Exactly what name did I call Loop? Was it “Mate”?

    Coward is not a name, it is the behavior I believe most skeptics use when confronted with the simple question, “why hasn’t the P/G film been duplicated in 44 years if it was a simple hoax in 1967”?

    Legit question…and frankly, you did the exact same thing with your response Scott…use stupid examples instead of addressing the question.

    Whinning that this has been gone over before, oh really? When? By whom? When was that question answered by anyone? What was that answer? Where is that link? Name one person of science that has given a legitmate reason why a simple hoax in 1967 has not been duplicated in 44 years? Can you do that? Well? Go ahead, if you can’t answer yourself, then find anyone who can answer for you.

    Skeptics can’t have it all their way…ask then avoid, that’s not science.

    So go on and defend anyone you choose…but wouldn’t it be better to shut my pie hole and answer my question with rock solid science?

    If you can’t, then you prove my point even further…and also prove I never called anyone any names…just pointed out the reality of their behavior.

    There are thousands of folks out there that claim they have seen a Bigfoot type creature…in my opinion, most all of those folks are either mistaken or lying. Not Roger Patterson or Bob Gimlin because they brought back evidence of their claim.

    Use science and debunk their evidence…don’t attack their character, their motives, or their reputations…just use science and show us their evidence is FAKE. Because that is either a MAN IN A SUIT or a REAL ANIMAL on that film… That is FACT!!!

    Go ahead Scott, Loops backed down….maybe you can answer the question for everyone.

    If it was a simple hoax in 1967, why hasn’t the P/G film been duplicated in 44 years?

  81. Hapa responds:


    Hellow again :)

    The article was interesting; I’ve never read the weight distribution argument like that before. On the one hand, putting the quarter horse hooves together and then judging the greater depth of the sasquatch prints is quite interesting. I’ve been racking my brains over it all day (and will for some time.). On the other hand, when Bob Titmus had his 200 lbs brother in law an area of the tracks where one measured 1.25 inches deep, his track was 0.25 inches deep, implying a much larger creature (he guessed it at 600 lbs, though my math is not very good and I might be tempted to think 1,000 from these figures. Perhaps Titmus compensated for the relatively larger foot of the beast. Someone good at math help me if i’m reading this wrong: is .25 inches half of an inch?). That’s pretty heavy either way, but a far cry from 1400-1500lbs that Michael Dennett calculated, perhaps due to the fact that horses, like all quadrapeds, carry their weight on four limbs, distributing it.

    Have you watched the show “Deadliest warrior”? On one of the latest episodes (Hannibal vs Ghengis Khan), they measured the force an elephant makes when it steps down. The 9,000 lbs African elephant stomped with a force of over 2,000 lbs, and when you do the math, all four limbs would total about 9,000. If the elephant walked upright (if it was built this way) and had feet twice as big, the imprint would still be deeper, because of weight distribution. An elephant over half as heavy walking like that, with feet like that, might still make a deeper impression than the 9,000 lbs elephant (4and a half tons is close to realistic, two: Hannibal’s African elephants were the extinct north african elephant, similar to modern African forest elephants (1 to 3 tons).

    There is so many unanswered questions involved in trying to guess the weight of a supposed animal by another that could not be any different (weight distribution of horse limbs compared to the monster thick limb of the beast (quadraped walk versus biped that carries weight on only two limbs, the hardness of the hoof versus the soft flesh of a foot (that is discussed in the article), and why Patterson and Gimlin later thought that the beast was 500 instead of 300 lbs.)

    Furthermore i fail to see how anyone could register a six foot height from the film: Though Green himself has had doubts about the film he took there, he did a comparison between the creature and a Jim McClarin (6’5 tall) and found the beast not only much taller (some put it at 7’4, far above Heironomous) but showed that be beast once stepped up a 30 inch bank without breaking it’s stride. Green thought he had miscalculated the comparison somehow, yet when you look at the background of McClarin and the beast in the comparison photo, its virtually a perfect match. And the greater weight estimates fit the larger height range than the smaller figure. This larger size is also confirmed by another pic taken from the site by investigator Peter Byrne, who had a 6 feet tall man named Michael Hodgson photographed and then had a certified forensic examiner Jeff Glickman superimpose it onto the PG film, showing also that the creature was far more than just six feet high (the 7’4 estimate is partially based on this comparison). Hodgson is also obviously smaller than McClarin when you do a comparison of the two with their critter comparison photos put side by side, which is accurate since McClarin was 5 inches taller than him. So much for Heironomous.

    To be fair, let’s consider the possibility that Patterson faked the trail of prints that went 600 yards through the forest, downhill to the creek, crossed it, walked along the canyon, then turned back into the forest and went uphill at least another 300 yards. He followed the tracks for over a quarter of a mile before losing them. Consider also that one track was slightly smaller than the other, that the stride of the tracks went up to 68-72 inches once beyond the sandbar where the film was shot,implying the creature had run, and that the show MonsterQuest did an episode on Colorado sasquatch sightings where they showed a machine that made deep prints (out of fake hard feet that would have no dynamic interaction with the soil like both flesh and rubber) that relied on two men weighing the machine down with several heavy bags together amounting to several hundred lbs, and considering that not all the tracks recovered from the site were fully identical (as they would be with a set of fake feet), then you can imagine how difficult it would be to pull off such a hoax like this (the time involved, if it were indeed a hoax, in terms of laying those prints, would have been incredible. The fact that the tracks were not fully identical (one pic in Meldrum’s book shows a midtarsal break, while some casts of the critter’s tracks made by Patterson show tracks that were flat. Such different characteristics seem more like animate feet rather than uniform blocks of wood or stone. Skeptics would have to insist that there were several different sets of tracks used to make it look legit, which is highly unlikely). Let’s not forget that the fake feet that show dynamic interaction with the soil, ones using rubber and cheesecloth on the fake wooden feet, did not come about until the 80’s, not the 60’s (Information taken from “Sasquatch” by Ruppert Matthews, pages 62-64, 85-86, and “Sasquatch: Legend meets Science” by Jeff Meldrum, chapter 7 (pay special attention to page 144 to see the different looks of the tracks), chapter 8 (look at pages 155-157, and then page 162, where the pics and facts on the size comparison photos of McClarin and Hogdson are shown) and pages 231-33 (pay attention to the picks of the tracks on page 232, especially two that show midtarsal breaks, and compare to the pics from the film showing the creature showing a midtarsal break in action).

    And as for the football pads on the supposed Heironomous suit: that is taken into account in the comparison on page 75 of Meldrum’s book: if you look at the pic on Heironomous’ right, you’ll notice that the arm, from below the shoulder to the wrist, is indeed compatible with Heironomous. However, the head is almost a head taller (no pun intended) and Heironomous’ head it at the same level as the beast’s trapezius muscles.

    Sorry if i make some typos: Kinda late.

  82. Hapa responds:

    Now as for the Center for scientific inquiry and the skeptical enquirer:

    I would take whatever comes out of the mouths of any of those guys with a grain of salt. Here are a few things about the controversies involved with CSI alone (including things written by former members of the group who came out with the dirty tricks involved in the so-called research they have done:

    You’ll have to go down a ways before you reach the article in question on the above site

    The critiques by one Marcello Truzzi is quite damning: he was the co-founding chairman of CSI (originally CSICOP) and left it due to the pseudoskepticism of many of its members, who were trying to skew evidence in favor of falsifying things thought of as paranormal, in other words fudging the evidence. The fact that most, if not all of these guys use psychology to attack things like cryptids (psychology is at the least a soft science, and i am being generous here. some see it as not science at all) and that some members (living or dead) that made up CSI, such as Daniel Dennett and Richard Dawkins, are noted as rapid, foaming at the mouth EVANGELICAL-FUNDY-ATHEISTS (who due to their campaign against faith would stand to gain from more spiritual areas of the paranormal to be debunked, so that people would have less faith in anything supernatural and more faith in “them”) and that Brad Redford, though doing solid work in his Chupacabras book, seems to be among them (made a board game called “Playing Gods”, where you can have a Jesus icon, Moses icon, little figurines representing both world faiths and satire faiths (flying spaghetti monster), and with Francis Crick being a member as well (anti-Christian at least), then I think we know were we can put most of the “works” coming out of both institutions: in the baloney bin.

  83. Hapa responds:


    BTW: the correct measurement of the elephant step on deadliest warrior was 2045.680 lbs. combined the animal would make over 8,182 lbs of force on the ground when all four feet are considered, a bit shorter than the animal’s total weight. The same thing must go for horses despite the physical differences due to the quadraped stance. For something like humans and Bigfoot, more of the weight would seem to rest on the legs than it would on a quadraped (however we are big time into oversimplifying here: the fact that humans and sasquatch have swinging arms not immediately pressing on the body and therefore on the legs must be taken into consideration).

    It would be cool if someone had a quarter horse, fake bigfoot feet, and an arsenal of heavy bags with the machine in that Monsterquest episode on Colorado Bigfoot, on the soil of Bluff Creek during a time when the weather is as it was on the day of filming, so we could replicate the difference in track depth of the two animals and see how heavy the Patterson creature really was. I wouldn’t take the word of Michael Dennett or any Skeptical Enquirer/CSICOPPER: i’d want to do the experiment myself, or have someone I trust do it.

  84. scotteb responds:


    I think you have many valid points, just like the rest of us. We don’t come on this site to flame or call anyone out, we are simply after the truth. Skeptic or not, I don’t waste time anywhere else but this site, because most people seem rational here, not 13 year olds. I cannot prove/disprove the film at all. I cannot reproduce it, nor can you. I have one primary concern with the film as in the bottom of the feet in a few shots looks like a pad, with no texture. It could be the grainy video from the time or the lighting as well. I would think if this was filmed in the time of the digital age, one side or the other would have a lot more to stand on.

    Now onto the question of why no one has duplicated it. The “walk” aside, I think the first step is getting the “costume” right. TV shows will never spend millions working on it or else they would have by now. I would like to think Spielburg, if given a $40 million dollar budget and the top special effects artist could pull it off given how he made “Saving Private Ryan” look convincing and real, but who knows as that will never happen.

    CDC, I’m not agaisn’t you at all. I think the film is the BEST evidence we have, bar none. I am just concerned nothing else has panned out since then and never been debated like this. I just think if the video can be recreated, then it still really proves nothing on either side, other then it would sway more on the skeptic side, then the believer side. Trust me, I want it to exist, but I fear it does not other then in the minds of man…We just need proof and what is even proof is up for discussion, other then a body. I’ll continue investagating until probably the day I die, but I can’t prove something does not exist and can only hope someone, maybe even me, can find something before then.

  85. CDC responds:


    Thank you for your honest, sincere response.

    The only thing I would reply to you is, no one would need a million dollar budget to duplicate this film if it were actually a hoax…Roger Patterson did it for less than a few grand if it were a hoax.

    I think the argument that it “hasn’t” be duplicated goes more to the point that it “can’t” be duplicated because simply put it was not a man in a costume made in 1967…but it was a real animal…and to duplicate this film you will need a real animal.

    Logical, right?

  86. crowmagnumman responds:

    Sorry to be picky, but Brad Redford? I take it you mean Ben Radford?

    I’ve read the Starbaby article by Dennis Rawlins, as well as much of the rebuttal by Phil Klass (admittedly, I haven’t read the entire thing). I think that the issue is a little more complex than either side would have us believe. I’m a supporter of CSI, but I think that Rawlins may have had reason to be a bit upset, initially, but ended up blowing the situation way out of proportion after he was not re-voted onto the board. (Correct me if I’m wrong. I’m not entirely sure of the details of his departure from CSI, then CSICOP). There were human beings on both sides, and I wouldn’t suggest that CSI was totally without fault in the matter. But I find it hard to trust the majority of the allegations, and I tire of seeing the incident used as some sort of “proof” of CSI’s corruption. Carl Sagan put it best in 1995:

    “Have I ever heard a skeptic wax superior and contemptuous? Certainly. I’ve even sometimes heard, to my retrospective dismay, that unpleasant tone in my own voice. There are human imperfections on both sides of this issue. Even when it’s applied sensitively, scientific skepticism may come across as arrogant, dogmatic, heartless, and dismissive of the feelings and deeply held beliefs of others … CSICOP is imperfect. In certain cases [criticism of CSICOP] is to some degree justified. But from my point of view CSICOP serves an important social function – as a well-known organization to which media can apply when they wish to hear the other side of the story, especially when some amazing claim of pseudoscience is judged newsworthy … CSICOP represents a counterbalance, although not yet nearly a loud enough voice, to the pseudoscience gullibility that seems second nature to so much of the media.”

  87. eastisred responds:

    No CDC, that is not logical at all. Teleological, maybe. The fact that the film HASN’T been “duplicated” in whatever absurdly precise way you demand has absolutely no bearing on whether or not it CAN be duplicated. You’re argument is essentially “A=B because A=B”. That is not evidence of anything.

    I’ll offer up my own logic puzzle. Which is more logical: that a species of megafauna existing undetected on a continent as populous as North America for centuries could end up only being photographed a single time in an era that has seen such a colossal expansion into the animal’s habitat as well as the mass distribution of cameras on cell phones, computers, etc? Or that a man with the time, opportunity, and motivation to do so could create an exceptionally convincing, (and for the time being, unduplicated) fake?

  88. flame821 responds:

    I almost have to laugh reading some of these comments. Do people think science is hashed out in an old English Country Club? Regal, well-spoken old men politely correcting each other?

    It is cantankerous, rude and thankfully, rarely a public spectacle. I have seen R&D fellows literally come to blows over things (also, thankfully, a rarity). And being we are human, EGO plays a large part in this. The first person to get published, get their name out there is the winner.

    I do take exception to the fundy evangelical atheist remark as I’ve seen more harm done by religious fundamentalists (off all stripes) when it comes to public education, science, and health than I have by any non-believer. Yes, atheists do tend to be skeptics, sometime to the extreme, but I don’t see this as a bad thing, I see it as a way to keep people honest. The world is made up of all types of people some will believe anything, some will believe nothing, and then there are the rest of us who fall somewhere in between.

    Interpretation of the evidence is never black or white, there is always lots of wiggle room, particularly when it comes to unknown species. Yes, we have re-created entire species based on a tooth or skull fragment but most scientist will tell you it is a close approximation based on what we know about other, similar, animals. Sometimes we get it right, sometimes we get it close (ie many early dino fossil, bronto necks, etc) It doesn’t cross the line until evidence is ‘created’ to support one side or the other. I’m not talking hoax, I’m talking fraud. Even the hint of which would be enough to get most scientists and researched tossed out on their proverbial bottoms.

  89. Hapa responds:

    Hello CroMagnuman :)

    Sorry about the name mishap: Brad and Ben are for me easy to get mixed up. Yes I meant Ben or Benjamin Radford.

    To be honest, I didn’t think that post got through: I wrote that one and a previous one like it, but I thought there was some mishap because I didn’t see the post afterwards (such posts usually say your post is awaiting confirmation or something like that. Could be just my computer though).

    Now to be fair, some CSI work seems legit, but a large number of the explanations of paranormal phenomena given by the group seems so geared to one outcome it makes one question their objectivity. It’s one thing to say that some Loch Ness sightings were of a circus elephant bathing in the Loch during a time which a traveling circus was in town (The theory i believe was written about by a member of either CSI and or Skeptical Enquirer. Though Elephants don’t like cold water (beng in it alone makes them sick, as well as drinking it. They hold cold water in their trunk to warm it up before they ingest it(War Elephants, by John M. Kistler, page 115. Kistler is both a freelance writer and a certified Mahout or elephant rider), perhaps on a hot day an elephant could enter the Loch, though the hottest temps of the water and summer sightings of Nessie would need to be known and researched respectively before we can conclude the elephant/Nessie possibility) or that the Mokele-Mbembe/African Brontosaurus was also an elephant (I don’t think that’s all there is to that myth, but some sightings by non natives or by natives far away could have been caused by that), But its another thing to say that the supposed Mothman (5-7 feet tall bat winged owl-like monster) was a misidentified Owl (No Owl comes close to that size, and as far as i know none fly, let alone glide, that as fast as the Mothman, clocked at around 100 miles per hour (Now Peregrine Falcon flies over 100 mph, but its small. However, Joe Nickell wrote about Mothman possibly being a common Barn owl, which is itself a small bird (foot and a half high), so I don’t think it is impossible for someone of that group to think that it WAS a Peregrine Falcon escaped from a bird lab. Same speed, though not necessarily in gliding (it flies 118 MPH, gliding speed unknown to me. Maybe others might) or that the Patterson-Gimlin film was a man in a suit that was 6 feet tall when the size of the beast indicates otherwise and that, if it was a hoax, it does not follow the progressive method of hoaxing (being able to hoax a video should be far easier than it was in the past, due to modern movie monster making, more knowledge accumulated, and better technology. For example, huckster-made bigfoot prints were originally blocks of wood or stone: later rubber and cheesecloth were added to wooden feet to make them more lifelike in the 80’s, and I believe recently people have made a device that mimics the Midtarsal break).

    To compare the Patterson-Gimlin film to other bigfoot films (either proven, highly suspect of being a hoax, or unknown) would be like comparing the Hulk movies with the Hulk TV show: Can you imagine a movie as technologically as savvy as the two recent Hulk movies premiering in the late 70’s? Then how can we say 1,000 % even before investigation that it is Bob Heironomous or another man in a suit when the quality alone has not been duplicated, let alone the film itself duplicated (just look at some of the Youtube “Bigfoot films” and compare their cheesiness to the PG film, for example)

    A true Skeptic does not decide apriori that whatever phenomena he is investigating is false: He/she instead takes an agnostic point of view until enough evidence comes his or her way to decide whether the phenomena is legit or not legit (For example, a guy talks about Bigfoot: the true Skeptic just starting to investigate would say, “Maybe, Maybe not: I need to test to make sure either way, not deciding one way or another until all the facts are presented, and presented properly), not by saying “Ha! It’s 2,000 % to be likely UNTRUE and therefore how can i prove THAT!

    With an organization that says they have investigated who knows how many unsusal and or paranormal events and have concluded that such phenomena (save for maybe, if maybe, a few exceptions) are either bunk or not proven bunk YET (Joe Nickell says he’s been in more “Haunted Houses” than Casper and explained away everything there) makes me wonder about issues of integrity, just Like I would about an organization that says they’ve investigated it all and deem it all either Paranormal or not proven paranormal yet.

  90. CDC responds:


    Absurd? Simple question is absurd to you? Instead of answering the question, you attack the questioner. Typical of a hapless skeptic with no answer.

    Look pal, your twisted scenerio isn’t the only one…got that!

    The last of a surviving remnant population of bipedal primate that some how managed to survive tens of thousands of years…only seen and documented by native American tribes…was accidentically caught on film by two comboys.

    Seems more logical than 1000’s of film makers, hoaxers, and youtubers never coming close.

    Eat that for a sec than get back to me. Your Mega fauna blah blah blah?

    Just answer how no one has come CLOSE to duplicating that film then you have a point…until then, you are just another hapless skeptic with no answer to a simple question.

    Hoax? Yeah, real hoax.

    Answer my puzzel before you ask another…I had the sack to address yours.

  91. Hapa responds:

    Flame821: Hellow :)

    I did not mean to offend: I’m just saying that the men behind the organization should be considered before accepting their work seriously. Yes we don’t want to make a logical fallacy (you can’t believe what they say: they secretly do Disco at the Roxy!!), but on the other hand we have to consider the source as well (Alterior motives, history of sloppy work, effectiveness of criticism, soft or hard science approach to paranormal reasearch, always one-sided conclusion to numerous works or not, pro or anti religious motives, etc), and considering how some like Dawkins act (Dr. Kenneth Miller, incidentally a Roman Catholic and a member of CSI) calls him a “Evangelical Atheist” (though considering his nickname “Darwin’s ROTTWEILER and some of the anti-religious venom he spews, i think “Rabid” is appropriate. Nowhere near a bad as say Osama Bin Laden or the KKK, but every kind of human excrement stinks, is nasty.)

    The creation/evolution and religion/atheist arguments are legion on the net and are far more ferocious than anything on Cryptomundo (thankfully), so I won’t get into that.

  92. DWA responds:


    Anyone acquainted with the encounter literature would say that the sasquatch is not exactly “undetected.” So your ‘logical puzzle’ is fatally flawed on its face. And where’s your proof that it’s only been photographed once? Hint: there are numerous documented possible films and photos, none of them meaning much until a specimen is brought forward.

    Lots of people are seeing them; the problem is that no one – no one who has been able to make the critical difference to the search, anyway – believes anyone who says they saw one.

    That the P/G film is unduplicated after 44 years is a far more telling thing than anything the skeptics can muster. They shoot themselves in the foot by saying it would have been easy to do (it would have to have been for Patterson to do it). There is – just look at this site! – copius motivation for someone to duplicate it, just to show it could be done.

    That it hasn’t been is a very telling piece of evidence – albeit not proof – that it cannot be.

  93. DWA responds:

    “DWA talks about all these “facts”….”

    I talk about two:

    1) Well-qualified scientists think that P/G is genuine, or that the evidence pointing to its reality out-musters that pointing to a fake.

    2) They think the latter thought quite logically, because, well, NO ONE, lettered or not, has produced ONE piece of evidence pointing to a fake.

    No one has done 2) here, because no one can.

    If you have not proven a case in 44 years, the logical world begins to wonder – correctly – whether you have a case at all.

    (And yes, it IS on the skeptics to prove P/G a fake. That is their thesis. The proponents have done their job. They have laid compelling evidence at the feet of science. Science must act upon that evidence. This is how science works.)

  94. Hapa responds:

    Eastisred: Hellow :)

    I earlier dealt with a question like this, but i’ll rephrase the reply here:

    What is more likely:

    That a rodeo cowboy with a miniscule budget, no college training/PhD’s on Native American or Nepali folklore, primatology, or any movie-magic skills such as would surpass that of the legendary John Chambers (Award winning special effects master who did the ape man work for the original “Planet of the Apes”, other films. Chambers used to hint that he did the film, only later to say before his death that he was “good”, but “was not that good”), nor a crew of movie magic makers (either low class or high: Patterson didn’t have much do), nor access to fake footprints that are designed to show dynamic interaction with the ground (i.e. tracks that are not always identical, as if they were made by wood or stone. Such tech in hoaxing wasn’t known till the 80’s) or any methods to do so while faking a midtarsal break (if it exists, its a modern technique. During the 60’s hoaxers used carved wooden or stone feet. Neither wooden nor stone feet bend like a midtarsal break (especially the advanced break seen on one of the patterson tracks: they would literally break if you tried to bend them that far, and stone itself don’t bend), and a 6 foot local guy to play the bigfoot (you’d think they could have gotten somebody bigger?) Was capable of having (and subsequently used) a device that impressed numerous and different fake feet (in order to have the variety noted from the PG film tracks) that were designed in a manner not seen again till the 80’s (remember the dynamic interaction with the soil) or even perhaps the 21rst century (if we really do have methods to 100% full proof fake a midtarsal break, even a big one like on at least one PG film track) deep enough to mimic an enormous animal (at least 600 lbs, at most 1500 lbs, depending on whose stats you read), for an incredible distance (600 yards/1800 feet into the forest, then downhill to the creek, cross the creek, then along the canyon, then back into the forest and moving uphill another 300 yards/900 feet, the 900 yards alone accounting to 2,700 feet, over half a mile), and filmed a 6 feet tall man and somehow (though movie magic making skills he never had) made him 7 feet 4 (the most reliable estimate of the height of the individual filmed), and put him in a suit that is of such high quality that we would not see such a convincing Bigfoot until films like Harry and the Hendersons (which came out years after he PG Film) and have not been equaled in any documentary (even with one that had the special effects assistance of a man that worked on the sci fi epic show Babylon 5) or hoax vid since…
    Or that a real animal, unknown to science, was captured on film.

    Saying one is more likely than the other when it comes to this depends on your point of view: if you are skeptic, you will think a hoax is more likely. If you think Bigfoot is legit, you will think a real animal is more likely.

  95. crowmagnumman responds:


    Yeah, it was probably a bit unnecessary for me to call you out on the misspelling, as I was pretty sure that you were referring to Ben Radford. Anyways…

    I think CSI does see themselves as objective, but I think what differentiates them from most investigators is that they don’t take eyewitness accounts quite as seriously. They’re well aware of how witnesses routinely misinterpret their experiences, or unconsciously distort or add details in subsequent retellings. And the big problem with paranormal investigation (and cryptozoology, if you choose to exclude it from the “paranormal” categorization) is that it’s based almost entirely on witness testimony. So, for instance, in the Mothman sighting you’re referring to (is this the Scarberry sighting?), you’re left with a decision. Which is more likely: that the witnesses saw a previously undiscovered, large, humanoid creature that can fly at approximately 100mph? Or that human error resulted in the witnesses mis-identifying a known creature as this “mothman”? Personally, I’d say that the latter is more likely. And I think this divide in thinking is where the misconception arises that CSI is generally biased. EXAMPLE: If a trusted friend of yours tells you that he just went to the store and bought some milk, you would probably just take him at his word. But, if that friend of yours told you that an asteroid is headed for Earth and will destroy us all in three days, you demand proof. For CSI, the standard of proof is roughly proportionate to how extraordinary or unusual a claim is. I think this is the only reasonable approach to the paranormal. Anecdotal evidence is subjected to a higher degree of skepticism when it relates to something undiscovered or seemingly impossible.

    Now the Patterson/Gimlin footage is one instance where I think, perhaps, more focus could be warranted than has been given. As I’ve more or less said, I don’t think of CSI as a perfect organization. But I still consider them to be the only worthwhile paranormal investigation organization in existence, given their strong emphasis on scientific skepticism.

    Now, I could get into defending Dawkins, but I agree that this isn’t really the place for that discussion.

  96. Hapa responds:


    Nah, I don’t mind. Your correction saved me from future misspellings of Radford’s name. Don’t get me started on Heironomous (i’ll never get that one right!).

    I’ve written about how occam’s razor can be inverted based on one’s preconceptions, so I won’t go into that (my last post is a good example, when compared to eastisred’s one before it), but your question is in this case not needed, simply because I have no idea, based on the evidence, what Mothman was. I don’t know the name of the sighting that started the flap (could be the Scarberry), but in that record, the teenaged boy driving the car was scared out of his mind and driving down the road at 100 mph or so, with the thing in question keping pace without flapping its wings. Nobody that is ultra scared is either going to drive away from what it is afraid of at only 40 mph (Great Horned owls get around that fast. As far as I know the type of car could get that fast. I’ll have to check more) or mistake their 40 mph speed by a factor of 60 extra mph when they are driving like a maniac from something that spooked them. An 18 inch tall Barn owl wont do that to a person (nor have I heard it being able to reach that speed, though owl flight speed is hard to research online. Just try it in Google books). As I said, the only animal that comes close to Mothman is the Sandhill Crane (taller than average man, rarely seen in he area, two red spots on its head, great wingspan, combine that with mental intricacies of eyewitness testimony…BOOM you have your Mothman!), but I do not know their flying nor gliding speeds, and I’m not sure if eyewitness limitations could actually lead one to mistake bird’s wings for bat wings (though I think its possible). I’ll check sandhill crane’s flight/glide speed tommorrow.

    Nickell in one of his books said that an Owl reserve is nearby the TNT plant where the first famous sighting occurred, though I can’t remember if he said it was there at the time. He also said there was a stuffed “giant owl” on display in one of the places in town, and said by someone he met in point pleasant to have been shot at the same time the sightings stopped. He provided no measurements of the beast in the book. He also said that it was most likely that the Mothman sightings were due to misidentification of an owl rather than a hoax, but due to the size and speed, a hoax is not entirely out of the question to me.

    What was Mothman? I could come up with various ideas…

    1. Large deformed Owl
    2. Sandhill Crane
    3. Large exotic Owl from the Owl reserve (though even the largest Owls fall far smaller than mthman, and their flying/gliding speeds must be tested)
    4. Some type of hoax (perhaps someone i some kind of flyign suit, perhaps a “Batman wannabe”, if you will, or maybe even a government test)
    5. Undiscovered species of giant owl (Not impossible, albeit I find it unlikely. Either way, need a body to verify it).
    6. True Paranormal suggestions (I don’t like Richard Gere movies that much. Let’s stick to down to earth ideas).

    …But I just have to put a big “?” on Mothman. The case for Bigfoot is far better documented and has far more scientific backing. But both need a type specimen. Assuming of course Mothman is indeed an unidentified new species of owl, and not something else…

  97. Hapa responds:

    BTW: Here is some info on Sandhill Cranes. Not as tall on average as I thought, but some do hit the size range of a 5 foot Mothman, and even taller, with wingspans 6 feet and more. Their flight speed is, however, 25-35 mph, far short of the 100 mph critter that followed the teenagers from the TNT area. They usually cover 100 miles in a day, 500 if wind conditions are right.
    (the above covers their speed as well as other factoids)

    the above mentions that Sandhill Cranes can be 6 feet tall and have a wingspan of 8 feet, more than enough size to be mistaken for a Mothman (even 4 feet could be mistaken as five or six feet tall. I don’t remember if Nickell mentioned them in his book or not, trying to remember. Though they may have been resonsible for some of the sightings, they cannot fly at 100 miles per hour.

  98. flame821 responds:

    @ Hapa

    What about an unusually large specimen of Great Grey Owl? Considering the shape of the head (which CAN look like shoulders without a head) the bright eyes and the general dark shape (esp at night). They tend to range between 2.5 to 3.5 feet naturally so if one had access to a good food supply I could see it reaching a bit larger. I know I’ve seen a few animals in my area (mostly skunks, possums, ground hogs – due to lack of predation, I’m guessing) that are MUCH larger than the norms given in the science books and Wikipedia.

    Place an overly large owl in a scary place, bad lighting, overactive imagination and things can spiral out of control. After that I think the story took on a life of its own. Look at all the embellishments that have come up after the facts, especially once books and movies started coming out.

    That’s one of the things that makes me think P-G (despite shadowy dealings in the past) actually caught the real deal. There didn’t seem to be the huge embellishments that normally follow a story like this. The whole victim/hero thing (which I actually would expect from 60’s cowboys) didn’t happen. And the creature’s face (aka Patty) just doesn’t look like ‘I’ would expect it to if it were a stunt. It is not ape-like, but its not really ‘caveman-like’ either. The hair covered breasts are unusual in the animal world as well. If someone was going to pull a hoax I’d expect them to make it as ‘likely’ as possible, not make glaring ‘mistakes’ of that nature.

  99. Loren Coleman responds:

    With nearly 100 comments on this posting, I’m wondering, are people interested in reading this extended thread on Mothman and Nickell’s theories here too?

  100. DWA responds:


    “That’s one of the things that makes me think P-G (despite shadowy dealings in the past) actually caught the real deal. There didn’t seem to be the huge embellishments that normally follow a story like this. The whole victim/hero thing (which I actually would expect from 60’s cowboys) didn’t happen. And the creature’s face (aka Patty) just doesn’t look like ‘I’ would expect it to if it were a stunt. It is not ape-like, but its not really ‘caveman-like’ either. The hair covered breasts are unusual in the animal world as well. If someone was going to pull a hoax I’d expect them to make it as ‘likely’ as possible, not make glaring ‘mistakes’ of that nature.”

    This is why I consider P/G – while maybe the most interesting single piece of sasquatch evidence – not an essential piece. The case would be as strong if P/G didn’t exist at all, and even were it proven a fake.

    Having read many, many reports, I can tell you this: practically every kind of encounter it is possible to have with a wild animal, someone has had with a sasquatch. “Monsters” don’t work like that. You dont’ have partial-body sightings; vocalizations only; vocals/footprints only; none of that stuff. But the shadings of nuance in sas encounter reports are phenomenally varied. They read like people encountering many different variations on the theme of “something in the wild,” not like monster movies, and not like guy-in-suit. And with all that variation, point after point after point remains remarkably consistent, with people who, if you think they are comparing notes, you are a conspiracy theorist. And a nutty one at that. They are simply describing an animal they saw.

    But everything I have seen that plainly isn’t a sasquatch is one more tired variation on: man in suit. (If a video has human proportions, that is what it is.) Nothing I have ever seen attempting to imitate any kind of ape comes close to the P/G figure. And every imitation I’ve seen is similar to every other.

    To me, it’s compelling; and many other people who know what they are talking about – including scientists degreed multiple times in relevant fields – agree with me.

    That’s it. The reality of the animal is not a slam dunk; but the case for full engagement in this question by science very clearly is.

  101. crowmagnumman responds:


    I would be. I’ve read a lot of Mothman/Point Pleasant material, but nothing from Nickell about the subject yet.

  102. Hapa responds:


    I didn’t know Great Grey Owls got that big (!). I think that’s bigger than the great Horned owl. If that owl reserve was there at the time of the sightings, and had provided superb nutrition to such an owl since infancy, then like with humans that owl could have been larger than normal for the species, and even more so if the environment lacked a lot of stress (compared to the wild, a good wildlife preserve would seem like a country club. They’re not being hunted or having to stress over finding food or living without, after all). Don’t know for sure if birds respond to diet stress and growth the same way humans do, but it seems almost certain that they do. Plus there is that stuffed “Giant Owl” that was mentioned by Nickell. If it or perhaps a large snowy owl, “giant” due to nutrition, it could have been altered by human memory intricacies.

    How fast do they fly? If they can reach 100 mph or near it, let alone glide at that speed (though the eyewitnesses might have gotten the gliding aspect wrong to due to the fear and circustances: perhaps it did flap its wings) then that would be a likely canidate as well, even more so if it is not a common native animal (an exotic escapee from that reserve, not seen by the locals, would be more likely to frighten the locals and cause a crypto-flap).

    Is there any documentation of escapee owls from the reserve? Could they get in and out without being detected by the reserve staff? This needs to be invesigated before we can conclude a large variety of owl was indeed involved.

    Mr Coleman: Hello :) I am a big fan! And yes I would like a new thread on Nickell’s views on Mothman. That would be interesting!

  103. CDC responds:


    I thinks it’s the Patterson/Gimlin film more than anything else.

    That film is the fuel to this and many other fires.


  104. flame821 responds:

    @ Hapa

    Looks like Great Grey Owls max out at 40 miles per hour, give or take, but like all owls, their flight is silent. (It was the silent flight that made me think ‘owl’ in the first place) GGO would not be native to that area, they tend to stay further North unless food is scarce then they go where the food is. But if that sanctuary had one or more I could easily see this being the first step in Mothman. Although GGO eyes tend to glow yellow, not red.

    @ Loren

    I would welcome a thread on Mothman. I hate going off topic, but its so nice to be able to discuss these theories without having people think you’re off your bean.

  105. flame821 responds:

    @ Hapa

    I’m not nearly as knowledgeable about Mothman, but do any of the reports mention Mothman making any noise? this site has a link to the known calls of GGO both adult and juvenile. They are known to fly low, usually 4 to 20 feet above the ground, and can be very aggressive when protecting their nesting area.

    As for escaping an enclosure? Your guess is as good as mine, but I can tell you from personal experience it varies greatly depending on the individual animal as well as the species. I keep ducks and the Mallards are forever getting out of my fenced in yard, while the Runners and Khaki NEVER get out. I can’t explain it, and I’ve tried to figure out how they do it but so far no luck.

  106. crowmagnumman responds:

    “I’m not nearly as knowledgeable about Mothman, but do any of the reports mention Mothman making any noise?”

    Not that I recall. I seem to remember it generally being reported as being completely silent; not even flapping its wings to fly.

  107. Hapa responds:


    Well the speed and eye glow is wrong but otherwise pretty close. Perhaps this owl’s eyes might glow red if a bright light was to shine on it? Or maybe it was a different type of owl. Either way, though it could account for some sightings (i.e. the stuffed giant owl), it would not account for the flying speed (though the silent flight might explain the witness testimony about the thing “gliding” at 100 mph, due to eyewitness mishap).

    Now back to the subject at hand: I’m still trying to figure out that website about the horse tracks comparable to the Bigfoot tracks. Horses hold while standing (and I would think walking) 60 % of their weight on the forelimbs, 40% on the hind. with a 1400 lbs horse Ive calculated that it would hold 840 lbs in the front (420 on each limb) and 560 in the back (280 on each hind leg). This is an upper estimate of the horse that Gimlin rode, due to the combined weight of the horse and Gimlin himself. Since the patterson creature is estimated to be 700 lbs, I tried to think up a scaled down equation: Which would make a deeper print: a 500 lbs horse (150 lbs each forelimb, 100 on each hind), or a 250 lbs man (I would reckon an oversimplified 125 lbs on each foot, But I don’t know how to compensate for the swinging arms) with flat feet (to replicate as much as possible the foot-build of the Sasquatch, complete with Midtarsal break)? I would think that the forelimbs would make a deeper imprint (due to more weight being held down, smaller area for the weight to go down on) and I would think very likely the hind limbs would do the same due to the smaller surface area of hooves despite the light weight load. That would seem to indicate that the Patterson creature could not have been 700 lbs, or half the weight of Gimlin combined with his 1200-1300 lbs horse. However, the weight of the horse is not certain, the soil itself did not show uniform depth of the sasquatch prints (one was 1.25 inches, others about an inch. Some, if not all in the woods were barely recognizable, just like at times when we walk over a great distance and make more noticeable tracks than others due to the variety of the oil around us) and thus raises the possibility for quirks in the soil giving away a misleading estimate of weight, and we still can’t fully discount yet Titmus estimate of 600 lbs based on comparison with a track made in the area by his 200 lbs brother in law (the math does not seem to me to show a 600 lbs creature, but then again I could be misreading that estimate).

  108. Hapa responds:

    Okay about the bigfoot tracks: the 1.25 mark was meant to be 1/2, as in 1/2 of an inch. Titmus’ brother in law managed that depth with the heel of his shoe and 1/8 or less of an inch elsewhere on the track. Based on that, and the fact the deepest bigfoot track went an inch and a half, he and his brother in law (a big game hunter who traveled Africa, Asia, etc) estimated the 600 lbs weight. That throws a new fastball into the horse/bigfoot track debate, considering that Gimlin said his horse’s track went “better than half” that of the bigfoot tracks. Seems like there was something to do with differences in parts of the soil where the men and beasts walked.

    Something to still think about, though…

  109. Hapa responds:

    BTW: this is the site where i got this info:

    Read under “Is the Patterson film a hoax or a film of a real creature?”, subsection “Roger Patterson’s Movie” and go waaaaaaaaay down, and you’ll eventually find Titmus’ notes about the measurements.

    Hope this helps to clear this mess about weight measurements up.

  110. Loren Coleman responds:

    Mothman, according to some ear-witness reports in 1966-1967, sounded like a large squeaky mouse. I mentioned this in my 2002 book on Mothman.


  111. Hapa responds:

    Large squeaky mouse. I don’t know of owls having that type of noise (never heard them make it, doubt they do). I also have no idea about the noise that Sandhill cranes make. Its hard to come up with a non-new species or paranormal explanation for the phenomena.

    The squeak does fit with that of a bat, and the wings of Mothman were said to be bat like. Mothman didn’t look a thing like a Flying Fox (biggest foxes in the world, though not native to North America, could be found in game reserves/zoos/private research facilities, though this is a guess). Perhaps the avian world is the wrong place to look.

  112. flame821 responds:

    Thank you Mr. Coleman :-)

    A large squeaky mouse would make sense if Mothman (or at least some of the sightings) were of an aggressive mother (female owls tend to be larger than males) protecting her young.

    @ Hapa

    You’ve got me on the math. (Paging Charlie Eppes) We could probably do a decent estimate on height/width = mass going on the assumption that Patty seems to be rather robust and remembering that muscle weights more than fat. I would guess she’s large boned but would use a medium bone build to calculate just because its better to underestimate these things. However without knowing the composition and moisture content of the soil at the time the tracks were made you’re going to have the devil’s time trying to get any workable numbers out of the calculation. Not to mention that the mass spread out over a 15-18 inch foot will give different ppsi than one spread out over a 10-12 inch foot.

  113. PhotoExpert responds:

    Hey Ben! I have not forgotten about you or my journal! Quite honestly, it does not rank high on my priority list. I know the word was used as early as 1977 by native Puerto Ricans. When you know something, like 2+2=4, one does not really feel compelled to prove it. But just in order to set the record straight, it is worth taking “some” of my valuable free time to at least try and find that journal. So I am working on it as time permits.

    With that being said, I found the time to check several of my walk in closets and one of my environmentally controlled storage units. I still have four more storage units to check through and a couple of walk in closets. It may never turn up but if there is a chance, I am going to check it out at my leisure. Afterall, my businesses do not run themselves. It might take a year to find the time to do it and even then, I might come up empty handed. But I may actually find the journal and prove your facts incorrect.

    I do have to thank you though. I did stumble across a journal from my trip in the Amazon Jungle. I thought that may be missing but I did find it in one of the walk-in closets. So thanks for motivating me a bit and I found something that I forgot about.

    And I do appreciate you remembering the $250 offer. Hopefully, I will be calling you sooner than later in need of those finanacial resources to prove a point, one that I alreaedy know is fact.

  114. fooks responds:

    mothman, ok.

    @ hapa

    anyway, a horse could not make the prints unless the guy who designed the suit made the prosthesis for the horse, too.

    then trained the horse to walk in them to fake the vid.

    the film is real, it can’t be duplicated because it’s real.

    lucky shot? duh!

    harry and the hendersons and chewy were top of the line.

    big budget fx’s and forget about the planet of the apes. that was all face.

  115. bobzilla responds:

    Well, I’m sure my comments will be buried in amongst all the bickering, but I’ll post anyway.

    Hoaxes, Suits and SFX
    Two incidents come to mind. One, the infamous Alien Autopsy. This film was scrutinized quite a bit and even looked at by Stan Winston Studios. They said, they thought it was real, because they thought they couldn’t do as well. Later, it was found out to be a hoax:

    The other, the Gable film. To me, that looked pretty real. It showed just enough to make you wonder. But, alas, that was proven a hoax:

    I would have never imagined a man could run that well on all fours. This brings me to the PG film where “experts” say, no human can walk or move like that. To me, the walk looks more human than ape.

    Now, before everyone gets red faced, I do hope that we discover sasquatch as a real animal group living somewhere. I just have some problems with the PG film. I think the experts are using as many definitives as they accuse skeptics of using.

    The walk looks very nonchalant, like a man, not an animal. It walks more human than ape like. The head turn (which has been stated that no human can turn their head like) looks as if he is turning around for possibly some direction from the cameraman, or is turning on a queue from the cameraman.

    A close up of the face looks a lot like the caveman face that (I think) Bob Heironimus or Phillip Morris describe than it does an ape.

    All I’m saying is, I don’t think the PG film is “it”. Why was there no follow up to see where the creature went? Why was it out in the open? It still has a staged feeling to me.

    Hey, if it’s ever proven as the real deal, great! For me, I need a little more to go on.


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