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Pine Ridge Update: 9/06

Posted by: Loren Coleman on September 7th, 2006

Paul Smith Bigfoot

The cryptozoological events at the Pine Ridge Reservation of the Oglala Sioux continue to occur. Despite debates about what it is, whatever is being encountered is still being seen.

The sightings have been recorded via police scanners and confirmed by the Chief of Police. But other members of other agencies are seeing these Sasquatch.

Backchanneling emails from law enforcement individuals working on site inform me that a serious situation is developing in South Dakota. It appears that definite proof of the Bigfoot being encountered at the reservation is mounting.

For reasons of confidentiality and safety, all I can say presently is that law enforcement records indicate that as recently as September 4th, the Bigfoot was encountered at 3 a.m. north of Pine Ridge. As officers from a variety of agencies got closer to the large mass, which is reportedly very quick, it hid behind pine trees. It was also picked up on equipment employed in the search for this “thing,” as one officer termed it to me.

One of the scopes being used responds to heat and cold, is usually employed by the drug task force unit, and during September registered a definite “hit” for almost ten minutes. The “hit” was not human, but now understood by the officers using it to be what is being reported as the “Bigfoot.”

(The image at top may be clicked to enlarge it. Does the Pine Ridge Bigfoot look like this one drawn by Paul Smith for the cover of my book Bigfoot! The True Story of Apes in America?)

Anyone wishing to backchannel me info on these events may email me directly at Loren Coleman [at] maine [dot] rr [dot] com – thank you.

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.

53 Responses to “Pine Ridge Update: 9/06”

  1. Bennymac responds:

    When you say “a serious situation is developing”, what exactly does that mean? Are these officers only observing? Do you know what their protocol is in regards to engaging the “thing”? Very interesting….

  2. Loren Coleman responds:

    Well, if I could say, I would, but I must respect my sources’s wishes at this point. But by “serious,” I am talking in coded law enforcement jargon about evidence being gathered. Stay tuned….

  3. Dan Spencer responds:

    Could somebody please comment about the forest coverage and ecology of the reservation.

    Excuse my ignorance, I’m a flatlander from Michigan, but I seem to have this image of South Dakota as being prairie land.

    Also have any Bigfoot researchers gone out yet to survey the area?

  4. loyalfromlondon responds:

    Am I wrong for wanting them to shoot it? Not to kill mind you, but enough of an injury to capture it.

    Let’s put this legend to rest and bring the animal into reality.

  5. Bennymac responds:

    Pine Ridge Rez is about the size of Conneticut. The terrain is made up of hills, cliffs, buttes, mesas, badlands and a surprising number of redcedar dotted valleys. A vast portion of it is wild prairie.

    It is also about 60 miles from the Wind Cave National park and close to the Black Hills.

    Sadly it is also the location of the Wounded Knee massacre (1890).

  6. Dan Spencer responds:

    Thank you Bennymac for the information.

  7. shumway10973 responds:

    loyalfromlondon I believe the term you should say is tranquilizer gun. Get an expert at tranquilizing other large primates out there (okay maybe 2 or 3), let them ride with the officers and when at least one sees a big foot, they tranquilize it. A radio collar probably wouldn’t work for big foot, so I’m thinking the angel star chip. It can be tracked via satelite anywhere, plus it is small and is placed under the skin. I am surprised that big foot(s) are being so docile with all the encounters. After a bit I would get miffed and do something that would cause problems, but is sounds like all the reports are saying that these creatures are running away. Sorry loyalfromlondon, but you only shoot an animal for 2 reasons, self defense and food. After all we know nothing about them. We can only assume their hearts are in the same area as our own, but if it isn’t any attempt at just wounding could kill it.

  8. BurningStarFour responds:

    Agreed shumway10973 tranqing it would be the best option at this point due in part to A: We really don’t know how many bigfoot there truly are in the wild, meaning very few could be left and B: If killing it could be avoided why not do so, I should think a live bigfoot would mean more for study then a dead one, let alone the fact there would be quite a few lovers of bigfoot who would be quite angry…

  9. mystery_man responds:

    I agree with the tranquilizer idea. No way to definitively just wound it with a gun. Besides, encountering this fantastic creature in the woods, I think even a police sharpshooter might not have the presence of mind to do that. It would most likely develop complications from such a wound anyway. Why would we want to kill or even injure what would be more useful to us alive and healthy? I think tracking it is a good idea if there is a feasible way. Alot of known animals do not survive well in captivity at all, and I surmise that the bigfoot may well fall into that category. Most animals are better studied in their natural habitat anyway. Think Diane Fossey.

  10. billkirbywofb responds:

    A few months ago I was reading a book by the head Vet at the San Diego Zoo. And he was describing the problems of tranquilizing known animals, let alone an unknown animal.

    Too much drugs and you kill the animal.

    Too little and you may have your proof as the bigfoot tears off the head of the Vet.

    You look at wildlife programs and it looks so easy.

    What is not shown are all the animals killed as the proper doseage was being discovered.

  11. mystery_man responds:

    Easy, like shooting an animal in the leg to wound it? Nothing is easy when dealing with animals in the wild, especially an animal such as Bigfoot. They are unpredictable creatures and you are right, tranquilizers are not fool proof. But if it isn’t enough, it would probably be subdued while it was being tagged which would save the unfortunate vet’s head. Most wild animals are handled very carefully when tranquilized and I assume a Bigfoot would be no different. If it is too much, well, you were going to shoot it anyway right? My point is, it is better to try and do this in a way which does not end in the death of this creature. No, it isn’t easy, but isn’t it worth a shot?

  12. Dan Spencer responds:

    According to Grover Krantz in his book “Bigfoot Prints”, tranquilizers have a pretty low chance of sucess due to the lack of information on the dosage level needed, the time necessary to prepare the dart to fire, and finally the poor range and accuracy of the weapon. Furthermore if by chance you do dart the sasquatch, you may been in a world of hurt if the dosage isn’t high enough. I found Krantz’s reasoning satisfactory but then again I’m just a layman. I think if somebody is really serious about confirming the existence of Sasquatch a large caliber rifle is what’s needed. Unforetunate yes, but it may be necessary to preserve the species….if they really exist.

  13. mystery_man responds:

    If you shoot it and miss, or the caliber isn’t enough, you could be in a world of hurt as well. A charging bear, for instance can still maul you if you don’t hit it right, am I correct? Especially when it’s just shot in the leg? I’d rather have a bigfoot that is slightly irritated than one that is in a fury from being shot. Both ways are potentially dangerous, but I just feel that on one hand, you have a dead or drugged specimen, on the other a dead Bigfoot. Maybe it will come down to having to kill one, but I sure would like to think that’s not the answer.

  14. mystery_man responds:

    There were some very good ideas for traps in the comments for an earlier article on the Bigfoot trap. It would be interesting to see what people’s ideas and theories are for capturing a specimen non violently.

  15. Alaska-boy responds:

    We need to get some first-hand witnesses over to South Dakota before the opportunity to get to the bottom of whatever’s happening is gone.

  16. Dan Spencer responds:

    It is my hope that they prove Sasquatch’s existence by finding bones or a carcass. I wonder if anybody has really even bothered to look?

  17. Sky King responds:

    Why so many of you talking about shooting BF with ANYTHING? Steve-O is wagging his finger at you: “Shame, mates, SHAME!”

  18. sausage1 responds:

    Agreed. Why cause it distress just to satisfy our curiosity?

    The only reason may be to establish its existence in order to protect its habitat. but modern day governments aren’t exactly top drawer about even that.

  19. Dan Spencer responds:

    Steve-O, from JackA$$???

    Sausage1, the 2nd paragraph of your response is the only reason I think taking a speciman would be justified. Extraordinary claims need extrodinary evidence. To be honest just seeing one would be enough for me.

    Not that I plan on going out in the woods anytime with a rifle to hunt Bigfoot. I’d have no business doing something like that.

  20. Kent Ballard responds:

    Have any of you actually ever fired a tranquilizer rifle? I have. I was once employed by an exotic animal farm that sold animals to zoos.

    We used scopolamine (hope I spelled that correctly) as our drug of choice. In WW II they used that on humans as “truth serum”. It blocks out the higher brain functions if given in a proper dose. Just a little more will knock out a human. A little more than that will kill him.

    Trank guns are VERY short-range weapons. To penetrate an eland’s (African antelope) hide you must be within thirty yards or less. I can only assume bigfoot would have an equally tough hide, perhaps even more so.

    I was never allowed to judge the dosage or load the dart. That’s a job for someone more professional than I was. The margin of error is very thin.

    Once shot, any animal will react as if it has just been stabbed with a short ice pick. Some of them whirl on you and charge, others run away as fast as possible, some just stand there and drop. There’s really no telling what antelope and deer will do. We have utterly no idea what a bigfoot’s reaction would be.

    But he would have almost exactly five minutes to react. That’s how long the proper dosage of scopolamine takes to infiltrate the blood system and drop the animal. My guess is if the bigfoot did not run off howling into the night and took offensive reactions, the dosage wouldn’t matter. They would have to stop him from disassembling the shooter with large-bore rifles, and they would have to be very quick about it at thirty yards range.

    A better way would be some kind of trap. I leave the construction to your imagination, but I can tell you that a successful trank hit would almost certainly kill the man who fired it.

  21. JLENA101064 responds:

    If someone ends up shooting one & end up hurting it they will regret it. Most likley this one guy took a shot at a bigfoot or his female primmate or child primate. This bigfoot went to this guy’s house broke out all his windows some how he tore the front door and screen door of there hinges so the put the refrigrator in the door way and he took the door hing off from that too. Him,his wife & kids got out of the back door & took off in the truck and left. The next day they went back & they said it look like a tornadio hit it. So now do you think it wroth shooting at one now? these people could of died because this guy took a shot at him or his primates.

  22. Cutch responds:

    THIS is the way true discovery happens. Not when some writer claims to “have photos”. Quiet but important.

  23. sgajraj responds:

    Dan Spencer, I think Sky King is referring to the late Steve Irwin, the “Crocodile Hunter”

  24. brineblank responds:

    Pretty interesting news…gee, it makes me wonder why cryptozoologists aren’t flocking to the area since there seems to be such high reportings and it appears from so many of the TV shows have large groups with some hi-tech recording devices showing up for much less…since there seems to be so much networking on here and other similar sites it seems like it would make a great expedition (I’d even go if someone can tell BF to hold off until summer break).

  25. P.S.Anderson responds:

    I actually agree with Sky King on this one. New primates are being discovered, photographed and even named all the time in South America without a human coming within 50 yards of one, let alone killing a creature. Is death the only way that will satisfy certain blood thirsty humans, or are we all killers and destoyers of nature by instinct?

  26. sschaper responds:

    It would be nice if an experienced field primatologist could get out there and work with the police. Maybe that -is- being done, and kept quiet for a number of fairly obvious reasons.

  27. bigsassy responds:

    I think that they should pass a law making it illegal to shoot a bigfoot and pronto before someone does kill one there (if that hasn’t already happened). They passed a law in Skagit Co. in Washingon State and should do the same in Pine Ridge. Based on reports I think that the weight of this bigfoot can be estimated and a “workable” dosage of tranquilizer will bring it down close to where it is tranquilized. There really is no need to kill or injure one of these. Also if it is a hoax and someone is running around in a suit there life may be spared.

  28. Craig Woolheater responds:


    The ordinance protecting Bigfoot was actually passed in Skamania County, WA.

    The ordinance was listed here on Cryptomundo on December 16, 2005.

  29. bigsassy responds:

    Well they need to pass one in Pine Ridge and quick before the lunatics show up and start prancing around with their bear rifles.

  30. JLENA101064 responds:

    They need to pass that all over the world to protect the primates. They have the right to live as much as we do. I think if one of you were a bigfoot would you like it if people just to shoot at you for the fun of it? If you treat them with kindness & respect. Then they would most likely treat you with kindness & respect.

  31. skepticaled responds:

    What infuriates me about all of this is that in this day and age of small digital camcorders/cameras, reports keep coming in of sightings but no one has produced any footage or image worth discussing. Camcorders have nightlights and extenders to really reach out to about 25-30 feet or more. It’s time to put the money where the mouth is! If UFOs can be captured on videotape/digital film so can these elusive creatures.

  32. Sky King responds:

    bigsassy Says:

    Well they need to pass one in Pine Ridge and quick before the lunatics show up and start prancing around with their bear rifles.

    Well, I don’t think that’s going to happen. This is Ogala Sioux land, and you’re not supposed to traipsing around without permission, except for the casinos, and that’s actually implied consent. The tribe ain’t gonna go for that, and the tribal police can handle it.

    I believe our curiosity, zeal, whatever you want to call it, doesn’t justify our interference with them. We’ve interfered with their habitat more than enough already. Some things, weighed properly, are just better off left unknown. That’s what a wise man told me once.

    Am I the only one sensing a rabid kind of desperation to prove BF exists RIGHT NOW? It’s not worth it. Someone’s gonna get hurt real bad or killed, and that’s just the Bigfoots.

  33. Sky King responds:

    I forgot to add that harming a Yeti is illegal in Nepal, with very severe penalties.

  34. kamoeba responds:

    If you’re going to shoot a Bigfoot, please do it with a camera, not a gun. If you shoot and kill a Bigfoot, then discover it’s pretty close to being human, then you just may be a murderer. I would rather glimpse a Bigfoot and be ridiculed about it for the rest of my life than shoot one and get into serious legal troubles I never dreamed existed.

  35. Pvolitans responds:

    I’m quite optimistic about this case. The Pine Ridge reports are probably some of the more credible Bigfoot encounters we’ve seen in a while. Nothing like the fiasco of a captured juvenile Bigfoot.

    The combined weight of testimonies from law enforcement agents and a non-sensational approach could very well be the baby steps towards gathering irrefutable evidence for the existence of Bigfoot.

    Looking forward to more updates.

  36. mystery_man responds:

    I really think the best way to study and learn about any animal, known or unknown, is to study it in its natural habitat. Being a bit of a naturalist, I have learned far more from live specimens than any dead carcass I have ever encountered or dissected, and being a biology teacher, I’ve dissected a few. We don’t have to kill them to establish their existence, we just have to learn more about their movements, their habits, and where to find them. Field study of these amazing creatures will yield more than any body. As has been mentioned, a lot of animals have been accepted by science on very little evidence. I wonder how we can convince people without killing one? The hoaxes certainly don’t help. I really just don’t think shooting one is the way to go. We need to carefully collect evidence and not just for the sake of proving they exist, but for ensuring they continue to do so.

  37. Scotty responds:

    The creature isn’t hurting anyone and should be left alone to carry on with the business of survival. If it is indeed a “Bigfoot”, I hope it uses its big feet to hightail it out of the area before someone shoots it. I can’t understand why so much money is spent on searching for the so-called “missing link” in the evolution of the human species. We’re here and that’s that! Instead of wasting money and time in searching out our past, both would be much better spent on insuring our future!

  38. larzker responds:

    I don’t know how this is different from all the other bigfoot sightings.

    Worrying about a ‘bigfoot’ being shot is like worrying about how you’ll spend your trillion dollar lottery winnings.

    Something as big as a bear but there have never been any photographs or skeletal remains…and it outsmarts 300 million Americans and the rest of the world’s 5 billion people by hiding from cameras and hiding bones??

  39. Scotty responds:

    HA!HA! I have to agree with you!

  40. Running Thunder responds:

    These creatures are Wakan and those indigenous people whom have lived in harmony with these giants know and respect their place in our ongoing relationships.

    Initially fear of the unknown is involved but of all encounters I know of in the Pacific Northwest there have never been agressive actions by these giants in the wilderness. Close encounters with these big ones leave a person in awe of their curiosity, intelligence and grace of movement within their environment.

    In due time perhaps we shall understand more deeply their and our own purpose on this planet.

    May peace and safe travels be with them.

  41. mystery_man responds:

    Have never been any photographs? Hmmm, have you been reading up on this before saying this? The above statements sound a lot like what people said about the Gorilla before it was discovered. It hid an awfully long time in remote wilderness, in Africa which has quite a population too. Let’s also remember the ceolocanth, which hid under our noses for millions of years. They used to think the sun revolved around the Earth, too. Remember, there are a lot of remote areas where those 300 million Americans are nowhere to be found. I’m not saying it definately exists, but to just write Bigfoot off is as bad as blindly accepting that it is out there.

  42. downag responds:

    Are they using FLIR scopes like the police do on the reality crime shows on TV? Are they recording this? Are they hiding what they have? What’s going on up there? An animal can no more outrun a helicopter with FLIR than a man can! And the tapes would be “telling”!

    (F)orward (L)ooking (I)nfa (R)ed

    Where’s the money to do this? Somebody has to have it.

  43. Dan Spencer responds:

    People can go out and collect all the footprint casts, hair samples, a dung droppings in the world and they will be dismissed out of hand. It doesn’t matter how many movies or pictures are taken, people will assume it’s a guy in a monkey suit. The scientific community as a whole is convinced that Bigfoot is about as real as unicorns and elfs. We need a body.

  44. planettom responds:

    Time to mount some motion sensor cameras and maybe a video camera or two. I’m sure they can round some up somewhere. If I had the funds, I would donate to the camera fund. Are the wild fires still burning in the area?

  45. rayrich responds:

    I for one hope they don’t try to shoot this bigfoot. The proof will bring out all the naysayers from behind their university desks and they will all want to capture and study these animals wanting to take credit for their discovery as well as exploiting them. The true believers who have actually had an experience don’t want any part of this exploitation. Leave them alone.

  46. Sky King responds:

    Very well said, Running Thunder! Although throwing small boulders at a canoe IS an act of aggresstion for certain, it’s unlikely they are intended to find their target. It’s just a way of saying, “STAY AWAY!”

  47. Sky King responds:

    downag Says:
    Are they hiding what they have?

    Almost certainly, and I thank them.

  48. wrath of the real responds:

    I get the feeling Big Foot is or could be just as intellegent as humans. After all they have been extremely elusive rarely being photographed and never captured. We have never positively seen a body, even of their dead. They are obviously one with nature using all of the natural resources to survive and avoid us. To shoot and kill a Big Foot would absolutely be a travesty considering they may be the closest intellectual equal to us on this planet. I want to see one but prefer not to let the world exploit them.

  49. Bluestroke responds:

    I can see the Ogala Sioux not taking too lightly people discussing hunting expeditions to kill Big Foot on their nation. those foraging through the Res without permission and most likely a Rez friend, could find themselves facing a lil Indian justice. Or at the recieving end of a practical joke. That is not meant to downplay the reports as the stories are well known among the Sioux and the thought of convincing the Sioux nation to allow an acceptable form of evidence collection, could quietly be the story of the year.

    I can only imagine the guy before the band council trying to convince them that killing one of these creatures is scientifically neccessary to prove it exists.

  50. mystery_man responds:

    It is very unfortunate and I hate to admit it, but a body might end up being what it takes to make people take notice and put more funding into studying these creatures. The same is going to go for creatures like the thylacine and that is a creature that was proven to exist. I wish there was a way around it. I always find it interesting how some testimony and maybe a blurry photo is enough to proclaim an animal like the Ivory Billed Woodpecker still exists, but for other animals and cryptids in particular, you have to have that body. I just hope the guy who ever shoots one has the decency to share it for the sake of science and not a fat paycheck.

  51. P.S.Anderson responds:

    Whether Pine Ridge or the White Mountains, the Native Americans are going to be the ones to disclose nature’s Big secret.

  52. Xeno2814 responds:

    I have to say that shooting to wound a Sasquatch is not the best idea. At best, it might be almost imposible to pull off with a moving target due to the generally small size of the target being aimed at (Arm or leg). That’s why police officers are trained to fire at the central mass of a target, so there’s a greater chance of hitting it.

    Just imagine trying to shoot the arm of a person that is rapidly walking through the woods, constantly moving in and out of foliage and blocking the shot. You stand a better chance of accidentally shooting the creature in the torso.

    That being said, this really is an intriguing case and I hope that something comes of it!

  53. Jeremy_Wells responds:

    Ideological differences of opinion when it comes to harming animals of any sort aside, photos can be hoaxed and videos can be hoaxed.

    The only way to prove the existence, beyond a shadow of a doubt, is to collect a live/dead specimen.

    Maybe this means tranquing one (although I’d hate to be the guy who accidentally shot a kid in a gorilla suit full of enough drugs to stop his heart) or maybe it means killing one. Hopefully though it means eventually capturing and chipping one for field tracking or finding an already dead body.

    In the same way that I’d hate to be the guy who shot a person full of enough tranq to drop a grizzly bear, I’d also have just enough doubt that it could be a person to never pull the trigger on a gun of any kind.

    I think what is called for is to do what is being done here and collect reports, determine which areas of the country are most likely to produce the evidence, and wait until live capture or obtaining a naturally deceased corpse is feasible.

    Anything else, well… regardless of how you feel about collecting animals, there is always the off chance that it is just some fool kid having fun with a gorilla suit (and maybe a recent growth spurt), and regardless of how we feel about hoaxers, no kid (or adult) deserves to lose their life over a bad joke.

    Patience and perseverance

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