Behind the Scenes of Finding Bigfoot: “Sketching Sasquatch” with Cliff Barackman

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on December 25th, 2013

Cliff posted his behind the scenes views for the episode of Animal Planet’s Finding Bigfoot entitled “Sketching Sasquatch” on his website.

Finding Bigfoot – Sketching Sasquatch

On Finding Bigfoot’s third visit to California, we focused our efforts on the Lake Tahoe area. Among bigfooters, arguably the most famous piece of evidence out of this area is the Tahoe Scream, a high-pitched scream thought to have been made by a juvenile sasquatch, which to this day is not publicly distributed. However, what most bigfooters do not realize is that numerous other recordings of strange vocalizations came from the same area around the same time. Bob Strain and Tom Yamarone obtained one such recording.

Tom and Bob’s recording was obtained adjacent to an outlying housing tract near Meyers, CA. To the east of the last street is nothing but some decommissioned roads, and wilderness leading up to granite peaks topping 11,000 feet in elevation. There is more than enough room for a small group of sasquatches to move about and remain more-or-less out of view. It is perfect bigfoot habitat.

Tom has written up his perspective on what transpired while filming with the Finding Bigfoot crew. You can read about his experience on his blog by clicking here.

One of the highlights of filming this episode was to listen to the account of the two women’s sighting in Genoa Canyon. Their report can be found on the BFRO database here, and the investigator who looked into it was Kathy Moskowitz-Strain. She found the two women for the producers of Finding Bigfoot and invited them to participate in filming our town hall meeting. Interestingly, the two women had not seen each other in many years, and their stories have not changed a bit in all that time.

To cover more ground (and to break up the show’s format a bit), Matt and I split off from Bobo and Ranae to do some solo investigation. Matt took a look around Stumpy Meadows Reservoir, while I spent my nights in the vicinity of Union Valley Reservoir. Neither team got any bigfoot action on the solo trips, but as my monologue in the episode stated, I didn’t really care. It’s just good to be out in the woods.

The highlight of the trip was definitely the last night investigation. It was a very windy night, and we were at a very high elevation a few miles off Highway 50. We found an area that would be more sheltered from the wind, though it was still blowing pretty hard. Our attempts at broadcasting Tom and Bob’s howls were thwarted by the weather, so Ranae and I hiked into the woods to do calls of our own in a more sheltered location.

Bobo and Matt had already left to work one side of the ridgeline we were on, so my team took the other side. At one point, we received an excited radio call that Bobo and Matt had been approached and yelled at by what could only have been a bigfoot. Bobo later described it as one of the top ten encounters of his life. I never heard any noises from their location because they were so far away and the wind was obscuring all distant sounds.

Ranae and I started making vocalizations to draw attention to our location, hoping to draw the bigfoot by the other team over to us. After a few tries we got two very good call backs from our northwest. Bobo and Matt were to our southwest, so we figured that the bigfoot had made its way north and was headed down into the valley below us. The time between the other team’s vocalizations and ours was about five to ten minutes.

While Bobo and Matt’s vocalizations were probably better to listen to in person, ours was the one that was picked up by the microphones. I wish I could have heard what Bobo and Matt heard, as their description of it was amazing. The producers also described the same things, confirming the other team’s observations.

The Sierra Nevada Mountain range is near and dear to my heart, having spent weeks on end in the wilds there, and having heard bigfoots there more than once. The Lake Tahoe area in particular is the kind of rich habitat that all of the local animals take advantage of despite a sizable human population. It should come as no surprise to any bigfooter that this region continues to yield sighting reports on a regular basis.

~ Cliff Barackman

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

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