Norcal Bigfoot Tracks Found

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on February 27th, 2007

This week, I am visiting friends in Northern California, a couple of hours north of San Francisco. It’s not a Bigfoot trip, so to speak, but the 11 year old son of my friend is intensely interested in the subject.

My friend Jill was with my wife and myself when we had our Bigfoot sighting on Memorial Day 1994 near Alexandria, Louisiana. She has told her son Mitchel about the incident and he was fascinated.

Last night, we drove to Occidental to eat dinner at one of Jill’s favorite restaurants, Negri’s Original Italian Restaurant. Along the way, we attempted to find the location of a nearby Bigfoot sighting from 1980.
After returning from dinner, we watched The Legend of Boggy Creek. While it is somewhat comical to watch it these days, I remember seeing it for the first time as a child, just as Mitchell saw it last night.

On Saturday, we will be heading south towards Santa Cruz. We will be visiting Mike Rugg and the Bigfoot Discovery Project.

Meeting us there will be John & Montra Freitas and Bob and Kathy Strain, as well as other Bigfooters.

And young Mitchel will be coming along as well.

Well, now that I have shared that, let’s get to the Bigfoot tracks. I noticed this morning the following story from the Marysville, CA area, only 160 miles from where I am now. How great is that?

Go to the CBS 13 Sacramento website to watch the video.

Is Bigfoot Living In The Forest Above Marysville?

(CBS13) MARYSVILLE, Calif. There’s a big mystery in our backyard tonight. Is a Bigfoot living in the forest above Marysville? A local couple has found big prints in those woods and experts are saying it may not be a hoax.

It was just after a rainstorm, a great time for hunting deer. It was a perfect place, high up in the dense woods of the Plumas National Forest.

Chuck and Michelle Padigo had been down the logging road lots of times, including just a few days earlier.

Past two gates, about three miles from the highway, in a recently logged area, Michelle looked down and spotted something very strange.

What the Padigo’s say they encountered was more than three dozen huge footprints spread out over a hundred yards or more.

“I swear the hair on my arms stood up,” says Michelle.

The couple recorded their discovery with photographs and returned to take more pictures.

Joining the Padigos now was Scot Woodland, a Nevada County search and rescue team member and a certified expert tracker.

Scot says he’s got an open mind but when he first saw the tracks he figured here’s another hoax.

“The closer I got and looked at the prints, the more I could see the detail and the movement in the foot. As a tracker you see how things move the weight and all that stuff. The complexity of the footprint made me go whoa!” he says.

What really impressed Scot was the force of the Bigfoot print which rippled the ground around it. Scot’s footprint next to it hardly moved the earth.

“If it’s a hoax, somebody really did a good job, if it’s not, then there’s a big creature that lives among us,” says Woodland.

All the prints appear to be from one animal walking slowly but with a stride twice that of a human.

“We measured from heel of the left foot to heel of left foot, 56 inches,” says Scott.
Plumas National Forest Bigfoot TrackThe footprint was gigantic. It was seven-and-a-half inches wide. The tape measure shows the impression is nearly double the length of an adult human foot.
Plumas National Forest Bigfoot TrackFrom a distant picture of a possible big foot, to plaster impressions of some very big feet. Compare them with the plaster cast Chuck Padigo made and you’ll see the same basic shape, same size. Almost square toes with little or no arching.

If there is a big foot living in the woods, it wouldn’t be the first time somebody has reported the evidence. CBS13 checked the records over the past decade.

In both 1997 and 1998, a science researcher found possible Bigfoot tracks and feces in the same Plumas Forest Area.

And again in 1998, a veteran forest service employee found footprints fourteen inches long by six inches wide.

CBS13 checked with residents of the small towns near where Michelle and Chuck found their footprints. Store owner Peggy Pope says she’s a believer.

“I’ve never heard of anybody up here saying they’ve seen one, or any evidence? Or any evidence, but I believe there is such a thing,” says Pope.

Other locals say they have either heard or smelled what might be a Bigfoot, but they also tell of some big bears living in these woods.

But pictures of bear paws, while certainly very large, clearly show big claws.

The footprints Chuck and Michelle found show no sign of any claws, just clean imprints of five toes.

The Padigos found the footprints four months ago and didn’t publicize it until now.

They do not seem to seek notoriety and appear to be genuinely and deeply affected by the incident but still, we had to ask if they were playing a hoax on us.

“No sir, I wouldn’t do that, I’m not that smart, I couldn’t make something like that,” says Chuck.

Photos and measurements of those big footprints have been sent to a renowned scientist who is researching Bigfoot sightings. No word yet on whether he thinks those prints are made by man or by a lot bigger and more secretive creature.John Iander

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.

32 Responses to “Norcal Bigfoot Tracks Found”

  1. greywolf responds:

    I am no expert, but I thought Ray Wallace passed on. Those pictures look like fake feet.

  2. bill green responds:

    hey everyone this definetly a very interesting new article & tv news segment of sasquatch footprints found by 2 people in ca forests which does wonderful histery of sasquatch activity. i hope researchers here get to talk the people who found they footprints. thanks bill 🙂 please keep me posted. maybe even talk to the reporter who covered this great footprints report if you all want too.

  3. maxsideburn responds:

    It’s great to hear about a sighting near Alexandria, LA! In fact my family is from Avoyelles parish, which is right under Rapides parish, where Alexandria is located. All my life I’ve grown up with stories of bigfoot encounters. My father saw one when hunting, my aunt saw eyes about 8 feet up in the trees one night driving home down their little dirt road, and probably the best one though was when my grandma said she heard something outside one night on the porch and opened the curtains only to see something staring back at her. She said it howled and took off, as if it was just as startled. It ran very fast through the yard and jumped a 4 foot fence like it was nothing. My grandpa collected long, orange-brown hair that stank awfully from the fence the next morning, in fact he still had it when I was very young. I really, really wish I knew what happened to it.

    I’m supposed to be going to my dad’s this weekend and I’m going to be bringing my little audio recorder. I’m going to sit down with him and get him to recite those stories again. I’ll send them to Loren to post once I have all of the stories written down.

    Anyway sorry to blog-jack, but this is the first time I’ve ever heard of a Louisiana bigfoot sighting on the internet.

  4. things-in-the-woods responds:

    My first reaction was fake.

    But who knows, I’ve never seen a bigfoot’s foot.

    In fact, the more I look at it the less fake it’s looking.

    But who knows, I’ve never seen a bigfoot’s foot.

    I’m really starting to get DWA’s point- enough of the footprints, they don’t get us anywhere (in themselves).

  5. Questor responds:

    maxsideburn said, “…but this is the first time I’ve ever heard of a Louisiana bigfoot sighting on the internet.”

    Hey max, go to for quite a few Louisiana sighting reports.

  6. DWA responds:


    Exactly. I can tell you that a pic of a sas looks like a human in a suit to me.

    But until we’ve documented the existence of the sas, we don’t have a square-one start – other than what we’ve seen, all of which could be fake for all we know – what a sas print, a real one, looks like.

    We NEED A REAL ONE. And you need to KNOW a real sas made it or you don’t have a real one, as science rightly defines such, yet. I really don’t like to overstress this point, but I feel the need every time I see a post that says “looks fake.” It’s fingernails on a chalkboard when there’s no “real” yet.

    That said, this seems to be attracting something other than the standard snicker. This apparently impressed a professional tracker, something I’m not.

    I’m willing to wait until Craig hears more. 😉 If there turns out to be more to this, well shut mah mouth! the tracks did their job.

    As a pointer, not as proof.


    from what I hear there are small towns down Ark-La-Tex-Oma way where if you haven’t seen a sasquatch, either YOU’RE the weirdo or you just need to switch colognes. Sounds like you’re from one of those towns. I can imagine your granddad tossing the bigfoot hair, figuring he’d just find more next week. Or coming back from a, heh heh, business trip to a secret Government installation with a story that every year sounds less and less likely and more and more like a cover 😀 ….

  7. MBFH responds:

    Interesting stuff. I’d be interested to know where the footprints started and finished: about 36 prints over 100 yards. Was it a softer surface that lead to the prints appearing or did they just appear? Did anyone try and follow them futher?

    As things_in_the_woods says, the footprints don’t get us anywhere, unless I suppose someone tries to track them.

  8. MBFH responds:

    Just read it more thoroughly following DWA’s comments – a tracker was involved. Did he try following them?

  9. dbard responds:

    IMHO tracks with details such as dermal ridges would be very difficult, if not impossible, to fake. If it’s good enough for Jimmy Chilcutt, it’s good enough for me.

  10. swnoel responds:

    Yep… those are foot prints all right.

    Let’s guess… I’d say not a hoax , they look like real foot prints to me.

    Yep… made by someone on 2 feet…

    Yep… I agree they’re foot prints allright… wait a minute… I said that already.

  11. kittenz responds:

    They just do not look like real footprints to me.

    For one thing, the toes prints do not look right. They are just sort of straight across the front; they don’t look natural. When a person walks, their weight comes down first on the heel, rolls forward along the outer edge of the foot to the ball, which acts as a pivot point to then push off from the toes. The action of that weight shift is obvious in humans’ bare footprints. Now granted, Bigfoot would be a lot bigger than humans. But if they are actually bipedal and walking at stride they would have a similar pattern of weight distribution over the stride, just on a larger scale.

    These prints do not look like that. They look like someone slapped a big rigid block down, pushed off from it and then slapped down another.

    The tracker who viewed the tracks said that he did see convincing weight distribution in the tracks, so I guess he saw more than I can see in them. But, going by what I see in these photos and the film, they look fake.

  12. kittenz responds:

    And then there’s the four-month wait to report the tracks. Why didn’t they report them right away so that experts could go examine them first-hand?

    I certainly don’t claim to be an expert tracker, but these look fake to me, and I think it’s mighty fishy that they waited so long to report the tracks. If they really thought they had found authentic Bigfoot tracks, why wait four months to send the photos and casts to an “expert”? Why not tell the expert right away so that he or she could examine the tracks directly and not second-hand?

  13. dogu4 responds:

    Y’know the tone of the report was something a little better than what I sometimes think we get for news coverage. I appreciated the fact that they didn’t focus on some bizarre aspect of it or make it a case of high wackiness and instead treated the witnesses and the report itself as somewhat-serious news occurrence and that, in the long run, helps to diminish the long-standing cliche’ of the crazy rustic. The newsfolks should be commended on that.

    None the less, I’m a little skeptical about the report too, but your observations bring to my mind the question of what a real bigfoot track is supposed to look like, and that still eludes me. On one hand I kinda expect it to reflect the movement as it does in human feet, but the BF isn’t just a big human foot and Meldrum’s description of how it functions seems to mean that the weight transfer is more evenly and passively distributed (kinda like an elephant’s cushioning foot) where humans’ transference along their arched foot is kind of like a spring, which is how the arch functions mechanically, or so it seems. So, would a big cushioned foot like Meldrum conjectures, really leave a deep footprint in the dirt along a roadway that would look like these? I hope we’ll see a little more on it soon.

  14. mrbf2006 responds:

    The more I look at those photos of those tracks, the more they scream out to me “hoax!” because the toes are straight across, which is wrong. The human foot has slanted toes, and so do most sasquatch tracks, like the cast of the one I have hanging on my wall.

  15. swnoel responds:

    Kittenz…. I didn’t say they were prints of a real foot.

    Ya never know… maybe they go back on horse back with rented 16mm Kodak and film 53 seconds of this mystical beast…

    What a minute… someone else already did this?

    Never mind…

  16. Artemis responds:

    That first picture looks like someone punched the ground with their fist. Hoax?

  17. ShefZ28 responds:

    The prints look sketchy… the toes look too defined. Buuut, I know if I were forging prints, I would make the foot look like a big human foot. I would probably photocopy my foot and just enlarge it for the pattern… the toes are not varied in size like a humans, so they look more real than I would have been able to hoax.

  18. rifleman responds:

    They just don’t look real.

  19. DWA responds:


    You say “These prints…look like someone slapped a big rigid block down, pushed off from it and then slapped down another. ”

    I think that speculation about the sas’s stride is that it pretty much does exactly that. The kind of motion you’re talking about presumes a foot with an arch, which most educated speculation presumes the sasquatch doesn’t have.

    As to the four-month wait: that’s standard with the sas. Remember: if you’ve seen one, you’re crazy. Yes, THAT’S crazy. But it’s also true, as far as most people are concerned. By the standards of the genre, this was reported as soon as they found them. Many people wait 20 – or more – YEARS.

    Given that the tracker’s report of his findings makes him crazy too…in the case of the sas, delay is normal. I don’t think a thing of it. Again. WHY would they report it at all? What are they gonna get from it other than a newspaper article and people thinking they’re crazy?

    People immersed in crypto news tend to forget that to the vast majority of Americans:

    1. Bigfoot is that guy who flies around with Elvis; and

    2. Some guy shot a movie of him; and

    3. They totally debunked it on that TV show a few years back. (They didn’t even see “that show;” but they “know” this.)

    Imagine coming across something you KNOW doesn’t exist. That’s most people and the sasquatch.

  20. Leto responds:

    DNA tests can be carried out on the feces to determine which creature produced them.

  21. swnoel responds:

    DNA can only determine the origin of the feces if a sample of DNA is available to compare.

    Didn’t know there was a sample of a sasquashes DNA around for comparision or am I missing something?

  22. kittenz responds:

    DNA testing can exclude known animals. That would not prove what a fecal sample from an unknown animals IS, but it would rule out known animals.

    I do think that there may be a similarity to the structure of an elephant’s foot in the structure of a Sasquatch foot, but elephants are quadrupeds and if Sas are bipeds their stride would be more similar to another biped. Even in humans with flat feet and very little arch, there is a smooth transfer of weight from back to front in a normal stride. In fact DWA, that IS a good point. I’d like to see a comparison of the tracks to those of a large man with flat feet.

    As I said, I’m not a tracking expert, and I’m looking at photos, not at the actual prints. I could very well be mistaken. It still begs the question: why wait four months? Why not let an expert examine the prints themselves? Even if the people had no idea that there are people seriously studying Bigfoot, a quick google search would turn up names of people who would tear their toenails off to get to a site where clear fresh tacks had been found.

  23. dogu4 responds:

    When I compared BF feet to elephantine feet I was referring to their functionality not their structure per se. Ancestors of elephants, prior to their acheiving their renown size, did not need their feet to absorb and cushion their great bulk, and likewise, the human foot were it to adapt to the great bulk of the reported size of the BF, would find the graceful arches of our feet less than ideal. I seem to recall a close reading of Meldrum’s analysis also addresses how the presumed arch-less structure of the foot would also lend itself to the distinctive in-line, toes-forward pattern that the feet make while transporting the owners considerable mass over flat ground.
    But I would love to see a sample of a human tracks from someone with severe fallen arches in contrast to someone who’s arches are still within their design specs.

  24. mystery_man responds:

    Well a lot of what I wanted to say has been said. As DWA and some others have pointed out, it is really hard to make any assertions about what a Bigfoot track should really look like without a definitive holotype. Bigfoot tracks may be able to lead us in the direction of more compelling evidence, but in the end, we can only guess what their feet are supposed to look like and hope we are accurate in our pronouncements of “fake”. I do not personally find the lack of arches to be totally strange. As Dogu4 said, something of this kind of mass may have developed flatter feet as the arches may not be ideal to them. Sure bipedal creatures as we know them, within our own size range, have typically arched feet, but we are dealing with a creature of much more impressive mass, so who knows? Heck, some Bigfoot may even have more arched feet than others just like with people. What about comparisons with early human ancestors such as Giganto? Did they have flat feet or arches? Finding a precedent for it in the fossil record may alleviate people’s doubts as to whether Bigfoot could have archless feet.

  25. graybear responds:

    Several people have asked for comparison between BF tracks and fossil feet. Let’s not forget that feet are very rarely fossilized, as they are composed of numerous small bones which are usually lost before the fossilization process can be completed. Same goes for hands. In the case of Gigantopithecus blacki, the largest and latest of the two Giganto species, the fossil remains consist of a few mandibles and fewer than two thousand teeth. Not a lot of foot information there. Most scientists, in fact, consider that Giganto was a quadraped, knuckle-walking like the modern great apes.

    I’ve seen some analyses on the possible mechanics of the feet of a biped of BF’s size. They indicate that the heel would be longer than in humans with the ankle more centrally located. This would bring the weight down more solidly on the foot, with a more even weight distribution than in humans, leading to much less roll as the foot came in contact with the ground. So these footprints might look more like a stamped impression than a human print. In fact, Patty looks to me as if she were stamping her feet as she moves up the wash in the Patterson film. Maybe this is just the animal’s normal method of locomotion.

    But we won’t know until we find one. As has been said before; we need a bench mark.

  26. Artemis responds:

    What I think Leto’s trying to say is they could test the feces and see if it matches with an animal that we know exists. If it comes back inconclusive or species unknown or something we may be dealing with a sasquatch or something.

    But I doubt it’s an actual sasquatch.

  27. DWA responds:

    Kittenz: you say “It still begs the question: why wait four months? Why not let an expert examine the prints themselves?”

    I saw what could possibly have been sas tracks in Northern CA over 20 years ago. I’ve told almost no one. (My girlfriend, whom I later married, maybe to shut her up, was with me. I might have told one or two other people, and definitely no one whose reaction I was not pretty certain of before I talked.) If I actually saw a sas tomorrow, I might file a sighting report, but I probably would do everything I could to make sure no one I knew found out anything about it. If another person were with me and didn’t appear to notice anything unusual, he would persist in his ignorance, and I in mine about whether or not he was keeping mum on what he had seen, because I would not say a thing to him. I sure as hell would not let my thoughts about this animal appear in any forum that could be directly attached to my name.

    THAT’s why. The world isn’t ready. That’s why. It seems stupid that you can’t talk about this. Which makes it only one of many things about us which are, well, pretty stupid.

    I’m grateful for the people who are brave enough to challenge the stupidity of the masses on this topic. But my life is too nice the way it is for me to be one of them just yet.

  28. mystery_man responds:

    Graybear, good point on the fossil feet. Upon thinking about it, I realized that you are indeed right and that not only are fossilized feet hard to come by, but Giganto is indeed thought by some to have been a somewhat quadrapedal creature which would make comparisons to its foot inaccurate since we are obviously dealing with a bipedal creature with Bigfoot. Interesting info on the mechanics of a cbiped of Bigfoots size but was this information calculated using humans as a benchmark? If that is the case, it is still a lot of speculation, but I suppose it is a good start.

  29. kittenz responds:


    I do see your point. But if that is the case, why break the story at all? It just does not fit.

  30. kittenz responds:


    I understand your speculation that the feet may have weight-distributing properties different from human feet, and your mention of elephant feet too. In fact I have brought up similar ideas in another thread. I agree, Bigfoot, if they are the size that is popularly attributed to them, must have a foot structure, and probably a gait, somewhat different from humans, or from any other known animal for that matter.

  31. DWA responds:


    Oh, it fits perfectly. It’s routine.

    This is another area in which reading too many sighting reports comes in real handy. 😀

    People who aren’t steeped in crypto know the sas can’t exist. It’s impossible. Seeing one certifies mental illness. So seeing one, or seeing powerful evidence of one’s presence, for many people, is an impossible event to either process properly or deal with with other people. (One sighting report describes one of the witnesses telling the others that they didn’t see a thing – and then instantly starting to pray aloud, with another of the witnesses joining right in.) Folks report sightings ten to forty YEARS after they had them. They bury it. They deny it. Maybe life makes it go away for a while. Then it comes back and keeps coming back. People talk about seeing a TV show or a website and having a Eureka! moment. Old experiences, now validated, come back with such crystal clarity that they have to do SOMETHING.

    It sounds as if they brought back the tracker pretty quickly. (And either they were incredibly naive, or they knew this guy, or they were incredibly naive AND found a guy who’s been wondering lately whether there might not be something to this noise.) Then everybody had that wait a minute we’re NUTS moment…and spent a while, and I bet a long while, talking about it. (“Hey, you hear our expert tracker thinks he found a Bigfoot? Sounds like somebody’s slippin’ here, don’ it?”)

    Not saying anything about the validity of this find, mind you. But.

    Four months is nothing in this field. 😀

  32. scout242 responds:

    Wet sand? And only that deep? Not to mention that they look “flat”, that is too evenly distributed.

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