Sasquatch With a Shovel?

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on December 15th, 2006

In Loren’s post “New Theory: Bigfoot Was "Cradleboarded"?”

WVBIG_2006 made a comment and quoted the following from Kathy Strain:

“It wouldn’t make any sense to me that Patty (a hair covered yet naked human as defined by M.K.) would have the luxury to bind her children’s heads but not the talent to make clothes (or shoes or weapons, etc.).”

WVBIG_2006 stated:

That’s one reason why I just can’t buy into the theory that Bigfoot bury their dead. They are sophisticated enough to make shovels to dig graves, but have to throw rocks, nuts, etc. at people they feel threatened by?

It just doesn’t make sense to me.

My first thought was rather flippant, and I was going to comment, "Bigfoot doesn’t need a shovel, he would just use his digging stick!"

OK, that was my attempt at humor today. But then I got to thinking about the fact that Bigfoot would not need a shovel, or any other digging tool necessarily.

Many animals dig without any tools.

To further that point, I decided to bring up a rather well-known, at least to Bigfoot researchers, Bigfoot sighting that took place the same year that Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin shot their film footage that fateful day, October 20th, 1967.

John Green wrote the following in his book On the Track of the Sasquatch.

The Glen Thomas Sighting

I have spent only one day out in the brush in Oregon as compared to months in California and British Columbia, but I rate that day as the most productive I have ever spent. The man who made it possible refuses to let his name be made public (note: the man was later publicly identified as Glen Thomas), but he did put his story on tape, as follows:

"I was supposed to be watching a catskinner as he was fire trailing, but it was awful cold, and I walked a mile or so down the trail, because he had no need of anyone at that time, and I thought I’d warm up and see the country. Up where he was, it was a cold east wind blowing; a little further down it was a west wind coming in. It was late fall, the last weekend in deer season I think, in 1967.

"It was a mountain trail – they have several of them up there – footpaths, and for horses. The elevation was about between four and five thousand feet. I came out lower down, into the fog, before I saw anything, and the fog was freezing on the trees because it was so cold, but if the wind would blow, the fog would break, and fall off. That made it kind of noisy, it sounded like walking.

Glen Thomas Bigfoot Site

Click on image for a larger version. Image is used with the permission of the photographer, Joe Beelart.

1967 Glen Thomas site – Burnt Granite Mountain July 1999
Mt. Jefferson in the background.

"I came around a bend – well, first I noticed some rocks that were turned over. All the other rocks were wet, because of the fog, but these rocks were dry. Then I looked up, about forty or fifty feet, up on a ridge of rock, and I saw these animals there – looked like human or just about. Large male; the female wasn’t so large; and a small baby – well, not really small. It was moving with them. It was standing up, mostly. The two older ones were squatting down and sort of bending, as they picked up rocks and smelled them. They were kind of careful. They moved on for a few minutes, and then finally the male found possibly what he was looking for and dug real fast down into the rocks, which were large boulders – not the round-type of rocks, but the flat, sharp kind.

"I could not explain why these rocks were there; there hadn’t been a slide or anything. They were on top of the ridge, so they wouldn’t have come down from anywhere. They are loose, quite a few holes underneath them, and they are as if they had been broken up – definitely not the round river-type rock. But they (the animals) would pick them up, and, after they smelled them, they would lay them down, on top of each other. They didn’t just lay them back where they had picked them up, they stacked them up, in piles. And when the male found what he was looking for, he really made the rocks fly. The big rocks weighed 50, 60, or even possible 100 pounds; he just jerked them out with his hand. He didn’t seem to take any precautions for his safety. Later on I looked, and there was some rock there that could have fallen on him, but he wasn’t concerned.

"He brought out what appeared to be a grass nest. Possibly some stored hay that small rodents had stored there. He dug through that, and brought out the rodents. It seems they ate them. The rodents appeared to be in hibernation, or asleep, or something. There were about 6 or 8 rodents. The small animal, I noticed, only got one, but the others got 2 or 3 apiece.

"But about that time they became aware of my presence. And well, just became alert. I was along side of this trail that follows the ridge. I didn’t remember getting there, but I was squatting down beside a small tree when I became aware of where I was. As soon as they realized I was there, they suddenly began to move. Real quiet, behind some low-hanging limbs on a tree there. I didn’t see them again after that.

"I tried to follow their tracks in the direction I thought they would have to go, but I couldn’t find any, although there was frost there. But the next day I found 2 tracks, I heel print, and the front part of the foot, the toes, but they were in a different direction – the direction from which I had come – and I never did get to connect them up with exactly which direction they had gone or know anything about them.

"The footprints, I would say, but there wasn’t enough of the track to tell. They were possibly 5 inches wide, I don’t know, at the widest point. I don’t think they could have been 6. I didn’t know if it was one of the animals I had seen that had made the footprints.

"I saw the toe print as it came out of the old landing. I saw the heel print as it went in. The heel print gave me the impression that the heel protruded. The tracks were in dirt. It was just as if you had a level piece and scooped it out for about 2 feet deep, and it would cave in some. It (the animal) had stepped down into that and left a heel print, and as it stepped out on the other side you could see the toe print.

"When I left the catskinner, he was on Low Creek, but I had walked to Jim’s Meadows, possible a mile or more. I saw the footprints between where the catskinner was, and where I had seen the other animals.

"After the animals disappeared I watched and looked for a few minutes and then decided I didn’t want to go in that direction. So I just headed back. I didn’t tell the catskinner about seeing them. I didn’t tell anybody about it… until _______ asked me to ask among my crews – maybe some of them had seen them. That was the only time I had even mentioned it to any of the fellows out there, because I didn’t want anyone to think I was a nut or something or other.

"The only time I saw their faces was when they became alert. They gave me an impression of having a face a little like a cat, without the ears. I couldn’t remember seeing the ea
rs. It seemed like the nose was much flatter – it didn’t stick out like a human’s. The upper lip was very short, and seemed very thin. I couldn’t remember that it had a chin, like a human has. So somehow or other, I felt that it was a face more like a cat than a human.

"The male was darker than the female, a dirty brown, where the female was a buckskin or fawn-colored animal. The male had much longer hair on shoulder, head, and neck, and hung in strings, like you see it on an Angora goat. He was much heavier in the shoulders than the female. From just above the hips, the male got larger; he had a very wide "small" of the back. From there on up, he just got bigger and bigger. They had very rounded or stooped shoulders. The head was set lower on the shoulders than on a human. They don’t seem to have the neck "stand up" as we do.

"Most of the time they were not standing, but were squatting down and leaning forward to pick up the rocks. I didn’t see them stand actually erect until they became alert that I was there. I didn’t see them walk, as such. The only movement I saw was when they made a quick, short dash to get behind the limbs of the trees. I saw them move alright, but in a humped-up, stooped-over position, just moving across the rocks. But they were upright when they made that quick dash at the end. It seemed to me that the mother picked the baby up on her lap and ran holding the baby in front of her, possibly right below the breast, and her breasts hung real low, much lower than on a human.

"I couldn’t say how thick through the body these animals were, but they were very heavy-set -particularly thick and heavy at the small of the back, and on up through the ribs. I think the male was over 6 feet tall, but I’m an awful poor judge of height and weight or anything. I didn’t think the female was a tall as the male, in fact I think she came possibly up to his shoulder, but I saw them standing up so little, I didn’t know, but they were much larger than a human, much bulkier. The baby didn’t come up to the mother’s hips actually, I don’t think, but I don’t remember for sure. The first time I saw them standing up was as the male stepped out of the hole he dug with the grass but it was only a very short while until they took off. I didn’t see them after that.

(Q. How did they eat?) "They ate by just taking it in their hand and eating it as one of us would if we were eating a banana. They ate it skin, feathers, and all-just bit it in two, and as they would bite part of it well then just cram the other right on in. The little one though, he had a little more difficulty, because he didn’t have quite enough room for all of it, where the older ones did. It wasn’t like a human would band the food to the baby, he had to get his–he was scratching through the grass that they bad and got it himself, and the female did the same thing. They gave you the impression in that way of not taking care of the baby, like people would. I’ve been wondering now if that group lived together as a family, and I hope to go back and look into it deeper.

(Q. Did you form any impression of the proportions of, say, the legs in relation to the rest of the height? Would they be like a long-legged man, or short-legged?) "I don’t know; I couldn’t say for sure; but the arms were such that when they squat down they have to bend forward to pick up anything-their arms are not long enough to reach. This one that was digging just seemed to go right on down. I didn’t remember seeing him get up, but as he was down here, he was just digging and kept going on down, and … well, at that time I couldn’t see exactly where he was, because I was down, and they were up a little bit on the side of this rock, which kind of levels off some, and he went down, and so I couldn’t see exactly what he was doing in there, but I did see when he came out. At that time I was a little bit nervous…. I’m not sure, now, about half of it-seemed like it was a bad dream for a while. I just couldn’t believe it was really happening. It just couldn’t be, but it is.

(Q. Did you notice the hands at all?) "I noticed that it had hands; I did not notice if it had thumbs. I couldn’t tell from the way it worked-it didn’t seem to use the thumb. And I didn’t see any ears. I didn’t see any knees projecting when it squatted. They were in an awkward position because of the rocks, and they couldn’t just squat down like we would on a floor. They would be on different levels; and off too far to be comfortable. That’s as close as I could explain it.

"When they went from place to place they would shift in position, according to the terrain. The male, well, actually both of them, seemed to be moving in a certain direction, possibly from tracing the small rodents. I thought possibly it was the scent left by the rodents coming up through the rocks, because it was not a runway that they could have been picking, because they were just picking the rocks up anyplace, and as they picked it up, they’d turn it over and smell it, and then lay it on the stack. They left it very definitely in a pile. They would leave anywhere from three to fifteen or twenty in one pile, as they would reach back, and then, oh, six to eight feet farther, they would leave another pile-start laying them in another."

With Rene and my daughter Kathryn and son Jim, I went with this man last July to the spot where he had seen the three creatures. We found the piles of rocks to which he referred, not only at the spot be showed us, but on almost every other area of broken rock we found in two hours of scrambling around on the mountain. They were obviously piles manufactured by something or someone, the rock could not have rested that way naturally, and there were dozens of them.

The hole he saw the male Sasquatch dig was about five feet deep and almost as steep sided as a well. No bear or anything else without hands could have lifted out the rocks. A man could undoubtedly figure out a way to do it if he had any reason to take the trouble, but in this case the story had only come out as the result of an enquiry from someone else who had seen footprints in the snow in January of this year, and there was no reason to expect that anyone would be coming to look over the site.

From On the Track of the Sasquatch, Copyright © 1973, John Green. Text used with John Green’s written permission.

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.

24 Responses to “Sasquatch With a Shovel?”

  1. shovethenos responds:

    Great account. And it makes sense too – rodents are a huge mass of protein in the ecosystem. It’s probably also a seasonal routine – get them when they’re clustered and drowsy from hibernating. (or at least dormant) The rocks above their dens probably have a pretty strong urine and musk smell, which was likely what they were checking for. Very interesting.

  2. Bigfoot2007 responds:

    That was a great read. A very absorbing Bigfoot sighting account.

  3. vet72 responds:

    An engrossing account! Part of it is in the Bigfoot Casebook Updated: Sightings and Encounters From 1818 to 2004. I thought it sounded familiar.

  4. a man called jim responds:

    we human’s throw rocks and bombs at eachother..and we are supposed to inteligent..lets face facts here that knowone really know’s if the sasquatch is inteligent or not!!

  5. Selrach responds:

    Very interesting and very detailed account. As noted before this helps to account for a foodsource in the winter months, also indicates the creature may be an Omnivore.

    Plenty of space to hide in and more than enough food.

  6. Dolouren responds:

    It’s a great account! I think to live in such environment we must accept that the Sasquatch is an intelligent creature, because it can be related with us humans and from that a think it must, no it IS intelligent! That’s why
    we can’t catch any of them.

  7. kittenz responds:

    I don’t know… I wonder how far he was from the animals? Because it sort of sounds like it could have been bears; bears use their front paws like hands to turn over rocks too.

    I’m not saying it WAS bears or WASN’T Bigfoot. I’d just like to know more about the circumstances of the sighting. From the description and the answers he gave, it does not sound like he was close enough to really be able to distinguish details.

  8. bill green responds:

    hey craig good morning wow very informative article about sasquatch. thanks bill

  9. joe levit responds:


    This clearly was not a bear sighting, whatever it was. The man would have said so had he seen bears. Besides, even a grizzly cannot create a five foot hole going down into the ground with steep sides like a well. Any hole a bear would dig of that depth would necessarily be much wider.

  10. Joe Beelart responds:

    Nice write-up. Good job.

    In some way, a tape recording of Glen Thomas telling this story in “Millie’s” barbershop, Estacada, Oregon found it’s way to Cliff Olson. It recounts the story almost as you wrote it. I have the recording on loan to get a better copy made.

    Also, in private correspondence, John Green once told me that he and Rene dropped in on Glen one Friday evening. They wanted to come somewhat unannounced. Glen took them to the site the next day.

    On site, Cliff and I carefully went over Thomas’ words. The tree he probably stood behind is now cut down, but the location of the stump is probably the only place he could have stood and watched in detail without being seen.

    The hole is maintained somewhat by something. After the Scotts Mill earthquake, a large rock slid into it. It was removed some months later. Two to three men would have a hard time moving the rock. In 2006, two large rocks slid into the pit, probably from ice melt on the edges.

    They were still there when I checked in August. I’ll check again in July when I can walk in again.

    Finally, the road in to the site area has deteriorated substantially. Beware.

    Joe Beelart
    West Linn, Oregon

  11. sadisticgreen responds:

    I think this is one of the most detailed accounts I’ve ever read! It’s fascinating. It sounds as if he watched them for some time too which suggests to me that there is less chance of him mistaking a group of bears for a sasquatch family. The sceptical voice in my head is unusually silent after reading this account and the true believer is throwing a party!

  12. Kathy Strain responds:

    That is a great account! And, it is important to note that digging a 5 foot hole to catch some rodents wouldn’t have been necessary if bigfoot had tools or weapons (Native Americans used traps, etc.).

  13. silvereagle responds:

    Intelligent? The people who actually contact the sassys, and certainly do not post to the internet, know all to well that they are quite intelligent. High intelligence goes hand in hand with being people. Hard to separate the two. Which it the description that M. K. Davis should have used instead of “human”, and he would have been correct.

  14. mystery_man responds:

    Whether this was the real deal or not, it is a very compelling account and I found myself quite absorbed in this as I read it. What is interesting for me is the the fact that it is detailed, but not overly so. He flatly admits that he could not be sure of the size of them or whether they had thumbs or not. For some reason, this lends it more credibility for me. In this kind of awe inspiring situation, the layman is not going to be able to accurately remember every small detail of the encounter so the fact that he is not giving too much detail makes it a bit easier to entertain the possibility of this sighting. Fascinating stuff about the digging for rodents, the sniffing of the rocks, and the way they treated the baby. If this is a real account, it gives some very interesting insights into possible sasquatch behavior.

  15. mystery_man responds:

    By the way, this site sounds like a perfect candidate for some motion activated game cameras or a stakeout.

  16. satarina responds:

    “They ate it skin, feathers, and all-just bit it in two, and as they would bite part of it well then just cram the other right on in.”

    feathers? on rodents? did i miss something?

  17. catvmex responds:

    Very interesting. I’d think that, if the fellow was close enough to describe this much detail, he would be able to tell whether he was looking at bears, or not. But anyway…

    FYI: There is a report on BFRO’s website (#1024, State of Kentucky) that tells of two young guys seeing a bigfoot using stick(s) to dig with. Thought it goes along with discussion of MK’s “findings”.

    Craig, thanks for the effort.

  18. mystery_man responds:

    Satarina, I noticed that inconsistency too. Maybe it is a new type of winged rodent! Two cryptids in one sighting! Lol

  19. rayrich responds:

    Im sure he meant fur instead of feathers and the mistake in wording seem to give the account more validity in my view.

  20. Trent Mullen responds:

    Its interesting to me that this was a sighting of three Bigfeet, or 2 Bigfeet and 1 Littlefoot. However you want to say it, Patterson and Gimlin were investigating a report of 3 different size tracks when they filmed that footage of the hairy human with the camping shovel everyone is talking about. Anyway just thought I would bring that up. I havent researched this sighting enough to know how far from Pattersons location it was. Was it in California? Could it be the same Bigfoot family that left the tracks that Patterson and Gimlin were investigating? Wouldnt that be interesting……I better start researching right now. Enjoyed reading this one. Sounds like he watched these animals for a long time. Alot longer that most sightings last.

  21. ilexoak responds:

    I think the feathers reference sounds more like a country way of saying, “they ate in a big hurry” or they “didn’t bother to skin a cook the meal”.

    Craig, if i’m seeing your main point, these BF would easily be able to dig large deep holes relatively quickly. So, the possibility of them burying their dead is very real even if they are extremely limited in tool usage.

    My 60lb dogs (pitbull/husky mix) can dig a hole a foot deep in hard clay in a few minutes. 800lb sas make a 5’X10’X6′ hole in regular dirt without tools in 2 hours- piece of cake!


  22. twblack responds:

    I have only one question? A rodent with feathers? The rest of the story seems very good.

  23. MrInspector responds:

    A note on bears. The Brown Bear, also called grizzly, is built as a mammalian backhoe. A brown could easily have dug a deep hole and moved these rocks. However, bears don’t exist in family units such as this, and would never stack the stones in this manner. There is no possible way to have mistaken a bear for this female with large low-hanging breasts.
    Interesting that he said they were cat-like in the face.

  24. mystery_man responds:

    The description of having a cat-like face is very odd. I’ve heard sasquatch described many ways, but never as cat-like. Curious.

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