Women Bigfooters Do Better Fieldwork?

Posted by: Loren Coleman on May 17th, 2007

Coast to Coast AM Loren Coleman

Cartoonist Ted Bastien’s graphic view captures my Coast to Coast AM with George Noory appearances, including ones such as last night’s discussion of black panthers, Sasquatch research, and Bigfoot history.

One of the interesting side talks George and I had on his show was about how women – a la’ Jane Goodall – need support to live in pairs for six months or more in the woods, doing Bigfoot research. The non-threatening approach of the great apes and Sasquatch to women might be an overlooked key to future fieldwork.

Maine Bigfoot

What do you think? Might women actually be able to get closer to Bigfoot, or Bigfoot wish to get closer to that human gender? Might male Bigfoot pick up the odor of male humans miles away, and wish go the other way?

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.

21 Responses to “Women Bigfooters Do Better Fieldwork?”

  1. bill green responds:

    hey loren this definetly a very interesting about women sasquatch researchers. i realy like those above bigfoot cartoons. thanks bill. women are very inportant in sasquatch research as much men are definetly indeed.

  2. UKCryptid responds:


    Anyway, I was about to completely throw that out of the window but I guess it’s perfectly possible in some way. As the late and great Steve Irwin pointed out many times, his wife Terri was always the distraction for adult female crocs while Steve got the eggs from the nest. I know crocs are quite a different animal from our alleged bipedal cousins but the principal could well be the same. He used to say that the croc would go to attack him far more than Terri, if at all. Can’t see why it wouldn’t work for other animals in some way.

  3. Ole Bub responds:

    Good morning Cryptos….

    I know several female researchers…and am convinced some female researchers…especially those well versed in fieldcraft are much more apt to document the big folks than many male researchers.

    A tip to those in the field….get the best digital camera with optical zoom you can afford and learn how to use it. Study your field photos very carefully before deleting them…JMHO

    Autumn Williams gave an excellent testimonial at a conference a few years ago, certainly worth review by those interested in the field…I happen to agree with her assessment.

    live and let live…

    ole bub and the dawgs

  4. mystery_man responds:

    I don’t know about this one. I think that men and women may have a different way of going about things sometimes, but it is the approach that matters in the end. I think Jane Goodall has the right dedication, mind set, and approach, so that is what I personally think led to her being a great researcher, not what gender she is. The same goes for Dianne Fossey with her gorillas. I think they would have been just as successful had they been men. Perhaps Bigfoot could possibly see women as more non threatening, but I am still hesitant to say that gender by itself has any considerable impact on the quality of the fieldwork. It is an interesting question, though.

  5. silvereagle responds:

    Although the Bigfoot appears to associate men with guns, because that’s how they handle the many explainable noises or situations that scare the pants off of him, the Bigfoot do not associate women with guns. The difficulty in finding women to do research, then comes down to finding the women who have the cajones to sit still in the dark forest while an 800 lbs hairy animal gives them the sniff test. Since most “researchers” still seem to think that they are animals instead of people, I get to use that scary term. Bigfoot however, react positively to kindness, non-hostile conversation and respect for them, no matter which gender it comes from. Since few homo sapiens recognize the full capabilities of the Bigfoot people, when man does make peaceful contact with them, the Bigfoot tend to develop emotional attachments to that person fairly quickly. The Bigfoot will then remain near the contact point for some time, in hopes of continuing the relationship on return visits by that person. So gender is not as an important factor as the human behavior is, for performing successful research on supernatural people, in my opinion. Oh, did I say supernatural? Must have been a slip of the tongue. Forget I said that. Put it completely out of your mind. Delete it from your hard drive.

  6. hiker11 responds:

    Hi, I would say male and female, have the same chance,to see a sasquatch, it just seems there is more males out in the woods than women roaming around.

  7. Jeremy_Wells responds:

    Why there might be some validity to the idea that differences in smell between the sexes could influence whether or not a BF would perceive a researcher as a threat, I think we want to be careful, while acknowledging the important roles women can and should play in field research, not to fall into a “king kong” type pattern of casting women as “objects” coveted by “the beast.”

    Yes, there are undoubtedly differences in smell between men and women that our limited senses aren’t able to pick up and that other animals probably can. Yes it is an area that, like other areas of bigfoot research (and wildlife research in general), deserves further scrutiny. But, as with any issue that involves sex, we must be careful that we don’t allow our social mores, traditions and expectations to color our conclusions.

    The idea of sex based olfactory differentiation should be looked at, but not without first acknowledging this “king kong” factor. I, for one, would hate to see a female researcher be involved in making the big discovery only to have all her hard work overshadowed by speculation about the role her sex played in “luring in” the bigfoot.

  8. Jeremy_Wells responds:


    Supernatural aspect aside (because, if they are supernatural, which I personally doubt, but if they are, we aren’t going to ever be able to “prove” their existence anyhow) your post raises that interesting “cultural” point.

    Is it the difference in the attitude and approach of women, the non-posturing approach, that chimps and other apes can somehow “pick-up on” as less threatening that have made some women more successful as primate researchers? Is it the purely biological difference in smell? Or is it something else entirely?

    Personally, I chalk it up to the perseverance and dedication of Fossey and Goodall as people, and not to any aspect of their femininity. But, I suppose, it is a fair question to ask, especially considering the fact that two of the best known contemporary primatologist have been women. (But I still find it funny that, were they men, this is a conversation we wouldn’t even be having. Their techniques in approaching the animals, in maintaining non-threatening postures, these would all be topics of conversation, but not their aroma or whether it was any innate aspect of their “masculinity” that made them successful.)

  9. Jeremy_Wells responds:

    This whole conversation so far has also been overlooking the fact that a significant portion of Bigfoot, if we are to believe they have a self-sustaining population of any sort, have to be female.

    How might female Bigfoot react differently toward women than male Bigfoot? As animals that seem to be more solitary than troop oriented, might they not see another female (and her potential offspring) as competitors for resources and act accordingly? And if female Bigfoot see females as potential competition, might they be intrigued by, and less threatened by, the smell of male humans? Is it significant, in any way then, that the subject of the Patterson-Gimlin footage was female and the filmers were male?

  10. greatanarch responds:

    They might get closer to Bigfoot than they like, depending just how near to the human species Bigfoot is, and how exogamous it feels.

    On digital cameras: I have a prejudice towards film. You are less likely to be accused of fraud if you can show a negative, and the information density on film is still significantly higher. Worth remembering that JPEG, the most common digital storage format, achieves its compression by throwing away fine detail. So unless you are going to stick your camera in Bigfoot’s face…

  11. DWA responds:

    Sure, let’s try it. Was beauty killed the beast, as they said of Fay Wray in “King Kong.”

    Okay, fine, I promise to stop now.

    But nothing else seems to have gotten scientific documentation yet. And more people in the field – of whichever gender – certainly won’t hurt.

    Open for volunteers.

    Oh vol-un-teeeeeeeee-eeeeeeeers….

  12. silvereagle responds:

    Jeremy, I believe that you underestimate the instantaneous evaluation of threat or no threat ability of the bigfoot. They likely can determine whether we are male or female, by mental telepathy as opposed to smell. Men might be thinking about having a gun handy and where to place the bullet. Women might be thinking about how sweet they are, and wondering what to cook them for dinner, should they drop in. Bigfoot do not see us as competitors. We are not in their league. I also do not recommend predicting Bigfoot behavior, based on what you may think you know about Gorillas.

  13. Kathy Strain responds:

    Yeah silvereagle, when I’m out bigfooting, that’s what I think about…how sweet a bigfoot is and what I’m going to cook them for dinner.

  14. Kathy Strain responds:

    (that was sarcasm in case anyone missed it)

  15. dontmean2prymate responds:

    Considering how many folks are somewhere inbetween, it isn’t exactly what sex the person is that would matter, but their approach. The moment anyone enters the forest, their breath and sweat will give away they haven’t been living on what’s at hand. Whether the gear is weaponry or photography, it all smells of the factory. If a man and woman were willing to go humbly into the wild and live similarly to what they are searching for, I’d bet on a female getting within proof-distance first, but the male might stay longer and get the proof. My own cultural bias stripped naked.

  16. Jeremy_Wells responds:


    I’ll play “devil’s advocate” for just half a second, ignore the fact that there is even less evidence for Bigfoot telepathy that there is scant physical evidence of their existence, and assume that, if they are real, BF can read our minds.

    You’re simplified analysis ignores the fact that many men (like myself) are out in the field without a sidearm of any sort when doing BF research.

    I’ve quibbled over this, and finally decided that I’m a “no-kill” proponent (not that I have anything against guns or hunting, just not something as rare and special as BF apparently are… especially if they could read my murderous thoughts), BUT I can guarantee you that there are women out there (like my step-mother for instance) who wouldn’t give a second thought to emptying a clip into a large, threatening critter.

    So, so much for mind reading and women thinking of how they are gonna get that cake baked before BF arrives for their big date. Any sexual difference in encounters obviously isn’t ALL about BF reading the minds of women and finding their thoughts “safer”.

    So then it comes back to a) pheromones or odors, or b) cultural differences in the way we teach MOST girls to confront conflict versus the way we teach MOST boys to confront conflict that translate into subtle body language clues/postures that these creatures interpret as either aggressive or non-threatening.

    Though I worry about the boxes it might potentially force researchers of any sex into, I will concede that option “a”, at the very least, deserves some extra scientific scrutiny. If it is option “b”, non-threatening postures are strategies any researcher, male or female, could learn and incorporate into their research.

    But honestly, in many ways this is putting the cart before the horse, so to speak. Before we can even begin thinking about what postures or smells the creature might find threatening or intriguing during long-term observation (a la Goodall or Fossey), we have to confirm the physical reality of this critter.

    Part of locating and confirming the existence of this animal might involve understanding, and learning to mask, those odors that are threatening. So that is something that might deserve further scrutiny at this early stage in the game (it is also relatable to strategies that hunters take when going after big game like elk or deer, in using unscented deodorants, cover scents, etc.).

    But, then again, if you’re right about the telepathic abilities of Bigfoot (something I’m not dismissing entirely out of hand because of the role of devil’s advocate I took up at the beginning of this post) all of this conversation, and any other about “how to catch a ‘squatch” on film, is for naught.

  17. silvereagle responds:

    Jeremy, From my own personal experiences in the field and in the company of women, the Bigfoot know the instant the women get out of the vehicle, and then tone down whatever noise they may have been making, dramatically. If you want a big noisy nightime display, then leave the women at home or at least don’t let them get out of the car. So that rules out odor, since the Bigfoot are ordinarily 70 yards out or so. If you need some protection, then bring the women along.

    Mental telepathy evidence is all around us, by virtue of the inability of game cameras to get any significant results. I just sold mine because it was chasing them out of the area.

    One little game I played one evening with two Bigfoot in the vicinity of 50 to 70 yards out, was to ask them to run at us for 10 steps when the people that I was with, get out of the vehicle. About 5 minutes later, the people did finally get brave enough to get out of the vehicle. Then, both Bigfoot ran at us and stopped. One person described it as one bigfoot taking about 10 running steps at us. The one that was only 50 yards away, was reported to have stopped only about 30 feet behind the vehicle in the middle of the road, and so he could not take 10 running steps. Both remained invisible. Bipedal footsteps were clearly heard by them. I was fiddling with stuff in the back of car, and did not hear the action. Since I had whispered this request, the Bigfoot could not have heard it from that distance. This demonstrates a willingness to cooperate, a good memory, an interest in having fun, and an ability to count. Not exactly Gorilla like attributes. So, let me repeat it. You are underestimating them.

  18. Lyndon responds:

    Yeah silvereagle, when I’m out bigfooting, that’s what I think about…how sweet a bigfoot is and what I’m going to cook them for dinner.

    And? Well? Don’t leave it like that. What you gonna put on his plate then???

  19. Jeremy_Wells responds:

    Silvereagle wrote — “This demonstrates a willingness to cooperate, a good memory, an interest in having fun, and an ability to count. Not exactly Gorilla like attributes. So, let me repeat it. You are underestimating them.”

    Sorry, if my opinion in any way offends, but I believe that, if they are real at all, we are dealing with a flesh and blood creature, not a “spirit” or anything of the sort.

    But, I don’t feel I am “underestimating” the intuitive and comprehension abilities of the BF. If they are real, they are undoubtedly intelligent. At least as intelligent as the other great apes.

    And I wouldn’t say those attributes you mention aren’t “gorilla like attributes”. We’ve seen gorillas smart and cooperative enough to learn to communicate with us via sign-language, exhibit self-awareness, emotional attachment, etc.

    If there is any underestimating going on, I’d say you were underestimating the (well documented) cognitive abilities of gorillas and other great apes.

  20. silvereagle responds:

    Gorillas require years of intense instruction in order to communicate with man. Bigfoot requires NONE, ZIP, ZERO, NADA, NOTHING, ZILCH instruction in order to understand complicated requests in English. Understanding a whispered request in English to precisely execute it as per request, demonstrates both telepathic ability and extremely high intelligence.

    Don’t you ever go walking in the dark forest at night, without a flashlight? Why not? Because you hear strange sounds that you cannot explain, thus making it scary. So what do you think those strange sounds are caused by, crickets?, insects?, raccoons tip toeing on two hind legs?

    Most researchers are afraid to leave their keyboards in order to learn something, and even more are afraid to leave their buddies side, in order to learn something. Their buddies make too much noise. Just their breathing alone through tobacco tarred lungs, is enough to drown out all other noises. Their clothes absorb 50% of the sound you would hear if you were alone. The squeak of their chair, the crinkle of their clothes, the sniffle, the shuffle of their feet. All of these factors together, very effectively and completely kills the entire stakeout. And researchers wonder why nothing ever happens to them.

    Most researchers do all their research in the daylight, which explains why Bigfoot research is going nowhere.

    Most researchers are looking for Bigfoot, instead of listening.

    Most researchers do not attempt to communicate with the Bigfoot. They assume and hope that Bigfoot is dumber than they are. Guess what?

  21. Hawk eye responds:

    Male? Female? Doesn’t really matter IMO. It is what is inside that counts. In the long run, a dedicated, patient researcher will be the one who introduces this animal to science, and I firmly do NOT believe that gender will play a role. Jane and Dian are tossed around a lot in this thread, but I like to think it was their dedication to their work that got them recognized and NOT their sex.

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