Well, it had definitely been a while. I haven't been out squatching since May. With the advent of the passing of my dad, then some personal , and financial setbacks, I just haven't had the opportunity to get back out there. The economy has been tough on a lot of us. This being said, I have now have plenty of time to squatch, but the costs of even taking day trips, is hard for me to justify at this time.
A couple of months ago, I was introduced to a squatcher, who goes by the name, “Woodrat.” I was contacted by Larry, from SierraSquatch.com, who told me about Woodrat's, multiple encounters with squatches, in the northeastern Sierras. Larry thought I might be interested in comparing notes with Woodrat, as we both live in Reno, and are exploring the same general area.
Honestly, I was hesitant at first. It's not that I was leery of sharing my info with him, but I am rather set in my ideas of how I like to act, and what methods I employ while in the field. My approach is to just be normal as possible. I'm just some dude, walking through the woods. I don't try sneaking around. I'm not covered in camo thinking I'm going to outwit any bigfoot into revealing themselves to me. I believe that when I'm out there, that if I get the opportunity to see one, it will be on their terms, not mine. For me, it's pinpointing an area that I suspect maybe a travel corridor for sasquatches, and simply hiking the area, while keeping my awareness sharp, and my head on a swivel, watching for possible signs and/or tracks. Then I hope our paths cross, with a safe, harmonious, outcome. Almost all sightings are accidental, on both the humans', and the sasquatches' part. Correct?
A couple weeks after Larry contacted me, I finally gave Woodrat a call. We spoke for a good hour or more. I listened intently as he recounted his various encounters he's had, in the general vicinity that I had been working. We actually hit it off rather well. Both of us like to fish and squatch, so it's hard not to get along. Woodrat is one of those guys, unlike myself, with the “grande marbles,” who ventures out alone. As I've stated before, I'm a big chicken, so I never squatch solo. During a family camping trip in 2008, a female squatch walked through their camp, at dusk, while Woodrat's wife and baby girl were there alone, as he was out doing a little recon. The wife's brief encounter scared the heck out of her. Now she won't go camping anymore, and no longer wants Woodrat to go out alone either. So, now she's much happier that Woodrat has someone to squatch with. My squatch partner, my nephew Hank, has recently moved up to Salem, OR. So, I'm glad too, now that I have someone to baby sit me while I'm bounding around the beautiful Sierras.
Saturday, July 24, 2010, Woodrat and I ventured out to the area of the northeastern Sierras where he's had his encounters, His area of concentration was just 20 miles from where I had been exploring. Neither of us like to go out on weekends, due to all the possible human traffic, but it was the only day that worked for us, so we went. It had been over 2 months since I was last out in the mountains. I had bad case of testosterone overload, amping up my anticipation for this trip. Saturday or not, any day I get to squatch, is a good day.
At first, we drove through very active recreation areas and full campgrounds. I thought to myself, “Uh-oh.” Then Woodrat veered off the highway, on to a forest road, then a logging road, then another, and another. Before I knew it, we were deep in the forest, at about 7000 feet in elevation. The road, was narrow and dusty and looked like it hadn't been traveled on for some time. Most of the forest was dark and thick, so finding corridors of possible movement was going to be more obvious, and easier to find.
After about 30 minutes of driving down this old dusty road, we turned into a smaller road, about 7 feet wide, overgrown with brush on each side. The screeching sounds of branches rubbing against the paint of his truck, reminded me of nails on a chalkboard. After a couple hundred yards, it began to open up, and then the forest gave way to a meadow. I thought to myself, “This is feeling rather squatchy.”
It feeling squatchy is a good thing. It has been a few months since I'd been up in the deep Sierras, so now I'm dying to get out of the truck.
Woodrat said not to bother putting my 35 pound pack on. We were only going to do a quick recon of the area for squatch signs.
Will follow up on more later.....................