Monday, October 10, 2016

Waiting for Bigfoot

A Tampa Bay investigator checks out local Bigfoot sightings.

Around 8:30 p.m. on Sept. 9, 2014, while driving home from Sarasota along State Road 72, an Arcadia woman saw something strange. “I thought I saw a deer to my right,” she later wrote, “but then I realized it wasn’t a deer.

She hit the brakes as a huge creature leaped across the street in two bounds less than 15 feet in front of her. The beast had long, shaggy, dark hair and a tan, leathery face. Its shoulders were as wide as a Dodge. The woman knew immediately what she had seen and knew immediately whom to call: the Florida Bigfoot Researchers Organization.

Investigator Re Monteith met with the woman days later. They went over additional details and revisited the location of the sighting. The Arcadia woman, who didn’t think Bigfoot was real before that night, was now a believer. For her, it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience; for Monteith, it was just another day spent hunting for signs of the beast.

Monteith’s fascination with Bigfoot developed early. When she was a youngster in Fort Lauderdale, she and her father devoured news reports about Skunk Ape sightings. Bigfoot aficionados consider Bigfoot and similar creatures like the Skunk Ape, the Yeti and the Momo to be closely related and maybe the same species. “It fascinated me and also scared me to death,” says Monteith, now 51. “We were very close to some of these sightings.”

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