Quest for Bigfoot hunters takes new twist
As last week’s Bigfoot article stridently conveyed, rumors abound when it comes to all things Sasquatch. It was reported that Animal Planet’s team of hunters may have been searching locally for you-know-who, though definite answers proved to be elusive. Thanks to new information this week, the smoke has cleared and the mirrors have been shattered.
A bounty of $10 million has been placed on Sasquatch’s hairy head (and/or feet) by the television network Spike TV (rather than the Animal Planet and their Bigfoot Field Research Organization, as was initially rumored). Departing, slightly, from their usual fare of bikinis, horsepower, and explosions to “one-up” the gang over at Animal Planet, Spike TV is offering what they tout as “the largest cash prize in television history” for “irrefutable evidence” that Bigfoot, in fact, exists. The substantial reward has been backed by Lloyd’s of London, a prestigious insurance establishment that has existed in one form or another since the early 1700s, and has yet to welsh on a debt.
According to Spike TV’s website, the show, which is still filming and has yet to air any episodes, will be called 10 Million Dollar Bigfoot Bounty and will feature “scientists, zoologists, seasoned trackers, and actual Bigfoot hunters who all believe in the infamous creature’s existence.” An unknown number of separate teams will be scouring forest and field in a race to claim the prize, and yes, they have been searching in Klickitat County.
Though a call from The Sentinel to a representative of Spike TV met the same “non-disclosure agreement” dead-end that shrouded initial reports in such mystery, Washington State Parks area manager Lem Pratt was proud to say that the NDAs of television networks “are not applicable to servants of the state.”
Pratt reported that crews from the television network were on location within the boundaries of Brooks Memorial State Park as recently as July 4. They were allowed to film on state land only after jumping through several legal hoops. Special permits had to be filed for and approved, not only to film, but also to gather any evidence from the state park. The “scientific research permit” allowed the team to leave with what Pratt said were “some hair samples and a small animal carcass” believed to have possibly been killed by a predatory animal of some kind. When Pratt was asked if the crews had obtained any prize-winning evidence at Brooks, he said, “To my knowledge they did not.” According to him, though, the venture was not without incident. Local EMS teams were called to the park when a crew member sustained a knee injury while battling what the show’s website refers to as “nature’s inhospitable conditions.”
In the modern age of digital technology, evidence such as photos and video have become suspect, and it is doubtful that any such proof would be deemed “irrefutable.” The same goes for hair samples and casts made of mysteriously large footprints. Spike TV’s website, http://www.spike.com, gives no exact definition of the sort of proof needed to claim the bounty, but from the vague parameters listed online, it could be assumed that an actual bigfoot specimen, dead or alive, is what they are getting at.
Here is where some strange laws come into play. Neither the State of Washington nor Klickitat County list any specific laws regarding the killing of sasquatches that could be found, though some other counties within the state have deemed it necessary to pass ordinances on Bigfoot’s behalf.
In 1992, Whatcom County voted unanimously to pass a resolution, no. 92-043, declaring itself a “Sasquatch Protection and Refuge Area,” and remains so to this day.
In 1969, our neighbor to the west, Skamania County, passed ordinance 69-01, which stated that any “premeditated, willful and wanton slaying of such creature [Sasquatch] shall be deemed a felony punishable by a fine not to exceed Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000) and/or imprisonment in the county jail for a period not to exceed Five (5) years.” The ordinance was partially repealed and amended in 1984 by Ordinance 1984-2, which reduced the charge to a misdemeanor and reduced fines and jail time to $1,000 and one year, respectively.
Lem Pratt has spent the last 28 years walking the woods as an employee of various state and national parks, and during that time he has personally seen the tracks of nearly every natural predator that calls this continent home. He has yet to see any he would attribute to the elusive Sasquatch. He has seen “irrefutable evidence” of the elusive Bigfoot hunter, right in Goldendale’s own back yard, and the very citation of non-disclosure agreements to this paper by some dutiful employees in the Glenwood area lends heavy credence to Spike TV’s presence there, on private lands, as well.
Only time will tell if the $10 million prize shall be claimed, and as of The Sentinel’s press time, Bigfoot remained unavailable for comment.