My family and I live on the outskirts of Truckee, California. We moved there back in 1999, right around September. It was two years after that when we would see a Bigfoot while out looking for a Christmas tree.
Even back then, being from Oregon originally, we had heard the stories of Bigfoot, but never once did I believe them, period. As far as I was concerned, Bigfoot was in the imagination of money-seekers, charlatans, and, of course, pot smoking hippies.
I was wrong, very, very wrong, however. Here is what we saw, and how scary it can be to come across a monster like this.
Oh-Christmas tree – Oh-Christmas tree…
I did not know what the issue was with cutting down a Christmas tree, but even though it was legal in California at the time, they sure made you trek through the wilderness to get one, even back then.
So glad we moved back to the “get your own Christmas tree friendly” state of Oregon.
But, we were, we were out hunting down the perfect Christmas tree that year, it was 2001, and we all know that that Christmas was going to be different for everyone, even for those in the community of Truckee, California. The world had changed in more places than New York City for my family and I that year.
A real-life myth stepped out of the shadows of our imaginations and into our lives that day. Personally, it was a gift I think, however, it was a scary one for sure.
Merry Christmas… Bigfoot.
So, we had a fake tree, my wife and I found it easier after our two children were born. We had one boy and one girl within three years. So, making it easier around the holidays for my wife was number one on my list back then, but six years later, we were ready for the real thing again.
It was to be a day of snow, fun, and the best Christmas tree ever.
I do not wish to freak anyone out, especially you parents out there from that general area, but we decided to head out and up towards the Tahoe Donner Snowplay area, and then over a few miles from there to hunt down that awesome tree.
As you and many others may know, the Tahoe National Forest is located in the iconic Pacific Northwest, it is all forest here, mountains and forest as far as you can see. Even Truckee is located in the higher elevations here and surrounded by pine trees and more mountains.
To tell you a truth, when I first moved here there had been a couple of weird experiences that happened to me within the first year living just outside Truckee.
Before I mention them though, it is not that I was not warned about Bigfoot hanging around the area and outlying mountains of Truckee. I had two co-workers who became close family friends even today who told me of the hollers and screams from the hills. One of them said he had a night visitor several times on his property, and he lived on the edge of town as well.
The first time I heard something was near the tail end of winter that first year, about 5-6 months after we moved there.
We lived on the outskirts of town on China Camp Rd. I was taking out the garbage one night and heard the darndest howl I’d ever heard in my life. I thought coyote, but, I have to say, it sounded like nothing I had heard before.
As I said, I am from Oregon, and I love the outdoors, camping, hunting, fishing, you name it. I have heard everything, even crazy forest folk once up outside of Brookings, Oregon while hunting one evening.
This was weird; I couldn’t place it with any known animal I’d ever heard before.
Once again, late spring of the same year, I heard it again. This time I grabbed my wife, and she listened intently as this thing, which was miles and miles away, had the size of lungs to be heard by us all the way down in the outskirts of town howling in the night.
It was creepy she mentioned to me. After that, I did keep the handgun in the sock drawer, and a full clip under our mattress. It was the kind of howl that made your skin go cold and full of goosebumps. She was a little apprehensive I noticed after that being out after dark, even on our property.
Jiminy Christmas! It’s Bigfoot!
Two years there and Christmas brought us the desire for a real Christmas tree. Besides, the fake one was losing needles! Ha!
The kids were old enough to have some fun, so we decided to make it a day of tree hunting, and snowball fighting and sledding.
We made it to the snow park by 8 A.M I remember. We had everything we needed, a few saucers for sledding, lunch, and two thermoses, one with my wife’s famous cider, and the other full of hot cocoa.
Even though we would never forget that day, I know it was not all based on seeing a Bigfoot, it was a great morning just hanging out we’ll never forget. It is a beautiful place out there in Truckee, and outside of it.
The snow had come in torrents that year. Thank goodness for global warming, I laugh. The snow that year was rather substantial from what I heard from the other locals that had been there for forever and a day. There were days I could barely get to work, but thank goodness for a good Ford Pickup, and some awesome tires.
That day it was clear, well, overcast a bit, but clear of any real precipitation. Yeah, some snowflakes came down here and there, but it was pretty nice all day. It was so nice, visibility was great too, and thank goodness for that.
We stayed and played for a few hours; it was not until between 11-12 noon before we packed up and left to find a tree.
We must have gone 3-4 miles before we turned off on a small dirt road that led into and up a mountain. We did not want to go too far, so about 200 yards up the road we stopped and pulled over.
We could tell we were not the only ones out that way that day; the road was half muddy slush, half snow. We were basically in the middle of a gully that was rather flat for being at the foot of a mountain. There were also boot tracks of all sizes leading in all directions on both sides of the old road.
I remember we grabbed some cider and the kids grabbed some cocoa, and we decided to head east a bit, it was not as much of an incline that way.
We must have walked a couple of hundred yards when my wife said she saw someone up ahead. She was not sure if it was a man or woman, but she saw someone, pretty tall, walk between some trees about 40 or so yards ahead of us.
For an overcast day, it was still clear; the only reason visibility was hard was because of the trees, it was darker the further back you looked, the forests here usually are, no matter the amount of sunshine or, lack of it.
I stood there for a few seconds or so but noticed nothing, no movement or sound for that matter.
We kept the kids close to us, of course, but I did notice there was no sound at all, not a bird, not a sound period but the wind through the trees every few minutes or so.
We decided to keep looking for a tree and finally found one. The perfect spruce full and lively. The wife and the kids agreed, and I started on cutting it down.
I was just starting on it when my wife said: “look at that.” There was a tree shaking violently back and forth not far from us, maybe 40-50 yards away. You could see it shaking as if there was an earthquake below it and nowhere else.
It was the weirdest thing I’d ever seen out in the woods. But, I knew it must be a black bear. I was wrong.
I told my wife to keep an eye out that way, and if it were a bear, we were pretty much safe as it was up wandering around and was most likely trying to get something out of that tree to eat.
I kept sawing for a few more seconds before we heard the craziest, well, grunting type of yell? It is hard to say what it sounded like other than a “Ruuuahhh.” It was quick, odd, and sounded like a man or person with a deep voice and big set of lungs.
My wife looked at me, gathered up the kids under each arm as we looked in the direction where we heard the sound, in the same direction of the tree that was shaking moments before.
I looked intently I remember into the dark of the forest when I noticed, finally, some movement. Whatever it was was tall, dark, and fast. I watched as it leaned out from behind a group of trees and took a quick and long step from one to another.
Whatever or whoever it was back there did not make a sound to alert us they were in the area, and they seem to be looking in our direction. We felt a little spooked by then, so I got to finish the cut and fall the tree.
My wife kept her eye on it or them, and it kept swaying back and forth. She was telling me what she could about it, and soon enough she knew we were not dealing with a human being or person. In fact, she was the first one to utter the word “Bigfoot.”
A Christmas to remember.
I do not know what was scarier, thinking that it was a person at first staring at us, or a giant monster of the forest.
I fell the tree, and since this thing had not moved towards us, I decided we would move slowly, but surely, back to the car, tree in tow, of course. My wife was a little frantic, and I have to say, so was I. WIth kids you want to keep them safe, and having some monster of the woods watching them and us from the darkness, well, that is just more than we could handle.
We made our way back, and cautiously as I said. I was not armed at the time; I left that handgun in the truck. I should have grabbed it, but I forgot with all the fun we were all having up to that point.
My wife and I kept an eye on it, and it did follow us all the way back. Once I caught a good visual, well, my wife I would learn was correct, we were being stalked or simply shadowed by a Bigfoot.
I could not make out a face, but the hair seemed dark, like almost black. It was tall, I would guess about 7-8-feet tall at least. It walked funny with large strides, and its arms were passed its knees, something I would learn later was rather common with them.
The ape-like features I could not make out like others have said or stated; I could not see the face. But it was not a bear on two legs, this had a human shape and walked like us the whole time. My wife would see it as well a few moments later.
We made it back to the car, and that thing stopped just down the road off to the side still standing behind but, bobbing in and out from behind trees looking at us.
I can’t say I felt completely threatened, but something inside me said we needed to leave and do not think we were safe from this animal in the truck. Besides, the size of this thing also made me think my gun would do no more damage to this thing than a BB gun to a buck.
I threw the tree in the back of the truck, and my wife strapped the kids in the back seat and sat with them as we took off.
That Bigfoot was now, at that point, down the road from us, so we would pass it as we drove by. It never moved and stood about 15-20 feet off the side of the road.
As I approached, it still stood there. I could not go too fast as the roads were bad, not too bad for a truck, but we were headed downhill and I had kids to care for, and a monster I did not want to be stranded in the woods with.
It took a step towards the road I remember as we got closer to it and “smack!” It took a massive step forward and hit the passenger side of the truck with its left hand. My wife screamed and turned away to cover the kids.
This thing was tall and the event happened so fast and with my attention on the road I could still not make out a face, not that I really wanted to at that point.
We passed it and after a few minutes hit the main highway again.
The beast of Christmas past.
There were no marks on the truck when I finally pulled over to take a look. It smacked it hard enough I thought it might, but no mark or dent was left behind for evidence.
Personally, as I said, I did not feel all that threatened by the beast of a thing until it hit my truck.
Today we still head out to get a Christmas tree in the country, but the country is usually a tree farm. We do, however, still camp, fish, hunt, and enjoy the woods back in Oregon today, but we keep eyes in the back of our heads, and the gun in a holster on my hip at all times.
Like I said, I did not feel threatened until that thing hit the truck. It followed us, but never once made an aggressive move towards us until we were driving down the road. Personally, Dave, I felt as though it was trying to get us to move on, that was all.
Thanks, and Merry Christmas…
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