All posts by C.E. Martin

USAF Veteran, Retired Criminal Investigator, Author, Father, X-boxer... writing from the Dadcave in Southern Indiana.

S Is For Sea Serpent: Ogopogo, Champ, Caddy, and Storsie

if you’ve ever passed a moving body of water and seen something, barely sticking from the surface, you’ve probably had a fleeting moment of wondering Could that be a monster–like Nessie? Odds are, what you saw turned out to be a stick, a turtle, or even a snake–or maybe just some garbage. After all, Nessie is just from Scotland, right? There aren’t any other sea/lake monsters, are there?

Not surprisingly, there are. Some scoff at this notion and say that swells on the surface of a body of water are caused by underwater currents, or that stationary objects, like submerged trees, create the illusion of something swimming, when really it’s just water flowing around the object. They say that this optical illusion causes us to fill in the gaps and imagine a monster.

Others argue differently. They say there are undiscovered, aquatic cryptids around the world. They have photos, witness accounts and even videos of these alleged creatures. Aquatic monsters are everywhere, it seems.

Ogopogo hails from Canada–Okanagan Lake, to be specific, in British Columbia. It has allegedly been seen by natives since the 1800s, and is described as a 40-50 foot sea serpent, like the Mosasaurus.

In 1946, thirty carloads of people reported seeing the creature from Okanagan Mission beach. In 1968, the creature (or, at least, it’s wake) was filmed moving across the lake. In 2011, Ogopogo was captured–on cell phone video

This isn’t the Americas’ only swimming cryptid, by the way. Champ and Caddy are two more cryptids reported in North America. Champ hails from Lake Champlain, which is near Quebec, New York, and Vermont. Sightings go back to before 1609, when the first European settler (Samuel de Champlain) reported the cryptid, describing it as “20-foot serpent thick as a barrel, and a head like a horse”.

On the other side of the continent, back in the Pacific Northwest, Ogopogo’s cousin, Caddy (short for Cadborosaurus) has been sighted in Cadboro Bay, British Columbia for more than 200 years. Like Nessie and Ogopogo, Caddy too has purportedly been photographed and filmed, and is reported to resemble a “huge sea serpent with a horse-like head”.

Leaving America, and crossing back to Europe, one needn’t return to some of the other Lochs in Scotland to search for lake monsters (although several other Lochs also claim to have them). Instead, you could journey to Sweden in search of Storsjöodjuret, a lake serpent seen in Lake Storsjön in Jämtland, and described as looking like a serpentine or aquatic reptile with fins across its back and the head of a dog.

If you strike out in Sweden, fear not, a quick trip to Norway could put you on the track of Selma, a large, snake-like creature believed to reside in Lake Seljord in Seljord, Telemark, Norway. If you aren’t sure what you’re looking for, fear not, Selma appears on the coat of arms of Seljord.

There are many, many more alleged aquatic beasts around the world. Until 2016, you could go to Vietnam and would probably catch a glimpse of such a beast–Cụ Rùa (“great grandfather turtle”), a giant, soft shell turtle of the species Rafetus leloii, which resided in Hoàn Kiếm Lake in Hanoi, Vietnam. There are also countless of tales of giant fish seen as monsters–like the rumored man-sized catfish of Lake Cumberland, Kentucky, or Alaska’s Iliamna Lake Monster, Illie.

It seems that wherever there’s a body of water, there be monsters. Remember that the next time you go swimming and aren’t sure just what that is in the water, just below the surface, heading towards you…

ROC, ROPEN, SCISSORS: TERRORS OF THE SKY

Roc, Ropen, Scissors: Terrors of the Skies

Look! Up in the Sky! It’s a bird… It’s a plane… it’s a… cryptid?

Monsters are not just confined to the woods and water. As it turns out, there are a variety of Fortean folktales about giant flying creatures that can swoop down and pluck helpless mortals off their feet and carry them off to unimaginably horrible demises. Here in the U.S., these days Mothman grabs all the headlines, but it wasn’t always so. In fact, if you counted up legends and sightings, he’d easily be dethroned from his pop culture throne by the true reigning champion of aeronautical cryptozoology: the Thunderbird.

Thunderbirds have been sighted all across the United States and North America, long before Europeans fled religious persecution in their homelands and settled here. The native tribes had many legends of these giant birds, and many descriptions as well.

If you read the blog earlier this month, you might have caught mention of winged reptiles swooping down on the surprised citizens of the Southwest in the 1970s. And then there was the tale of a young man in Illinois who was nearly carried off by a strange bird of enormous proportions, much like a scene from the movie “The Valley of Gwanji”. But there’s more to the Thunderbird and its winged cousins around the world than some amazing cinematic stop animation. Nor does the Thunderbird rule its skies—other flying creatures have struck terror into the hearts and minds of the Earthbound, all around our globe:

The Roc is a legendary winged beast from Africa and the Middle East, reported in some instances to be large enough to carry away elephants.

The Ropen is a modern day, extant dino-bird, hailing from Southeast Asia, with reports still surfacing to this day.

Here in the U.S., Illinois was once home to a legendary, chimera-like creature called the Piasa that was described as being as large as a calf with horns on their heads like a deer, a beard like a tiger’s, a face somewhat like a man’s, a body covered with scales, and a long fish’s tail.

But by far, the widest reported of all the sky terrors was an enormous bird with a wingspan far surpassing that of any vulture or condor—a black-feather avian powerful enough to lift a small child.

Before we scoff at a report like this, we need to examine whether or not it’s even possible for a feather bird to be big enough to carry a small human. Condors and Turkey vultures are definitely big enough to carry away squirrels and even small house cats, but they have a wingspan that just isn’t wide enough to hoist anything bigger than that.

That wasn’t always the case, though. Turning to the fossil record, scientists have theorized a bird that would make even the inhabitants of Sesame Street shake in terror: Argentavis magnificens. Discovered in Argentina, this giant raptor was estimated to have a wingspan up to twenty-four feet wide. How much could such a beast lift up into the sky? That is debatable, as some scientists have speculated the avian’s own weight may have forced it to run into strong winds to even get aloft. But, if we consider that the Osprey, with a wingspan of up to 26 inches can pluck a fish weighing as much as 10 ounces from the water, it isn’t that much of a stretch to consider that the Argentavis could lift something considerably larger.

If Argentavis doesn’t fit the bill, there was one other bird even larger: Pelagornis sandersi, with a wingspan of up to twenty-four feet and a head that looked more dino than dodo.

Now that we know it was at least once possible for a bird to be big enough to grab a boy, we should look for other accounts of it happening. And, terrifyingly, there are.

Reports may be few and far between less horrible bird stories, but there are tales of Stellar Sea Eagles (with only 8 foot wingspans) attacking children and carrying off small dogs. The Golden Eagle (with a slightly smaller wingspan) is also reported to have attacked children, as in this video from Kyrgyzstan

The girl attacked wasn’t carried off, or harmed all that much, but the point here is that yes, large birds will attack people—and their pets.

Years ago, I read two accounts of Eagles actually attacking children. I can’t find them now, but the first involved a Stellar Sea Eagle attacking a small child, while the second was a report of Eagles plucking babies from the huts of their parents in Africa and killing and eating them.

Sound preposterous? Not really, when you consider that a small deer can be the same size as a baby, and there’s video of Eagles flying one back to their nest and eating it:

But don’t think that means the Thunderbird (so called for the sound it’s wings make, or in some tales it’s ability to summon thunderstorms) doesn’t have a hankering for longpig.

While the Piasa of Illini Indian legends doesn’t look much like an Eagle, it was reported to prefer a Manwich over Bambi. As the legend goes, the Illini unsuccessfully tried to kill the creature, until the Great Spirit appeared in a vision to the chief Ouatoga, telling him how to kill the monster. The chief stood in a clearing, as bait, then twenty of his warriors hid and waited. When the Piasa swooped down to eat Ouatoga, it was instead riddled with poison arrows. In today’s modern age of firearms, the Piasa definitely wouldn’t stand much of a chance, nor would its fellow sky-terror, the Thunderbird.

So, where are all the Thunderbirds? Some have suggested the beasts preyed on the buffalo before it was hunted to near-extinction. Of course, they might still be here, dining on all those missing pets we hear about regularly. Looking up, into the sky, with nothing to judge its size against, it would be hard to distinguish a massive bird from just a large one—unless you happened to be flying alongside it.

O is for Octopus (Tree): Unbelievable Paranormal Hoaxes

They say that seeing is believing, but that isn’t really true when it comes to the paranormal or supernatural. A long history of hoaxes and the prevalence of photoshop has lessened the ability of a picture to paint a believable thousand words. Today, witness testimonies and recordings of strange noises seem to inspire more belief in something not seen than a glossy 8×10.

But why don’t we believe in photos anymore? Is it because so many have been faked? Or is it because we have been so quick to believe them? To really understand the power a photo used to have, we need to look back in time, to simpler times…

In 1998, a hoax that is sadly forgotten today was launched–the story of the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus (Octopus paxarbolis). Now, before you roll your eyes and think that this was not a successful hoax (or else, you’d remember it) consider this: Snopes.org, once revered as the go-to site on the internet for debunking hoaxes and half-truths felt compelled, in 2014, to explain to the public that the Tree Octopus wasn’t real. That’s right, sixteen years later, some people still wondered if there really were Tree octopi—even though the webpage asking for help saving them explaining their major predator was Sasquatch.

What is a tree octopus? you might be wondering. Well, according to the official website (https://zapatopi.net/treeoctopus/) this gentle cephalopod hails from the rainy forests of the Olympic Peninsula, on the Eastern side of the Olympic mountain range, residing both in fresh water and in the wet canopy of the forest. Its natural predators include house cats, the bald eagle, and sasquatch.

Yes, sasquatch.

Okay, so now you might be wondering how could anyone believe that an octopus could live on land and in fresh water, and that the rainy season of the Pacific Northwest is what allowed its continued existence.

Before you judge a whole generation, take into account the era this took place in.

In 1988, the USAF revealed the existence of the F-117 Stealth Fighter, an “invisible” plane.

In 1989, Bob Lazar came forward, claiming to have reverse-engineered UFOs at the then-highly classified Area 51 military base at Groom Lake, Nevada.

In 1993, The X-Files premiered on television, bringing conspiracies, UFOs and the paranormal into the popculture mainstream.

In 1995, Ray Santelli presented his Alien Autopsy film, which purported to show the examination of an alien body recovered from a UFO crash. (This wasn’t revealed to be a hoax until 2006).

In 1999, the year following the Tree Octopus’ internet debut, audiences were terrified with the “found footage” film, The Blair Witch Project, many initially believing the film was based on true events.

And let’s not forget, the Internet was epically exploding onto the scene, worldwide, in the 1990s, allowing people to not only get information previously hidden in libraries around the globe, but to share reports of the strange and unusual. 1995, for example, saw the formation of the Bigfoot Research Organization.

You also need to remember a similar hoax, revealed in 1993, that was much older: the Surgeon’s Photo.

You might not know it’s name, but this iconic black-and-white image of the Lochness Monster’s head and neck sticking out of the water is known around the world, even today. Despite the fact that it was entirely a hoax, perpetrated by a conspiracy of three men, it is still cited when the Lochness Monster is discussed. The revelation it was a hoax did not diminished belief in Nessie.

According to the website The Unmuseum, Nessie’s most famous photo happened like this:

A man named Duke Weatherell wanted revenge on the London Daily Mail newspaper. This was because in 1933, they had hired him to find the Lochness Monster. He found footprints, made casts and size estimates and sent them off to the London Museum of Natural History. Later, it was discovered Weatherell had been hoaxed himself by locals—the footprints were frauds. The paper who hired Weatherell in turn ridiculed the man and humiliated him.

Fast forward to April 1934, and Colonel Robert Kenneth Wilson, a physician (and surgeon), presented the famous Nessie photo we’re talking about. This “proof” of Nessie remained contested, but believed, for decades. It wasn’t until 1993 that the full story came out, thanks to the work of David Martin and Alastair Boyd., who spoke to one of the men really responsible for the Surgeon’s photo, and who confirmed it was indeed a hoax.

Christian Spurling, stepson of Weatherell, admitted he’d made the “monster” out of some plastic and a clockwork, tinplate, toy submarine at his father’s request. Weatherell and his son actually took the completed faux Nessie out and photographed it. But they needed help disseminating the photo, since Duke had already been thoroughly discredited. They enlisted the aid of Maurice Chambers, who in turn contacted Colonel Wilson, who brought the photo forward and claimed credit for taking it.

Just five years after Nessie’s most famous mugshot was revealed to be a hoax, Lyle Zapato brought the plight of this Tree octopus to world attention with the creation of the website dedicated to saving it and used a similar methodology to fool people: he faked some photos (e.g. by placing a dead octopus in a tree and snapping some pics).

Today, the Tree Octopus is largely forgotten–a hoax when hoaxing was significantly harder to do. Hopefully, it and the surgeon’s photo have taught us all a valuable lesson: Don’t believe everything you see.

G Is For Gillman: When Paranormal Life Imitates Art

On March 3, 1972, Officer Ray Shockey, of the Loveland Police Department reported seeing something truly bizarre: a large, frog-like creature, measuring 3 to 4 feet in length. This wasn’t the first time creatures like this were reported in Ohio: stories go back to the mid-1950s about 3 to 4 foot tall, bipedal creatures sighted near the Little Miami River. And, Ohio isn’t the only source of reptilian creature stories. A variety of reports exist from around the country, and the world, of upright-walking “lizard men”. But what is really interesting about these sightings is their alternatives in the world of art, or to be more specific, film.

Debuting in 1954, The Creature from the Black Lagoon impressed audiences for decades with its amazing 3D underwater photography and a creature, the Gillman (as fans call him), who was surprisingly advanced compared to other monsters of the genre. In the film, explorers (played by Richard Carlson, Julie Adams, and Richard Denning) journey to the Amazon and encounter an upright, amphibious creature that seems to be intelligent.

In 1955, following the Creature’s box-office success, the first of two sequels was released: Revenge of the Creature. In this sequel, the Gillman (or possibly another Gillman—the film doesn’t really specify) is again located in the Amazon, but this time is captured and transported back to America and put on display in a Marine park. As expected, the Creature escapes and wreaks havoc as he makes his way to the ocean to escape civilization. Of note in this film are the many sequences where the Creature is seen by surprised, incredulous citizens and the police, including a sequence where he crosses a road at night.

Could Revenge of the Creature have inspired later sightings of frog/lizard/reptile men? Did this very popular movie embed itself in our psyches and in akind of amphibious pareidolia cause people surprised by the unexpected to imagine something not just fantastic, but Fortean?

A single instance of paranormal life-possibly-imitating-art wouldn’t be good evidence that this can happen. Afterall, seeing the Gillman crossing a road is a lot different from seeing Jesus on a potato chip. But this isn’t the only known instance suspect sightings possibly based on fiction. And, in a weird case of synchronicity, another such incident, also involving Richard Carlson, may have happened in the 1970s…

Released in 1969, The Valley of Gwanji saw Richard Carlson again returning to the screen to fight the Fortean, this time in the form of a very angry Allosaurus (the titular “Gwanji”) located in a remote, forgotten region of the Mexican desert, at the turn of the 19th-20th Century. Under the direction of Champ Connors (Carlson) and his employer, T.J. Breckenridge (Gila Golan), and assisted by Tuck Kirby (James Francisco), a talent scout for Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, the Breckenridge Wild West Show takes a page from the Gillman/King Kong and captures the extant Dinosaur and puts it on display for all to see. Of course, things go wrong, Gwanji eats people, rampages in a Mexican city, and ends up burning down a church.

Now, as far as I know, no one has reported a real-life version of these events, although there are stories of the “Kasai Rex”, Mokele Mbembe’s carnivorous cousin, out of Africa. However, Gwanji’s lost valley wasn’t just home to the reigning Allosaur—it was also home to a prerodactyl-like dino.

In one particular scene of the movie, the pterodactyl swoops down and tries to carry off Lope’, a local boy-merchant who was assisting in the expedition into Gwanji’s valley. There is an extended sequence of the Pterodactyl trying to carry Lope’ away, but the scrawny little entrepreneur is just too heavy.

Fast forward to 1977, and Lawndale, Illinois. There, young, ten-year-old Marlon Lowe was outside, minding his own business one evening, when out of the sky swooped a giant bird that grabbed the boy and tried to carry him away. Fortunately for Marlon, his mother Ruth heard his scream, ran outside and drove away the giant bird and its bystanding companion.

I’ll note that Illinois is known for another giant, flying creature: the Piasa bird of Alton, Illinois, represented by Native American cliffside drawings above the Mississippi River and local legends. However, I also will note that I too was ten years old in 1977, and I vividly recall seeing The Valley of Gwanji on TV many times during the 1970s—it was one of my favorite movies, and still is.

Was Marlon Lowe the victim of a Thunderbird? Or perhaps an out-of-place Stellar Sea Eagle, or a famished, confused Turkey Vulture? Did Marlon and his mother concoct this story after seeing Gwanji’s pterodactyl brethren? Or did they partially-hallucinate/embellish a sighting of a large bird attacking Marlon, with no attempt to carry him away? Yes, there are accounts of large birds carrying off small pets and even attacking children, but there are also accounts of large hawks defending the area around a tree they have a nest in—going so far as to dive-bomb people just walking by.

The Gillman and Gwanji are surely not the only instances of art possibly inspiring the paranormal. The Legend of Boggy Creek was released in 1972. It inspired an increase in Bigfoot sightings thereafter—even one of my own cousins, in rural Southern Indiana, was convinced he saw a ‘squatch not long after seeing Boggy Creek at the drive in. And even the September 20, 1961 Betty and Barney Hill story of alien abduction (which they only remembered after hypnosis) is suspect when one considers the 1951 release of It Came From Outer Space, a film about aliens abducting Earthlings.

Life does indeed imitate art, but perhaps, more often than we’d like to admit, it is inspired by it.

B Is For Buried: The Mystery Of The Bosnian Pyramids

If you are at all remotely interested in archaeology, you no doubt know that in addition to Egypt’s pyramids, there are also pyramids in Central and South America, and even in China. But were you aware that there are pyramids in Bosnia?

If you Google “bosnian pyramid” one of the first results to pop up will be a link to a Wikipedia page for the “Bosnian Pyramid Claims”. The article talks about the “pseudoarchaeological” theory that several hills in Bosnia are actually dirt-covered pyramids.

In 2005, Bosnian businessman Semir Osmanagic began looking into possible buried pyramids after noticing in aerial photos that hills near Visoko had a decidedly pyramid-shape. Osmanagic has been excavating and trying to prove to the scientific community that there are indeed man-made pyramids in Bosnia, larger than the Great Pyramid, but he has met with strong opposition.

Zahi Hawass, the former Egyptian Minister of State for Antiquities Affairs, angrily scoffed at the idea, stating his reluctance to believe any pyramid existed outside of Egypt. Yet, Osmanagic has purportedly documented the excavation of paving stones at the site—which skeptics claim were just laid on a hill that had been shaped to look like a pyramid, as if that meant it wasn’t really a pyramid.

Why though, is there such reluctance to believe that a pyramid couldn’t be in Bosnia? Is that because agreeing to such an idea would lend credence to a number of Fortean theories about our Earth and history?

One theory has been expressed that the Bosnian Pyramid, just like the underwater Yonaguni “ruins” near Okinawa Japan, and the countless reports of submerged Stonehenge-like structures around the world support the Biblical Flood story.

Another theory suggests that an ancient civilization, possibly the one the Atlantis myth is based on, spread out around the world, building similar structures to those found in Egypt.

And, of course, you can’t leave out the Ancient Aliens theory that all the world’s pyramids were built by extraterrestrial visitors.

A less far-fetched, but more conspirational theory is that Dr. Hawass cast doubt on the Bosnian Pyramid to protect Egypt’s monopoly on archaeological tourism.

Whatever the reason, it does seem odd that so many people condemn the idea of a Bosnian pyramid, just because it is currently buried. Especially when one considers the Great Pyramid of Cholula, in Pueblo Mexico.

This massive structure is also covered in dirt. When the Spanish arrived to the region, the site had been abandoned by the natives, the original builders taken over by the ToltecChichimecas in the 12th Century. Seeing only a hill, the Spanish built a church there–Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de los Remedios (Church of Our Lady of Remedies), also known as the Santuario de la Virgen de los Remedios (Sanctuary of the Virgin of Remedies).

After discovering the hill wasn’t just a hill after all, tunneling began in 1931. Today, one corner of the original structure has been excavated and can be visited.

Oddly, this is very similar to the Bosnian pyramids — today, tunneling continues throughout Visoko’s strange hill, held back, Mr. Osmanagic says, by a lack of sufficient funding.

Are the Bosnian pyramids a 21st Century equivalent to the Great Pyramid of Cholua?

If you’re wondering, the Great Pyramid of Cholula has a base three-times larger than Khufu’s Great Pyramid, but is significantly shorter. Bosnia largest purported-pyramid, on the other hand, is considerably taller than Khufu’s Great Pyramid. The Great Pyramid of Cholula also holds a world-record as the largest monument ever constructed. But you’ve probably never heard of it, either—or the possible, submerged pyramid in Wisconsin’s Rock Lake.

A Is For Alma: The Many Names of BigFOOT

You would have to be some kind of hermit to not have heard of the creature known as “Bigfoot”. A giant, hairy hominid, this alleged large-footed biped is most popularly said to roam the forests of the Pacific Northwest. But, that isn’t the only place the elusive cryptid also called Sasquatch is purported to roam. Not surprisingly, sightings of a tall, hairy giant abound around the world and even pervade popculture. And, just as there are multiple names for half-seen, noncorporeal beings said to haunt the living, Bigfoot is known by many other names, some based on the region, and others tied to the theories as to just what this being or creature may truly be…

Almas—The Mongolian word for “wild man”, Alma, the Alma/Almas is said to inhabit the Caucasus and Pamir Mountains of Central Asia, and the Altai Mountains of western Mongolia.

Barmanou—also known as the Barmanu or Baddmanus, this creature comes from the mountainous region of western Pakistan and is described as a primate with human and ape characteristics.

Bagwajiwinini—while Sasquatch might be the most familiar NAtive American names for Bigfoot, it is only one of many. In Ojibwe, the big man is call Bagwajiwinini (bug-wo-gee-wih-nih-nih), meaning wild man/natural man, or Misaabe: a really large being. Searching online, one can find a number of Native American names—enough to fill up a list all by themselves.  

Cain, Brother of Abel—in the 1800s, a Mormon farmer claimed that while riding into town on horseback, he was approached by a Bigfoot that simply walked along beside him and struck up a conversation, revealing itself as Cain, the brother of Abel, cursed to walk the Earth for eternity in punishment for the Biblical slaying of his brother.

E.T. (Extraterrestrial)—while there’s probably no accounts of a Bigfoot trying to phone home, there are multiple accounts of Bigfoots in and around areas at the same time as UFO sightings. Some reports describe Bigfoots fleeing from orbs, or driving them away. These accounts have led to theories that the big man is not of this Earth, or maybe even of this dimension.

The Fouke Monster—also known as the Boggy Creek monster, this cryptid was made famous in 1972 with the release of the movie “The Legend of Boggy Creek”, which puts the creature in Southern Arkansas.

Gigantopithecus—believed to have lived in Asia as recently as 100,000 years ago, this extinct primate closely resembles (skeletally) the famous cryptid described around the world.

Grassman—One of the most surprising places to have Bigfoot sightings is the very-developed state of Ohio, where the Grassman has been reported on multiple occasions.

Harry (Henderson)—Portrayed by the late Kevin Peter Hall (who was also the Predator in two films), Harry, as his adopted family called him, was the titular character of the popular 1987 film Harry and the Hendersons, in which a family strikes a Bigfoot with their car, thinks he’s dead, and takes the body home as a trophy, only to find the lovable creature was merely knocked out.

Mapinguari—hailing from South America, this elusive cryptid is believed by some to be another incarnation of Bigfoot, while others tie the name to an extant giant sloth.

Nun Yunu Wi—for the Cherokee, Bigfoot is Nun Yunu Wi, “the stone man”, or Kecleh-Kudleh, hairy man.

Oh Mah—for the Hoopa Indians, the Oh Mah was the “Boss of the Woods”.

Orang-Mawas—a creature of Malaysian folklore, said to be 10 ft tall and covered in black fur, that feeds on fish and raids orchards. Also known as the Orang Dalam.

Patty—Made famous by the Patterson-Gimlin film of 1967, Patty received her name after it was determined the Bigfoot in the film was actually a female.

Roussimoff, André René—before he rose to international fame as the wrestler known as Andre the Giant, Andre Roussimoff also had a turn as “Bigfoot” in several episodes of the Six Million Dollar Man TV series in the 1970s. This particular Bigfoot was (in the show) not a cryptid, but a complicated android built by a marooned race of aliens who had crashed on Earth and used the cyborg to scare aware intruders from their hidden base. The character was so popular, Kenner added an action figure of it to their Bionic toyline.

Sasquatch—first used in 1920 by British Columbian school teacher J.W. Burns, this widely-known name for Bigfoot is based on the Halkomelem word sásq’ets, or “wild man.”

Skookum—among the Chinook of North America, there is the Skookum, or Evil Giant of the Woods.

Skunkape—the Myakka Skunkape, often simply referred to as the Skunkape, hails from Florida, North Carolina, and Arkansas, and gets its name from its appearance and the unpleasant odor reported to accompany it.

Woodwose—a lesser known, out-of-use name for Bigfoot in Europe was Woodwose, a common Middle English term, for a “hairy man”. In Old English, it was wudu-wāsa or wude-wāsa, which may mean an abandoned person or a forlorn person, and may come the German “Waise” and Dutch “wees” which both mean “orphan.”

Yeren—Chinese for Man-Monkey the Yeren is said to reside in the remote mountainous, forested regions of western Hubei.

Yeti—also known as the Abominable Snowman, the Yeti is hails from the region of Nepal and Tibet, and was popularized by explorers in the region in the nineteenth century.

Yowie—even the land Down Under is no stranger to Bigfoot, with the howling cryptid popularly referred to as a Yowie. It also has a variety of other local names, including: Ghindaring, Jurrawarra, Myngawin, Puttikan, Doolaga, Gulaga, Thoolagal, Yaroma, Noocoonah, Wawee, Pangkarlangu, Jimbra and Tjangara.

Author’s Note: This list is by no means all-inclusive, but is an overview of some of the more common names of Bigfoot. Readers who want to share another name for Bigfoot are encouraged to leave it in the comments below.