Bigfoot Encounters

Rumors of Bigfoot Roaming in
Cherokee County Oklahoma

By Associated Press

August 15, 1990

TAHLEQUAH, Oklahoma -- A noise behind a house and a tall, hairy creature ambling toward the woods have rumors flying once again that Big-foot is on the loose in Cherokee County.

A state wildlife official said the culprit is more likely a bear, but that hasn't stopped telephone lines from lighting up at the Sheriff's Department.

"I heard they had at least two calls last night,' said a sheriff's dispatcher, who declined to give her name. "In the last month, there's probably been about four calls a week.'

Undersheriff Dan Garber said the hairy creature was first sighted Aug. 1 close to a mobile home about 10 miles east of Tahlequah near the Adair County line.

One week later, authorities got another report of the creature at a house about three miles to the east.

Undersheriff Garber said a woman who lives in the mobile home reported a noise and a "horrible smell.' She said she spotted the creature from the window, he said.

"She estimated it to be 10 feet tall and about 400 pounds,' the under-sheriff said. "It was by her trailer and it took off into the woods.'

Deputy Joe Weavel, who investigated the reports, said he found several footprints where the creature was spotted.

"They were pretty good size,' Deputy Weavel said. "I could stick both my feet side by side into the track.'

Undersheriff Garber said an 8-year-old girl and her mother reported seeing the creature near a trash heap behind the house last week.

"The mother said it stood up and walked down a hill away from the house,' he said. "Their dog ran out into the woods after it and ran back with his tail between his legs.'

Undersheriff Garber said the girl and her mother described it as 8 feet tall with frizzy hair.

"It has a lot of similarities to a bear, but what is unusual is that it's always described as walking on its feet,' the under-sheriff said.

Deputy Weavel said the girl described the creature as having hair on its body and skin on its face.

Joe Adair, district chief of the Oklahoma Wildlife Department, said he has received several calls about the animal.

"I believe it's a bear, but I have nothing to base that on,' Mr. Adair said. "I don't believe it is a Bigfoot.'

He said that bears can rear up on their hind legs but that it is unusual for them to walk that way for long.

Undersheriff Garber said Big-foot sightings are not rare in Cherokee County. He said a creature sighted in the early 1970s caused a "big ruckus.'

This time is not much different. He said people across the county are talking about the sightings.

"About half the people think it's a bear,' he said, "and the other half is kind of fascinated by the idea that it's a Bigfoot.'

Copyright The Dallas Morning News

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