Bigfoot Encounters

The Strange "Rock Apes" of Vietnam...

Vietnam: -the ‘Rock Apes’ of Quang Tri, Thua Thien and Quang Nam Provinces, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

American soldiers used the jargon ‘rock apes’ during the 1960 and ‘70’s Vietnam conflict, which described an unknown (to them) creature, about a meter to a meter and a half tall, (one meter = 3.28 feet) resembling an hair-covered ape with the exception it was larger than an ape, less hairy, tail-less and to their great surprised, they walked upright and did so in a unexpected normal human way.

In an alternate military unit, a former GI wrote using the term ‘Powell’s ape,’ after one of the creatures wandered into a restricted zone during the middle of the night. “All hell broke loose when the dark figure continued to advance into the far end of the restricted zone, it was fired upon.” (Powell was the name of the platoon leader). “When daylight came, we realized we had blown the living shit out of a large ape, it was a male with the face of a wild man and not much else left of it to describe of the stinkin’ thing. We poured fuel over the remains and set it afire.” (From the 1995 Nam bulletin board)

Another GI offered this description: ”An oblong head framed the hair-covered face. Dark, deep-set eyes lay beneath a prominent brow, and they did nothing to complement the heavy jowls and angry mouth. As it stepped into a small clearing, Linderer could see that matted reddish-brown hair ran down the creature's neck and covered most of its body. Whatever it was, it stood at least five feet tall, had broad shoulders, long thick muscular arms, and a heavy torso, it walked upright."

In the small clearing, it stopped and studied the Americans. "What the hell is that?" someone called out from behind Linderer. "It's a rock ape," said another member of the squad. Another team member disagreed. "No, it ain't," he said. "I've seen rock apes, and that sure as hell isn't a rock ape!" "It's an orangutan, well isn't it?" Linderer asked while the others kept their eyes glued on the strange creature. "Well, if it is, then he can't read a map. There are no orangutans in Vietnam." (Jorgenson) Note: Orangutans in the wild don’t walk upright as a normal course of behavior and rarely are they terrestrial. At night the orangs nest in trees, they wouldn’t be walking upright about a clearing at night, …too many tigers prowling about. The only populations of orangs are found in Sumatra and Borneo.

As an aside, there are small tail-less monkeys known as the Barbary Macaques found in Morocco and Algeria, these have at times been called “rock apes.” Also the apes on Gibraltar are known as “rock apes.” It is important to note that these Barbary Macaque adults are much too small to fit the description soldiers gave, plus they are quadrupeds, they nest at night and they wouldn’t be walking through a military base at night.

If not an identifiable primate, then what was it these soldiers saw?

Jorgenson, Kregg “P.J.,” 2001 “Excerpt from “Strange but True Stories of the Vietnam War --Very Crazy G.I.” Ballantine Book Publishing Company pages 33-36 ... and eleven years worth of correspondence from many who tell the same story...

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