Richard Noll's Interview with Dr. Grover Krantz

July 1, 2000
Text Portion only:

Interview with Dr. Grover Krantz, Retired Professor of Anthropology, Researcher and Author on the Sasquatch phenomena; at his home, outside of Port Angeles, Washington State

Note: This Interview with Dr. Grover Krantz concerns his experience with the Sasquatch phenomenon over the years. The purpose of this interview was material related for a book on tools and methods used in hunting for Sasquatch and to cast Dr. Krantz's foot. I spent about 4 hours with him and purchased both the left and right footprint casts of the Bossburg find. These I plan to use in showing people that have seen or found something and want to look at what is thought to be real Sasquatch footprints. A butcher in Colville originally cast the prints in late 1969. Dr. Krantz uses a rubber mold and makes duplicates he sells for $20 - $25 each. Interviewed by: Richard Noll

Rick: "Right now there are at least 100 people in Washington that are actively searching for the Sasquatch using various methods that they think are the right way. (Grover rolls his eyes as if in disbelief, catching me off guard) Ah... do you have a recommendation on a method or tactic that they should use, either separately or together?

Dr. Krantz: "Well my favorite method since I am looking to solve the problem, and that requires a body, is to drive back roads at night, between midnight and dawn with the rifle at the ready. Preferably, that should be two people, one driving and with an available spotlight, the other passenger with the gun. When they see a Sasquatch on the road in the headlights, stop, driver gets out with the spotlight on it, the other person brings up the gun. Umm... with enough people, this will get success before too long (in an earlier conversation Dr. Krantz specified about twenty of these groups might be needed). Ahmm... unfortunately, I refer to these as 'Kill Squads', and the ah publicity would be ah devastating, which we would work that out. I've done it myself but I don't know if anyone else..."

Rick: "I have". (laugh).

Rick: "Ok... ah that brings up the next question which is do you have any favorite areas? Lets try and keep it to Washington State because I personally can't... logistically or economically handle much more territory than that."

Dr. Krantz: "Timbered areas, you know if there is a reasonable stand of trees so it's not open wheat fields, grasses or deserts. Ahmm.. There is a reasonable chance of a Sasquatch being there. The difference between, in my experience, between Northern Idaho and Western Washington is that the environments look comparable, I suspect there is a similar concentration of Bigfoot, but ah perhaps 10 or a 100 times as many reports from Western Washington. That is not because of Sasquatch activity, that is because of human attitude. In Northern Idaho, people see something; they shut up about it. The last person they are going to tell about it is some strange city dude from Western Washington where somebody sees something, a Sasquatch, they come screaming out of the hill's yelling at everybody about it."

Rick: "Hmm. (so much for Washington State.)"

Dr. Krantz: "So my preferred area is Northern Idaho."

Rick: "What about elevation? Any particular elevation?"

Dr. Krantz: "No. Ahh elevation from sea level to as high as the trees go...(unintelligible). Though I would venture to guess, and that is all it is, is a guess, that during the colder seasons I would go for lower elevation and the hottest, I'd go for the highest."

Rick: "Ahh Ok. Ahh... any particular time of year?"

Dr. Krantz: "Time of year. I would say, ahh just go for what ever is comfortable for you. These things do not hibernate. I know that, early on when John Green studied his records, he found that ahh during January, February and March there was a low there at times, but they did occur. Ahh since that doesn't correspond exactly with winter, I thought about that for awhile and realized that during December, there is a lot of people out doing last minute things, getting ready for winter. Winter hasn't set in with a vengeance yet so they still see them.

In March, when things are starting to thaw out, ah people are still holed up because ah all the dirt roads are mud covered so they don't get out very ahh rapidly. So the worst months of winter do not correspond to lows of Sasquatch sightings, there shifted a little bit. Again, that's human activity. And there are fewer Sasquatch, only half as much are seen through winter or reported, and that is simply because there are fewer people out there."

Rick: "Ok... ah do you have a list of must have equipment that a researcher should never be without while looking for one..?"

Dr. Krantz: "Depends on what you are trying to retrieve. If you're into it for a photograph, obviously you have to have a camera, if you're into it for footprint casts you obviously have to have plaster and all the accoutrements that go with it. If you're after proof of the animal, forget your camera and you can forget your footprint ... material. Ah... get the biggest gun you can (Rick laughs), a very sharp knife for either skinning it or cutting it into segments, or taking off some parts to bring back first. I've mentioned plastic garbage bags to stuff it into, for it most likely will smell pretty bad."

Rick: "Ok. If someone does kill a Sasquatch and they contact you, would you consider going into partnership with them to do what ahh... ever comes next?"

Dr. Krantz: "I would go into partnership, or make any sort of deal that is necessary, yeah."

Rick: "OK. Ummm... Besides a Physical Anthropologist, who else in the scientific community could put their seal of approval on it's (Sasquatch) existence?"

Dr. Krantz: "Ummm... Full approval could be done by any competent Mammalian Biologist or Zoologist. Now preferably he should be a Primatologist who deals with primates rather than somebody that deals with bears and dogs, but ah... any good Zoologist should be able to handle the... (unintelligible). A Physical Anthropologist would be a nice one to get, but ahh you might have trouble getting one to go out there. Most of the Physical Anthropologist are already on record as denying the existence of the animal. An expert in bears or shrews or something, is totally outside of his field. He may not even have thought about it but wouldn't have denied it. Now all of the Physical Anthropologists, even if they haven't specifically said there is no such thing as a Sasquatch, they will have taught in their classes the list of all living primates, Sasquatch is not on the list. So it is a side ways of denying it and since that's their opinion their going to be very reluctant to back track and eat crow so to speak."

Rick: "Well...ahh you ahh hmm have said that it is real, and you're a Physical Anthropologist but it's still not accepted so is there, is it just, its not just one person that can say this, it has to be a body doesn't it?"

Dr. Krantz: "Right. Ahmm... there is no official body that could..."

Rick: "Oh ok."

Dr. Krantz: "... do this, but ahmm if I were to have access to the specimen or have an influence to say or recommend what is done, I would ahmm go from myself, who's willing to look at it, first to a few other Physical Anthropologists who at least have open minds who might be willing to come look at it. Simply put, some of the open minded people will be willing to come look at it. Getting and gotten a statement from them, then maybe some of the mild skeptics might come and look at it. When they make official statements, then the hard nose skeptics might come. But ah... if I had access to a Sasquatch and I were to call up, say to a Physical Anthropologist like Millford Wallpot, a very prominent fellow, he would under no circum... no, no, well, he would absolutely tell me to go straight to hell in a hand cart. (rick laughs) He would not even find out where the thing was. He is so convinced these things don't exist."

Rick: "Oh is he the guy that's been on TV?"

Dr. Krantz: "Might be the same one, ah but not on Sasquatch interviews, but I think on evolutionary ones."

Rick: "...Ok next question. That was good. If you had things to do over hind sight being what it is 20-20, would you do anything different than what you've done? Concerning Bigfoot. (laugh)"

Dr. Krantz: "Not in any materially different way. I'd do essentially the same thing. Ahm... if I had it to do over, that means that from the outset that I would be convinced that they are real. But I wasn't convinced right at first, it took ahh... careful study of the first set of footprints before I was satisfied they were real. Oh and I'd have altered the writing of a few of my papers. I would of sent them to journals that would publish them, instead of getting 10 rejections. Ummm... but basically I'd of done the same thing."

Rick: "Ok. How long have you been involved with the Sasquatch?"

Dr. Krantz: "I was mildly involved as early as 1964. I was in Berkley then and I was curious about the ahmm... reports from Northern California. Went to the effort of driving up there once. Believe it was the summer of '64 but might have been '65. Didn't find anything with any consequence ahh... so I set it aside. When I came to Washington State University, at, that was in '68, Patterson had recently gotten his movie. And I was quite curious about it... I gave it a 10% chance of being real, but I was curious. Saw the movie and decided I'd like to find out more about it, because even though I was highly dubious of it I wanted to know for sure."

Rick: "How did you see the movie?"

Dr. Krantz: "It was taken around to small towns... you paid a couple of bucks or something. Ahh... either Patterson or one of his colleges, who I saw, gave a little talk about it and then showed Patterson's documentary he was making, after came the footage of the Sasquatch. Ahh, a little later...very early 1970 when the Bossburg crippled foot tracks showed up, I made it a point to dash up there and see what I could find out about studying it for awhile. Went up there a second time, still in the winter, and ahm just by pure dumb chance I ran into John Green. He was there, with notebook or something, I don't know exactly what. I was there with a couple of friends. And he had covered up a lot of the footprints with cardboard, paper and whatever, from the snow. And each time he came down he would uncover one more print for some visiting person."

Rick: "Nice of him."

Dr. Krantz: "The very last one... the crippled foot, he uncovered for me when I was there."

Rick: "And that was in snow?"

Dr. Krantz: "Yes. So me and my friends made a cast of that and we still got it."

Rick: "How did you make the cast in snow?"

Dr. Krantz: "Just poured... ahmm mixed the plaster and poured it in. Everybody seems to think you can't make plaster casts in snow but you sure can. Ahmm we made that one and it turned out fine. I made plaster casts of my first Irish Wolfhound's footprints in snow, and everyone said you can't do it and so I tried it; worked perfectly. When the plaster is starting to set, it warms up considerably but it is already set to a degree where it is not going to move."

Rick: "Well, I think that is one of the things they say is a problem (talking about the generated heat). But I think the main problem is water in the plaster freezing, and not curing the plaster itself. And so what happens, I have seen it, the print has a bunch of dry spots afterwards, it just gets riddled. But if you mix a 5% solution of Potassium sulfate with the plaster, it lowers the freezing temperature of the water in the plaster and allows it to set up. But that is in really cold environments."

Dr. Krantz: "Yeah... I suspect I didn't run into that problem with the dogs footprints or the ahh Sasquatch track because the temperature of the air around was probably above freezing, and the snow was just barely."

Rick: "That's an excellent cast for being in snow."

Dr. Krantz: "Oh... that one you saw here is not from that."

Rick: "Oh..."

Dr. Krantz: "That one was taken in late '69. The previous event, where the same individual came through, ahh and it was in soft dirt, not snow. Somebody up in Colville, butcher by trade, made the two casts. Rene Dahinden has the originals. But somebody put those in a very fine bed of dirt and made copies of them, and I was able to get a hold of those and borrow them and make the molds."

Rick: "Ahhmm did you see any difference in the bone structure between the print that you saw the year before or years before and the ones you got casts of? Like maybe further deterioration or something over the years?"

Dr. Krantz: "Oh no. Basically the same anatomy, late '69 versus early '70. But when I was up there in, near Bossburg, I talked to an old farmer, who said that he had seen tracks just like that 20 years before. And some years after, I can't remember if it was 6 years or 10 years, a very excited student came down to talk to me and he had been up in that area and he saw tracks that exactly matched that."

Rick: "So that leads to the question of how long do you think one of these creatures could live?"

Dr. Krantz: "Well, unless I have some reason to think contrary, say they live life as the great apes do, which would be about 40 years. So 30 years as an adult."

Rick: "So this one has ahh... kicked the bucket."

Dr. Krantz: "Well after that last student, by the way his name was Gary Larsen, I suspect he was the cartoonist. I know THE Gary Larson was a student of the Washington State University. Must have taken a class from me because he had a lot of anthropology in some of his jokes. (rick laughs) So a guy named Gary Larsen tells me about the print, (as if talking to himself) it had to be him."

Rick: "And that individual hasn't been, the footprints haven't been seen since?"

Dr. Krantz: "No. So that last event was probably near the end of it's life."

Rick: "What percentage of your involvement have you gone into the woods and reviewed evidence or searched for it?"

Dr. Krantz: "Very very little. I'm not a woodsman, a hunter or a tracker. I'm an academic, just studying skull remains. Umm, I'm also not a notable physiologist, so I'm not sure how good I am at interviewing people. I think I'm pretty good but not perfect. So the work that I've put into it has been mostly making other casts, reconstructing feet, analyzing foot structure, walking procedures. All that I put in to it is less than 10%."

Rick: "In the field?"

Dr. Krantz: "In the field."

Rick: "Well, Ok you mentioned lab work, how much... what percentage in lab work would you say...?"

Dr. Krantz: "Half of it."

Rick: "5% or 50%?"

Dr. Krantz: "50%."

End Note: Dr. Grover Krantz has been involved with the Sasquatch since 1965, giving it all about a 10% chance of being real, but in early 1970, with the Bossburg cripple foot, not the Patterson film a few years before, he quickly switched over to believing it is 100% real, making him a 30 year veteran. Since then he has detailed the cripple foot bone structure and discovered dermal ridges and skin folds on other reported to be Sasquatch casts. He has authored numerous articles and two books.*

When Dr. Grover Krantz is no longer around, he will be missed for who else will really take the time to study stuff we bring back out of the woods? This, his books and the photographs I took, will be the only thing I have to prove his existence.

© Richard Noll, W/permission. March 17, 2002
Dr. Krantz passed away February 14, 2002.

- ---

*Krantz, Grover "Big Footprints, A scientific Inquiry into the reality of Sasquatch" 1992, 1999

*Krantz, Dr. Grover S. "Bigfoot Sasquatch Evidence" 1999 revised second edition

*Krantz, G .S. 1971 "Sasquatch handprints" Northwest Anthropological Research Notes, (2):145-151.

*Krantz, Dr. Grover S. "The Sasquatch and other Unknown Hominoids" with Vladimir Markotic, editor; Krantz, associate editor.

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