Bigfoot Encounters

Book Review: The Best of Sasquatch Bigfoot
by author John Green
Review by Daniel Perez

Green, John Willison. The Best Of Sasquatch Bigfoot, Hancock House Publisher, 1431 Harrison Avenue, Blaine, Washington 98230-50005. 143 pages, October 2004 publication. $16.95 U.S.; $19.95 Canadian; paperback. ISBN: 0-88839-546-9. Black and white pictures, maps, illustrations, index. Telephone: (800) 938-1114. Website: E-mail:

Veteran Bigfoot author and researcher, John Green, from Harrison Hot Springs, British Columbia is out with his latest offering, The Best Of Sasquatch Bigfoot, which is essentially a compilation of two of his earlier works, On The Track Of The Sasquatch and Encounters With Bigfoot. The format of the book is 8.5 inches by 11 inches. Mr. Green’s keen ability to write clearly and the illustrations and pictures make this book easy to pick up and digest.

The handsome cover of this tome proclaims, “The latest scientific developments,” and what is new this time around is four chapters: 1.The Ape And the IM [Intermembral Index] Index, 2.Recent Developments, 3.Big Foot Did Not Die, and 4.$100,000 Reward.

In his opening chapter Mr. Green states, “Proof that a bipedal ape shares this continent with humanity is apparently considered so a big a story that it can’t possibly be true. The headlines now are reserved for stories of the opposite kind, claims of proof that the Bigfoot tracks and the [1967] movie were just fakes after all.” For those who have casually followed the Sasquatch story throughout the years without a body every being collected, news of fake tracks or whatever the case may be is usually reinforcement the whole Sasquatch story is bogus. For those who have intently watched the Sasquatch saga unfold over the years, it is clear there is a genuine mystery afoot.

In chapter 1, The Ape And The IM Index, John Green addresses a recent claim that the famous subject, “Patty,” in the famous Patterson-Gimlin 16-millimeter film, was just a masquerade, nothing more than a man in a gorilla costume. He does well in clearing up all the recent nonsense about the issue but deliberately avoids (so as not to give them further publicity) specifics about the book in question and the man in the gorilla costume. Green’s vagueness is very specific: “…a book was published in which the author claimed to have found the man who wore the ape suit…” when I think he would have been better off with completeness: Greg Long penned the dross, The Making Of Bigfoot, in which he contends a one Bob Heironimus was the man in the suit in the P-G film.

The IM Index, in its most generalized terms is the ratio or relationship between the length of the legs and arms and is used in discussion about primates. For instance, gorillas have an index in the order of 117; the average Joe, like you and me, that number is roughly 70. The IM Index for the subject in the P-G film, using sophisticated forensic animation software to measure the arms and legs, is between 85 and 90, clearly unlike the gorillas and by the same token unlike man as well. It is this powerful argument, using a scientific tool, the IM Index, that Mr. Green uses, and very effectively I might add, to absolutely demolish the notion the P-G film just portrays a costumed man. It is true that many who have dabbled in the Sasquatch studies have toyed with the numbers…length of leg, arm, etc., but Green alone takes credit for making the case for the Sasquatch with the IM Index.

The Bigfoot body casting, collected in the Summer of 2000 in Washington state is discussed in a very positive manner. Dr. Daris Swindler, a retired anthropologist, stated without reservation, “in my opinion the impression is not made by a deer, a bear or an elk nor was it made artificially. The Skookum body cast is that of an unknown hominoid primate.”

At the end of 2002 Ray Wallace from Toledo, Washington died and the mainstream media put out a story essentially saying that Ray Wallace was the creator of Bigfoot, having laid many fake Bigfoot tracks in northern California with his strap-on wooden feet. Here, what you have to understand is the mainstream media of today is not like the media from a long time ago. Today, media is concerned with sensational stories that bring viewers and ratings. Ratings, in turn, is the engine which drives paying advertisers and it would seem that is their number one concern. Author Green absolutely dismantles Ray Wallace and his foolish claims and Mr. Wallace, in his own words: “I have talked to the Big Foots many times they didn’t understand me and I didn’t understand them,” further diminishes his own credibility.

Further to the Ray Wallace fiasco, Green would write, “demonstrations were put on for both CNN and FOX News in which their own people, walking on fiberglass copies of genuine 15” tracks, learned that deep tracks can’t be made in firm sand that way, even, in the case of CNN, by two men weighing a combined 440 pounds.” Of course, CNN didn't carry that non-story, instead the story was Sasquatch researchers refused to recognize the reality of the Wallace claims. So much for an unbiased press.

We are indebted to have someone like John Green to be writing on the Bigfoot topic with clarity, depth, not to mention longevity. In 1961, forty-three years ago (!) the late Ivan Sanderson wrote about a much younger Green with, “this priceless document was unearthed by the indefatigable John Green of the Agassiz-Harrison Advance…”

Also new to this book is the $100,000 dollar reward “for anyone who can demonstrate how the ‘Bigfoot’ tracks that were observed in the Bluff Creek valley in northern California in 1958 and later could have been made by a human or humans.” To date no one has managed to collect the reward.

In closing, this work by John Green is a nice stroll down memory lane, with the classics revisited, like Albert Ostman’s alleged abduction and Fred Beck’s attack by Sasquatches in Ape Canyon. Mr. Green has always been big on coupling the Sasquatch with science, and rightly so. It is a serious topic and one with tremendous importance and possibly unbelievable implications, worthy of more than just tabloid fodder.

However, the unemotional John Green fails to cover the people aspect, the human side of the Sasquatch hunt. He could have, for instance, written quite extensively about his late friend, bigfoot hunter Bob Titmus, who lived for many years just walking distance from Green’s residence. And of his up but mostly down relationship with possibly the most famous Bigfooter of all time, the late Rene Dahinden.

Readers want to know what Titmus was like and the same for Dahinden. Oh well, perhaps another book, another author. For now, however, John Willison Green, author of many works on the sasquatch studies, has certainly cemented his place in history for having the willingness to go forward no matter what the cost.

Book Review by Daniel Perez, 10926 Milano Avenue, Norwalk, California 90650-1638. Telephone: (951) 509-2951. E-mail: October 2004.

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