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Gila County, Eastern Arizona.
Payson Mogollon Rim Country

1998, Autumn 11:00am

Payson, AZ. Up on the Mogollon Rim, possibly Tonto National Forest. Remote area and was surrounded by three different lakes.

It was about three years ago during the summer at around 11:00 a.m., in the morning when the sighting occurred. We were up past the Payson, Arizona area. Up on Mogollon Rim in what I think is the Tonto National Forest (I could be wrong on the forest name though, very high elevation). The area of the forest was remote, and surrounded by three different lakes. It was hot and I don't remember any wind. We were going camping and decided to leave the populated camping areas and go farther into the woods. We drove and drove and finally ran out of road. I wasn't just in the forest when I saw it, but at least 15 miles further back off the beaten path. Truly "no man's land" and obviously, HIS land.

We decided to turn around, but I wanted to walk our dog for a few minutes and enjoy the scenery. I spotted something heading my direction, only walking at an angle to my right (meaning we would have to cross paths). It was about half of a football field away from me and all I could see were the legs because it was so tall and the tree limbs were so low. You would picture a Bigfoot as dark brown or black, but this was the most beautiful light caramel color. I remember immediately thinking, "What a beautiful palomino horse!" Then I suddenly realized that a horse has four legs and all I could see were two very long legs taking long strides.

I stopped walking and tried to rationalize where the back legs of this horse were and eventually realized that it had only two legs no matter how hard I stared at it. Your mind does funny things and I kept trying to think of a two-legged animal that would have legs that long. An elk will hop when fighting on its back legs, but again this was striding (like a human). A bear can walk on its hind legs, but their legs are not long and lean and again wouldn't have such long smooth strides. I can think of nothing and the first thought that did come to mind and stuck with me….stuck so hard that I lost my breath was a Sasquatch. I felt very uneasy (remember this has all taken place in a matter of less then thirty seconds) and this thing is getting closer, so I turned around and started walking/jogging for my truck. I noticed the creature a good thirty seconds before my dog did. I remember that because I kept thinking, "Oh no. If she's sees this, she'll chase it." At that time I turned, my female lab (Chelsea) came to a full stop and lifted her head and growled. I could see her nose move and at that moment, I could still see it walking to my right (at diagonal direction) and it hadn't slowed or paused. If it saw us, it gave no indication at all. Chelsea barked, turned and ran like heck towards it. I believe she could see it at this point. As scared, as I was, all I could think was, "It'll kill my dog." Whether it would have or not, I don't know. There was also a thought in my mind that if my dog caught up to it, then it may catch up to me if it felt like it. That's when I knelt and used my "playful" voice to call to my dog. She loves that voice and when I saw I had her attention I yelled "Come get mommy!" (sounds dumb I know) and I started running again. She hesitated before choosing to chase me instead…. but in the end she did come after me.

I didn't smell anything like my dog did, (maybe I was close enough?) but I was so scared, that the air around me seemed electric. The thing I can't stress enough was how beautiful its fur was. The caramel/blonde tone was so rich that I'm sure that's how I spotted it. Had it been dark, it would have blended more with the surroundings and I may have not noticed it. It walked twice as fast as any man. Again, that's what originally prompted me to originally think I was seeing a horse. And as I stated, that thought left the minute I realized there were only two legs. I can't imagine it didn't see or hear us. If a dog can sense it, I'm sure it sensed us right back…but it never slowed, never changed pace, never paused or stopped. It didn't change direction either. I can't remember ever being that scared.

I got to my truck and screamed at my husband to get in. We drove off quickly while I told him the story. He didn't believe me, and he can't tell me what it "actually was", but yet doesn't believe me anyway. I didn't see the full thing, but judging from its legs and from the height of the lowest branches on the tress, that it would have been seven to eight feet tall. I have no idea how tall these things are supposed to be, I have no other explanation of what it could have been.

Follow-up Investigation by Research Investigator Dave Sidoti, Florida.

Mrs. S contacted me through my E-mail address about her encounter. I have conducted an on going conversation with her about her encounter and find that she seems very credible in her story. Mrs. S was taking her dog for a walk when she encountered something walking on two legs, and first thought that it was a horse. Mrs. S has told me that she lived in Oregon her entire life and had never come across anything like this there, yet heard stories when younger, never older. She said when she had her encounter, it was the first and only thought she had on the subject since she was young. Mrs. S said that after she told her husband what she saw, she tried to tell herself that she saw something else…something more reasonable, but couldn't. Mrs. S also told me on other occasions when they were camping she's heard horrible screams/yells at night and when I panic, my husband just says, "It's probably elk or mating season." She said that she's heard elk and elk don't sound like a woman who's being killed. She said this had a female high pitch sound. I believe that Mrs. S had seen what might have been a Sasquatch when out walking.

Report Submitted by witness Mrs. S. on May 22, 2001 to researcher Dave Sidoti, Florida
Posted to the_Sasquatch_list Wednesday, September 25, 2002 9:37 PM