Mt. Ida, Montgomery County, Arkansas 2002
late winter of 2002 near twilight
imbered mountains in the Ouachita National Forest; Mountainside slope covered with old-growth pine and hardwood timber and sparse undergrowth.
Nearest Lakes or Streams: Near the head of Martin Creek, and about two miles northwest of the South Fork of the Ouachita River.
Witness Profile: The witness is a 73 year old male who resides in Mt. Ida, AR. He has resided in the Ouachita Mountains of Western Arkansas since birth. He worked as a timber cutter most of his adult life, but was forced to retire a few years ago when he developed knee joint problems which prevents him from walking in rough terrain.
Activities of Witness Prior to Encounter/Incident: He had driven his pickup truck about 2.5 miles west of Mt. Ida on Highway 270 to a point where some pine timber damaged by a recent ice storm was being salvaged by a logging crew. The crew had left for the day and he drove a few yards off the highway onto the newly made ungraded truck road the crew was using to access the highway.
Details of Encounter / Incident: The witness parked and got out of his truck. He walked a few yards from the truck and stopped to relieve himself. Just as he stopped, he saw a large dark colored animal arise from its place of concealment behind a large pine log along the southwest side of the logging road. The animal arose and immediately began running in a northeasterly direction across the log road in front of the witness. The witness stated that from the time the animal arose from behind the log it was on two feet, and it ran down the mountainside at a speed which seemed incredibly fast.
Description of Animal: The witness stated he was within 40 yards of the animal when it arose and he had an open view of it when it crossed the log road. He was also able to clearly see it as it ran through the large openings in remaining timber. He stated the creature was about five feet tall and covered with dark hair. He said it had the overall shape of a stocky human, except that it appeared to have no neck, and its head was the size and shape of a hair-covered football helmet. The witness was astounded at the animal's speed as it fled down the side of the mountain. He stated that no human, nor any other animal he had ever seen could have moved as fast as this one. He stated he could not see any facial features because of the bright twilight sky behind the animal It appeared to the witness that the animal's arms were noticeably longer in proportion to its height than those of a human of the same height. The witness did not see breasts to indicate the creature was a mature female, nor did he see any genitalia.
Other Details: The investigator recorded the initial account of this encounter in the town of Mt. Ida. During that interview the witness was specifically asked to describe the encounter site in detail. Two days later the investigator drove the witness to the site, parked in the reported location, and walked with the witness a few yards to a large standing pine tree where he stated he had stopped to relieve himself. The investigator was impressed by the fact that the man's previous description of the site was remarkably accurate, and the large pine log the animal reportedly used for concealment was still there. The only discrepancy in his description of the site was that he would have been only about 25 yards from the animal when it stood up, rather than the 40 yards that he had initially estimated.
Historical Notes: The witness stated that about one year prior to the above described encounter, he had driven to a small fishing pond at the end of the short National Forest Road #7434. That short road turns west off of NFR #37 about 1/4 mile south of Highway 270. NFR #37 intersects Highway 270 about 0.5 miles from the encounter site described in this report. The witness stated he had parked at the pond late one afternoon just before dark, and was again in the process of using the great outdoors as a great outhouse. Just as he squatted for that purpose, he said that the silence of the area was suddenly shattered by the deafening sounds of two large animals fighting on the mountainside about 300 yard above the pond. He stated the sounds initially included roaring, snarling, bellowing and deep loud growls. The witness stated that he quickly forgot about his intended purpose for being there, and immediately began pulling up his clothes as he hurried to his truck. He stated that before he reached the truck he could hear amid the other sounds of fighting the sounds of large rocks being thrown or kicked off the mountainside. The man left in his truck as fast as possible, and he did not return to the site to look for tracks or other evidence to identify the animals involved in the fight. He did state that he initially thought the fight involved black bears, but after thinking about it he concluded the sounds were not similar to those made by bears.
(Investigator's Note: After inspecting the hillside above the pond on December 20, 2005 the investigator found there are no outcrops of large rock that are broken and loose enough to have been dislodged by kicking them. Most of the large rocks that have been broken loose from the solid outcrops over time are now securely embedded in the soil and smaller cobble on the slope surface. There are in fact a few larger rocks that are lying on old forest litter, but the investigator was unable to find matching depressions in the ground in nearby areas to indicate where the rock had been originally. Those areas have of course been covered with four years of duff since the sounds were heard by the witness.) In an area about 4 miles from both those areas described above, there have been repeated reports of a group of bipedal primates which have purportedly attempted to enter a residence by force, and which have also purportedly killed small family pets.
The investigator has not yet been convinced these reports are credible, although he has not yet decided to totally discount them.
Tal H. Branco, Field Researcher/Investigator, The RFP Research Project
Portions of this website are reprinted and sometimes edited to fit the standards