Jan 6

My grandfather’s story and my experience in LBL

A listener writes “Hello Wes, I’m a listener, subscriber and SC member and wanted to write to you about my personal experiences along with my family’s history concerning these creatures.

You have to understand that I was raised in a pretty conservative family, things of bigfoot nature were essentially frowned upon never being entertained longer than a playful consideration however, the incident at my grandfather’s farm is never chuckled off. The nostalgic episode dies in silence among my older family members as soon as it is recalled due to the seriousness of its perplexity. You see, my grandfather was known for his practical means and quiet demeanor thus when he spoke you listened. Outside of every individual’s general idiosyncratic ways that ultimately define them my great-grandfather was nothing unassuming or peculiar.

My great-grandfather had a farm in Cedar Vale, Kansas and this property had a bit of history for the unusual. Most of the stories were told to me by my grandmother (the daughter in law of my great grandfather) much to our (my siblings & I) sleep’s demise and although she had a tendency to embellish, everything I’m telling you was further affirmed by other family members and my mother & father. Almost mediocre horror movie-esque happenings occurred on this property from a tree scratching on the window at night to only find there was no tree in the morning to returning home to find 20+ year old valentines on the kitchen table with the room smelling of fresh cigars even though everyone was in town together. Even one of my father’s second cousins moved a trailer on the property but left some time later claiming to have had red eyes observe her from the window her while she showered. And when I say she left I mean she abandoned all her belongings and never went back to the trailer. But these aren’t the stories I wanted to emphasize, merely some other highlights from the property’s history of the conspicuous.

My great-grandfather had been having issues with an animal(s) pilfering yields from his garden so he installed an iron sort of enclosure as a deterrent. Along with the missing vegetation they were frequented by an odd acrid aroma and to further puzzlement, the discovery of scat longer than 12” in the barn one night. The peak of the strangeness occurred one night as my grandfather saw something looking at him through the front door window to which he reacted by shooting out the entire front door from the inside with his shotgun. Whatever he fired upon crushed the enclosure around his garden due to its ferocity & determination to escape. I get chills simply typing this, not simply because of the empathy for my grandfather in that situation but primarily because of how bad his reaction scared the entire family. There’s almost an insidious callous over everyone’s face & eyes when the story is told or discussed due to their fearful puzzlement with it. My father remarked never knowing what it was but simply that it scared his grandfather so severely that it scared the entire family.

As you might imagine being told this story as a child, the fear evolved to curiosity then to motivation and as I grew so did my thirst for answers surrounding the bigfoot phenomenon. I live in East Texas and have spent a number of hours in various national forests (Big Thicket, Sam Houston, Sabine, Angelina and a few others) with a few friends “investigating” the anomaly. We traversed throughout the state’s forests, recorded vocals (low quality) and had some odd experiences especially in TBT but last summer in July I mapped a road trip to the LBL. I was looking for a hotspot outside our typical stomping ground within reasonable distance and the LBL kept coming up with online “research (I use “research” & “investigate” lightly, none of us claim to know much about these creatures if anything at all).”

We found a primitive camping spot and made camp. We were extremely close to the water with a little over 90 degrees of our position surrounded by it, there was no one around and with further inspection it was obvious no one had used this area of the forest much for whatever reason. Tons of old over grown campsites, roads that weren’t finished being logged, as well as trails that inevitably disappeared within the foliage because of lack of use. I noticed about 100 yards beside our camp there was an area of the forest that was completely dead. We called “dead stick city” because we retrieve our fire wood from there. After looking for prints we immediately began to notice so called tree structures. Although there were dead trees & sticks everywhere, there were specific arrangements and placements obviously deliberate even complex in some instance with one even being over 7ft tall. I think it’s important that I emphasize that I try to maintain an extremely high sense of rational objectivity while being in the field. Too many times have I heard every little thing explained away as a result of sasquatch activity and it’s extremely frustrating. Completely immersing yourself with bigfoot while looking for its evidence is terribly counter intuitive and only hinders the process of validation, furthermore hurts the reputation of believers because of the ridiculous evidence heralded as proof due to this unhealthy mentality & its perpetuation. I’d almost argue adopting a skeptics mentality would be better than an irrational believer (I’ll step off of my soap box now, momentarily). After examining many of them we documented what we had found then moved on hoping to see something unknowingly about to truly understand the phrase: “careful for what you wish for.”

There were five of us in all; two of them had been my primary companions throughout the investigations in Texas while the other two were friends that had asked to join us on the trip. Anyone that knows me well knows that I’m actively interested in the subject; I’m the “bigfoot guy” but another in the group was becoming quite the “bigfoot guy” himself due to his own more recent curiosity & research and even though the other friend was interested in the subject he was still a bit skeptical but nonetheless accompanied us on all our outings. As for the other two: one was mildly interested in the sasquatch phenomenon and while the other friend typically made a mockery of my interest he still enjoyed my enthusiasm & company and came along.

The mildly interested & uninterested friends were asleep on our 3rd night of encampment. It was about 3am and the other two and I finally decided to retire to the tent as the fire died down. Let me preface the next part of the story with that everyone knows when you set up a tent you found the flattest surface and remove all rocks, acorns, etc for comfortability’s sake. An additional note is that my side of the tent was about 30-40 yards from the only ridgeline in our immediate area and there was small acorn tree (4-5” in diameter) next to my corner of the tent, maybe a foot and a half away from it. We hadn’t been in the tent for 3 minutes when a rock come from the ridge line and hit the tree next to my head. It hit the tree so loud and hard that when the rock fell, my friend heard it through his headphone. I immediately sat up and asked my 2 friends if they heard what had happened to which they replied they did. Believe it or not, I chuckled; being 26 years old having invested countless hours of research & study and I was finally in the situation I wanted to be in and…it was just simply too surreal. But after a few seconds passed knowing that I had put us in this disposition I immediately began delegating a small action plan if anything escalated as well as briefly talking to them about what we thought might be happening around us. After the conjecture ended we all laid back down and waited which is when I was completely consumed with dread. And I mean one of the most vulnerable & fearful occupations I have ever experienced. I immediately ask the other 2 how they felt and they instantly reply “uncomfortable.” I finally understand the dread guests talk about on your show and it is so engrossingly uneasy it’s hard to articulate. The closest way I can describe it is that your body is completely overdosed with fight or flight adrenaline to the point of being stunned while feeling sick to your stomach because of the overhaul of fear. There was nothing left to do but soak in our own fear and hope for sleep which final came after an eternity But alas I was awoken to my body demanding me to relieve my bladder of its contents. I woke up the same 2 friends (the other two have been asleep this entire time) and told them I wanted them to watch my back, more literal in the instance, while I did the deed. I walked out about 15ft too scared to go further only armed with my head lamp while they scanned the surrounding areas with their flashlights from the entrance of the tent. Everything seemed fine until I started back towards the tent but then I noticed something a little over the right side of the tent, the side I was sleeping on. About 30 yards behind the tent were 2 sets of yellow eyes. As soon as I saw them the bigger one dropped lower to the ground, at first I considered coyote but the eyes seemed too big (bigger than golf ball smaller than baseball). But what really put me in a state of panic was how the bigger set moved from one side of the tree then popped out the other side. I’m not unfamiliar with the “tree peaking” method and that’s exactly what was occurring, the other aspect that bothered me was the two sets of eyes kept looking at me then one another as if they were communicating. Just as one person would look at another to communicate about what they’re observing or to gauge the other’s reaction & that’s what these things were seemingly doing. I instantly called my friend over because I needed someone else to see what I was seeing, in that moment otherwise I’d go crazy not knowing if I was seeing things or not. He immediately agreed and continued watching them with me as the small one disappeared off to the side towards the ridge. The bigger followed the smaller one but on a much slower timetable. It even disappeared then reappeared shortly after but soon completely vanished. I couldn’t make out any true shapes or sizes because the lights we were using weren’t strong enough for the distance but more importantly with the fire too close to our left it really broke the darkness therefore not giving us enough contrast of light to see any silhouettes.

We ended up waking the others up and staying up for a bit discussing the turn of events but nothing more occurred that night although something did steal an entire white onion out of the camp at some point during the night. We couldn’t find it anywhere in the morning and the rock that hit our tree was at least 3-4lbs and roughly the size of my hand. We checked the area the next morning, we didn’t see any tracks other than 1 coyote. The area the eyes were at was on a decline from our camp making judgments on height hard to decide especially since we couldn’t say for sure which tree they were at because of the handful in that specific area. We left that morning because of the miserable heat and the long drive home even though we initially planned to stay another night. I didn’t tell anyone but I was also worried about potential escalation of behavior and felt like we should heed the warning and leave when it was given so we did.

That’s the most exciting experience I have but not the only. Presently I believe my friends and I have finally found an area of habituation in Texas. We’ve found a vicinity that has consistent odd vocalizations and our last expedition we heard something that reminded me of the sierra sounds. I’m still analyzing the recording but unfortunately, I forgot my mic and used a naked recorder and my friend didn’t have much luck either but I’ll share if I can get a clear rendition of what we heard.

I really appreciate your show & all you do for the community. You’ve done an outstanding job providing a great platform for people to learn, share & heal. I know it means more than you know for some and you’ll be forever appreciated for that.

Please reach out to me if you have any further questions.”

12 Responses to “My grandfather’s story and my experience in LBL”

  1. Charles R

    I had to map Cedar Vale, KS as not many reports from KS. Cedar Vale is surrounded by the Cedar Creek and the Caney River, thus the avenue for the Bigfoot to move through as the satellite shows a decent amount of woods along both corridors, with typical Kansas farmland. I guess great Grandpa took great measures to insure the safety of his family. I have to get down to that LBL. Would make a great long weekend motorcycle trip.

  2. Kelly W

    I know it has been discussed on the show, the close proximity of sightings near Reservations.. the Osage Rez is just a little over 50 miles from Cedar Vale KS… google earth shows almost complete tracts of wooded areas between the two points..just a FYI

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