Words of Whit


Steve Whitford

Camping with a real Big Foot, the final chapter

The year was 1972. Forests were receding instead of my hairline, and I was a strapping young man of 22.

During that endless summer, my two friends and I decided to spend a weekend in the wilderness near Mount Rainier. One was Wayne Hanson, a childhood buddy. The other was a gentleman I had met and befriended in college. His name was Abduhlmossen Ali Alsaif, and he was from Saudi Arabia.

One sunny Saturday, the three of us backpacked on the Green Water Lakes trail just off highway 410. The trail was mostly uphill and after two grueling hours, we arrived at Second Lake, where we made camp. The lake is glacier fed and always extremely cold. There’s a small island that sported a lean-to for campers. A large, downed tree provided its only access, and passage was precarious when carrying a pack.

That evening just as dusk was turning into night, someone or something began throwing softball-sized rocks at us. The rocks were thrown from the distant shore, too far for a human to throw them. The rocks were coming from about 75 yards away.

We could plainly see the rocks as they landed near us, but it was too dark, even with my six-cell flashlight, to get any glimpse of the throwers. After about two hours of this nonsense, we were tired and wanted to sleep, so I drew and aimed my .36-caliber Dragoon at the sky and let go a loud, fiery blast that ended the rock throwing immediately. The next morning we hiked back out to civilization speculating that perhaps a bear could have thrown the rocks, but a ranger we met said bears can’t throw rocks.

A few years later, Hanson died from black lung disease at the age of 25. Abdul returned to Saudi Arabia to fulfill his destiny with the military, and I’m the only one left here to tell the story. It was years later that I learned that it’s extremely common for Big Foot to throw rocks.

A long time ago, there were two different types of humanoids, man and Neanderthal. Neanderthals were thought to have gone extinct some 60,000 years ago, but during this time they interbred with man for thousands of years. Neanderthals were similar in appearance to the legendary Big Foot and maybe, just maybe, they were smarter than our ancestors. Seeing man’s propensity for destruction, perhaps they chose to live apart from us and in secret. Someday we will find the indisputable proof of their existence and for Big Foot, that day will be sad.