Bigfoot Spotted in Northern California?

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By Tim Binnall

A law enforcement officer in northern California claims to have recently spotted what he believes was a Bigfoot resting on the side of a road. The intriguing sighting is said to have occurred on January 23rd as Rick Bates was driving home from Oregon along interstate highway 101 and passing through the community of Garberville. "As I rounded a sweeping right-hand turn," he recalled in a subsequent report to the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization, "I saw a figure on the southbound shoulder of the highway."

Strangely, Bates said, the curious figure appeared to be laying on the pavement "on its right side." Making the odd scene even weirder, he estimated that the body would stand seven feet tall if it were upright. Although the figure seemed to be shaped like a human, Bates was certain that it was not a person and observed that it sported broad shoulders, considerable musculature, and a coat of fur that was "chocolate brown and very coarse," which he said was very much unlike that of a bear.

Alas, after passing the eyebrow-raising oddity on the side of the road, Bates turned around to try to get a better look at it, but it had vanished by the time he arrived back at the spot. "As an avid hunter and fisherman, I spend a lot of time in the woods," he ultimately concluded in his report, "I spent every summer camping in that area as well as a kid. I have never seen anything like what I saw just this evening."

Bates later spoke with BFRO Investigator Matthew Moneymaker, who revealed that the witness is "a 20-year active duty law enforcement officer" who "describes himself as very observant." Although the researcher indicated that he "has never heard a report of a Bigfoot laying down within a few feet of a highway," Bates report does sound similar to a 2019 sighting in Australia in which a couple saw what they suspect was a downed Yowie on the side of the road. Ultimately, as with most cases wherein eyewitness testimony is all that is available, the nature of what was seen is likely to remain a mystery.

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