Bigfoot: a Global Phenomenon

In the world of cryptozoology, Bigfoot is one of the most well-recognized specimens. Countless TV shows, books, documentaries and Youtube accounts have been solely dedicated to the pursuit of this mysterious hominid. Yet the Pacific Northwest is not the only location where these supposed forest dwellers reside. On nearly every continent across the globe, countries share corresponding versions of the same entity. Eerily similar legends have been passed down for centuries and speak of an unknown species.


Inhabiting the vast wilderness of North America is a creature commonly referred to as Bigfoot. Native Americans spoke of such beings hundreds of years before the infamous Patterson Gimlin Film was released. Indigenous Salish people called him “Sasq’ets” which means “wild man” or “hairy man”. They believed Sasquatch was an interdimensional traveler who possessed the ability to move between spiritual and physical reams.

Based on video footage and observational reports, the cryptid is described as bipedal with an ape-like appearance. It has an incredibly muscular frame which ranges from six to ten feet tall. Dark fur covers most of the body and ranges in color from a reddish brown to dark black. Others who claim to have seen the beast say it possesses a pronounced brow bone and a tapered cone-shaped head. Those within close proximity often report a foul smelling odor comparable to garbage.

A still from the Patterson Gimlin Film, one of the best-known pieces of Bigfoot evidence.


Much of South America is filled with lush jungles, abundant food sources and a temperate climate. Many believe this terrain is an optimum environment to sustain a hominin population. Below the equator they are called Mapinguari, meaning “roaring animal” in Spanish. These hominals have brightly saturated fur and share a number of similarities with their American counterpart. Certain tribal narratives depict them as massive monkey-sloth hybrid. Ancient lore claims weapons are unable to penetrate its tough hide and even bullets cannot slay the elusive one. Biologists propose this creature may in fact be a giant ground sloth, a species thought to have gone extinct over ten thousand years ago.

The Amazon rainforest covers over two million miles. Is it possible that an unknown species is living in the South American jungle?


Roaming the immense Australian outback is an intriguing fellow by the name of Yowie. Fables recounted by Aboriginal elders chronicle a primitive type of anthropoid. Oral recollections date back thousands of years and match reported Homo sapien-primate depictions. Ancient cave paintings have been found which depict the so-called “bush monster”. In relation to their American cousins, Yowies are also fairly large and can reach a staggering height of twelve feet. Primordial facial features are present including a broad, flat nose.

Queensland, New South Wales and eastern Australia each have distinctive myths pertaining to the critter. Regional names include Quinkin, Jurrawarra, Puttikan,  and Gulaga. In 1876 an article was featured in the Australian Town and Country Journal which featured an “unearthly animal” called the Yahoo-Devil Devil. While some feel that Yowie is sentient, others argue that it’s a dangerous predator which should be avoided. Cryptozoologist are perplexed as to where this mammal originates from due to the territory’s isolated location.

Aboriginal cave paintings in Australia depict an unknown creature.

Chimiset/ Nandi Bear

Lions, hippos, elephants, giraffes, gorillas and crocodiles are some of the wildlife that Africa is renown for. Lesser-known is Nandi Bear or Chimiset, which translated means “devil”. It is often depicted as a huge upright baboon with aggressive tendencies. Others say they more closely resemble hyenas with red hair and short tales. Various tales warn that numerous deaths of livestock and men can be attributed to the brute. Author Frank W. Lane wrote, “What the Abominable Snowman is to Asia, or the Great Sea Serpent is to the oceans, the Nandi Bear is to Africa. It is one of the most notorious of those legendary beasts which, so far, eluded capture and the collector’s rife.”

Africa is said to be home to the Chimiset, a baboon-like Bigfoot.


Another infamous hominid is said to roam the picturesque snow-covered Himalayan Mountains. Yeti, or Meh Teh to locals, first entered Western society’s vocabulary during the nineteenth century. A United Kingdom representative named BH Hodson adamantly stated that his assistants were attacked by a monstrous beast in 1832. Fifty-seven years later, L.A. Waddell, a British army major, discovered massive footprints while trekking a high peak in Sikkin. Sherpas informed him that they belonged to a Yeti, a fearsome behemoth who often attacked humans and feasted on the ravaged corpses.

According to Nepalese citizens, this entity is called “rakshas” which translates to demon in English. Religious mountain dwellers worshipped Yeti as a God and were said to use its blood during sacred ceremonies. A Buddhist monastery in Pangboche was supposedly in possession of a Yeti hand. Tom Slick, an oil tycoon and explorer, planned an expedition to take photographs of the appendage. He stole a fragment from the specimen after monks denied his request for a sample. Tests performed on the smuggled bone showed that it was “near human” but not fully human.

A supposed Yeti footprint is captured on film during a 1951 Everest expedition.

Skunk Ape

Nearly 2,000 square miles of southern Florida is covered by a freshwater marsh known as the Everglades. Residents include endangered panthers, massive alligators, seventeen-foot pythons and apparently a hairy humanoid. As the name implies, this nomadic breed is known for producing a strong stench. Seminole tribespeople spoke of identical creatures in respected stories long before spring breakers and Disney enthusiasts migrated south. Skunk Ape, also called Swamp Ape or Swampsquatch, gained popularity amongst the masses after a series of sightings began to occur over sixty years ago. One of the most notable occurrences lead to the infamous Myakka Skunk Ape photographs which clearly capture an unknown species.

An elderly woman captured these images in her backyard near Sarasota, Florida.


In addition to the infamous Death Worm, Mongolia is further known for a different type of cryptid. Observers affirm the upright-walking hominins more closely resemble people rather than apes. Some speculate that Almas are directly related to humans. Investigators propose that one of our distant ancestors may have survived extinction. If that is the case, it might be possible that a small population could survive in isolated areas. Illustrations of this unique biped can be found in a traditional Tibetan medicinal book. According to British anthropologist Myra Shackley, the encyclopedia “contains thousands of illustrations of various classes of animals (reptiles, mammals and amphibia), but not one single mythological animal such as are known from similar medieval European books. All the creatures are living and observable today.” Artists depicted Almas as a flesh-and-blood living organism.

Almas illustrations are found in a Tibetan medicinal book.


Rural Central China is home to its own type of Sasquatch. Yeren, or “wild-man,” resides in remote mountainous regions of western Hubei. The enigmatic primate closely resembles Bigfoot in both appearance and size. According to researchers, the unknown breed’s lineage can be traced back to Gigantopithecus Blacki. Hundreds of respectable individuals have declared they have seen a Yeren. In fact, Chinese government officials conducted an extensive search after copious amounts of sightings had occurred. Evidence gathered included footprints and hair samples which were sent in for analysis. However, just as the studies completed in the United States, results were inconclusive.

A statue in China depicts a Yeren mother and her young.

Orang Pendek

Hailing from Sumatra is a smaller hominoid that goes by the name Orang Pednek. A community of pygmy-like Bigfoot are said to reside deep within tropical foliage. According to eyewitnesses the coat displays a wide spectrum of color variations. Shades of gray, yellow, orange, brown and gold have been observed. Footprint castings reveal a divergent big toe akin to opposable thumbs. Debbie Martyr, a former newspaper editor, spent over fifteen years in Indonesia studying this secretive vertebrate. She allegedly experienced close encounters on several occasions. Multiple common Sasquatch traits have been noted including a crested head, long canine teeth and a prominent brow ridge.

Resident Indonesians revere this “short person” and leave various offerings in attempts to happily coexist. For locals, Orang Pednek is an integral part of daily living. Perhaps such testaments are not so far-fetched. In 2004 scientists unearthed the remains of an unknown type of human predecessor while exploring a cave in Flores. Publications quickly dubbed the skeleton “Hobbit” due a tiny adult stature of three-feet. Might it be plausible that a surviving community of Homo floresiensis is responsible for the Sumatran sightings?

A Homo floresiensis skull in comparison to a modern-day human.

For hundreds of years nations around the planet have experienced Bigfoot firsthand. Intriguingly, most of the aforementioned native groups had no way of communicating with one another. Throughout recent decades an increasing number of credible eyewitnesses have come forward. Ancient drawings, endemic folklore and direct encounters all reference an equivalent being. Perhaps society will one day uncover the truth about these reclusive creatures and learn precisely what our ascendents were expressing all along.

These creatures are only a small selection of the dozens of examples that exist. Let me know if you would like to read about additional types of Sasquatch in the future! 


The Man Who Vanished into Thin Air

For over a century the mysterious disappearance of David Lang has left researchers perplexed. The events that transpired are more comparable to a Twilight Zone episode than a missing persons case. Yet oftentimes the truth is stranger than fiction. After all, similar occurrences continue to happen to this day. Hundreds of eerily parallel cases are described in the Missing 411 book series. Perhaps the best way to determine what is currently happening is to take a look further back in time.

During the afternoon hours of September 23, 1880, a farmer by the name of David Lang and his wife Emma exited their Tennessee home. Playing outside were the couple’s two children: eight-year-old George and eleven year-old Sarah. They watched while Mr. Lang crossed the field and approached his animal stables. At this moment a horse and buggy traveling down the road became visible. Occupying the carriage was Judge August Peck, a family friend, and his brother-in-law. When the youngsters saw who had arrived they immediately stopped playing and eagerly ran towards the vehicle. Judge Peck was known for bringing gifts whenever he came to visit.

David Lang was a Tennessee farmer who vanished into thin air.

Although these guests were unexpected, the couple was delighted to see them. Mr. Lang waved as he turned around and walked back towards the house. Suddenly something unbelievable happened mid-step: the man completely vanished into thin air. One moment he was there and the next he simply ceased to exist. His utterly shocked wife screamed in horror. She, her children and friends all witnessed this bizarre disappearance.

Judge August Peck was a well-respected member of the community.

Hastily the three adults sprinted to the area where Mr. Lang had been last seen.  Despite painstakingly scouring every square inch of ground, nothing turned up. Emma Lang had now become incredibly distraught and was brought inside in attempts to calm her down. An emergency siren rang and alerted local neighbors who quickly formed a search party. Concerned lantern-equipped citizens worked feverishly into the late evening hours.

Detectives, police officers and bloodhounds arrived at the scene. They stomped their feet trying to locate any craters to no avail. For weeks crew members thoroughly investigated the pasture but there were no signs of the lost farmer. A land survey showed that beneath the soil was solid limestone free of sinkholes and caves. There were not any wells, marshes, quicksand, trees or boulders present. Now the plot had thickened. How could a fully grown man simply dematerialize during broad daylight, never to be seen again?

The disappearance occurred on a farm a few miles outside of Gallatin, Tennessee.

Several months later George and Sarah Lang noticed a strange anomaly precisely where their father had disappeared. There was a perfectly formed circle about fifteen feet in diameter where all the interior grass had turned yellow and stopped growing. Even stranger was the fact that resident animals refused to walk through this specific spot. Creatures such as vermin and insects completely avoided the area. When George placed a noisy cricket inside of the circle it immediately fell silent and swiftly jumped out. Upon leaving, the arthropod began chirping loudly once again.

Puzzled, the daughter decided to call out to her beloved parent. Both she and her brother were astonished when they heard Mr. Lang respond by faintly yelling, as if calling out for help. Soon his voice began to fade away before dissolving into silence. Excitedly the pair ran off to fetch their mother. She too could recognize the distant voice of her husband. For four days the family listened intently to the far-off replies until they eventually became inaudible.

After the events that transpired, Mrs. Lang passed the farm to a family friend.

There was never any memorial or funeral service held, perhaps due to wishful thinking that he may someday resurface. Mrs. Lang was never the same after her husband’s departure. Given the haunting memories that surrounded the farm combined with her fragile mental state, she decided to move away. After she and her children left the property was turned over to Judge Peck to rent out. Out of respect for Mr. Lang, the field was left untouched and remained that way until his wife’s passing.

Fifty-one years later Sarah Lang was interviewed by mystery novelist Stuart Palmer. In 1953 the story gained public attention after it was published in Fate Magazine, a popular publication that featured obscure topics. According to Fate, their story “How Lost Was My Father?” was a direct derivation of the previous 1931 account. Harold T. Wilkins released Strange Mysteries of Time and Space in 1958 and Frank Edwards wrote Stranger than Science one year later. Ultimately since few records have been located, investigators are left to study the work of these authors.

For over a century researchers have wondered where David Lang went.

Whatever happened to David Lang remains a baffling mystery. Some speculate that he stumbled into another dimension. Others believe the man was abducted by aliens in a forcefield-concealed UFO. Skeptics say that the entire story is a work of fiction and nothing more than a mere hoax. As the decades continues to pass it becomes increasingly difficult to discern what really transpired that day. Given the number of strange disappearances that continue to occur, this is might be a case that should not be so easily dismissed.

What do you think happened to David Lang? Share your thoughts in the comments section if you have a theory of your own!

The Haunting Tale of S.S. Ourang Medan

For centuries legends of ghost ships have fascinated the masses. Haunting true stories of the Mary Celeste and Flying Dutchman perpetuate an age-old mystery. There are countless cases of unnerving oceanic anomalies, as seen in film, literature and through oral recollections. One of the most disturbing of such tales is that of the S.S. Ourang Medan. Her ultimate fate is nothing less than bizarre and continues to perplex modern-day mariners.

Located in the Indian Ocean, between Malaysia and Sumatra, is a trade route known as the strait of Malacca. Each day nearly two hundred and thirty ships navigate this narrow stretch of sea. It is one of the busiest ports in the world responsible for transporting a quarter of the world’s traded goods. Pirates plagued the area for years and stories of vanishing boats added to Malacca’s mystique. One particular vessel would give the channel a chilling reputation which remains over seven decades later.

The Strait of Malacca is one of the busiest ports in the world.

In June of 1947 passing barges received a series of troubling SOS signals. While the source of the call was unknown their message was clear and concise: “All officers including captain are dead, lying in chartroom and bridge. Possibly whole crew dead.” Following the distressing message was an eruption of Morse code tones which could not be deciphered. A final bone chilling statement was then made: “I die,” accompanied by a deafening silence.

All nearby ships were instructed to remain alert and report anything unusual to authorities. Despite the cooperation of many seafarers, nothing out of the ordinary was initially discovered. Dutch and British commanders worked hastily to triangulate precisely where the alerts had been transmitted from. They were able to pinpoint Ourang Medan in a remote part of the ocean, miles away from all established shipping lanes.

An American merchant vessel, Silver Star (formerly known as Santa Cecilia), was closest to the estimated location. Crew members immediately set off on an altered course and headed towards the distressed boat since its message had been so dire. Only a few hours later she was visible drifting aimlessly on the horizon line. Upon closer inspection of the hull it became apparent that there was not any visible external damage. Several attempts were made to contact the occupants to no avail.

S.S. Silver Star was the closest ship to Ourang Medan’s estimated location.

When the apprehensive rescue party embarked the ship they were greeted by a nightmarish scene. Littering the deck were dozens of corpses. Each man had an expression of sheer terror with bulging, panic-strickened eyes and mouths agape in silent screams. Every deckhand’s arms and legs were extended in distorted positions as if they were trying to fight some unknown source. Even the resident dog had his lips peeled back in an aggressive teeth-exposing snarl.

Silver Star’s squadron anxiously meandered through the interior. Inside of the bridge they found the captain’s body. Remaining officers were discovered dead in the wheel house and chart room. Engineering staff remained at their designated stations and the operator who made the initial emergency call was sprawled out over his transmitter. Just like their comrades on the upper deck, these men also had looks of utter horror and bizarre limb contortions. While it was obvious all crew members had suffered agonizing deaths, it remained uncertain what caused such grisly demises.

Equally mystifying was the state of the deceased. Although an SOS had been recently made, the bodies were decomposing at an alarmingly unnatural rate. Even stranger was the frigid temperature engulfing the entire barge. During that hot summer day temperatures had reached well over one hundred degrees. Readings performed upon the schooner revealed a bone-chilling forty degrees. The entire search team were completely perplexed as to what had happened to those poor souls aboard Ourang Medan.

Temperature readings performed on the vessel were over 60°F lower than the surrounding area.

A decision was ultimately made to tow the watercraft back to port. However, shortly after departing smoke began to billow from the tethered boat’s lower deck cargo hold. Immediately a quick-witted commander cut the connecting rope. That critical decision would save countless innocent lives. Within seconds Medan exploded with such tremendous intensity that she was propelled from the water. Pieces of the vessel began to break apart as she sank into the murky abyss, never to be seen again.

Since this enigmatic occurrence countless investigators have searched for answers. Some have made connections to the infamous Philadelphia Experiment and suggest covert military testing is to blame. Others speculate that the ship was transporting Tabun, an extremely toxic nerve-suppressing chemical manufactured during World War II. Skeptics question whether these events ever took place.

An official US Coast Guard report was released in a May 1952 issue of Proceedings of the Merchant Marine. As time continues to pass the truth of Ourang Medan becomes increasingly difficult to ascertain. She and her crew took their secrets with them when they descended into the dismal depths. With modern sonar technology constantly evolving the wreckage may eventually surface. Until that day arrives, this is a case that will ultimately remain unsolved.

With advancing technologies are we getting closer to discovering the shipwreck?

What do you think happened to Ourang Medan? Share your theories in the comment section, I’d love to hear other opinions on this mysterious topic. 

Cattle Carnage: an Overview of Cow Mutilation

For hundreds of years animals around the planet have fallen prey to some truly baffling deaths. Corpses of cattle, horses, sheep, rabbits, goats, pigs, bison, deer, elk as well as dogs and cats have surfaced with disturbing similarities. These victims have bloodless incisions created with laser-like precision. Their eye sockets are hollowed and internal organs have been meticulously extracted. Frequently removed are parts of the lower jaw, lymph nodes, tongue, rectum and genitals.


Reports of such incidents date back to the nineteenth century. During the evening hours of April 21,1897 one of the first well-documented case occurred in Leroy, Kansas. A rancher named Alexander Hamilton was awoken by an odd humming noise coming from his field of cattle. He and two of his friends went outside investigate the source of this peculiar sound. What they witnessed shocked them: a UFO hovering above the pasture. 

According to mens’ testimonies, the craft was around 300 feet long and cigar-shaped. It appeared to be made of a translucent material with six occupants visible inside. When the airship approached a young cow, it cried out and attempted to escape but instead became entangled in fencing. A rope was caught around its neck and extended upwards. According to Hamilton, “We tried to get it off but we could not. So we cut the wires loose to see the ship, heifer and all, rise slowly, disappearing into the northwest.”


The following morning a neighbor located the creature’s butchered remains in his yard. There were no tracks leading to the body despite being surrounded by soft, impressionable earth. An affidavit signed by ten respected members of the community stated “for truth and veracity we have never heard Hamilton’s word questioned.” While many skeptics dismiss this story as an elaborate hoax, Hamilton maintained his sincerity until the day he died. 


Nearly a century later the topic of mutilations once again entered the public eye. On September 9,1967 a disturbing event occurred in San Luis Valley, Colorado. A horse named Lady (who was mistakenly called Snippy in the original news article) that was missing for two days had resurfaced. When her ravaged carcass was discovered there were several disturbing anomalies. Both the neck and head had been carefully skinned and the bones showed no trace of bodily tissue. All exposed skeletal system was so bleached that it appeared as if they were exposed to the sun for months. Internal organs such as the brain and heart had been completely removed.


Despite the grisly scene, there was not any blood or sinew present. Between Lady and the nearest hoof prints was a distance of over one hundred feet. Prior to her disappearance, there had been spike in UFO sightings in the area, a common trait in many supposed abduction cases. On the day the horse went missing, a local Superior Court judge and his wife witnessed strange lights in the sky. Three bright orange objects moved in a triangular pattern at astonishing speeds.


Over the years the number of strange deaths increased; from 1975-1977 approximately two thousand cattle had been maimed. These slaughterings spread across twenty-two different states throughout the US. If human beings were responsible they would require incredible skill levels and tools which did not exist during that time. Even operating room physicians would struggle replicating incisions of this caliber. Given the number of cows killed and the vast amount of land covered, it is highly unlikely that such a task could be accomplished by a group of people.

A percentage of these cases can be ruled out through reasonable causes such as predators or pranksters. However, more often than not, there are several mystifying traits which are repeatedly seen.

No foot/hoof/paw prints are found leading up to or leaving the scene. There are no signs that the animal was moved to another location at the time these injuries were sustained.

Abnormally high levels of radiation are present in the area where the dead body is located. Scavengers and flies avoid the carcass.

Wound has cauterized edges. These cuts are created with laser-precision which rule out carnivorous attacks. Surgeons equipped with the proper tools and staffing would have a difficult time replicating these cuts.

Exsanguination: all blood has been completely drained.

UFO sightings & blacked unmarked helicopters are seen before, during or after the mutilation takes place.

Missing internal organscertain innards have been removed. Most commonly taken are reproductive and rectal organs.

A perfectly made circle surrounding the remains.

Jaw cuts which reveal the critter’s teeth. Surrounding glandular tissues and tongue are usually taken out.

Over the decades these barbaric killings have continued to transpire worldwide. Many who study this phenomena ask themselves one question: why? While theories are abundant there are still no definitive answers. Some speculate it’s for the purpose of genetic testing or DNA harvesting. Others feel that it’s a bizarre extraterrestrial science experiment. Whatever the reason, it’s cruel to kill innocent beings only to dump their slain corpses.

What do you think is happening to these animals and why are they being harvested? Share your thoughts in the comments, I’d love to hear what you think.

El Chupacabra: Science Fiction or Undiscovered Species?

Chupacabras will always hold a special place in my heart. They are the namesake of this blog and one of the few cryptozoological critters that supposedly inhabit Florida. Many believe that the emergence of such an entity is a relatively new phenomenon. Yet tales of such cryptids date back to many centuries ago and are shared amongst several different cultures worldwide. In fact, the Ancient Mayans wrote of a monster by the same name in 1400 BCE. 

Ancient Mayans wrote of a creature that went by the same name.

Chupacabras first entered mainstream attention during the mid-1990s. A farmer in a rural Puerto Rican town discovered eight of his prized sheep dead. Each had three strange triangular puncture wounds on their chests and were completely drained of blood. Throughout the following months several other locals reported similar slaughterings of goats, sheep, chickens and pigs. When the media got a hold of these bizarre stories they dubbed the creature “El Chupacabra,” which is Spanish for the goatsucker.

Stories of El Chupacabra received mainstream attention after eight sheep were killed mysteriously in Puerto Rico.

These attacks quickly spread to other counties including Brazil, Columbia, Argentina, Peru, the Dominican Republic, Mexico and North America. Witnesses describe the fanged beast as around five feet tall with enormous glowing red eyes. It has a solid build with a reptilian-like appearance and sharp quills running along its back. Some say that the creature is green and hairless while others recall fur covering the body. When El Chupacabra is nearby there is often a foul odor present, similar to many reported Sasquatch sightings.

Chupacabra sightings occur throughout South America.

One of the most infamous encounters with this legendary animal happened to a Puerto Rican housewife named Madelyne Tolentino. In August of 1995, she saw the being outside of her Canóvanas home. According to the woman, it was a four-foot tall bipedal being that resembled an alien and moved like a kangaroo. Each hand had three clawed fingers. Instead of a snout there were two small air holes and spikes covering its spine. During this confrontation there were three other observers present: Tolentino’s mother, ex-husband and his coworker.

Madelyne Tolentino’s sketch of what she witnessed outside her window. 

At the time of this incident one hundred and fifty farm animals, including pets, died from mysterious puncture wounds. All of the bodily fluids appeared to have been sucked out. Similar to many cattle mutilation cases, these cuts appeared to be created by something with laser-sharp precision. Even modern-day surgeons would have difficulty replicating such lacerations. UFO sightings frequently occur within close proximity to where the cryptid is spotted. For these reasons some speculate that El Chupacabra is an unknown species of extraterrestrial.

Are Chupacabras related to extraterrestrials?

Others feel that misidentification is to blame. Predatory cats or mangy coyotes could be responsible for this legendary beast. In the United States, carcasses of alleged Chupacabras received DNA testing. Blood analysis revealed common mammals such as dogs and raccoons to be the perpetrators. Some of these animals have parasitic infections which cause a loss of fur and an odd appearance. Conspiracy theorists believe that our government is to blame and the creature is the result of secret genetic experimentation projects or a biological warfare weapon.

Many supposed sightings are misidentified dogs, raccoons or coyotes.

Despite the FBI completing two thorough Chupacabra investigations, we are still no further to solving this mystery. Possibilities range from an elaborate hoax to a legitimate living breed worthy of scientific merit. With 15,000 to 18,000 new species discovered on Earth each year, it’s entirely plausible that an unidentified carnivorous species might be roaming the jungles of Puerto Rico. Until a definitive answer is found cryptozoologists will continue the pursuit of this legendary animal.

Missing 411: Hundreds of Strange Disappearances in our National Parks

Each year hundreds of people go missing in United State Parks and National Forests. Most investigations are eventually solved through reasonable causes: foul play, drowning, suicide or an animal attack. Others aren’t quite so easy to dismiss. Many of them are not merely perplexing but outright disturbing. The Missing 411 books take a deeper look into these specific situations which seem to defy all logic.


Author of the series, David Paulides, is a private investigator who served as a Los Angeles police officer for over twenty years. One day he stumbled upon some shocking information from a park ranger. They informed  Paulides about a series of bizarre missing persons cases happening within the National Parks. According to this source, these individuals go missing under very unusual circumstances. Law enforcement officials and park service management were doing everything in their power to keep these events concealed from the general public.

Author of the Missing 411 book series, David Paulides.

When Paulides attempted to obtain a list of missing people in Yosemite National Park he hit the first of many roadblocks. He was told that there is no such document because the Department of Interior does not keep any record of missing people within their park systems. To obtain this information would cost him $34,000. A list missing persons for the entire United States park systems was a staggering $1.4 million. Paulides did not oblige and instead filed hundreds of Freedom Information Acts. Some were accepted while others were denied for unknown reasons.


As the investigation progressed the more mysterious it became. One of the first things that was discovered were the presence of “clusters” throughout the country. These locations are hotspots where individuals disappear at surprisingly high numbers. Concentrated areas are present in many states including California, Colorado, Washington, Georgia, Michigan and Arkansas. Fifty-two clearly defined geographic regions have been identified.

A map showing the disappearances in the United States. 52 geological clusters have been identified.

After meticulously researching thousands of cases, odd similarities and patterns emerged. Certain baffling parallels were seen repeatedly despite the incidents transpiring thousands of miles from each other. Some of the common links are difficult to rationalize and not easily dismissed. These perplexing characteristics leave far more questions than answers.

  • Search dogs behave strangely. Oftentimes these canines cannot pick up a scent, or simply don’t want to. In other instances they begin tracking only to lay down and stop searching as if the person had vanished into thin air. Cadaver dogs are unable to locate a corpse.
  • The body is found in an area that has searched before. In many instances the missing appears in a location that has been thoroughly searched dozens, if not hundreds, of times. It is not uncommon for the deceased to surface on a main trail that is utilized by hikers on a daily basis.
  • Travel uphill instead of downhill. The missing is often found at high levels of elevation, such as mountain peaks. Frequently the victim will travel an astounding amount of miles through treacherous terrain in a time period which seems humanly impossible.
  • Weather-related phenomenon. Shortly after the individual goes missing the forecast takes a drastic turn. Torrential rain, lightning, fog, sand storms or blizzards occur which delay search parties.
  • Missing clothing. Shoes, pants, shirts and jackets are often removed, even by children who are too young do so themselves. Paradoxical undressing cannot explain why a person would do this in a temperate environment. Clothing that is found is sometimes neatly folded.
  • High amounts of plane crashes. Search planes and helicopters seem to crash at abnormally high rates during these specific cases.
  • Extreme ends of the intellectual scale. On one side there are well educated people such doctors, psychiatrists and physicists. Others have disabilities such as autism or Down Syndrome.
  • German ancestry. Those with German heritage appear to go missing at much higher rates.
  • Boulder fields and granite. A high number of men and women vanish in boulder fields or areas with huge quantities of granite. Yosemite National Park is the largest of all clusters and also happens to be the biggest source of granite on Earth.
  • The victim is retrieved near a body of water. Another common factor is the presence of water. Bodies are often discovered near oceans, lakes, rivers, streams or swamps.
  • Berry picking. Strangely, this is a reoccurring theme shared amongst several cases. Those who are picking berries seem to go missing at higher rates.
  • Not feeling well or being tired. Prior to the disappearance, friends and family state the victim had informed them that they were not feeling well or tired.
  • Being last in line. One of the most recurrent of all traits are those in a group who happen to be the last in line. Others who were with the missing report seeing them mere seconds before and suddenly they had vanished without a trace. No one ever reports hearing any sounds such as a gasp, scream or an animal.


The NPS employs over 20,000 Americans and brings in an annual revenue $92 billion. If patrons knew what was really happening within the park systems it could have devastating financial consequences. Paulides has never stated who (or what) he believes is responsible for these incidents and merely presents the facts. Readers are left to derive their own conclusions based on the information presented. Theories as to what is taking these park-goers include Bigfoot attacks, alien abduction, thunderbirds, secret underground government bases or cannibalistic wild men. Whatever the source may be, it’s probably best to avoid being last in line the next time you visit a National Park.

Owl-Witches & Werewolves of the Everglades 

Covering nearly 2,000 square miles of southern Florida is a freshwater marsh known as the Everglades. There are tales that this area is home to a number of mysterious cryptids. Supposed inhabitants include Skunk Apes and anacondas so large that they can swallow alligators whole. Indigenous tribes speak of some lesser-known creatures. According to the Seminole, ominous owl-witches and werewolves roam the swampy land. 


Stigini, also called Ishtikini or Stikini, are sinister shape-shifters which usually resemble a massive great horned owl with dark menacing eyes. During the day they appear as ordinary people but once the sun sets they transform into a nine-foot tall feathered being. The metamorphosis occurs through vomiting their souls and internal organs each evening. By night they hunt for victims so that they can eat mortal’s hearts to take on their appearance. These entities are essentially zombies whose sole existence is the consumption of human flesh. 


Although the translation of Stigini means horned owl, they can also take on the appearance of other animals. On rare occasions they resemble bear, wolves or coyotes. Certain Seminole groups warn that speaking their name aloud puts you at risk for turning into one. In certain cases only revered tribal elders are permitted to tell these stories. Other communities treat the mysterious lore more casually and even use the fable to frighten children into behaving.


Similar myths are shared by various cultures around the world. In Mexican folklore the Lechuza is a large and magical bird who seeks revenge on those that have wronged her. West Virginia has legends of Mothman, a mysterious winged humanoid who is said to be an omen of impending doom. Greek mythology spoke of Strige, a wicked vampiric screech owl forced to live in an upside-down world. Other Native Americans believed that Thunderbirds had supernatural strength and powers.

Hatcko-tcapko, also referred to as Long Ears, is a werewolf-like beast. They wander the desolate marshlands by moonlight. Eyewitnesses accounts state that these beings are donkey to ox-sized and has a fusion of both deer and wolf features. As the name may imply, its ears are enormous and pointed. Long thin legs support their oversized hooked paws. At the end of Long Ear’s grey fur covered body is a bushy horse tail.

Those who encounter this creature describe smelling a foul odor when they are within close proximity. Similar to many reported Bigfoot encounters, this putrid scent is a frequent sign of its presence. Seminole were cautious to never get too close to Long Ears because of his ability to infect people with deadly diseases. Despite Hatcko-tcapko’s horrifying appearance and dangerous nature, he is not believed to be malicious.

Florida’s monsters of yesterday have been replaced with viral modern day alternatives: cannibals, zombies and living dinosaurs. Indigenous people could have merely been describing their own bizarre encounters in an era before the internet or cable TV. Roughly 200 species are going extinct each day on Earth. It’s entirely plausible that unknown animals lived in the Everglades centuries ago. What’s even more intriguing is the possibility that some may have survived.

If you’re ever had any strange encounters in rural Southern Florida feel free to share your experiences. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

The Bermuda Triangle: Centuries of Strange Occurrences

Planet Earth’s 123 billion acres are home to a number of enigmatic locations: Easter Island, the Great Pyramids and Area 51. Despite our modern technological advancements, the world remains filled with mystery. The Bermuda Triangle is one such example. Also known as the Devil’s Triangle, it refers to the 50,000 miles of ocean encompassing Bermuda, Miami and Puerto Rico. Throughout the centuries dozens of airplanes and ships have vanished in this area under unusual circumstances. 

Reports of strange anomalies can be traced back to the late 1400s when Christopher Columbus and his crew made their first voyage to the New World. Throughout the journey the vessel compass produced erratic readings. In his log he described a great ball of fire which flew through the sky before crashing into the murky abyss. Weeks later unknown lights appeared in the distance which did not match any known stars. In Columbus’ journal he wrote that the “very laws of nature were changing as we advanced, and that we were entering another world, subject to unknown influences.”

Christopher Columbus reported seeing strange lights in the sky and compass malfunctions.

During the 20th century the Bermuda Triangle entered mainstream attention after the events of the USS Cyclops. In March of 1918 a massive Naval fuel carrier disappeared while en route to its final destination. Lieutenant George Worley, the ship commander, was a Naval Auxiliary Service Master. Despite having the necessary equipment on board not a single SOS call was ever made. When the Cyclops failed to turn up in Baltimore an extensive search ensued. Every Naval boat from Cuba to Puerto Rico was enlisted to look for debris. Despite these efforts, no wreckage was ever found. Three hundred and nine men tragically lost their lives. Interestingly, in 1941 two of the Cyclops’ sister ships mysteriously vanished while on the same route.

The USS Cyclops, a 541’ Naval fuel vessel that mysteriously vanished at sea.

Flight 19 occurred just a few decades later on December 5th,1945. Five three-seater Avenger torpedo bombers departed from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Fourteen airmen received orders to perform testing bomb runs. The leader of the mission was Lieutenant Charles C. Taylor, an experienced pilot and combat veteran who served in WWII. When Taylor encountered compass malfunctions the group became extremely lost. All five plans flew aimlessly until they eventually began to run out of fuel. A plan was formed to make an emergency landing in the ocean and the group’s coordinates were radioed in. Later that day a rescue plane flew out with their thirteen-man crew. Just like the Flight 19 covey, they also disappeared. A five-day-long search ensued yet no remnants of either crash were ever discovered. “It’s as if they flew off to Mars,” was a statement in the in the official Navy report of the incident.

The crew of the infamous Flight 19.

Fast forward to the evening of December 22, 1967. A 23’ luxury cabin cruiser called Witchcraft left the Miami marina captained by Daniel Burrack. He intended to show his friend, an Irish Catholic priest, the impressive collection of Christmas lights along the shoreline. They had planned to go less than a mile out and stop at buoy #7, turn off the engine and enjoy the view. Not long into the pair’s short expedition the U.S. Coast Guard received a call from Burrack. It was not an SOS and the captain sounded calm as he explained that they seemed to have hit something. Burrack said that it was not an emergency and there was no visible damage to his boat. He requested to have his boat towed back to shore.

Within twenty minutes the Coast Guard arrived at their last known position. There were no signs of Witchcraft or that any boat had recently been there. Friends and family of Burrack were perplexed since he was an extremely cautious yachtsman as well as an esteemed veteran. Aside from the boat being equipped with life jackets and cushions it had also been built using a special floatation device. Essentially this design installation made the vessel unsinkable. A thorough search of 25,000 square miles yielded no results. According to investigative officials it was as if some unknown force picked up the ship and left nothing behind.

Daniel Burrack’s Witchcraft in 1967.

In December of 1970 a pilot by the name of Bruce Gernon took off from the runway of Andros Town Airport. He was accompanied by his father and his business associate in a brand new Beechcraft Bonanza A36. Although Gernon was in his early twenties he was very familiar with both Floridian and Bohemian airspace. In only three years he had accumulated over 600 miles of flying time and made dozens of trips to Andros Island. As they flew over the Triangle area the three men could see a strange cloud in the distance. None of them were too concerned until it had completely engulfed the plane. For ten minutes they traveled through the formation before finally escaping into clear skies.

Bruce Gernon

Shortly after another bizarre vaporous development appeared which seemed to radiate from the ground below. Suddenly everything became pitch black and accompanied by frequent flashes of bright light. As Gernon traveled forward the blinding bursts became more intense. Despite trying to free his craft he was unable to escape. After about fifteen minutes a “U” shaped opening appeared. As the Bonanza entered this portal a tunnel formed directly in their path. Swirling white haze seemed to be shrinking and closing in on the occupants. After twenty-seconds the three men once again exited and noticed they all shared a weightless feeling. Behind them the tunnel could be seen rapidly collapsing.

Many believe time warps responsible for some of the unexplained events that occur.

During this time all the electronic equipment malfunctioned and Gernon’s compass was spinning uncontrollably. When Air Traffic Control was contacted they stated that the plane was not present on radar. By now the clear blue sky had turned foggy and gray. Whilst they continued flying the fog began to break up into slits as if it had an electric charge. These pieces of mist all joined together in a radiating fashion. Once again the sky was a welcoming shade of blue. Now the Bonanza had returned on the map. However, nowhere near where it was supposed to be. Somehow the group had moved thirty minutes in time and one hundred miles in space. A trip that normally takes at least 75 minutes has been completed in less than 47. For this feat to be possible the aircraft would need to travel 2,000 miler per hour in a mere three minutes. Tops speeds for a Beechcraft Bonanza A36 are capped at 200 miles per hour.

Beechcraft Bonanza

To this day sailors and pilots continue to seemingly drop off the face of the planet. Only last year a Mitsubishi MU02B-40 vanished from all maps with its four passengers during clear weather conditions. Some scientists blame these events on waterspouts, methane gas or magnetic shifts. Others speculate that the source responsible is something much stranger: time warps, aliens, dimensional openings and sea monsters. Whatever the source may be it’s hard to deny there are some strange occurrences in the Bermuda Triangle.

The Bermuda Triangle covers 50,000 square miles of ocean.

What do you think is happening off the coast of Florida? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

The Mysterious Disappearance of Frederick Valentich


One of the most intriguing cases of potential alien abduction is the strange tale of a young pilot by the name of Frederick Valentich. In the late 1970s he had an arial encounter with a UFO while performing a flight down the Australian coast. There are several compelling pieces of evidence that were left behind: radio transmissions, eyewitness accounts and a photograph of an unknown craft.

On October 21st, 1978 Frederick Valentich embarked on a 125 mile flight along the shores of Bass Strait. Valentich, a member of the Air Training Corps, had been flying for over two years and accumulated over 150 hours of solitary trips. He was employed by an airline company and aspired to become a commercial pilot. At 6:19 pm Valentich took off in his Cessna 182 from an airport just outside of Melbourne. The journey was routine and followed a route that the twenty-one year old pilot had travelled many times before. Unbeknownst to Valentich, this would be his final departure.

Just over halfway through the uneventful flight things began to take a bizarre turn. An unidentified flying object was hovering about 1,000 feet above his plane. The craft was described as being a long metallic object with four bright lights and flew at speeds that seemed unbelievable. Valentich told air traffic controllers that something was approaching him and seemed to be playing some sort of game. It would remain stationary then quickly orbit closer. His final words were: “It is not an aircraft.”


Here is the actual transcript of the final communication between Frederick Valentich and the Melbourne Flight Services, as released by the Australian Department of Transport (the original audio recording is also available):

1906:14 DSJ Melbourne, this is Delta Sierra Juliet. Is there any known traffic below five thousand?

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, no known traffic.

DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, I am, seems to be a large aircraft below five thousand.

1906:44 FS Delta Sierra Juliet, What type of aircraft is it?

DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, I cannot affirm, it is four bright, it seems to me like landing lights.

1907 FS Delta Sierra Juliet.

1907:31 DSJ Melbourne, this is Delta Sierra Juliet, the aircraft has just passed over me at least a thousand feet above.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, roger, and it is a large aircraft, confirmed?

DSJ Er-unknown, due to the speed it’s traveling, is there any air force aircraft in the vicinity?

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, no known aircraft in the vicinity.

1908:18 DSJ Melbourne, it’s approaching now from due east towards me.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet.

1908:41 DSJ (open microphone for two seconds.)

1908:48 DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, it seems to me that he’s playing some sort of game, he’s flying over me two, three times at speeds I could not identify.

1909 FS Delta Sierra Juliet, roger, what is your actual level?

DSJ My level is four and a half thousand, four five zero zero.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, and you confirm you cannot identify the aircraft?

DSJ Affirmative.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, roger, stand by.

1909:27 DSJ Melbourne, Delta Sierra Juliet, it’s not an aircraft it is (open microphone for two seconds).

1909:42 FS Delta Sierra Juliet, can you describe the -er- aircraft?

DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, as it’s flying past it’s a long shape (open microphone for three seconds) cannot identify more than it has such speed (open microphone for three seconds). It’s before me right now Melbourne.

1910 FS Delta Sierra Juliet, roger and how large would the – er – object be?

1910:19 DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, Melbourne, it seems like it’s stationary. What I’m doing right now is orbiting and the thing is just orbiting on top of me also. It’s got a green light and sort of metallic like, it’s all shiny on the outside.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet

1910:46 DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet (open microphone for three seconds) It’s just vanished.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet

1911 DSJ Melbourne, would you know what kind of aircraft I’ve got? Is it a military aircraft?

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, Confirm the – er – aircraft just vanished.

DSJ Say again.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, is the aircraft still with you?

DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet; it’s (open microphone for two seconds) now approaching from the south-west.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet

1911:50 DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, the engine is rough-idling. I’ve got it set at twenty three twenty-four and the thing is coughing.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet, roger, what are your intentions?

DSJ My intentions are – ah – to go to King Island – ah – Melbourne. That strange aircraft is hovering on top of me again (open microphone for two seconds). It is hovering and it’s not an aircraft.

FS Delta Sierra Juliet.

1912:28 DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet. Melbourne (open microphone for seventeen seconds).

During the final seventeen seconds there is an eerie metallic scraping that can be heard. A NASA researcher as well as the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology have analyzed the transmission. Neither were able to identify the source of these sounds and to this day it remains a mystery.

After Valentich’s disappearance a massive search ensued. For four days a fleet of shipping vessels scoured the ocean. There were no signs of a crash or traces of any wreckage despite the Cessna’s design to float in the event it hit water. A witness who wished to remain anonymous approached investigators. He stated that on the evening of October 21st, while out with his family, they saw a bright green light flying above a small plane. Both of the crafts got closer to one another before they flew out of their view. Eleven other eyewitnesses came forward with observations that were all identical. Interestingly, in the month prior to Valentich’s incident, there had been a massive spike in UFO sightings in that area.

Manifold Photo
Roy Manifold’s strange photograph shows an unidentified flying object in the sky.

Roy Manifold, an amateur photographer, was at Cape Otway on the evening that Valentich vanished. He wanted to capture the sunset with his camera settings on an automatic exposure. During the shoot six photographs were taken in succession using the time-lapse setting. Once they were developed a puzzling anomaly was seen in the last picture: a strange object in the upper right corner. At first Manifold thought it might have been a developing error so it was sent in for analysis. There was neither dirt nor damage on the original negative. Other experts made a startling determination and concluded that the image showed a metallic object about a mile from the camera.


This year Valentich would have been celebrating his sixtieth birthday. Nearly four decades later there are still far more questions than answers. While many theories as to the pilot’s ultimate fate have been proposed they all remain mere speculation. Whatever happened during that final flight will remain one of Australia’s greatest aviation mysteries. What do you think happened to Frederick Valentich? Might it be possible that he may one day resurface? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Mothman: Legitimate Cryptid or Urban Legend?


In the world of cryptozoology, Mothman is one of the most mysterious and intriguing creatures. Many described him as an enormous humanoid with massive wings and large red eyes. Although it’s been over fifty years since the first sighting the legend remains just as strong to this day. Recently the unknown entity has had a resurgence of popularity after a number of sightings have been reported out of Chicago. Many wonder that if such a being exists then what exactly is it? Theories range from a misidentified barn own to a paranormal entity or even an extraterrestrial visitor.

Initial Encounters

The first of numerous sightings began on November 12th, 1966 in the small town of Clendenin, West Virginia. On a crisp autumnal night five gravediggers witnessed a man-like figure ascend from a nearby tree. Three days later Roger and Linda Scarberry were out driving with another couple. While traveling down an isolated road known as “TNT Area” they witnessed a seven-foot tall flying creature with glowing red eyes. When Mr. Scarberry sped off the being flew alongside the vehicle before taking off into the darkness. The group immediately went to the authorities. Each person was privately interviewed and all four people had identical stories and matching recollections of the events that had transpired. According to the Deputy who spoke with the group, their eyes were filled with a terror that couldn’t be faked.

The Silver Bridge Tragedy

Just one year after the gravedigger’s encounter occurred, Point Pleasant was struck by tragedy. The Silver Bridge, a main route into the small town, collapsed unexpectedly during rush-hour traffic for unknown reasons. Forty-six people sadly lost their lives after crashing into the river. That morning various locals saw a strange creature perched atop the bridge. Some believe that this entity was trying to warn of the impending doom while others feel that Mothman was responsible for the disaster.

Untimely Deaths

Mary Hyre was a news reporter for the local paper and wrote and column called “Where the Waters Mingle”. She was also very close with author John Keel, author of “The Mothman Prophecies” which would later become inspiration for the highly fictionalized Hollywood film. Hyre felt that her involvement with The Mothman investigation drew interest from the Men in Black. Her first encounter occurred in 1967 when she was working a late night at the office. A man entered the room who she described as having “large hypnotic eyes and not dressed for the weather”. Oddly, the stranger said nothing and simply placed a pen on her desk before exiting the building. After this experience the perplexing stranger began to follow her.

Soon Hyre had yet another run-in. While walking to her car a different man came towards her and instructed her to stop researching the Mothman topic or there would be consequences. Local townspeople also reported being approached by these men who claimed to be friends of Hyre. They wanted to obtain information about their UFO sightings and other paranormal events. On February 15th, 1970 Hyre died suddenly at the age of 54. She believed that the creature was a prophetic figure that had come to warn of upcoming catastrophes.

Many other individuals who researched Mothman had strange and untimely deaths. One such person is Fred Fried who was at the time working on a documentary about the relation of UFOs and Mothman. He died of a heart attack at the age of 53 and his film was never released. Donald North, a Point Pleasant native, witnessed the entity in the same spot as the Scarberrys. Not long after, he died as a result of a car accident. Jim Keith was a conspiracy writer who was studying the connection between Mothman, the CIA and the MIB. During a routine knee surgery Keith died on the operating table at the age of 50. Before this procedure he had said: “I have this feeling that if they put me under I’m not coming back”. To date there are 84 mysterious deaths that appear to be connected to Mothman.

Possible Explanations

There are a multitude of explanations when it comes to this enigmatic being. Since a  number of sightings occurred in the TNT Area some speculate that the region itself may in fact be responsible. During WWII the location was utilized for weapon manufacturing. After the war ended these explosives were stored in bunkers and the 8,000 acres of land were turned into a wildlife conservatory. It wasn’t discovered until the 1980s that the land had been contaminated by explosives byproducts. Given the severity of the situation the TNT Area was added to a federal list of hazardous waste sites. Some theorize that this chemical concoction seepage contributed to the evolution of a mutilated subspecies.

Others wonder if there is a UFO/ alien link to the Mothman. In John Keel’s book he states that eyewitness reports describe glowing orbs, energy fields and lost time. If this is the case it would also explain the Men in Black’s involvement. There are those who feel that creature is paranormal in nature given its ominous warning of approaching death. People who encounter this being describe it having telepathic abilities. Skeptics are convinced that it’s merely an urban legend or an elaborate hoax. However, if this were the case one has to wonder if a person would be capable of such trickery for over five decades.

Until the truth is disclosed everything is ultimately speculation. Perhaps with today’s available technologies there is a better chance of capturing hard evidence. What do you think about Mothman? Share your thoughts in the comments!