Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Book That Changed Bigfoot Research

     Not long ago, all 'bigfoot research'  consisted of setting traps in the woods of the Pacific Northwest in hopes of getting footprints, photos, or other evidence of the wild apes that were suspected to live in those mountainous forests.  Then, in 2003, The Locals, written by Thom Powell, was published. It did not have an immediate impact on what was, by today's standards, a small group of bigfoot researchers. In fact, The Locals, was dismissed by most researchers-of-the-day as (gasp) 'too radical.'  It went 'too far' by suggesting some outrageously different ideas: Bigfoot/sasquatch creatures lived throughout the continent, not just in the Pacific Northwest.  They interacted with select humans (even children) in rural settings. This was the first book to use the word 'habituation' to reference these situations. Further, The Locals asserted that the sasquatch creatures, whatever they were, were highly intelligent, that they had language, and even some form of long-distance telepathic communication. They (the bigfoots) knew full well of our interest in documenting their existence with cameras, and they were totally opposed to this agenda. If this wasn't bad enough, this trouble-making author of The Locals went on to speculate that there was some sort of interaction between the sasquatch and the UFO phenomenon! Still worse, he confidently asserted that, based on at least one well-documented case involving the Battle Mountain range fire in Nevada, the government agencies did indeed have detailed knowledge of the subject that they were not sharing with the public.   
     As you can suppose, this was all waaay too much for most serious researchers of the subject to assimilate back in 2003 when The Locals first came out. Over the ensuing decade, The Locals did steadily gain enormous traction, especially among the emerging 'new breed' of bigfoot researchers.  The 'too-radical' ideas of one era ideas began to resonate with the objective findings of the next era of more independent, more open-minded, more field-based bigfoot research groups that began springing up throughout the continent.
     It now is safe to say that, like it or not, The Locals did, indeed, revolutionize bigfoot research.  It redefined the limits of the thinking on the subject. It opened the door to many different ideas that were in direct conflict with the 'wild ape' paradigm that dominated the thinking before 2003. To be fair, there were others who also were actively pushing the envelope of thought in their writing prior to 2003. Peter Guitilla, Kewaunee Lapseritis, Henry Franzoni, and Robert W. Morgan deserve credit for suggesting ideas that were very radical at the time they published.
     One of the most practical and useful ideas that was suggested in The Locals was the view that the bigfoot phenomenon not only pervaded the continent, but that the big, nationally oriented research organizations like the BFRO were too large and ambitious in scope to be truly effective research tools. Rather, Powell suggested, the best way to study this vexing phenomenon was through the efforts of many smaller, independent, locally oriented research groups, each focusing on events and sightings within a single state, province, or even a single county.  Then, this emerging technology called the Internet, that only a few folks in bigfoot research had any idea how to utilize, should be the tool of choice for collating and sharing the locally collected information that these myriad local groups were gathering. Fast-forward to 2012 and look at the dizzying array of Facebook-based research groups that have sprung up like mushroom after a rainstorm and ask yourself how anyone could have ever dismissed the idea of a zillion little, local research groups as 'too radical'.
     Then there's the habituation or 'long-term witness' idea: While it is still ridiculed by certain 'old school' individuals, it is also very difficult to find an organized group of contemporary researchers who do not recognize it as a very promising means of gaining a valuable window into the hidden world of sasquatch culture. Even researchers who still doubt that habituation occurs seem to be generally aware of homesteads where repeated visitation does indeed occur. (I guess old ideas die hard.)
     But the very suggestion that the sasquatch phenomenon could proliferate in such well-settled places as Oklahoma was seen by most as utterly ridiculous in 2003. Now, the sheer number of sightings and active researchers in that part of the country boggles the mind. The annual conference in Honobia, Oklahoma is a virtual institution.  The sasquatch has become iconic in SE Oklahoma; synonymous with the Kiamichi National Forest around Honobia. A few locals in that area certainly knew of this for generations and a few researchers in the BFRO did too, but they weren't talking. The general public awareness of the sasquatches  in southeast Oklahoma began with publication of The Locals in 2003.  
    Dare we mention the government cover-ups? No one who has studied the sasquatch phenomenon for more than a few years is even attempting to argue any more that the feds have shared everything they know about the sasquatch. The withholding of information that was disputed in 2003 is now generally assumed. Research groups throughout the country report identical wiretapping, surveillance, and ludicrous denials by official of obviously-real sasquatch encounters and evidence. Likewise, nocturnal aerial lights and other UFO-style phenomena that were squelched and dismissed are now being courageously reported by research teams who stake out certain remote areas where recurring sasquatch activity is also being reported. Still further on the fringe, the idea that there may be some sort of underground cross-connection between the sasquatch and the ET's was delicately suggested in The Locals. Despite the seemingly ridiculous nature of this radical concept, it continues to emerge as valid line of thinking based on observations and experience in various places around the continent. And don't forget that in 2003, it was predicted in The Locals that we were one the verge of a new age of planetary discovery. Only a couple extra-solar planets had been discoveries as of 2003, Yet this lunatic named Powell predicted that we were on the cusp of a new age of planetary discovery.  Well, we're now up 500 extra-solar planets and new ones are being found every day. Dude knows his science.
     And finally, in 2003, this same Powell guy stated in print that early attempts to isolate sasquatch DNA were finding that sasquatch DNA was virtually indistinguishable from human DNA!  This was not due to contamination of the samples as it was widely alleged. Rather, it was because the sasquatch phenomenon was probably a manifestation of Homo sapiens relatives like Neandertal (yes, that is the correct spelling), Homo Erectus, or Paranthropus lineages that virtually all anthropologists insisted were utterly extinct. Then there's the newly discovered hominid fossils from the Denisova cave in Siberia. Here is yet another excellent candidate for a fossil connection to the creature we now insult with the name: Bigfoot. 
     Again, fast-forward to 2012: We eagerly await the publication of DNA research by the Ketchum team and others. I completely expect that it will verify what was stated in The Locals back in 2003: these vestigial human lineages are not as extinct as anthropologists have always said they were. And, when this radical idea is finally demonstrated to the satisfaction of science,  you can count on the anthropologists to say, "We knew it all along," because that's what scientists have done every other time the conventional thinking is shown to be false.  
      But wait a minute. Isn't there a contradiction here? How can the sasquatch be both a primitive human ancestor and somehow interacting with the extraterrestrial phenomena? Wouldn't that latter idea imply that the sasquatch were not a primitive human relative, but rather a super-advanced one, even with respect to our own technological  capabilities? Yes, indeed. And to resolve this apparent conflict, we must remind ourselves that the million-year old bones of our supposedly-extinct human ancestral lineages do not speak to the sasquatch phenomenon as we know it today. Indeed, the Neandertal or Homo Erectus hybrids, or whatever they are, have benefited from the same million years of ensuing evolution and intelligence-acquisition that we have.  Are we the same primitive being we were a million years ago? Obviously not. Why would Neanderthals, or Homo Erectus (Java Man)  remain as the unsophisticated cave men that they were back then. We made good use of a million years of evolution and education to become something much more sophisticated than we once were. Why wouldn't they?
     So, what have our ancestors or our anthropological cousins become after benefiting from this same evolution and knowledge acquisition of their species. I would say, they've become not just the nocturnal equivalent of us, but also the zen-masters of the planet. The sasquatch are nothing less than the super-sentient, super-sophisticated beings that we could have become if we had not taken the other fork in the road toward technology, materialism, resource extraction, and industrialization. In short, we humans have changed our environment to suit our needs and desires. The sasquatch, on the other hand, have done the opposite. They have changed themselves, their needs and their desires, to suit the earth's environment as it was given to them. They are the very definition of zen masters. They have developed much more sophisticated and sentient mental capabilities.  They have acquired the ability to satisfy their needs without altering their environment, to control their population, to communicate with each other over very long distances without technology, and even to communicate and interact with beings that appear to come from elsewhere. Mind you, we also have some capability to interact with the ET's, you're just not being told about it. In any case, the sasquatch can probably do it better, because they have used their evolution and knowledge acquisition to develop their mental capacities in the same way we have used our time and knowledge acquisition to develop out technological capabilities.
     I realize this is pretty radical stuff, but it makes perfect sense to me. And, my problem is, I think I'm pretty good at predicting where this whole bigfoot subject is going, since my last batch of predictions, as published in The Locals turned out pretty well.
    Thanks for reading!
If you have not yet read The Locals and you would like to, you can order a signed copy from the author by clicking on the link that is found elsewhere on this webpage (or click here). Perhaps you have not yet heard that the same nut case that wrote The Locals also has a newer book out which uses an entertaining fictional story to inform the reader about the sophistication that the sasquatch creatures actually possess, based on the new research and information gained in the ensuing ten years since The Locals was written. The new one is called Shady Neighbors. You can find an ordering link to that book on this web page as well. It has gotten great reviews on Amazon, even though sales of the book are about as meager as sales of The Locals during the first year of its publication.  When it come to books with radical ideas, I guess it takes time for the reading public to warm up to them.


  1. LOL, I love it, Thom.
    I will be ordering my signed copy later this week. Bookmarked!

  2. Good morning, Thom. I also have a novel coming out in November. Bigfoot Blues.
    I'd love to include a blurb from you on the back cover.
    If you're interested, shoot me an email or comment on my blog and I'll get back to you with a pdf or an advanced reader copy if you prefer paper.

  3. Excellent thom, and I'm very much agree with the theory that Sasquatch have benefited from the same million years of ensuing evolution and intelligence-acquisition that we have. Zen-masters of the planet would be a great title for a book.

  4. Excellent understanding of Sasquatch. My thoughts are the same. Sasquatch are truly The Zen Green (enviromentally keyed in) Masters and we can learn many important things from them.

  5. Thom,glad to have found your site. I will be ordering The Locals soon,and can't wait. I've been told many times lately it is one of the best books on our hairy mutual interests,in many,many years. Reading through your blog when I can,I see dedication,intelligence and hard work,,,and that's awesome. Thanks.