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October 22, 2018

9/28/2018 3:11:00 PM
Bigfoot enthusiasts visit the Home of Bigfoot from United Kingdom
There's something in the woods...
In search of BigfootAnne and Ron Pierce of North Whales, U.K., decided to take their research past the desktop and hopped the pond to visit Remer, the Home of Bigfoot, for their chance to gather some hard evidence to add to their knowledge of cryptozoologic creatures.  Photo by Ally Garbe.
In search of Bigfoot

Anne and Ron Pierce of North Whales, U.K., decided to take their research past the desktop and hopped the pond to visit Remer, the Home of Bigfoot, for their chance to gather some hard evidence to add to their knowledge of cryptozoologic creatures.

Photo by Ally Garbe.
Ally Garbe of the Press-Citizen

Last week, I read a new story from National Geographic about a rare tree kangaroo, the Wondiwoi, which was previously thought to be extinct after not being recorded for 90 years. The one and only sighting of the Wondiwoi was in 1928 in remote New Guinea mountains. This time, it was photographed by an amateur botanist, searching for a rare tree- not a rare mammal.

In contrast, Bigfoot has been spotted by humans since the 1800s and possibly earlier according to reports collected by Animal Planet and Discovery, Inc. across the United States. There are also Native American legends of a giant hairy creature, supposedly behaving and appearing similar to what Canadians and Americans describe as Sasquach, or Bigfoot. Some have made their life's work learning about the species and seeing one for themselves.

And boy, do people want their chance to see Bigfoot. Even if it requires flying across the Atlantic Ocean.

Anne and Ron Pierce of North Whales, U.K., decided to take their research past the desktop and hopped the pond to visit Remer, the Home of Bigfoot, for their chance to gather some hard evidence to add to their knowledge of cryptozoologic creatures.

Anne, a legal secretary for a small law firm, and her husband Ron, previously a driving instructor, have been interested in the supernatural for years. "He's definitely more involved than I am," Anne said with a laugh. Nevertheless, she's supported Ron's passion and joined him in learning about these creatures and on expeditions like this one. "We once traveled to Scotland to search for the Loch Ness Monster, but we didn't get lucky," Ron commented. "After that, we thought perhaps one day we'd have the chance to come to Remer and look for Bigfoot!" After all, the U.K. isn't quite big enough for a population of Bigfoot to hide in, Ron believes.

The Pierces spend some of their spare time watching shows such as Finding Bigfoot and doing online research, which is how they made their way to Remer and connecting with Abe Del Rio of the Minnesota Bigfoot Research Team for an expedition. "This is very special and specific for us," Anne mentioned. "It's the first time we've gone searching for Bigfoot."

The four of us were able to get together and discuss Bigfoot and the Pierce's visit to Remer.

"You know, people ask why bones of Bigfoot are never found, but of course other animal bones may be difficult to find, too," Ron said. "Animals that want to stay hidden are very good at doing so." Abe, nodding in agreement, adding that Bigfoot may also bury their dead and those that aren't buried are taken by scavengers or other animals. "They tend to go deeper into the forest or down into swamps when it gets too cold," he finished.

According to Abe, the spring and fall are the most active times for Bigfoot. "In the winter, it's easier to see footprints and they become more carnivorous. They've been known to eat deer, livestock, cattle, and even dogs." If you're hoping for a sighting, he suggests avoiding white or spotlights during night searches and to be concerned if there are young nearby. "Nearly 98% of sightings are non-confrontational," Abe began. "First, they'll hear or smell you. You may briefly see each other, and then they will leave." Bigfoot get defensive if they are being protective of an area or another creature. Ron, having his ducks in a row before arriving, supported Abe's lesson on Bigfoot for Beginners, like me.

In the last three weeks, there have been a few reports of Bigfoot activity around Remer, making Ron, Anne and Abe excited for their expedition. "The more you go searching, the higher your chances are of finding signs or hearing calls," Abe said. Residents of Remer reported hearing calls north of town. South of town last week, a woman reports waking up at 2 a.m. to a tree being knocked with rocks outside her window, a common form of communication for Bigfoot. Her neighbor has heard similar sounds in the past, and has also found tracks in his yard.

"These reports make our expedition especially exciting," Abe said. The group planned to hit the trails for an afternoon hike to look for oddly split branches and logs, as well as arches or teepees. They also went prepared with knocking sticks, ready to attempt to coax a response from one of the Remer population. "We've got our walking shoes on!" Ron declared excitedly.

Their expedition began with an investigation of the knocking that was reported last week, and then wandered into the Chippewa National Forest. Abe chose a trail he had never been on before, and according to Anne, it paid off. "After a bit of searching, we heard some mumbling so we started knocking. Shortly after, we heard more mumbling," Anne said. "We were using parabolic dishes to amplify the sound. We also heard knocking in response to us, although it was far away. Another knock from father away came through, too." The group also found a number of abnormal structures. Anne claims the way the logs were laid together couldn't have been storm damage; these were put together consciously. "They were too perfectly made."

As the evening continued, Abe pointed out a number of signs of Bigfoot activity for Anne and Ron. Around 8:00 p.m., weather in the Northland became drizzly and windy, so they had to call it quits. "It's very hard to distinguish sounds Bigfoot may be making through the constant sound of rain falling," Abe explained. "There's definitely something out there that hasn't been discovered," Anne said. "This experience was great fun, we are so glad we made this adventure!"

Searching for Bigfoot isn't all they've done with their time in Remer. "Although we are only in town a short time, it's been so lovely!" Anne mentioned. "We've so enjoyed shopping around town, everyone has been incredibly friendly. We even had a Remer resident do a call for us while we shopped."

This isn't the first trip to the United States the Pierce's have made. As a child, Anne's parents were travel agents, so she got the bug when she was only 15. "We love the mountains and traveling in the west," Anne told me. The couple loves country music and was married at Rim Rock, Wyoming, in 2000. When they aren't researching marvelous creatures at home, Anne and Ron enjoy walking with their yellow-and-white beagle, Bo, named after Bo Duke and playing darts. Ron keeps his vehicle spotless, so he's decided to make a change when he returns from exploring for Bigfoot. "I'm going to be opening my own car wash. I love cleaning, so why not do what I enjoy and what I'm good at?" Ron questioned.

Family and co-workers had a variety of opinions about their choice of vacation. "My sister believes, too, but my brother is more skeptical," Ron said. Anne's co-workers thought it would be a fun and exciting experience. They hope to bring home first-hand experiences in the matter to turn unsure family and friends to believers like them. "One way or the other, we're just excited for the opportunity to look for ourselves," Ron concluded. Before heading back to the U.K., the Pierces plan on visiting close friends in Minneapolis.

Whether it's a rare tree kangaroo or the elusive Bigfoot, you never know what kind of animals are hiding just out of sight. You'll have to get out into the forest and find what's yet to be discovered. After all, something can't be found if it isn't looked for.

Bill Hansen Realty

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