Class 2

Coon hunter and dogs experience close encounter in Sulphur River bottoms between Doddridge and Fouke.

Report#
03080001
Occurred Winter 2000
(Submitted February 11, 2004)

Witness Observation

I'm probably going to regret telling this story. Everyone I know will probably laugh me out of the country. I myself for many years would hoohaw and laugh every time someone would mention these creatures. Here it goes. I live in Northeast Texas not far from Texarkana. I have lived in the Texarkana area for quite some time. I don't coonhunt anymore my business has become more demanding. Coonhunting is a sport that really demands a lot of time. I found I didn't have the time to devote to it so I got rid of my Walker hounds. I was so into the sport at one time I had hunting Licenses in 3 states. I had several Night Champions to my credit.

Several years ago on a cold night in Jan/Feb I believe it was in 2001 (actually 2000) - don't remember the exact date. I was coonhunting in Miller County, Arkansas. I don't know exactly how far from Mercer Bayou we were but I know we were in an area the ole timers call Thornton Wells.

While we were hunting in this flooded timber, our dogs split treed. I went to my dogs who had treed on the other side of the swamp. The other guys went to their dogs on the other side. I got to the tree my dogs were treeing at and looked at my coon and caught my dogs. Everything seemed ok so I decided to amble back toward the others. I could just barely hear their dogs treeing way across the bayou. Suddenly I heard something walking in the flooded timber. (Bare in mind this whole area is 8-15 inches flooded with brackish swamp water.) I could tell by the gate that it was someone coming in the flooded woods. So I called out to them thinking it must of been one of my hunting companions. To my dismay no one answered - instead all I heard was a deep throated gurgling growl and the awfullest putrid smell. The smell was like when you kill a wild hog and grab him by the hind leg and then you give out dragging him and put your hand up to your nose and the smell knocks you over. I also heard a whining kind of a whistling sound. My dogs were on my leash and were whimpering. Now these weren't just any dogs. These were UKC Lipper bred Walkers, they probably weighed in at close to a 100lbs.They would could rip a 20lb coon apart. Yet there they were cowardly crouched behind my legs whimpering. I knew I had seen them tear coyotes to shreds that had tried to come into a tree where they were treeing. I couldn't understand it. Still in all I was not concerned about any of this and got my dogs and started back across the swamp.

After a few minutes I heard this sound of someone or something walking in the water again. So I stopped and turned around and standing right behind me was a creature of immense size. Talking about the hair on the back of your neck standing up, I was scared. I don't ever remember being that scared. He made a hissing sound and reached down and took his hand and started scooping water and throwing it up at me and making a deep throaty noise. My dogs started chomping at the leash and growling trying to get at it, having regained their bravery. I grabbed the leash and tore out across that swamp so scared that for awhile I went in the wrong direction. I got to a big Cypress knee and caught my breath. I could hear the thing behind me sounded like it was about a 100 yards or so back. It followed me for a ways then after a while I could hear it across the bayou making a moaning sound and moving away slowly.

I got my breath and my compass and my bearings and started back to the truck. When I got there I didn't say a word to my friends about what I saw and heard for fear they would laugh me down. Needless to say I never returned to Thornton Wells nor do I plan to. For a long time I kept this to myself I even had nightmares about it.

The only person I ever told was an old coonhunter from Doddridge, Ark. He's dead and gone now but I do remember something he said to me that day. He said, if you're smart you'll keep that to yourself I know from experience that people will laugh at you and call you a liar.

I've hunted in the Sulphur River bottoms many nights but never have I seen anything like that before or since. I'm not one for tall tales but I thought I would share this terrifying ordeal with you all because it seems we might have something in common.

Sounds

I could hear it across the bayou making a moaning sound and moving away slowly.

Additional Observations

He must have been at least 8 or 9 ft tall. He was covered from head to toe with a real dark hair and when my coonbuster coon light hit in the eyes his eyes glowed like a deer in a spotlight. This was in a swamp, flooded timber cypress bottoms, bayou type area.

Time and Conditions

A clear moonlight and cold night in Jan/Feb 2000 around 1 to 3 am.

Investigator's Comments

Daryl Colyer

This investigation was conducted as a result of an incident that allegedly occurred in Miller County, Arkansas, 2000.

My wife and I interviewed the witness in his home on February 15, 2004. I consider the witness to be highly credible.

As my wife and I discussed the incident with the witness, it became apparent that the witness had indeed experienced a life-altering event. The witness made it clear that he will never again return to the area and now is loath to even enter any forested area. The witness stated that he has never been as frightened as he was that night in the Sulphur River bottoms.

Something of note that struck me about the incident was the splashing of the water by the subject as the witness and his dogs attempted to assess what they were seeing. Apparently, in an attempt to chase away the witness and his Walker coon dogs, the unknown subject splashed water with its hand toward them. The witness said he could clearly see its hand, which he described as looking like a "huge monkey hand." The witness added that the skin was visible on the hand and that it was "gray and leathery."

The face was also a "grayish color" with no or very little hair on it. The hair on the head appeared "slicked back" and the subject in general appeared "wet." The overall coloration was "dark, rusty brown" or a "similar but a little darker than pine needles" after they have fallen on the ground and turned color. The witness said he did see a "flash of teeth" and they appeared human but much larger. The witness apparently was haunted because the face, as he described it, was "like that of a person."

I found the reaction of the coon dogs of interest as well. Initially, before the witness established eye contact with the subject, the dogs were "nervous" and "whiney," and stayed behind the witness. Upon seeing the subject, the dogs became emboldened and it was all the witness could do to keep the dogs from breaking free from their leashes to attack. The witness felt that the dogs may have saved his life.

After the interview, I met with Alton Higgins and we drove to the general area of the sighting. It is ideal wilderness habitat, as is generally the entire Red River - Sulphur River corridor from Southwest Arkansas over to Red River County, Texas.

The NAWAC has investigated many reports in the Red River - Sulphur River watershed. It seems plausible that an unknown species could exist in low numbers along these rivers and associated creeks with their dense riparian woodlands. Much of the environment is heavily wooded, marshy, muddy, and downright inhospitable (to humans).

Additional reports in this county

Occurred 10/2000 in Miller County, AR

Submitted on January 26, 2008 Icon-photo Icon-video-off

Bowhunter has early morning encounter while in hunting stand in Sulphur River Wildlife Management Area. Read more...

Occurred 1/15/2000 in Miller County, AR

Submitted on March 2, 2000 Icon-photo-off Icon-video-off

Sighting in wheat field near Fouke. Read more...

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Class 1a
A sasquatch/bigfoot specimen has been collected (alive or dead).
Class 1b
A report investigation results in a sasquatch observation or the documentation of clear tracks or other forms of physical evidence by an investigator.
Class 1c
An investigator determines that a visual encounter with a sasquatch/bigfoot by a very reliable observer is a distinct possibility, tangible corroborating evidence is documented, and all other sources can be reasonably ruled out.
Class 1d
A visual encounter with a sasquatch/bigfoot is a distinct possibility involving two or more reliable observers, and all other sources can be reasonably ruled out.
Class 2
Investigator determines that a visual encounter with a sasquatch/bigfoot is a distinct possibility, the observer is exceptionally trustworthy, professionally trained, and experienced in the outdoors and/or is accustomed to looking for and recording details (e.g., biologist, anthropologist/archaeologist, ranger, trapper/tracker/seasoned hunter, bird watcher, game warden, naturalist, law enforcement), and other explanations can be reasonably excluded.
Class 3a
Investigator determines that a visual encounter with a sasquatch/bigfoot is a distinct possibility, the observer is credible, and all other sources can be reasonably ruled out.
Class 3b
Unidentifiable vocalizations were reported and there is accompanying tangible evidence to possibly indicate the presence of a sasquatch/bigfoot, the observer is very reliable, and other sources can be reasonably ruled out.
Class 3c
No visual encounter occurred, but physical evidence was found to indicate the presence of a sasquatch/bigfoot (tracks, hair, scat, etc.), the observer is very reliable, and other sources can be reasonably ruled out.