One night 54 years ago, Cliff Crook says, he stared into the face of a Northwest boogeyman. He called it a “woods giant.” Today, it’s better known as Bigfoot.
“I had a real terrifying encounter,” said Crook, now 69. “It’s not something that goes away.”
He remembers the towering size, the ape-like face, the gurgling sound in the dark. He remembers the dog that charged into the bushes and then was tossed out and crashed onto the ground.
He remembers running away with three younger camping buddies. They arrived home a mile away, their bare feet bleeding. His friends’ parents weren’t too happy with him.
“They didn’t want them around me anymore,” Crook recalled last week.
The encounter fueled a lifelong obsession by Crook with the hairy ape-like creature. He calls himself “America’s first Bigfoot investigator.” Others call him a hoaxer and an attention grabber.
Crook appeared on the front page of The News Tribune in 1990 when some mushroom hunters found possible Bigfoot footprints near the Nisqually River. Crook found the prints credible.
He called The News Tribune recently to announce more Bigfoot footprint news, what he called the biggest find in 30 years.
STATUE MOVES DOWNTOWN
The basement den in Crook’s Bothell-area home used to be Bigfoot Central, where over the years he regaled visitors from around the world with stories of his encounter and the investigations into sightings, footprints and efforts to find the ape-like creature.
Maps, drawings, newspaper clippings, footprint casts and Bigfoot memorabilia decorated the walls. An 8-foot-tall carved wooden Bigfoot sat on the front lawn to welcome visitors.
The basement is now home to the Doo-Wop Den, a 1950s style café filled with 1950s kitsch and collectibles. The Bigfoot statue graces a market in downtown Bothell.
Crook’s son, Cary, in Polson, Mont., carries on the family research and keeps the Bigfoot Central Web site – bigfootcentral1.com – updated.
Nevertheless, the elder Crook still wears a big metal pinky ring showing the head of sasquatch. (His wife, Carol, gave it to him.) And he’s enthusiastic about new research he says shows Bigfoot’s ancestors once roamed the Texas countryside side by side with dinosaurs.
“There’s never been fossil evidence of Bigfoot,” Crook said.
And now there is, he said, pointing at the casts of two large footprints he’s placed on the den’s black-and-white checked linoleum floor.
One cast, Crook said, is of a footprint he made in 1999 from the rock bed of the Paluxy River, near Glen Rose, Texas. The fossil print, he said, is one of more than a dozen in a row in the river rock, a hot spot for dinosaur footprints from 140 million years ago. …
via ‘America’s first Bigfoot investigator’ finds new footprints | Bellingham Herald – The News Tribune | Seattle-Tacoma News, Weather, Sports, Jobs, Homes and Cars | South Puget Sound’s Destination.
Web site doesn’t work for me. Dang Cliff, your Bigfoot has no neck. Very interesting story.