Lair of the Beasts: A Monster-Sized Mistake (Mania.com)
Date: Saturday, May 12, 2012
When it comes to reports of Bigfoot, I’m pretty sure that the vast majority of people I’ve interviewed who have claimed sightings of such creatures are utterly genuine, honest, looking for answers, and have indeed seen something very weird. And, occasionally and unfortunately, you get a hoaxer here and there. But there’s another category, too: mistaken identity.
It barely needs mentioning that there aren’t many things in Britain that one could conceivably mistake for Bigfoot, and so – for that very reason important reason alone – the number of cases I have on file is very limited. Actually, “cases” is the wrong word to use, since I only possess one, solitary account that can be said to fall into this particular category marked “Mistake.”
But, rather weirdly, it was a story that I was able to solve within mere seconds of receiving it from the witness in late December 2009. The report came from a woman named Samantha who, on a Thursday night in the final days of July 2009, was driving to her Edinburgh, Scotland home after visiting family in Redruth, Cornwall, England. It was, then, to be an absolute mammoth drive home, one destined to take Samantha considerable hours to complete in her compact Fiat. But, it certainly wasn’t a boring journey.
According to Samantha, while speeding (to the extent that one can speed in a Fiat) up the M5 motorway that links the south of England with the Midlands, she was shocked to the core by the sight of what she described to me in an email as “a 15 foot high Bigfoot running along a field next to the M5 with his arms wide out!!!” And yes, Samantha did use three exclamations marks!
Since it was impossible for her to stop and turn around, she quickly phoned her family on her cell-phone – all of who responded in skeptical but most definitely jovial fashion. But, for Samantha, the experience was as nerve-jangling as it was amazing.
This case is one from which we can learn a great deal, and I’ll tell you precisely why. Had it not been for a distinct stroke of luck, it may very well have become a legendary tale, one destined to play a significant role in the on-going controversy surrounding the British Bigfoot.
After all, if not such a creature, then what on Earth could it have been that Samantha briefly viewed as she drove along the M5 and while the light faded perilously fast? Well, I’ll tell you what it was: a goliath-sized creation made out of what I believe to have been wood and wicker – not unlike the Wicker Men used for sacrificial purposes by Celtic Pagans in centuries long gone, and most memorably and graphically presented in the 1973 film, The Wicker Man that starred Edward Woodward and Christopher Lee – which was remade a few years ago with Nicolas Cage in the starring role.
How do I know it was a Wicker Man-type creation? Very simple: on a cloudy and cold morning only a couple of weeks after Samantha’s encounter, and after attending the annual Weird Weekend conference in Woolsery, Devonshire, I was driving back to the Midlands when I actually caught sight of the huge, man-like form in the field in question, which was indeed adjacent to the M5 that I was on at the time. And, with a friend at the wheel, I even managed to hastily capture a solitary image of it with my digital-camera as we zoomed by, and which I reproduce for you right here.
As you can see, it’s tall, dark, has its arms spread wide, and is in running mode. All just as Samantha had said. The big difference is that I had the full benefit of broad daylight to see the creation, whereas Samantha’s view was sorely limited by the dark shadows of the rapidly descending night.
I can also say that approaching the “creature” at high speed most certainly did create the optical illusion of it charging along at a fairly significant rate of knots. When I emailed Samantha my slightly blurry photo, she said she was in no doubt that this is indeed exactly what she saw, but admitted to being mightily disappointed that she had not had a close encounter with a British Bigfoot, after all! To be sure, however, it was a cautionary experience for both me and Samantha.
Sometimes, I believe, a Bigfoot really is a Bigfoot. But, as this case shows, on occasion it’s something else entirely.
Nick Redfern’s new book, The Pyramids and the Pentagon, is published by New Page Books in June.