Things are “getting squatchy” in the north country after a visit from New York Bigfoot Society Head Field Researcher Gary Robusto.
Mr. Robusto, with seven years of Bigfoot research under his belt, held a lecture Wednesday night at the Woodgate Hall in Woodgate, near Old Forge.
The lecture drew a crowd of around 30 Bigfoot fanatics, all sharing their personal encounters and learning from Mr. Robusto’s tracking techniques and stories.
“Overall, the New York Bigfoot Society examines evidence of the possible existence of Sasquatch. We conduct research on possible Bigfoot activity and visit homes to investigate claims. We are traveling constantly,” Mr. Robusto said.
Mr. Robusto, 38, has been a paranormal investigator for 23 years, researches werewolves and is a ufologist as well, but he says Bigfoot is his favorite mystery.
“I’m an outdoorsman. I enjoy hiking, rock climbing, ice climbing … and so I am always in the woods and can simultaneously research Bigfoot,” he said.
Mr. Robusto uses various technology when on an investigation, such as GoPro cameras, flare thermal cameras, full-spectrum cameras and high-definition audio equipment, “just like in the music-making industry.”
Some Sasquatch signs to keep a keen eye and ear for are eye-shine, visible at night, and tree knocks.
“Tree knocks sound just like taking a Louisville Slugger and bashing it against the tree. It’s a tremendous sound. From my research, we think it’s a form of communication for Bigfoots, almost like GPS locating of one another,” Mr. Robusto said, and yes, you read that correctly. Bigfoots. Plural.
“We find from sighting reports that sasquatches are in family units. Usually, an adult male and female with young ones,” Mr. Robusto said.
Mr. Robusto tells of a breeding-ground in the Adirondacks where the sasquatches are consistently seen year-after-year around the same time, presumably for mating purposes.
“There was one interesting case, a New York City person who had moved to the Catskills area reported a sighting of a Bigfoot in the backyard, gray-colored. We looked into it and found that, miraculously, it was the same family unit we had been researching when a friend back in the 70s saw them, but they were darker colored back then,” Mr. Robusto said.
This proved to him and other researchers a groundbreaking concept: sasquatches grow old and turn colors as they age, just like humans and primates do.
Researchers have assumed the Bigfoot was a form of a primate to begin with, walking on two legs, hairy and tall. Mr. Robusto recalls his own encounter with Bigfoot while on another investigation two years ago in the Catskills.
“We were at a site when we began hearing their tree knocks at night,” he began. “I and one other investigator followed a deer path about a half-mile away from the sight and we heard something walking so we stopped.
“About 15 to 20 feet in front of us was a 7 to 8 foot tall creature that walked behind a pine tree.
“So, we stopped walking and everything was silent. It started walking away, and we turned our white lights on and caught the end of a silhouette.”
Although Mr. Robusto cannot confirm if it was a sasquatch, he can only say, “I know what I saw.”
So why has the evasive Bigfoot never been captured? Mr. Robusto explains.
“They’re masters of their environment. Take bears, for example. How often do you see a bear when you’re walking in the forest? Or raccoons? They’re masters of their environment,” he said.
Nonetheless, there are still sightings. At the meeting Wednesday, the sasquatch sightings shared by participants provided good leads for Mr. Robusto to potentially follow up on.
“I love this stuff because so many people are witnessing the same phenomena, so when they can come together and talk about it, it reassures them, ‘OK, I’m not crazy,’” he said. “People don’t understand this stuff until they live it, it’s hard to project that to people.”
The New York Bigfoot Society encourages everyone to follow their Facebook Page, @NewYorkBigfootSociety to follow their progress on the quest to better understand the elusive sasquatch.
Mr. Robusto will be making a return appearance for another lecture in the spring, this time, about paranormal activity.
“At the end of the day, there are many things we don’t know and don’t understand and that is what is exciting,” he said. “Keep it Squatchy.”