Bigfoot in Africa

Deep in the Knysna forest on the Southern tip of Africa, there roams an elusive group of wild elephant, long believed to be extinct by the local population, and hence forgotten along with the memories of yesterday. These beautiful soft-footed grey giants are happy to be ghosts in the memory of man, with whom they have a long and sad history. Here in the forest and the fynbos covered mountains they have found their last refuge from the outside world.

DNA tests of dung have confirmed at least 12 of these elephant still roam wild, and studies have shown that because of a lack of predators they are uncharacteristically bad mothers when compared to African Savanna Elephant. Nevertheless the herd seems to have stayed mostly hidden, save for a whisper to those who would hear, and at a constant number throughout the years.

The elephants aren’t the only secret the forest keeps hidden under the canopy. Somewhere between the giant Yellow Woods and their offspring there dwells a hairy hominid known to the indigenous people and the locals as Otang. This creature is even more mysterious than the black leopard that has been seen in these parts by very lucky individuals. The spotted leopards are seen more often, though their numbers have been decimated by farmers over the years.

Otang makes appearances to bewildered tourists and locals all over the area, and his story carves deep into the history of the indigenous people that once lived here. Their existence has been silently confirmed by wide-eyed homo sapiens grasping at the pieces of their crumbling reality.

Award winning author and wildlife expert Gareth Patterson has been studying these elephants for 20 years and in his time tracking the forest, he realized that something was studying him. Something that he was not expecting.

A trip into the ancient forest, we met early morning after the rain had stopped and headed into the National Park. Trees as far as the eye can see, following the trails of the grey ghosts and listening to stories of adventure and heartache, of bushveld lions and forest elephant, of dogs and fires and poachers and leopards and then something else entirely.

Entranced with tales of Nature we stopped to see tree bends that defy explanation despite their best attempts. Blackwood growing over into an arch, never before seen in this forest nor by the leading Australian Blackwood researcher they had contacted about this phenomenon.

It is noted that Sasquatch will bend trees over into arches and plant them into the ground on the other end. Those are found deeper in this forest, but this is simply an archway that defies nature and science. I took some pictures and we were engaged in conversation, when my friend noticed a bush about 30 feet in front of us, moving back and forth with fervor despite there being no wind. When she pointed this out to us, we looked intently on the moving bush, staring as it moved back and forth as if there was a hurricane in that lone bush. After a moment it stopped, and everything returned back to normal, we collected ourselves and headed off again.

Walking slowly down the muddy forest road, while engrossed in the sight and smell of the trees, we found human-like tracks coming out of the canopy for a few meters on the road and then disappearing back into the undergrowth. Take note there are no people and no settlements in this part of the forest and no one walks barefoot in this weather. We had come down this road not 20 minutes back and had seen no people pass us and we were not far from the road. The tracks came out of the forest for about 8 meters /+-26 feet before disappearing back into the overgrown forest floor.

They measured around 11 inches, the normal human height to foot ratio is about 6.6;1. That means you generally have roughly 6.6 inches of height for 1 inch of foot length. 6.6 x 11 = 72.6 inches which is around 6 feet in height. That is very tall for a woman or even a man in these parts, and the print is very narrow for a male of that height, thus we deduce it was possibly a female Otang of what age we have no idea.

On another trip into the forest, we found a small woven wreath hanging on a tree, this could have been placed by a human in the middle of nowhere, but these woven wreaths have been seen in other places that have Sasquatch activity and even found in gifting spots. I was tempted to take it, but I had nothing to hang in it’s place, so I left it there where the mystery remains just that. And in truth somehow I would prefer this mystery to stay hidden from the “world” with its penchant for destruction.

Personally, I believe that these hairy hominids do exist, but even so if I had to see one with my own two eyes, I would probably die of fright. If I survived the initial fright, I would turn into a new cryptid species, The Giant Chicken, and immediately take to low flying through the trees and ferns to safety without looking back even once.

It would take me some time to get used to the idea and get over the fear, luckily in these parts they are not known to be aggressive so we will definitely return to the forest, untill next time cryptid fans and sceptics. Take care and don’t go into the forest alone or at night 😊

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