Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Tom Fonner. He has been exploring the backcountry of Arizona for over 30 years. He enjoys the solitude and peace of the outdoors with a passion for wildlife, nature, and landscape photography, tracking, hiking, camping, and fishing. You can visit his blog at swbri.blogspot.com.
It has been more than 40 years since the Patterson-Gimlin film was made, and the quest to find Sasquatch has produced very little evidence. With the exception of the footage of Patty, footprint casts and some hair samples are the only things we have that are accepted by most Bigfoot researchers as authentic. In the current judgmental climate surrounding the wave after wave of hoaxes, stories, fabrications, and fantasy filled accounts of Bigfoot/Sasquatch videos, photos and personal sightings will never be accepted as verifiable evidence. With this said, there has been little accomplished to establish Bigfoot/Sasquatch as a new species of primate with the exception of its heightened popularity.
Organizations, groups, and individuals throughout North America conduct field research, gather information, have their conferences and meetings, and search the internet for clues to help improve their efforts. Thousands of people all with the desire to prove that Bigfoot does exist and yet, with all this effort, we still fall short of our goal. There are many reasons for the lack of success in this relentless effort to find Sasquatch. Focusing on financial gain and recognition first, groups and individuals that do not publicize or share their results, flawed field techniques, lack of knowledge relating to primate and other animal behaviors, inability to track or recognized animal movement in a given terrain, not equipped to deal with rugged terrain, and in many cases just human laziness with the desire to go back to camp and have a few more beers.
Understanding the nature of an elusive giant and extremely rare primate is essential for its discovery. Speculation of where it can be found is often tainted by those who believe it exists in forested areas that realistically could not support such an animal. People let their misguided passions for this topic supersede any logic or intelligent discussion to the contrary. People will not consider the fact that any species needs a viable population to reproduce successfully and thrive in any given habitat. There is also the need for any animal to have an appropriate food source that is able to be replenished and be sustained over time. These two facts alone would eliminate the existence of a large 400 to 800 pound primate in most areas of North America.
The lack of a unified effort and consistency may actually be the hardest obstacle to overcome in the effort to find and verify Bigfoot's existence. The current state of investigative research is proving itself to be ineffective and this is unlikely to change unless their is cooperative interaction between those that actively search for Bigfoot. Active discussions between organizations of their preparations, techniques, locations, and other information would be a start to improve results. This is only likely to occur with groups that already have a history of interaction and trust within their ranks.
In previous articles I've advocated the need for a National Bigfoot Research Organization with a network of regionally established response teams that could be trusted to assist in the investigative process. A national organization and its regionally assisted teams could also evaluate evidence to determine authenticity and guarantee those submitting the evidence their rights to recognition or financial gain. Regional teams could evaluate and map out an area for continual study with the time and resources to dedicate to a project where a local group may not be able to follow up on results in a timely manor. Information would also be shared nation wide leading to improved results in the field. The development and implementation of a national organization may also be the key to encourage universities and the scientific community to assist in a broader study of Bigfoot/Sasquatch in North America which would lead to necessary funding. I don't believe that success can be achieved without the funding from established institutions. The establishment of a national organization will be predicated on the desire of organizations, groups, and individuals to strive for the verification of Bigfoot as a species in North America over their personal self centered agendas. I firmly believe that without a National Bigfoot Research Organization the lack of success over the past 40 years is likely to continue long into the future, and the current surge in interest of Bigfoot will fade over time resulting in another myth and legend.