Sasquatch Sleuths

FERNDALE – It was a frigid, snowy Christmas Eve just weeks ago and 10-year-old cousins Libby and Json (yes, Json) received a visit they will never forget. Yes, Santa made his delivery but the best present for the two intrepid detectives came in the form of huge footprints in the snow that came alarmingly close to their Ferndale house.

But what creature from a Saturday matinée could have made those tracks? The diminutive detectives decided to do some investigating armed with a measuring tape, a camera, a journal and their curiosity.

They discovered the gait was unusually long. The depth indicated a beast that weighed three times more than a human. The footprints were up to 21 inches in length.

“The tracks came from the woods and across front yard, then back into the woods across from the driveway,”said Libby, who knows a fake when she sees one. “If you can’t see the toe prints its a hoax but we can see the toes.” Their only conclusion: Bigfoot!

Libby lives in Colorado with Parents Erik and Brianne (Anderson) Peltz. Brianne is from a fourth-generation Ferndale family and she loves to visit her parents, Terri and Brian Anderson on holidays.

Json Merringer attends Mr. Pitts fifth grade class at Bigfork Elementary School. His parents are Dani and Dan Merringer. His grandparents, the Andersons, live in Ferndale. The most recent incident was not their first. The duo formed a Bigfoot sleuthing club and they’ve been documenting their research for almost three years now.

“Json introduced me to it,” Libby said. “He invited me out to the woods. We do lots of research. I like being a kind of detective in our little group.”

Though Json says we shouldn’t be afraid of Bigfoot, Libby admits she gets the willies when a big, hairy beast could be nearby.

Json said their research is not limited to tracks. He learned in school about keeping a journal and the pair have an extensive log of their collections and experiences.

“One day, we were walking around trying and we saw some broken sticks that came from so high up no human could reach them,” he said.

He doesn’t find it unusual to find so much evidence in this area.

“There are many (Bigfoots),” he said. “But we can’t see them because they are usually brown and black and they blend in with the trees.” He said some Bigfoot animals are up to 10 feet tall, weight about 600 pounds and have feet 17 to 21 inches long.

Recent tracks aside, the cousins had a very memorable outing before.

“One time we went, a mule was going crazy,” Json said. “It was about 4:30 (p.m.). We followed tracks and saw bark broken off a tree. Then we went up a hill and we found fresh urine. He must have hopped a bobbed-wire fence and left hair on it so we collected it.” And so the pint-sized Sasquatch sleuths are dedicated to forge on with plans to create a social media page with which to share their exploits.

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