Searching for Bigfoot

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By John Last

MT JEWETT, Pa. (Erie News Now) – Did you know that Pennsylvania ranks third in the country for the number of Bigfoot sightings? A lot of those sightings were reported here in Northwestern Pennsylvania at Kinzua Bridge State Park and the Allegheny National Forest.

There’s hundreds of thousands of acres of forestland in these parts. It’s a perfect place for Bigfoot to reside…if the creature does indeed exist. Believers flock to Kinzua Bridge State Park hoping to learn more about the furry behemoth. Jason Burt works at the merchandise shop inside the visitor center. He talks to a lot of those believers.

“It’s been kind of big around here and everybody has different stories about where they think they’ve seen him before. So everybody’s always out here trying to look for him,” says Jason.

The park is all-in on the Bigfoot phenomenon. The merchandise shop sells Bigfoot stickers, magnets, postcards and t-shirts. The Bigfoot penny press is a popular way to get a souvenir. A reported Bigfoot sighting at the park is part of an exhibit at the visitor center. Kinzua Bridge State Park is definitely Bigfoot Country.

Matt Schenck is an educator at the park.

“I will say the visitors letting us know that they’ve seen Bigfoot is maybe a little more common than you might think,” says Matt. “But as far as visitors with photos or real evidence, they definitely are few and far between.”

John Stoneman, of Bradford, claims to have some proof. He took several pictures from his car while driving through the woods in 2013. Those pictures look quite convincing. The shots were taken four miles from the Kinzua Bridge State Park Visitor Center. The pictures show not one, but two Bigfoot creatures.

“I took a lot of shots,” says John. “I just kept shooting and shooting. They appear to be walking through the woods.”

John says the creatures were 7 to 8 feet tall. He also took a picture of a crunched-up speed limit sign he says was too far away from the road for a vehicle to damage.

“Yeah, it looks like somebody put their hand on the bottom of the sign and just pushed up on it. Exactly what it looks like,” he says.

John and his pictures are very popular at Bigfoot conventions and celebrations. John is a musician and wrote a song about his Bigfoot experience. One line goes like this. “I was a skeptic on that fateful day. But, seeing what I saw took all my doubts away.”


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