Iron Bridge – Shooting the Creature
Michael returns to the woods to hunt the monster that's haunted him
By Stephen Wagner, About.com
Beginning back in 2007, Michael L. and some of his friends have had encounters with a creature they believe to be a Bigfoot or Sasquatch near Iron Bridge, Ontario, Canada. In this third encounter (read about encounters one and two), their experiences go way beyond anything they could have imagined... because this time they took weapons. The results of this encounter, however, if true, might lend evidence to the theory that Sasquatch might not be an animal as we define the term, but something else, possibly from somewhere else. This story does stretch credulity (which is a characteristic of high-strangeness experiences), but Michael swears to me that it is true. This is Michael's continuing story....
TWO YEARS AGO, my friends Joe, Adam and I encountered something terrifying on my property, which is located about 30-40 kilometers northeast of the town of Iron Bridge, Ontario. Last year, during the summer, I encountered the creature again. Only this time I was alone and had no way of proving anything to anyone. The only proof that I had were the regular nightmares that I experienced in the weeks following.
This time, things went differently. A lot differently.We departed at our usual time of midnight to head up to Iron Bridge. We arrived in Sault St. Marie at about seven in the morning on a Monday, so there was no customs traffic to deal with, and the customs officer was nice enough to wave us on through without checking my vehicle. (I did have to pull over to have them inspect my Ruger 10/22 and my Mossberg 500B and fill out tons of paperwork, but that's unrelated to the story.)
We got to the town of Thessalon to grab a bite to eat and to prepare us for the next two hours of driving on bumpy, rugged terrain in a vehicle not suited for the trip. After getting off the last of the maintained road, it took us roughly an hour of driving to get to the gate to the cabin.
PREPARING FOR BATTLE
Immediately, something struck me as strange. There was a smell in the air. It smelled a lot like bear to me, so I took my shotgun out of the back, loaded it with three 3-inch slugs and proceeded up the hill with my two friends to start the Yamaha Rhino all-terrain vehicle (ATV), which would pull up the rest of our gear. It took about three trips, but we finally got all of our gear into the cabin. The shotgun never left my side.
Then it was time for me to get to work. I field-stripped my Mossberg .410, and removed the magazine restricter. I Rem-Oiled all of the moving parts, reassembled it and now had a pump-action shotgun capable of holding a maximum of seven 3-inch slugs, more than enough to take down an elephant. I then got to work on my Ruger 10/22. I removed the stock and replaced it with a bullpup design that I had purchased off the internet (bullpup meaning that the magazine is located behind the trigger group, giving you a compact weapon with the same barrel length). I loaded a few 20-round magazines with high-velocity "yellow jacket" ammunition and set everything aside.
It was getting late and everyone was getting hungry, so we decided to cook some burgers on the griddle, have a few beers and call it a night. My friend Adam slept on the couch with the Ruger, Joe slept in one bedroom and I slept in the last bedroom with my shotgun loaded, safety off right next to me.
I was awakened by a lot of commotion. My mind was a bit blurry since I just woke up, but Adam related the whole story to me. He had been sleeping on the couch with the windows open, letting the cool air blow into the living room. He had been drifting in and out of sleep until he had smelled something reminiscent of rotting animal and feces. He knows what a bear smells like, so he slowly closed the window, picked up the Ruger off the table and went over to my room to knock on the door. The moment before he began to say my name, something had thrown "itself at the side of the cabin."
Adam quickly spun around and dropped to a crouch and clicked the safety off the Ruger. I threw open my door behind him and stood there a moment, trying to get my bearings. I asked Adam what had just happened and he clarified the story for me. I glanced at the clock. It was shortly after six in the morning. Heh, our friend Joe never even awoke through the whole ordeal.
Adam and I spent the rest of the morning sitting on the couches, cradling our weapons and chain smoking cigarettes. We didn't speak much; we already knew what it had been. After eating breakfast and telling Joe what had happened, I went out to inspect the side of the cabin to see what type of damage had been incurred. There was mud on the window and a large gash in the roofing. The roof, at that point, is approximately eight feet from the ground.
We all sat down around the dining table and discussed our plans. My plan was to get a body. Adam's plan was to record this thing and Joe wanted nothing to do with it. After two glasses of beer, we had decided on it. We were going on a hunt.
THE FIRST SIGHTING
We loaded the Rhino with a day's worth of water, food, weapons and ammunition. Any MNR (Ministry of Natural Resources) officer who would've seen us would've thought we had come to take over the country. It was a damned hot day, and I didn't make it any cooler by rolling the Rhino through the thick trails at 5 mph. By five in the evening, we found a nice shaded area, had dinner and suited up to head back to camp. I drove a bit faster on the return trip, but I still kept my 10/22 "Spray n' Pray" aiming out of the driver's side door.
Upon arriving at the bottom of the hill where I had parked my car, I noticed something that I hadn't before. There was mud streaked down the driver's side of my car.
"Did someone s__t themselves?" Adam asked, referring to the foul odor in the air.
"No," I said. "Keep your guard up. We might have something in the area."
We rolled cautiously up to the cabin... and there it was in all its horrifying glory. Matted, disgusting hair, tinged green and dead-leaf yellow. The moment it saw our headlights, it dropped on all fours and ran into the thicket behind the cabin.
"Day number two, and this is it already, boys," I muttered as I shut off the engine and set the parking brake. I got out of the Rhino and handed Adam the 10/22. "How many spare magazines do you have for that thing?"
"Umm... three 20-rounds and one 10-round," he answered. "We're not following this thing are we?"
A sudden anger overwhelmed me. "Yes, if you want to stay in the cabin, stay in the mother_______ cabin."
"I'm coming," Joe said.
"Why the f___ not," Adam replied.
"Good," I said. "I want everyone to listen to every word I say. If I tell you to do something, do it."
They all nodded in solemn agreement. I instructed Adam to stay in front with the 10/22 and keep his eyes to the left. Joe would stay a few steps behind us and I would stand off to the right with the shotgun. After walking for about an hour, I started to smell that horrid stench again. We were getting closer. I could literally smell my prey.
"Are you sure it's legal to shoot Bigfoot?" Joe asked.
"Probably not, but I'm not too worried about it," I told him. "If I can kill it, take some photos and get them out to the media before MNR takes over, we should be on the front page nationwide."
"How much money do you think....?" Joe's words trailed off. I turned around to look at him and saw that same terrified look that I had seen nearly two years prior. I followed his gaze and could see the creature moving around a small "tipi" of dried grass; it was completely oblivious to our approach.
I dropped the tone of my voice. "Everyone, down on the ground." We all slowly obliged. My hands were shaking. Here was the moment of truth. I reached into my back pocket and pulled out a flask of vodka and took a huge swig.
"Anyone else need some?" Joe took it from me, took a sip and put it in his pocket. "Okay, here's the plan. I want you both here to provide covering fire. It takes a little bit of time to reload, so make your shots count. I only want to engage it if it makes any threatening gestures. Meanwhile, I'm going to flank it on the right. I see a ditch that I can crawl through and hope doesn't notice me."
"Are you f____ing crazy?" Joe asked.
I hesitated. "Maybe." I then continued, "If this thing notices me crawling along the ditch I want to you open fire immediately. Don't aim for the head; he's too far out. Go for body shots. If I get into a good position, wait for me to start shooting before you do."
Joe shook his head. "Whatever you say."
"Give me my flask," I said. Joe obliged and I drank the rest of it in two swallows. I gave a weak smile. "If I'm going to be rendered limb-from-limb, I want to be buzzed while it's happening."
I watched as Adam took a traditional sniper position and got a bead on the creature that was still moving around its tipi. I rolled into the ditch and started army crawling, hoping that this thing didn't hear anything. The last thing I wanted to hear at that moment was gunfire from behind me. Murphy's Law states that "anything that can go wrong, will go wrong." That applied to our situation quite nicely. As I was just orienting my body to get my head and barrel over the top of the ditch, I heard gunfire behind me and heard that horrible whiny, clicking scream again. I got my head above the trench to watch this creature get hit with four more hollow-points in the chest before dropping to a heap on the ground.
"Hold your fire and reload!" I yelled to my teammates. The next minute was tense. I couldn't believe it. We had actually killed Bigfoot! We were going to be all over the news the next morning. Then it got back up!
"Suppressive fire on target! NOW! NOW! NOW!" I screamed. The .22 caliber ammunition was having some effect on the creature's ability to stay upright. Each shot dropped it back down to its hands and knees. It was time for me to do my part and finish this. "HOLD FIRE! RELOAD!" I yelled as I stood up to full height.
The creature turned to look at me. This was the only time I had a good look at its face. It was terrifying. It looked like it was already dead. Its eyes were blacker than the night sky and the stench was unbearable. I couldn't compare this creature to anything I've seen before in my life. I fired a .410 slug directly into the side of its head and pumped in another round. It dropped back to the ground again.
"Move up!" I yelled, and I saw Adam and Joe move up slowly, Adam with his weapon still pointed at the creature. No creature in this world could survive a .410 slug to the skull, but this was no ordinary creature. It started getting back up! I fired two more shots into the head of the creature while walking forward. The stench, at this point, would have made me vomit if my adrenaline levels weren't so high. It slumped over again and I walked up to it with my shotgun shouldered and ready to fire again. I kicked its shoulder and it rolled over on its back.
Then it looked me right in the eyes.
At this point, I blacked out completely for approximately 15 minutes. According to my friend, Adam, this is what happened:
I went into a rage, he hold me. I screamed, I swore and fired all four slugs into the creature's face. After spending the rest of my magazine, I continued to dry-fire and attempt to pump another cartridge into the chamber. Realizing that I had no more ammunition, I did something that terrifies my friends and is told around campfires to this day. I calmly walked up as the creature as it was trying to roll over back onto its stomach to push itself up off the ground and kicked it, hard, with my steel-toed boot. It rolled back over to its back and I began beating it relentlessly with the butt end of my shotgun. I then pulled my 13-inch combat knife from my holster and slit its throat. I picked up my shotgun off the ground and walked over to Dave and Joe as if nothing had happened. I then asked Dave for the 10/22, asked him how many rounds it had left in it. Turned around and fired all twenty rounds, from the hip, into the body of this creature. I tossed the 10/22 back to Dave so he could put a fresh magazine in. I loaded my last three slugs. Then we waited.
LIKE NOTHING FROM THIS WORLD
I started to clarify my mind at this point and realize what I had done. No living creature could've withstood the punishment that I had inflicted on it. It had taken between 40-60 .22 hollow-point rounds, seven .410 shells to the head and face, a kick to the face, a brutal attack with the butt end of a shotgun and then having it's throat cut. But it started getting right back up. I didn't even bother readying the shotgun. Three more rounds weren't going to do anything but stun this thing. I don't even think a minigun mounted on a helicopter could've kept it down. Dave fired the rest of a magazine at it, and it barely flinched.
It then proceeded to stand up to full height and perform its whiny, clicky growl again, then turned and ran.
"What. The. F___!" I was speechless, but I felt I had to the need to do something. I pulled my can of Zippo fluid from my vest, walked over to its tipi and began to douse it with the entire contents. I lit my Zippo and the tipi immediately burst into flames. I walked back to my friends and all I could say was, "Why didn't it kill me?" No one could answer that question.
We proceeded quickly back to the cabin to stock up on ammunition, just in case the creature wanted to visit us in the night. During that time, I noticed something strange. There was nothing on the butt of my shotgun. No blood, no dirt. It looked like I had just pulled it off the shelf. Same with my knife. Not a drop of blood on the entire blade.
No one slept that night, and nothing attacked the cabin. We left the next morning, four days ahead of schedule. I don't believe I'm going to be going to my cabin again. After seeing what I have seen, this creature is not of this world. If bullets and bayonets couldn't harm it... what could?