Beware the Hairy Man: The First Sasquatch

To the Yokut Indians living in the southern Sierra mountains of California, Big Foot was a creature that was a great big giant with long, shaggy hair. He was good in a way, because he ate the animals that might harm people. He kept the Grizzly Bear, Mountain Lion, Wolf, and other larger animals away. During hot summer nights all the animals would come out together down from the hills to drink out of the Tule River. Big Foot liked to catch animals down by the river. He would eat them up bones and all.

Parents always warned their children, "Don't go near the river at night. You may run into Big Foot."

It was pleasant and cool down by the river on hot summer nights. That is when grown ups liked to take a swim. Even though people feared that Big Foot, the hairy man, might come to the river, people still liked to take a swim at night. Now Big Foot usually eats animals, but parents said, "If he can't find any animals and he is very hungry, he will eat you. Big Foot, the hairy man, doesn't leave a speck or trace. He eats you up bones and all. We won't know where you have gone or what has happened to you." Some people say Big Foot, the hairy man, still roams around the hills near Tule River. He comes along the trail at night and scares a lot of people. When you hear him you know it is something very big because he makes a big sound, not a little sound. Children are cautioned not to make fun of his picture on the painted rock or play around that place because he would hear you and come after you. Parents warned their children, "You are going to meet him on the road if you stay out too late at night." The children have learned always to come home early.

The Yukot Indian Tribe from the southern Sierras were the first to document Sasquatch, leaving images of the beast and its family on rocks. The painted rock grotto, located east of Porterville, California contains the first picture of a large hairy beast and its immediate family. mama Sasquatch, and baby, too.

Daddy Sasquatch

Mama Sasquatch

Baby Sasquatch

When People Took Over People spread out all over the mountains, taking all the land and eating all the food. Animals didn't have anyplace to go. Eagle, chief of all the animals, told the animals that they could not remain in their traditional places, because people had taken them. He asked them where they wished to go. Eagle said, "What are you going to become? What will you be? I myself am going to fly high up in the air and live on squirrels and sometimes on deer." Hairy Man said, "I will go live among the big trees (Giant Sequoias) and hunt only at night when people are asleep." Dog said, "I will stay with people and be their friend, I will follow them, and perhaps I will get something to eat in that way." Buzzard said, "When something dies I will smell it. I will go there and eat it." Crow said, "When I see something lying dead, I will pick out its eyes." Coyote said, "I will go about killing grasshoppers. That is how I will live." Hummingbird said, "I will go to the flowers and get my food from them." Condor said, "I will not stay here. I will go far off into the mountains. Perhaps I will find something to eat there." Woodpecker said, "I will get acorns and make holes in the trees [to store them in]." Bluejay said, "I am going to make trees grow over the hills. I will work." Rat said, "I will go where there are old trees and make my house in them." Mouse said, "I will run here, there, and everywhere. I shall have holes, and perhaps I can live in that way." Trout said, "I will live in the water and perhaps I can find something to eat there." That was the time when animals stopped being like us and scattered.

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