Creepy stories of cryptid monsters have been around since the beginning of time. From Big Foot, Yeti, Jersey Pine Devil to Loch Ness Monster, many are confident that these monsters exist just as many aren’t. But it doesn’t mean it isn’t real. And remember, a skeptic is merely a person who has not yet experienced it.
What are cryptids?
Cryptids are basically, by any means, a monster. A larger-than-life creature on land or in water that is seen and heard but whose existence can’t be proven. Cryptids are believed in by pseudoscientific cryptozoology subculture. Their belief is based on anecdotal or other evidence considered insufficient by mainstream science. While biologists identify new species by following established scientific methodology, cryptozoologists rely on folklore stories and rumors.
Whether the creatures are harmful or not, they are just plain scary. To those who have experienced seeing or even hearing a cryptid (like the blood-curdling scream of a sasquatch), they are very, very real. To those who haven’t, they are nothing more than a folklore tale you spin around a campfire or a sleepover to get good and scared.
The Legend of Bigfoot/Sasquatch
Probably the most widely known and famous cryptid is Bigfoot or Sasquatch, as called by some. In central California, Native American drawings by the Yokuts were made at a site called Painted Rock. The pictures depict Bigfoot, the tribe called “the Family,” the largest group being called “Hairy Man.” The drawings are estimated to be 500-1000 years old.
The names the creature has been called varies depending on who is telling the tale. They are all along the lines of “wild man” or “hairy man” in meaning.
Various stories were told as to what the creature eats and what its activities are. Some regions depict them as being nocturnal and threatening. Children were warned not to say the names out loud as the monster would come in the night and carry them off to be killed.
Early encounters with Bigfoot/Sasquatch
In 1924 a group of miners allegedly had a violent altercation with a group of ape-men that live in the peak of Mount St. Helen. When the media published the allegations, the area became known as “Ape-Canyon.”
In his 1893 book The Wilderness Hunter, Theodore Roosevelt tells a story about an elderly mountain man named Bauman who claimed an encounter with a foul-smelling two-legged creature. The monster allegedly ransacked Bauman’s beaver trapping camp and stalked him. He claimed that the animal became hostile and broke his companion’s neck in the wilderness near the Idaho-Montana border. Although Roosevelt said the man appeared fearful while telling the story, he attributed the trapper’s folkloric German background had potentially influenced him.
There are less menacing versions of Bigfoot recorded as ape-like men who lived in the mountains and would steal salmon from the fishermen’s traps.
Description and character of a Bigfoot/Sasquatch
Descriptions of a Bigfoot vary somewhat, but most claims stand behind a half-human half-ape creature. They range from 7 to 15 feet in height with brown, dark brown, black, or reddish hair or fur. While some descriptions say the creature’s hair/fur is smooth and silky, a more likely explanation is their body cover is matted and coarse. Their faces are human-like, with flat noses and visible lips. Their eyes are said to be dark in color with a yellow or red glow at night. Naturally, skeptics blame the latter as other creatures such as owls, raccoons, or opossums.
Many Native Americans believe that the monsters speak a distinct language. Audio recordings were analyzed in the 1970s and found to be a definite language not of human origin that could not be hoaxed. These sounds also sound like what most would describe as high- and low-pitched howls, moans, grunts, or whistles.
However, one characteristic of a Bigfoot is their stench. Suppose you are out trekking in a wooded area and suddenly smell this overpowering odor! In that case, you might want to run the other way before you find yourself nose to nose with a Sasquatch!
Bigfoot/Sasquatch enthusiasts clamor to the popular areas in hopes of spotting a Bigfoot/Sasquatch. Take caution from the accounts that they are rock-throwing, animal killing, tree shaking, and uprooting killers. A simple backhand from one of these guys could surely kill you!
If you want a kinder opinion of a Bigfoot/Sasquatch monster, watch “Harry and the Henderson’s.” Pay close attention to the ending scene of the movie. If you are ever in the woods and feel like you are not alone, you just might not be!
The Legend of Yeti/Abominable Snowman
Much like the Bigfoot/Sasquatch monster, a Yeti or Abominable Snowman is a huge man or ape-like creature. It walks on two legs, has long arms and a human-like face, and varies from brown to grey to white. However, a big difference between a Yeti and a Bigfoot is the creature’s description of having long sharp teeth.
The Yeti is believed to live in the Himalayan mountains and is the basis behind the pre-Buddhist Lepcha People worshipping a “glacier being” as a God of the hunt. It is also noted that the blood of such creatures was used for spiritual ceremonies of worship. The animal carries a large stone as a weapon, making a “whistling swoosh sound.”
Early sightings of a Yeti
In the early 1900s, Westerners began to scale the many mountains in the Himalayan region, and there were often reports of seeing large odd creatures and footprints in the snow.
In 1925 a photographer and his crew reported seeing a creature at about 15,000 feet near Zemu Glacier. The photographer wrote that he observed the creature from2-300 yards for a good minute. Unquestionably, the figure was outlined precisely as a human being. It walked upright and occasionally stopped to pull some rhododendron bushes to eat. He describes the beast as showing up dark against the snow, wearing no clothes that he could see. When he and his crew descended the mountain a couple of hours later, they saw the creature’s footprints. The prints were roughly 7 inches long and four inches wide, definitely those of a biped.
A disturbing find
In 1954 expedition teams examined hair specimens from was thought to be a Yeti scalp. In the dim light, the hairs look dark brown to black, and in the sunlight, they were a bright red. Professor Frederick Wood Jones, who was an expert in human and comparative anatomy, examined the hairs. The hairs were compared to hair from animals like bears and orangutans. Jones concluded that the hair didn’t actually come from a scalp. No animal has hair running from the base of the forehead, across the top of the head, and ending at the nape. Unable to identify what animal the hairs came from, Jones excluded a bear or an ape. He was convinced that they were most likely from the shoulder of a course-haired, hoofed animal of some sort.
The existence of Yeti-like Bigfoot and other cryptids has never been proven and remains a mystery to this day.
The Jersey Devil
Probably the creepiest cryptid, the Jersey Devil, stems back to the Native Americans that inhabited the land hundreds of years ago. The most important information on the beliefs of the Native Americans is what appear to be drawings of dragon-like creatures.
The beast is described as a kangaroo-like creature with a horse or a goat’s head, horns, bat-like wings, small arms with claws, legs with hooves, and a devil-like tail. It has been described as 7 to 10 feet in height and makes a very unforgettable, bone-chilling growl and a high-pitched scream.
This mysterious monster has roamed the land for well over 250 years prowling through the woods and the marshes of southern New Jersey. There are even reports down as far as Maryland that the monster has been sighted. It is claimed that this devil-like creature has gone so far as to rampage through the villages, towns, and cities.
Many believe the devil is responsible for the brutal killing of livestock, raided chicken coops, farms, and destroyed crops. This devil leaves behind the annihilated carcasses as some sort of omen to the land dwellers.
The Jersey Devil is believed to be immortal, roaming the earth frightening and intriguing people for all eternity.
There are many speculations of what the creature is and how it came about. Still, the common belief is as frightening as the devil itself.
Popular folklore stems back to 1735 and tells of a woman known as “Mother Leeds” pregnant with her 13th child. The pregnancy was not planned, and the child was not wanted. The delivery of the child was complicated, prompting her to scream out, “Let it be the Devil!”. Now, you can only speculate why the woman would scream out such a horrible wish, but it is believed it comes from her alleged practice of witchcraft.
The baby was born an average human child but quickly morphed into the devil creature. Growling, screaming and whipping those in the room with its tail, its wings expanded, and it flew up and out of the chimney to take residence in the deep Pine Barren woods.
To this day, people claim to come across the monster, although, like most sightings of cryptids, they can’t get a picture or present any proof of its actual existence. Whether the Jersey Devil is real or just a myth, you might not want to take the risk of a chance encounter. Carelessly or purposely wandering deep into the Jersey Pine Barrens.
Read more haunted history from cities across the country at US Ghost Adventures. You can book a ghost tour if you are in the area of the cities we cover or simply take a virtual ghost tour from the comfort of your own home! Either way, you are guaranteed to have a hauntingly good time!