Legends of Bigfoot
Phillip Martin, a 79-year-old Quinault tribal elder, recalled a fishing trip more than 50 years ago. When an ape like hairy homnid known as C'iatqo (Bigfoot) threw a rock at his canoe. "There was a big splash, and there were no cliffs and all flat lands. I said, 'Well, the only thing I could think of was 'C'iatqo.' He's the only one around here that makes everyone want to just get out of here."
C'iatqo is one of the many words Native Americans throughout the country use to describe the creature that allegedly inhabits the wilderness regions of North America. Martin, along with several Quinault Indians, as well as members of various other Olympic Peninsula tribes were interviewed about the creature and its influence on Native culture for a show on the A&E channel.
Harvest Moon a Quinault woman works as a storyteller at the Lake Quinault Lodge is familiar with several native legends about Bigfoot. She tells the story of the "Glue-Keek," a monster frightens tribal members and prevents them from hunting and gathering food" "His legs were as big as tree trunks. His skin was as tough as leather and his eyes had a hypnotic glow to them. The monster started chasing the women through the berry patch. He took his huge, big feet, kicking over every basket of berries, squashing them on the ground."
According to the legend, warriors from various tribes gathered and made plans to kill the monster. They dug a hole, tricked Glue-Keek into falling into it and burned him. As Glue-Keek perished, he swore he would return to drink the villagers' blood. As his ashes ascended into the air, they transformed into mosquitos.
Whether or not Bigfoot's existence can be proven by science doesn't matter to Martin. He described an incident his daughter, who lives with her husband on the Lummi reservation, once shared. He said they heard a loud pounding noise outside their house: "Whatever was pounding on them had to be at least six, or seven feet tall. It scared the hell out of them. They thought someone was throwing rocks at first, but it kept repeating. By the time they got out there they didn't find anything. After a while, they said, "must have been a bigfoot."
Cowichan People gave sasquatch the name "Thumquas".
Most Canadians consider the Sasquatch a mythical creature, for the Cowichan People they are very real. Before the European invasion, Native Americans knew of the creature and gave him the name Sasquatch, which means "hairy giant." The Cowichan People gave him the name Thumquas.
One of the earliest recorded sightings of a Sasquatch by a white man occurred in 1811 near what is now Jasper, Alberta by a fur trader named David Thompson. Since then there have been hundreds of thousands of sightings of this mysterious creature in Western Canada, and in several states of the U.S.
There have been more than 700 footprints attributed to Bigfoot collected over the years, having an average length of 15.6 inches and an average width of 7.2 inches. Invariably, the sighting of a Sasquatch is accompanied by a very strong, very foul odor. Daily Colonist, July 20, 1905. Vancouver Island, BC. He is still wild, the Cowichan Leader says: "The wild man of Vancouver Island has again been seen by a prospector while out in the mountains last week near Cowichan Lake.
He reports seeing what he believes was the much-talked-of wild man. He saw something through the bush, and at first sight thought it was a bear and raised his rifle, moving a little closer, when to his surprise a man straightened up before him. He immediately lowered his gun and shouted to him, but the wild man at once sprang into the thicket and was soon lost to view. The prospector tried to follow his tracks, but because of the dense undergrowth was forced to give up the chase."
Not many people have heard the lonely, chilling cries and howls of Bigfoot. But those who have, and know the sounds of the wilderness, say it's an unforgettable sound like no other.