Tracks photographed on Ken Meuckon’s property in December of 2019. He used a six-inch blade for scale. (Submitted photo)

Tracks photographed on Ken Meuckon’s property in December of 2019. He used a six-inch blade for scale. (Submitted photo)

B.C. man asks: Barefoot Bigfoot or just big-footed bear tracks?

Frightening recent encounter brings back memories of strange print found on property

They were tracks like Ken Meuckon had never seen.

Approximately 14 months ago, the resident of Coombs (near Parksville on Vancouver Island) stepped out of his house and made what he said was an odd discovery.

Just before 8 a.m. on a cold December morning, he found several large and peculiar tracks in the shallow snow on his front yard. The tracks struck him as so bizarre, Meuckon photographed them, using a closed six-inch knife for scale.

“And the weirdest thing is, they just disappeared. They suddenly stopped and didn’t go any further,” he said. “And there weren’t any claws prints in the tracks either.”

Despite the mystery, Meuckon didn’t think much of the event until recently.

Those photos remained forgotten in Meuckon’s phone, when he and his dog were outside on his property and something unseen roared loudly in their direction.

“I’ve been here 30 years and have never been scared like that,” he said.

After asking his neighbours about bears, specifically if they had seen or heard any recently, he was told they had not. Out of curiosity, Meuckon showed those forgotten photos to his neighbour and asked for his opinion, who said he had never seen tracks like that before.

Meuckon then took to the internet to continue his research, where a Facebook group called ‘Bigfoot – Believers Only’ offered him some insight. There, he said he found several other tracks similar in shape and size as his own photo.

“For over a year, I had always thought it was just a bear print. It wasn’t until I went online to see what bear prints actually looked like, and they weren’t anywhere near to what I have. And that’s when I went to the Bigfoot page for the first time in my life.”

“In Canada, we call it Sasquatch,” said Thomas Steenburg, a Sasquatch researcher since 1978 and author of three books on the topic. “Bigfoot is the American name, never forget that. And before Sasquatch was coined in 1929, on Vancouver Island the term ‘Mowgli’ was used a lot. Especially by non-First Nations people on the Island.”

READ MORE: Was Bigfoot just spotted on a Washington State webcam?

The name Mowgli being a reference to the protagonist of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book stories.

“And just like everywhere in B.C., there’s been a long history of reported sighting on Vancouver Island,” said Steenburg.

He said some of the first sightings go as far back as the turn of the 20th century. One instance he spoke of took place in 1904, by ‘sober-minded settlers’ of the Qualicum Beach area who had been hunting in the vicinity of Horne Lake when they came upon an ‘unearthly being’ they described as a living, breathing and modern Mowgli. The settlers said the Mowgli was a wild-man, apparently young, with hair that completely covered his body, and ran like a deer.

Steenburg said much of the research on Vancouver Island was done by his late colleague, John Bindernagel.

Bindernagel, who passed away in 2018, was a wildlife biologist who sought evidence of the Sasquatch’s existence since 1963, chiefly on the Island, and who published a book titled North America’s Great Ape: The Sasquatch in 1998.

Meuckon told PQB News he also showed his photos to a senior member at the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre who said they believed the tracks may be an amalgamation of front and back prints of bear tracks, which would attest to their size.

B.C. Conservation Officer Andrew Riddell agreed that, upon inspection, his instinct told him they were the front and back paws of a black bear.

Meuckon said he isn’t ruling out the possibility of the tracks belonging to a bear, but isn’t ready to rule out other possibilities either.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

mandy.moraes@pqbnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

Coombs

Just Posted

John Hart Dam near Campbell River, B.C. BC Hydro photo
Campbell River watershed forecasts improve with rainfall

BC Hydro projects slightly higher resevoir levels and river flows after rainy May and June

North Island MLA Michele Babchuk. Photo contributed
COMMENTARY: MLA Michele Babchuk talks the future of forestry

‘These forests are important to every single one of us, myself included’

Heather Gordon Murphy (l-r) and Jan Wade, chair and executive director, respectively, of the Downtown Campbell River Business Improvement Association, are working to make the city’s core a safer and more welcoming place.
Downtown Campbell River BIA working to change perceptions

Downtown Campbell River BIA is establishing nighttime security patrols and targeting beautification

Carl Sweet (left) speaks with Rod Burns before the march from Logger Mike to MLA Michele Babchuk’s office in Campbell River. The men were from two different sides of the issue of old growth logging in B.C. Photo by Marc Kitteringham / Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Old growth forest counter-rallies converge on the streets of Campbell River

Pro-forestry and preserve old growth supporters argue and debate in front of MLA’s office

A strong showing from people who support the forest industry co-opted a protest against logging old growth trees on Vancouver Island that was planned for downtown Campbell River June 10. Photo by Marc Kitteringham/Campbell River Mirror
Pro-forestry supporters move in on anti-old-growth logging rally

Debates and signs dominate the scene in downtown Campbell River

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

"They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

The Sioux Valley Dakota Nation is working to identify and repatriate students buried at the Brandon Indian Residential School

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Denmark soccer player Christian Eriksen collapses during game against Finland

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Most Read