Bigfoot fever grips Pennsylvania as reports of strange footprints and howls surface

(Photo: Shutterstock)

By Ashley Adams

June 6, 2024

Pennsylvania has recorded more than 100 reported encounters with the elusive Bigfoot over the years, with the earliest reports dating back to the 1970s. Bigfoot believers and enthusiasts will gather to discuss these sightings and more at the Forest County Bigfoot Festival in Marienville this weekend.

Do you believe Bigfoot is out there somewhere in Pennsylvania?

The folks at the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization do, as well as the more than 127 people who have reported sightings over the years in Pennsylvania. In fact, you can read each and every report of the alleged encounters, along with the organization’s follow-up interviews and opinions on each event.

Bigfoot sightings have been reported in every state. Washington has the most reported sightings with 708, California is second with 461, and Florida is third with 338. Pennsylvania ranks in the middle of the pack.

Allegheny and Cambria counties had the most reported sightings in the commonwealth with nine each. Reported sightings in the state go back as far as the 1970s.

This weekend, Bigfoot believers and enthusiasts will gather to discuss these sightings and more at the Forest County Bigfoot Festival in Marienville, which runs Friday to Sunday.

Here are the 10 most recent reported encounters with the elusive beast in Pennsylvania:

Dec. 27, 2022 – Austin, Potter County

This reported sighting occurred just after sunset near the west branch of the Sinnemahoning River by a tree stand close to a now vacant building that used to be the Tannery Bar, according to the eyewitness report on the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization.

The eyewitness had been in his tree stand for an evening hunt. As he walked back from his stand to his truck, this is what he said happened:

“As I began to walk back, the sun had set, and the night was setting in, so it was dark by the time I hit the road that led to the truck. This was when I began to hear a knocking sound that appeared like it was coming from the direction where the clearing by my stand was. I paused for a second, initially disregarding the noise, and continued walking, then only after my next two steps I heard the knocking again from the same direction, so I stopped walking and listened for a few minutes to hear more knocking, but from a different direction, and considerably further away. At this point, I began to feel uneasy, so I picked up the pace, and when I met up with my father and grandfather at the truck. I asked them if they heard any knocking noises while in the woods, and both confirmed they did, in fact, hear the noises.”

Dec. 20, 2022 – Indiana, Indiana County

The eyewitness was at a residence on Shady Drive in Indiana when he reportedly saw Bigfoot tracks in the snow between his house and the next door neighbor’s house. According to the report, it was 7:30 a.m. and he was having coffee on the back porch while watching his dog.

From the eyewitness report:

“I was looking at the deer tracks in the snow and had 4 deer in the back yard the previous night. There is a large field next to the house. When I was looking in that direction I noticed some strange tracks in the snow. About an hour or so later I walked over to inspect the tracks.

“The tracks were similar to human tracks, but different. The thing that was most apparent to me was the distance between the foot prints, which are approximately 4′ apart.

“There were no shoe treads in the tracks. I believe the tracks were made sometime after 11:00 p.m. and 3:00-5:00 a.m., because I was outside until around 11:00 p.m. Then I was up around 6:00 a.m. but it was dark at that time. I didn’t see them until it was light.

The tracks had fresh snow inside the tracks indicating they were several hours old. I could not positively see toe prints. I have pictures of the tracks on my phone.”

Oct. 5, 2022 – Nanty Glo, Cambria County

This reported sighting occurred at 4:30 p.m. while a couple was biking on the Ghost Town Trail between Nanty-Glo and Ebensburg. According to the report, the couple saw a Bigfoot about 150 yards in front of them.

“He was walking along the trail towards us,” they said in their report. “We couldn’t see his face. When he saw us he turned and quickly walked into the woods. We were shocked at what we saw. As we went by, we looked into the woods and didn’t see anything. We didn’t stop then but continued on until we finally stopped to talk about what we saw.

“It was really shocking. There were no sounds or smells. Didn’t get a look at his face but as he was walking you could see how big his stride was. There was a huge space between his legs.”

Aug. 12, 2021 – Mount Union, Huntingdon County

This reported encounter happened around 9:30 p.m. off Pump Station Road in Mount Union. A group of friends had gone night fishing for catfish at a local fishing spot on Aughwick Creek, according to the report, which states:

“We heard what sounded like our first wood knock. Personally I didn’t believe or didn’t want to believe what I had just heard. But within minutes we all heard the second knock and were all speechless in what we had just heard. After talking about it for a couple minutes we heard another but this time it came from the other side of the river. Speechless yet again, we all just looked at each other and within seconds we heard another but this time it was right behind us and close. That’s when we knew we had to leave. As we were packing our fishing poles in the car we heard four loud aggressive knocks within 30 yards of where we parked. We immediately shoved the poles in the car and left. After getting several miles down the road we stopped and said let’s go back and try and get it on video because no one would believe us. So that’s what we did and we got three knocks on video.”

April 11, 2020 – Raccoon Township, Beaver County

This reported encounter occurred around 11:30 p.m. in Raccoon Township in a fairly uninhabited area of deep timbered hollows. The eyewitness was sitting outside by a fire all alone, according to the report:

“From way deep in the valley below me, and I mean it’s a huge expanse of woods back there, a couple miles to the next road, I heard a bone chilling ethereal howl. Then I heard it again. I heard it three more times over the next minute or so. Too faint to record but loud enough to hear beside a crackling pine fire. Each instance was three or five seconds long, sounded ‘WHOOOOHRRRLL.’ Started soft, picked up in intensity, then tailed off. Whatever it was it was very loud, very powerful, almost resonating like a train whistle does from a distance. I could also tell the sound was projected in different directions on a couple of the howls.

“I have spent a lot of time in the woods in my life. I’m an avid hunter, and an all around outdoorsman. I’m familiar with the animals that live here in PA and I know I didn’t hear one of them. I know what barred owls sound like, coyotes, dogs, people… Pretty sure this was none of those. Whatever made that sound was large and powerful.”

March 6, 2018 – Sigel, Jefferson County

This reported sighting happened at 2:02 a.m. at a construction site in Sigel. The eyewitness reported the following:

“I was at our job site tending a portable generator and turbo heater. I was sitting in my truck almost asleep when I heard footsteps/leaves crunching over in the woods. At first I started thinking deer? But as it gets closer I could tell it was on two feet. I hear it going back and forth several times. Almost like pacing. Then I can see in the moonlight movement with the footsteps crunching the leaves. It was definitely on two feet. Then it stops. All of a sudden a loud bang off the tank. I think it had to have thrown a rock as loud as the bang on the tank was. Then more footsteps, leaves crunching even closer now. As I’m trying to look into the woods where I last seen movement I realized it was standing right at the edge of the woods right beside my truck. I was paralyzed. It had to have seen me at this point sitting there. As I tried to get my composure I reached down in the door for my handgun. As I looked back up I could hear it walking off in the leaves. I started the truck and turned the headlights towards the woods but didn’t see or hear anything more.”

Nov. 13, 2017 – Wind Gap, Northampton County

This reported sighting occurred at sunset in Wind Gap. The eyewitness reported the following:

“I went into my woods, I was sitting at my deer spot and after sitting for about an hour a few deer ran through the woods. They acted as if something was pushing them. A few seconds later, a Sasquatch (7.5-8 foot tall, reddish brown hair) came following them.”

August 2016 – Moraine State Park, Butler County

This reported encounter occurred around midnight while the eyewitness was camping with his sons’ Boy Scouts troop in Moraine State Park, according to the report:

“Up the shore line I heard what sounded like a tree or rock knock. The knock continued for a little bit and was eventually answered by other tree knocks coming from two distinct locations in the deep woods. The answered calls seemed pretty far in the distance but still auditable. The original knock came from our side of the shore and was closer than the other two. This happened for a little while, the answering calls never changed, but the knock on our side kept getting closer to our tent site.

“I was actually astonished at how fast the knocks were moving down the shore line. By that I mean, the knock source closest to us was coming toward our camp site, working its way down the shore line. Whatever was making the knocks was moving at a good speed for being in the woods at night.

“Then the knocks stopped right when it felt like the source was directly behind us.”

March 22, 2016 – between Wilkes-Barre and Scranton, Luzerne County

This reported sighting happened between Wilkes-Barre and Scranton around 2:30 a.m., according to the report:

“I saw a large (possible) bigfoot! This was upright walking thru my back yard! It was taller than my swing set, wider than myself and saw eyes shine! All from my kitchen window!”

Aug. 15, 2015 – Grove City, Mercer County

This reported sighting occurred around 8:20 p.m. in Grove City, according to the report:

“My family and I were driving home along I-70 south towards Pittsburgh. We had just passed the Grove City Outlets exit, about one or two miles, when I glanced to my left across the road and saw a Bigfoot walking back into the woods from the roadside brush. It was black and about 7 or 8 feet tall. Didn’t see the face but saw it from the upper thighs up walking sideways through the brush and into the woods.”

Author

  • Ashley Adams

    In her 16 years in the communications industry, Ashley Adams has worn many hats, including news reporter, public relations writer, marketing specialist, copy editor and technical writer. Ashley grew up in Berks County and has since returned to her roots to raise her three children.

CATEGORIES: LOCAL HISTORY
Related Stories
Share This