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What we know about Bigfoot in California | National Sasquatch Awareness Day

Oct. 20 is National Sasquatch Awareness Day. ABC10 in recent years has done a handful of stories on Bigfoot and his impact in California.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Bigfoot, or Sasquatch in some social circles, is a creature that is larger than life. The legend goes back decades, and especially in California, it has impacted communities in the northern portion of our state.

Oct. 20 is considered National Sasquatch Awareness Day. 

The concept of a day of awareness was first proposed back in 2009 through a Change.org petition, presumably meant to mark the anniversary of the filming of the iconic Patterson-Gimlin Bigfoot film. On Oct. 20, 1967, two people filmed footage of an unidentified subject, now known as Bigfoot, in northern California.

According to the Washington Military Department website, the legend of the creature goes back "beyond recorded history and covers the world." The site also adds that the "Sasquatch" name comes from the "Salish Sasquits, while the Algonquin of the north-central region of the continent refer to a Witiko or Wendigo." Highlighting the indigenous storytelling culture of many communities.

ABC10 in recent years has done three stories on Bigfoot.

Finding Bigfoot

Jamestown, California is a mecca for Sasquatch sightings, and one man's obsession fueled a 40-year hunt for the legendary creature. 

Bigfoot Investigator Jerry Hein is certain his tricked-out van will one day get the job done when it comes to documenting the always elusive Bigfoot.  

Deep within the forests of Santa Cruz County is an elusive creature that very few people have heard, let alone seen. That creature is Bigfoot and for the better part of his adult life, Michael Rugg has been working to get a recording of the man/animal.

And a few years ago he got it. 

“We set up our audio recorder and just then we heard a scream. It was exciting,” Rugg said. 

The video is a little blurry and the sound is faint, but Rugg regularly shows it to visitors at the Bigfoot Discovery Museum in Felton.

Why Willow Creek is the gateway to Bigfoot Country

Evidence of the mythical creature has been found all over the Six Rivers National Forest, but if you really want to see that evidence up close and in one place, you’ll find it in Willow Creek, the gateway to BIGFOOT country.

Talk to just about anyone in Willow Creek and there’s a pretty good chance they can tell you a Bigfoot story. The reason sighting or evidence of the elusive creature are so prominent in this area is because of the Patterson film.

Chances are you have seen the iconic film it on TV shows or the internet. Roger Paterson and Robert Gimlin recorded a one-minute film of Bigfoot in 1967 just outside of Willow Creek, along Bluff Creek in the Six Rivers National Forest. 

“The Patterson film gave a full bodied moving image to the myth and legend,” says Steven Streufert owner of Bigfoot Books.

Watch more ABC10: Sacramento restaurant dishes out breakfast on national chicken and waffles day