Creatures of a Bigfoot-like appearance are not exclusive to the United States, the Himalayas, and the wilds of South America, Russia, and China. Australia is the domain of the huge, apish Yowie. In the same way that Native Americans have a long history of reports of Sasquatch – and particularly so in the Pacific Northwest – Australia’s aboriginal people have long told of the existence of the towering Yowie. There is another parallel between the North American Bigfoot and the Yowie of Australia: a careful perusal of old newspapers shows that the Yowie, just like Bigfoot, was known of long before the term “Bigfoot” was created, back in the 1950s.
Many of the sightings of Yowies occur in and around the vast Blue Mountains that dominate the city of Sydney and what is termed the Sydney Basin. A firsthand report, from February 1842, offers a graphic description of the beasts. It was published, as a letter, in the pages of the Australian and New Zealand Monthly Magazine:
“This being they describe as resembling a man of nearly the same height, with long white hair hanging down from the head over the features, the arms as extraordinarily long, furnished at the extremities with great talons, and the feet turned backwards, so that, on flying from man, the imprint of the foot appears as if the being had traveled in the opposite direction. Altogether, they describe it as a hideous monster of an unearthly character and ape-like appearance.”
Then, on December 9, 1882, a firsthand account surfaced from a Mr. H.J. McHooey, who told the Australian Town and Country Journal newspaper the following: “A few days ago I saw one of these strange creatures. I should think that if it were standing upright it would be nearly five feet high. It was tailless and covered with very long black hair, which was of a dirty red or snuff-color about the throat and breast. Its eyes, which were small and restless, were partly hidden by matted hair that covered its head. I threw a stone at the animal, whereupon it immediately rushed off.”
And, make no mistake, sightings of the Australian Yowie are not limited to the past. In early 1993, a man named Neil Frost, who lived in the Blue Mountains area, encountered in the shadows of his backyard an animal that Frost estimated weighed close to 300 pounds, walked on two legs, and had a thick coat of hair and bright red eyes. When the beast realized it had been spotted, it shot away at high speed and into the shadows. Despite attempts on the part of Frost and a friend, Ian Price, to track down the beast on several occasions, the Yowie skillfully eluded them – just like its American cousin, Bigfoot, so very often does, too.
Bringing matters even further up to date, midway through June 2013, Australia’s Northern Star newspaper reported on a recent encounter. Journalist Jamie Brown wrote: “The latest sighting took place recently just north of Bexhill when a Lismore resident and music videographer spied the classic creature crossing a moonlit Bangalow Road. The witness, who has asked not to be named for fear of reprisal, said he was driving back home from a night of filming at Eltham and had just turned onto the Bangalow Road heading for Lismore when he spied a creature jumping a barbed wire paddock fence before briefly pausing at the edge of the road. Suddenly the beast moved across the two lanes of bitumen, raising his arm to apparently shield its eyes from the bright high beam glare of the approaching car.”
As for the witness, who insisted on anonymity, they commented: “I would have seen it for between 20 and 30 seconds. It was really moving at the time. It leapt the fence no problem. All I can remember was seeing this large black object with a solid build, lanky legs and long lanky arms. It wasn’t clothed … it wasn’t wearing clothes like a human.” The Yowie, it seems, lives on.