In the early 1980's I visited my grandfather's cabin on Lake Piseco in the Adirondack Mountains. He had leased (99 years) a large tract of land cheap from the Irondequoit Club and built a gorgeous rustic lodge style home on the slope facing the lake. He had right-of-way access to a beautiful sandy beach the Club had built on Piseco Lake to stimulate investment. Gramps was one of three people who built on what was a twenty tract development starting in the mid 1970's. (The last place wasn't built until the late nineties.)
(I shouldn't speak out of school, but the very name of the development, Arrowhead Sttlement, was based on a fib gramps told claiming he found the arrowhead he built into his fireplace on the property - he always laughed about that one.)
One thing my grandfather never laughed about was wildlife in the area. He had lived in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan growing up in awe of nature until leaving for Syracuse, NY early in life. He detested the industrial mess that Syracuse was during and after World War II and longed to return to life in the wilderness. (A great day for granddad was Miller Highlife, Pall-Malls, and a view of Piseco for hours on end.) Needless to say this meant stalking the woods for deer, bear, and whatever else he wanted to see (his passion, not mine) and he would take photographs up close as he could. (Framed the better ones.) He would occasionally hunt, but really never brought his kills back as my grandmother would have no part of cleaning, cooking, or eating any of it.
On this particular visit to grandfather's house, he had complained of noise at night that awoke him. This was an ongoing thing where it was to the point he would send the dogs out. Except after the first time he sent them out the "damn dogs" would just stay on the front porch and bark like crazy. They weren't whimpering, but they wouldn't go out after whatever was there, either.
My grandmother had passed away the year before so Dad would bring us all up during vacations and long weekends to visit and keep him company. On this particular night, a cooler night around the 4th of July (up there it gets hot, but I remember the night being chilly), the dogs started their frantic barking around 2 am, with grandfather promptly throwing the porchlight on and glaring out into the night. My Dad, the deepest sleeper ever, shuffled up and asked him what was going on. My grandfather turned to him and said something to the effect of "probably just some bear."
At this point, I'm awake in my room, hearing their conversation and wondering what the hell was happening out here in the woods? I'm a light sleeper to begin with, so I was awake and nervous as quiet and order was restored.
After what seemed like an eternity, I saw the "bear" silhoutted in the night out in the front of the lodge. The problem with this "bear", though, is that it stayed on its hind legs the whole time. It never made any vocal noise, and it seemed to be watching the house. It wasn't rummaging the trash; grandfather had to load his garbage into his car and drive it several miles to the dump out by the Piseco Airport. Since my grandmother had passed there was no longer any vegetable garden out front, so this "bear" wasn't here for food.
I'm quivering in my bed, a kid with no courage and this massive creature looming out front. I watched as, silently, this "bear" seemed to leap onto the front porch! No dogs barking at this point, I was so dry mouthed I could not scream, and this thing wasn't making a sound so the whole household was fast asleep. This thing was huge yet made no noise. Not a breath, not a grunt or snarl, nor even a squeak of wood on the porch. It loomed out in front of my window, yet never actually peered in. Instead this "bear" stood absolutely still for several minutes then turned and, for lack of a better term, glided off the porch back onto the dirt front yard. Just before leaving the property, it seemed to pick up a rock, which it tossed in general direction of the lodge, thereby setting off the dogs and another round of awaking grouchy people.
The next morning, I asked my grandfather if he had ever heard of Sasquatch (I knew this name from Leonard Nimoy's In Search Of... - which always fascinated me as a kid). My grandfather looked at me through his cigarette smoke and chuckled. My father, embarassed, rolled his eyes and dragged me out to the porch. He grabbed me by the face and said I was a fool for watching those programs that "scare the shit out of you" and that there was no such thing as Sasquatch, Bigfoot, or Yeti. Knowing my father, I didn't even bother relating my experience of the night before for fear of getting smacked for being "fresh".
(Was it "Bigfoot"? I never saw its face nor heard any sound. Was it a bear? Maybe, but I could not explain to you how agile this massive creature was nor have I ever seen evidence of bears hurtling objects. No one was assaulted; my grandfather never brandished a weapon as he would storm out to see what was bothering his dogs and the dogs were never harmed. Nor did they appear to ever kill or maim what was around the house.)
From what I gathered (overhearing Dad calling Gramps) the "disturbances" stopped rather abruptly as construction began on several properties nearby. To the best of my knowledge, no one ever reported any contact with a Sasquatch although 'Squatch sightings are commonplace in the Adirondacks.
I'm not claiming to have seen a Sasquatch (I hate "Bigfoot" only because it makes the creature seem like a freakshow) but I do believe they live among us.