North Carolina’s recently reported Bigfoot sighting got a little stranger this week, with claims by a Minnesota tourist and shaman that he was mistaken for a Sasquatch in the woods of McDowell County.
Gawain MacGregor – who believes in the existence of Bigfoot – says the mistake was easy to make, because he was clad head to toe in animal skins at the time as part of a ritual to “become one with nature.”
“I know they mistook me for Bigfoot,” says MacGregor, 36.
The group Bigfoot 911, which reported the sighting last week, sent out a statement Thursday questioning MacGregor’s story, citing discrepancies and a lack of details. John Bruner of Bigfoot 911 says he has reached out to MacGregor on social media for answers.
“I believe this man didn’t contact us in the woods or otherwise,” said Bruner, who first reported the Bigfoot sighting on Facebook. “The animal I saw was around 8 feet tall. Mr. MacGregor doesn’t look that tall or that wide in any of his photos. … I believe this man is … looking for a way to get some air time to promote his blog.”
MacGregor called the Observer (and other media outlets) this week to say he was vacationing near Pisgah National Forest to practice the rituals of Enkiduism, which includes the wearing of hair-covered animal skins and wandering in the forest. He has a website, Enkiduism.blogspot.com.
“I guess when you boil it down, Enkiduism is Sasquatch worship. It’s belief in the divine nature of Sasquatch,” he says.
MacGregor says he was doing just that the night of the alleged Bigfoot sighting in McDowell County. He’s not specific about a location or the time, other than to say it was a couple of hours after dark.
“I just sort of wander blindly … and I saw a group of people and they saw me. They froze,” MacGregor told the Observer. “I was close enough to camp that I turned around and started running away. … They weren’t following me. I continued to my camp, took off my clothes and went to sleep. … They didn’t approach me. They also didn’t run away. Their jaws didn’t drop. They just froze.”
MacGregor has also spoken to the New York Post, which reported he works as a plumber in Minneapolis and has had Sasquatch encounters in three states. He told the Post that he called police in the area “to set the record straight” after hearing some people claimed seeing a Bigfoot. “I’m not sure they took me too seriously,” he told the Post.
Bigfoot 911 is a volunteer group based in McDowell County that investigates reports of Bigfoot sightings in that area. A team of seven people were in the McDowell County woods Friday at about 11 p.m., when Bruner said he saw a Bigfoot leaning against a tree.
His report, first posted on a Bigfoot 911 Facebook discussion group, has gotten national attention.
On Thursday, Bruner said what he saw in the woods that night looked nothing like the “fuzzy hair” skins suit MacGregor was allegedly wearing.
“If he was in the woods, why did he run away?” asks Bruner.