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Location: Ophir, New South Wales

Event: Yowie Sighting

Date: 1982/83

My name is Craig.

I had an odd experience up at the camp ground at Ophir in 1982/83.

It was high summer, dry and hot as hell (if you remember that summer you know what I mean).

We (my father, cousin and uncle) were camped near the toilet/water facilities on a flat piece of ground above the main road (a dirt track that goes down to the creek some 50 metres away), between some trees.

My cousin and I became aware one night that something appeared to be interested in our day packs outside our tent. Naturally enough we assumed the local possum population were trying to get at our food. Boots were thrown out of the tent, detering the animal for some 5 minutes, more boots were thrown to no effect, then my cousin nominated me to chase the critter away (thanks).

I knelt in the tent opening and saw 2 coal red eyes peering back at me from approx. 10-15 feet away. This placed the animal squarely in the middle of the dirt road. As it was at eye level with me i am guessing (educated guess) that it was somewhere near 7 feet tall, allowing for at minimum 4 feet for the difference in the road level to my ground level, and 3 feet for my eye level while kneeling upright.

I threw our remaining boot at it (no, I didnt have a camera) and it, taking exception perhaps to my cousins foot odour, took off up the slope in front of me, past the tent then up a near vertical screed slope behind our tents (this is much clearer on the ground at Ophir than it may appear). I could hear it crashing through dead fall at the top of the hill (there are abandoned gold mines and at least one working mine up on that hill). The next morning I attempted to retrace the path the animal took, but was unable to even begin an ascent of the slope.

I had the impression of something at least part time bipedal (I am not going to claim more than an impression) but am certain it was not a feral goat or a kangaroo (seen em both in the bush on numerous occasions).

I recall keeping my ears open for reports that a large primate may have escaped from a zoo or circus. I was, I admit, aware of 'yowies', and having a lifelong interest in palaeoanthropology I remember being certain it was a primate of some sort - a large (huge..) male chimp or gorilla. Possibly an orang. As I heard no reports of such missing/escaped I came to the conclusion I had possibly encountered a hungry yowie.

I saw sign where the animal ascended the scree slope, however there was no evidence of footprints etc (it was very dry everywhere but the creek itself). I do not recall being aware of any particular odour.

I am aware of footprints and odour as I am sure a sasquatch walked behind our RV and then down the side I slept on one evening while my family was on extended holiday in the USA. The next morning we found an 18 inch long footprint. We were stopped on the side of a quiet road in the mountains in Oregon (I was 12, I don't remember where exactly) where people were few and far between. The sasquatch stunk. Bad. Rank would be another good word.

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