Our Utah post from yesterday made a brief mention of the Utah Yeti, the semi-official mascot of Utah skiing. Little did we know that mention would be enough to unearth devoted followers of another legendary beast – the Skunk Ape.
SkunkApe.Info is run by Dave Shealy, who heads up the Skunk Ape Research Headquarters and Trail Lakes Campground in Ochopee, Florida.
Dave is a proud American who firmly believes in the existence of the Skunk Ape and has dedicated his life to proving its existence. So what is a Skunk Ape, you ask? Read below:
Skunk Ape is a large hairy, bipedal mammal that calls the Florida Everglades home. They have been spotted as far north as Tallahassee and as far south as Lostman’s River. Large adult males reportably weigh in excess of 450 lbs and stand 6 to 7 feet tall. Some believe that this biped is part of the same species as the famed Big Foot.
The smell of a Skunk Ape has been reported to be similar to rotten eggs or methane, possibly because, as some say, they hide in alligator dens filled with swamp gas and rotting animal cadavers. Others speculate that they smell because they never bathe. Maybe it is a combination of both.
So basically, it is a Floridian Bigfoot. You can learn more about the Skunk Ape in the Research Field Guide, complete with illustrations:
Is there photographic proof of the existence of the Skunk Ape? Of course!
I dare you to deny the existence of Skunk Ape now.
The bottom line is that SkunkApe.Info is a treasure trove of knowledge about this largely misunderstood, gentle creature. Spend some time on there learning about Skunk Ape, and next time you’re in Ochopee, Florida you can stop by Skunk Ape HQ to say hi to Dave and maybe go out on a Skunk Ape safari of your own.
I leave you with a few of the Quotes from Dave, a rotating feature on the lower left of the home page where Dave leaves nuggets of knowledge on the Skunk Ape & life in general:
“I feel strongly that it’s just my purpose, that it’s what I have to do. It’s not an obsession. But it seems like it’s the way my life’s come together.”
“Why do Skunk Apes smell so bad? They hide in the air pockets of underground alligator dens, and their bodies absorb a lot of stinky methane. It’s hot down here. And the Skunk Ape sweats and it doesn’t bathe.”
“I don’t want to get into any big conspiracy theories but there’s a lot going on down here.”
“You’ve heard of the Everglades Restoration Program? And the cost: what is it? $300 billion? [Editor's Note: Actual Cost Estimate as of 2006 - $11 billion] Why would the government invest that kind of money into an area that’s nothing but a swamp? They are making huge tracts of the Everglades off-limits. The first thing that I think of when I hear “off-limits” is that there’s something going on out there.”
“A lot of people thought the Skunk Ape was a hoax. They said it cheapened my business. Made me look like some kind of flim-flam man, out to take advantage of tourists. That’s not my intention at all.”
“My biggest hope is that somebody will call me and tell me ‘Yes, I have a hand, a foot and a skull.”
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