Screen capture of the infamous Russian dash camera footage of mysterious creature.

Russian Bigfoot?

Travel Channel’s new show Paranormal Caught on Camera debuted this week. The show highlights various international paranormal stories accompanied with expert “analysis” of the events. Unfortunately, the experts don’t debunk. Instead, they casually deem the individual event credible. Producers cram as many paranormal events into each episode. The first episode is mediocre and downright disappointing—specifically the “Russian Bigfoot” segment.

A dashboard camera in the car of two Russian co-workers captured a bipedal creature crossing the single lane snow covered road ahead of them. The creature appeared to glide across the road. The driver slowed the car to a stop, restarted the stalled vehicle, and then slowly drove past where the creature crossed. Then the driver placed the vehicle in reverse, crossed back over the tracks, and then (presumably) continued driving on. It’s presumable since all the video postings of this event end shortly thereafter. This is a shame. Viewers could glean so much more had the video continued to play. Possibly, that’s what the witnesses wanted.

The video was posted on November 17, 2016. Predictably, it went viral. Several news media outlets covered the event in brief, often copied, articles. One of the witnesses, Vadim Gilmanov, postulated that it may be a hoax; however, who would go to the trouble?

Many people go to the trouble of filming hoax videos. Their intentions vary. In this case, the sighting occurred in the Ural Mountain region in the Republic of Bashkortostan, an area notorious for Bigfoot sightings but short on actual evidence. The two men are speaking Russian. None of the videos translated the conversation. A few articles claimed that the men were talking about Yetis. The Travel Channel episode claims the men say “Moose.” I heard both; however, I don’t speak Russian.

Travel Channel should have spent more time perusing the various articles to see what the public’s consensus was about this event. Had they, they would have found that no one could conclusively proclaim this as a Bigfoot sighting. In fact, quite a few people leaned toward hoax.

Here are my observations: The road was not isolated. There are at least one additional sets on tracks before the creature crossed. The bipedal creature maneuvered the terrain quite well. He seemed to glide, or possible ski, across the road. The film footage does not capture close-up images of the tracks, even though the car slowed down, crossed, and then re-crossed them. The men don’t seem excited about the sighting. A translation or transcript would bolster the claim. And finally, the video footage stops too soon. In an area ripe with Bigfoot sightings yet no evidence, surely these two men would have filmed the tracks. I’m not asking that they get out of the vehicle and give chase. Just, film the tracks. Take the time to look down. Had they, we may not be analyzing a paranormal show’s presumption that we’re all suckers.

Verdict: Unsubstantiated.

Travel Channel should have down this much analysis…at the very least.