Date:July 07, 2010
Placer county, CA
Nearest town: Colfax
Nearest road: Secret Town/Magra
Location: My front yard
Description of event: It was about 10 or 10:30 PM. It was a hot summer night, about 85 degrees after what been a 95+ degree day . (Hot for where we live at 3000' in the Sierras.) So we had the windows closed and the AC on. I'll point out now that this neighborhood sits on the very edge of the huge canyon system that is the North Fork of the American River. Very rugged, steep & heavily forested.
My neighbor always worries that Coyotes or Bear will get my Boston Terrier who likes to roam a little bit... Anyway, the dog, who is normally very quiet and not at all prone to barking, really starts in. I mean, the worst he has ever barked. He is glaring out the window and shaking. Odd thing is, he might normally run out his dog door and strait to the driveway - but he did not want to go out. Another odd thing - as a "bully" breed of Dog, he is rather fearless and I know that larger dogs have never intimidated him - he stands ground & is curious.
He also grew up chasing deer at our other house near Grass Valley, CA. With the camping & hikes I take him on, he has certainly seen & smelled all the normal Sierra Mountain woodland creatures. But he would just not go out - just stared out the window & shivered. I also looked out the window but it was dark and I did not see anything out of place. I finally said enough after 2-3 minutes of his ruckus and got up to take him out. When I opened the door, he did not bolt out into the driveway, but walked carefully out with me - again, unusual for him. It was then, standing on my porch that I realized, "Yea, it's a hot night, but why does it seem kind of funky smelling? - Like BO...? Not just humidity?"
After not seeing anything (dogs, deer, bear, coyote, etc) in my yard, and after noting the smell, I did notice the anomaly; my recycle bin with only plastic water bottles had somehow moved from it's normal spot by the garage door to a place about 14-16' feet away in front of my living room window. I then thought "Silly Bear - you could take the aluminum can bin and at least lick the sugar residue off the tops! What do you want with empty water bottles?" (There is a water canal in the area, about 80 yards away; water is NOT hard to find around here.) And "Why even move the bin? Just rummage through it where it is?" So, I told the dog to come inside with me and did not think much more about it... watched TV and went to bed. No more noise from the Dog.
Then, in the morning light, came the "WTF" moment. I knew the bin was there and needed to go back to it's normal spot, and as I was picking it up, it occurred to me that none of the bottles had spilled out (and it was about full) and most strange of all, there was no evidence of the thing being dragged across my gravel driveway... And the driveway is small crushed blue stone - loose and about 1-2 inches deep. Like a garden path - not like compacted road base. I rake it like a Japanese Garden. I stood up strait and looked carefully at the path from the garage - to where it had been moved - and there was nothing - and that startled me. Even the lightest dragging would have made a mark in this new loose gravel. The bin had clearly been picked up and moved.
I wish there was more to tell - but that's what happened. A recycle bin that is ALWAYS in the same place had been picked up, not dragged, and placed down about 15 or so feet away. Perhaps some idiot was trying to steal my recyclables, but that bin holds about $1.80 worth of bottles!
If it was a person - my dog would have simply gone out front to investigate with only mild alarm. If it was a Bear, I just don't see how no bottles would have spilled out, and how a bear could carry something.
I've seen bears - they knock stuff over, drag things, rummage through containers.... I guess my main points are this: 1) The dog really went nuts 2) The bin MUST have been carried - or else a drag mark would have been very, very clear.
Not saying it was for sure a bigfoot or a bear or an ass-raping grey alien who wanted my recyclables - just that I am an observant person - and these events were odd.
record updated:2010-07-20 18:22:26