Assessment 1 of 0

8th Grade Assessment – Unit 2 – RI.8.2, RI.8.4, RI.8.5, RI.8.8, L.8.4a

Justice February 11, 2015

Read this article. Then answer questions 1 through 7.


A Bigfoot by Any Other Name…

by Kelly Milner Halls, Rick Spears, and Roxyanne Young


Bigfoot. Sasquatch. Yeti. Yeren. Yowie. The names and the details may differ from place to place,

but from North America to China to New Zealand, one thing is certain: Something is out there.

Chocolate brown or white as snow, these hair-covered, upright- standing creatures have been talked

about for more than six hundred years. And whether

5       we read about the ancient legends or the modern-day sightings, the stories make us wonder.

Bigfoot = Sasquatch


Bigfoot is a creature of many names. According to naturalist Dr. Robert Michael Pyle, Native American

legends call it by several exotic names, including Sasquatch, Sokqueatl,

or Sesquac (from a language spoken by several tribes of

Pacific Northwestern Native

10      Americans). No matter how it’s pronounced, the name means “wild man.”

That certainly describes the creature Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin claimed they saw wandering

along the rural Northern California timberline in October 1967. The creature was enormous—

at least seven feet tall—and walked upright like a man. But it wasn’t a man. In fact, it was

like nothing the outdoorsmen had seen before.

15             Patterson carefully reached into his saddlebag and pulled out his 16-millimeter

movie camera to capture the moment on film. And for decades, Bigfoot believers have been

thankful he did.

Was Sasquatch the last thing Patterson expected to see along Bluff Creek as he let his horse

rest and sip cool water? Not necessarily. He and Gimlin were known

20      Bigfoot/Sasquatch hunters and longed to prove the legends were true. The film they shot

became one of the most famous pieces of footage in Bigfoot history.

Even the experts can’t agree on the film’s authenticity. Some say it’s an elaborate hoax,

a fake Bigfoot, a prank. But others see the film as proof-positive that the elusive primate is

more than a North American myth.


Keeping Track

Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum, Idaho State University Professor of Anatomy, Primatology, and Paleontology

25             Raised in the heart of Bigfoot country—the Pacific Northwest—

Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum grew up in the shadow of the legend. So it’s not surprising that he’d have an interest in the

hair-covered beast. What makes him different from most Bigfoot-enthusiasts is the careful

and scientific approach he’s taken to analyze dozens of Sasquatch tracks.

About Dr. Meldrum’s research, professor and Cambridge University Press

30      author/editor Walter Hartwig says, “[Meldrum] has executed the model approach.

He’s weeded out what he believes might be hoaxes or misidentifications. . . .

It’s beautiful and well-controlled, inductive science. You may think it’s far-out, but

methodologically speaking, he has toed the line very strictly.”

His conclusion? There is sound, scientific reason to believe North America has its   own

35      giant ape. But, as he admits in the Denver Post, convincing the world and his

professional peers hasn’t been easy. Meldrum says, “If someone takes the time to visit the lab,

they are almost uniformly overwhelmed by the amount of data. Usually they have no

concept of the amount of evidence that’s been collected.”


Body of Evidence: The Skookum Cast

Using apples and melons as bait, members of the Bigfoot Field Researchers

40      Organization claim to have captured the first partial body cast of a Washington

State Sasquatch. Positioned at the center of a mud puddle in the Skookum Meadows of

Gifford Pinchot National Forest, not far from Mount Saint Helens, the tasty snack allegedly

convinced a full-grown creature to lie at the puddle’s edge and feast. Deep impressions of a

hair-covered hip, elbow, heel, wrist, and even buttocks were left in the mud. Mere hours

45      after the mystery creature left the scene, the team captured the impressions in a plaster cast.

Idaho professor Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum, the late Dr. Grover Krantz (a physical anthropologist

from the Washington State University), and journalist John Green carefully studied

the plaster cast to try to determine what kind of animal actually

visited the scene.

50      In a press release circulated by the Idaho State University, the men stated that

the impressions could not have been made by any “known” animals living in the region

and that an unknown primate was the most likely candidate.

Others have said an elk kneeling to gobble the fruit made the impressions in the mud,

not a mysterious cryptid. Dr. Meldrum disagrees.

55             “While not definitively proving the existence of a species of North American ape,”

Dr. Meldrum said in the release, “the cast constitutes significant and

compelling new evidence that will hopefully stimulate further serious

research and investigation.”


Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 12.07.50 PM

More than 200 pounds of plaster was used to make

60      the Skookum Cast,

which is 3½ feet wide

and 5 feet tall. Measurements

of the imprints indicated that

whatever creature made

65      this impression

was 40 to 50 percent

larger than a 6-foot-tall

human being.

When the cast was cleaned, hair samples were

70      extracted. All of them turned out to belong to deer, elk, coyote, and bear—all but one. One

hair had unique primate (ape) characteristics. Dr. Henner Fahrenback, a biomedical

research scientist from Beaverton, Oregon, has labeled it “Sasquatch.”


8th Grade Math – Post-test Assessment 2