Sasquatch Draws Curious Crowds at World Taxidermy Championships
A taxidermy replica of Bigfoot by artist Ken Walker has been drawing curious crowds this week at the World Taxidermy and Fish Carving Championships in Springfield, Missouri.
Crowds have been gathering for a curious sight this week at the World Taxidermy and Fish Carving Competition in Springfield, Missouri. Standing over six feet tall and covered in thick fur, the lifelike replica of Sasquatch was created by taxidermist Ken Walker. Walker is a veteran champion of the competition’s Re-Creations category, which is for mounts created using parts that are not from the species being portrayed.
For his female sasquatch, Walker carved the body from hard foam, and then used the hide of a Scottish Highland cow for the skin and fur.
- Related: Melissa Milgrome details Walker’s recreation of an extinct, prehistoric Irish Elk in her 2011 book Still Life: Adventures in Taxidermy.
Taxidermy Bigfoot by Ken Walker. Photo courtesy of Katie Innamorato.
So why did a master taxidermist decide to craft such a controversial creature? In his article, journalist Wes Johnson writes:
A native of Canada, Walker said he saw something strange run across the road deep in the Alberta wilderness some 30 years ago and became fascinated with the legendary beast.
“It was on two legs during the bear season in the middle of nowhere — there were no cars, there were no people around,” he said. “I assumed whatever it was was a person. But they were like 400 yards away and running scared. It cleared a big ditch in one leap. I found it very odd because it ran up a hill without even slowing down. Even bears don’t do that.
“The guy with me said, ‘Was that a Sasquatch?’ And I said, ‘No, there’s no such thing.’ Back then you couldn’t convince me.”
Since then, however, Walker has heard enough stories to become a believer.
After many requests from fans of his work, the Smithsonian taxidermist set out to make a Bigfoot as realistic as he could, using his own experience, as well as the 1967 Patterson film as reference. The mount is the subject of an upcoming documentary called Big Fur. Apparently the cameras have been following him around the competition all week.
Big Fur Documentary
To catch a glimpse of Bigfoot yourself, the competition will be open to the public Friday and Saturday at the Springfield Expo Center. More info here.
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