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"Crazy Critter" of Bald Mountain is an alleged insect-like creature confronted by several shocked motorists during the evening of 17 November 1974 on Bald Mountain.


The state of Washington in the United States has 15 peaks named Bald Mountain. The location where the sighting look place was situated reportedly 20 miles east of Chehalis, Washington. Located near Newaukum Lake, this was a particularly low peak with an elevation of 3,619 ft (1,103 m). Despite reports, the peak seems to be closer to around 40 miles east of Chehalis, based on its coordinates from the U.S. Geological Survey (46°43′50″N 122°27′11″W).


On November 14th, 1974, a “fiery object” in the sky was witnessed crashing to Earth near Bald Mountain in Lewis County, Washington. Within a week of this event, two parties in the area reported encountering a strange creature; horse-sized, with tentacles and an antenna and, most notably, giving off a strong green glow like “a neon sign in the fog.”

These reports soon reached the local paper and, eventually, the Lewis County Sheriff who said he began an investigation but was soon visited by heavily-armed men claiming to be from the US Air Force. They insisted on taking over the investigation from him, and whether they captured it or it managed to return whence it came, that was the last time anyone heard of the crazy critter.

Three nights earlier, and only about 5 miles away, a UFO of the unidentified fiery object kind plummeted to earth, but this had attracted little publicity - until Seattle grocer Ernest Smith saw the 'crazy critter'. 


According to Smith's description, cited in Jim Brandon's book Weird America (1978):

" was horse-sized, covered with scales and standing on four rubbery legs with suckers like octopus tentacles. Its head was football-shaped with an antenna sticking up...The thing gave off this green, iridescent light."

That glow was also spied by Mr and Mrs Roger Ramsbaugh from Tacoma. As they came closer to investigate, the two were confronted with the same weird wonder, complete with antenna and suckered legs that Smith had seen earlier. Such reports as these soon attracted the attention of the local authorities, headed by Lewis County Sheriff William Wister, but some accounts claim that he was instructed by Air Force and NASA officials not to continue his investigations, and his own team of county officials was replaced by what Brandon refers to as "a special NASA team, including a heavily armed military unit wearing uniforms with no insignia".

EDITOR NOTE: Sounds familiar? As for the crazy critter itself: this episode reminds me of a storyline greatly favored by newspaper cartoonists (and as also imagined by Malcolm Smith in Bunyips and Bigfoots, (1996), in which the captain of a flying saucer is angrily reprimanding one of his crew members: "You fool! You know darned well that you should always keep the ship's mascot on a leash when you take it for a walk!".

Government Investigation and the Men in Black[]

Main article: Men in Black

William H. Wiester

After reports of the creature hit the local papers, the Sheriff of Lewis County, one William H. Wiester — often misspelled as “Wister” — began an investigation into the sightings, but in a twist that will come as no shock to UFO enthusiasts his inquiry was allegedly halted by individuals claiming to represent both NASA and the United States Air Force.

These officials were alleged to have been “heavily armed” and clad in military uniforms that bore no insignia. That having been stated it is reasonable to assume that the unit presumably hailed from — and was likely headquartered at — nearby McChord Air Force Base. Needless to say, as soon as this special investigative team swooped in all information regarding the Crazy Critter seems to have dried up.

In Popular Culture[]

  • The Crazy Critter of Bald Mountain is featured in popular trading card game MetaZoo: Cryptid Nation.
Crazy Critter of Bald Mountain

The Crazy Critter of Bald Mountain as depicted in MetaZoo: Cryptid Nation

External Links[]