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Australia’s Mysterious Legends of Hairy Hominids Called Yowies
In 1804, John Pinkerton's publication, "Modern Geography – a Description of the Empires, Kingdoms, States and Colonies: with the Oceans, Seas and Isles: In all Parts of the World," made a notable reference. It spoke of indigenous Australians living near Sydney Harbor, who were distinguished by unique physical characteristics. These native Australians identified them as distinct beings, dubbing them Yahoos or Yowies, which translates to “furry beings.”
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Australia's Two Yowie Varieties
The Kuku Yalanji Tribe from North Queensland maintains the belief in the Yowie's existence, recounting tales of interactions and confrontations over generations. Their description of the Yowie mirrors the Sasquatch legends of Native American tribes in the North-western U.S.
Historical narratives distinguish two Yowie variants in Australia. The dominant kind, Gigantopithecus, is a formidable being, with heights ranging from 6 to 10 feet and weighing nearly half a ton. This creature, veiled in mystery, appears as an enormous, fur-clad humanoid with claw-like fingers. While it exhibits simian facial characteristics, its demeanor is perceived as notably more volatile towards humans. A secondary, smaller version of the Yowie exists, standing around 4-5 feet tall. Although skepticism surrounds these tales, some argue that these beings represent ancient hominids that somehow survived through time. Indigenous rock paintings support this, depicting tall, furry beings alongside shorter indigenous figures.
Encounters with the Enigma: Yowie's Historical Traces
The initial European-Yowie interaction purportedly began following the First Fleet's landing in Sydney in 1788. Early settlers frequently received cautionary tales from indigenous people about simian creatures inhabiting Australia's treacherous terrains. A notable 1820 letter dispatched to London narrated a 1789 event, where hunters reportedly spotted a gargantuan creature observing them, significantly taller than an average man.
Australia's south witnessed its inaugural Yowie encounter in 1849 on Philip Island, Victoria. Witnesses described a tall being, appearing as a man-baboon hybrid, stationed by a lakeside. Later in 1936, a curious image emerged, captured by Rich Jones in Batlow, NSW. It allegedly showcased a massive creature seated behind two loggers. Another peculiar report from 1979 involved a couple discovering a disfigured kangaroo carcass, attributing its state to a nearby towering, hairy entity.
Australia has had its share of skepticism concerning its unique fauna. For instance, the initial European discovery of the Platypus was met with disbelief. This odd mammal, showcasing a mix of various animal traits, was only accepted as real after the arrival of multiple specimens.
Contemporary Glimpses of the Yowie
Presently, Yowie sightings predominantly emerge from New South Wales' southern and central Coastal regions and the Gold Coast in Queensland, particularly around the Blue Mountains. Rex Gilroy, a Yowie aficionado, has probed into over 3,000 alleged encounters, positing a connection between the Yowie and North America's Bigfoot. Despite the plethora of claimed sightings, a segment of researchers remains skeptical about the Yowie's existence. An extensive 2006 book, "The Yowie: In Search of Australia's Bigfoot" by Tony Healy and Paul Cropper, encapsulates the available knowledge while acknowledging the scant evidence backing the Yowie's existence.
Recently, there have been fresh claims of Yowie sightings. A hiker reportedly encountered a seven-foot Yowie in 2016, a 2017 YouTube video might have captured the Ipswich Yowie, and a recent report speaks of a creature seen near a deceased kangaroo on the Carnarvon Highway.
Global Tales of Hairy Hominids: The Bigfoot/Yowie Nexus
Stories of large, hairy humanoids are universally ingrained in global folklore. From the Himalayan “Yeti” and China's “Chi- Chi” to Mongolia's “Almas” and the “Forest men" of Vietnam, such tales span continents. Australia joins the roster as one of the lesser-acknowledged regions reporting Bigfoot-like creature encounters.
While the existence of the Yowie remains debated, the cultural significance of these stories cannot be dismissed. Indigenous tribes have passed down tales of these beings for generations, and these narratives often intertwine with their understanding of the land, nature, and the delicate balance that exists between man and myth.
Top Image: Simulated Cave Painting of Ancient Bipedal Humanoid Ancestor or Relative. Source: Visionarily / Adobe Stock.
By Bryan Hill
Haran, Brady. "'First Platypus' Still Intact." BBC News. May 16, 2005. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4547151.stm
Campbell, Ian. "Batemans Bay Yowie Sighting an Australian First." ABC South East NSW. December 9, 2014. http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2014/12/09/4145054.htm
"The Yowie In Search of Australia's Bigfoot." The Yowie In Search of Australia's Bigfoot. http://www.yowiefile.com/The_Yowie_File/Home.html
Gilroy, Rex. "A Short History of Early “Hairy Man” Reports." Australian Yowie Research Centre. http://www.australianyowieresearchcentre.com/yowie-short-history-early-reports.html
"Yowie - Yowie, Australia's Sasquatch." Occultopedia, the Occult and Unexplained Encyclopedia. http://www.occultopedia.com/y/yowie.htm
"Yowie." Yowie. http://self.gutenberg.org/articles/yowie
"Australia's Bigfoot the Yowie in 1936 Photograph." YouTube. February 3, 2014.