Tag Archives: working in New Town North Dakota

I Get To Work Where The Bigfoots Are In North Dakota

For approximately fifteen years I have been reading the Bigfoot Field Research Organization Website, BFRO for short.  The BFRO maintains a data base of sightings, searchable by county and state.  The BFRO will accept witness reports, interview the witnesses, gather additional details, and visit the location if possible.  If the report appears to be legitimate, the report gets added to their data base.

To take just a minute to explain some things to people who do not know much about Bigfoot.  Ever since the settling of North America, there have been Bigfoot sightings.  Yes, Bigfoots have been captured, both dead and alive.  There are hundreds of newspaper reports of Bigfoots being seen and being shot back in the 1800s and early 1900s.  Someone had collected about one hundred of these old newspaper articles on their website titled “Lawn flowers, Jerky, and Bigfoot.”  Myself, and many others read these newspaper articles, but this site is only referenced now, it appears to be gone now.

The person who created the website “Lawn flowers, Jerky, and Bigfoot”, that contained about one hundred articles from old newspapers, appeared to be a biologist or naturalist, probably employed by a state agency.  All the State and Federal employees, such as naturalists, biologists, environmentalists, geologists, park rangers, fish & game, Bureau of Land Management, etcetera, are all told to not talk about the Bigfoot subject.  It may be wisdom, or it may be something else, that made the U.S. Government decide a long time ago, that they were going to deny, cover up, and not acknowledge the existence of Bigfoot.

There have not been many Bigfoot sightings reported in North Dakota, compared to states like California, Oregon, and Washington state.  This seems understandable, since North Dakota is not heavily forested, North Dakota is comprised mostly of grassland and badlands.  However, there have been a great deal of Bigfoot sightings on the Fort Berthold Native American Reservation.

I knew a little about Native American history, culture, values, and life from reading, and from meeting and working with Native Americans.  For the sake of simplicity, you can start out by realizing that Native Americans were taken advantage of, and that to this day they have some mistrust, resentment, and hostility when dealing with non-Native Americans.

During the past four weeks I have had to work in the oil field on the Native American Reservation of Fort Berthold.  In the late 1940s, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was conducting a study on where to dam the Missouri River in North Dakota, to create a reservoir.  The area that was decided upon, was the Native American Reservation at Fort Berthold.  Can you imagine that?  The Native Americans in the Dakotas had been forced off the plains and grasslands onto a reservation in the late 1800s, not something they wanted to happen in the first place, and now, less than 100 years later, the U.S. Government is going to flood their villages.  Eight villages were flooded, and a new town was created above the reservoir Lake Sakakawea, called New Town.

In the summer, Lake Sakakawea is beautiful.  The dark blue water of the lake washes right up onto the various colors of green grassland and farm fields.  The land is Native American owned, sparsely occupied, and hardly developed at all.  In many areas, there are several thousand acres per single family home.  There are very few roads, most of them are not paved, and not marked with signs.

Remember, this is a Native American Reservation, and I am only allowed to travel on the reservation because I am working on the oil wells.  Each oil field vehicle has a large sticker on the door, called a “Taro Card”, that is issued by the reservation at a fee of $2,500 per sticker.   The Native American police patrol all the roads, and if you do not have a big “Taro Card” sticker on your door, and you are not a member of the tribe, the fine is $1,000.

For those of you living outside of North Dakota, try to realize that the population of the entire state is less than 1 million people.  Western North Dakota is very sparsely populated.  The Fort Berthold Reservation is even more unpopulated and undeveloped.  Many times each day when I am working, I can see for five miles in every direction, and there are no people.  About every other location that I am working on, a tanker truck will arrive to load oil.  If it weren’t for the oil field traffic, there would not be any vehicles.

This past week, I got my co-worker/supervisor to look up on the internet the Bigfoot sightings for Fort Berthold.  My co-worker/supervisor has been working in this area for about five years, and he knows the area very well.  He was surprised to see that many of the sighting reports were right where we were working.

During my second week of working on the reservation, my co-worker/supervisor was trying to give me a warning to never, ever work until dark on a location, to make sure to get back to town before dark.  He said that he had been way out at a location, not far from where we had been earlier, and an oil field tanker truck driver had started a conversation with him, delaying him in the work that he was doing.  The tanker truck driver left, and he was alone at the site.  He needed to complete the work, and not have to come back in the morning.

He said that he began to feel that he was being watched, like someone was watching him.  The hair on the back of his neck was standing up, and he tried to work, but he couldn’t.  He had to leave without completing the work.  He talked to some of the other workers the following day, and they said that other workers said the same thing about that location.  He will not go to that location when it is getting close to dark.

The Fort Berthold Reservation is sparsely populated and undeveloped.  Everywhere, it seems like there is a heavily treed ravine with a creek bed.  The criss crossing and ever present heavily treed ravines make it possible for Bigfoots to stay concealed during the day, with water and things to eat.  At night, they can travel across the fields and hills without much risk of being seen, there are so few people.

The Native Americans in their culture and heritage do not feel the need to deny the existence of Bigfoot, any more than they would try to deny the existence of a wolf or buffalo.  The Native Americans, although they may be astonished at the sight of a Bigfoot, and afraid, they don’t feel that something must be done about it, they just continue on doing what they normally do.

Strange Coincidence In New Town, North Dakota

In a recent previous blog post, I explained that I started a new job last week in Dickinson, North Dakota.  The company that I work for, asked me to drive two hours to the north, to work in the oil field in New Town.  Monday night, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday night, I stay at the Native American casino in New Town, called Four Bears.

New Town is a Native American town on Lake Sakakawea.  There are no fast food restaurants in New Town, like McDonald’s, Wendy’s, or Taco Bell.  There aren’t hardly any restaurants or stores.  Everything closes at night, including the gas stations.

On my second day in New Town, when I got off work, I went to every gas station, truck stop, and store that I could see, to try to find a clip board.  At about 5:30 p.m., I was at the largest store in New Town, called Shop Ko, looking for a clip board, and looking at other things.  When I got to the check out line with some bottles of Powerade, there stood a strange tall fellow from Wyoming who is a friend of mine, named Seth.

I had felt like I was at the end of the earth, in the middle of no where, and here is my friend Seth, about 700 miles from his home in Wyoming.  I was surprised to see him, but not really.  He appeared to be thinking the same thing.

I first met Seth in Dickinson, North Dakota in May of 2011, at the Tiger Truck Stop. I had a truck bed camper on the back of my truck, and I slept in the truck stop parking lot or the WalMart parking lot for a couple of days until I went to work for a company that let me stay on their property.  Seth had a 1986 Mercury Grand Marquis that he paid $100 for, and he slept in the back seat, in various locations around Dickinson.

For those of you who don’t know, or don’t remember, during the oil boom in Dickinson, Watford City, and Williston, an old small one bedroom apartment rented for $1,500 per month, if you could even find one available.  It was not unusual at that time, for people to sleep in their vehicles, campers, or tractor trucks.

I was not too worried at that time back in 2011, sleeping in a truck bed camper, because I owned a home back in Idaho, and I had enough money to not have to work for nine months.  I looked at being in Dickinson, as an adventure.  The oil boom, was kind of like being in the middle of a gold rush in the old west.  People were arriving every day in Dickinson, with no money, and expecting to get rich.

On some days, five dollars was all the money in the world that Seth had.  He didn’t let this get him down, or worry him.  This didn’t worry him, partly because he had lived his whole life with frequent periods of having very little money.

Seth grew up in a rural area in Wyoming.  In his whole life, he attended school for maybe a total of three years.  His parents were supposed to be home schooling him, but mostly they were trying to diminish him, to prevent him from becoming a normal adult, so that he would never be able to leave them and go out on his own.

Due to his parents trying to keep him down and sabotage everything Seth did, he became almost completely independent from them, by the time he was eight or ten years old.  He lived in tents, old trailers, and old shacks, with no water, and no electricity, away from his parents.  He did odd jobs, outside of town for ranchers, and in town for people and for businesses.

Sympathetic ranchers, towns people, and business owners would help him and give him things.  His whole life, his clothes were either given to him, or he got them at a thrift store like Goodwill.  Seth is color blind, so it was common that Seth would be given, or would find, red pants, green pants, or purple pants, and he would wear them and think nothing of it, because he didn’t know.

I am describing all these things about Seth, to explain that he is different.  He did not go to school as a child.  He was not raised by parents, he was at war with his parents, who tried to prevent him from being normal, so that he would never be able to go out on his own.  Living on his own as a child, without running water and electricity, having to scavenge for food and clothes, only ever having donated clothes, makes him appear and act differently than other people, now that he is an adult.

In the summer of 2011, on the weekends Seth and I would go camping, cooking out, and shooting in various places in North Dakota.  On some weekends we would drive to a gun show in Wyoming or Montana.  During the week after work, without planning it, we would end up eating at Bonanza at the same time, or end up at the same location that had internet access.

I was good friends with Seth for several years, but I almost got into trouble many times or I almost had an accident many times while doing things with Seth.  For instance, at a gun show in Montana, the police were called because “He was buying too many guns.”, and there was almost a police officer punched.  Another time, Seth was shooting an M1A rifle next to me, and it blew up.  Because Seth is color blind, he grabbed the wrong re-load powder, and accidentally re-loaded a bunch of cartridges with it, which after about twenty shots, blew the bolt back out of the receiver, broke the receiver, and blew apart the magazine, sending shrapnel in different directions.

I have many more “for instances” about almost getting into trouble while going places or doing things with Seth.  It came to the point, that I didn’t want to have any more involvement with him, because I just did not want problems and trouble.

Seeing Seth in New Town and talking to him, I believed that he probably did not have a place to stay.  I was going to offer to let him stay in my hotel room at the Four Bears Casino that my new employer was paying for, even though it could jeopardize my employment.  The room charge was for just one occupant, and it might go up quite a bit if the casino saw that there were two occupants.

Seth said he had to turn off his vehicle, he left it running to keep the air conditioning on for the cat.  The driver’s side window was broken out, it was taped with plastic sheeting, and the vehicle was damaged all over.  There is no way that the casino security, which drives through the parking lot every five to ten minutes, would not notice Seth’s vehicle and try to find out who it belonged to.  I could see getting into trouble and conflict with the casino hotel over Seth’s vehicle, Seth’s cat, and an unusual strange person staying in the hotel who is not a registered guest.

I was glad to see Seth, but I just can’t have much involvement with him sometimes because I don’t want to have problems and trouble.

Four Bears Casino And New Town, North Dakota

I started a new job on Monday of this week.  I agreed to go work in the oil field in New Town, North Dakota, and stay at the Native American casino, called Four Bears.

In the mid 1940s the United States Government was trying to determine the best location to dam the Missouri River to create a reservoir.  The area that was decided upon, was an area where the Native American tribes the Hidasta and the Mandan, had approximately eight villages.  These Native American villages were to be flooded in approximately 1950 when the dam was completed.

The Native Americans were relocated to an entirely new town, called New Town.  The population of New Town stayed at approximately 1,700 people from 1950 up until the oil boom that began in 2007.  Then, the population doubled, and tripled.

I heard about it, and then I saw it for myself when I got here, the  Native Americans here do have some resentment towards white people.  You could say that they look upon the white people here, as a nuisance.

My experiences so far this week have been good and bad.  The reservoir, called Lake Sakakawea is very beautiful.  From a short distance away, it looks like the dark blue water washes right up onto green grass, green prairie, and green farm fields.

I had read on the internet many very bad reviews and complaints about the Four Bears Casino.  When I arrived at the casino, I agree with all the reviews that said it is very hard to find and identify the entrance to the hotel.  I had to drive around and around for at least five minutes looking for the hotel entrance, and the parking lot made no sense, it was no where near the entrance.

When I got to my room, it was quite nice.  It had been recently painted, the carpet was new, and all the furniture was nice and new.  The hotel has a buffet dining room, a cafe, and a formal dining restaurant.

I had had such a bad day on Monday, I fell asleep face down on top of the bed with my clothes and boots on, at 5:00 p.m.  When I got cleaned up and walked to the hotel buffet restaurant, it was closed, it closes at 9:00 p.m., and I was very angry.  I went back to my hotel room to study the oil field site maps, work forms, and other things until 11:00 p.m.  When I walked down to the café, it was closed, it closes at 11:00 p.m., and I was very angry.  What kind of a casino is this?

If you read my previous blog post about starting work for a new company, I was at work at 3:45 a.m. Monday morning.  I had a horrible day, and I had not had anything to eat all day.  Because there was no way to get anything to eat at the hotel casino, I went out and got in my truck and I had to drive across the bridge over Lake Sakakawea to get into New Town.  There was not one restaurant, store, or gas station open, nothing.  I wanted to pack my things and drive back to Dickinson, New Town sucked so bad.

I was looking forward to finally getting something to eat on Tuesday night.  I made sure to be at the hotel buffet by 7:00 p.m.  I asked how much for the buffet.  They said $23.  I couldn’t believe it.  I went ahead and paid it because there is almost no where else to eat in New Town.  All the food looked very good at the hotel buffet.  I am on a diet, so I ate a salad, some meat loaf, and some mashed potatoes, that was it.  It took me about eight minutes to eat.

On Wednesday night, I walked down to the hotel buffet and they wanted $30.  I told them to forget it.  I walked down to the hotel fine dining restaurant, and I looked at the menu.  All of the menu items were $50 to $70.  The appetizers were $23.  I told them to forget it.

I had to drive back across the bridge to the other side of town to eat at Teddy’s Hotel restaurant.  Man, the company that I work for has me staying at the Four Bears Casino, and I don’t know why.  I leave the hotel to go to work at 5:30 a.m., and when I get back from working in the oil field all day, and take a shower, I can’t even eat here!

Today, Thursday, I found out that the Four Bears hotel does not have any laundry facilities.  Then, I found out that the whole town of New Town does not have any laundry facilities.

When I worked in the oil field in southwest Texas in 2012, it was just like this.  I have been to every gas station and store in New Town, and I could not find one clip board anywhere.  I couldn’t find any nail clippers either.

If I would not have had a police radar detector, I would have gotten a speeding ticket every time I drove somewhere.  The speed limit constantly changes from 40 mph to 25 mph, back and forth, and I have no idea how fast I am supposed to be driving.  Every time I drive somewhere, the police have someone pulled over.

New Town is a very stressful and unpleasant town.  I am getting the impression that none of the oil field workers want to be here.  If you watch some of the movies about what it was like being in the military stationed in Iraq or Afghanistan, that is what it is like here in New Town.  The local people don’t want us here, and you can’t do normal things like you did back home.

There is no McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Arby’s, Taco Bell, Taco Johns, Subway, Dominoes, Kentucky Fried Chicken, or Pizza Hut.  You can’t buy things like a clip board or nail clippers.