‘The Back 80’ Documentary Explores Ohio Bigfoot Sightings

In the same-vein as documentaries Minerva Monster and Beast of Whitehall, The Back 80 explores the compelling, unnerving encounters of one Ohio woman and a strange correlation of sightings in her county. The Back 80 is available to order now.

What is ‘The Back 80’ About?

“During the summer of 2013, a woman’s world is turned upside down after seeing a creature cross the road in front of her one afternoon. She soon realizes that she is not alone on her own property and struggles to separate the truth from her own obsession. After some digging, she finds others in town who have similar stories to tell. Her quest for answers takes her to the only place these creatures could live…the abandoned, gated woods of the back eighty.”

— via their Facebook page.

So, I’m from the area actually. There’s populated farmland just about everywhere in that specific region. It appears the term ‘back 80’ alludes to the only likely spread of land where these creatures could conceivably live. From a piece in the Northeast Ohio-based News Herald:

“The title refers to an 80-acre area landlocked by other property that is rarely visited except for hunters a couple times a year and for road maintenance crews. This is the location where Suzanne (Ferencak) believes that the Bigfoot, if around, would be staying.”

Suzanne Ferencak is a focus of the project. She reported an eerie encounter near her home in May of 2015, where a large, stringy-haired figure with “superman arms” jumped across township road 211, practically in mid-air. A few weeks later she experienced a screaming howl on her property and believed one of these phantoms even prowled up to her front porch. This terrifying experience kept her inside for two days straight.

You can read the full, very detailed report here.

Suzanne’s story parallels several other reports in the area around the same time period: an important correlation that highly influenced Alan and Jesse to create this film.

Does Loudonville Ohio Have Many Sightings?

Ohio, for whatever reason you choose to subscribe to, is a Bigfoot hotspot. It ranks in the top 5 of overall sightings regularly ever year.

The Back 80 was inspired by a recent string of sightings in and around Loudonville, Ohio. Loudonville is a small town of approximately 3,000 people. Located in both Ashland and Holmes counties, the village is roughly 1.5 hours south of Cleveland and 1.5 hours north of Columbus. Mohican State Park is the main attraction of the area, offering miles of canoeing on the Mohican River and extensive hiking trails. The alleged Sasquatch sightings took place between 2006 and 2015 around the region.

The BFRO lists five Ashland County and five Holmes County Bigfoot encounters.

In Ashland County there have been two registered encounters since 2000.

In Holmes County there have been four registered encounters since 2000. Two of these are designated ‘Class A’ encounters, where the potential for misrepresentation of another animal or person is very low.

Who Created ‘The Back 80?’

A Twisted Tree Productions film, The Back 80 is the first-time directorial outing by two lifelong friends. Alan Megargle and Jesse Morgan were childhood besties and remained close throughout their whole lives. Jesse works full time for the federal government aiding military veterans, himself a Navy and National Guard veteran. Alan is a process engineer for a fortune 500 electronics manufacturer. He’s also a certified night hike instructor: a gig that no doubt intensified his interest in Sasquatch.

Since their fond youth the men shared a deep appreciation for the possible existence of Sasquatch. These cryptid hounds even formed a paranormal/Bigfoot research team called Fathom Frontiers and joined the BFRO as investigators in 2015. They regularly lead Sasquatch-themed campouts in Salt Fork State Park, Cambridge, Ohio.

Even though Alan and Jesse loved investigating the mysterious corners of our dimension, they wanted to blend another passion into the mix: filmmaking.

They helped produce the Seth Breedlove directed documentary Minerva Monster, another tale highlighting the eerie, dark side of Ohio (Breedlove and his Smalltown Monsters crew also filmed Beast of Whitehall and Boggy Creek Monster).

Order The Back 80 now!!

The Back 80 Bigfoot Documentary

Friendly filmmakers Jesse Morgan (left) and Alan Megargle (right)


  1. Andy Fulton

    It was a privilege meeting you Suzanne. I love talking with you on Facebook too!

  2. Suzanne Ferencak

    Except for some date corrections, you nailed it! Thanks for checking out The Back 80.

    Sighting was May 14, 2013
    How was Memorial Day 2013
    Porch encounter was fall of 2014
    Mark Maisel meant to say 2012, not 2006.

    Thank you all.
    I had a lot of top notch help figuring this all out.
    My gratitude is with my hero husband of 25 years Bernie, my BFRo investigator, now close friend Mark Maisel, (my bigfoot confessor), and others of note in my core krewe. They kept me sane when I wasn’t sure what was going on, or what I was dealing with.

    Bernie and I knew Alan and Jesse for a couple of years when they approached us with this project. I trusted them and said, what do you want to know about it? How much do you want to know about this storm on our heads. I’ll tell you.

    My hope is that, more people feel comfortable coming forward if they have had similar experiences. It can be frightening, and facinating.

    As long as they know that they are not alone, although it feels that way, there are others that have encountered this creature/being. It’s ok. We’ll live.

    And wonder.

    Alan and Jesse and Geoff did a great job capturing what that time was like for me, and Bernie.


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