This is a great adventure to plan on a family camping trip where there will be a lot of woods. It will add some extra fun to your overall camping experience. It can also be planned for a local park…making sure that the park is very woodsy.
Synopsis: Your kids will begin at one location and then begin tracking Bigfoot, one clue at a time. They will finally end up at a location where they will SPOT Bigfoot and using their handy “Nerf Tranquilizer Gun” will get to each take ONE shot to try and knock him out.
Back Story: There has been a recent sighting of the legendary Bigfoot. A local reporter is hoping to discover the validity of the claims. She’s willing to share the specific details of where Bigfoot was spotted if your family will pick up the trail and try to capture (without hurting) him.
Setting It Up:
1: Beforehand you’ll need to purchase one small piece of cheap brown fur from your local craft store (the longer the fur, the better.) This will need to be cut into small pieces (approximately 1-2 inch square pieces.) Do what you can to keep the fur as long as you can when you cut the pieces. Additionally, you’ll need to create a footprint mold. For this, begin with some thick foam core at your local craft store. Draw and cut out a large foot print (around 14 inches long). Finally, you’ll need a small red ribbon (or some other marker that you can tie to a tree or bush.)
- You’ll also need a ‘Bigfoot.’ For best results, it’s best to secure a volunteer who wouldn’t mind hanging out at a designated spot (described later) wearing a brown coat/sweater or wrapped in a brown blanket. If you won’t have a volunteer, you can also purchase some brown packaging paper from your office supply store and draw a crude outline of Bigfoot to hang from a tree.
- You will also need to make sure that you have access to a ‘playing area’ that is woodsy WITHOUT any trails. They won’t be able to truly track Bigfoot if they are led right to him by the trail.
- Once you have your supplies and are ready to set up the adventure (assuming you’ve either found an appropriate park or are in the middle of your camping trip) take your Bigfoot (volunteer or paper drawing) and find a secure place to begin the adventure. Now walk approximately 10-15 feet from that first beginning spot and place a ‘tracking clue.’ A tracking clue can be one of two different things – either attaching one of the fur pieces that you cut out to a tree branch or bush OR by pressing your footprint mold into the dirt to create a footprint on the ground. If the ground isn’t quite soft enough to create a footprint, dig up the ground a little first (loosening the soil) THEN press the footprint mold in to get a clean footprint.
- Next, choose another spot that’s 10-15 feet away from the tracking clue you just placed to place another tracking clue (another piece of fur or footprint.) Continue in this fashion, placing fur and footprints in random directions that lead away from that starting location. It’s up to you to choose how many of the tracking clues you’d like to place…the more you place, the longer the activity will take. Because you are wanting to simulate the path that Bigfoot was walking, try not to make the line of clues too erratic (while not making them a super straight line either or it would be too easy.)
- At the LAST tracking clue, place your red ribbon (or some other marker.) Your hunters will then need to STOP at that location. They are as close to Bigfoot as they are allowed to get for the adventure. Within 15-20 feet of that marker, place your Bigfoot (either your volunteer sitting on a log or your large paper drawing hanging from a tree, etc.) Instruct your hunters that they each get ONE shot at Bigfoot with their Nerf Tranquilizer Gun from that final location. They must also be quiet lest they scare off the creature.
When it’s time to launch the adventure, gather your ‘hunters’ at the starting position. Explain that they will need to TRACK Bigfoot and once he’s found, they’ll each get to squeeze off ONE round from a nerf gun to try and tranquilize him. They must first find a tracking clue (a foot print or a piece of fur) that’s 10-15 feet from their starting position. Once they find the clue, they must find the next one…each clue leading them into the woods. Make sure to tell them that once they find the red ribbon, they are close to Bigfoot and must be quiet. Bonus points are awarded for being SUPER stealthy!