Tales of a hairy monster living in the high Himalayan region can be found in the writings of various Chinese scholars. This creature has often been linked to the genesis of Asian civilisation. Though some Europeans had also witnessed this Ape like creature but it did not receive much publicity before the fall of twentieth century. In 1906 H.J. Elwes reported to have noticed a hairy figure racing across a field of snow while he was on an expedition to the Himalayas. Most scientific establishments refuted this fact. But some scientists had to validate the fact when they found the journals of Major Lawrence Waddell who had reported some humanlike tracks on snow in 1887. In 1921 a company of British soldiers witnessed dark shapes moving about in the snow on the expedition to scale the Mount Everest. The explorers also found several human-like footprints.
The sherpas in the vicinity called these creates as “Metoh Kangmi” or “Abdominable Snowman”. The creature was later known as Yeti. It has been described as being five to six feet tall having reddish hair, a conical, long hanging arms and a human like face. In 1925 a Greek photographer named N.A. Tombazi on expedition to the Himalayas was pointed at a figure at a fair distance by a Sherpa guide. Tombazi later revealed that the creature stood upright similar to a human and was pulling some bushes. Yeti disappeared before Tombazi had chance to take a snap. But the photographer headed to the place and found footprints that were very human-like. In the following years there were many reports of odd human footprints in snow.
In 1930’s studies started using explorer Frank Smythe’s discovery of Yeti footprints on snow. These footprints were found at 14,000 feet and measured about 13 inches long and five inches wide. Another famous mountaineer also reported about the Yeti sighting. During the World War II all sightings and explorations stopped in the Himalayan region. But in 1942 four men who had escaped from Communist Prison in Siberia and walked all the way to India reported they had met two Yetis.
After 195o there were many expeditions to Himalays renewing interesting in the Yeti. In 1953 celebrated mountaineers Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay reported to have seen giant footprints on their expedition to the summit. Norgay also revealed later that his father had died shortly after seeing a Yeti. But Hillary went on to lead another expedition to find evidence for existence of Yeti. But he found nothing of this sort. Hillary concluded that Yeti was part of fairy tale which had no real existence. But most experts feel that Hillary had jumped onto a conclusion very soon, because he had also not seen the snow leopard but that definitely exists.
Though most of the interest in Yeti was killed off by Hillary’s conclusion but it soon re-ignited. There was a report where a Sherpa girl and her yaks were attacked by a creature. In the incident three animals were killed. In August 1981 a group of Soviet mountaineers led by Igor Tatsl claimed to have not only met but had a friendly time with the Yeti. He even felt that these were the closest evolutionary stage of human beings, they had sharper sense than normal human beings.
In the 1990’s and 2000’s there were various other sightings. But no conclusive proof except some footprints and blur pictures exist. But how could so many people lie. We should wait and see when the concrete evidence for the existence of this mysterious creature can be found.