The Cryptid Zoo: Almas

Described as looking like humans, but with fur covering most of the body, the almas (or almasti) is a variety of wildman or Bigfoot that is reported from the Altai Mountains in Mongolia and the Tien Shan Mountains in China (near the border with Mongolia). Sometimes, researchers consider the almas to have a much wider range, and the term is applied to any Bigfoot-like creature reported from Mongolia or regions of the former Soviet Union. For example, the abnauayu of the Caucasus Mountains is sometimes considered identical to the almas. Also called the bnahua and the ochokochi, this ape-man is reported from the regions near Armenia, a long way from the border of China and Mongolia.

The body hair of almas is often described as curly, the jaws are large, and the eyebrow ridges are heavy. Visible areas of skin on the face, hands and feet are usually dark. The body hair is usually described as red or reddish-brown, sometimes as black. Most reports indicate an adult height of about five feet, but some describe a creature as tall as six and a half feet.

Available evidence seems to indicate that the almas near the border of Mongolia and China, if they exist, have been split into two populations which are rapidly dying out. Some researchers in the field of cryptozoology consider almas to be neanderthals. Almas are also called almasti in some reports.

You can find out more about Almas from the following sources:

Brookesmith, Peter, ed. Creatures from Elsewhere. London, Chartwell Books, 1989. Pages 10-12

Clark, Jerome and Coleman, Loren. Cryptozoology A-Z. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1999. Pages 26-28
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Clark, Jerome. Unexplained!. Detroit: Visible Ink Press, 1999. Pages 212-214

Cremo, Michael A. & Thompson, Richard L. Living Ape-Men: The Almas of Central Asia

Innes, Brian. Giant Humanlike Beasts

Newton, Michael. Encyclopedia of Cryptozoology: A Global Guide to Hidden Animals and Their Pursuers. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, 2005. Pages 11, 13, 19, 40, 102, 128, 151, 153, 177, 186, 188, 198, 225-226, 228, 233, 237, 298-299, 310, 325, 364, 373, 378, 404, 438, 445, 466-467, 475, 489, 497, 506-507

Weidensaul, Scott. The Ghost with Trembling Wings: Science, Wishful Thinking and the Search for Lost Species. New York: North Point Press, 2002. Page 173

Wikipedia, The. Almas

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