We’re down to hours before departing at dawn for our Sasquatch Expedition… Our flight leaves at 6a for the Upper Peninsula of MI. Checking gear and packing it: Tent, check. Sleeping bag, check. Cameras, laptop, boots, batteries, Power Bars, etc… Check.

It feels like 120 degrees outside in the nation’s Capital, the Senate is all in tethers over the Iraq debate, and John McCain’s campaign is imploding with fleeing veteran staff members. Simply put – perfect time to get outta here for a few days.

News of our mission has reached local media according to the Upper Peninsula’s newspaper, The Mining Journal, who writes:

An expedition by the Bigfoot Field Research Organization is set to get underway Thursday in Marquette County. According to BFRO investigator Matthew Moneymaker, the project, which is planned to run through Sunday, is intended to collect evidence supporting the existence of the legendary creature known as “bigfoot” or “sasquatch.”

The exact locations where the 50 BFRO investigators will be working remains confidential, Moneymaker said. He said the group plans to limit media access during the search.

But we’re on the inside track. I have been included in the group’s messaging system and privy to the dismissal already of a potential “face shot” that did not qualify as legitimate.

I ask Andy, our cameraman, for his thoughts on the trip. “I’m not afraid of Bigfoot,” he says.

So far, nothing has led me to believe this mythical beast exists, but I must confess that I am already enjoying the journey – and it hasn’t even begun.

NOTE: Most of my missives and updates from the field will be from blackberry and any other means possible, so I ask for misspelling forgiveness in advance!