A weta workshops yeti is prepared for filming a te 8002412934
The Yeti or Abominable Snowman is an ape-like cryptid said to inhabit the Himalayan region of Nepal, and Tibet.[1][2] The names Yeti and Meh-Teh are commonly used by the people indigenous to the region,[3] and are part of their history and mythology. Stories of the Yeti first emerged as a facet of Western popular culture in the 19th century.

The scientific community generally regards the Yeti as a legend, given the lack of conclusive evidence,[4] yet it remains one of the most famous creatures of cryptozoology. The Yeti may be considered a sort of parallel to the Bigfoot of North America.

Etymology and alternate namesEdit

Template:Contains Tibetan text

The word Yeti is derived from Template:Bo), a compound of the words Template:Bo "rocky", "rocky place" and (Template:Bo) "bear".[5][6][7][8][9] Pranavananda[5] states that the words "ti", "te" and "teh" are derived from the spoken word 'tre' (spelled "dred"), Tibetan for bear, with the 'r' so softly pronounced as to be almost inaudible, thus making it "te" or "teh".[5][9][10]

Other terms used by Himalayan peoples do not translate exactly the same, but refer to legendary and indigenous wildlife:

The "Abominable Snowman"Edit

The appellation "Abominable Snowman" was coined in 1921, the same year Lieutenant-Colonel Charles Howard-Bury led the joint Alpine Club and Royal Geographical Society "Everest Reconnaissance Expedition"[15][16] which he chronicled in Mount Everest The Reconnaissance, 1921.[17] In the book, Howard-Bury includes an account of crossing the "Lhakpa-la" at Template:Convert where he found footprints that he believed "were probably caused by a large 'loping' grey wolf, which in the soft snow formed double tracks rather like a those of a bare-footed man". He adds that his Sherpa guides "at once volunteered that the tracks must be that of 'The Wild Man of the Snows', to which they gave the name 'metoh-kangmi'".[17] "Metoh" translates as "man-bear" and "Kang-mi" translates as "snowman".[5][7][13][18]

Confusion exists between Howard-Bury's recitation of the term "metoh-kangmi"[15][17] and the term used in Bill Tilman's book Mount Everest, 1938[19] where Tilman had used the words "metch", which cannot exist in the Tibetan language,[20] and "kangmi" when relating the coining of the term "Abominable Snowman".[7][13][19][21] Further evidence of "metch" being a misnomer is provided by Tibetan language authority Professor David Snellgrove from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London (ca. 1956), who dismissed the word "metch" as impossible, because the consonants "t-c-h" cannot be conjoined in the Tibetan language."[20] Documentation suggests that the term "metch-kangmi" is derived from one source (from the year 1921).[19] It has been suggested that "metch" is simply a misspelling of "metoh".

The origin of the term "Abominable Snowman" is rather colourful. It began when Henry Newman, a longtime contributor to The Statesman in Calcutta, using the pen name "Kim",[8] interviewed the porters of the "Everest Reconnaissance expedition" upon their return to Darjeeling.[19][22][23][24] Newman mistranslated the word "metoh" as "filthy", substituting the term "abominable", perhaps out of artistic license.[25] As author Bill Tilman recounts, "[Newman] wrote long after in a letter to The Times: The whole story seemed such a joyous creation I sent it to one or two newspapers'".[19]


Pre-19th centuryEdit

According to H. Siiger, the Yeti was a part of the pre-Buddhist beliefs of several Himalayan people. He was told that the Lepcha people worshipped a "Glacier Being" as a God of the Hunt. He also reported that followers of the Bön religion once believed the blood of the "mi rgod" or "wild man" had use in certain mystical ceremonies. The being was depicted as an apelike creature who carries a large stone as a weapon and makes a whistling sound.[26]

19th centuryEdit

In 1832, James Prinsep's Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal published trekker B. H. Hodgson's account of his experiences in northern Nepal. His local guides spotted a tall, bipedal creature covered with long dark hair, which seemed to flee in fear. Hodgson concluded it was an orangutan.

An early record of reported footprints appeared in 1899 in Laurence Waddell's Among the Himalayas.[27] Waddell reported his guide's description of a large apelike creature that left the prints, which Waddell thought were made by a bear. Waddell heard stories of bipedal, apelike creatures but wrote that "none, however, of the many Tibetans I have interrogated on this subject could ever give me an authentic case. On the most superficial investigation it always resolved into something that somebody heard tell of."[28]

20th centuryEdit

The frequency of reports increased during the early 20th century, when Westerners began making determined attempts to scale the many mountains in the area and occasionally reported seeing odd creatures or strange tracks.

In 1925, N. A. Tombazi, a photographer and member of the Royal Geographical Society, writes that he saw a creature at about Template:Convert near Zemu Glacier. Tombazi later wrote that he observed the creature from about Template:Convert, for about a minute. "Unquestionably, the figure in outline was exactly like a human being, walking upright and stopping occasionally to pull at some dwarf rhododendron bushes. It showed up dark against the snow, and as far as I could make out, wore no clothes." About two hours later, Tombazi and his companions descended the mountain and saw the creature's prints, described as "similar in shape to those of a man, but only six to seven inches long by four inches wide[29]... The prints were undoubtedly those of a biped." [30]

Western interest in the Yeti peaked dramatically in the 1950s. While attempting to scale Mount Everest in 1951, Eric Shipton took photographs of a number of large prints in the snow, at about Template:Convert above sea level. These photos have been subject to intense scrutiny and debate. Some argue they are the best evidence of Yeti's existence, while others contend the prints are those of a mundane creature that have been distorted by the melting snow. It should also be noted that Eric Shipton was a notorious practical joker.[31]

Peter Byrne reported finding a yeti footprint in 1948, in northern Sikkim, India near the Zemu Glacier, while on holiday from a Royal Air Force assignment in India.[2]

In 1953, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reported seeing large footprints while scaling Mount Everest. Hillary would later discount Yeti reports as unreliable. In his first autobiography Tenzing said that he believed the Yeti was a large ape, and although he had never seen it himself his father had seen one twice, but in his second autobiography he said he had become much more skeptical about its existence.[32]

During the Daily Mail Snowman Expedition of 1954,[33] the mountaineering leader John Angelo Jackson made the first trek from Everest to Kanchenjunga in the course of which he photographed symbolic paintings of the Yeti at Tengboche gompa.[34] Jackson tracked and photographed many footprints in the snow, most of which were identifiable. However, there were many large footprints which could not be identified. These flattened footprint-like indentations were attributed to erosion and subsequent widening of the original footprint by wind and particles.

On March 19, 1954, the Daily Mail printed an article which described expedition teams obtaining hair specimens from what was alleged to be a Yeti scalp found in Pangboche monastery. The hairs were black to dark brown in colour in dim light, and fox red in sunlight. The hair was analysed by Professor Frederic Wood Jones,[35][36] an expert in human and comparative anatomy. During the study, the hairs were bleached, cut into sections and analysed microscopically. The research consisted of taking microphotographs of the hairs and comparing them with hairs from known animals such as bears and orangutans. Jones concluded that the hairs were not actually from a scalp. He contended that while some animals do have a ridge of hair extending from the pate to the back, no animals have a ridge (as in the Pangboche "scalp") running from the base of the forehead across the pate and ending at the nape of the neck. Jones was unable to pinpoint exactly the animal from which the Pangboche hairs were taken. He was, however, convinced that the hairs were not of a bear or anthropoid ape. He suggested that the hairs were from the shoulder of a coarse-haired hoofed animal.[37]

Sławomir Rawicz claimed in his book The Long Walk, published in 1956, that as he and some others were crossing the Himalayas in the winter of 1940, their path was blocked for hours by two bipedal animals that were doing seemingly nothing but shuffling around in the snow. Rawicz's entire account has since come to be regarded as fictional.

Beginning in 1957, wealthy American oilman Tom Slick funded a few missions to investigate Yeti reports. In 1959, supposed Yeti feces were collected by one of Slick's expeditions; fecal analysis found a parasite which could not be classified. Cryptozoologist Bernard Heuvelmans wrote, "Since each animal has its own parasites, this indicated that the host animal is equally an unknown animal."[38] The United States government thought that finding the Yeti was likely enough to create three rules for American expeditions searching for it: Obtain a Nepalese permit, do not harm the Yeti except in self defense, and let the Nepalese government approve any news reporting on the animal's discovery.[39]

In 1959, actor James Stewart, while visiting India, reportedly smuggled remains of a supposed Yeti, the so-called Pangboche Hand, by concealing it in his luggage when he flew from India to London.[40]

In 1960, Hillary mounted an expedition to collect and analyze physical evidence of the Yeti. He sent a supposed Yeti "scalp" from the Khumjung monastery to the West for testing, whose results indicated the scalp was manufactured from the skin of a serow, a goat-like Himalayan antelope. Anthropologist Myra Shackley disagreed with this conclusion on the grounds that the "hairs from the scalp look distinctly monkey-like and that it contains parasitic mites of a species different from that recovered from the serow."Template:Citation needed

Up to the 1960s, belief in the yeti was relatively common in Bhutan and in 1966 a Bhutanese stamp was made to honor the creature.[41] However, in the twenty-first century belief in the being has declined.[42]

In 1970, British mountaineer Don Whillans claimed to have witnessed a creature when scaling Annapurna.[43] According to Whillans, while scouting for a campsite, he heard some odd cries which his Sherpa guide attributed to a Yeti's call. That night, he saw a dark shape moving near his camp. The next day, he observed a few human-like footprints in the snow, and that evening, viewed with binoculars a bipedal, ape-like creature for 20 minutes as it apparently searched for food not far from his camp.Template:Citation needed

There is a famous Yeti hoax, known as the Snow Walker Film. The footage was created for Paramount's UPN show, Paranormal Borderland, ostensibly by the show's producers. The show ran from March 12 to August 6, 1996. Fox purchased and used the footage in their later program on The World's Greatest Hoaxes.[44]

21st centuryEdit

In 2004, Henry Gee, editor of the journal Nature, mentioned the Yeti as an example of a legend deserving further study, writing, "The discovery that Homo floresiensis survived until so very recently, in geological terms, makes it more likely that stories of other mythical, human-like creatures such as Yetis are founded on grains of truth ... Now, cryptozoology, the study of such fabulous creatures, can come in from the cold."[45]

In early December 2007, American television presenter Joshua Gates and his team (Destination Truth) reported finding a series of footprints in the Everest region of Nepal resembling descriptions of Yeti.[46] Each of the footprints measured Template:Convert in length with five toes that measured a total of Template:Convert across. Casts were made of the prints for further research. The footprints were examined by Jeffrey Meldrum of Idaho State University, who believed them to be too morphologically accurate to be fake or man made, before changing his mind after making further investigations.[47]

On July 25, 2008, the BBC reported that hairs collected in the remote Garo Hills area of North-East India by Dipu Marak had been analyzed at Oxford Brookes University in the UK by primatologist Anna Nekaris and microscopy expert Jon Wells. These initial tests were inconclusive, and ape conservation expert Ian Redmond told the BBC that there was similarity between the cuticle pattern of these hairs and specimens collected by Edmund Hilary during Himalayan expeditions in the 1950s and donated to the Oxford University Museum of Natural History, and announced planned DNA analysis.[48] This analysis has since revealed that the hair came from the Himalayan Goral.[49]

On October 20, 2008 a team of seven Japanese adventurers photographed footprints which could allegedly have been made by a Yeti. The team's leader, Yoshiteru Takahashi claims to have observed a Yeti on a 2003 expedition and is determined to capture the creature on film.[50]

A group of Chinese scientists and explorers in 2010 proposed to renew searches in Shennongjia province, which was the site of expeditions in the 1970s and 1980s.[51]

At a 2011 conference in Russia, participating scientists and enthusiasts declared having "95% evidence" of the Yeti's existence.[52] However, this claim was disputed later; American anthropologist and anatomist Jeffrey Meldrum, who was present during the Russian expedition, claimed the "evidence" found was simply an attempt by local officials to drum up publicity.[53]

A yeti was reportedly captured in Russia, in December 2011.[54] A hunter reported having seen a bear like creature, trying to kill one of his sheep, but after he fired his gun, the creature ran into a forest on 2 legs. Now some border patrol soldiers captured a hairy 2 legged female creature, that eats meat and vegetation. The creature is more similar to a gorilla, than a bear, but its arms are shorter than the legs (opposite to a gorilla). It's about 2 meters (6 feet) tall. This report was later revealed as a hoax, or a publicity stunt for charity.[55]

Possible explanationsEdit

Misidentification of Himalayan wildlife has been proposed as an explanation for some Yeti sightings, including the Chu-Teh, a Langur monkey[56] living at lower altitudes, the Tibetan blue bear, the Himalayan brown bear or Dzu-Teh, also known as the Himalayan red bear.[56] Some have also suggested the Yeti could actually be a human hermit.

One well publicized expedition to Bhutan reported that a hair sample had been obtained that, after DNA analysis by Professor Bryan Sykes, could not be matched to any known animal.[57] Analysis completed after the media release, however, clearly showed that the samples were from the Brown bear (Ursus arctos) and the Asiatic black bear (Ursus thibetanus).[58]

In 1986, South Tyrolean mountaineer Reinhold Messner claimed to have a face-to-face encounter with a Yeti. He has since written a book, My Quest for the Yeti, and claims to have actually killed one. According to Messner, the Yeti is actually the endangered Himalayan brown bear, Ursus arctos isabellinus, that can walk upright or on all fours.[59]

In 2003, Japanese researcher and mountaineer Dr. Makoto Nebuka published the results of his twelve year linguistic study postulating that the word "Yeti" is actually a corruption of the word "meti", a regional dialect term for "bear". Nebuka claims that the ethnic Tibetans fear and worship the bear as a supernatural being.[60] Nebuka's claims were subject to almost immediate criticism, and he was accused of linguistic carelessness. Dr. Raj Kumar Pandey, who has researched both Yetis and mountain languages, said "it is not enough to blame tales of the mysterious beast of the Himalayas on words that rhyme but mean different things."[61]

Some speculate that these reported creatures could be present-day specimens of the extinct giant ape Gigantopithecus.[62][63][64][65] However, while the Yeti is generally described as bipedal, most scientists believe Gigantopithecus to have been quadrupedal, and so massive that, unless it evolved specifically as a bipedal ape (like Oreopithecus and the hominids), walking upright would have been even more difficult for the now extinct primate than it is for its extant quadrupedal relative, the orangutan.

In popular cultureEdit

The Yeti has become a cultural icon, appearing in movies, literature, music, and video games.


Significant film appearances include The Snow Creature (1954), The Abominable Snowman (1957), Snowbeast (1977), Monsters, Inc. (2001), and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008), Yeti: Curse of the Snow Demon, (2008) Yetiko Khojima (Yeti; in search of Yeti, 2010). Rage of the Yeti (2011)


The Yeti plays significant roles in some television shows, including the annual American Christmas broadcast special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, in various Looney Tunes cartoons; the first episode of the series of BBC Robbie the Reindeer television specials, Hooves of Fire; in a Spider-Man story from The Electric Company; in "That's Snow Ghost!" in episode 17 (season one) of "Scooby Doo"; in DuckTales Episode 45; as the abominable snow monster Lost Crown of Genghis Khan; in Jonny Quest Episode 25; as the robotic Yeti in The Abominable Snowmen, a six-part serial from 1967 in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who (they returned in The Web of Fear, The Five Doctors, and Downtime); in Power Rangers: Operation Overdrive; in The Secret Saturdays: in Ben 10: Ultimate Alien; and in the 1977 American TV movie Snowbeast.[66] Also featured in the Cartoon Network show "Regular Show" as Skips.


In literature the Yeti has appeared in Tintin in Tibet, by Hergé, in The Abominable Snowman of Pasadena, the 38th book in R. L. Stine's Goosebumps franchise, and in a gamebook in the Choose Your Own Adventure series. The Abominable Snowman is a character in the Marvel Comics Universe and the Snowman is a character in the DC Comics Universe. The Yeti was featured in the Indian comic Super Commando Dhruva. The name Mi-go is also used in the "Cthulhu Mythos" of H.P. Lovecraft and others, e.g., Lovecraft's story "The Whisperer in Darkness." It is also used in the adult fantasy book "Monster," by A. Lee Martinez where it is found eating ice cream out of a grocery store freezer. A quest for the Yeti is described in Philip Kerr's "Esau".


American heavy metal band High on Fire included their song "The Yeti" on their second album Surrounded by Thieves. Rock band Clutch have a track entitled "The Yeti" on their third album The Elephant Riders. A psychedelic trance collaboration called "The mystery of the Yeti", featuring many prominent names of the genre, was released on two albums between the years 1996...1999. "What's the New Mary Jane" was a song written by John Lennon (but credited to Lennon–McCartney) and performed by The Beatles. It was recorded in 1968 for the album The Beatles (aka "The White Album"), but was not used. It contained the lyric, "She liked to be married to yeti, he cooking such groovy spaghetti." A newly mixed version of the recording was officially released on the 1996 compilation Anthology 3. On October 11, 2011, English singer-songwriter, Kate Bush, released, as a single from her album, "50 Words for Snow," the critically acclaimed and evocative, seven minute song, "Wild Man," described by New Music Express music critic, Priya Elan, as having lyrics "full of geographical intrigue and century old myth."

Theme parksEdit

Walt Disney World's attraction Expedition Everest is themed around the folklore of the Yeti and features a 25-foot-tall audio-animatronic Yeti which appears during the ride.[67] At Disneyland a similar ride named the Matterhorn Bobsleds features three audio-animatronic Abominable Snowmen.

Video gamesEdit

The video game Urban Yeti! features a yeti as the main character who undergoes a quest to find a mate in a human city. In the game The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, "Yeta" who became the boss known as "Blizzeta" and her lover "Yeto" in Snowpeak Ruins were "Yeti".[68]

In the SNES game "E.V.O.: Search for Eden" the player fights a Yeti as a boss during Chapter 4: Ice Age, Domain of Hynodon. After defeating the Yeti, the player then fights the Yeti's mother.

In Chris Pirih's classic game "SkiFree" the player continues skiing down a slope until he or she encounters a yeti who chases and attempts to eat the skier. From that point on, the player can ski until the yeti catches and eats them.

In the 2nd installment of Tomb Raider, the Yeti is introduced as an enemy in the Tibet levels.

2009's Uncharted 2: Among Thieves features several guardians dressed as Yeti that Nathan Drake faces during his quest to find Shangri-La.

In Spyro: Year of the Dragon, one of the playable characters is a club-wielding yet eloquently-spoken Yeti named Bentley.

In Destroy All Humans! 2, a snow-white variation of the alien Blisk is mistaken for a Yeti by humans.

See alsoEdit




Similar alleged creatures





  1. Template:Cite book
  2. 2.0 2.1 Template:Cite book
  3. Template:Cite book
  4. Template:Cite book.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Template:Cite journal
  6. 6.0 6.1 Template:Cite journal
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Template:Cite journal
  8. 8.0 8.1 Template:Cite journal
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Template:Cite book
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Template:Cite journal
  11. Template:Cite journal
  12. Template:Cite journal
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 13.5 Template:Cite book
  14. Template:Cite book
  15. 15.0 15.1 Template:Cite journal
  16. Template:Cite journal
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 Template:Cite book
  18. Template:Cite journal
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 19.3 19.4 Template:Cite book
  20. 20.0 20.1 Template:Cite journal
  21. Template:Cite journal
  22. Template:Cite journal
  23. Template:Cite journal
  24. Template:Cite book
  25. Template:Cite journal
  26. "The Abominable Snowman" by H. Siiger in Himalayan anthropology: the Indo-Tibetan interface edited by James F. Fisher
  27. Yeh-Teh: "That Thing There"
  28. Template:Cite book
  29. Template:Convert, Template:Convert
  30. George Ogden Abell, Barry Singer, Science and The Paranormal: Probing the Existence of The Supernatural, page 32 (Scribner, 1981). ISBN 0684166550
  31. Wells, C. 2008. Who's Who in British ClimbingThe Climbing Company Ltd
  32. Template:Cite book
  33. Daily Mail Team Will Seek Snowman
  34. Template:Cite book
  35. Template:Cite journal
  36. Template:Cite journal
  37. Template:Cite book
  38. Loren Coleman, Tom Slick and the Search for Yeti, Faber & Faber, 1989, ISBN 0-571-12900-5; Loren Coleman, Tom Slick: True Life Encounters in Cryptozoology, Fresno, California: Linden Press, 2002, ISBN 0-941936-74-0
  39. Template:Cite news
  40. Milestones – Jimmy Stewart
  41. Template:Cite news
  42. Template:Cite news
  43. Jim Perrin, The villain: the life of Don Whillans. The Mountaineers Books, 2005, pp.261–2
  44. Snow Walker Film
  45. Nature Publishing Group (2004). Flores, God and Cryptozoology (available only with subscription).
  46. Template:Cite news
  47. David J. Daegling, Bigfoot Exposed: An Anthropologist Examines America's Enduring Legend, page 260, footnote 21 (AltaMira Press, 2004). ISBN 0-7591-0538-3
  48. Template:Cite news
  49. 'Yeti hairs' belong to a goat By Alastair Lawson — BBC News – 11:20 GMT, Monday, 13 October 2008
  52. Template:Cite news
  54. Template:Cite news
  56. 56.0 56.1 Everest to Kangchenjunga 1954 » Viewing 7. Yeti from Book-bw
  57. The Statesmen – Mystery Primate
  58. Template:Cite book
  59. The Grizzly Truth About the Yeti – Stalking the Abominable Snow-Bear
  60. Tibet: Mystic Trivia
  61. BBC News – Yeti's 'non-existence' hard to bear
  62. Laura Anne Gilman, Yeti, The Abominable Snowman (The Rosen Publishing Group, Inc., 2002). ISBN 0-8239-3565-5
  63. Sigrid Schmalzer, The People's Peking Man: Popular Science and Human Identity in Twentieth-century China, page 220 (The University of Chicago Press, 2008). ISBN 978-0-226-73859-8
  64. Tej Kumar Shrestha, Mammals of Nepal page 352 (Nepal: R. K. Printers, 1997). ISBN 0952439069
  65. Turin Truet, Laura Anne Gilman, Searching For Yeti: The Abominable Snowman, page 37 (The Rosen Publishing Group, Inc., 2011). ISBN 978-1-4488-4764-8
  66. Template:IMDb title
  67. Template:Cite web
  68. Super Smash Bros. Brawl (2008) Trophy Description of "Yeta".

General referencesEdit


bn:ইয়েতি bo:གཡའ་དྲེད། br:Yeti bg:Йети ca:Ieti cs:Yetti cy:Ieti da:Yeti de:Yeti es:Yeti eo:Jetio eu:Yeti fa:یتی fr:Yéti gl:Ieti gu:યતી (હિમ માનવ) ko:예티 hi:यति hr:Jeti id:Yeti is:Snjómaður it:Yeti he:יטי kn:ಯೇತಿ la:Yeti lv:Sniega cilvēks lt:Sniego žmogus hu:Jeti ml:യതി mr:यती (हिममानव) ms:Yeti my:နှင်းလူ nl:Verschrikkelijke sneeuwman ne:यति ja:イエティ no:Yeti pl:Yeti pt:Ieti ro:Yeti ru:Снежный человек sq:Jeti simple:Yeti sk:Yeti sl:Jeti sr:Јети fi:Lumimies sv:Yeti tl:Yeti ta:எட்டி th:เยติ tr:Kocaayak uk:Снігова людина zh:雪人 (傳說生物)

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.