Sir David Attenborough believes there is ‘very convincing’ evidence that yetis exist.
Speaking on Friday Night With Jonathan Ross, the revered wildlife expert said: ‘I’m baffled by the Abominable Snowman – very convincing footprints have been found at 19,000ft.
‘No-one does that for a joke. I think it’s unanswered.’
The yeti is an ape-like creature said to inhabit the Himalayan region of Nepal and Tibet.
A photograph of a mysterious footprint, rumoured to be that of the yeti was taken in the Menlung Basin in the Himalayas in 1951.
A team of mountaineers travelled to the region on a reconnaissance mission before attempting to conquer Everest for the first time, a feat achieved two years later.
Eric Shipton recorded the footprint, and Tom Bourdillon, passing on the evidence to his friend Michael Davies, wrote: ‘Dear Mick, Here are the footprint photos: sorry for the delay. We came across them on a high pass on the Nepal-Tibet watershed during the 1951 Everest expedition.
‘They seemed to have come over a secondary pass at about 19,500 ft, down to 19,000 ft where we first saw them, and then went on down the glacier.’
In 1954, the Daily Mail reported the discovery of hair specimens from what was said to be the scalp of a yeti.
Professor Frederick Woods Jones, an expert in human and comparative anatomy, failed to reach a conclusion, but said the dark brown hair was not from a bear or an anthropoid (manlike) ape.
Yeti? The footprint spotted by Eric Shipton
Alleged sightings and debate has continued through the decades – but so far no-one has been able to produce a clear, definitive photograph of the world’s most elusive being.
Tibetan folklore has it that the yeti is nocturnal, whistles, and can kill with a single punch.
Investigators believe that at least two types of yeti exist: the dzu-teh (‘big thing’), which is 7ft-8ft tall, and the nich-teh, which is 5ft-6ft.
Fur blur: A recent sketch of the Yeti thought to be prowling around the Himalayas
Sir David also spoke about not being able to halt climate change.
He said: ‘We can never go back, there’s no doubt about that… it’s the speed at which we’re changing.
‘Before, it was thousands of years and now it’s decades… but we can slow down the rate at which we change.’Sarah Nelson
The Daily Mail