Go back to the Bigfoot Compendium.
On page 256 of Sasquatch: Legend Meets Science, Jeff Meldrum writes “The question arose whether these features might be an artifact of creating the cast in the fine dust. It was proposed that without consolidation of the delicate features through application of a fixative, the ridge detail was obliterated at the center of the pour under the weight of the plaster”. What exactly is a “fixative”? A fixative, sometimes called a “barrier spray”, is an aerosol agent applied to loose or dry soils prior to casting. It is usually an organic agent that has adhesive properties, often simply hair spray. Use of fixatives prior to casting tracks or impressions in loose or dry soil is standard operating procedure in police work.
To understand fixatives for myself I tested hair spray to see if it would stop desiccation ridges from forming. It did. I asked John Green via e-mail specifically if he had used a fixative on Onion Mountain. He did not. Thus, the technique that would have prevented any desiccation ridges from forming was not used.
Interestingly, Jimmy Chilcutt was not aware of the desiccation ridge process until informed of my experiments. How do I know this? Well, he told me so directly, on two occasions. Now why he didn’t know about this would be speculation on my part. But is reasonable to infer that as a police officer, he was taught and utilized correct casting procedure, which utilizes fixatives. In fact, he went into some detail about this in Jefferson Texas.
Perhaps I have been too loose in using the term “the advocates” as it appears to me that Chilcutt alone strongly advocates that the Onion Mountain cast exhibits dermal ridges. Neither John Green, Grover Krantz, nor Jeff Meldrum has made the kind of strong claims about this cast that Chilcutt has. Frankly, I think the equation here is simple. I think Chilcutt was simply unaware of the textures that can arise spontainously in casts made without fixatives in fine, dry, substrates and made a mistake in claiming they were dermal ridges.
The bottom line is this: There is simply not a textural reference standard in the form of a live or dead Sasquatch hand or foot by which to make a dermal ridge comparison. This is why the entire class of textural interpretation of putative Sasquatch footprint casts is so speculative.